Galaxy Force Toy Reviews: Starscream

in 2004, Action Figure Review, Cybertron, Decepticon, Galaxy Force

Transformers Galaxy Force

General Information:
Release Year: December 2004
Retailer: Japanese exclusive
Price: $45 (Depending on Import Retailer, purchased at Image Anime)
Accessories: Force Chip, Missile x 1, Missile Launcher


Tech Specs:*
"Breaking out of the mold of a loyal subordinate to Master Megatron, Starscream is an aloof warrior who has his sights on being leader of the
Destrons. In addition to firing his special null beam cannons, he uses his Force Chip for the power of evil, unlocking blades from both arms. His
attacks with these weapons inflict fatal wounds, inspiring terror among the Cybertrons."

Strength: 9  Intelligence:Speed:Endurance: 8
Rank: 8  Courage: 8  Firepower: 9  Skill: 10

*Tech Specs translated by Doug Dlin.

When the Decepticon jets were first seen in the original Transformers series, they were tetrahedron shaped
aerial vehicles before their arrival on Earth (and change into F-15 jets). When the time came for artist Don Figueroa to create "new" forms to represent the Transformers long before their arrival on Earth, he drew from the original series as part of his inspiration. Using the original tetrahedron design, but adding to it, he created one of the most dynamic versions of the Decepticon jets ever put to print.

Using Don's design as a springboard, the designers basically decided to find a way to turn the "tetrahedron Decepticon" into a real, functioning toy. The result is a vehicle mode that years ago, fans probably thought they would never see, and the character chosen to take this form is Starscream.

Vehicle Mode:
Starscream's vehicle mode is a slightly sleeker take on the tetra-jet of G1. The central point is nowhere near as high as the original G1 versions or even Don's version in War Within. However, it is a definite central piece which, with the pointed front end and sleek wings on the side work together to form the shape of a G1/War Within crossbreed.

While the comic book version of Starscream is extremely smooth and curved, this version has much more straight lined detailing and angles. It's impressive just how layered things are on this toy. If you take a look at the center point on the top, rear of the vehicle, it has several angles and raised details. The wings are sharp and angular looking at the ends, but have everything from cannon details in the middle to thrusters on the back. Mounted on either side of the cockpit are guns which look like they should be able to move up and down, but they're solid pieces, a slight disappointment.

The fine details were not skimped on with Starscream. Take a look at a side view of the jet and you'll find a tube detail running from one part of the arm to another. Flip the vehicle over and the detail-fest continues. On the center part of the underside are a pile of tech details, mostly tubes running from the back to the middle. Take a peek inside the cockpit and you'll find a seat molded in there as well! Excellent sculpting job.

Starscream's primary colors are grey, black and red. A bit of gold shows from the missile tubes from the robot mode and his translucent parts are done in purple, including the cockpit cover.

Starscream's primary weapon in this mode (aside from the sculpted guns) is his missile launcher, mounted on the underside of the vehicle. Push the trigger and the missile fires. You attach the Force Chip to the slot at the back of the vehicle. This activates a blade on each wing that swings forward. Both blades are translucent purple and have really nice, intricate designs.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Detach the Force Chip and missile launcher.
  2. Angle the sides/wings out to the sides slightly.
  3. Pull each side of the middle section out to the sides and then swing them forward.
  4. Rotate the lower legs around so the red vents face up.
  5. Swing out the heel pieces from the bottom of the feet, and swing in the front points. Flip the feet up.
  6. Swing the back of the vehicle down.
  7. Swing the lower arms forward and straighten out the arms.
  8. Split the central point of the jet mode in half and swing the halves down.
  9. Place the missile launcher in his hand.

Robot Mode:
Starscream has appeared again and again in recent years. Each time he has been given a new form that still resembled his original G1 form in some way. However, those designs were aimed at making him look sleek more than anything else. In this case, Starscream's design makes him look both sleek and downright regal.

Starscream definitely has a good bit of bulk in this form. His upper arms are almost all armor, consisting of the sides from the vehicle mode. With the sharply angled wings at the end, and huge shoulder armor (with the two rectangular details, carried over from Don's original design), he looks like he has some serious protection from damage. The central body is made up of the jet nosecone, and on either side of his head are the rectangular protrusions which have been an integral part of Starscream's character design for years. Inside those parts are gold missile-type pieces, another carry over from Don's original War Within design.

His upper legs are rather thin, but then when you get to his lower legs they thicken up a lot. He has quite a bit of sculpted detail on his legs, including vents, pistons and other shapes. The high detail can also be found behind the robot head, where a ton of tech detail indicates some complicated machinery at work with this robot in disguise.

In this form, Starscream has has fifteen points of articulation. What's great is that a lot of double joints are used instead of just using regular ball joints. This adds a lot of stability to the toy, allowing you to put him in some cool poses.

Starscream uses a bit more black in this form, found on his robot head, lower arms and upper legs. The rest of the colors all carry over from the vehicle mode. Silver and gold are used a bit on the head and the parts to the sides of the head, but none of the colors overwhelm each other, they all work together very well.

Attaching the Force Chip activates the blades, now part of Starscream's arms. Since Armada, Starscream has been portrayed as a bit of a swordsbot. This time around he gets two blades, each mounted on his arms, a really nice touch. Each one is full of detail which gives them the appearance of having layers and being able to collapse into themselves. Really cool.

Final Thoughts:
Starscream is one fantastic Transformer. He has a fantastic source design, which the toy designers worked hard to be faithful to, while adding great touches of their own. He looks sleek, tough and like a true authority figure in his own right. The rumor mill is currently saying that the US "Cybertron" version of Starscream will be much bigger (potentially ultra or larger sized) so if you want a smaller version, this may be your best bet. Highly recommended.