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Series: Generations Thrilling 30
Allegiance: Autobot
Categories: Voyager Triple Changer
Year: 2013

Autobot Springer was built to be a tough guy. Everything about him, from his nickel-plated blaster cannon to his bad boy attitude, is calculated to communicate exactly what he wants it to - that he's a no-holds-barred, take-no-prisoners kind of guy. He prefers to fight alone, trusting his skills and luck to get him out of tight spots, rather than relying on his fellow warriors. After all, other Autobots fail. Autobot Springer never does.

Robot Mode: Springer’s robot mode is based on Nick Roche’s design for the IDW comic Last Stand of the Wreckers, though he does look quite a bit slimmer than the broad powerhouse he was depicted as in the comic pages. Otherwise, though, he’s a near-perfect match. A tall, broad-shouldered robot warrior with excellent articulation, great detailing, and a head that is so perfectly Springer I just adore it. He’s even got that expression down pat, the one that says “I’m gonna kick your ass and there is nothing you can do about it!”

Seriously, this might just be one of the best Transformers robot modes I have ever seen and that’s even more impressive considering that they had to cram not one but two alternate modes in there. There is almost no kibble, the articulation is superb (he’s even got twisting wrists), and all the parts hold together solidly. Just about the only thing slightly negative you can say here are Springer’s feet, which are a tad small and slightly angled, so putting him into that kicking stance seen in the pictures above was really a feat. Apart from that, though, no problems at all.

Finally, the weapons. Apart from his customary rotor blade sword, which works very well, you also get a giant two-missile blaster for Springer. Both weapons fit him very well and the big blaster works fine also, despite being so big. So bottom line: a really, really good robot mode that might just be the best Transformers robot mode I’ve seen in years.

Alternate Modes: G1 Springer was a triple changer, though one must admit that his two alternate modes didn’t really look that different from each other. Not so this new Springer here, who is also a triple changer and manages to have two alternate modes that do look different.

The first one, and the one Springer is best known for and has used almost exclusively in both cartoon and comics, is the helicopter mode. Now the helicopter does look a bit cobbled-together, but everything holds together pretty well and there are no loose parts flapping around. Granted, the sides of the helicopter (the robot mode arms) aren’t the sleekest design ever, but the rest looks pretty good, including the rear. They did leave out the rear rotor, but one assumes Cybertronian science has come up with a way to steer a helicopter even without one. The big gun can go underneath the cockpit or you can leave it out, in the latter case a front landing wheel can unfold from there. So all in all, not a perfect helicopter mode, but close enough.

Springer’s second mode is a car and the pieces fit together a bit more naturally here than in helicopter mode. Of course it doesn’t look like your typical average Earth car, but still a whole lot more realistic than that science fiction vehicle G1 Springer became. The rotor blade sword can store underneath and the big gun can go on top. Just about the only thing I’d have liked to see improved is the rear. If those two side fins could have come together to form a single rear spoiler... other than that, though, a very good car mode and, to me, the better of Springer’s two modes. No complaints.

Remarks: Springer was one of the main characters in the third season of the G1 cartoon series and the leader of the Wreckers, the Autobots’ special forces unit, in just about every Transformers comic book ever. Interestingly enough he was never the loner he’s supposed to be according to his profile on the packaging box, neither in comics nor cartoons. Twice he almost became the next Prime, successor to Rodimus, once in the cartoon and once in the comics, but it didn’t come to pass. Anyway, despite being a major character, the only toys Springer has received since his G1 days were repaints of existing Transformers (most of them helicopters), never an original figure of his own. So for a long time most people (myself included) considered the Warbot Defender from Fansprojects the ultimate Springer toy. Until this one here came along.

So while I’m not saying that you should throw your Warbot Defender into the trash, it is only fair to say that Hasbro has quite clearly beaten Fansproject here and not only because the figure costs maybe a third of what the Defender originally went for. This is most definitely by far the best Springer we’ve had yet and a very nice Transformer apart from the character, too. He’s got a great robot mode and two decent vehicle modes (neither perfect, but both fully sufficient) that manage to look different from each other despite being the same figure. So my bottom line here is simply this: buy this figure! Nothing else needs to be said. Buy it now!

Rating: A
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