Energon Toy Reviews: Sledge

in 2004, Action Figure Review, Constructicon, Decepticon, Energon, Superlink

Energon

General Information:
Release Year: October 2004
Retailer: General Release (Toys 'R' Us, Kay Bee, Wal-Mart etc.)
Price: $6.99 (Depending on Retailer)
Transformation Difficulty Level: 2
Accessories: Energon Weapon, Energon Star

Images:

Early in the Transformers toy line, a cool concept arose: several Transformers combining into one combined form. The first of these Combiners were the Constructicons, six Transformers who transformed into construction vehicles and who could join together to form the powerful robot Devastator.

Energon has, in large part, served as a toy line that pays homage to many classic Transformer designs, characters and concepts. The latest concept to return are Combiners, but not just any combiners. These have themes borrowed from the G1 era. In this case, the Constructicon concept returns in the form of the Constructicon Maximus team. Sledge is one of the members of this team.

Vehicle Mode:
Sledge's vehicle mode is a bulldozer. He's a basic sized toy, so it is fairly impressive how bulky they made him look while still squeezing him into a basic price point. Quite simply every part is sculpted to be big in appearance. The shovel is deep while his four tires are huge, making up roughly half the height of the vehicle itself. The driver's section is high up and the back portions look like they're made up of some heavy machinery. Sledge's shovel can be moved up and down and it's fairly deep.

Just because the parts are rather large, it doesn't mean that there is no detail. I was actually surprised to see how much detail was put into the shovel for instance. It has several smaller blades inside of it and raised details on top. There are also ladders sculpted into the sides leading to the driver's section. On the back section there are parts that
look like hydraulics. Nice detailing.

Sledge's color scheme is largely based on dark shades of green and black. This is a bit reminiscent of the G1 Constructicon colors since some of the green used here are dark shades of "bright safety" green. Silver is used for some detailing such as blades on the shovel and the hydraulics in the back.

Two accessories are included with Sledge. One is a blue Energon Star which you can attach to the Spark Crystal on the shovel arms. The other is a claw that can attach to the rear of the vehicle. Sledge has two holes on the back portion that can accomodate Energon weapons.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Detach the Energon claw if attached.
  2. Move the rear tires out to the sides a tiny bit and then swing the rear section back.
  3. Swing the front tires out to the sides.
  4. Flip the vehicle over and you can see the robot arms on the sides, flip them up.
  5. Swing the front portion of the vehicle onto the middle section and snap it into place with the clip on the mid-body.
  6. Rotate the upper body around.
  7. Swing the lower robot arms down.
  8. Turn the head around so it faces forward.
  9. Move the claw on the weapon down, and swing the handle out and place it in Sledge's hand.

Robot Mode:
The bulky, powerful look of the vehicle mode carries over to the robot mode. The upper body is rather wide, mainly because of the chest. Things slim down a bit at the waist and hips, but the lower legs get wide again, giving him a strong, stable appearance. It helps that the front tires are swing out on the back and the rear tires are on the lower legs as support.

There are some nice details in this form. On the shoulders are circles with lines down the center which can be anything from missiles to screws. On the center of the chest is a sculpted Decepticon symbol. One interesting detail can be found in the middle where there is a grill that looks like it would normally be part of a vehicle mode. The head design is cool too,
straying away from the typical "crest in the center of the head" design and instead having one rectangular, vertical piece on either side of the top of the head, but with one being larger than the other. Such asymmetry can make things interesting and it works here.

Sledge's weapon is interesting as it is just a melee weapon and not able to convert to a gun or anything like that. Still, it is a rather intimidating weapon, with its double claws. Nice and different. Still, it would have been cool to add one more peg so it could have been held as a gun.

While the robot mode is mostly green, black makes up a significant portion including the head, parts of the chest, lower arms and feet. Silver is used to detail parts such as the fists, chest and legs. Orange is used on the circle designs on the upper chest and the head.

Sledge has ten points of articulation. These are all useful ones including the head, waist, arms and legs.

Final Thoughts:
Sledge is a cool toy. He looks great in both modes, has good articulation and a well thought out sculpt. When all this is packed into an affordable, basic sized Transformer it's always a treat. Recommended.