Armada Toy Reviews: Scavenger

in 2002, Action Figure Review, Armada, Autobot

Armada

General Information:
Price Point: Maxcon
Retailer: General (K-Mart, Toys R Us, Wal-Mart etc.)
Release Date: December 2002
Transformation Difficulty Level: 3 Advanced
Accessories: Rollbar Mini-Con figure, Missile

Images

Sounds in mp3 format

Scavenger is one of those Transformers names that has been in consistant use since Generation One. Generation 2, Beast Wars, Beast Machines and Robots in Disguise all had Scavenger toys, although they were not always necesarily the same character. Scavenger gets new life again as an Armada Autobot. Long time Transformers fans will find his form familiar due to his color scheme, which is inspired by the original Generation One Constructicons (of which the original Scavener was a member).

Rollbar Review

Scavenger's Mini-Con partner is has a Transformers name that also originates from the Generation One era. Originally, Rollbar was a member of the Throttlebots, a group of Transformers who featured pull back motors. More recently, Rollbar was a member of the Ruination team in Robots in Disguise. This time around, he's a Mini-Con helping Scavenger fight the forces of evil.

Vehicle Mode:
Rollbar's vehicle mode is an off road jeep. His primary color is white. The seats and wheels are black while the back of the vehicle sports some grey. A bit of purple from the robot mode peeks through at the back, but it's not horrible. Rollbar has a nice sculpt. The vehicle is not particularly streamlined, rather it has some hard angles and more blocky shapes, making it look like a "tough" off road vehicle. The front of the jeep has four headlights, two large and two small. The seats inside the passenger section look really nice, having ridges sculpted into them. Rollbar's Powerlinx point is on the underside of the vehicle. The sculpt for this vehicle looks great, but it really would have been nice to see some additional paint apps applied such as on the headlights. A spray op on the sides to show dirt or grime would have been cool as well.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Lift the passenger section cage.
  2. Swing the rear of the vehicle back and straighten it out.
  3. Flip the passenger seats down to form the robot feet.
  4. Swing down the front halves of the vehicle to form the robot arms.

Robot Mode:
Rollbar's robot mode introduces more grey and some red into the mix. The robot face is red and the head, chest and waist are grey. The lower robot arms are black and his upper legs are purple. Rollbar has some neat detailing, but perhaps the most interesting feature from a G1 fan's point of view is the face. Between the ridge in the center of the head and the protrusion coming out on the red face piece, this Rollbar bears some (not an exact) resemblance to the original Throttlebot Rollbar. This was most likely unintentional, but is very interesting.

My biggest fear when I saw the first online pictures of Rollbar was that he would not have arms that can move up and down. Well, my fears were only half realized. Rollbar's upper arms cannot move, but his stubby lower arms can move up and down. This doesn't look all that great, but it's much better than just having an arm forever pointing downwards. The chest has some cool mechanical looking devices in it while each upper arm has a small circle with a line through it that could be anything from a screw to a missile (depending on your imagination). Including the small arms, he has six points of articulation.

Rollbar is a neat little Mini-Con. A better paint job would have made him look much better, but the core sculpt is nicely done.

Scavenger Review

Vehicle Mode:
Scavenger is a bulldozer in vehicle mode. His primary colors are purple and yellow green. This bright yellow green is the signature color of the Generation One Constructicons, and it's obvious from it's use and Scavenger's name that the Constructicons were in some way an inspiration for this toy. There is some dark red parts such as the smoke stack and the arms connected to the shovel. The sides of the treads are grey and some silver is used for detailing. A nice silver spray op can be found in the shovel on the purple parts.

Unlike the Constructicons however, he is not a bulldozer that you would recognize. Many details on it make it look a bit more "tech" than the standard bulldozer, and the rear of the vehicle has a huge drum which rolls along with the toy. The drum has "teeth" on it, no doubt for demolition. The top of the driver's area has a siren sculpted at the top and a yellow/black angled "caution" strip.

In robot mode, Rollbar can drive Scavenger. Simply pull back the passenger seat cage and put Rollbar into a sitting position and insert him into the slot. You'll see a small button there. When he connects with it, the vehicle makes a noise as if it is starting its engine. If you roll the vehicle along it makes another noise, like a large vehicle engine. As you roll the toy along, the shovel lifts and falls, a fantastic touch. Combined with the engine start up sound, the rubber treads, "moving" sound effect and the shovel moving, the toy really comes to life!

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Swing the shovel up and split it down the middle.
  2. Swing the treads out from the main body and fold the purple parts forward to form Scavenger's fingers.
  3. Both the arms are on one joined piece which slides up and forward. This also reveals the robot head.
  4. Flip the black plate on the robot chest up.
  5. Turn the upper body around 180 degrees.
  6. Move the shovel halves forward. Flip the robot feet out.
  7. On the side of each leg is a V shaped piece with a circle at the end. Attach these to the circles on the sides of the drum.

Robot Mode:
Scavenger's color scheme in robot mode doesn't offer many surprises, but looks nice all the same. The yellow green is still predominant, but more silver shows thanks to the robot head, chest and hands. A red Autobot symbol is sculpted into the chest while the robot face is silver with yellow eyes.

If there is one word to describe Scavenger's robot mode, it's imposing. Standing at approximately 7.5 inches tall, Scavenger's facial expression is
one of a warrior in battle. His big tread arms and huge hands make him look like a formidable opponent, and the sheer angles and size of the main body make him look like a solid warrior on the battlefield. The detailing on Scavenger is nicely done. His face is a nice, irregular shape and all along the body are small mechanical touches.

Roll Scavenger along and his feet will move up and down as if he is walking. As they do so, a noise sounding like stomping robot feet is heard. Turn his upper body from side to side and you will hear a metal hitting metal" noise, simulating his power in battle. Plug a Mini-Con into his Powerlinx point and push it forward to fire his missile. This also activates a noise, this time of a laser fire sound.

Scavenger has ten points of articulation. Among these I'm counting his fingers and waist. Because of his gimmick he loses leg articulation, but the gimmick is cool enough that I don't mind this at all.

The only problem I have had with Scavenger is with the "metal hitting metal" sound effect. If you swing his upper body from side to side too many times in succession, the noise does not always activate. You have to reposition him facing forward and try again. This does not happen often, so I don't mark it as a huge deal. Scavenger is a cool toy and should be part of your Armada collection.