Cybertron Toy Reviews: Evac

in 2005, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Cybertron, Earth Planet, Galaxy Force

General Information:
Release Year: November 2005
Retailer: General Release (Target, Wal-Mart, Kay Bee etc.)
Price: $19.99 (Depending on retailer)
Transformation Difficulty Level: 3
Accessories: Cyber Planet Key, Helicopter blades, Missiles x 2

Evac package art

Images:

Tech Specs:
Evac loves flying on Earth almost as much as he loved soaring over the epic skylines of Cybertron. he's been in hiding on Earth since guardianship of the Planet Key was passed on to him millions of years ago. he feels keen affection for the people of Earth, whose history he has observed from its very beginnings. it frustrates him that the Transformers must keep their presence on Earth a secret, because he recognizes the potential value of the humans as allies. Courageous, determined and gentle, Evac avoids fighting when he can, but if forced into cmbat, he can be a very tough opponent. He is dedicated to the protection of other life in all its forms.

Strength: 7 Intelligence: 8 Speed: 8 Endurance: 7.5 Rank: 9 Courage: 9 Fireblast: 6 Skill: 8

Transformers.com entry:
EVAC loves flying on Earth almost as much as he loved soaring over the epic skylines of CYBERTRON. He’s been in hiding on Earth since guardianship of the Planet Keys was passed on to him millions of years ago. He feels a keen affection for the people of Earth, whose history he has observed from its very beginnings. It frustrates him that the TRANSFORMERS must keep their presence on Earth a secret, because he recognizes the potential value of the humans as allies. Courageous, determined and gentle, EVAC avoids fighting when he can, but if forced into combat, he can be a very tough opponent. He is dedicated to the protection of other life in all its forms.

Evac was one of the Autobots assigned to protect Earth a long time ago. Currently disguised as a rescue helicopter, this commander is a Voyager class Transformer in Cybertron.

The Planet Keys included with the Cybertron figures have codes printed on them that you use to unlock content at transformers.com. Evac's code is v49u and reveals a picture of his concept art and the following text: Evac is commander of the hidden Earth Cyber Planet key and he and his partner Cosswise have been hiding here on Earth for hundreds of years! Evac has changed his vehicle mode at least a dozen times over the years so he wouldn't be found. He has taken the form of a bi-plane, a small army jet, a super-fast stealth jet, a propeller plane, a blimp and at lest 14 different types of helicopters! Talk about being a robot in disguise!

Planet Key:
Evac is one of the Planet commanders in Cybertron, so his Planet Key differs slightly than the other Earth Planet Keys in deco. The sculpt is the same, featuring tech detail around a "sun" icon in the center. The key is also still cast in dark blue translucent plastic. However, instead of silver, metallic gold is used for the tech details on the edges, and the "sun" in the center is colored with vacuum metallized gold instead of silver.

Vehicle Mode:
Evac is a helicopter in vehicle mode. But rather than the typical type which lands on skids, this has no skids, giving a much more sleek appearance. Instead, this type of copter lands on wheels, something akin to the Augusta Westland A109 Power helicopter (other reviews have also suggested this is based off a Dauphin helicopter, which is highly likely). The nose is rather flat (instead of being bulbous) and it sweeps up and back onto the cockpit area. The engine where the helicopter blades connect have multi-level details including large vents and tech detail leading to the port in the back where you attach his Planet Key.

Inside the cockpit are two chairs with control panels in front of them. Due to the transformation scheme the two chairs are walled off from each other, which looks kind of funny. Still, it is nice to see interior detail is still something the designers pay attention to.

To each side of the Planet Key port are two cannons. When swept back they look like rocket boosters. Insert the Planet Key and the two cannons flip forward. Pressing the red buttons on them will launch Evac's missiles. Push the larger red button towards the front of the engine and the rotor blade spin to simulate flying.

The tail of the vehicle is one piece, with a rotor on either side of the end. Originally Evac had been conceptualized as having two tails, one rotor each, but this was conslidated partly to make it look a bit more like a real life helicopter. All along the front and sides of the helicopter are smll details mostly lines etched into the plastic. Most of the time such helicopters are rather sleek looking like this, so he dos not need a ton of tubes and wires etc. in the detailing to look good.

On the right side of the vehicle is a hook with a winch. Point the hook and pull it down and then press the red button to have it snap back up. I thought this was a neat touch for a rescue helicopter. Despite not having skids, Evac does (of course) have landing gear. The gear takes the form of two wheels towards the front, on the underside of the cockpit and one wheel on each side of the vehicle towards the rear.

