A Toys R Us exclusive in Japan in 2002, Super Convoy returns sporting an all-black paint job and on a mission to revitalize Seibertron.
C-307X Nucleon Quest Super Convoy
(Black Hole Sortie Equipment)
Function: Cybertron Supreme Commander
Transformation: Trailer Truck
Background: Once there was era in which the planet Seibertron had been struck by a fatal energy shortage. At this time, Convoy and Hi-Q, a scientist from the planet Nebulos, undertook a perilous journey in search of a new energy to replace Energon.
Abilities: In order for him to extract the super-energy "Nucleon" that exists in black holes, his entire structure is now protected by a phase modulation shield. He can now carry out activity in super-gravitic environments.
Personality: A protector of freedom, he possesses enormous intelligence and courage.
Weapons: Concussion Blaster Twin Particle Beam Cannons
Strength: 10 Intelligence: 10 Speed: 7 Endurance: 10
Rank: 10 Courage: 10 Firepower: 9 Skill: 10
The packaging is a nice homage to the style Takara used during the Masterforce series. The front and sides show the Nucleon Quest version of the toy as well as artwork reflecting the new color scheme. The top and bottom of the box as well as the back, with little exception, depict the original coloration the toy had, namely the familiar red and blue of Ginrai/Optimus Prime. Also on the front is a gold star-shaped sticker that says, "10th Happy Birthday Toys R Us."
In addition to the usualy sticker and instruction sheets, Takara also included a trading card for the tech specs. They've been doing that for a long while and I always hoped that Hasbro would follow suit. The front shows the box art and the back holds the bio and tech specs. It's a standard baseball card size too, so you can keep it safe in any number of trading card holders.
While the cab is a mere 5 1/2" in length, when combined with the trailer, Convoy measures 12 1/2" long. Although not documented, the rear of the trailer does open with enough room to store a Mini-Car or the large robot head. The double-barreled weapons can be placed on either side of the trailer near the front and the other guns can be put on top of the trailer to give Convoy and attack mode. Sadly, the top-mounted weapons would blow away part of the trailer unless aimed out to the side. Even then, they would blast the side-mounted guns. Hi-Q can also attach in his engine mode to the front of the cab. This also unlocks Convoy's ability to transform.
Primarily black with chromed smokestacks and front bumper, Convoy also features die-cast metal on his cab portion. This is something the US release in 1988 lacked. Another feature this mold has over Powermaster Optimus Prime is the retractable fists in Super Robot mode. Otherwise, everything remains unchanged so far as I know.
To transform Convoy into robot mode, you must place Hi-Q into the front of the cab to bring the legs down. Alternately, you can also push on the small button in the bottom center of the grill to achieve the same effect since Hi-Q can get stuck from time to time. Lower the legs and cod piece. Swing the arms out, lower the lower arms and flip up the robot head.
To transform the trailer into battle station mode, flip the upper panel up slightly and swing the mid side panels back. Bring the back sides out and move the upper panel the rest of the way down. Swing the outer panels out and flip the ramps down. Bring the Super Robot arms down and rotate them so that the fists face upward. Position the hitch so that it points forward. The double-barreled guns fit on either side of the base and the rifles attach to either side on the arms. All are interchangeable with each other.
All Your Base Shall Belong To Us
In robot mode, Convoy stands at just a little over 7". He features hip, knee and ankle articulation, though his legs are connected at the feet. His arms also bend at the elbows. Considering the size of the weapons he comes with, Convoy cannot hold any of them and point them forward. Hopefully, all his enemies will be much shorter than he is so he can aim at them.
The battle station features five positionable guns, two of which Hi-Q can ride when in his Nebulon mode (the double-barreled guns). There is a ramp on either side of the base that Mini-Cars or other small vehicles can roll out from as well. Over time, some of the paneling from the truck that is folded underneath the ramps tend to sag. Otherwise, it's a very sturdy design.
To transform into the Super Robot mode, return the robot to it's cab mode and swing the legs up so they are flush with the back of the cab. Remove all the weapons and return the ramps to their original position, including the large one in the center. Swing the middle weapon/trailer hitch so that it's flush with the panel. Swing the legs down, lower the arms and slide the tabs on the arms forward to reveal the fists. Insert the cab into the middle cavity and attach the Super Robot head. Place Hi-Q (in engine mode) into the front of the cab, the rifles in his hands and the double-barreled guns in the slots on his shoulders.
Towering over his Autobots at 9 1/2" tall, Nucleon Quest Super Convoy is ready to begin his journey. Super Convoy has full shoulder joints and can move his legs outward at the hip. Not terribly exciting in terms of articulation, but considering the time in which the mold was designed, it could have been worse. Still all black with chromed smokestacks, upper legs, and bumper, this repaint looks a little menacing for our beloved Convoy. Still, as far as black repaints go, this one is pretty cool looking and at least has a story to explain it outside of the traditional "evil clone" scenario.
While I really like this toy, unless you're a completist or someone that digs black repaints or happened to have a friend go to Japan and find one for you real cheap, like I did, I can't really recommend Nucleon Quest Super Convoy. It's a great mold and the color scheme is fairly nifty. But, if you're just out to get the toy for it's own merits, I'd suggest either the God Ginrai or Prime with Apex Armor reissues. Both will likely not run you as much money for what is essentially the same toy, save for Godbomber/Apex Bomber.
Many thanks to Doug Dlin for providing the translated tech specs and to Remy for the use of his pictures.
|Reviewer||Richard C. Mistron|
|Date||February 19th 2003|
|Score||(8 out of 10)|