"Generations War for Cybertron" Sparkless Drone Toy Review

06/02/21

General Information
Release Date: March 2021
Price Point: $19-22.99 (Depending on Retailer)
Retailer: Wal-Mart Exclusive with a Limited Release via Hasbro Pulse
Accessories: Blasters x 2, Light bar

Official images and text in italics are from Hasbro Pulse
Build the ultimate battlefield inspired by scenes from the Transformers War for Cybertron series. This pack includes a Deluxe Class 5.5-inch scale Sparkless Bot figure inspired by the character as seen in the War for Cybertron series. With 41 deco ops and battle-worn details this is the most series-accurate version of the character. Features Sparkless deco, including rust and weathering to achieve that zombie bot look.

This Sparkless Bot toy converts to its vehicle mode in 15 steps and includes 2 series-inspired accessories. Fans can collect other figures inspired by the Transformers War for Cybertron series. Fans can collect other figures inspired by Transformers characters from the series to pose out scenes inspired by the series. Build out a horde of zombie bots with other Sparkless figures! (Each sold separately, subject to availability.) Fun for kids and adults 8 and up!

Includes: figure, 2 accessories, and instructions.

  • This Sparkless Bot figure is inspired by the character as seen in the War for Cybertron series
  • Features Sparkless deco, including rust and weathering. With 41 deco ops, this series-inspired figure brings fans the most detailed and series-accurate version of the character from the War for Cybertron series
  • Sparkless Bot toy features classic Transformers conversion from robot to vehicle mode in 15 steps, and comes with 2 accessories
  • Fans can collect other figures inspired by Transformers characters from the series to pose out scenes inspired by the series.
  • Build out a horde of zombie bots with other Sparkless figures! (Each sold separately, subject to availability.) Fun for kids and adults 8 and up!
  • When fans see the iconic red and white packaging they know they're getting a figure inspired by the War for Cybertron series (each sold separately, subject to availability)
  • Figure scale: 5.5 inches
  • Ages 8 and up
  • Warning: Choking Hazard - Small parts. Not for children under 3 years.

In early 2021, Wal-Mart released another wave of their exclusive "Netflix" figures based on characters appearing in the War for Cybertron animated series. This was sort of a stealth release, with the toys hitting shelves before Hasbro made any kind of official announcement. By the time they made the announcement, the toys had sold out. A little while later Hasbro Pulse surprised fans by offering up these figures in limited quantities (while still ensuring fans understood these were Wal-Mart exclusives).

In the War for Cybertron cartoon, there is a sequence where the Autobots have to make their way through the Sea for Rust and along the way they discover that the dead Transformers there still have some "life" in them as they come under attack! These creepy "undead" were the inspiration for this Sparkless Drone figure. This figure is a redeco of the Siege Barricade figure which itself used the same base sculpt as Siege Prowl and Bluestreak. It was also used as Smokescreen who I will definitely get around to reviewing...some day! Definitely check out those previous reviews to get a sense of this sculpt. This review will focus on the changes made to the figure for this release.

Robot Mode:
This figure is a straight up redeco of Barricade with no changes to the sculpt. But what a redeco it is! Its base plastic colors are very basic, with grey, gunmetal and translucent black plastic making up most of the figure. Its strength however is in the deco patterns that cover the torso, feet and the "wing doors" on the back. On each of these parts there is an amazingly beautiful "rust" pattern. These are not just a few brushes of copper color or something. Instead, it looks like these patterns of brown, copper and grey (almost greenish) "damage" were printed onto the figure instead of hand painted. I have two copies of this figure and the patterns match exactly on both, and if you look close enough you can see they look more printed than hand painted, and I love that. This is unlike what you would see on most Transformers figures and I think it is brilliant.

I was very impressed to find the joints on my copy of this figure are tighter than those on my copy of Siege Barricade. Usually tooling starts loosening up over time and it is not often it goes the other way. This figure includes the light bar and two blasters that came with Barricade but not the rifle that came with other iterations of this base sculpt. I guess that makes sense since the "Sparkless" were portrayed more as zombies who fought with their bare hands.

Transformation to Vehicle Mode:

  1. Detach the accessories and set them aside for now.
  2. Straighten out the arms and legs.
  3. Push the heels on each foot up.
  4. Push the lower legs together.
  5. Point the feet down.
  6. Swing the chest and arms section up.
  7. Swing the middle panel of the hood piece up.
  8. Swing the mid-body panel under the hood.
  9. Rotate the lower body around.
  10. Swing the lower legs up over the thighs.
  11. Swing the section with the robot head and legs up under the hood.
  12. Swing the arms out to the sides.
  13. Swing the arms in, then swing them down under the car.
  14. Attach the light bar to the top of the vehicle. You can also attach the small blasters to the hood.

Vehicle Mode:
If you like the "rust" pattern on this figure's robot mode then you'll love the vehicle mode (I know I do). Thanks to the way the parts on this figure all consolidate in this form, almost the entire vehicle mode is made up of the "rust" pattern. This gives the figure a very unique and complex appearance with the translucent black sections in the cabin section and the wheels breaking up the colors. It's funny to say, but this rusty, broken down looking vehicle actually looks beautiful and rich in a very specific way and I love it.

The light bar and weapons still connect to the vehicle nice and snug. The attachment point on the top of the cabin section and light bar are both also nice and tight. I am happy to see the quality control on this figure was given some attention.

Final Thoughts:
The Sparkless Drone is a very specific kind of figure both in theme and appearance. It is not your typical Transformers figure and I think that's what I really like about it. Recommended!

Pros:

  • Amazing deco.
  • A unique type of Transformers "character".
  • Potential troop builder.

Cons:

  • This base sculpt is now on its fourth use, so some fans may not want to invest in it again.
  • The initial difficulty in obtaining the figure may turn some fans off, though as of May 2021 it has been readily available on Hasbro Pulse for several weeks.