Release Date: July 2016
Price Point: Part of the Transformers Subscription Service 4.0 ($297 for 7 figures total)
Retailer: Transformers Collector's Club
Accessories: Hand/Foot/Weapon, Blaster, Matrix of Malice
As the summer of 2016 progressed, the "Transformers Collector's Club Subscription 4.0" figures continued to reach the mailboxes of fans. The fourth figure to arrive was Windsweeper. Based on a Generation One character of the same name, this former Triggercon traded in his ability to quickly deploy weapons for the ability to combine with his fellow Mayhem Attack Squad members to form the giant Thunder Mayhem! The base figure used for this redeco has been used a few times in "Combiner Wars" already. It began life as the Aerialbot Skydive and then went on to be used as:
Check out the original Skydive review for a detailed look at this figure. The other reviews are worth checking out too if only to see how the figure was changed from one release to the other. This review will focus on the changes made to the figure for this release.
Windsweeper is packaged in a brown cardboard mailing box. Inside is a foam insert with the figure in vehicle mode. The accessories are also visible surrounding the figure. The instructions and tech specs are in a plastic bag under the foam tray. Round stickers indicating this is the fourth subscription service are used to tape the box closed.
Windsweeper comes with the same accessories as Skydive. His blaster is a long, dual barreled blaster cast in silver. His other weapon is the hand/foot/weapon piece featuring two rockets in front. This piece is cast mostly in blue with a silver hinge at the thumb. While blue does not appear on Windsweeper himself, it is a color that was used for Thunderwing (the inspiration for the Combiner "Thunder Mayhem") so the color makes sense.
The surprise accessory included with Windsweeper is the "Matrix of Malice". This is a die cast metal piece that was originally packaged with the "MP-10" version of Masterpiece Optimus Prime. The accessory has popped up here and there over the years including a G1 Galvatron reissue around the same time. This time out the Matrix has been painted gold with green in the center and sides. These colors reflect the look of the Matrix from the Marvel G1 comic books, a look that toys have largely ignored over the years. I love the look of this and while it can't be held by most figures, it looks really cool. Think of it as a bonus.
In Generation One Windsweeper transformed into a vehicle inspired by the B-1B Lancer Bomber (hence the "B-1B" mention in his tech specs). This time out he's traded that mode in for a jet mode that has influences from both the F-16 and F-18 fighter jets. Despite this change, it's pretty amazing how much the deco evokes G1 Windsweeper even though structurally the two vehicle modes are very different.
The base plastic color of this figure is a reddish brown (similar to a rufous but not as bright). This makes up most of the vehicle from the nosecone to the back. You'll see some bits of plastic that look grey with a touch of lavender peeking out from the sides. This may sound dull but thanks to some fantastic paint applications, Windsweeper actually winds up looking very cool.
Windsweeper's cockpit has been painted yellow with a metallic shine. This is a callback to G1 Windsweeper's yellow cockpit windows. The wings, while cast in brown are painted the grey-lavender color on top. The missiles and wing tips are painted silver. The top of the wings feature a purple, black and red set of details that are inspired by stickers with the same colors on the G1 toy. Also taking a cue from the G1 toy there are Decepticon symbols on top of each wing towards the middle of the jet. Look at the vertical fins in back and you'll see red and purple details painted on the sides. These are inspired by stickers on the vertical fin of G1 Windsweeper's figure. A final touch of color is a bit of black on vents that flank the back of the cockpit cover. Overall a lot of care has been taken to take details from G1 Windsweeper and bring them into this deco design and it works brilliantly.
Both of Windsweeper's weapons have 5mm pegs so they can attach to the underside of his wings or the 5mm port on top of the jet.
Transformation to Robot Mode:
- Detach all weapons and set them aside for now.
- Swing the horizontal fins up.
- Swing the robot arms out and up.
- Each arm is connected to a piece of the chest. Swing those forward.
- Pull the front halves of each lower leg forward.
- Pull the robot legs down and snap the two halves of each lower leg together.
