"Robots in Disguise" (2015) One Step Changer Grimlock Toy Review

in 2015, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Dinobot, One Step Changer, Prime, Robots in Disguise (2015)

Robots in Disguise (2015)

Grimlock General Information:
Release Date: February 2015
Price Point: $9.99 (Varies by retailer)
Retailer: General Release (Toys R Us, K-Mart, Target etc.)
Accessories: None


*Images and text below from Amazon.com:
The One-Step Changers are 2-in-1 speed-changers, and your Grimlock figure is one of them! He's the same savage dino as always, but he converts in just 1 step from dino mode to robot mode and back. Can his Decepticon enemies keep up? Not with you in charge! Transformers and all related characters are trademarks of Hasbro.

The One Step Changers were introduced in the "Age of Extinction" toy line as a simplified alternative to larger, more complex Transformers figures. The name is a bit of a misnomer in some cases but for the most part, a majority of the transformation is accomplished in one movement. The second wave of "Robots in Disguise" One Step Changers hit stores in February of 2015 and included Grimlock, the largest and possibly most powerful member of the Autobot team in "Robots in Disguise".

Like the "Age of Extinction" One Step Changers, these are packaged in bubbles on small cards. The figure itself is packaged in Beast Mode. Artwork is on the left side and the Transformers logo is on the right. The back does not feature any tech specs information, instead using the space for the instructions and multi-language legal information. It's a shame but Hasbro seems to be refocusing any efforts at more traditional packaging into the "Generations" segment, which I get since I'm guessing they're assuming most of the kids getting these will wind up just throwing out the packagin.

Beast Mode:
One Step Changers are engineering challenges, no doubt. With larger Transformers that have several steps to their transformation, you have a lot of options as to where parts can swing out or disappear to in one form versus another. One Step Changers don't always have that luxury when the focus is a simplified transformation - especially if you are trying to model your toy after a cartoon. Grimlock is an example of a figure where the demands of being a One Step Changer overwhelmed the design. His beast mode is easily identifiable as a T=Rex inspired creature (though I maintain the head design and tail design make him more akin to the 1998 "Godzilla" aka "GINO" Godzilla-in-name-only). However, a lot of design compromises wound up getting tossed in to make the One Step changing gimmick work. First, his upper beast mode legs and his beast mode arms are connected via a bar (this is part of the transformation). This means his arms are stuck constantly pointing downward, which looks a tad awkward. In my mind I can't stop seeing Grimlock looking like he's doing some type of dance. On top of this, the robot mode legs are very obviously sticking out in the back on either side of the tail. Overall, the sculpt is a bit of a mess and looks more like Grimlock is in mid-transformation rather than full beast mode.

Grimlock is cast in green, black and silver plastic. Green and black are the main colors with silver used on the sides and arms as well as the feet. Silver paint is used on his snout and the beast mode hands/claws. An Autobot symbol meant to be scanned for the online app sits on his left shoulder. A bit of green paint appears on the robot leg sections that flank the tail. The paint applications are rather sparse, but they do add to the toy's visual appeal a tiny bit.

The only real "action feature" and articulation in this form centers around the mouth. The lower jaw can swing open and shut, revealing the sculpted tongue underneath. The claws on the legs can brend too, so if you're feeling generous you can count them as points of articulation as well.

Transformation to Robot Mode:
Hold on to the top of each leg, then swing it forward. While you do this, the head will fold down, the tail will swing back and the robot legs will straighten out. Fold the beast mode claws from the foot piecs down. Then rotate each robot hand at the wrist. Reverse everything to turn it back to beast mode.

Robot Mode:
As with the beast mode, the robot mode looks awkward. A lot of the bulk from the beast mode winds up forming the torso, resulting in a a really thick central body with huge tubes (the beast mode arms) on either side of the torso. His arms are huge too, but then when you get to the lower body his legs are out of proportion, looking smaller than they should be.

The design of the robot mode isn't a total loss. There are some nicely sculpted parts including the head, some details on the lower legs and arms. His claw hands have a scary look to them that suits battling other figures.

All the beast mode colors carry over here. Much of this mode is black plastic with large silver sections thanks to the beast mode arms on the torso and the hands. His face is painted orange with blue eyes. Green paint is used on the forearms and lower legs. The chest is left unpainted making kind of look like a dark void in the center.

Grimlock's arms can be moved up and down and you can swivel his wrists. That's pretty much it for articulation.

Final Thoughts:
While there are some good aspects of this figure (sculpting in beast mode, an interesting transformation) the overall package is just not worth the price. Not recommended.