Knightdramon's review of: Megazarak
"There is no retreat for me-only advance!"
I have to admit that Superlink was one of my favourite Transformer shows. I had only watched a handful of Energon episodes before I switched over, as I felt the dialogue was being changed too much from the original. And I was not wrong. I even liked the voice acting better. One of the characters that I liked in the course of the series was Megazarak (Scorponok in Energon). There was depth in his character and meaning behind his actions, something that was not apparent in the US version.
Driven by my sudden impulse to get back to Tfs after a long hiatus, it was only natural that I'd get his corresponding figure. Being part of a large haul of six mega-ultra Decepticons, he quickly stood out from the rest because of the looks. Not that the rest weren't nice, but he was just...imposing. And had lots of playability options.
One thing to note is the quality of the figure. All the Takara figures of the haul had ultra stiff joints. My hands actually hurt after I had managed to transform them all. There are no loose joints at any part of the figure.
Since this is so different from the US version, I'm going to include a brief description. Megazarak comes packaged in a fairly small box (total width is just about the height of a cybertron deluxe packaging) that features some amazing artwork. The fifth figure to come out in the Destron line up, his code number is SD 05. The figure came out sometime during 2003-2004, gaining the 20th anniversary logo I first noticed on Binaltechs. "Transformers is a transforming robot that was created in 1984, and has been loved by everyone in the whole world" is the stupid engrish text found next to the logo. All over the box are pictures of Megazarak's transformation modes and on the top of the box is the same artwork of the character, only done in dark blue\green colours, giving you a feel that he was submerged in the water. Absolutely fantastic packaging, and one of the reasons I choose this version over Energon Scorponok.
Ground Attack Mode
Megazarak is not really a scorpion (like his BW namesake), but rather a scorpion-like tank\construction vehicle. He's got treads, a cabin-like cockpit as well as a hook on his tail. His enormous claws are featured prominently and offer a hint of his scorpion self, as well as the little mandibles and tail. He rolls freely on any surface as four little wheels are located on the underside of his treads.
The main colours are gloss metallic green, bronze gold, black, olive green and hints of blue. There's also transparent yellow plastic used for some of his parts. Overall, he's much more show accurate than his Energon counterpart and the colours work great together.
Megazarak is far from boring in terms of detail. Throughout his body are pistons, cables, circuits and vents. All those details are scattered evenly on his claws, snout, cockpit and tail.
As far as playability goes, Megazarak is awesome. He's got nine meaningful points of articulation, three on each limb, most of which are ratchet jointed. But that's not all! His claws open a long way to reveal a spring loaded missile launcher, and his tail has a mechanism in which you pull back the blue cockpit like part and two transparent yellow blasters swing forward. Electronic sounds were present, but were so annoying to the point where I had to take the batteries off before finishing the transformation. Almost every movement on the tail would result in a laser sound.
Overall, Megazarak has a fantastic vehicle mode that's only surpassed in looks by his robot mode.
Aerial Attack vehicle
If you thought that Megazarak looked small for an ultra figure, I dare you to think again after seeing this mode. He is massive, towering over ultra figures such as Magmatron (or Cybertron Scourge) in height. This is mainly because his tail needs to be fully elongated in order to resemble the nosecone of the jet, but he owes some bulk to the fact that the treads and claws come pretty close together in the back.
For an aerial mode, he doesn't have wings. Instead, you're led to believe his claws double as wings, as his joints enable them to be displayed retracted, wide open, stuck in mid-way...the possibilities are vast.
The only new parts in this mode are the boosters, which were previously tucked away in scorpion mode. There's a lot of intricate detail on them, on the exterior and interior. Due to them being part of the treads in ground attack mode, the outer shell is moulded like that. The interior has ridges and lines running along, evoking the look of turbines. Again, due to his articulation points, the turbines can be displayed in a variety of angles, with the golden fins adjusted to your liking.
Overall, while this mode does feel like an afterthought, it doesn't look like one at all. The number of joints around the major parts (wings, boosters, nosecone) benefit the toy immensely, as one can customize it to his\her liking without trouble. A very solid mode that comes third in ranking after his other two modes.
Here we are...the best aspect of this figure. With an average height of about thirty centimetres (or 12 inches, whichever you prefer) Megazarak is definitely an imposing figure. The "scorpion head" opens up and widens out to form his shoulders, doing little but adding to his look. The same symphony of colours is present here.
As far as durability goes, Megazarak is built like a brick. Admittedly I had problems with balancing him until it was pointed out to me that he has heels. His tail can be displayed over his head or act as a third leg if the need arises, it's all up to you. His joints are ultra stiff
(this needs to be highlighted), effectively making your arms hurt the first few times you fiddle with him.
Whilst all the articulation points and joints are there, Megazarak still leaves a tiny bit to be desired. Before I go on, let it be noted that all his joints are ratcheted and there are no ball joints on the figure. With that being said, Megazarak lacks some very important articulation points. First of all, his legs cannot spread vertically beyond fifteen or so degrees. If that joint was included, his hips would have to be re-moulded to allow for some free space. Nonetheless, his legs can bend at the knee, twist above it and mode forwards or backwards. Secondly, his hands cannot be raised to his chest without twisting them at the base. This means that if you get him to hold the star sabre (for example), he can't bring it horizontally to his face because the arms aren't designed that way. Nevertheless, Megazarak has 25 meaningful points of articulation, most of which are centered in his arms. His tail gimmick still works in this mode.
His head sculpt is nothing short of spectacular. It evokes the sad yet feral look of this character perfectly, with small lines angled on his eyebrows. The face is painted in a yellow, mustardy tone with crimson eyes. His visor bears a great resemblance to his G1 namesake (as well as other things on the figure), but there's no headmaster tossed into the mix.
Additionally, the two missile launchers available in scorpion mode are here as well. The spring won't fire unless you manually push it, so there's no fear of accidental launching when you play around with the claws.
To sum it up, Megazarak is one amazing display piece that can also act as a toy. He has all the articulation points and joints needed, but the construction of his legs prevents him from getting into any decent action poses. However, his fun modes and imposing look remedy that. Recommended over both other releases of this mould for his superior colours, but not for his price. Don't hesitate to get him if you don't have any version of the mould.
6. Nothing really hard, but it does take some force to get the pieces to move.
9. Amazing, sturdy construction with ratchet joints, and he is stable enough in robot mode. What more could you ask for?
10. I don't really play with them, but he's got plenty of options to keep you interested for a long time.
6. Paid 40 dollars for mine, when the Energon and Cybertron versions retail at 27. I consider it okay, given the obscurity of most superlink releases, but it's still money.
9. Very fun toy, fantastic display piece, great homage to a very expensive figure of the past. Recommended over the other versions.