Transformers Prime Beast Hunters Nova Bumblebee Toy Review

in 2013, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Beast Hunters, Deluxe, Predacons Rising, Prime, Target Exclusive

center>Transformers Prime Beast Hunters

Nova Blast Bumblebee General Information:
Release Date: October 2013
Price Point: $15.99
Retailer: Target Exclusive
Accessories: Eagleshot Bow missile launcher, Missiles x 6, Dual barreled blasters x 2

Images:

In late 2013, the "Transformers Prime" series came to a conclusion via a full length animated movie called "Predacons Rising". This movie both aired on The Hub Network and was released on DVD. In support of this release was a sub-line of Target exclusive "Predacons Rising" action figures, most of which consisted of repainted figures from the "Beast Hunters" toy line. One of these figures was "Nova Blast Bumblebee", a redeco of the Deluxe "Beast Hunters" Bumblebee figure. This figure has also been repainted as Night Shadow Bumblebee in mass release, but I haven't gotten to review that figure just yet. This review will focus on the changes made to the figure for this release.

Robot Mode:
This release of Bumblebee is a straight up redeco with no significant sculpt changes. His primary color is still yellow but it is a much brighter shade than the first "Beast Hunters" Bumblebee. Don't worry, it's not neon or anything, but when you put the two side by side there is a noticable difference. The two other primary colors on this figure are gunmetal grey and dark metallic blue - both of which make a striking contrast to the yellow plastic. These two colors are used on smaller parts such as his thighs, which are silver on the inside with overlapping metallic blue armor. I really like this color combination and was especially pleased that a metallic blue was used and not just a flat blue. Even better, the metallic blue is used for his missiles and missile mounts, making them even more prominent in this form.

In a refreshing move, the deco pattern on this figure is different than the previous version. There are some commonalities to be sure. The "feather" inspired details on his shoulders and the sides of his legs are painted, most of the details on the grille are painted and his knee armor is painted. However, there are sections on the figure that have been painted that were left mostly blank on the previous version - most notably the middle section of the chest, which now sports a blue grey paint over the metallic blue plastic. Silver is also used heavily. You'll find it on the robot face, the mid-section of the torso and the knee armor. Bits of blue are used the paint the pupils in the eyes. On the one hand it looks a bit creepy (the term I believe is "beady eyed") but on the other it's a tiny and impressive paint application to see on the figure. Yellow is used on the mid-section, giving the piece color continuity from the top to the bottom of the figure. Interestingly, the "feather" details on the shoulders are painted a different color than the ones on the feet. The ones on the shoulders are gunmetal grey whereas the ones on the feet are blue grey. The most striking of the decos on this figure are flame like patterns on the top of the chest painted in blue grey. Perhaps that's what a "Nova Blast" looks like? Overall, I'm very fond of this deco and I think they did a great job with it.

The "Eagleshot Bow" weapon included with the figure was also a surprise. The bow's central body is cast in yellow plastic (matching Bumblebee's) and the "prod" or "limb" sections (the wing like pieces that swing out to the sides) are cast in metallic blue. The surprise was that the upper half of the weapon has been painted gunmetal grey, which gives it an amazing look. The yellow alone would've been okay, but not great. Adding the gunmetal makes it more distinctive and visually interesting. Bumblebee also includes the two dual barreled blasters that can be held in his hands or mounted on his forearms. These have been cast in silver plastic. While not huge, it's cool to see that these weapons were not removed and replaced with the Eagleshot bow.

Transformation to Vehicle Mode:

  1. Detach the weapons and set them aside for now.
  2. Push each of the lower legs and foot pieces up, then connect the two together.
  3. Straighten out each arm and push down the shoulder armor so the feather/blades point out to the sides.
  4. Swing the back panel up.
  5. Push the shoulders in, which will "auto transform" the head by swinging it forward and collapsing the chest pieces down.
  6. Swing the back panel up and then forward.
  7. Swing the forearms up.
  8. Push each door in and rotate the missile racks so they point forward.
  9. Swing the leg section back to form the rear of the vehicle.
  10. Attach the Eagleshot Bow to the top of the vehicle and the dual barreled weapons to the hole in the engine.

Vehicle Mode:
The colors in the vehicle mode bring most of the focus onto the yellow plastic since most of the robot mode parts are hidden now. It also shows off the gunmetal grey wheels, which work very nicely with the "blades" in the front that are painted gunmetal. It also brings focus to the blue "flame" details in front. We also get to see a new deco on the engine, which is now blue. Surprisingly, all the windows (front, side and back) are painted. They are blue, but not the same blue used elsewhere on the figure but a lighter shade that leans towards grey. I am surprised because most of the time nowadays the back window is left unpainted (presumably to save money) so it's great to see it painted here. The finisher is a large, black Autobot symbol right on the top of the cabin section. Taken as a whole, this is a really strong deco in my book (though your mileage will vary depending on your tastes).

Functionally, the weapon still fits nice and snug on the top of the vehicle and the smaller weapons connect to the front without a problem.

Final Thoughts:
As redecos go, this is a really strong example of how to do a straight up redeco right. Vary up the paint scheme, provide some dynamic colors and paint parts usually not painted on mass release figures. Of course, how much you like this retooling of Bumblebee to begin with will affect how you feel about this figure, but to me it's a fantastic redeco.