"Robots in Disguise (2015)" Warrior Class Bludgeon Toy Review
Release Date: October 2017
Price Point: $14.99 (Varies by retailer)
Retailer: General release (Toys R Us, Target etc.)
Accessories: Sword, Dual barreled blaster
In early 2017 Warrior Class Blastwave was released as part of "Robots in Disguise". The character also wound up appearing on the cartoon. However, anyone who looked at the action figure could tell its inspiration came from the Decepticon character Bludgeon. Originally introduced as a "Pretender" in Generation One, he would later appear in both the "Revenge of the Fallen" line and more recently as a club exclusive "Combiner Wars" figure. It is cool to see a character who was once somewhat obscure getting modern day updates in a mass retail toy line. Technically a "Transformers Prime" universe version of Bludgeon was already released back in the "Beast Hunters" line in limited release.
This figure is a redeco of the Warrior Class Blastwave toy, which itself was a retool and redeco of the Warrior Class Megatronus figure. Check out those reviews before this one to get a more complete picture of this sculpt. This review will focus on the changes made to the design for this release.
Bludgeon is sealed in a bubble attached to a backing card. The card maintains the aesthetic of the previous years with a white background (sharply contrasting with the black background used on the "Generations" sub-line). The Transformers logo is set vertically on the right side (if you are facing the card) and above that is the "Robots in Disguise" logo. The figure is in robot mode inside the bubble while a photo of the toy in vehicle mode is found on the insert. The insert also uses the "Combiner Force" logo, which represents the theme for the line in 2017. This time out the package art matches the character in the packaging and it looks great.
The back of the packaging features the toy in both modes along with the 13 step instructions. Below that is information about the official app and legal information in several languages.
There have been no sculpting changes made to the Blastwave sculpt for this release. Several of the sculpted parts share features with previous of the character. These details include:
- The head sculpt based on G1 Bludgeon's Pretender shell complete with a Samurai style helmet and a skull face.
- The forearms have pieces featuring tread-like details on top that also resemble the way Samurai armor has layers to it.
- The chest panel looks like two large eye sockets from a skull. This is inspired by the look of the "Revenge of the Fallen" version of the character.
- The pelvic area has a piece with a piece of armor on it that resembles traditional Samurai armor complete with layers of detail.
- The knee armor pieces and resemble both tank treads and Samurai armor.
Overall the retooling from Megatronus to Blastwave was very well done, and Bludgeon now benefits from that work.
Much to my surprise, the color swap on Bludgeon's plastic colors from Blastwave's is very simple. The blue plastic on Blastwave is now orange plastic. The other parts remain the same however such as the green on the shoulders, silver on the thighs and black on the lower legs. You could easily call this simple color swap lazy, but the fact is the green, black and silver colors work for Bludgen and more importantly, the colors look great together. Overall I would say this Bludgeon takes most of his design cues from v"Revenge of the Fallen" Bludgeon. Given that they are both tanks in their alt modes, several of the design elements such as tank treads showing in robot mode make perfect sense.
There are several paint colors on this figure including red, white, purple and silver. The red is distributed on the upper body including the head, shoulders and forearms. Purple is used on the "eye-like" sections of his chest and the robot eyes. Silver is used on the lower part of the lower legs. Overall the color scheme looks great and it borrows colors from G1 Bludgeon, making it a cool homage to that character. Like most "Robots in Disguise" figures there is a scannable symbol on his shoulder. Using the official "Robots in Disguise" app, you can scan this to unlock crystals and a ticket for the "Cryostase" Mini-Con slot machine. It does not, however, unlock the character in the game.
Overall the joints on my copy of this figure range from "okay" to "great"! In particular, the right arm popped off way too easily during transformation, but it snapped right back on without a problem. Bludgeon comes with the same weapons as Blastwave. One is a sword cast in green with the blade painted silver. The other is a dual barreled cannon also cast in green with silver paint. The sword has a 5mm peg/handle but it also has a 5mm peg sticking out the side. This can be attached to the 5mm port on the sides of the legs to make it look like he has his weapon sheathed. The cannon's peg allows you to attach it to Bludgeon in various ways including on the fists and the back of his head to become "over the shoulder" cannons (no, really).
Transformation to Vehicle Mode:
- Detach the sword and cannon and set them aside for now.
- Straighten out the arms and legs.
- Rotate the arms so the top of the forearms face outward, then swing the arms up into the shoulder armor.
- Swing the chest panel down.
- Rotate the head around.
- Push the head down.
- Rotate the arms at the shoulders so the shoulder armor faces upward.
- Swing the two arms in and connect them together.
- Swing each leg out to the sides.
- Swing the knee armor out of the way, then pull the middle and lower parts of the lower legs out, extending them into the sides to form the treads. The treads connect to a tab on the armor from the back of the robot mode.
- Attach the cannon weapon to the port at the very front of the turret section.
- Attach the sword to the port on the back of the robot head.
In terms of both deco and vehicle form this toy feels "right" as Bludgeon now. G1 Bludgeon himself transformed into a tank, so having his modern day counterpart do the same feels like a homecoming of sorts.
Because of the way the colors are distributed, Bludgeon winds up looking quite bright and full of contrast in this form. Sure there are dark colors like the black on the treads the the green on the turret. However those are balanced out by the orange in the front of the tank and the red on the turret. Some silver peeks out the side too while the tank cannon barrels are both silver. This combination of colors looks great and pays proper homage to G1 Bludgeon.
The tank turret can turn in a complete circle, making it unusual in the pantheon of modern day Transformers figures. The cannon barrels can move up and down (even with the sword attached!). Each of the treads has a 5mm port in the middle that allows you to attach extra weaponry.
This figure is what the sculpt was always meant to be. Yes, I know Blastwave is a distinct character who even appeared on the TV show, but it is clear that the sculpt was intended to be the Decepticon warrior from the beginning and I am glad to finally have the figure in person. If you dig G1 homages and the Warrior Class of figures, this guy belongs on your collection.
- Sculpt is a great homage to G1 and "Revenge of the Fallen" Bludgeon
- Deco looks like a cartoon version of the G1 character.
- Fun accessories.
- Due to its release towards the end of 2017, this figure was somewhat hard to get. Some online retailers had it, but in-store appearances were scarce (as of November 2017). You may wind up spending more than average retail for this figure.