"Generations" War for Cybertron Powerdasher Zetar Toy Review
Release Date: October 2019
Price Point: $19.99 (depending on retailer)
Retailer: Fan Channel (BigBadToyStore, Entertainment Earth, Hasbro Pulse etc.)
Accessories: Cannon/Blaster Parts x 2; Drill Bit
Official images and text below in italics are from Hasbro Pulse:
This special edition Generations Selects WFC-GS08 Powerdasher Zetar figure features a design inspired by classic 1983 Powerdasher Diaclone, Drill Dasher, with tampo art reminiscent of the original stickers.
With this Powerdasher Zetar figure, fans can add to their Powerdasher collection. Powerdasher Zetar joins Powerdasher Aragon figure (sold separately in Siege Fan Vote pack, subject to availability) as the second Siege Powerdasher figure.
Includes Generations Selects Deluxe Class Powerdasher Zetar figure, and instructions.
- Generations Selects is a fan-dedicated line of figures featuring special edition characters that can’t be found in the main line.
- Design inspired by classic 1983 Powerdasher Diaclone, Drill Dasher, with tampo art reminiscent of the original stickers
- Powerdasher Zetar joins Powerdasher Aragon (sold separately, subject to availability) as second Siege Powerdasher figure.
- Weaponizer figure breaks apart into 9 weapon accessories that can equip other Siege figures (sold separately. Subject to availability).
- Convert from robot to drill mode in 23 steps
- Ages 8 and up
Powerdasher (or if you prefer, Powerdashers) were a trio of action figures released in Generation One as mail away items. These were originally based on three toys released as part of the Diaclone toy line in Japan. The original versions included pilot figures and had differing decos (depending on which figure you look at). When they were released as part of G1 they were released without their pilots. For the most part these little guys are fondly remembered by fans, but their relatively obscure status as mail away items made them unlikely candidates to receive the Generations treatment.
Fast forward to 2019 and surprise! As part of its War for Cybertron series, Hasbro wound up releasing updates of all three Powerdashers in new forms. Each of these was a redeco and retool of a pre-existing Weaponizer sculpt. In Powerdasher Zetar's case, he is a redeco and retool of Siege Brunt. This review will focus on the changes made to the figure for this release.
Powerdasher Zetar comes in the standard cardboard Selects box. The outside has a large Autobot symbol in the front with a smaller "Transformers: War for Cybertron" logo on top. A sticker on the side wraps down to the bottom to seal the box. The sticker has the Takara Tomy and Generations: Selects logo on it. Slice the edge of the sticker and unfold the box to find Zetar on a plastic tray with his instructions underneath. The interior of the box has a hex pattern on it with Zetar's "rank symbol". In a fun bit of packaging design, you can technically unfold the box completely and fold it back together inside-out so the hex pattern faces outward and it looks pretty snazzy!
Zetar does not so much have accessories as he is a bunch of accessories. That said, he does have a cohesive robot mode with a cannon weapon. The cannon is partly based on the end of G1 Brunt's cannon, but it works for Zetar too. The end is painted a black, matching up with one of Zetar's own colors. The peg and ports that hold these pieces together are 5mm, allowing them to be used with other figures in the line.
In G1, Powerdasher Zetar had a very distinct robot mode. His limbs were mostly just blocky arms and legs, but he had a large drill on his head with a very retro looking face (provided by a sticker). There was no confusing Zetar with anyone else in the G1 line (or really, almost any Transformers figure since).
For this version of the character, the designers sought to replicate his most distinctive feature with this figure: the head. Brunt's head has been removed, and instead a tube shaped head has taken its place. Unlike his G1 predecessor, this head has sculpted details (as opposed to being a sticker) but it does utilize the G1 sticker design as its foundation. Since this figure still needs to be able to actually transform, the drill piece on the head is actually removable! This essentially gives Zetar an accessory that Brunt did not have and it makes him look distinctive (to say the least). I absolutely love how the designers fully embraced this retro head design. It looks great!
The rest of Zetar is all the same as Brunt's body, including his thick arms, chest and legs that appear to be heavily armored. He even has the same weapon as Brunt. I love how this bulky form looks with the retro (and kind of cheesy) looking drill head. Zetar totally looks like a mash up of the "old" and "new" and it's fantastic.
