Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Mini-Cons: Translucent Weapons, You Got Me Again

I've got a bad history with translucent weapons.  I see them, my mind goes dark, and I wake up in an alley covered in them and looking like Tron threw up on me after pulling a few hundred wicked donuts on one of those light cycles.

...and here we are, with Mini-Cons.

Now, don't get me wrong: It's not just the translucent weapons.  I've also got a weakness for robots that turn into not-things.  You know: eggs, spheres, discs, etc.  Shapes, I guess.  That's why Rock Lords were the best, and why Meteorbs (from MotU) could fill my pool and I'd be happy without the water.  That's also why I stayed away from those Bakugan things, even though they probably would have made me happy in silly and ridiculous ways.

So there!  You see why I saw these, held my squealing deep inside, and bought them with reckless abandon.  Lets rip 'em open and see what they are...since I didn't look that far into it before buying them.

Oooh yeah, I like this.  Instantly like this.  I am a little sad, though, 'cause that cool Autobot-Symbol-shaped thing is just a tree!  Like the sprues that hold Gundam model parts.  So this is just flash 'n bang for the packaging!  Well, dangit.  It worked!

The weapons are the only things actually stuck on there.  The figures themselves are just pegged on, and pop right off.

They are the simplest of simple, save for detail.  They're technically called Mini-Con "deployers" because they launch out of (so far) two different guys: Drift and Fracture.  I didn't get either of those, 'cause they seem to be mostly launchers, with the robot modes built around that launching feature.  It's kinda like if I had gotten into Bakugan - I doubt I would have launched them like you were supposed to.

Same here.  My first glance at these didn't really give me the desire to launch them.  Still, here's how big they are compared to the normal non-launching Drift figure:

To be able to launch them, you gotta fold them up into their disc form, which seem to be the "good guy" form.  Good guys are discs.  Remember that.

Transforming them is simple.  They each transform a bit differently, but all are just about one step and have little gears within that automatically close other parts while you push it together.

Works like that.  You just gotta ignore the screaming, but you're probably used to that, if you're a Transformers fan.

There, discs!  Good discs.  How about we take a look at how we gear them up?

The weapons are made to snap off easily, but Gundam model habits die hard, so I used some snips.  In case you couldn't tell from the pictures: The weapons are pleasantly translucent.  I want to hug them, or eat them.  Maybe both.

...NO, I didn't keep the empty tree!  I thought about it, though.  There's a part of me that died when I snipped the weapons off the tree.  I am far from a mint-in-package kinda guy, but the presentation of the robot sitting in the middle of the tree of weapons was so....pretty.  I'll miss it.

Snap-on!  This is the only part that makes me wish for more:  Everything works out great, but I wish the shoulders had a swivel.  That's it!  Just so I could move the arms forward.  It's not a deal breaker, but it would have added a tiny bit of play value, to me.

Otherwise, he looks awesome!  Plus, he's made to fold up while the weapons are on him (though you have to move the swords). 

I don't know if they can launch that way, but I kinda hope they can.  They look ready to slice straight through some suckas. 

In case you're wondering: The weapons that fit into the hands have the same pegs that smaller TFs did, a little while ago, along with Cyberverse figures from the second TF movie and the Prime cartoon.

Sawback has all peg accessories, so you can't swap his on to other figures.  They compliment his obvious ability to move forward and only forward.  I mean, anyone who is in front of him: LOOK OUT, BRUTHA.  He'll knife you, if the guns haven't already finished the job.

He's the only one that doesn't fold back up perfectly, with the accessories attached.  Not enough room in there for his helmet.  Still looks freakin' deadly! 

I imagine these come as quite a shock, to the old Mini-Cons from Transformers Armada. 

Decked out and ready for battle, these Mini-Cons don't power up other Transformers - THEY POWER 'EM DOWN.  I'm assuming.  I haven't even seen these things in action.

