Toy Review: "Titans Return" Chaos on Velocitron Laser Prime Toy Review
Release Date: March 2017
Price Point: $99.99 (in a boxed set with Fastclash, Laser Prime, Nautica & Rodimus Prime)
Retailer: Toys R Us Exclusive
Accessories: Sword & Blaster (Laser Prime), Blaster & Shield (Nautica), Blasters x 2 (Quickswitch)
Very early on in the life of the Transformers line the toy line began to move away from the sole gimmick of transformation. Once figures like Combiners were introduced it became clear Transformers could be more than just a robot that changed from one form to another. In 1987 Hasbro and Takara took a bold step into a new play pattern by introducing Headmasters. Headmasters were Transformers whose heads detached and became smaller figures that could then pilot or ride the Transformers in beast and vehicle forms (or in a couple cases, their battle station or city forms!). Now almost thirty years after they were originally introduced the Headmaster gimmick has returned in a new form: Titan Masters!
Titan Masters focuses on the return of small robots to Cybertron that can unlock incredible power, and it is up to the Transformers to merge with them and harness those abilities and strengths. In some ways the story resembles "Armada" which had a similar conceit for the Mini-Cons.
With the success of both "Combiner Wars" and "Titans Return" in mind, Hasbro looked to the example of boxed sets such as Computron and Liokaiser as inspiration to create a group of exclusive boxed sets for "Titans Return". Like those boxed set this set features exclusive redecos and retools of previous figures, but this set has the added bonus of a (roughly) Legends Class figure not available anywhere else! "Chaos on Velocitron" features five characters:
- Fastclash: a new figure based on the G1 Autobot Clone, Fastlane
- Laser Prime: a redeco of Voyager Class Optimus Prime
- Nautica: a redeco and retool of Deluxe Class Blurr
- Quickswitch: a redeco and retool of Leader Class Sixshot
- Rodimus Prime: a redeco and retool of Titan Master Ptero
"Chaos on Velocitron' is packaged in a large boxed set that is reminiscent of the "Combiner Wars" boxed sets in design. The box features striking artwork of all five characters charging forward (with Rodimus Prime amusingly riding on Optimus Prime's back!). The artwork is gorgeous and striking. The lower left hand section shows each character included in the set in the same style as the "Combiner Wars" sets. The back has a grey background with a grid on top. All the characters shown are renders, not actual toy photographs.
Inside the box, the figures are mostly in vehicle mode sitting in a large plastic tray. The figures are mostly held down with small plastic stretch ties. The Titan Masters are lined up along the top in robot mode. Included with the set is an 11x17" print featuring the artwork from the front of the box. The back of the print features the tech specs for each character in the set. Oddly, the tech specs do not mention the names of the Titan Masters for any of the characters. We can of course assume Optimus Prime is paired with Diac, but we do not know the names for Nautica and Quickswitch's Titan Masters. The print is similar to the prints included with the "Combiner Wars" boxed sets. Unfortunately, in what appears to be a cost saving move, the print is not in a protective envelope, so be careful how you remove the tray as it could bend the print. In the same plastic bag as the instructions you will also find a trading card also featuring the boxed set's artwork.
This figure is based on Voyager Class Optimus Prime, a homage to the Generation 2 "Laser Optimus Prime" figure. I go in depth on this base sculpt in my Voyager Class Optimus Prime review, so check that out. This review will focus on changes made to the figure for this release.
Optimus Prime includes two accessories, both of which are based on the weapons that came with "Generation 2" Laser Optimus Prime. The blaster is a dual barreled weapon. The design resembles the G2 weapon down to the barrels having a front sight on the top of each end and an angled section at the back. This blaster is one solid piece (not two as many Titan Master weapons are). It is cast in all black plastic with no paint. There are three 5mm pegs on the weapon. Two on the sides and one on the bottom. The top section is hollowed out to serve as a seat for Titan Master figures.
