KRE-O Beast Hunters Mech Venom Battle Toy Review
Release Date: February 2013
Price Point: $3.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
- In Box*
- Official Photo (Vehicle Mode)*
- Official Photo (Versus)*
- Scan of box (Front)
- Scan of box (Back)
- Instructions (Front Cover)
- Instructions (Windcharger)
- Instructions (Windcharger - Robot)
- Instructions (Missile launcher)
- Instructions (Cohrada)
- Instructions (Parts list)
- Instructions (Back Cover)
- Cohrada vs Windcharger
Text below in italics and images above with asterisks(*) are from the Official Transformers Web Site:
It’s a Beast Hunters showdown with the Mech Venom Strike set! The 49 pieces in this awesome 2-in-1 set let you build a Transformers figure as a terrifying beast or a vehicle. Whichever one you build, send your Windcharger Kreon figure into battle with him! Build your TRANSFORMERS adventures, then tear them down to build new ones! Works with major construction brands.
Includes 49 pieces and instructions. Ages 6 to 12 years. Product does not convert. Hasbro and all related terms are trademarks of Hasbro.
KREO continues in 2013 after it's introduction. While many sets went on repeated BOGO sales and clearance, ultimately the line was successful enough to justify another run. This time out, there seems to be less emphasis being placed on gigantic playsets and more on smaller fare that focuses on the KREONs themselves. Smart move in my opinion. With an emphasis on the current "Beast Hunters" toy line, the KREONs themselves still have a distinct "G1" flavor, giving the sets continuity from the previous year's toys. While other KREON reviews I've done list the parts, the instructions included with this set have a listing already, so check out this scan for the listing.
One of the small sets released in early 2013 is the "Mech Venom Strike" set, featuring a G1 Windcharger inspired KREON versus a nasty looking mechanical snake borrowing the name "Cohrada" from the Japanese "Beast Wars Neo" snake Transformer of the same name (though he was a good guy). The name "Cohrada" doesn't appear on the packaging or instructions, but it was listed on the Powerpoint slide shown at New York Comic-Con 2012 during Hasbro's presentation.
Cohrada kind of stretches the definition of a Transformer, mostly because he doesn't transform and nor is there any hint he ever could based on this design. He's quite simply a mechanical snake with no hint of an alt form. The head is made up of several parts that form a pretty convincing and sleek snake head. The head is designed so that his lower jaw can move up and down. This head is connected to nine ball joint pieces. Each of these is identical and it's exactly what it sounds like, nine ball joints just connected together so you can pose him in all sorts of ways. The main body then ends in a big claw at the end (with articulation). In total, this gives Cohrada fourteen points of articulation, which is probably a record for a KREO figure of this size. Granted, it's mostly a cheat, but it's still valid.
Cohrada is cast mostly in dark blue parts with some grey bits here and there such as his lower jaw. The claw/end piece is cast in black. There are no paint applications on the figure, but he does make use of stickers for detailing on the top of the head and the sides. The one on top features arrow like designs with the Predacon "Predaking head" symbol in the middle. On the sides are large reptilian eyes reminscent of the "Beast Wars eye" and some mechanical details set in a line pattern. Given how this guy is built, there's no shock that he doesn't have more deco and I dig the use of stickers for detailing on the head.
Cohrada is best thought of as an accessory to go with Windcharger and his missile launcher platform. By himself he's not super impressive, but in a little set like this he definitely works.
- Vehicle Mode
- Vehicle Mode (Side)
- Vehicle Mode (Back)
- Vehicle Mode (Front View)
- Robot Mode
- Robot Mode (Side)
- Robot Mode (Back)
- Robot Mode (With blaster)
- Robot Mode (On stand)
Though not named on the packaging, Hasbro's description of this set above clearly identifies this Autobot as Windcharger. One of the original Autobots from the Generation One series, Windcharger has seen a bit of a comeback in recent years including his "Reveal the Shield" incarnation. This version of the character uses the Generation One iteration of the character as the basis for its design.