Evac's color scheme surprised me a bit but also shows some nice creativity on the part of the designers. Yellow is his most striking color. A rather dark shade, the yellow in no way looks bad. In fact, for a rescue vehicle which needs to be clearly seen, it makes perfect sense. The other primary plastic color is dark blue, which helps balance out the yellow. This is found on parts such as the landing gear and rotors. Some smaller parts are cast in a a light blue that matches the metallic light blue paint. Paint applications consist primarily of three colors: red, white and metallic flake light blue. The white is used sparingly, mostly on the tail and part of the forward section. The red is used for small details such as a stripe on the tail and small curved rectangles on the sides. The light metallic blue is perhaps the most heavily used paint color. It is used on the front portion on the border around the windows, then again on the top section where the rotors are. It is also used for stripes on the sides of the vehicle. It is a very nice color that works much better than a simple flat shade of the same color would have.

Overall, Evac has a very cool vehicle mode. It has a good amount of play value and looks great.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Detach the rotor blades.
  2. Swing the cockpit section down and snap it into place on the dark blue clips.
  3. Move the cockpit section so it points down.
  4. Split the cockpit section in half, and swing out each foot piece including the heel pieces.
  5. Rotate the lower legs around so the cockpit windows face outward.
  6. Split the tail in half and swing each half forward.
  7. Swing the missile launcher section back, then slide it up (revealing the robot head) and move it forward to snap it into place.
  8. Swing each robot arm back, snapping it into place using the clips on the shoulders.
  9. Rotate the arm segments around, then open up each dark blue panel on the lower arms to fold the fists out, then close the panels.
  10. Rotate the motor mechanism on the left arm, then attach the rotor blade to it.
  11. Rotate the lower body so the legs point forward.
  12. Extend the legs down.
  13. The wings on the back can be swung down to move out of the way.

Robot Mode:
In robot mode, Evac is a very sleek looking 'bot. While the concept of him having two tails in vehicle mode was abandoned, the aspect of having the tail pieces form wing-like protrusions in the back did not. By splitting the tail in half, it provides a very striking outline to the toy on top of its basic robot shape. However, a good dynamic outline is not all there is to this robot mode, there's quite a bit of detail to go with it.

I am quite fond of the head sculpt on Evac. It is a very basic Transformers head design, with a central crest, round circles on the sides of the head with wide protrusions on the sides pointing straight up. In the center is a robot head with a "chin strap" type section under the mouth. The way in which the mouth kind of slopes down makes Evac look rather serious, especially coupled with his rather thin, straight lined mouth (no smiles here). There are definitely shades of a "Prime" style head here, but it still manages to look different.

The upper body is where a lot of the detail is focused. Each arm has layers of detail including vent-like lines, angles and parts that almost resemble some type of strap over the shoulders. The chest piece is rather unique in design. The sides have sections of detail, some moving horizontal, others going vertical, especially near the center of the chest. Then at the center of the chest a section angles outward a bit, with a tube kind of hooked into it (it doesn't move, but it looks like a separate piece of equipment hanging there).

Other details are a bit more subtle. A grid appears towards the center of the waist, with lines leading to it, making it look almost like a belt. On the legs, there are several lines angling downward adding to his sleek appearance.

Color-wise there are no real surprises here. The same strong colors from the vehicle mode carry over here. The upper body has a concentration of the dark blue and metallic light blue colors whereas the lower body has a lot of the yellow thanks to the cockpit section making up most of the legs. Red still makes up small details such as the inner parts of the shoulders and the crest on the head.

Not counting the feet or weapons, Evac has eighteen points of articulation in this form. This includes four in each arm and the waist. Since most of these points are focused on traditional points (such as the knees, arms, waist etc.) you can put Evac in some pretty nifty poses. His wide feet offer a good measure of stability too.

The Planet Key gimmick works in this mode, although for the most part it's not perfect. If you activate his missile launchers, they point straight up. You can move the backpack a bit so they angle forward, but there is no real way to secure them in place without moving the head. The winch mechanism still works of course, and you can use the rotor as a blade weapon on his left arm.

Evac's hands have the standard weapon hole allowing him to hold Energon weapons and many of the weapons included with other Cybertron toys.

Final Thoughts:
Evac is a wonderful toy. While I love homages in any Transformers line, it is always a treat to see a truly original character and sculpt now and then. Highly recommended.