The other weapon is a sword. Like the G2 Laser Optimus Prime's sword it has a wide hilt that angles up at the top. There are lots of beautiful line details etched into this weapon. It really looks cool. The weapon is cast in translucent blue plastic with no paint details. The handle is a 5mm peg and there is an additional peg on the side.
Diac is not named on the packaging for this boxed set, but the sculpt is the same as the Diac Titan Master figure included with Voyager Class "Titans Return" Optimus Prime so it is safe to assume they are the same character.
This release of Diac is cast in light blue and silver plastic. The head mode uses silver paint on the crest, nose and mouthplate. The rest of the figure is unpainted. Most of the light blue plastic shows in head mode, with only Diac's actual head cast in blue for the robot mode.
All the joints on Diac are still nice and tight. He also attaches to Optimus Prime's body without a problem, so no worries about the tooling wearing down just yet.
Optimus Prime's robot mode features several of the key details from G2 Laser Optimus Prime. These include:
- The shoulder armor has two pylons that come up past the height of the head. Each pylon has two circles on it. As a kid I always imagined these were rocket launchers on G2 Laser Optimus Prime.
- A faux truck grille is found on the center of the torso. Flanking that are two partial oval details.
- The waist section has a notch in the middle between the two legs.
- The top of the thighs are circles with a raised tab on top.
- The lower legs have a distinct design with raised knee armor, two wheels on the sides and feet with a small raised notch on top.
As a homage it works very well. Anyone familiar with "Laser Optimus Prime" will instantly see the design similarities and it's cool to have an Optimus Prime figure based on something other than the original G1 version.
The first release of this sculpt had some color homages to G2 Laser Prime, but this figure is the true homage. The primary colors on this figure are grey, red, black and light blue. These are all primary colors on G2 Laser Prime, though the blue on Laser Prime was a darker shade than the one used here. The color layout is also very similar, with grey on the shoulders, torso, waist and thighs, red on the forearms and black on the lower legs.
Some of the deco on this figure is also inspired by the G1 figure. His knees are painted red, based on red stickers on the G2 Laser Prime's knees. Grey paint is used on the waist/hip area to have it mach up with the grey plastic and finally there are stickers on his chest "windows" that say "Optimus" on one and "Prime" on the other with horizontal lines under them. This is directly inspired by G2 Laser Prime. Overall the deco looks good and faithful to the original, though I would have liked to see some deco on the shoulder to match up with the stickers on G2 Laser Prime's shoulders.
There are twenty one points of articulation on this figure. That includes five points on each arm and leg and the ability of the head to turn side to side. If you have the extra antennae up, the entire platform the head sits on moves instead. Most of the joints are fairly tight, including the hip joints which appear to have been tightened up since the original release. They do not have any of the looseness that the first Voyager Class Optimus Prime figure did. The panel that activates the "antennae" that pop up on either side of the head still work great with no issues.
Transformation to Truck Mode:
- Detach Diac, transform him to robot mode and set him aside for now.
- Detach the weapons and set them aside for now.
- Rotate the shoulder pieces around.
- Swing the fists into the forearms.
- Rotate the forearms so the top of the forearms face outward.
- Swing the tops of the shoulders down.
- On the back of the figure bring the various fins of the plane mode's rear stabilizer together, then swing this piece onto the section where the head was.
- Swing both arms up and bring them together (the fin piece winds up in between them).
- Swing the robot chest piece up.
- On each leg swivel the part with the feet attached out and swing the feet in, then move the pieces back into place so the wheels face outward.
- Swing the plane wings down and rotate the wings around so they come together in the middle between the robot legs.
- Slide the robot legs (at the hip area) back.
- Swing the panels on the sides of the lower legs forward and snap them into place in the middle.
- The weapons can be attached to the 5mm ports on the sides of the trailer.
- Diac can sit in the cockpit section on the top of the trailer.
