Dave's Transformers Page: Energon
Last Updated: 4/1/05
Grimlock and Swoop review added.



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    Energon is a sort of sequel to Armada, but with Mini-Cons taking a smaller role and Omnicons and Terrorcons (each able to create energon weapons) replacing them at the Basic size. Autobots get a lot of combiners as well, to counter the swarming tactics of the Decepticons.
BASIC

    Basic-sized single figures are back, but Mini-Con teams aren't quite gone yet. No solid info on price point, but probably $7-8. Note, I don't know that these will definitely be called Basic, I'll just stick to the old Basic/Deluxe/Mega/etc sizes for now. Aside from the Mini-Cons, these include Autobot Omnicons and Decepticon Terrorcons. The Terrorcons are actually swarmers like the Beast Machines-era drones (although they may be smarter).

  • Wave One
    • REVIEW of the four figures below. Also covers packaging, comic and catalog.
    • Energon Saber Mini-Con Team - Remolded Air Defense Team with more flanges and bits added to give the sword more a more crackling appearance. Runway renamed Wreckage, Jetstorm renamed Scattor, Sonar renamed Skyboom (oddly enough).
    • Omnicon: Skyblast - Reminiscent of the G1 Jetfire (Super Valkyrie) with a lot of clear plastic bits added, including a nose-mounted cannon longer than the rest of the jet.
      • Built To Rule Skyblast - Actually a recolor and slight remold of a cancelled Ramjet Mini-Con BTR, with a gunner station added.
    • Omnicon: Strongarm - A yellow jeep with an odd combination weapon and wrecker hook.
    • Terrorcon: Battle Ravage - Black and gray panther with clear green shoulder launchers and a purple mace-tail.
      • A running change that started to show up in late February has a peg under the collarbone to lock the robot mode together and keep it from autotransforming when you move the arms.
      • Another running change (possibly linked to the first, maybe not) reworked the ankle joints.
  • Wave Two
    • REVIEW of the figures below. Divebomb is best of breed.
    • Omnicon: Signal Flare - Halftrack "radar truck" (I call it a Maser Tank). Dish components combine into energon weapon.
    • Terrorcon: Divebomb - Hawk. With energon canards. And a kickin' robot mode.
      • Running changes are numerous on this mold. The first small batch had a pointy tip on one of the sword halves, but also had less-friendly pegs on them with tabs so that they could only fit into hands or mouth in one orientation.
    • Terrorcon: Cruellock - Godzilla, 1999 cartoon version. Woot.
    • Mini-Con: Perceptor team. Totally new molds, some improvements, some deprovements (or whatever the proper word for that is).
  • Wave Three
    • REVIEW
    • Omnicon: Arcee - Streetbike motorcycle with big Energon crossbow.
    • Terrorcon: Insecticon - A Rhinoceros Beetle with an attitude (and an Energon weapon that turns him into a Hercules Beetle).
  • Wave Four
    • No review for this wave, they came out again as part of wave 5.
    • Omnicon: Energon Strongarm - Recolor of guess who.
    • Omnicon: Offshoot - Recolor of Signal Flare.
  • Wave Five
    • REVIEW: Includes new-packaging versions of Wave Four.
    • Terrorcon: Doom-Lock - Recolor of Cruellock.
    • Terrorcon: Command Ravage - Recolor of Battle Ravage.
  • Neo-Combiner Limbs
       The last batch of Energon Basics are all limbs for one of three five-team combiners that I refer to as Neo-Combiners. The Air Team review includes general comments on the concept. The core figures are Deluxes, and will be reviewed below in that section. Combined figures will be discussed in the reviews of the core figures.
    • Air Team: Neo-Aerialbots. A1 Treadshot (F-22 sort of), A2 Sky Shadow (A-10 sort of), A3 Terradive (Sky Shadow recolor), A4 Windrazor (Treadshot recolor). Review now complete.
    • Destruction Team: Neo-Combaticons. D1 Stormcloud (orange helicopter), D2 Blight (yellow AA tank), D3 Blackout (purple helicopter), D4 Kickback (green AA tank). D1 and D4 came out first, D2 and D3 came later. Review now complete.
    • Construction Team: Neo-Constructicons. C1 Sledge (power shovel), C2 Duststorm (crane), C3 Wideload (Duststorm recolor), C4 Bonecrusher (Sledge recolor). Review now complete.

