Dark of the Moon Track Battle Roadbuster Toy Review

in 2012, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Dark of the Moon, Deluxe, Generation One, MechTech, Wal-Mart Exclusive, Wreckers

Dark of the Moon

General Information:
Release Date: October 2011
Price Point: $12.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: Wal-Mart Exclusive
Accessories: Blaster/Assault Saw weapon

Images:

As part of its many (many) "Dark of the Moon" redecos, Wal-Mart put out "Track Battle Roadbuster" in late 2011. NASCAR race cars are seen in a variety of colors making a virtual rainbow of colors dashing across the race track. This figure takes the Deluxe Roadbuster figure, so check out that review. This review will focus on the changes made to the figure for this review.

It should be noted that this figure was a Wal-Mart exclusive in any area that has a Wal-Mart. In other countries this wound up being a part of the fifth regular wave of "Dark of the Moon" figures.

Mech Tech Weapon:
Unlike some other redecos, there has been no swap out of Mech Tech weapons with this redeco. The blaster/chainsaw weapon is now cast in dark grey and red plastic. The dark grey makes up most of the weapon with the joints inside and the trigger cast in red. The saw blade pieces are painted a bright orange, aligning with one of the primary colors of Track Battle Roadbuster himself. It's a really sharp contrast between the two colors and I like the way the neon color almost gives an "energy" like glow to the saw blades.

The weapon's transformation works perfectly well. I still wish the weapons would lock but given this is a straightup redeco that's a minor point.

Vehicle Mode:
The deco on this vehicle mode is really the shining feature of the figure. It's here that most of the product sponsors and paint all come together to form a very realistic looking vehicle. The colors are a sharp contrast to the original version of the figure. Whereas the first version's green and white colors formed a rather dark looking figure, the orange plastic on this figure dominates and really makes it bright looking. Contrasting with the orange is black plastic on the wheels and a dark smokey translucent plastic on the windows. The whole figure just pops out at you visually and really distinguishes itself from its predecessor.

the main paint color that wraps around the vehicle from the front to the sides is white. A bit of white is used on the front end to paint the Chevrolet logo. Silver is used on the headlights while the rear lights are painted a deeper orange than the plastic the figure is cast in. The feature details on this figure are the words/logos plastered all over it. Let's run down the list:

  • On the front end is the word "IMPALA" in bold black letters right under the grille.
  • The hood has a black, orange and white "amp Energy Juice" logo on it complete with the flame on top.
  • On both doors towards the front are small black Sprint logos.
  • Each door has a large red and black "88" on it, referring to Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s Daytona vehicle number.
  • Another, much smaller "amp" logo in orange and black is set right near the rear wheels on either side.
  • The top of the vehicle has a gigantic "88" painted on it in black and white.
  • Over the driver's side window is Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s signature in white.
  • On both sides behind the rear wheels is a small National Guard logo complete with the US Flag next to the word "National". This logo is done in red, black and blue.
  • On the back of the vehicle, right near the rear window is another, larger National Guard logo in red, black, white and blue.

I think the deco on this figure looks brilliant. It's a fun looking figure with plenty of "real life" styled details that are all very recognizable.

All of Roadbuster's functionality is intact including the ability to connect a Mech Tech weapon on the top of the vehicle and the ability to swing his missile pods out to the sides.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Pull the sides of the vehicle out, revealing the robot arms.
  2. Swing the rear section of the vehicle up.
  3. Swing the robot legs out from the underside of the vehicle.
  4. Separate the panel that the robot head is attached to from the hood of the car.
  5. Rotate the panel around on its central hinge so the pieces of the hood section with the headlights face forward.
  6. Push the front section of the car up, then swing up the hood piece.
  7. Push the section with the chest armor and head in, connecting it to the piece located right under the cabin section.
  8. Rotate the lower robot legs around and swing the robot feet up.
  9. On each arm there is a small hinged piece right near the wheel, swing that piece out. Be careful as this piece pops off very easily.
  10. On each arm, swing up the green piece to cover the shoulders.
  11. Rotate the head around so it faces front.
  12. Swing out each of the missile pods.
  13. Attach the weapon to his arm.

Robot Mode:
Most of the newly revealed robot mode components in this mode are dark grey, the same as the weapon. Some of the smaller joints and bits like the elbows are cast in black. There's not a whole lot of paint used on this figure in this form, but honestly I'm okay with that. The orange and white colors are so bright against the grey that it would almost be too much if there were tons of other colors all over the figure. That's not to say there isn't any paint detail. The head has a white stripe going down the top of the helmet section while the face is painted silver. The front of the thighs have white details on them with an Autobot symbol painted red on the right side. The knee armor is painted orange. Overall it's a fairly simple color scheme but it works well by its use of contrast.

All of the joints on the figure are nice and tight. Indeed, I think the hinges that connect the missile pods to the main body are actually a bit tighter on this figure than on my Roadbuster. The weapon still attaches to both arms without a problem. Functionally speaking it's all good.

Final Thoughts:
This is a cool redeco that manages to stay with the theme of the original figure while still creating something completely different in the process. As exclusive redecos go I think this was well thought out, and if you didn't get the first version of the figure I'd say go for this one. If you're a completist of course you'll want both.