"Generations" Power of the Primes Windcharger Toy Review

in 2017, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Generation One, Generations, Legends, Mini-Bot, Power of the Primes

Generations

Power of the Primes

Beachcomber General Information:
Release Date: November 2017
Price Point: $9.99 (depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
Accessories: None

Official images are from and text below in italics are from the Official Hasbro web site. Windcharger is available for purchase (at the time this is being written) from: BigBadToyStore and Captured Prey:
The Autobots and Decepticons use Prime Masters to wield the incredible powers of the legendary bots who shaped the universe: the Primes. Prime Masters carry the spark of a Prime, allowing them to share a Prime's godlike ability with other bots. How will the decisive Autobot warrior wield this epic power? Anything is possible and everything is at stake when the Power of the Primes is unleashed!

Transformers Generations Power of the Primes Legends Class figures are 3.75-inch-scale figures. When this Legends Class Windcharger figure is in sports car mode, Prime Master figures fit inside. Prime Master figures are each sold separately. Subject to availability.

Windcharger was one of Optimus Prime's original Ark crewmembers as shown in Generation One. He was also one of the original G1 Mini-Bots, making him a perfect choice to turn into a Legends Class figure. Though not as popular as other characters like Bumblebee, Windcharger has popped up here and there over the years. There was a Scout Class figure in "Reveal the Shield", an Alternator and of course the more recent "Combiner Wars" Legends Class version. While many of these versions reflected aspects of his G1 appearance, this figure is the first to really use the G1 comic book and cartoon model as its core design inspiration.

Packaging:
Windcharger is packaged in blister card style packaging. The card features the "Transformers" logo in the front against a black background with the "Generations" logo above that. Most of the card is taken up by Windcharger's artwork with a smaller "Transformers" logo on top, almost like a watermark. This is all new artwork based on the figure in the packaging. The art is colored in a beautifully painted fashion that recalls the artwork from G1 toy packaging but more dynamic, with Windcharger in a running pose. The figure is in robot mode inside the bubble with a collector's card behind him. The insert in front shows a photo of the figure in vehicle mode with the name "Windcharger" printed next to an Autobot symbol. The back of the packaging features a grey grid with CG renders of the figure on top in both modes. Overall it's really cool packaging and I'm happy the art features so prominently.

The "Power of the Primes" figures from Legends Class up come with collectors cards. However, unlike the "Titans Return" cards which featured tech spec stats, these focus on what ability the character gets if they connect to a specific Prime Master Spark. This means there are thirteen potential card variations per character (one for each Prime)! In my copy of the Windcharger figure it indicates he can Power-Link with Micronus to get an "acceleration" ability.

Robot Mode:
Like his fellow case mate Beachcomber, Windcharger uses the G1 design as the primary reference for this new figure. This is not a redeco or retool of any previous figure, it is a brand new sculpt. The details inspired by G1 Windcharger include:

  • The head is trapezoid in shape with a face that sticks out of the "helmet" section. Instead of the "mouthplate" face from the original G1 toy, this has the face from the G1 animated series including two eyes, a nose and mouth. What may strike some as odd is how the face sticks out of the helmet instead of being inside of it.
  • The torso has a rectangular strip in the middle with angled parts on either side. These are callbacks to the way G1 Windcharger's chest sticks out a bit and the rectangular opening on his chest in the G1 toy and cartoon model.
  • From the top the shoulders angle downward in a nod to the angled "C" shape on G1 Windcharger's shoulders.
  • The waist area has a piece in the middle that looks like two trapezoids stacked on top of one another.
  • The lower legs each have a series of horizontal lines on them representing a cover on the back of the rear windows in vehicle mode.

The details don't stop there however. There are some extra greebles here and there on the figure that you will not find on G1 Windcharger. These include some beveled line details on the arms and thighs. The only thing I am not crazy about is the tab on the fists. These facilitate the transformation to robot mode, but they do look a bit awkward in this mode. Some fans have called out the very obvious gap when looking at the figure from the profile view, but personally it does not bother me. I do not stare at my figures from the side much, but I concede it does make the torso look less "full" and bulky.

Windcharger is cast in red, grey and black plastic. The color layout is based on the G1 toy and cartoon model. The red is found on the arms, lower legs and back. Meanwhile the grey is focused on the head and torso. His legs and face are painted silver, a callback to the G1 toy. The eyes are painted light blue. Metallic black paint is used on the lower legs and torso to provide some additional detail (and callbacks to G1 Windcharger). You will see some red paint on the doors connected to the forearms. The finishing touch is a silver and red Autobot symbol tampographed onto the middle of the torso. The silver backing is a nice touch as it recalls the G1 Windcharger's sticker which was a silver, foil sticker. The deco is true to the G1 version of the character and it looks great.

Transformation to Vehicle Mode:

  1. Straighten out the arms and legs.
  2. Lift the back panel then swing it up over the back of the robot head.
  3. Push the arms into the sides.
  4. On each foot, swing out the heel pieces and straighten them out.
  5. Push the lower legs together.
  6. Swing the robot legs up and over to complete the vehicle mode cabin section and rear area.

Vehicle Mode:
In Generation One Windcharger transformed into a Pontiac Firebird Trans Am. However, nowadays Hasbro and Takara Tomy are more careful about licensing, so Windcharger now transforms into a figure that is an approximation of a Pontiac Firebird instead. He has the same basic shape, including a sleek, angled front end, a cabin section with a "T" top and a spoiler in the back.

One of the biggest differences between a Firebird and this vehicle is the front end. Instead of a front that slopes downward into a relatively thin grille section, this vehicle's front end is more flat and aggressive looking. There are vertical headlights with horizontal lines inside and an angled grille in the center. Even with this difference, Windcharger has enough of the original design to understand the original inspiration for this vehicle mode.

In a surprise move, the front wheels are actually connected via metal pins while the rear wheels are the more common clip wheels. Of course, once upon a time most wheels on Transformers figures were pinned in or on a metal rod of some sort, but this has become more rare in recent years due to cost cutting.

This mode mostly shows off red plastic with black wheels. The cabin section and the doors are made up of translucent dark grey plastic. The outlines are painted red, and while the paint color is slight brighter than the red plastic it matches up well enough to satisfy me. The grille is painted silver and the top of the hood has a red and white Autobot symbol tampographed to the left side. The sun filter on the back is painted metallic black and finally the rear has some silver on it. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I will lament the lack of deco on the rims. The wheels just look super plain, especially when you consider they have sculpted details on them that look really nice up close.

In keeping with the theme of having Prime Masters (and by extension, Titan Masters) interact with all size classes of figures, you can lift up the cabin section to reveal a seat inside. You can then seat a Prime or Titan Master inside! I really appreciate the designers keeping this functionality in mind when designing this figure.

Final Thoughts:
Windcharger is a cool figure, but he's not quite as awesome as his casemate Beachcomber but he is still a very good toy and a great homage to G1 Windcharger. If you have the other versions of Windcharger and you're happy with them, there's no great need to get this one, but if you're into the whole Prime/Titan Master play pattern and you want a more "G1" Windcharger, this figure deserves a place in your collection!

Pros:

  • Excellent sculpt in both modes.
  • Great homage to G1 Windcharger.
  • Nice deco.
  • Figure has some good bulk to it.
  • Keeping the interaction with Titan and Prime Masters was very smart.

Cons:

  • The tab sticking out of the fists are a bit odd looking.
  • Some fans have complained about the head sculpt, I don't have an issue with it personally.
  • Some fans may not like the visible gap when looking at the figure from the sides.