DELUXE

   

  • Wave 1.0/1.5
    • REVIEW of Wave 1.5: Hot Shot, Inferno, Starscream. Wave 1.0 has Rapid Run.
    • Hot Shot and Inferno: Yellow sports car and red fire engine can combine with either on top. When Hot Shot is on top, it's called Powerlinx Hot Shot, for instance. Hot Shot looks similar in car mode to Armada Hot Shot, but the robot mode is almost totally different. Hot Shot is not very poseable, but Inferno is quite good in that regard.
      • Late Tip: If you put Inferno on Hot Shot backwards for PL Inferno, you can fold Hot Shot's arms back to the sides and raise the hood 45 degrees to form a chest for Inferno. This does mean the feet are on backwards, of course (spinning the boots around to face the front may look better, but the figure can't stand this way). Credit to Drogn for this mode.
      • Another Late Tip: I am informed that Inferno's gun will come off the gray base piece, you just need to pull straight out (along the length of the barrel) with sufficient Excessive ForceTM. Credit to JediTricks.
    • Rapid Run: Armada Sideways recolor. REVIEW as part of a clump of other recolors reviews done at the same time.
    • Decepticon: Starscream - F-22 Raptor with big missile launchers stuck on the sides. The mold uses many of the same ideas as Smokejumper, but is entirely new (and larger).
  • Wave Two
    • REVIEW of Prowl, Rodimus and Snow Cat.
    • Autobot: Prowl - Formula Racer. Also has elements of the classic and Mach Alert versions, but mostly looks like a scaled up Mini-Con Swindle. Has been confirmed to be a combiner.
    • Autobot: Rodimus - Semitractor modified for racing. Confirmed to be a combiner, with Prowl. Packaging seen on eBay has this as a silver cog set, Landmine is the red cog.
    • Decepticon: Snow Cat - Um, a snowcat. Halftrack ski vehicle thing. Vehicle mode has backpack cannons reminiscent of G1 Onslaught.
  • Wave Three/Four
    • REVIEW of Demolishor. REVIEW of Downshift and Tow-Line, which I'm leaning towards calling Wave 4 due to the large time separation between them and Demolishor.
    • Decepticon: Demolishor - Green dump truck with missiles stored in the dumper.
    • Autobot: Downshift - Sportscar in G1 Wheeljack's color scheme.
    • Autobot: Tow-Line - Blue and red TV van. Separates into robot and base like the classic Ironhide, but also has clear Skids homage bits. Can silver-cog combine with his base for a sort of mecha-centaur mode.
  • Wave Five
    • REVIEW of Sharkticon, Slugslinger and Energon Hot Shot. These three and Downshift/Tow-Line seem to be shipping together in some places, without Slugslinger in others. Hasbro's trying to confuse me, apparently.
    • Autobot: Energon Hot Shot - Silver recolor with a lot of yellow robot bits.
    • Decepticon: Sharkticon - A sort of cross between a shark and a submarine. Not a Terrorcon, despite the animal motif.
    • Decepticon: Slugslinger - A twin-cockpit fighter jet. Very floppy.
  • Energon Kicker with High Wire: Not the Microman version released in Japan, this is a new version that comes with a larger High Wire that's to scale (more or less). Seems to be shipping either with the Neo-Combiner Cores or on its own as wave 6.5.
  • Final Recolors
    • Armada Recolors: Show-accurate recolors of Cyclonus (in urban camo) and Demolishor (in green and gray) that were released early on in Japan, and have become a Kay Bee exclusive in the U.S. I have seen them, they look nice, but I'm not buying them.
    • Energon Starscream and Roadblock
      • Energon Starscream: Recolored in a G1 Starscream homage color scheme, different from the Nightscream Reverse recolor released in Japan.
      • Roadblock: A recolor and slight remold of Inferno as a crane truck, evoking G1 Grapple.
  • Neo-Combiner Cores
    • Storm Jet and Superion Maximus: Air Team. Jet bomber of some sort that evokes the X-70 Valkyrie. Looks good, horrible stability. And that goes for Superion Maximus too, although at least Storm Jet has great poseability. Review now complete.
    • Steamhammer and Constructicon Maximus: Construction Team. Steamhammer is a power shovel, kinda weird in vehicle mode but good in robot mode. Constructicon Maximus looks a little weird, but great stability and poseability. Review now complete.
    • Barricade and Bruticus Maximus: Destruction Team. Barricade is a missile truck. Review now complete. Best of the three.