- Split the lower legs in the middle.
- Swing the cockpit up, then swing it forward on the hinge and attach the tabs on them to the corresponding grooves on the back of the robot.
- Swing the wings back.
- Attach the weapons either to the fists or the wings for storage.
Note: on my copy of this figure the right wing popped off two different times during transformation. It snaps back on easily enough, but it is definitely not as securely attached as the original release of this figure. I had this same issue with the "G2" version of Skydive.
There was no retooling done on this figure for this release. There are some vague structural similarities to G1 Windsweeper (including angled sections on his chest and vents on top of his arms) but for the most part, the figure still looks like Skydive. A new head would have done wonders for this particular figure. This isn't a huge deal but it is definitely a missed opportunity.
This mode is a combination of the red-brown plastic and some of the grey-lavender plastic. The two colors make up alternating parts, such as the arms where the grey is on top and the brown makes up the forearms. This switching of colors from section to section helps keep the look of the figure from getting monotonous. In addition there are some nice paint applications. Like his G1 counterpart Windsweeper's face is painted orange with yellow eyes. On his chest there is a combination of silver and green colors, calling back to stickers found on G1 Windsweeper's chest. In general there was an aversion to putting any stickers or paint on the Combiner joint, so instead the Decepticon symbol is tampographed to the right side of the chest. Some of the grey-lavender color is found on the arms and lower legs. The area under the knees also has some vertical details painted purple, echoing stickers from G1 Windsweeper. Overall I like the deco on the figure but it isn't quite blowing me away the way other figures like Grabuge did.
All the joints on my copy of this figure are as tight as the G2 version of Skydive. As mentioned above his right wing has a tendency to pop off but it snaps back on easily enough.
Transformation to Arm Mode (Starting in robot mode):
- Detach all weapons.
- Transform the fist piece into the hand. Flip out the four fingers that are sculpted together, then swing the thumb up to the side you want to form.
- Swing the horizontal stabilizer fins up.
- Swing each robot arm out to the side.
- Open up the halves of the robot legs and swing them down, then reconnect them together.
- Swing the cockpit section up and back.
- Swing each wing up.
- Swing the shoulder sections up, then fold the forearms up, bending the arm at the elbow. There are notches on the outside of the forearms that align with the tabs on the underside of each wing.
- Swing the robot head down to reveal the limb connection piece.
- Attach the hand to the bottom of the feet.
The arm mode divides up the brown and grey colors nicely, with the brown on the upper arm and forearm while the grey can be found in the middle and on the sides of the shoulder area. The blue hand attached to this mode is a bit visually jarring but I trust once he is combined with the other members of the Mayhem Attack Squad the color of the fist makes much more sense.
Functionally this version of this sculpt is good in arm mode. He can hold up light to regular weapons, however a Legends Class figure in weapon mode does cause the arm to droop down, though you mileage may vary.
Transformation to Leg mode (Starting in robot mode):
- Detach all the accessories.
- Take the fist/foot piece and push in the fingers (if they're out) and swing the thumb back to form the heel.
- Swing the jet cockpit piece back.
- Swing the head back and point the connector piece up.
- Swing each rear half of the legs back, then swing the legs up on the knee hinge and reconnect the pieces together (as if you were forming the vehicle mode).
- Swing the shoulders down.
- Swing each robot arm down to the sides, connecting the notches on the forearms to the tabs on the sides of the legs.
- With the cockpit sections facing front, attach the foot piece so the rocket launcher details are facing the same way.
This mode is nice and solid thanks to all the parts basically collapsing up and in. You can attach his blaster to either wing. There are no new color reveals in this form
The Transformers Collector's Club Subscription Service 4.0 continues to impress. That said Windsweeper is one of the less successful figures in this series. I think he needed at least a new head sculpt to really distinguish this figure from its predecessors. A cool figure, and of course you'll need him if you intend to form Thunder Mayhem. If you're just selectively buying individual figures then you may want to skip this figure given its premium price.