Vector Prime - Cybertron - Figure

VECTOR PRIME is one of the first TRANSFORMERS. A powerful, wise and incredibly ancient warrior, he has served as protector over CYBERTRON since its beginnings. Pulled out of the shadows of time by a distress signal broadcast by his damaged planet, he arrives too late to save CYBERTRON without assistance. Arising from an era in which all TRANSFORMERS lived in harmony, he is unaware of the conflict between the AUTOBOTS and DECEPTICONS, a fact that MEGATRON uses to trick him and steal the map to the lost planets and the planet keys. Realizing his mistake, he joins OPTIMUS PRIME and pledges his knowledge and skill to the desperate quest to retrieve the planet keys before MEGATRON.

SPEED: Unknown
RANK: Unknown

A nice and very alien looking space cruiser. This is one of the most unique looking alternate modes I've seen on a Transformer. He's got a projectile that can shoot out of the end of the nose of the vehicle by pressing a button on top of it. His minicon, Safeguard, can also sit on top of the cockpit, acting as a gun. Very intricately designed, there's all kinds of detailing on this thing. There's no denying that this is one impressive looking form.

Vector Prime is a tall, impressive looking robot, full of intricate design details. His aritculation is somewhat moderate, though it's certainly not significantly lacking anywhere. He has a rather unique appearance about him in this mode as well, looking like an older, wiser, and more ancient style of Transformer, as his bio indicates him to be. His head resembling the Autobot symbol looks great and is a nice tribute, suggesting he may have been the Transformer that the faction symbol was originally patterned after (at least in the storyline of this particular series). He holds a large sword as a weapon in this mode, which is even fairly intricately detailed itself. His minicon Safeguard can also attach to his arm as a gun in this mode. I have no real complaints about this mode in particular; it looks fantasic, is very stable, and is decently articulated.

His minicon, Safeguard, transforms from a sort of plane/gun thing into a robot. The vehicle mode actually looks pretty good, despite it being very strange, and fits in well with Vector Prime's appearance in terms of both form and color scheme. His robot mode is quite good too, definitely one of the better minicons I've seen. He's adequately detailed, and has fairly good articulation in robot mode, as far as minicons go. Overall he's an impressive and much appreciated little addition to this set.

Once you insert batteries, his planet key activates sounds. It makes a weird sound when the key is inserted, kind of an electronic pulsing noise. I'm not really sure what this is supposed to be, it could be the sword pulsing with energy, or maybe a sound the spaceship mode makes, or perhaps both, as this sound is made in either mode. When in robot mode, you can raise his right arm to make a different noise. Without the key inserted, raising the arm past the 90 degree point facing forward will result in a gun firing sound. I assume you should attach Safeguard to his arm for this to make sense, since he has no visible arm-mounted guns otherwise. When the key is inserted, raising the arm in the same way will result in a sort of clanging sound, obviously meant to represent the sword hitting something. This isn't really anything too special or impressive, but it's okay as an added feature, and it certainly doesn't take anything away from the figure by being implemented into it.

While each mode is great on its own, the transformation between them is actually surprisingly simple. There's really only about 5 or 6 steps to transforming him. Although whether that's a flaw or not I suppose is somewhat subjective. It's actually rather amazing that both modes look so good despite his simple transformation. Perhaps this is due to his vehicle form not resembling any real vehicle in the slightest, allowing many of his parts to work equally well for both forms. One more objective complaint I do have about him though involves the use of rubber, namely for the sword and ship side panels. The sword isn't too big a deal, though it's kind of strange to have it made out of rubber instead of plastic. It makes it warp easily, and can be slightly awkward getting it into his hand (at least on my particular Vector Prime it sometimes is). The side panels are a bigger problem though. You're supposed to fold them apart and angle them vertically in spaceship mode, but because they're made of rubber, the hinge doesn't really rotate cleanly, and the rubber often resists being moved. The panels also move and warp easily, and often do not stay straight, resulting in a visually strange effect of the wings being bent or unaligned when it happens. These side panels being made of rubber really makes no sense, as it just makes them really hard to move around into the positions you want them. And even when you do manage to get them into the right position, they often start bending out of it on their own. In addition, while the Takara Vector Prime's side panels have brown outlining along the edge of the blue part, the ones on this Hasbro release are simply completely blue rubber, giving it a less impressive look on top of also impeding its functionality. It's a rather frustrating problem, that could have been easily fixed by simply using plastic instead of rubber for these parts, which for the life of me I can't figure out why they didn't do.

Despite the simplistic transformation and problems related to the parts using rubber material, this is still a pretty great figure. He's got one of the most unrealistic vehicle modes, and one of the most unusual appearances in general, but it's that uniqueness about him that actually made me want to buy him. Everything about him is very impressive looking, in terms of both style and detailing, and he's really one of the coolest and most imaginative looking Transformer designs I've seen for a while. Having a minicon is a nice touch too, seeing as they seem all but gone from this series generally speaking. I'm glad I picked him up, and as long as you like Vector Prime's general appearance, then I'd say he'll definitely be worth picking up for you too.

DateJuly 6th 2005  
Score 8 stars (8 out of 10)  

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