ROLEPLAY

   More kid-scale weapons, this time bigger and more impressive than the Armada ones. But more expensive, at the $20 level.


MEGA

   A mix of recolors and bigger combiners at first, with new non-combiner molds coming in later on.

  • Wave 1.0/1.5
    • Autobot: Treadbolt - Recolor of Armada Scavenger. Ships with Ironhide as Wave 1.0. Finally got this on clearance, although I shoulda been more careful, got a Rollbar with a bad paint app for the Hound-like star on the hood. Not sure if this is an actual change or just mold variation, but Treadbolt does not need a Mini-Con on the live hardpoint to fire the missile. Let's just say it's a good thing I wear thick glasses.
    • Autobots Ironhide and Jetfire: REVIEW - Ironhide looks like the name Trailbreaker would be a lot more appropriate, but Jetfire looks like a smaller version of the Armada Jetfire. However, despite being Megas, these can combine with Hot Shot and Inferno, but it looks kinda weird. These two ship together as Wave 1.5.
      • Late note on Ironhide: it takes excessive force, but the top of his head can be slid forward to cover the eyes in vehicle mode.
      • Late notes on Jetfire: Jetfire's visor can be raised. And apparently some have a sound effect made when you push the claw-closing button, but others do not (people have opened up the chest and checked the electronics connections to confirm that theirs do not have any sound effect for that). I do not know how to determine from the package which has the extra sound. Reportedly, Jetfire's gun can fall apart, the trigger piece breaking in two and flying off.
  • Wave Two: Just a single figure, available in very limited quantities on its own.
    • Decepticon: Mirage - Speedboat sort of thing, with a very Gundam robot mode. REVIEW (includes review of recolor Dreadwing).
  • Wave Three: Mirage will likely also be shipped with this wave, in the place of a Shockblast would be my guess. REVIEW of Cliffjumper and Shockwave. Cliffjumper review updated when Shockwave review was written. Review now includes Six Shot.
    • Autobot: Cliffjumper - High speed desert buggy, gold cog combiner. Shoddy vehicle mode.
    • Decepticon: Shockblast - Homage to G1 Shockwave, turns into a satellite and a maser tank.
  • Wave 3.5: Just recolors, not buying Ironhide. Dreadwing review lumped in with Mirage above.
    • Autobot: Energon Ironhide - A sort of Hound-homage color scheme, intended to go with Cliffjumper.
    • Decepticon: Dreadwing - Mirage recolor with a lot of baby blue, possibly intended as an homage to G1 Scourge. Techspecs are solid "?".
  • Wave 4/5: Wave 4 was Energon Ironhide joined by Beachcomber (recolor Cliffjumper), Mega Dinobot two-pack and Wing Saber. I have yet to see the new molds in stores, they seem to have gone almost totally to scalpers, with a handful of actual fans (other than me) getting 'em. Wave 5 took Wing Saber and Mega-Dinobot and added Alpha Q and Six Shot (Shockblast recolor), and shipped just about as badly, since many stores were giving up on getting new Energon and just waiting for Cybertron. Then, before any serious penetration had happened, Mega-Dinobot was replaced with Overcast (recolor of Jetfire). I'm passing on all the recolors and just putting the three new molds in this review, which is complete as of 4/1/05 (no, not an April Fool's gag).
  • S.W.A.T. Team: K-Mart exclusive two-pack of Prowl and Checkpoint (Rodimus). REVIEW includes Superlink Nightscream Reverse (G1 color scheme Starscream recolor) because I got it the same day.

