So, the Kre-O Transformers Kreon Micro-Changers (that's a mouthful) have been out for a while now, but I've only gotten around to completing them this week. I had a bit of trouble getting my hands on a Galvatron, since the first few boxes I went through were sold out of him. Finally got him the other day at Toy Kingdom Express at SM Megamall.
I'm not sure if he's short-packed or what. No way to really tell with these $@#%ing blind packs.
Well, actually, that's not completely true.
I'd taken the time to copy down the codes that were revealed on www.seibertron.com (click HERE for the article) that would hypothetically help you pick out the character you need with no fuss. So here I am, like an idiot with a list of numbers and I can't find a one that matches. It turns out that the codes stamped on the front of the packs delivered to the Philippines are all different from the ones listed on the webpage. Thankfully, some of the more enterprising folks among the sales reps at Toys 'R' Us took the initiative to write down a simple way to determine which figure is which, without opening them.
Turns out, all you really need to look for on the stamped code is the number of the last digit. Match it to the last digit of the characters' codes (found on the instruction sheet) and you're golden. The TRU folks wrote it all down right there on the box's lid for customers to see.
So if you're looking for that elusive Galvatron, look for a pack stamped with a number that ends in "8". If it's Scorponock that you're missing, look for one that has a "1" tacked on at the end. Gawd, why can't all blind packs be this easy to identify?
I was able to pick up 5 of the 6 in one go at TRU Galleria, but as I said, no Galvatrons were to be had. These were enough to make me want him though. I'd been wanting to collect the Kreons since the Kre-O line was first announced, but with prices of the building block sets ranging from Php 800 to 5,000, it's easy to understand why I didn't rush to the store to buy the lot of them.
These singles, though, are awesome.
Each comes in it's little pouch with graphics of the character on it: a big character portrait in robot mode, and a smaller one in robot mode. It's not really a product shot, so prepare yourself accordingly. There aren't any knees or elbows on these babies and you're not going to get poses anywhere near as action packed as the ones you see here.
The back of the pack has a whole lot of blurb-age above and below a set of smaller versions of the same artwork. It's the Kre-O "collect them all!" or "also available at your local toystore!"
I was kind of disappointed that they didn't actually transform. I mean a part of me knew that that was going to be the case, since these are basically just LEGO knock offs, but it would have been awesome if they'd been like little Legends Class figures that were in the Kreon style.
What you really do to change them is take them apart and put them back together in different configurations. They are perfect parts-formers.
The figures look pretty decent on their own, and if you were able to buy all he sets available and have a real Autobot vs. Decepticon desktop war, it would be epic, but they each have extra pieces that don't really fit with the robot mode and hang off as kibble until you get tired of it and just dump it into your bits box.
Remember, you still need those parts to change them into their respective alternate modes. Going clockwise from the top left photo above: Crankcase turns into a "car", Spinister (what a name!) turns into a "helicopter", Sunstorm turns into a "jet", Scorponok turns into a "scorpion", and Waspinator turns into a "wasp" (duh).
The robot forms are far superior to their vehicle or beast modes. Some of them are just plain crap (I'm looking at you Crankcase!) and is pretty much just the figure lying down with it's arms up holding something. OR, just the figure with something stuck to its head (yeah, Sunstorm, don't think I didn't see that!).
I'm pretty sure kids would find this "2 IN 1" malarkey much more fun than I do. These "vehicles" modes require way more imagination than my old body has in it these days. The best one is probably Spinister (I can't get over how cool that name is - he's a helicopter, get it?), since he looks very close to what a helicopter would look like. The worst is probably Scorponok, since... well just look at him.
For me, the robot forms the best form to display them in.
Most of them get a little vest that blocks the tampographed designs on their chest from view. I'm not sure why they bother with the graphics, but it pays to take the vest off for display. Some of their parts also change into weapons for the robots if you re-assemble them in the right way. Sunstorm's tail fins and cone become some weird looking video game control gun, and Spinister's (awesome!) skids turn into some kind of twin-barreled boom stick.
Each of them come with their own translucent purple laser guns as well, which fit right into their itty-bitty hands. They're pretty sweet and interchangeable to boot. In robot mode, I've got to say that Crankcase is my favorite. There's just something about Car-ticons that is just cooler than the jets and guns.
I was able to find a Galvatron about a week after I got the rest of them, and like the first five, I like his robot form a lot more than I liked his cannon mode, which looks ridiculous. He's also saddled with this odd back pack which is just his left over parts.
After I got him though, he quickly became my favorite. That gun!
I think the biggest thing that hampers the design for these is that they're obviously re-using various parts from different Kre-O sets, so it's kind of like assembling your own G.I Joe vehicle from leftover LEGO bricks. I was never able to afford new LEGO sets as a kid, all of mine were second hand pieces bought from yard sales and garage sales and thrift stores for 50 cents or something, so there were never any instructions and pieces were always missing.
If that was you, then you kind of just used whatever you had and built whatever you needed at the time. Your Turtles need a Party Van? Here's a box and some wheels. Ghostbusters don't have a fire house? Here's a box with a window. That sort of thing.
Well, that's how these little sets feel to me. None of the parts were designed or machined to be a jet canopy, there isn't any tail rotor here, and that scorpion tail was probably meant as an door hinge. The alt forms are basically just fan modes and that takes away quite a bit of fun for me.
Still, the robot modes are sweet, and make me wish that there was a LEGO Transformers game for my PSP. I'm hoping that I can eventually get more of these (at least those 4-packs with the Vehicons and Auto Troopers) and really cover more square footage on my desk with Kreon on Kreon action.
Right now, all I have is 6 Decepticons vs that Special Edition Optimus Prime I got from the Hasbro/Playkit/Cybertron Philippines distribution event back in June. I got that one for free after buying a few Transformers figures, and now he's got someone to fight!