G2 Laser Optimus Prime was one of the first Optimus Prime toys to transform into a long nose style truck instead of a truck with a flat front. Also he was an oil tanker instead of a cargo truck. With those elements in mind this new iteration of Optimus Prime transforms into a long nose oil tanker. The vehicle had a lot of fun details including steps on the sides of the cab section, smokestacks, lights and horn details on the top of the cab and even an Autobot shaped section right above the grille. The trailer section also has a nice assortment of details including cage like details on the sides and hatches on the top towards the front. Overall I really love the sculpt.
This time out, the deco on this figure is heavily based on the G2 Laser Prime figure. This mode mostly shows off black plastic, with some translucent blue plastic on top and grey plastic peeking out here and there. The best deco point on this figure is found in the cab section. Around the windshield and on the hood is black bleeding into the red with a nice spray op. The windows are painted light blue. Silver is used on the smokestacks, the sides and the grille. Red paint is found on the cages on the sides.
The biggest deco/detail are huge stickers that are used on the sides of the tanker section. These feature Optimus himself blasting fire and the name "Optimus Prime" in the back. These stickers are foil with colros on top. They are also directly based on similar stickers on G2 Laser Prime. There has been a lot of criticism of these stickers and rightfully so. Not because they are stickers, but because on some copies of this figure the stickers are not applied very well, so there are bubbles in the middle here and there. On my copy I am very satisfied with how the stickers are applied. The edges needed some pressing, but they have not come off after many transformations and months on display. Your results may vary so be warned.
There are two 5mm ports on the sides of the trailer that allow you to attach the weapons. One fun thing you can do is attach the weapon using a side-peg so a Titan Master can sit in it. On the top of the figure is a translucent blue panel that can swing up to serve as a seat for a second Titan Master! Overall this is a nice mode that looks good and has some fun play value.
Transformation to Airplane Mode (from Robot Mode)
- Detach Diac and transform him into robot mode.
- Detach the weapons and set them aside.
- Swing each fist into the forearm.
- Rotate the shoulder pieces around then swing them down.
- Rotate the forearms out so the tops face outward.
- Swing each of the robot arm segments up a few notches to get them out of the way for now.
- Swing the chest panel up over the area where the head would attach.
- Swing the rear fins down and swing the side fins out.
- Swing the wings out and extend them out.
- Slide the legs at the thighs back.
- On each leg, rotate the sections connected to the feet, swing in the feet, then rotate the sections back around so the wheels are facing each other instead of the sides of the legs.
- On the inside of each lower leg, swing out the front halves of the airplane, then rotate the cockpit halves around.
- Connect the two lower leg halves together.
- Swing each of the panels on the sides of the lower legs back to complete forming the front half of the vehicle.
- The weapons can be attached to the sides of the vehicle.
Even with new colors, this mode is still one odd looking jet mode. The truck pieces in the back, the somewhat short wings and the obvious wheels make for one strange looking plane. Still, I can totally understand how the designers had to work within certain cost limitations and I consider this more of a "bonus" mode than the "main" alt mode.
This mode is mostly made up of bits from both of the other modes showing in different ways. The wings (which were on the back of the robot mode) are grey. The cockpit section is grey with blue window stickers. The tail and stabilizers are also grey. The rest of the details all mostly come from the other modes. The mode looks okay, but it's not the best of the three for sure.
You can attach weapons to the 5mm ports on the sides of the cabin section. The translucent blue panel towards the back can be opened up to seat a Titan Master. If you attach his blaster to the side you can have another Titan Master sit in it as well.
This version of this sculpt looks great (at least in robot and truck mode). It does a good job of paying homage to G2 Laser Optimus Prime, but the triple changing gimmick works more against it than for it. As part of a larger boxed set this piece is a good deal, but had it been a solo release I would not have recommended it except at discount.
- Great interpretation of G2 Laser Optimus Prime's robot mode.
- Good truck mode.
- The deco pays homage to the original G2 Laser Prime very well.
- Good play value.
- There are reports of badly applied stickers right out of the box.
- Airplane mode is not very convincing.
- The wing transformation can be very fiddly thanks to the various joints involved in its transformation.