Lets take a look at our Decepticon Mini-Cons.  They come on the same kinda tree, but Decepticon-symbol-shaped.  This one is Dragonus, and...

...this one is Divebomb.

As I said: Most of them have only one-step transformations, so, at first, I missed that Dragonus has a tail.

If good guys are discs, I guess bad guys are bullets.  Or darts.  Something like that.

Divebomb comes with my favorite weapons, 'cause I love that green, and his guns are little and simple. 

He's the only one with any sort of assembly.  These two parts (his armor) have to be pushed together, though it's not hard.

He looks AWESOME, but once again, I do wish they had worked in some shoulder swivels so he could aim his guns.  Works out for his bullet mode, though.

As you'd expect: The Decepticons look quite a bit more dangerous. 

Also, just like with Slipstream's swords: The guns work with smaller TFs and Cyberverse guys. 

The reverse is also possible, with Divebomb using older weapons with the same pegs:

Our last guy is Dragonus, who I think is the winner among the four.

His only problem is the little blades that go under his wings: The pegs plug into a very shallow hole, and they fall out easily, unless you REALLY shove 'em in.  Otherwise, I love this guy.  He seamlessly transforms from his bullet mode to the dragon mode.

Dragonus does have the weapon peg problem, but that doesn't stop him from climbing to the top, for me.  I think it's because his two forms work the best in either mode.  He really looks like a bomb of some sort, and then easily folds open to reveal a dragon.  I'm not sure how that works out, but somehow transforming him back and forth was the most fun, when compared to the others.  If you only bought one of these, I'd get Dragonus. 

Now, there is one last thing:  Apparently some of the parts from each figure can be combined into this energy lion.

I don't know why this is, because the directions make no mention of it.  I randomly came across it on the Transformers Wiki.  It's just a secret, for some reason.  I love the little candy beast, but I do wish more of the armor and weapons could have come together to make him.  This is only eight parts (the green part is two halves).  I had assumed more parts would fit into this thing.  It needs some weapons!  ...more.  More than the weapons it's already composed of.  Still, that doesn't stop this crazy little secret from being cool.

I highly enjoyed these little guys!  I'll be keeping a lookout for future waves (even though I don't need to be starting another collection...).  These'll entertain any kid, and they are fun little bits of hand-candy for adults, even if the humanoid ones don't have shoulder swivels.  I think anyone can appreciate a quick transformation like this, especially when they've got little weapons that go right along with the conversion. 

Try one out, if you see 'em!  At least Dragonus. 


  1. You just had to go and put those delicious 3mm peg handled weapons on some Cyberverse, my one weakness.

    1. On one hand, I'm kinda glad the new Legends class in Generations can hold big-peg weapons now, but on the other hand, it means the old Cyberverse can only use their small-peg weapons and can't share them around. I'm glad they decided to use the same small-peg with Mini-Cons, even if only two of them have useful items.

  2. *pours bucket of translucent parts over head*


    1. *dives in from the side of the screen and grabs bucket* YOU SAID YOU'D SHAAAARE!!!

  3. Alexx Animated Shorts. The punchline is terror!

    1. It wouldn't be so scary if he would just be quiet when he's folding up into a disc! GEEZE, MAN!

  4. Thanks for the review of these little guys. I've been curious about them but haven't pulled the trigger yet. I like the animal bots. They remind me of the animal cassette tapes from back in the day (which were always cooler than the humanoid bot cassettes).

    1. Yeah, the animals definitely come out stronger than the humanoid ones. I feel like a shoulder joint is missing on the humanoid ones, but the animals don't really need anything more than they got.

  5. Am I nuts, or did they do something kinda like these before in Beast Machines?

    1. You may be thinking of the Deployers:
      Or possibly the Beast Riders:

    2. HA! Those things are awesome! Too bad I missed 'em. I may have to track down on of those deployers, at least.

    3. THAT'S THEM! Holy shit, I had no idea what they were called and I missed the TFWiki entry for some reason. I think I saw them at KB once and never again.