Starscream and Swindle - Armada - Figures

Returning to strike terror in the Autobots and usurp command of the Decepticons, Starscream makes another comeback to the world of the Transformers. Will he succeed in grasping power this time around? Only time will tell.

Tech Specs (courtesy of
Decepticon: Starscream

"My destiny is leadership."

Starscream uses his speed and maneuverability as a jet to launch aerial attacks on the Autobots. No one can compete with him when it comes to speed and skill in the air. He slices through the sky, chasing the enemy and even endangering any Decepticon that gets in his way. As the second in command, he pretends to be loyal to Megatron, but is always looking for an opportunity to weaken his leader's rule and take control of the Decepticons.

Strength: 6.0 Intelligence: 8.0 Speed: 10.0 Endurance: 7.0
Rank: 9.0 Courage: 8.0 Fireblast: 7.0 Skill: 8.0

And while Armada is said to be a brand new continuity with no ties to previous lines, Starscream’s tech specs suggest otherwise. Either that, or the name Starscream and treachery go hand-in-hand in the Transformers mythos.

Jet Mode
At 9” in length and with a wingspan of 8 ½”, Starscream is a huge jet. He is mostly red and gray with black and yellow highlights. Wheels under the pods beneath the wings and at the rear of the jet provide the landing gear. Due to the missile launchers on the back of his jet form, Starscream lacks proper tail fins. There are two sets of tiny ones on the launchers, but they appear to be more decorative than functional. Also, there is a Decepticon insignia molded onto each wing.

Pressing the cockpit canopy will activate a laser-fire sound effect. Attach Swindle underneath the cockpit and an ejecting noise will sound as Swindle is dropped when the canopy is pressed. Hold it down even longer to have the laser-fire sound follow the drop sound. Push back on the Powerlinx peg at the back of the jet briefly to activate a take-off sound. Keep holding it and it will continue with in-flight sounds. Place Swindle on the peg to flip the rocket launchers forward. You don’t really need swindle for that since they pop forward with minimal effort. A repeated missile-firing noise will activate as well when the Minicon is activated. There are two other Powerlinx pegs, one on the outside of each wing pod, but they are static.

Rotate the lower rear jets wings outward and bring around so the wings face down. Flip out the red stabilizers on the feet. Bring the waist and legs forward. When locked into place, Starscream’s head pops up from behind the canopy. Extend the arms out and down and flip the fists out. Fold the canopy down and swing the wings to face forward.

Robot Mode
At 7 ¼” high, Starscream is quite impressive looking. The color scheme hasn’t changed at all. In a very generalized way, Starscream looks similar to his original toy. The head features some of the same detailing. The wings, while smaller, are positioned the same. He has intakes on either side of his head and his cockpit makes up his chest. He features swivel and hinged shoulders, double-jointed elbows, hip rotation and his knees bend and swivel.

While there are no new Powerlinx activated gimmicks in robot mode; the left wing can detach and fold out to become a rather thick sword. However, the post on the sword, at least on mine, is slightly larger than the holes in his hands. Stress marks now plague the outsides of both hands. Hopefully, this issue will be addressed when the toy is recolored and released later this year or early next. Also, due to the electronics and the launchers, Starscream is very back heavy. If you neglect to fold out his red feet stabilizers, he will not stand up unless propped up in front of something.

Starscream’s Minicon partner is a red and black formula-style racecar named Swindle. Pull out the sides of the car all the way back then lower the red portion down. Split the front of the car in half and lower the front section. Lower the spoiler to reveal the robot head and you’re done. With the exception of the gray detailing on top of his head, Swindle remains mostly red and black. Unlike some of the other Minicons, he has some nice face detailing. Sadly, he has no articulation to speak of save for being able to point his arms outward.

This was one of the toys I was most looking forward to ever since the first pics came online. The toy is a decent homage to the original Starscream and the gimmicks don’t really get in the way. I do wish the sword looked better and that both wings could function as swords. Also being back heavy may deter some from enjoying him. And since Swindle’s here, I want to know when the rest of the Combaticons will return for Starscream’s brigade.

DateJuly 29th 2002  
Score 9 stars (9 out of 10)  

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