“Metroplex is my kind of town!” (Blaster, 1986)
Transformers Review: Generations FoC Metroplex
OUT NOWA TF review written exclusively for Inside Pulse by Rikkomba
“Where are my eyes?”
Fall of Cybertron is a fun videogame, but its real value comes from giving us the tallest Autobot ever, the mighty Metroplex. This goes beyond fiction, as the design team made sure to make our favourite citybot slightly taller than the previous record holder, Fortress Maximus. Unfortunately this is 2013, so Metroplex weighs around one third of good ol’ Fortress. Don’t let this distract you, though: Metroplex is lots of fun, even when on a diet!
Disclaimer: any rumor about FoC Metroplex actually representing G1 Metroplex could or couln’t be true, and, quite frankly, I couldn’t care less 🙂
While its G1 version was cursed by dozens of detachable parts, FoC Metroplex comes with a handful of accessories: two black guns, which can be attached on the shoulders, a Legends class toy, a black car called Scamper, and a giant red bazooka/spaceship/handgun. The Asian releases of Metroplex include a second red gun, but also cost twice, if you are lucky. I am very happy with the American release.
The amount of sculpted detail is very satisfying; however, the budget for paint applications must have been forgotten, as we are asked to manually applied around ninety (90) stickers, making Metroplex the first IKEA Transformer. One notable change from the G1 version is the lack of chromed parts: I couldn’t care less, but if you really need some chrome feel free to pay 150$ more for the Japanese release, I am not stopping you.
Articulation is pretty good, allowing a wide range of poses. Who am I kidding: Metroplex’ knees are terrible and can hardly stand most poses. The following picture is the most extreme pose I could come up without having to support Metroplex.
However, Metroplex doesn’t really need to strike a pose to impress anybody: being the size of a small kid, our Titan only needs to stand tall and look menacing.
Electronic sounds are activated by pressing on the command centre just under Metroplex’ chin. Sounds include quotes from the videogame, but they get old fast. One more interesting gimmick is the possibility of displaying the Titan with or without “sunglasses”: you can make them come back by touching the helmet. The mechanism seems a little fragile, but it seems to work without any problem. There’s also a lever behind the neck which allows to move Metroplex’ eyes side by side: you can’t take them out and give them to Unicron, unfortunately.
Overall, Metroplex’ robot mode is a success, and you should add it to your collection for this mode alone. Hold on to your chair, though.
“Trypticon, you’ve had your last warning from me”
Metroplex’ vehicle mode is a ground carrier of sorts. While the transformation is simpler than a minicon’s, the result is simply awesome: I don’t know how long this alternate mode is, but it’s just huge. While ideal for Legends size toys, Metroplex is so huge that deluxe toys can be placed on it without looking out of scale (maybe). There are not many gimmicks here. The black ramp leads to… nowhere, and most weapons don’t fire missiles, except the red bazooka. There’s some mechanical arm hinting at a repair bay of sorts, but it looks quite out of place to me. However, the sheer size and the aircraft carrier elements get the cake.
“Hey keep it down, this is a residential area”
G1 Metroplex was the first ever ‘citybot’ and has always been the most representative one. In the Fall of Cybertron videogame Metroplex’ transformation and city mode reminded much more of Fortress Maximus: for the toy, designers gave TFans exactly what they wanted, a faithful update of the G1 design. We got screwed. All of the original’s defects are still present, and the increase in sculped details and size makes problems stand out much more, with some novel headaches attached.
First, there’s that awful right arm meddling around. It’s meant to be a firing station for Scamper, but it’s just out of place. Moreover, this escalates scaling issues between Legends figures. Metroplex’ legs become… hollow boxes? Parking spaces? The legion of stickers you are asked to apply do little to improve the situation; a hollow and boring situation. These issues make me wonder how a design from the seventies could be made worse if not intentionally. For example, the black ramp leads from the robot’s chest to… nowhere, as it’s actually too short to touch the ground, and leaving it on one of the legs makes little to improve its awkardness. The best parts are probably around the head, which becomes a turret for Scamper, with the helipad area being quite well done, including a couple of attachments that let you accessorize an otherwise empty area. The red bazooka become a skycraper of sorts, and it’s a clever solution to the desperate need of accessories G1 Metroplex had.
However, the hanging arm, the stupid ramp and the general lack of innovations
Any any case, a city bot is a city bot, and you have to try quite hard not to have fun with it. I don’t own, or plan to own, any Legends class figures, but even deluxe toys make Metroplex look good. Did I mentioned that Metroplex was HUGE? Yeah.
On a side note, the deluxe figure Air Raid/Fireflight, the red remold of Shockwave, has an extra peg that allows it to be used as a weapon by larger transformers, for example… Metroplex. Air Raid nicely complements the city mode, giving some dignity to that awful hanging arm.
“Metroplex heeds the call of the last Prime!”
Despite its problems, Fall of Cybertron Metroplex is a very fun figure, with a gigantic and impressive robot mode, a fun vehicle mode and an OK city mode. If you are buying this for your children, Metroplex’ strength comes from the smaller toys it interacts with. If you are buying for your collection or for nostalgic purposes, make no mistake: Metroplex is the best citybot ever, and will look great on any shelf. The lack of a second red bazooka does not hurt this release, as there’s really nothing to do with the second one (plus that tiny 150$ discount, if you had forgotten). Highly recommended.
Until next time,
Tags: fall of cybertron, Transformers