Sunday, February 6, 2011

KOTransformer time! G1 Grimlock, G1 Devastator, G1 Sunstreaker and Soundwave

Sunstreaker box back
KO Sunstreaker
A couple of posts back I was showing off my KO Sunstreaker but that wasn't all that I purchased. I happened to pick up Grimlock and Devastator. I am genuinely impressed at the lengths some manufacturers go to make a high quality knock off. I would go so far as to say they are using original molds or VERY close remakes of those molds. They copy everything as good as they can. The boxes are beautiful, the materials are great and the prices are very fair considering what genuines go for. I can't speak for all knock off transformers, but whoever is producing these is doing a great job.

Grimlock KO
Grimlock back box
They are not perfect. Some boxes have "engrish" on them. For example, Grimlock's box says "Bommander" instead of Commander. Oh well. My first two KO's were Grimlock and Sunstreaker. Grimlock looked so perfect in the box that I never even opened him. Sunstreaker came a tad beat up, so I opened him and boy am I glad I did. This thing is great. I can't say enough good things about this figure. I always wanted one but could never afford a genuine G1 much less one in a mint box. So I came across these and bought them. Do I believe knocking off toys is a good thing? Depends. In my case, these knock offs have increased my interest in Transformers so I'm bringing Hasbro more money their way because these sparked my interest. Believe me, if Takara/Hasbro would release more reissues, I would buy them all up. The knockoffs are not losing them money, they are losing money because they are not selling what fans want to buy. What saddens me though is that I have a few reissues and I have to say, the knock offs are made much better. These are niche toys because they are kind of hard to get and real hardcore Transformers fans don't really buy KO's. I'm a somewhat casual (yeah ok) fan in a sense that I don't follow the storyline like a maniac but I love the aesthetics and memories of being a kid wanting these. My only complaint so far has been that the stickers are known to be very poor but you can always get repro stickers which fit perfectly.

Manual, Stickers and decoder
Would you believe they go so far as to include the manufacturer markings? Can they really be using original molds? It wouldn't seem so far fetched since most of us know there are "Lunch-Time special" figures and most toys come from China anyway. What's to stop factories from using their molds after-hours? They don't stop there, they even include the full color manual, rubsign, sticker sheet and red decoder!

Vehicle Mode
Anyways on to the toys. For Sunstreaker, I carefully cut a flap on the carded bubble (so I can later display him in boxed mode) and carefully transformed him. You have to be careful because everything is very tight. It is unbelievable how nice the plastic is on Sunstreaker. The pictures shown are with him sporting the new stickers from ReproLabels. Scores HUGE points for having ROCKET PUNCH!

Sound Recorder
Along with these two G1 knockoffs, I bought a pretty cool Soundwave. It's a knock off but it is bigger than the G1. The cassettes aren't exact duplicates since they are less articulated, but the robot seems pretty well made and has nice chrome bits. I say seems because I haven't opened it. Not ready to mutilate that nice carded package that has really cool graphics

Devastator box
Devastator Box back
My second order of KO was of none other than G1 Devastator. I don't know what it was about construction vehicles that turned into robots and then combined to form an even bigger robot, but no one can deny the awesomeness of the Constructicons. I was a little iffy on buying this set because of how complex the figure is and I assumed it would just fall apart. I was just wrong.

Again, excellent plastic and molding. They came in a bed of styrofoam like I love. Joints had diecast parts and all the figures had manufacturer markings. The chrome looks wet on these figures.

The only one I tried transforming was Long Haul.

The joints were so stiff that I chipped the figure at his knees, mores because I was to lazy to check what kind of damage I was causing form pulling so darn hard. Remember folks, if you have to force a toy, it's one of two things. It's new or your on your way to break something. Be careful! I did however combine all the Constructicons into Devastator for display. What a joy that was! I felt like a little kid again. Oh great! As I write this, I realized I forgot to get repro stickers for Devastator! Oh well, that gives me something to write about in the future. It does come with stickers, but I want really good ones. This set also includes the manual and a set of rubsigns for each Constructicon. Saving up for more so stay tuned!

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