Ever since we saw the pre-views at Toy Fair, the Playskool Transformers toys have garnered quite a bit of attention. That is pretty impressive considering this was amidst many new Robots in Disguise releases and a lot of fanfare around Armada. Its a wonder what all the excitement is about over these Transformers figures for little folks. With the release of Aerobot, the one everyone's really been waiting for, the answer is simple. The toys are just darn cool! I can't put it other way, so here's my review of this *really cool* Transformer Aerobot.
Blister sealed on the card in Robot Mode, Aerobot is a hefty figure in the package. The people stocking the shelves in the stores must hate this toy. The card itself is 12.5" wide by 11" high and juts out about 4" from the card. There's a cut-out on the front of bubble so you can "Try ME!" Press his Autobot logo to demo his voice and light effects. Once you get the bubble off, you'll still have to contend with the standard twisty-ties us TF fans have come to know and loath. A few of snips here and there and Aerobot is freed from the pack in full robot mode. Cool!
Aerobot stands almost 7" tall and will take up about 11" or so of shelf space with his broad wing span. Hardly what you could call paint job, the soft blue tone plastic is highlighted with off-white down his back and sliver paint around the jet engines and cockpit. Sparse use of a deep orange colored plastic and painted arrows gives this guy a swift look.
The figure actually has more articulation than you would expect. While his robo-legs have no knee joints, the hinging type mechanisms that attach the legs to the torso provide more than adequate mobility. The lower legs are wide and weighted enough to maintain a decent variety of positions with little effort. Perfect for kids. The robo-arms are somewhat limited in movement, with a shoulder mount that moves from upward to downward. Socket mounts are attached to those that allow the angled arms to swivel around.
The wings mounted on his back can slide up and down a few inches to give him more of an attack mode look with them in the up position. All things aside, the movement is plenty sufficient for this figure.
Aerobot is a snap to transform. Literally. From robot mode, grasp his chest section and flip it up till it snaps in place. Swivel the arms and legs around to face the rear of the jet. Finally, flip down the small orange landing gear underneath the front cockpit section. That's it.
Jet Plane Mode
This is one tough jet. The plane's features are thick and robust. Like someone took a regular figure. Super deformed it and then blew it back up to normal size. Cool or what? No doubt the design is geared more towards the kind of wear and tear a kid needs to have in a toy. Regardless, this is still a handsome looking figure.
The plane has three tiny, treaded, orange wheels that it can roll on. One in the front that flips down on the landing gear from the nose of the plane. The other two are embedded in the two tail-fin sections. Probably not the best thing to land on Mom's coffee table, but they are sturdy and will roll on most any surface.
This mode isn't on the card so its not a *real* mode. However I was able to transform Aerobot into a decent Gerwalk (half jet / half robot) mode. Honestly, the figure does not balance that well in this form. The trick is to keep the arms pulled back to distribute more of the weight to the rear. Still a pretty cool pseudo feature if you ask me. There's a pic (#14) of it in the Gerwalk mode at the end of this review.
One of the really neat things about this figure is it knows what mode its in. How do I know it knows? Simple, it only talks when its in robot mode. Pressing the orange Autobot button on his chest triggers one of three responses. "Transformers Go," "Aerobot Power" and "Transformers to the Rescue" can be heard accompanied by his flashing helmet. Transform Aerobot from plane to robot and he says "Transformation Complete." When he's in plane mode. Press the orange Autobot button and the figure emits a jet engine type of sound effect that sounds more like Godzilla whaling to me.
If you couldn't tell I loved this toy from the start, I do. Its a nifty addition to the Playskool line of Transformers that takes the figure size and sophistication, even for little kids, to another level. I understand not every Transformers, collector will find these toys desirable. Those who do like them won't want to pass this one up. In the context of the Transformers kids toys I give this a top rating.
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|Date||August 6th 2002 |
|Score|| (10 out of 10) |