Cyberverse Guzzle

The Transformers Cyberverse is in strong competition with the Human Alliance Basic figures for the top spot on my new favorite Transformer line. While the Classics (Henkei, Universe, Generations) figures are awesome, I love the little Transformers the best. Limited as to the number of figures I can pick off the shelf right now, I've mostly gone with the Commander Class figures because of the Generation One (G1) homages included in the assortment and the fact that they've got standardized weapon sizes and great articulation (so far).

Like Powerglide, Autobot Guzzle was an impulse buy. I was at Toy Kingdom Megamall just checking stuff out after meeting a guy who bought some toys from me, and I saw a single piece on the shelf when I was about to leave.

I've come around on the issue about the packaging. When I reviewed the last Commander, I was still pretty shocked at how boring the colors on these cards are, and I still am, but that doesn't take into account how easy it is to open and reseal these babies:

If you're a play and display kind of collector, this is great for you!

Basically, to keep it intact, all you need to do is cut through the tape that covers each of the tabs and release them from the backing. Then just lift the plastic tray (it's attached at the top) and untie the single paper string holding Guzzle in.

Then, when you're done, you can put him right back in, and seal him up like brand new! I mean if you're into that sort of thing. Me, I still threw it away as soon as I was done with the pictures.

Back in the day (1988), Guzzle was one of the Sparkabots and sold for about $3.00 US. A Sparkabot was a sub line that included 4 toys that housed friction motors with a flywheel that produced sparks that flew out the back as you rolled them across the floor. I though that was pretty cool.

My G1 Guzzle is long gone, but I still remember him fondly. He had that wide body and blocky, stocky build. And that yellow shock of color! I though that was cool enough, that I kept him when we re-located back here; one of the few Transformers that I took with me. Despite being a brick with TWO points of articulation, he was fun as hell.

What the new one lacks in chunkiness, he more than makes up for in WIDE. This guy looks imposing! He looks as if he could take on Megatron himself. And look! Still yellow!

More than the packaging, it was that shock of yellow that led me to buy this guy. It triggered enough nostalgia to trigger my gotta-get-my-wallet reflex. That sharp, red Autobot insignia right on his chest? Just lovely.

He does have some paint issues (there's several areas, especially his face, where the lines aren't sharp and one color bleeds into another) but frankly, I'm just glad he gets any at all. So many of the recent Transformers are just cast in color and then tampographed that when I find one with paint, it's a thrill.

I really like his gun. Like Powerglide's handheld missile rack, it's made up of two seperate pieces that connect one on top of the other. He can use both pieces as pistols or combine them into a bigger gun. I prefer the combination since the pistols are too tiny.

I'm not so sure about this odd pattern on his shoulder, though. I'm not really sure what they were going for. It might just be an attempt to make it look like the organi-tech that Bay's team used in all their designs, or it could just be a way to try and make a large plastic block more interesting. I'm not sure it was successful.

Articulation is a bit of a disappointment.

When I saw him in package at the store, it looked as if he had knees. He does, technically, but they're far too high up his leg to be of any use to him.

He's good enough to stand, and solidly stable when he does, but you have to kind of fudge anything else. There won't be any crouching or kneeling. Running you can pull off using his excellent ball jointed hips.

He's also got ball joints at his shoulder and elbow. However, all four of those joints were insanely tight, and were on the end of relatively thin pieces of plastic that feel as if they're going to break every time you rotate something. You'll need to be careful until they loosen up a bit.

There's an "Easy: Level 1" at the top of the package which is not really accurate. I don't know who decides these things; Swashplate was a Mini-Con and he got a "2". It's not that he's hard to transform, it's just that the process doesn't seem all that intuitive. There are flaps that you need to tuck in and you have to move parts to certain points. Once you get the hang of where everything's supposed to go though, it's a fun change.

I'm not sure if this is the same ROF Challenger 1 tank that the G1 version turned into, but it's pretty sick looking. It makes me wish they'd given him an upgrade like they did with Sea Spray instead of the Cyberverse Commander treatment, because this would have been a perfect opponent for Bludgeon.

Also unlike the original, Guzzle's turret doesn't swivel and his cannon doesn't pivot. It's a sad consequence of the design. I actually would have preferred a simpler conversion scheme if it meant having that feature for the tank mode.

His rifle disassembles and pegs into holes on top of the turret for extra firepower.

Again, details on the vehicle are great. Look at all those rivets! And I love how he's got that hint of silver, and a bit of the yellow with the tampographed decals. It certainly ups it's value in my eyes.

Which is great, since at Php 550.00 (about $12.00 US), this is more than 4 times what it cost to buy the G1 toy, and isn't much bigger. I know, inflation and all, but when you look at those figures, it still hurts. $3.00 < $12.00. Those little extra touches really help to calm my oh-my-god-how-much-did-I-spend-today reflex.

I'm sure that the scarcity of this figure at Megamall was really just the first assortment silliness that plagues the toy industry. First assortments short pack good figures, and then they adjust and we get restocks. So far, Transformers has maintained enough popularity in the Philippines to warrant second and third orders, so we'll probably see more of these soon.

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