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Master Mind Creations: Knight Morpher.


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Okay, yes, this is another one of those situations where they call it Knight Morpher, but everyone who actually buys the damn thing knows it's really Optimus Prime. More specifically, it's Optimus Prime from a comic series that he wasn't even in... confused yet?

Hearts of Steel was a comic mini-series published in 2006 by the current holder of the Transformers comic license, IDW Publishing. It's supposed to be the first in a series of "what if...?" style alternate reality stories where the Transformers awoke on Earth during different technological eras, the moniker for the overall series is supposedly Evolutions. It's been four years, and we're still waiting on news of any more stories. Hearts of Steel takes place in the Steam era, and thus, most of the alternate modes the Transformers take to blend in are locomotives and the like. Optimus Prime actually doesn't appear in that storyline at all, although there was concept art for him, which is where this toy comes from.

Enough background, onto the toy itself: First off, I was surprised by by just how big it actually was, I was expecting something about the size of Classics Optimus Prime, but this is a little larger than the current Voyagers from the movie lines. It's made out of solid plastic, with some nice detailed paint applications.

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Size comparison.

The back half of the locomotive opens up almost identically to the trailer of Generation 1 Prime, and features a large cannon which can swivel, aim up or down, and slide forward and back on the platform.

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The smokestack transforms into a blaster which can be mounted on top of the cannon or held by Prime.

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There's also a hitch piece underneath, which can be rotated to either extend a hole or a peg, I'm not sure what they had in mind when they designed it, but I'm too lazy to dig through my various Prime trailers and see if it fits any of them.

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The last trick up the trailer's sleeve is that it holds a set of alternate hands for Prime, more on those later.

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The transformation was interesting, but not very difficult, with the exception of his arm, which have two joints: the actual elbow joint, and a joint used only for transformation. The latter is extremely stiff and required a very high amount of pressure before it would move. Also, there's a clip that holds the arms in place during vehicle mode, and there's not really a clear way for it to be disengaged. Both of these add up to making me afraid that I'll break it sometime, if they don't loosen up.

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All in all he's a pretty good robot, unmistakably Prime. I was a little put off by some of the promotional shots which showed more of a candy red, but as you can see in the comparison show with Classics Prime, it's actually much darker.

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In theory he should be every bit as posable as Classics Prime, but something always seems to get in the way, or his joints are just too stiff to really do anything really dynamic looking.

Here's the blaster:

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If you pull apart the barrel on the cannon, you can assemble two more pieces of equipment for him.

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First a lance, which no noble knight should be without.

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As well as a jetpack which I somehow forgot to take a picture of.

Here he's holding the lance as well as his shield which is hidden at the front of the conductor's booth on the train.

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The shield can either be wielded in a hand, or mounted to a forearm.

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I mentioned that he comes with two sets of hands, one allows him to have an angled grip which is shown in the first pic, and the other is a more traditional straight 90 degree grip that any toy fan will be familiar with.

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To start with, the fists are very snugly secured, the only I managed to eventually remove them was by putting the blaster in his hand, and then using it to get leverage to pull the hand out. Only to discover a toy collectors worst nightmare:

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The fists aren't held in by ball joints, or simple pegs, but rather the slotted tension pegs that any child of the 80s should recognize as the "it either didn't hold it in, or it broke off" pegs. Needless to say, I don't think I'll be swapping fists very much.
Of course no Optimus Prime with any clout is ever caught dead without having a Matrix of Leadership hidden in his chest.

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Lastly is this curious little item, it looks like it's supposed to be a flip down visor, to complete the knight aesthetic, but there's now way to attach it to his head, I place it on a couple of times, but it never lasted long enough for me to take a picture.

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Final thoughts? He's cool, he's expensive, I like him. That said, he does have a few glaring flaws. So only pick him up if you really like the look of him, or just can't bear to live without every representation of Prime, official or otherwise.

Comments

  1. He looks very slick!!! I think the figure came out very well. Now they should make a comic book based off of the toy that was based off an idea for a comic book.

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