"Robots in Disguise" (2015) Blizzard Strike Optimus Prime Toy Review
Release Date: January 2016
Price Point: $14.99 (Varies by retailer)
Retailer: Toys R Us Exclusive
*Images and text below from Amazon.com:
Decepticons beware, because this Warriors Class Optimus Prime figure converts in a heartbeat from robot mode to semi truck mode, and he’s got a mighty battle axe that will make his foes think twice about taking him on! He converts in 9 steps to either mode, and kids can keep converting him back and forth to keep the adventure going. When the battle is over for the day, scan the figure’s badge into the Transformers Robots in Disguise app (device not included) to unlock the characters for awesome virtual combat. Transformers adventures will be off the hook with this Blizzard Strike Optimus Prime figure! Transformers and all related characters are trademarks of Hasbro.
At the end of "Robots in Disguise" season one Autobot leader Optimus Prime returned fully from what seemed to be his death at the end of "Transformers Prime" to join Team Bumblebee. In season two is role is more prominent, so it's not a shock that the beginning of 2016 saw the release of another Warrior Class Optimus Prime. This is the same sculpt used for last year's Warrior Class figure which was later given a new deco as part of the "Clash of the Transformers" Toys R Us exclusive line. Check out those two reviews for more details on the figure. This review will focus on the changes made to the figure for this release.
Blizzard Strike Optimus Prime is in a bubble on a card. Interestingly the artwork on the card features Optimus in his familiar red and blue colors instead of the "Blizzard Strike" blue and silver colors. The insert does say "Blizzard Strike Optimus Prime", focusing on the character's new colors in name at least. The back of the card has photos of the figure in both modes and the instructions. Under that is information for the official "Robots in Disguise" mobile app and legal information in several languages.
As season two of "Robots in Disguise" begins, Optimus Prime and several Autobots head to the Arctic regions of Earth to track down a Decepticon. To use stealth when approaching the Decepticon they scan the camouflage pattern of a local vehicle. Optimus winds up looking rather light blue with new trim details, and it is that version of Optimus that this figure is based on.
This figure has not altered the sculpt at all, so those looking for a new head or weapon will be disappointed. He also comes with the same axe weapon as previous versions of the figure.
This version of Optimus Prime is cast in the following plastic: two shades of metallic blue (one dark, one medium), light grey and a translucent smoke color. The two blue shades make up most of the figure. The light grey is seen on smaller parts like the upper arms and thighs. The translucent plastic is a nice surprise and you'll find it on his wheels and axe weapon. In many ways, these colors remind me of the "Nightwatch Optimus Prime" from the live action movie lines. The blue colors are actually stronger than the ones used on the animation model, but given how almost white those colors are I can totally understand why the designers went this way. This has to pop off the shelves visually and this does that.
Paint colors on this figure include a metallic black, metallic blue, light grey and silver. The metallic black is used most prominently on the chest for the faux windshield. The metallic blue is used for circuitry like stripes on his legs and forearms, both of which are based on designs from the animation model. The light grey is used on the middle of the body, providing continuity from the light grey thighs up to the chest section. Silver is used on the face and his eyes are blue. The metallic blue is also used for the axe blade, contrasting nicely against the translucent grey color it is cast in. Overall this is a nice looking piece and the use of metallics and translucent plastic together was very smart.
All the joints on my copy of this figure are nice and tight except one: the right side thigh where the leg can swivel in and out. That joint is noticeably loose compared to the left side and the other versions of this sculpt. It's not terrible, just noticeable.
Transformation to Vehicle Mode:
- Detach the weapon and set it aside for now.
- Push the robot head into the chest.
- Push the legs together.
- Swing the arms up.
- Swing each forearm out to the sides then swing them up against the shoulder armor.
- Swing the two arms together to form the front of the vehicle.
- Rotate the lower body around.
- Pull out the panels on the sides of the legs and swing them forward to form the sides of the vehicle.
- The axe has a notch on either side that can slide into the tabs in the gap towards the front of the trailer section.
In vehicle mode the dark metallic blue plastic really dominates thanks to it makeing up everything from the cab section back. The cab itself is the lighter shade of blue and the translucent plastic really shows here with the wheels. It's actually interesting to see how little the sides of the vehicle are painted. The side panels have no deco on them at all and the wheels are unpainted (no shock there). Still because of the colors used it totally works as a representation of Optimus trying to stay "low key".
Most of the paint and deco is focused on the cab section. The smokestacks, grille and front bumper are white and the headlights are red. The windshield is metallic black. The finishing touch is a scannable Autobot symbol on the wind vane that interacts with the official "Robots in Disguise" mobile app. It looks great and I think part of the reason I like it so much (aside from the use of metallics and translucent plastic) is that it is very strikingly different from the two previous versions of the figure.
If you already own the other versions of this figure, then I'm going to say right off the bat that you can skip this. That said if you are a completist or if you want the sculpt in a dramatically different color scheme then this is the figure for you. I really like the use of metallic and translucent plastic and the deco looks great against the plastic colors. Recommended to a very specific audience.