While we regretfully cannot trace them back to their original source (contact us @TFormers on Twitter
if you know the original poster so we can credit properly!) today we have our first looks at the beast mode of MP-46 Blackarachnia, coming later this year in the Masterpiece Beast Wars lineup. Notably, the beast mode display piece was not present during the press-only days of Shizuoka Hobby Show, being added to the display only after the event finally opened to the public.
Finally seeing it, one could certainly speculate why they waited until after the major coverage outlets had moved on, as Blackarachnia's beast mode is probably not what most anyone had been expecting. The spider's abdomen can be seen to clearly display the folded up robot parts, with no additional panels present to help disguise them except on the very top. The robot arms also remain very easily seen. The robot mode definitely looks like the priority in designing this figure. That makes sense, especially considering this is a figure that will probably be not much bigger than a normal Deluxe class toy; the mass and volume are dictated - and limited - by a very specific look for the robot. Ultimately there just isn't much room to hide ridiculous engineering to get the alternate mode more "perfect".
But with a rumored price point of ¥15,000 (about $135 at the current rates) it might be hard for many would-be buyers to accept the compromises involved. The inclusion of another display stand like Dinobot's, and the spider web parts which both serve to bulk up the basic plastic mass of the release probably won't help many people to feel like this has become a better value when it only has one mode even suitable for display.
The question now becomes, is Blackarachnia's potentially high price tag and decidedly lacking beast mode going to cool interest in the continuation of Beast Wars Masterpieces? Tarantulas might fare a bit better, but this must give people pause when considering other challenging designs, like Terrorsaur, Inferno, or even Rhinox. And that's not even addressing the possibility of QC or material issues such as were reported occurring in MP-43 Megatron.