While there are more Optimus Prime toys out there than any other character in the Transformers mythos, Star Convoy remains one of the most curious and somewhat hard to find versions of the beloved Autobot leader. From Takara’s line of Battlestars: Return of Convoy Transformers, the story focuses on the return of Convoy (Optimus Prime). Through the use of Zone energy, the great Autobot Leader returns as Star Convoy, a large truck/half-track transport and Micromaster base. During that same time, however, an evil force known as Dark nova revives Megatron, rebuilding him into Super Megatron, a flying cannon. After dispatching Galvatron, Super Megatron turns his attention to the Autobots.
Responding to the return of his arch-nemesis, Star Convoy teams up with his friends Sky Garry and Grandus. Together, they destroy Super Megatron, but the Decepticon is resurrected yet again, this time as Ultra Megatron. The Autobots defeat Megatron once again. Down, but not out, Dark Nova merges with Megatron to form Star Giant. Needless to say, the Autobots destroy Star Giant, concluding the Battlestars saga.
Cybertron: Star Convoy
Function: Ultimate Commander
The legendary commander, returning to lead the Cybertrons and Micromasters. Now possesses powerful 'Zodiac' supernova energy. Caterpillar vehicle mode can travel over any terrain. Carries Galaxy Bomber, and Shoulder Cannon. Aided by the young Cybertron Micromaster Knight, Hot Rodimus.
Strength: 10 Intelligence: 10 Speed: 10 Endurance: 10
Rank: 10 Courage: 10 Firepower: 10 Skill: 10
At a massive 11 ¾” in height, Star Convoy quite literally stands out amongst other Transformers toys. His upper torso is primarily red with white fists and some yellow and silver highlights on his chest. In typical Convoy fashion, Star Convoy has a stylized version of his original toy’s head. The faceplate, forehead grill, an antennae are all in place along with the blue color of the helmet and the silver face. An additional Gundamesque white decorative piece has been added right above the eyes. The rest of his colors are all Convoy in nature. His upper legs are white while the lower legs are mainly blue. Even his laser rifle bares resemblance to the one he originally used. There is no doubting that this is THE Convoy.
Considering the time in which this toy was released, it’s not surprising that Star Convoy only has five points of articulation. He turns at the waist and his shoulders and elbows are able to move in a forward motion. So at least he can aim his weapon, albeit in whatever direction he’s facing. To compensate, he has twin-barreled cannons atop each shoulder. Each of these can rotate 360 degrees.
Roller is back as well. The treaded unit behind Star Convoy’s legs can detach and move about on it’s own via battery power, capable of forward and reverse motion. The neat part is that Roller has a roll in all three of Star Convoy’s modes. In robot mode, it allows him to “walk.” The other features will be mentioned in their respective sections of this review.
Transform to Vehicle Mode!
Star Convoy’s transformation is simple, yet slightly involved for it’s time. Turn his upper torso 180 degrees and lower the paneling on his back downward. Open his chest and flip the robot head down, close up the chest. Nest, bring the arms forward and retract the fists. Rotate the shoulder-cannons 180 degrees and bring the arms up and together. Raise the cab and lower the wheels on either side, lower each foot. Attach the laser rifle to the small black platform and stick that in the hole in the center of the trailer. Assemble the smaller cannon assemble and place that in the small hole hear the end of the trailer.
From the front of the cab to the tip of his feet, Star Convoy comes in at just under 14”. It’s interesting to note that the front of his vehicle mode resembles a cross of Convoy and Rodimus. The cab is of similar design to the Generation 2 Laser Rod Prime while the overhand above the cab borrows elements of Rodimus Convoy’s camper design. The trailer is mostly white with the blue of the legs near the back of the trailer. The stickers placed on the sides of the trailer even resemble the design of the original.
When activated, the Roller unit can drive Star Convoy in either forward or reverse. The smaller cannon in the back also rotates 360 degrees when he’s driving in either direction. Also, the black panel truck comes into play. By opening to rear roof panels, you can place the black truck into either compartment. Place any Micromaster into the back of the smaller truck, press the yellow “kneecap” and watch that Micromaster fly!
Transform to Base Mode!
Remove the weapons and small truck. Flip up the back paneling and rotate the waist joint 90 degrees so that the front of the legs are facing the right. Flip the secondary wheels back up and split the trailer in half down the center. Remove Roller, place his upside down and connect him to the small peg where he once sat. Attach the Y-shaped ramp the back of Roller and the other ramp in the front. Open both legs and fold down the black ramp. Create the robot arms from the cab again, lower the chest panel and raise the robot head. Place his laser rifle in either hand, the small truck into either leg compartment, and the smaller cannon assembly into the hole at the end of Roller.
Also included is a red connector that attaches Roller to Grandus. This, in turn, activates the motorized features Grandus has available in his base form.
Micromaster Base Mode
If you couldn’t guess, this mode looks like Star Convoy doing the splits with his chest open. That’s not to say there aren’t a lot of neat features in this mode, especially if you have a few Micromasters lying about. The chest cavity looks like a command center and has a peg to held stand a Micromaster. One side of the base has compartments for the small truck and if you happen to own another (available with the Micromaster patrols at the time in Japan) you can launch two of the diminutive Transformers. The coolest part is the Roller section of the base. Place up to four Micromasters on the Y-shaped track then flip the switch and the treads start to roll. Pressing down on arrow rolls the Micromasters forward and the treads move them down to the other ramp.
One of the nicest accessories that Star Convoy comes with is a Micromaster version of Rodimus. At a mere 2” (from the ground to the top of his head), Rodimus looks nearly identical to his larger counterpart. The only major difference is that his spoiler is on his feet, rather than behind his head. Like all Micromasters, Rodimus is easy to transform. Align his arms straight down, flip up the hood and flip his feet back. Even in car mode, there is no mistaking this is Rodimus. From the engine, to the spoiler, to the exhaust pipes, it’s all there. I can’t help but wonder if there weren’t plans at one point to make other classic characters into Micromasters.
Due to his somewhat rare status, Star Convoy can cost a pretty penny. I purchased this one about five years ago at $275 and have not seen another for sale since. I really enjoy the design and find him worth every last cent. The lack of articulation and potential cost are the only reasons I can think of that someone may not like the toy. But, I say if you have the money and can find him, give Star Convoy a chance. You might just like what you get.
|Date||July 6th 2002|
|Score||(10 out of 10)|