ULTRA

  • Wave 1.0/1.5: 1.0 is Tidal Wave and Ultra Magnus. 1.5 is Tidal Wave and Scorponok.
    • Decepticon: Tidal Wave - An energy-crackling recolor of Armada Tidal Wave, no electronics as earlier hinted at. REVIEW as part of a cluster of recolor reviews.
    • Autobot: Ultra Magnus - Recolor of Overload, with extra Space Team recolor set included to justify the category boost to Ultra. Might buy it if I ever see it in stores.
    • Decepticon: Scorponok - REVIEW - Scorpion, robot and jet, it does evoke the original Scorponok in many ways. Leader of the Decepticons when Energon kicks off (actually, leader of the Terrorcons), as Megatron is...indisposed.
  • Wave Two:
    • Autobot: Landmine - REVIEW. A sort of crane truck halftrack thing. The cab becomes the base robot, the rear half becomes super armor (Brute Mode) or a combat drone. Landmine is the red cog Powerlinxer.
  • Wave Three:
    • Autobot: Bulkhead - REVIEW. A helicopter with a big chunky thruster pod that turns into a drone or becomes a Brute Mode backpack. Another Red Cog.
      • Autobot: Quickstrike - Recolor of Bulkhead, much better colors. Shipping in the final Ultra assortment with Landquake and Scorponok. Review is part of the Bulkhead review.
    • Autobot: Landquake - Shipping with later sets of Bulkhead, this is a Landmine recolor in white and blue. I don't think I'll get this.

SUPER and larger

  • Wave One:
    • Autobot: Optimus Prime - REVIEW. Sold as a set, it's a cab, trailer and four vehicles. The vehicles transform only into limb extensions for the chunky Prime, making him more of a Scramble City or MegaZord type. Looks great in combined mode (and reminds me of a Yuusha toy Thunder Baron). The trailer looks kinda sad in any mode, being a parallelogram, but at least it kinda covers the kibble in the back of Prime's cab mode.
      • How To Be Sure Of A Faceplate - Look on the back of the box for a stamped-in number. This is the day of packaging, with the first digit being the year (3 for 2003, 4 for 2004), the next three being the day of the year (so 002 would be January 2), and the last being a timestamp. Any version of Energon Prime with a datestamp of 40331 or higher will have the faceplate, according to Hasbro. Lower numbers may or may not have it, no guarantees.
    • His Own Side: Unicron - Recolored in a darker scheme. Dead End has been redone in blue and green to look like an Earth-type planet (no painted detail, just the yellow bits are now green and look like triangular islands or something). Probably the same $50 price point as non-goth Unicron, but some stores are raising the price point. A few even have cheap ArmadaCrons right next to expensive EnerCrons. Some have reported that the wings are stiffer, although it's uncertain whether this is a deliberate design fix or just a happy accident resulting from the different batch of plastic used.
  • Wave Two and beyond:
    • Decepticon: Megatron - REVIEW. A space jet sort of thing with a very G1 Galvatron head, no doubt will be recolored and renamed Galvatron in wave 3 or 4. Comes with a partner that strongly resembles Armada Megatron's tank mode, but only has vehicle and weapon "modes," being analogous to Prime's drone force. Interestingly, the Japanese Superlink version of the toy is about two inches shorter, possibly because villains don't sell as well in Japan and they didn't want to risk a Super class villain.

    • Autobot: Omega Supreme - REVIEW. A crane truck and battleship that do a symmetric docking thing to make a giant robot, and the robot can be moved around a bit to let Prime's cab be inserted (a la Powermaster Prime) for a huge robot that uses Prime's drone limbs as weapons, and which has a Headmaster-style head. This is a Unicron-size Supreme toy.
      • According to Ben Yee, Hasbro had no intention to name the components. The combined robot is Omega Supreme, and that's it.
    • TRU Exclusive: Mini-Megatron/Powerlinx Optimus Prime Two-Pack - REVIEW. Also available online via Amazon.com. Previously Japanese-only smaller version of Megatron and Deluxe "silver cog" Powerlinxing Optimus Prime packaged together. Megatron is a faithful 5/6 size cut-down, and Prime is...clearly the product of some serious effort.