Hi, it’s Power Pal PrfktTear here, your local Transformers guru. I’m here to give you the rundown on all the goodies announced by Hasbro at this year’s BotCon, held in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Be sure to check out the bottom of the article for the photo gallery!)
One of the big announcements at BotCon ’08 was the 25th Anniversary line. Most likely taking a page from the G.I. Joe 25th Anniversary Collection, this line will feature an Optimus Prime 25th Anniversary pack, complete with Prime himself, plus his trailer, a silver Roller, a re-release of the original comic, a DVD including the restored three-part animated series pilot “More than Meets the Eye,” and an Autobot shield with sounds and phrases. All this for an MSRP of $69.99
For those of you who were underwhelmed with the announcement of the first wave of Transformers Universe ( *cough* Classics 2.0 *cough*), we’ve been rewarded with the announcement of new deluxe figures, including Autobots Sideswipe, Silverstreak, and Ironhide. Most importantly, Ironhide is RED (as he should be), and his alt mode is an SUV-type vehicle. In the deluxe class we’re also getting Aerialbot leader Silverbolt. Unfortunately it does not appear as if Silverbolt will be a gestalt, but he looks cool nonetheless.
Robot Heroes is getting more love with more versus packs, including Thrust vs. Blaster, Insecticon Kickback vs. Ironhide, and Beast Wars Megatron II vs. Silverbolt. Also scheduled for release are Beast Machines Cheetor vs. Tankor, and Robots in Disguise Optimus Prime vs. Megatron.
According to Hasbro: Robot Heroes will be “getting more love” (as seen with the announcement of Beast Machines and RID characters, truly giving it a “Universal” selection). Hasbro will continue to support the Classics line alongside with TF: Animated, up to the Transformers movie sequel. It will be put on the back burner when the film comes out, but they will return to it afterwards.
In Masterpiece news, reporters for TFormers.com talked to Takara representatives about future Masterpiece releases. The reps said that Masterpiece Grimlock and Thundercracker are in the works, and it’s a matter of when, not if they are released. Unfortunately there are no preview images at this time.
Fans of Transformers: Animated will be thrilled to know about upcoming releases. The toy line will officially launch in June, though Hasbro has already listed them at their online store. Due in September are Deluxe Sentinel Prime, Swoop and Elite Guard Bumblebee. Also planed in the Leader Class is Ultra Magnus, also due in Sept.
If you thought the momentum from the film was dying down, you were wrong! Hasbro has announced several new figures under the Transformers film banner. Three new movie dexluxe figures will be available exclusively at Wal-Mart, including Decepticon Fracture (a re-paint of Classics Mirage, and a homage to the female Gobot, Crasher!), and repaints Breakaway and Crankcase).
Wal-Mart won’t be the only store getting exclusives. Target will be selling 2 exclusive action figure comic packs, and each of the two sets is themed around a comic book battle and includes a Deluxe figure, a Voyager figure, and the comic that inspired the pack. First up is from the War Within #2 comic, and features Springer vs. Ratbat, and second is from the Target 2006 #3 comic and features Roadbuster vs. Dirge
Finally, fans of the Transformers Titanium line can rejoice as Hasbro announced War Within Grimlock and War Within Prowl as Toys ‘R’ Us exclusives.
Overall, it looks like Hasbro is doing a great job continuing the momentum built up from the film and adding to it with the popularity of the Animated series. There’s plenty of stuff coming out, and it looks like there’s something for everyone.