Its a Battle of the Bots in the December issue of ToyFare magazine. The crew over at ToyFare put Transformers and Gundam to the test to determine which is the coolest robo-hero in the toy universe.
With a bit of humor, the article takes a solid look at the robot toy phenomenon by comparing and contrasting the impact these popular figures and TV shows have had on fans for more than a decade.
In typical ToyFare fashion they present a batch of factiods and background info on the two lines. I like ToyFare, but it is usually a bit thin on content and lacks depth for my tastes. While, this article is no exception, it is still worth a read. I will give ToyFare low marks for accuracy. They hardly covered the whole Transformers history and could have made much better choices for comparisons. If they had, the results would be different. So much for editiorial integrity.
Like a transforming robot beauty contest, the ToyFare editors judge Transformers and Gundam in a variety of categories such as design, bravery,
fire power, fan dedication, merchandising,
character rendering, durability and other areas.
Bots from the different camps are put through a series of tests to determine their strengths and weaknesses. In one example, ToyFare looked at who has the most dedicated fans. Transformers took the prize with fans that were willing to dress up like, change their names to and even tattoo themselves with their beloved Transformers namesakes. Gundam did get the edge for causing more department store stampedes. Kudos to the Trans fans for being more civilized.
My favorite feature was the durability tests. ToyFare put these bots through the wringer, literally. In a series of stress tests they rate the RiD Optimus Prime figure against a Gundam GP-01 figure on various factors like impact, pressure, armor and fire. This entailed dropping figures from 200 feet, driving a car over the loose figures, shooting at them with guns and lighting them on fire. For the most part, Gundam held together much better in all the tests but the impact test. Sorry Optimus.
And now the bad news. In about 10 separate comparisons Gundam took the lead overall. In the end, ToyFare's, albeit slanted, choice was weighted heavily by Gundam's "rich history and highly detailed products." Transformers would have done better were it not for low marks in character rendering and story inconsistencies. Yeah, whatever.
While its a though pill to swallow, we all know who the real champions are. Pick up an issue at your local newsstand and see for yourself how your favorite toys did side by side. Send ToyFare a note and let them know what you think at firstname.lastname@example.org