Unlike Brunt who was mostly purple in color, Zetar uses his G1 figure for color inspiration. The body is a mixture of yellow and black plastic, with black focused on the chest, shoulders and thighs and yellow making up the rest. Silver paint is used liberally on parts like the head, arms, torso and legs to call back to G1 Zetar's vacuum metallized parts. Yellow and metallic blue are also used for smaller details. A tampographed Autobot symbol in red and white is found on the chest. For collectors who do not like the "battle damage" detail on Siege figures, rest assured there are none of those on this figure. Overall this deco looks great.
All twenty four points of articulation are nice and tight on this figure. This is especially notable since the figure is made to come apart.
Transformation to Vehicle Mode:
- Detach the cannon weapon and separate the two pieces that form the weapon.
- Swing each arm up out to the sides.
- Push each claw thumb in.
- Rotate the arms so the sides of the tank treads face forward.
- Push the forearms in against the shoulders.
- Push the lower legs together.
- Detach the turret base on the back.
- Swing the lower legs back a bit.
- Attach the turret base to the thighs.
- Rotate the waist around 180 degrees.
- Push the head down.
- Swing the chest section up.
- Detach the arms.
- Rotate the shoulder pieces so the "lights" are in alignment with the top of the treads.
- Reattach the arm pieces.
- Rotate the figure around and push down the peg in the middle of the chest section.
- Detach the lower legs.
- Swing each of the pegs at the knee area against the thighs.
- Attach the right leg to the turret base.
- Swing out the peg on the bottom of the left leg and connect it to the right leg.
- Attach the black colored weapon barrel to the end of the main cannon.
- Attach the silver piece from the cannon to the 5mm port on the right side of the cannon.
- Swing out the peg in the chest and attach the drill to it.
It would have been very easy for the designers to just "reuse" Brunt's vehicle form for Zetar, but they went one step further. In addition to Brunt's vehicle mode, the designers also found a way to integrate the drill into this form! I love the way the drill winds up front and center (literally), calling back to G1 Zetar.
This mode shows off a nice combination of black and yellow plastic with plenty of silver paint details. Having the Autobot symbol sticking out in front really helps to distinguish this figure from its predecessor.
Powerdasher Zetar "transforms" into his weapon modes basically by breaking apart into his individual bits. Once you do this, they break down into the following pieces:
- C-HP M2 OBV Launcher: This is formed by combining the two lower leg pieces into a cannon. The port in the front of the cannon can accommodate a Blast Effect to look like it is firing. There are additional 5mm ports on the sides and top, along with a 5mm peg on top.
- C-AD M2 VX Cannon: Connect the chest/head section to the cannon barrel/end to form this large weapon. Unlike Brunt, Zetar uses the drill as the end of this weapon (labeled here as the C-CR M2 AGZ Blaster). It can be attached to other figures using the peg on the robot chest.
- C-CMA M2 Amplifier(s): This refers to the claw arms from the robot mode, which can form tread platforms to attach to the ports on the underside of various figures from Siege.
- C-HD M2: This is formed from the base of the tank turret. In this case it forms a shield.
- C-MD M2 HMC: Referred to as "Hydraulic Mauler Pincers", these are formed from the lower legs and arms combined. These make up the main weapons of the "Serpentine Loadout".
- C-MFM M2 PBM: This is formed from the waist and thigh pieces, allowing you to attach other weapons to it and connecting them to a another figure.
In addition to each individual weapon having a name and potential function, the designers offer up two suggested configurations for these parts in the instructions:
- Demolition Loadout: Using Hot Shot as its example, attach the forearms/claws to the bottom of the feet. Combine the blaster weapon with the chest/head section and attach it to the right arm. The Turret Armor attaches to the left arm and the lower legs come together to form an "L" shape and attach to the back to create an over-the-shoulder cannon.
- Serpentine Loadout: This involves attaching the lower legs and forearms/claws to the PBM piece and then attaching that to the back. The blaster weapon and Turret Armor are then attached to the arms.
I am glad Hasbro included these "suggested" configurations. They offer a nice start to utilizing the weapons aspect of this figure.
I already loved the Brunt figure, but Powerdasher Zetar takes things to a whole new level. The character he represents, the new drill piece and even the retro/cheesy face sculpt all show a love for the source material that I really appreciate. On top of all that Zetar is just a fun toy! Highly recommended.
- Fun, obscure G1 callback.
- Great play value.
- Embodies the "spirit" of the original Powerdasher Zetar.
- Some connection points do not have a lot of clearance spece, so you are limited in what you can connect (especially on the base of the turret).