So, Hasbro has a “‘Twas the Night Before” party the night before New York Comic Con, and this year featured some fairly big reveals.
Here’sÂ Optimus Prime as he’s going to look in the next movie,Â Transformers: Age of Extinction. I’ll confess I don’t really see much difference from the previous movie versions except the blue-to-red ratio seems to have been inverted.
Hasbro is also adding Dungeons and Dragons sets to their Kre-O line. How do people like Kre-O, anyway? Is it going over well? Is it derided by Lego fans? I’ll admit the added poseability seems like an improvement over Lego. I admire Lego’s commitment to their long-successful figure design, but it seems to me Kreons may offer a bit more play value.
More importantly, I love seeing Hasbro make use of the D&D brand for more than just games (tabletop, video, and otherwise). It’s really cool we’re getting Kreons ofÂ Drizzt Do’Urden and Wulfgar, but c’mon, Hasbro – where’s Warduke?
I guess what I’m really saying is, I will buy the hell out of any and all Kre-O Ravenloft products.
There were several new reveals for the 3Â¾” Star Wars Black line. I keep hoping Hasbro will change the name of either theÂ 3Â¾” or the 6″ line, but so far no dice on that one. Anyway, the figures look pretty good.
Hasbro also showed a preview of the packaging for the toy line based on the new upcoming animated seriesÂ Star Wars: Rebels, which I’m actually pretty excited about because the premise sounds great:
STAR WARS REBELS continues the epic tradition of the legendary Star Wars saga with all-new exciting, action-packed adventures. It is a dark time in the galaxy, as the evil Galactic Empire tightens its grip of power from world to world. As the series begins, Imperial forces have occupied a remote planet, ruling with an iron fist and ruining the lives of its people. But there are a select few who are brave enough to stand up against the endless Stormtroopers and TIE fighters of the Empire: the clever and motley crew of the starship Ghost. Together, this ragtag group will face threatening new villains, have thrilling adventures, and become heroes.
I never got on boardÂ Clone Wars because of my powerful anti-prequel sentiments,* but I’m excited about this one. It’s like they took Firefly, set it in the (original trilogy) Star Wars universe and made it into a Saturday morning cartoon. As Calvin’s mom said of hamburger casserole, there’s not a thing in there I don’t like.
According to a report by Rebelscum.com, the figures will feature “the same highly detailed sculpts we’ve seen in the Saga Legends collection.” I’m interpreting that to mean theyÂ won’t be in an animated style, which, if true, is good.Â The only bad news is the figures are going to have only five points of articulation in the style of Hasbro’s recent Saga Legends figures. That’s a bummer, and I’m sure it’s being done primarily to keep the figures in a kid-friendly price range.
If the show is enough of a hit with older fans, it’s always possible we could get more highly-articulated versions of the characters in SWB3Â¾”.
Finally, there was the big reveal of the fourth figure in SWB6″‘s third wave. And it’s:
Anakin fromÂ Revenge of the Sith. Yeaaaah, should have seen that coming, what with Kenobi being in the wave and the way each wave has at least one matched hero/villain split (if we match Luke with the Sandtrooper, which I admit is a bit thin).
I can’t say I’m a fan of this figure, for a few reasons. First, it’s from the prequels. Second, it has fabric parts. Third, the head sculpt could definitely use some more work. And finally, it’s from the prequels.
But I’ll probably get it anyway, because I’ve already become a completist on this line, for better or for worse. It’s also pretty much the only line I’ll be collecting for a while, aside from the random Predator or Universal Monster.
Here’s hoping wave four finally brings us Darth Vader. I have this nagging worry he’s going to become the DCUC Martian Manhunter/MOTUC Ram Man of this line.
* That said, I acknowledge it totally sucks thatÂ Clone Wars fans are evidently not getting their promised sixth season.
Kre-o probably has it's fans, but AFOLs tend to be a bit hardcore like He-man fans. Within the culture there are those who are really cheesed off at bricks and components produced outside Denmark and refuse to buy sets which contain such components.
From a personal point of view, whenever I get my hands on Mega bloks Kre-o or the like, they never quite get it right in the way Lego does. They feel cheap, and the clip on bits and extra articulation really don't help them either. If you like the franchise involved you may be tempted with the figures, but possibly they try too hard to keep as many details accurate rather than interpret the spirit of the subject to embrace the limitations of a minifigure or brick based design.
That said, at the end of the 1990's Lego were messing it up pretty badly themselves and almost went under. Big horrible bricks and uninspired designs were really dragging them down. Plus the colours… oh the horror!
The last few years have seen many expensive but exceptionally well designed sets that are both fun and inspired (if you can afford them). They still happily mess up regularly with some dreadful themes and components, but in terms of overall quality and design they have nailed it, and it's that simplicity of design of things like the minifigure that Kre-o and the like will really struggle to better.
Luke/Sandtrooper isn't the matched set in wave 1 of Black. It's R2-Sandtrooper. After all, the Sandtrooper was looking for R2, and R2 is a good guy character. Bam.
They should make the D&D characters from the cartoon.
Oh, Michael Bay. He said that they totally re-designed the Transformers for the new movie, and they'll look totally different. It's just like when he said he wasn't going to direct the second film, then said he wasn't going to direct the third film, and when he said he made his trilogy and it was time for someone else to take over, and said he hated the Dinobots so he'd never use them.
Being a Transformers fan who hates these films is a little bit like being Theon Greyjoy, and Michael Bay is our own personal Ramsay Snow.
I keep waiting for Michael Bay to go away and the movie series to get a better reboot. Looks I'll be waiting for awhile.
I'll give Bay this much: The man knows how to do jobs he clearly hates to get what he wants. He's also working on the NEXT movie already. Meaning the closest we'll be to a POSSIBLY passable TF movie is 2018.
One of us could start film school next semester, finish it, do some independent movies or bitch work on studio films, maybe get lucky and score a hit so one could start making the necessary connections to possibly BE the next director on that Transformers reboot. That is how much godamn time we're looking at. The guy that does the reboot could be coming out of high school this year.
Man, am I glad Star Wars is dead to me!