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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
Robot Mode:
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Reflector's review of: Duststorm

Name: Duststorm
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: theguyyoucalltohelpmoveintoyournewfifth-floorapartment
Sub-Group: Constructicon

As we watch Hasbro randomly lie and/or have a Scrooge-like change of heart, they have given us the gift of Energon gestalts. Sadly, we don't get cool boxsets like Japan, so I can only talk about the bloke who becomes the leg as of today. The uniquely and furrow-inducing-ly named Duststorm is that leg.

Vehicle Mode:
As we the fans scramble and grumble and try so hard to derive G1 homages from every last Energon toy, some will tell you Duststorm looks like Hook. (Some of those homages are more direct than others...) He is indeed a crane, but that's where the resemblance ends. His design is interesting, having four of his six wheels in the front rather than the rear for once. The light and dark blue scheme looks rather cool, and it's lit up by the red, silver, yellow, and black details. Somebody should have thought better of using baby blue for the tires of a crane, especially one named Duststorm, but it really does look okay. The tech details are straightforward but logical, like the winch in the back and the grippy metal stuff. The crane can extend to like one-and-a-half times its length, raise, and swivel, and it's held into idle position by a sturdy latch near the cab. The Energon piece is a huge claw that attaches to the crane head, and it looks like it can carry all sorts of couches and refrigerators by its size compared to the standard hook. Fun, but my only complaint is the weak-looking connectors between the front and back halves. I guess it's not that unrealistic, though.

Robot Mode:
The transformation is fun and certainly new, but I find the prize is the robot itself. I'm sure I'll be one of few who think this way, but Duststorm looks so cool. The color scheme is about the same, he sports a modest ten articulation points, and the crane becomes a dumb handless arm, but the look itself is priceless. Something about his little, withdrawn, blocky head, his tall awkward stature, the humility with which he wears the Decepticon logo (which does not appear in crane mode unless you dig for it) on his waist… to me, Duststorm looks like a total nerd. He's that lanky guy in the background, the balding nerd who subscribes to Wired and and reads all day. Maybe this is just complimented by his standing next to the stocky bruiser Sledge, but he looks like a guy who just doesn't fit in with the Decepticons, and that goes perfectly with his alt mode. But if you don't see this, he'll probably just be another ugly grunt in your army. (Oh yeah, and I think the Energon thing is some sort of boomberang/Divebomb-esque sword/metal detector if you fold it out.)

Transformation: 8 - Fun, intuitive, and definitely new.
Durability: 9 - The hips might get loose in old age, but he's good otherwise.
Fun: 7 - Nothing special about him on his own, but that may change with a full set of Constructicons.
Price: 9 - Like Sledge, this guy just seems a little bigger than the other basics.
Summary: 7 - It's hit or miss. You'll love him or forget him.

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