Sunday, September 8, 2013

Kreons, bootlegbots, and a few random thoughts.

I don't have anything new as Generations Hoist has made his way into the my geographic area but I haven't been able to find him. Yet. Patience.

However, I checked Target and they had a box full of the Wave 3 of Kreons. There are numbers on the packages that will tell you which figure is which in the blind packs, so I pulled that up online and pulled out the six packages that corresponded to Ramjet, Thrust, Beachcomber, Huffer, Long Haul, and Sharkticon. These are adorable, of course, Lego-figure sized versions of your favorite TF characters. I never posted any pics of the ones from wave 2 that a friend picked up for me a few months ago. So I took a hasty pic of both wave 2 & 3.

left to right: cute, cute, adorable, huggable, awww, cute, lookitthatone, who wants chocolate?, cute...
It's a hasty pic but the new mancave hasn't been organized or cleaned. I moved recently and I spent a lot of time putting together bookshelves and coffee tables and killing all kinds of bugs, so no time to set up the art table and have space I can photograph toys...just as equally incompetently.

One thing I've noticed is that Target, and maybe they're not alone, has abandoned the Kre-O Transformers kits with a few exceptions, which are the Kreons in blind packs and the combiner kits. I'm not sure what the consensus is regarding the kits. Do TF fans just want the little adorably awesome versions of their favorite TF characters as opposed to the unwieldy non-transforming Kre-O kits? I bought a few kits and eventually I kept all the Kreons and sent the building kits to nephews and friends with kids who love regular Legos. Blind packs are slightly annoying to me though I'm grateful for the printed #s identifying which is which inside, as I only want certain figures from these runs.

Random thoughts and some bootleg-bots after the jump.

RANDOM THOUGHT ALERT! While on the subject of building bots, what is up with Construct Bots? What is the purpose of these, especially being released not much longer after Kre-O? If Kre-O kits defeat the purpose of transforming robots, what is the point of having ANOTHER set of toys you have to build that don't transform? I see these in stores next to regular TF releases (Kre-Os are always in the Lego section) and not only do they barely even look like TFs, the most interesting thing about them appears to be the case they come in. (Clearly I am passing on these.) Anyway, I am not one to look to for the state of the transforming robots industry, but I have to wonder if Hasbro is somehow competing with themselves in some way and killing interest in their own lines, licensed by other companies or their own.

SO while I had the camera out, I figured I'd take another pic. A while ago another local TF fan was moving and thus needed to sell part of his enormous collection. He has had 3rd party figures and...bootleg (KO's) figures, be they exact copies of Botcon/TFCC specials or just some exact copy of a Classics figure but with a different pain job. Normally, these are not items that interest me. But he had some seekers that supposedly matched the 'rainmaker' 'cons in some of the early G1 cartoons. Acid Storm is one of these characters that made that brief cartoon appearance, and then was given a classics figure followed by a Kreon followed by a Masterpiece. Sunstorm has had several figures, including a Kreon and a Masterpiece and a Botcon special. I figured for "troop builder" purposes I bought them from him.

So, in the front is, I guess, Sunstorm. I had a hard time deciding if the bright orange one is Sunstorm or if it would be the dirty yellow one. If you check out his TF Wiki page you'll see that his e-Hobby G1 mold is Orange, while fiction and other figures are a combo of yellow and orange. So, who would be the yellow figure? And what about the purple?

I decided to name the yellow one "Buzzkill." His specialty is just ruining things for everyone. Passive aggressive warfare. The purple one? PURPLEBOT. Because he's purple. Hasbro, get to trademarkin'.

WAIT, HOLD UP! Looks like Purplebot has been retroactively named...HOTLINK? I am realizing as I'm typing this that perhaps my KO connection knew they were making a set for Botcon and decided to dump these. These were made long before Botcon 2013. Weird. WELL, at least it's obvious these aren't the Botcon figs, and I've just documented that I have the bootleg versions. Maybe I'll still call this one Purplebot.

The 3rd figure in the Botcon seeker set was Bitstream; it looks like his color scheme is a shade of blue-green. So I'll just keep calling the yellow one "Buzzkill."

Their hands are loose after a few transformings. Most bootleg versions of Classics figures tend to get loose joints quickly that way. Which is why I generally avoid them, which is easy because, even knowing a few people who have them, I rarely come across them.

RANDOM THOUGHT ALERT! Do you consider 3rd party figures, either updates or homages, to be 'bootlegs'? '3rd party figure' doesn't have the same negative connotation that 'bootleg' does. Someone makes a KO, it's not regarded as a homage, tribute, or fan-demanded but Hasbro-ignored figure. It's a direct knockoff.

I have another seeker KO, pictured in the ROBOTS IN CAHOOTS podcast image. It was in Quake's $3 bin and is ridiculous. I'll pick something up like that if it's both interesting and cheap, which is the purpose of this blog, of course. Be interesting, be cheap. (I think I have my own tech spec motto!)

RANDOM THOUGHT ALERT! Sideswipe is confirmed to NOT be in Transformers 4. Well, one more reason to hate these movies.

RANDOM THOUGHT ALERT! Oh, I saw the trailer for the new Robocop movie. From what I gather, some guy nearly dies in an explosion, his wife approves of him being turned into Robocop, then probably spends time telling the guy he's a guy and not just Robocop and to reconnect with his family AND with his human side. Did I nail it? If I did THAT RUINS EVERYTHING ABOUT ROBOCOP.

Okay, until next time.

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