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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Sir Auros' review of: Prowl

Name: Prowl
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Security
Sub-Group: NA
"Logic is the ultimate weapon."

Chief of Security for Autobot forces. Calculating, quiet and competent. Thought processors intensely logical. Enhanced racing design conceals sophisticated micro-circuitry capable of processing 30,000 bytes of information per millisecond. Loyalty and patience perhaps greatest assets.

I've been hunting for this mold for a while (was looking for the RiD incarnation), and I finally nabbed one for $1 on ebay. The following week I got all 8 Machine Wars basic figures for $22.51. That really isn't relevant to the review, I'm just bragging. Prowl (and the rest of the Machine Wars line and much of the Beast Wars line) was designed by Kenner and helped reinforce a trend in Transformer design that the Generation 2 Cyberjets had started - ball-socket joints. All the Machine Wars basics figures had 'em, and this has been a major factor in my search for the things.

Vehicle Mode:
Prowl's a F1 car with an 8 ball on the nose. The only thing I don't like about this mode is the sticker on the tailfin that says "PROWL" in jagged letters. That's a bit over the top. The figure's small enough to play with easily or smuggle into your Foundations of Research class and it's easily as fun a vehicle mode as any Spychanger. The single best part about this mode (and another gimmick of the MW figures) is that the robot mode's gun is easily stored in the vehicle. That's stupendous. I hate it when I need to keep a ziploc bag or box to keep a figure's extra accessories in.

Robot Mode:
I'm afraid I just don't like Prowl's robot mode as I thought I would. The problem is that the front wheels from the vehicle mode interfere with the robot mode's articulation, which is a shame since that's the main selling point for these figures. Imagine wearing a large innertube from a semi truck's tire around your waist and moving your arms and you're in the spot Prowl's in. The paintjob could also be more detailed and I'm not fond of figures that use white plastic for the primary color. The head is also bizarrely colored this mustard yellow that doesn't look so great with the white and black scheme used elsewhere. Was a simple gray color unavailable? All those complaints aside, I do still like Prowl's robot mode and it can serve as a great display piece and is loads of fun to play with. It's just not the perfect Transformer I thought it would be.

Transformation: 9 - The Machine Wars Basic figures had a gimmick where you pulled a lever somewhere and they'd do most of the transforming themselves. I think that's neat.
Durability: 9 - Ball-socket joints, but the use of stickers that can fall off keeps it from a perfect 10.
Fun: 9 - Tires hurt arm articulation, but it's still a really fun toy.
Price: Variable - Really, really variable. It's not too often that you see this figure alone on ebay, so one usually has to buy it as part of a set. I got mine for $1 + shipping though, so I certainly can't complain.
Summary: 9 - I like the figure, but it's not perfect.

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