Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Combiner Wars Streetwise and Blades Review

combiner wars Streetwise and Blades

The final pair of deluxe figures from Wave 3 of Combiner Wars are Streetwise and Blades. One is an almost complete remold, whilst the other is straight repaint with a shiny new head plonked on top like an angry faced Angel upon the top of a Christmas tree.

To see the reviews of Combiner Wars Streetwise and Blades, hit the button below.


Alt Mode

combiner wars streetwise

Streetwise is based off the Dead End mold, which was also used for Brake-Neck (Wildrider). Hasbro have been very economical with the molds used in Combiner Wars so far, with each wave containing multiple remolds and repaints - thankfully Streetwise is a very extension version of the former.

Yes it is based off the Dead End mold, but Hasbro have rejigged it to be completely different. Replacing the rounded curves of Dead Ends Ferrari inspired alt mode, is a much more angular body that points more to a Lamborghini - but more rally-esque.

Just, it is a fast looking car right?

Every part of the cars body is different to Dead End, it is wonderful and as much as I loved the miserable Stunticon savant, this is my favourite car alt mode from the line so far.

combiner wars streetwise side

As Streetwise is a Police car, he comes with a light bar molded onto the roof and a law enforcement deco. An off White is used for the plastic which matches Streetwise G1 incarnation, however his paint work is totally new and unlike anything on the G1 toy.
That only had a star on the side, whereas this has gone for something far more modern with it's use of flashy Blue. The Bonnet looks particularly nice with the Blue covering the vents and Autobot logo cleanly positioned in the middle.

There is a also a Silver set of lamps, and bull bars (I think that is what you would call them?) molded to the front to add some extra detail.

Oddly, the little Black square of paint that is supposed to imply a rear windshield on the back reminds me of the old heat rub symbols from a distance.

combiner wars streetwise window

The plastic used for Streetwise does not have the same smooth feel as Dead End or Brake-Neck, it feels a lot rougher to the touch. Is that Hasbro cheapening out? Could be, but I really hope not.

I wish Hasbro had used this mold for Wildrider, its shape fits him a lot more and it would have maintained variation between all of the Stunticon limbs. But at least we have a fantastic Streetwise, and whatever he is inevitably redecoed into.

Well played Hasbro.


Robot Mode

combiner wars streetwise head

There transformation is exactly the same as Dead Ends, so if you would like to read more about it, please check out my Dead End review here.

It is still just as fun, and despite every part being new, it still works in exactly the same way.

combiner wars streetwise transformers

Streetwise has a brand new head and almost totally new body. The only parts that remain from Dead End are the thighs and waist I believe. Everything else has been re-sculpted whilst sticking to the basic framework.

I like this approach, because it homages the original Scramble City concept, and keeps the bots all looking different and unique but also consistent and part of the same themed line.

combiner wars streetwise vs brawl

Posing Combiner Wars Streetwise is just as much fun as any of the CW figures, and he seems particularly pliable to pulling off Stone Cold Stunners.

I had to take his legs off and add some clear nail polish to tighten them up, as they were really loose. In fairness, it did not affect too much, but it was for that one single time I had him as an arm on Defensor, and the loose hips meant his arm liked to slowly fall to his side.

combiner wars streetwise gun

Accessories included in the package are a Combiner piece (same as Dead Ends) and an awesome triple barrelled shotgun.
Oh Streetwise you bad ass.

This ultimate weapon of death is painted a Silvery Grey, though on mine someone at the factory must have needed a loo break, because they forgot to paint all of the tip of the barrel!
His hands do hold weapons tightly, which if you have read my Dead End review, you will know he couldn't grip a paint brush.

What is scary about the gun, in fictional "if it was pointed at me" terms - is that it has a scope. Think about it, Streetwise is taking dudes out from distance. If he wants to.

Streetwise has two fantastic modes, and really benefits from having so many new parts. The mold is a great one to start with, and all of the changes improve it in my opinion.

I can totally see it as Wheeljack too.


Alt mode

combiner wars blades

Blades is a repaint of Alpha Bravo, just in so much Red. Unlike Streetwise, he has had no remolding to his vehicle mode and everything is the same as it was with Alpha Bravo (cheeky plug, you can read my review of that figure here for more thoughts on that mold).

Back in the 80's Blades was a very rounded chopper, that looked the one from the start of the A-Team, only in White and Red instead of Military Green.

It is a cool design, and is far more red than the original. In fact, the colours have been flipped, where the original was mostly White with bits of Red - that has been reversed on 2015 Blades.

There is a lovely little badge on his tail fin too, which makes him feel all important no doubt.

transformers protectobot blades combiner wars

If you already have Alpha Bravo, you know what to expect. Blades helicopter mode is cool, without being great and that is about all you can say for it.

It is inevitably going to be repainted into Vortex, so we get to experience it for a 3rd time.

Please switch it up a bit Hasbro, pretty please.

Robot Mode

protectobot blades combiner wars deluxe

Transformation is precisely the same as Alpha Bravo (you can read more on that here), so I won't go into it, instead I will focus on what is different.


deluxe combiner wars blades gun

Alright, that is not fair he does have a brand new head which is something, and really it makes quite a lot of difference.
This head sculpt is one of the most cartoon lookylikey I have ever seen. The closer you look at it, the more it looks like are staring at the TV show, and he is getting angry at you for staring at him.

Knock it off he says.

Most of the Combiner Wars figures so far have had wonderful head sculpts and Blades is at the top of the pile.

I quite liked Alpha Bravo, and despite being the same mold besides the head, in robot mode Blades does manage to hold his own character. Perhaps it is all the Red used, because all of the pieces are the same, but the paint work does a masterful job of taking the same mold and making it look different.

The Silver paint changes the dimensions of the torso significantly, because on Alpha Bravo it was all Orange, but the Silver used on Blades pecks (heeeeeh) helps to reshape it, then further down the lower half of is torso has Silver paint to look like his waist, which makes it look higher than Alpha Bravo who's waist is Orange, then below that the actual waist that turns is Black.

So what am I am blabbering about? Well alright, it makes Blades look stockier, because the paint placement works to move details around.

That make sense? Probably not.

combiner wars blades gun 2

Blades has also stolen poor old Alpha Bravos (love you buddy!) gun. It fits him well, as the most characterisation Blades got was in the G2 comic where he was a gun toting psychopath.
Paired off with his missile hands, and he is less Rescue Ops, more Demolitions.

Combiner Wars Blades is an awesome looking figure. Not much has changed from Alpha Bravo, but the use of colour elevates it to another level, whilst strongly evoking the original character we all had broken toys of circa 1986.
This figure didn't grab me in alt mode, but when Rubik's cubed into a robot it has become a real favourite figure.

Except for when the wind blew him over in the garden and scraped some Silver paint off of his chest, then my nerd OCD screamed like it had been blown up like a planet facing the Death Star.

Suppose I will just have to buy another, if Hasbro UK shift their bums into gear so we can buy them in shops.

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