Release Date: March 2022
Price Point: $22.99 (depending on retailer)
Retailer: General Release (Amazon, BigBadToyStore, Entertainment Earth etc.)
Accessories: Motorcycle wheel/weapon, Energon wheel (splits into two weapons)
*BWTF would like to thank Hasbro for sending a free sample of this action figure for review. However, please note that before they sent their sample I had already purchased this figure, so this copy being reviewed was actually purchased on Amazon, but I wanted to acknowledge Hasbro's kindness and show my appreciation.
Official images and text below in italics are from Amazon:
- TRANSFORMERS PRIME-INSPIRED DESIGN: This Transformers: Legacy 5.5-inch Prime Universe Arcee robot toy is inspired by the animated series, Transformers: Prime, updated with a Generations-style design
- UNIVERSES COLLIDE: Universes continue to collide with Transformers: Legacy! This epic line of Transformers toys brings together fan-favorite characters from across the Transformers multiverse
- 2 EPIC MODES: Action figure converts from robot to motorcycle mode in 20 steps. Comes with dual-bladed wheel weapon accessory
- HARNESS THE POWER OF ENERGON: Gear up with the most powerful substance on Cybertron, Energon! This Transformers Prime Universe Arcee figure comes with 2 combining Energon blade accessories that attach in both modes
- QR CODE: Scan the QR code on each package to reveal character tech specs from across the multiverse! Collect other Legacy figures to reveal their character tech specs (each sold separately, subject to availability)
Harness the power of Energon with the Transformers: Legacy Deluxe Prime Universe Arcee robot toy! Don’t let her size fool you. Arcee is tough-as-nails, fiercely loyal, and always armed with a witty one-liner.
The Transformers Legacy packaging represents a radical update to Transformers packaging for (what is presumably) a new "trilogy" of Generations toys. For the Core Class we have already seen this design with the releases of Studio Series Ravage and Shockwave. This packaging was designed with a new ethos in mind: minimizing the amount of plastic used to be more eco-friendly. That means the "window" that reveals the toy has no plastic over it. Instead there is just an empty space. The figures no longer sit in a plastic tray. Instead they are tied to a cardboard panel. I am all for eco-friendly packaging and reducing plastic use, but some fans have expressed concern that this could lead to figures being easily stolen or damaged in box. Frankly, I cannot say this is unfounded. During one shopping trip in early 2022 I did see Core Class Ravage gone from his packaging. He had simply been torn out. Now, it's probably easier to do that with a Core Class figure than a Deluxe or Voyager, but the concern is a valid one and I will be interested to see where this design choice goes in the future.
The box art itself is pretty spectacular. The more Earth-tone colors of Kingdom have been traded up for a very retro-scifi (circa the 90's) look. The background tones are mostly purple and black and the Legacy logo just screams "Pay Attention to Me!!!" with its sharp angles and beveled letters that look like something right out of 90's toy packaging (and yes, this is what the BWTF logo circa 2022 is a homage to). On the right is the now traditional vertical Transformers logo with the Generations logo above that. Both have a "worn metal" coloring on them that really looks great. Arcee is packaged in robot mode, with a good portion of the top half of the robot showing in an open window. Her name directly calls her out as being from the "Prime Universe". The front features her in motorcycle mode while the angled side panel features her in robot mode. The back of the box features Arcee in both modes, calling out a 20 step transformation. Generally, Legacy boxes feature a QR code to scan to see the character's tech specs but in this case it is printed on the instruction booklet. I have screen captured and composited the tech spec in the gallery below.
From 2010 to 2013 Transformers Prime became the primary Transformers program on television. The show featured a smaller cast than G1, but some of the characters had roots in the original cartoon. One such character was Arcee, who was one of the key members of Optimus Prime's team. Instead of a pink scifi car, this Arcee transformed into a motorcycle and featured a blue/black/silver color scheme. It is this version of Arcee that has been reinterpreted for Legacy, similar to the way Bulkhead was given a new form for the line.
Arcee includes three accessories, but one of them is really just a part that is not attached out of the box but I'll run through all of them for the sake of being complete:
- Vehicle Mode Front End The front end of the motorcycle comes detached from the figure. It attaches to the section with the handlebars using a tab in a slot. I'll go into this section more in the vehicle mode section, but one interesting note is that the sides swing out like "wings" sitting on the back of the figure, a callout to the design of Arcee's robot mode in Transformers: Prime.
- Wheel/Weapon Intended to attach to the front of the vehicle is a wheel accessory. This piece is black plastic with silver paint and blue on the interior (which surprised me). It has a 5mm peg that attaches to the accessory that forms the front of the vehicle mode. The wheel can also split open and sit on Arcee's back. It has been speculated (partly due to a panel in an IDW Publishing comic book) that this figure may be a pretool for G2 Road Rocket hence the option to attach the wheels onto the back. This accessory can also be held in one hand as a "wheel weapon". I really think the intention is to have this accessory attach to other weapons to bulk them up and give them an interesting design embelishment more than acting as a practical weapon.
- Arm Blades: This translucent blue disc can split into two blade weapons, each with a 5mm port and peg on them. These can attach to the sides of Arcee's forearms (or she can hold them in her hands of course). This is a direct callback to blade weapons that attached to the sides of Arcee's arms in Transformers: Prime. These are also the most obviously weapon-like accessories included with this figure.
