Armada Toy Reviews: Cyclonus

in 2002, Action Figure Review, Armada, Decepticon

Armada

General Information:
Price Point: Supercon
Retailer: General (K-Mart, Toys R Us, Wal-Mart etc.)
Release Date: July 2002
Transformation Difficulty Level: 3 (Advanced)
Accessories: Crumplezone Mini-Con figure, Two missiles

Cyclonus is one of the first wave of deluxe Transformers in the Armada toy line. He comes with the Mini-Con figure, Crumplezone. Cyclonus was the name of a Generation One Transformer created by Unicron from the remains of fallen Decepticons. He is often considered one of the coolest Transformers to come out of Generation One. Although this toy bears the same name, it is a different character. This review will first cover Crumplezone as a stand alone figure and then the review of Cyclonus will describe the interaction between the two figures.

Crumplezone Review

Vehicle Mode:
Crumplezone is a tank in vehicle mode. His colors are arranged to coordinate with Cyclonus, so he is a combination of dark blue, light grey, light blue and brown. Some bright orange is thrown in on the front for simulated lights.

Despite earlier fears, the Mini-Cons are not exactly Micromasters. Crumplezone is actually a bit wider and taller than the Micromaster toys of old. The detailing has also been stepped up. Some nice detail points include:

  • Nice mechanical detailing on the plates that cover the tank treads (all molded in one piece of course)
  • A tank turret hatch cover molded into the top of the turret.
  • A grille molded into the front of the vehicle.

Crumplezone can roll on four small wheels. These wheels work suprisingly well. On a smooth surface this guy can travel a good six or seven inches before stopping. The tank turret can turn and by pressing the tab on the back of the turret you can move the cannon from side to side. This is also a key to an interactive feature with Cyclonus.

Transformation to Robot Mode:
Swing the rear of the tank down to form the robot legs. Rotate the waist around. The tank treads become the arms.

Robot Mode:
For such a small toy, Crumplezone looks top heavy. This is because of how wide his upper body looks. His chest is wide and the tread/arms add to that. However, he balances fine and does not require any effort to stand. The sculpting of this little guy is nicely done. On either side of the robot head are tubes going from the back to the chest. The chest itself has some wiring detail, and nicely enough, the Mini-Con symbol.

Crumplezone is a nicely made toy and he is fun just by himself.

Cyclonus Review

Vehicle Mode:
Cyclonus' vehicle mode is a helicoptor. His primary color is light blue. Light grey makes up most of his wings and the rear of the vehicle. His missiles, rear fins and coptor blade are all brown. Purple and silver are used for detailing while dark blue can be seen on his cockpit
and the lower guns in this form. The Decepticon symbol on his wing is painted purple. A nice coloring touch is the use of metallic silver on parts of exposed machinery. The two dark blue guns under the cockpit also have a great silver spray op on them. Although this is not a complaint, it would have been very nice if a black wash had been used on this toy. There is a lot of detail that a wash would have brought out.

The sculpt on the vehicle mode is more intricate than one might think. Almost every inch of this toy is covered in some type of detail such as vents, simulated lights, engine parts and the odd groove and line cut thrown in to add flavor to the mix. Even the coptor blade, a detail which is traditionally rather flat on most helicoptor toys is nicely detailed.

Crumplezone can be attached to Cyclonus to form a slightly different type of helicoptor (with an extended cockpit/nose rather than a flat one). With Crumplezone in tank mode, move the tank treads/arms back. Turn the tank turret around. Now flip up the dark blue cockpit on Cyclonus. Crumplezone snaps in at three points. Each tank tread/arm connects to the two blue rectangular pieces on the sides of Cyclonus' cockpit, and the brown tab that moves the tank cannon fits into the hole on the lower part of Cyclonus' cockpit area.

It's quite amazing how the addition of Crumplezone changes Cyclonus into a different type of helicoptor. Of course, this gimmick is more than just about appearance. By pulling back on the dark blue trigger on the back of the helicoptor, the blade rotates and the gun on Crumplezone moves from side to side. It does happen rather quickly so you have to watch it carefully as you do it.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Swing back the sections with the blue and silver guns. Lock them into place and swing the blue guns down.
  2. Swing down the robot lower body and rotate it around so the robot feet are pointed the same direction as the cockpit.
  3. Move the cockpit down so it forms the robot chest.
  4. Swing down the robot arms from underneath the wings.
  5. Fold the robot head up from the chest piece.

Robot Mode:
In this form, Cyclonus shows a lot more brown than the helicoptor mode. This includes his upper arms, upper legs and the cannons in his legs. His face is bright orange with neon green eyes and his fists are gold.

Cyclonus was built to look tough. That's somewhat unusual considering that many helicoptor Transformers of he past were not always that great looking in robot mode. Like the helicoptor mode, many of the details revealed in this form just beg for some type of black wash or
fine line detailing to have been done at the factory level. His legs have details ranging from circuitry to wires to rivets. The arms have wire and bolt details as well. Interesting note: the missiles in his arms are two different sculpts, with one smoother than the other.

Cyclonus has eleven meaningful points of articulation. However, Hasbro seems to be going to a design structure that falls somewhere between Generation One and the super poseable days of Beast Wars and Beast Machines. The articulation is by no means bad considering the legs each
have three points and the arms each have two. With the waist being able to turn, you can get some nice poses out of this toy. However, some people may miss the ball joints that we fans have gotten so used to the past few years.

Cyclonus interacts with Crumplezone in two ways. If you plug Crumplezone into the arms, Cyclonus fires the missiles mounted on his lower arms. Attach Crumplezone to his legs and the brown guns inside the legs spring up. If you were to attach four Mini-Cons to Cyclonus, he would be one wicked flying arsenal.

Cyclonus is a very fun toy and he is simply filled with details and features.