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with Scamper

Series: Generations Thrilling 30
Allegiance: Autobot
Categories: Titan City
Year: 2013

The most vast and mighty Autobot ever created, Metroplex is a member of a race long thought of as nothing more than legend. He is impossibly ancient, brought online in a time before the long memory of his Autobot comrades even began. He is a living artifact of an era when Cybertron was united, and needed defenders only against hostile outsiders. It is his memory of that peaceful past that drives him to fight for the Autobots. It is hope for the return of peace that motivates him to crush every Decepticon he can see beneath his mighty feet.

Robot Mode: Okay, first thing first. Metroplex is advertised on his box as the biggest Transformer ever. And if by “biggest” you mean “tallest”, then the claim is fully correct. I tested it, put Metroplex next to FortressBrave, and Grand Maximus, and he is indeed a tad taller than them. Not by much, but he is. If by “biggest” you mean overall mass, though, then Metroplex is still a good deal behind the massive Maximus bots, as he is much leaner and far less bulky. Still, Metroplex is a very, very big robot, no doubt about it. The original G1 Metroplex barely goes up to his knees.

Unlike the G1 Citybots, though, Generations Metroplex isn’t just big, he’s also nimble. He’s got knees, he’s got hip movement, he’s got shoulders, wrists, and elbows, and he’s got individually articulated fingers, too. The only thing slightly aggravating here is that some of the arm joints are so stiff you can barely move them, while the joints that connect the legs to the hip could definitely do with some tightening. Otherwise, though, no complaints here at all. Metroplex is definitely the most articulated Citybot ever.

Let’s talk about detailing. Metroplex’ body is covered by a truly amazing amount of sculpted details, but unfortunately you don’t really see them because he’s coloured mostly white. He comes with quite the number of stickers, which do manage to bring out quite a bit, but overall I think I’ll apply some paint here and there to further bring out the details of this awesome sculpt. Because as things stand, Metroplex just seems mostly white. Which isn’t bad, mind you, but there is quite a bit more potential here.

In terms of weapons Metroplex is loaded. He’s got a built-in double-barrelled cannon on his left shoulder, a flip-open missile launcher on his left boop, two black shoulder cannons that can double as handguns, and a big red rifle that can also be mounted on his right shoulder. There is also a fold-out gun in his right forearm, though that’s originally intended for his alternate mode. Still, Metroplex has no shortage of firepower.

Final thing: Metroplex comes with sound effects, which, to be honest, I haven’t tried out yet. I’m not a fan of sound effects. Apparently once he’s got batteries in him he says multiple phrases. His eyes also light up and there is a little lever on the back of his head that moves his pupils (only visible when they light up). Makes him the first Transformer with articulated eyes, I believe. Unicron will want some of these.

Bottom line: a very good reimagining of the original Autobot Citybot. And while there are some minor things that could be improved here, he’s still one great robot.

Alternate Modes: All G1 Citybots were triple-changers by trade. Apart from their robot (or at least bipedal) mode, they each had a city-/base-mode, as well as some kind of transport / battle platform / whatever mode. Generations Metroplex stays true to that, coming with two alternate modes of his own.

His first alternate mode is a kind of futuristic mixture between a huge wheeled transport and an aircraft carrier. It’s basically Metroplex sitting down on his butt and extending his legs before him, which flip open to form a long black flight deck. He stretches his arms out back, causing his shoulder guns to point forward now. His helmet flips over and becomes a gun turret, hiding his face. It’s still very obviously a robot sitting on his butt, but the resulting vehicle (I’ll simply call it ‘carrier’ for simplicity’s sake) doesn’t look half-bad.

You can lower a ramp from Metroplex’ right boop onto the flight deck, enabling vehicles up to Deluxe size to traverse from his chest compartment to the deck and vice versa. The flight deck also features a kind of repair bay with a robot arm for making field repairs. Both Metroplex’ head turret and the gun on his left shoulder feature room for a gunner of about Scout-size (such as Scamper, see below). While the overall scale is supposed to make Metroplex work with Cyberverse-sized figures (Scouts and Legends), it also works very nice with Deluxe-class figures, I think.

Metroplex’ second mode is, of course, his city or base mode. The transformation is a bit more extensive here. Metroplex’ legs unfolds into ramps / streets, the left side of his chest flips outward to form a helipad (with two red flip-out struts whose function I have a hard time figuring out), the left arm goes on the back as a tower, and the right arm now points forward and unfolds another gun emplacement for Scamper or similar-sized figures.

The similarities to G1 Metroplex’ city mode are very strong here, as the basic lay-out is the same. There is quite some freedom for individual design here, as there are multiple way to position Metroplex’ legs / ramps and attach his weapons, resulting in different setups. One thing that does remain the same no matter how you configure the city, though: the ramp leading down from his chest is too short. It makes for a very, very steep off-ramp for any vehicle attempting to drive down. But that’s just about the only flaw here.

Much of the detailing in the “lower” parts of the city is done via stickers here, which soothes my old-school GeeWunn heart. Very positive improvement when compared to G1 Metroplex: a car (such as Scamper) can now actually drive the length of the streets / ramps, as Metroplex’ feet and knees reconfigure all form a sort of partial tunnel. Very nicely done. Not much else I can say that the pictures don’t show better, so let me just state that I love base mode Transformers and while I still think that Fortress Maximus remains the champion in terms of best base mode, Generations Metroplex does a damn fine job as a base for Cyberverse or even Deluxe-scale figures as well.

Bottom line for the alternate modes: very faithful reinterpretations of the original Metroplex’ modes. Still, I’ll keep the big guy in robot mode most of the time, I think.

Partner / Add-On: The original Metroplex had multiple support robots with him. Generations Metroplex has reduced that to one, Scamper. Scamper is somewhere between Legends- and Scout-class size. He transforms from a black car into a mostly black robot with a red head and a red gun. I wouldn’t have picked him up individually, but he’s a good support figure for Metroplex and gives the whole thing a sense of scale (if you imagine Scamper as a normal-sized Autobot).

Remarks: In the cartoon Metroplex was the Autobots’ big gun in the third season and had numerous battles against his Decepticon counterpart Trypticon. In pretty much all of the comics, though, Metroplex was simply the biggest Transformer period, towering over all others (the other G1 citybots being more or less normal-sized Transformers in the comics). He also played an important part in the Fall of Cybertron video game and the current run of G1 comics from IDW.

I was pleasantly surprised that we were getting a new Metroplex in time for the Transformers’ 30th anniversary. I for one never expected to see another toy on the same scale as Fortress Maximus. Anyway, there are already four different versions of this toy available (this one, the Takara release, and two convention exclusives) and I expect we’ll see a Metrotitan repaint sooner or later as well. I for one am quite satisfied with this one and he is a lot of fun. I have no idea where to put him, to be honest, but never mind that. So apart from telling you all to get yourself one of him, there is but one thing left for me to say, really: I want a Trypticon on this scale!

Rating: B+
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