Bumblebee Cyberverse Adventures Stealth Force Fusion Flame Hot Rod

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Bumblebee Cyberverse Adventures Stealth Force Fusion Flame Hot Rod

Post by Skyquake87 »

Name: Hot Rod
Allegiance: Autobot
Size Class: Warrior Class

So, Hot Rod's got a cool new toy for Cyberverse, right? It's part of the Stealth Force sub-line of the Bumblebee Cyberverse Adventures (no idea) which basically means a black repaint. Because that's shorthand for stealth. Whatever, I saw this thing, thought it looked pretty awesome and bought it. Turns out there's two of this version of the character doing the rounds – this neo Deluxe figure and a smaller one packed in with some tiny Transforming Sharkticons. The latter barely transforms and seemed expensive for what you got, so I plumped for this version, which is also expensive for what you get.

Robot Mode: Hot Rod has all the hallmarks of a character with a beefy alternate mode which doesn't really match with his generally slender robot mode design. He's all chest and massive arms and legs, thanks to all the vehicle mode kibble. He doesn't look much better from the back, wearing as he is, a cape made of the rear spoiler and roof. Despite these very obvious flaws, he does look really, really cool. The head is nicely sclupted and has a very serious expression, I like the flash of flame on his chest and the accents of yellow and silver throughout. It is a very, very nice looking robot mode and these new colours suit Hot Rod to a tee. Almost as much as those nice purple ones another version of the character sported in Lost Light.

Alternate Mode: This is a fantastic looking thing. It takes the original design and celebrates that 1980s blockiness. It does this by recognising that the sleek lines achievable in animation don't work so great for Transformers toys, which have to contend with actual physics, so just goes for full on dynamic looking sporty wedge. It looks fantastic, although does seem a bit too stacked up at the front. The visible ball joints on the side and slight gap where the roof connects to the body are unwelcome too, as they always draw your attention on a vehicle with such a dark palette. The clipped wheels mean it doesn't roll so well, especially as they're quite thin and this is quite a hefty vehicle.

Marks out of ten for the following:

Transformation Design: Transformation's quick and fun. It's pretty much the same as the old 1980s toy, which tickled my nostalgia bone. Legs clip together, the arms fold around, head disappears into the chest and the roof rotates around. You know the drill. 7/10

Articulation: This is where the figures is incredibly hampered. Although he can turn his head and move his legs, the arms can only move at the shoulder thanks to his daft attack gimmick. Waggling the arms out to the side activates his 'Fusion Flame' gimmick, which is more 'Bingo Wings' than threatening power move. It's rubbish unless someone's stood behind him. Or above him. 5/10

Durability: Gimmick aside, the toy's designed for quick change and a bit of rough and tumble, so feels pretty good. Like all the Cyberverse toys, he is a bit hollow here and there, but doesn't feel fragile. 7/10

Fun: I'd have had more fun out this guy if his fusion flames popped out of the forearms, rather than his elbows. It just doesn't work and his lack of articulation in the arms does limit his play value somewhat. 7/10

Price: Hot Rod hovers anywhere between £20 - £27 at retail. He seems hard to come by and frequently only available on import. It's poor value for money and I can't honestly recommend laying down this kind of money on him. I don't know how Hasbro can justify such high prices generally on the Cyberverse line, it really is an appallingly expensive line. 1/10

Overall: I really like the figure and the colours. The gimmick is crap, but I can get past that. What kills this thing is the price, no question. I keep saying that in these Cyberverse reviews, but no matter how good the toy is, no one's going to kid themselves they're happy paying Voyager prices for a Deluxe figure that feels like a cash-grab afterthought from Hasbro. If you can't properly finance the line, focus on doing one thing at one price point. Not five at various confusing scales and price points with varying degrees of success. 5/10
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