Sunday, May 27, 2012

Transformers G1: Rage (Stormtrooper)

Around the same time as I got back into collecting Transformers again at the tale end of G2, my exposure to the internet was expanding. It didn't take long before a e-pen pal of mine told me all about the "G1.5" figures as I call them. When G1 died a slow and painful death in the U.S., Hasbro Europe continued to release new figures that were exclusive to the European market. When G2 was released in the U.S. some of these new toys were included in the series, but many never made it across the pond.

Most collector's should be familiar w/ the color changing cars from G2. 4 were released, 2 Autobot and 2 Decepticon. Each had a self contained weapon that had a air billow allowing it to squirt water. The front of each car was made of a different type of plastic that would change colors when exposed to water. Not my favorite gimmick by any stretch and the 4 figures released were just OK. For whatever reason a few of these color changers stayed in Europe (called Stormtroopers). When I found out about these I knew that one day I'd have to have them. It took many years before I was able to track them all down - but well worth the work.

Rage is by far my favorite of the Decepticon Stormtroopers. This is the 2nd Rage I've owned, opting to upgrade my loose figure for this nice MOC specimen.

These have to be some of the largest blister cards I've seen used for Transformers! Talk about a waste of packaging.

I know a lot of these exclusive European TFs came in different packaging depending on where in Europe it was released. Some toys even had different names in different regions. Rage is also known as Aquanaught. I'm not sure though if all of them had multi-lingual packaging.

Rage was released in 1993, but thankfully Hasbro didn't go too crazy w/ the neon colors. Perhaps that is one of the reasons I was always drawn to him over some of the other Stormtroopers. His colors don't look completely out of place...well with the exception of the green headlights and windows!

Stupid factory applied Decepticon decal isn't centered. I would've tried moving it, but I was afraid it wouldn't stick if I tried and I don't think these guys have ever had their stickers reproduced.

Say what you will about their water guns, at least the designers found a way to integrate them in their vehicle modes. One less thing to have to keep up with! Rage's weapon actually runs underneath the length of the car and the top is integrated in the front bumper.

I love the simplistic transformations of older TFs. While articulation is nice the lack of it doesn't necessarily take anything away for me personally. Rage's transformation is very easy. Pull out the car doors/arms, flip down the car hood and mull pack on the rear of the car/legs. Flip down the toes and position the arms.  See, told you that was easy.

The only downside to the Stormtrooper figures are their weapons and how they are wielded in robot mode. According to the instructions the air billow is supposed to tab into the roof of the car on the back. Problem with this is the plastic tubing gets bent doing so. I wanted to show this problem to everyone, but right after I took the picture I took the gun out of his hands. For display purposes I just laid his gun at this feet. It's a shame there isn't a better way for him to hold his gun...or is there. If you are reading his and have any ideas please let me know.

While the gun is a small set back I still really enjoy this toy. I was even happier to pick up the carded version for about what current "voyager" TFs retail for. I've got more "G1.5" toys to show in the coming months. In fact my this part of my collection has grown so much I'm faced with moving them and giving them their own space...but first I have to find that space in my already crowded collection!

1 comment:

  1. I remember these. I never knew they were Europe-exclusives.