Air Defense Team - Armada - Figures

The original Star Saber led the heroic Cybertrons against the evil Destron forces of Deathsaurus in the Japanese TF series known as Victory. Now, in a clever wink of appreciation to the fandom, Hasbro has bestowed the name upon this combined form of the Air Defense Team.


Jet Mode: Jetstorm is a mostly translucent Concorde jet with blue trim, a red and black nose, black cockpit windows, white "neck," and grey undercarriage garbage. At just over 7 cm(2.75") with a 4.5 cm(1.8") wingspan, he's the longest of the trio. He's got notches running along the edges of his wings, tiny little passenger windows, and even flip-out landing gear.

Transformation: Decidedly more complicated than a Micromaster. The jet's nose folds back, tail folds down, robot legs swivel down, and arms unfold.

Robot Mode: Jetstorm stands 6 cm(2.3") tall in robot mode. He's mostly translucent and grey, with a T-shaped red face
that's very reminiscent of the G2 Cyberjets. His faction symbol is on his right shin. His shoulders swivel up and down, his elbows bend, his hips swivel, and his knees have combination ball-and-swivel joints. The big blue fin on his chest looks awkward, and no doubt restricts him from giving hugs.

Overall, a pretty good toy. 8/10


Jet Mode: Runway is some kind of SST jet, similar to Jetstorm, but with twin stabiliser fins and two small fins behind his cockpit. 6.5 cm(2.6") long with a 4.5 cm wingspan, he's primarily translucent with metallic silver trim, black cockpit and stripes, some red detailing, and grey undercarriage garbage. Like Jetstorm, Runway has tiny passenger windows and flip out landing gear.

Transformation: The robot legs and arms swing down and the rear of the aircraft folds down to become the robot's chest.

Robot Mode: Runway stands 6 cm tall. His head is very stream-lined, with two red bars for a face. He has what appear to be heavy laser blasters mounted on his forearms, sweet! He's got joints at the elbows, hips, and knees, and is nice and stable thanks to the jet's nose, which touches the ground and thus functions as a third leg. Also, he can crane his neck to look up at larger TFs. His faction symbol is on his left wing.

Although slightly less poseable than his teammates, Runway's still a neat little guy, especially with those arm blasters of his. 8/10


Space Plane Mode: Rounding out the trio is Sonar, a white, blue, and grey X-33 space plane with a black cockpit, metallic gold technobits, and a translucent cylinder mounted underneath. Including the cylinder, Sonar's 5.5 cm(2.2") long with a 5 cm(2") wingspan. A nice grid pattern covers almost the entire body of the space plane. Although he has no landing gear, Sonar can balance on his cylinder, which, of course, becomes the handle of the Star Saber. His faction symbol is located on his back.

Transformation: The front section of the space plane becomes the robot legs, the robot head and chest flips out when the Star Saber handle is swung over, and the arms unbend.

Robot Mode: In robot mode, Sonar is 6 cm tall including the handle on his back. He's the most colourful member of the Air Defense Team: grey, blue, and translucent, with a T-shaped red face and metallic gold chestplate. His shoulders swing up and down and his elbows bend, though not enough for him to straighten his arms. His legs suffer from Megatron syndrome---the hips and knees only swing out to the sides. In addition, his ankles are ball-jointed and his wings swivel independently.

Also, Sonar's head can fold down in order for the Star Saber handle to swing up and function as a mega cannon, a la Dirgegun from BW2. This, along with his neat space plane mode, makes Sonar my favourite of the trio. 8/10


Compared to forming Perceptor, this is a snap. Runway and Jetstorm connect at their rears to form a diamond-shaped blade and Sonar's front section splits to become the hilt.

From blade tip to handle, the Star Saber measures 14 cm(5.5") long, and at first glance, looks more like a spaceship than a weapon. Or, it simply looks like three aircraft caught in an uncompromising position. I'm also rather dubious as to how effective a sword it really is, since its rounded tips and bulgy proportions make it look more suited for bludgeoning an opponent to death rather than stabbing and hacking. The peg connecting Jetstorm to Sonar comes loose with just a few gentle shakes, although this may only be the case with mine. And as others have noted, it's much too long for it to effectively light up when placed in the fist of Armada Optimus Prime. On a more positive note, the handle will fit into the fist of almost any
Ultra-sized TF, including G2 Laser Optimus Prime/RID Scourge, RID Optimus Prime, Ruination, TM2 Megatron/Cryotek, Tigerhawk, Rampage/Shokaract, Big Convoy, and BW2 Galvatron. For that and for effort, the Star Saber gets a satisfactory grade of 7/10.

Overall, Susp Sez: Although the Star Saber isn't all that great, the individual members of the Air Defense Team are cute, exquisite, and fun, and unlike Sureshock of the Street Action Team, none of them have suffered much from being component toys. Thus, they're well worth the money. 7.8/10


"We are the power of the sword." -Air Defense Team

DateDecember 11th 2002  
Score 8 stars (8 out of 10)  

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