One note before I dive into the aesthetics of the figure and so on. Right out of the package, my Windcharger came with stress marks on its wrists. This is an issue that many of the KREON figures with rounded hands encountered early in the line. When asked about this, I was told by Hasbro that they have since adjusted the tools and that future KREONs should not have this issue. Mind you, the functionality of the figure has not been affected and while stressed, the plastic has not broken. This is something however that you'll want to be careful about if you grab this set.
Windcharger uses all the standard KREON arms/legs/head parts. For this mode, he adds on a couple to reflect his vehicle mode. This includes wheels attached to the legs and the cabin section of the vehicle on his back. He uses the "standard blocky helmet" that's also found on Springer and Crankstart. The choice of helmet works out as Windcharger has traditionally had a rather angled head shape (depending on which model you look at and who was drawing him). I like the use of the car cabin section on his back, which is something he had in his G1 incarnation.
Windcharger is mostly cast in red plastic, with smaller parts such as his hands and wheels cast in black. His head, waist and back panel are light grey, reflecting the colors used on G1 Windcharger. Like the Microchangers, a lot of detail is provided by a tampograph print on his torso which is designed to resemble the torso design of G1 Windcharger including a big Autobot symbol in the middle. Unlike other KREONs however, he also features tampographs on his legs with a vent line design that reflects the way the rear of the vehicle looked in G1. Even his feet are colored black, giving more detail to the figure. His eyes are blue and his mouth is set in a bit of a frown. Clearly Windcharger is serious about tackling Cohrada!
Functionally there are no issues with the figure. Even with the aforementioned stress marks, the hands move just fine. He is armed with a blaster that fits nice and snug into either hand.
Windcharger uses more parts than your typical KREON to make up the vehicle mode, however it's all in the interests of making him resemble his G1 counterpart as much as possible. The front of the vehicle has a wide V shaped grille/headlights section similar to the G1 character. He has a clearly defined cabin section complete with a windshield and the window vents on the back. He even has a rather low profile, resembling the Trans Am vehicle that G1 Windcharger transformed into.
In terms of deco, Windcharger makes liberal use of stickers on the windshield and hood piece. This gives him more detail connecting him to G1 Windcharger and it looks great. I'm especially fond of the way his windshield sticker actually has windshield wipers printed onto it. Awesome!
- Missile Launcher
- Missile Launcher (Left)
- Missile Launcher (Right)
- Missile Launcher (Back)
- Missile Launcher (Angle View)
- Missile Launcher (With Windcharger)
The missile launcher station is the key piece that turns this "versus set" into an actual "playset". Set on a flat platform, this launcher makes really neat use of the KREO parts. The missile is held in by a C clip and when you push down on a button on top, the pressure is what winds up launching the missile. It's a great little gimmick that is fun in a toy this small.
The parts used to create this figure really help show off the creativity of the team. The missile itself looks like a cannon barrel is part of its construction, but it has the curved end at the front you'd expect. The base has a handle on the back for Windcharger to "man" the launcher and on the right side a piece that looks like three cylinders together look like "extra ammo" mounted on the side. It's a fantastic looking missile launcher platform that's appropritately cute and fits right in with any KREON trying to use it.
The base of the missile launcher is a square, beige piece that looks like it's meant to resemble soil or sand in color. The launcher itself has a dark grey foundation and contains a mixture of dark grey, light grey, red and black parts. The "extra ammo" piece on the side is a dark gold color. Altogether the colors work well and I like the way the red and black match up with Windcharger's primary colors. Like Cohrada and Windcharger, the missile launcher makes use of stickers for detailing. These are found on the sides of the launcher's dark grey section and feature circular details that look like they could be part of a mechanical contraption that helps load or launch missiles.
At the back of the launcher are two horizontal grips set at angles that a KREON can hold onto. It works well and Windcharger looks quite fierce manning the launcher!
Overall this is a really fun little set. Cohrada is an interesting choice of homage (even if he doesn't transform) and I love the Windcharger KREON. Clearly some extra love/attention was given to Windcharger's form and deco here, something I really appreciate. The missile launcher is a great addition and I was truly surprised that it's a "working" launcher. Overall this is a great little set. My only reservation are the plastic stress marks on Windcharger which knocks this down from a "Highly Recommended" to "Recommended with caution".