Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Transformers Masterpiece Ratbat KO Review

masterpiece ratbat and soundwave

Takara pulled something of a fast one by releasing a Masterpiece Ratbat, and including a rather large Soundblaster accessory with it.

The price of Ratbat sky rocketed on the secondary market, even though in this day and age it was inevitable a 3rd party company would knock off the mold at some point given their prolificness with Masterpiece figures.

Normally I do not bother with KO's as it is always at the back of my mind that they are not legit, but I really wanted a Ratbat to go with Soundwave and his other tape minions.

This will only be a short review, mainly focusing on the issues affecting the knock off, where those pesky pirates just could not get it quite right.

Does this knock off do a good job?

Hit the button below to find out

*edit* I am not sure why the text formatting seems to have gone a bit mad?

Tape Mode
masterpiece ratbat in tape mode
In tape mode,Ratbat looks much like all of the other tape minions – but in Purple. The familiar cassette pattern is done in silver on one side of the tape, to create the Illusion that it is a fully functioning cassette tape.
As this is a KO, some of the paint apps are quite sloppy, most noticeably the gold paint on the bottom left.
masterpiece ratbat ko

Flipping the tape over, the silver pattern vanishes and you see exposed robot details. It actually makes a cat face? Or have I drank too much Mountain Dew?
Ratbat fits into Soundwaves chest, but it is extremely tight. Without an original Takara release to compare it to, the magical oracle known as “Google” tells me that the KO fits in more tightly than the original. Not sure what causes the problem, as it all fits together snugly.
The tape mode is a really good representation of Ratbat. Everything is folded up, and not visible at all from one side.  Turning the figure round, and you see bits of robot detailing but that is the same for all of Soundwaves  Cassette minions.
Other than the paint splodge, there is nothing that stands out to scream it is a knock off. In fact, the details are virtually perfect, and unless you already knew it was a KO - there is almost nothing that identifies it as such.

There are a lot of rumours going around that this batch of Ratbats are not actually knock offs, but in fact are factory plucked from the reject bin.

I would be happier if that were the case, because it would mean they were official and it would get rid of that slight nagging feeling I get when I look at it.
Paracetamol might do the trick too.
Bat Mode
transformers masterpiece ratbat ko

Ratbats transformation is from the mind of a genius, just like all of the Masterpiece cassettes. Of the 5 previous Masterpiece tape figures, Laserbeak was the most brilliant for the way all of his parts folded in to still make a perfect, clean tape mode and Ratbat follows that approach more than any of the others.
Ratbat is the same, so his gold thrusters fold out of the tape rather than being separate add on pieces
Some of the pieces are very tight to fold out, in particular the wings, but then so were the other tapes so I am not sure it is something I can attribute to it being a KO.

knock off masterpiece ratbat

Ratbat looks fantastic in Bat mode. The sculpt is a great likeness for the animation model, rather than the original toy which I always thought looked a bit weird.
The sole exception is the tape detailing on the wings. If they could have flipped them round, it would have been perfect, but they don’t spoil the look.
So it looks great, but there are some problems. From the front you can see splashes of paint above one of his feet, which is something I can remove- but you can see why this is either a factory reject or a KO
masterpiece ratbat side

Another flaw involves the chest not folding completely flush with the body. You will not notice it when looking from the front, but it is quite obvious when looking at it from the side.
From a quick look, I don’t know what is causing it, but I would guess it is something that can be fixed.
It is beginning to feel a bit like a 3rd party toy here.
mp13b ratbat

Finally, the most widespread issue with these is one of the thrusters does not fold flush. According to a thread on TFW2005, it can be fixed by dismantling it and filing away some plastic. I have done this on a few toys, but I always struggle when it comes to removing pins.

For £12 delivered from the other side of the world this was well worth it. I don't really want to shell out a Soundblaster, and being as that is the only way to get Ratbat - I would have been sad to miss out.

Whilst this is a KO, and there are problems, I am glad to have experienced the mold and for it's price it is an absolute steal when compared to paying for the official version.
There is almost no difference to the real thing, and all of the flaws can be fixed.

Just be wary if you see cheap Ratbats on EBay that you know what you are buying beforehand.

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