"Beast Machines" Megatron Toy Review


The leader of the Predacons in Beast Wars returns as the ruler of Cybertron and the Vehicons! He is Megatron, and he's back in an all new toy. For the sake of this review, let me first say that like everyone else, I was very disappointed in the size of this toy. Megatron is packaged as a "mega" sized toy. That places him in the same bracket as Tankor, Cheetor, B'Boom and Scorponok. Yet somehow he looks so small compared to them, it would not be hard to imagine this toy as a deluxe. Although the size issue was a deciding factor in my review, it is reflected by the end grade I gave this toy. The following review however details my feelings regarding Megatron as a toy - not focusing on the size but rather what the toy does have to offer.

Beast Mode:
In beast mode, Megatron is a dragon. This mode is carried over from the Transmetal 2 form he had in the Beast Wars line. This toy is a completely different mold and design, but has visual similarities to the Transmetal 2 toy in dragon mode. His primary color is red, with gold and black paint details. Silver is used on the beast mode head's teeth and nose. Translucent orange plastic is used for his tail and dragon head horns. The color mixture is very nice looking.

Instead of the wings that the Transmetal 2 toy had, Megatron has several partitions on hinges that later become his cloak. It is a bit of a stretch to call them wings from a distance, but up close examination one can see definite organic looking "tubes" separating each portion of the wings and within the wings themselves are details that look like veins on the dragon wings. The addition of the two metallic purple claws on the wings is a nice touch.

In this mode, Megatron has twenty two points of articulation. Keep in mind that eight of those points are the hinges on his cloak/wings and the two claws attached to them. Megatron's primary action feature is the dragon neck and head. Unlike the rubbery Transmetal 2 dragon neck, this one is made up of several joints. This allows for some nice poses rather than having a rubbery neck flopping around.

Unfortunately, the hinge mechanism that connects the rear cloak/wing section to the body of the dragon is a bit weak, and the dragon arms are attached to this part. The result is the cloak/wing section sometimes moving back a bit, causing the dragon arms to look like they're separating from the main body.

Although it may be my own, Megatron's cloak/wings have a tendency to fold forward, making them look rather uneven. However, I do not know if this is a problem with all the toys or just this run.

Overall, the beast mode is not quite as grand looking as the Transmetal 2 dragon, it is much skinnier and the cloak/wing problem can become annoying after a while. An okay beast mode.

Transformation to Robot Mode:
Begin Megatron's transformation by swinging the legs out to the sides, disconnecting them from the dragon waist/tail section. Move the claws on his cloak/wings down. Swing the tail forward and then rotate the main body around so the gold "arrow" designs on his chest point to the left and right. Swing up the translucent orange tail to reveal his right hand. The dragon neck and head serves as his left arm. Take the two legs and connect them together to create the robot legs and waist. Swing the chest piece forward and flip up the red flap. Swing Megatron's robot head out and then fold the flap in. Swing the chest piece back into place. Now lower the cloak/wing section and fold the dragon arms at the elbow hinge, and swing them in so they become Megatron's abdominal area (filling in the gap between his chest and waist). Megatron is now in robot mode!

Robot Mode:
In robot mode, Megatron clearly influenced the look of Megatron the television show. His color scheme remains the same except for the addition of more silver and metallic blue from his robot head. His head does look like the head used on the Beast Machines show, complete with the grill over his mouth. Despite being based on the Transmetal 2 Megatron however, this is clearly a different body mold. Megatron's Spark is in a nice location. Flip open the red and blue panel on his chest to see it.

In this mode, Megatron has twenty one points of articulation. Six of these points are on the cloak/wing section while five are in the dragon head arm. One obstruction is Megatron's beast mode tail. It does fold back a bit in this mode, but overall it gets in the way. It may have been better to have it detach and act as a weapon, or detach and clip onto his back to stay out of sight.

Transformation to Cloaked Mode:
Straighten Megatron's arms and legs. Now fold the cloak/wings forward until they cover all of Megatron except for the head and feet. Connect the pegs on the right side to the holes on the left side of the cloak/wings.

Cloaked Mode:
This is a unique mode in that it really serves no purpose except perhaps to shield Megatron from enemy fire. Fans of the show will of course recognize this as the form Megatron uses when controlling his Vehicon hordes, minus the wires and arms that connect to him on the television show. He is of course, mostly dark grey in this mode (the color of the cloak/wings). However, the front of the cloak has a nice translucent plastic detailing on both sides. That along with the details on the rest of the cloak make Megatron look a lot more mechanical.

Overall, Megatron is a nice toy. He is fun to play with and transform, and he looks pretty cool. I do recommend him if you are willing to spend the money. However, keep in mind that at $15.99 or more (depending on your store's prices), you may be disappointed with what you get. If not for the size in relation to the price point, this toy would receive a much higher grade. C+

Updated Thoughts (January 2, 2022):
As I fiddled with this figure to take the updated photos in this review I honestly felt a bit frustrated.  The gimmick on the robot arm affects the articulation on the dragon head.  The dragon tail on the other arm also gets in the way.  Even at a Mega price point back in the day I feel the designers could have done better with this one (just look at previous Mega figures such as B'Boom from a transformation and articulation standpoint).  This is not one of the highlights of the line and to this day I think it would have been better off as an Ultra.

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