I have not yet restored my review of the Transformers: Prime action figures as of this writing, but if you want to get a good look at what Arcee's animation model would look like in toy form, check out my review and gallery of R.E.D. Arcee. You will note that her form is very thin with a lot of jagged and sharp angles. She looks like she would be formidable in a fight, both fast and fierce. However, much like Bulkhead, the designers decided to translate the appearance of a Transformers: Prime character through the lens of Generation One. While some of the spirit of the character remains, it is not a direct translation of its original appearance.
So how does this translate? I played with this figure on and off for about two days before writing this review because I wanted to sit with it and see if my initial impressions would change and for the most part, they did not change at all. In order to make this figure more G1, the designers made some of Arcee's parts thicker (including her head, torso and arms). A lot of the proportions are also more traditional than the exaggerated ones used on Prime. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of details that come right from the Prime animation model including the crest and designs on the sides of the helmet on the head. Also the shape of the torso and even the large knee armor call back to Prime Arcee. However, the face has a nose, something most Transformers Prime Autobots lacked and the face is a bit wider and not as long. This gives the figure a decidedly G1 "feel" rather than Prime. Whether or not you like this entirely depends on your point of view on such a change. Some fans will dig it, others will not. Personally, I like the way the figure looks as a G1 Arcee reinterpreted through the lens of Prime but not necesarily as Prime Arcee crossing over into another universe. I know that is a very nit picky (and yes, kind of silly) distinction, but since the packaging makes it a point to tell us this is Transformers: Prime Arcee, I think it is an important point to make.
Arcee is made up of blue, black and translucent blue plastic. Paint colors include silver and metallic pink. The pink looks really nice and I love the way the two paint colors pop against the blue and black plastic. A small red Autobot symbol can be found on her collar area which adds a nice touch to the deco.
There are twenty two points of articulation on this figure. That includes five in each arm and leg. There are 5mm ports in the fists and on the sides of the forearms, allowing you to attach accessories in different ways. There is also one on the back which is meant for the wheels but you could use it for other accessories with 5mm pegs. The panels formed from the vehicle mode front end also have 5mm ports on them, but be warned, the figure could easily become back heavy if you attach too many things and just fall over. Some experimenting is definitely in order as you attach additional accessories.
Transformation to Vehicle Mode:
- Detach all accessories and set them aside for now.
- Straighten out the arms and legs.
- Slide the blue forearm panels over the fists.
- Extend the section with the handlebars out, then rotate it around and push it over the top of the robot head.
- Reattach the windshield piece to the handlebar piece. Technically you don't have to do it this way, but the piece tended to fall off during transform so I thought it best to move the handlebar section into place, then reattach this piece.
- Rotate the waist around.
- Rotate the forearms around so the ports on them face back.
- Swing the legs and waist area up.
- Swing each robot arm down, then connect the forearms.
- Push the front of each foot against the heel pieces.
- Swing each lower leg out, then connect the tabs on the feet to the slot on the bar that forms inner part of the lower legs.
- Swing each wheel half out and forward.
- Swing the legs out to the sides, then rotate the legs forward, then swing the waist piece they are attached to forward.
- Swing the legs forward, tucking them over the robot shoulders.
- Connect the two halves of the rear wheel.
- Attach the front wheel to the handlebar section in front.
- Swing the waist armor up onto the front section of the vehicle (I failed to do this in my photos so you will see an opening in front of the piece that it is supposed to cover up in vehicle mode).
- The Energon blade weapons can be attached to the 5mm ports on the sides of the vehicle.
Like her Transformers: Prime counterpart, this version of Arcee transforms into a motorcycle. To give the overall figure a G1 aesthetic, the designers decided to take away a lot of the sharp lines and angles that so defined Arcee in Prime, and the result is a motorcycle that looks...fine, but not particularly interesting. I think the two things that really "dulled" the look of the vehicle are the front end and the panels on the sides. The front is very rounded now with lights sculpted into it. It looks good, don't get me wrong. It just doesn't look particulary interesting. This same feeling carries over to the panels on the sides. In Prime, Arcee had larger panels that covered up a good amount of the robot mode bits and came to sharp looking edges. Here the piece is much smaller and while angled, it is not as sleek or dynamic looking. There are some nice details in this mode including the sculpting of the handlebars and various meters behind the windshield. This is a perfectly good motorcycle vehicle mode, I just don't find it very dynamic looking.
This mode mostly shows off the blue and black colors from the robot mode. The windshield is translucent blue, which looks really nice. I also appreciate the small orange light details painted onto the front section. The orange paint was a tad sloppy on my copy of this figure but I am not too bothered by it.
From a functional standpoint, there is a kickstand to help the vehicle stay upright, but I find if I just have it rotated down the vehicle actually tips over the other way, so I have to swing it forward or back a bit to have the vehicle stay upright. The seat has the 5mm ports from the forearms and the sides of the vehicle also has 5mm ports to attach her blade weapons.
I would not blame you if you felt like I was very down on this figure, but I'm not. It is a perfectly good representation of Arcee, and it has an interesting transformation to boot. Considering a Transformers: Prime Arcee can easily run you over $50 USD on ebay, this makes for a perfectly good substitute. Recommended if you're a completist or need a Prime Arcee to join your ranks at a (relatively) low price.
- Good sculpt that presents some interesting redeco possibilities.
- Good deco with nods to Prime Arcee.
- Good articulation.
- Fun transformation scheme.
- For my tastes this figure has lost too much of the Prime aesthetic and leans too much into G1.
- The Energon Blade weapons are a nice idea but kind of dull looking.
- The windshield accessory/section comes off too easily for my liking. It reconnects easily, but I wish it would stay permanently attached.