Hasbro held the Hasbro Pulse Fan Fest on Friday, April 9th. The event was notionally a substitute for the presentations that various units within Hasbro would give to invited fan media at New York Toy Fair, but carried out over a live stream that anyone could watch.
The Transformers section of Pulse’s Fan Fest focused almost entirely on Kingdom, with two notable exceptions.
First in the launch of the Shattered Glass subline – a thing which apparently is now being called a “capsule”. I imagine most of us will stick with the just-as-valid terminology of a subline, etc. regardless. This Shattered Glass series is going to span five toys. Thanks to Amazon Australia we have a pretty good idea about this: Jetfire, Megatron, Goldbug, and Blurr who was officially revealed today. So evidently there’s a fifth which may have slid by without getting compromised just yet.
Blurr is a redeco of the Studio Series 86 toy, with a new head. Eyepatches seem to be in this year, as Blurr is now the second retool to sport this detail, following on from Selects Black Zarak. It should be assumed these are exclusive to Pulse, though the presentation did not to my recollection explicitly say that it was. Blurr and all the figures will include issues of a Shattered Glass miniseries being produced by IDW, and featuring variant covers that are exclusive to the pack-in releases. Think along the line of the Spotlight series of Generations in 2013 and 2014.
The other non-Kingdom reveal was the $700 Robosen interactive programmable advanced robot Optimus Prime, a 19 inch robot that can move, transform, and drive itself around based on voice commands or inputs from a smart device app. It features voice clips recorded by Peter Cullen, and was demonstrated by Jay and Silent Bob to dance, have pre-loaded poses, simulated battle moves, lights, and the general appearance of near-autonomy. Did I mention it’s also $700? A similar style of transforming robot toy obviously meant to be Optimus Prime with the serial numbers filed off has been floating around for a while, but this is the first of its kind to be licensed and legitimately produced as a Transformer.
Kingdom wave 3 was shown off in full. The includes of course The Ark, Galvatron, and Scorponok which we were shown via IGN earlier this week. For more about that, click here.
The new reveals today were the Core Class Soundwave and Dracodon, Deluxes Tracks and Wingfinger, Voyager Rhinox, and in its first appearance with Hasbro, Commander Rodimus Prime.
Almost all of wave 3 is now up for preorder on Amazon. If you preorder using any of the following links, we’ll get some Amazon affiliate revenue, which will help us keep bringing you podcasts and blog updates. But as always, it doesn’t cost you anything extra to use our links!
Dracodon is a redeco of Vertebreak in bright green, but otherwise unchanged. Soundwave is all new, representing a tinier version of Soundwave’s cassette recorder mode – a micro-microcassette recorder, perhaps. And true enough, Soundwave comes with an extremely micro cassette in the form of a non-transforming Laserbeak that fits in the chest slot. Evidently no one is allowed to offer preorders for the Core Class toys at this time, but we do know that Amazon expects them to arrive around July.
Wingfinger is a pterosaur skeleton, and is Maximal/Autobot aligned in case that matters to anyone. It’s looking decidedly a lot more slim than its predecessors, but it’s hard to tell how true that is from just what we can see right now; the mass may be there, but arranged in a way where it doesn’t convey accurately if you don’t have it in your hands. During the stream, fandom-favorite Transformers team member Mark showed off his own creation, a large hybrid robot composed of the parts of all three Deluxe Fossilizers.
Tracks looks like an all new mold, or if it’s not it’s doing a good job at hiding any shared lineage it may have. The presenters didn’t out it as a “partial” of anything else, and they’re usually good at being upfront about that, so odds are this is completely new. The vehicle mode is in similar territory as Studio Series 86 Jazz with reproducing the likeness of the classic vehicle mode, with any licensing for it being a great big shrug. They also made a point to note the flying car intermode is possible, though it might look a little more adhoc than you’d prefer from some angles.
Rhinox is another all new mold, but this one looks like it could have borrowed general idea from the previous Generations Voyager Rhinox, as well as some styling choices. Like most of the Beast Wars characters so far, the design teams seem focused more on having accuracy to the real animals the beast modes are based on, and plenty of that was called out with Rhinox. The robot face though has already been called out by fans in not resembling the show model very well at all. But Rhinox does have his chain guns represented, and there’s supposed to be storage for them on the robot’s back.
Of course we’ve seen Commander Class Rodimus to some degree of detail already, since TakaraTomy opened their preorders a few weeks earlier. But Hasbro’s announcement comes with looks at two new-design blast effect parts, and during the stream, Mark took special time out to show how Rodimus had a ton of storage space in the trailer – even a completely hidden drawer under the interior deck that nobody knew about before! If you need a place to keep spare guns or explosions, this looks very useful!
There’s a little bit extra learned about The Ark today. The Teletraan-1 robot that looks like Action Master Mainframe is in fact representing that character. We’ll keep on hoping for a rerelease of that on its own in original toy-accurate colors just the same. Stored on the back of Teletraan-1 is a surprise extra: Golden Disks! The Ark will come with both the Voyager Golden Disk, and the Vok Alien Disk. While we don’t have a record player attachment for Kingdom Megatron so far, this is a fun extra to see.
From the stream and the back panel of the box, we see that Mainframe has a secondary “mode” in addition to being the Teletraan console. It folds over itself to become something like a display base piece, which features a tiny representation of the bridge of the Ark, which the slug figures like the tiny Optimus included with the Ark can affix to.
Finally, we have a Kingdom-related Pulse exclusive, the followup to the Centurion accessory pack from last year. This time it’s Tricranius, a retool and redeco of Ractonite as a triceratops in black, orange and yellow. Instead of new accessories to complete other toys, Tricranius comes with a pile of recycled blast effect parts cast in either cyan or magenta. The parts are a mix of bits from Jetfire, Omega Supreme, and a few of the Battle Masters. Like the accessory pack last year, this may not be exactly what fans had in mind when they’ve asked for the ability to buy extra blast effects, but this is the option Hasbro has gone with.
While Studio Series wasn’t talked about today, we did get a quick update after the presentation ended telling us to watch for a Fan First Friday next month which was implied to feature news about Studio Series. That means we’ll probably get first looks at things like Wreck-Gar and Gnaw then – if the leakers don’t get there first…
Thanks to all of our Patrons who are making this possible! Join our Patreon and let’s make awesome stuff happen!