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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Warcry's review of: Longhorn

Name: Longhorn
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Recon
Sub-Group: Transmetal II

Though he was only a consolation prize during the jihad I launched to find Night Slash Cheetor, Longhorn quickly became one of my favourite figures from the Universe line. He is a repaint of the Transmetal II Beast Wars figure Ramulus, a figure that I'd had on my want list for some now (since the late 90s, to be exact). Longhorn never really caught my attention, though; probably had something to do with the neon green prototypes that showed up a few months before his release. The finished product doesn't even vaguely resemble the prototype, though (not a spot of green on him, other than his beast mode eyes).

Like far too many of his Universe brethren, Longhorn doesn't have so much as a paragraph of personality to his name. Since I can't tolerate that, I've randomly decided (with absolutely no supporting evidence aside from his name) that this is the same character as Beast Machines Longhorn. So he's a warrior-philosopher who considers himself a vegetarian and fires lightning from his horns. W00t.

Alternate Mode:
Longhorn's alternate mode is some sort of ram-like critter; not a surprise, since he's a repaint of a guy named Ramulus. And since the original figure fell into the Transmetal II range, it's no surprise that he's a horrifying mixture of machine and beast rather than one or the other. Not to say that that's a bad thing; the TM2 range produced a number of striking moulds, and Longhorn's is certainly one of them.

Longhorn's primary colours are blue and gold. There are two or three varying shades of each, though, and the end result is somewhat overwhelming. An unfortunate result of the shades they chose is that a lot of the fur moulded into his body isn't very visable; this makes the mould look less detailed than it actually is.

Longhorn features eleven points of articulation (shoulders, elbows, hips, two sets of knees and waist) in this mode, meaning that you can pull off some interesting poses with him. He's a bit tricky to balance, though, so you probably won't be able to get him to stand on his own in 90% of those poses. He's not going to want to stand up if you have him reared up on his hind legs kicking his front hooves at his enemies, for instance.

The biggest problem by far with Longhorn's beast mode is the fact that his head is permenantly stuck in ramming position (with the base of the horns foremost). It looks good under most circumstances and it makes sense in combat, but it would have been nice to be able to move his head around for some of his possible poses.

Speaking of his head...by flipping down his face, you will reveal his spark crystal. I think it's a Beast Machines Dinobot crystal, but the Autobot symbol stamped on it makes it hard to tell for sure.

All in all, Longhorn's beast mode is more than adequate.

Robot Mode:
In robot mode, Longhorn has an even more unsettling configuration than he did in beast mode. He is essentially a devil, albeit without the requisite red colour scheme. His legs are the same as his rear legs were in beast mode, giving him the reverse-kneed, hooved look so popular with centaurs and satyrs these days. His front beast legs fold up and serve as shoulder pads (though they look like they could deliver a vicious kick or two), and his beast head slides into a slot behind his robot head (which, naturally, has demonic horns jutting out of it). All in all, a very impressive look.

Most of the colour scheme from beast mode carries over here, though he's a bit heavier on the gold and lighter on the blue. In fact, most of his chest, arms and legs are gold, while blue only shows up on his shoulder pads, flanks, hands and hips. Oh, his optics, too; they're an extremely striking shade of light blue. Very impressive overall, and an improvement over this mould's original deco.

Longhorn has a more-than adequate amount of articulation: two points each in his shoulders, elbows and knees, a point at his hips and neck...and his beast mode legs, too. It adds up to nineteen by my count, which makes him an extremely posable and fun figure.

It would be something of a disappointment if such a figure was unarmed, but rest assured that he isn't. He has vicious-looking blades attached to his forearms, and his ram horns can be used as some sort of pincer-type weapon. Why you would want to I can't say, since it's one of the worst weapons I've ever seen. But either way...it's there if you want it.

Longhorn's robot mode is quite impressive and fun; one of the best Universe releases so far.

Transformation: 7 - A few weak spots, but it manages to create two good modes.
Durability: 7 - His shoulders and hips are built in a way that makes them suceptable to breakage, I think.
Fun: 9 - A good-looking figure with lots of articulation.
Price: 9 - Currently warming a shelf near you...
Summary: 9 - As I said above, Longhorn is one of the best toys released in the Universe line. Highly Reccomended.

 
 
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