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with Blockrock

Series: Universe 2.0
Allegiance: Autobot
Categories: Voyager
Year: 2008

Working alongside his friend Perceptor, Autobot Blaster has organized a series of resistance cells to fight against ever more organized Decepticon attack squads. He is the communications and data expert, maintaining detailed internal records of all personnel and mission reports. In vehicle mode, he can travel faster than light speed to hand-deliver orders or information, or emit high-speed encoded radio-bursts up to 20 thousand miles. Together with Blockrock, he is also a powerful warrior. Both partners are always more than ready for a fight.

Prelude: Universe Blaster and his Minicon partner Blockrock are straight-up repaints of Cybertron Soundwave & Laserbeak, which I have previously reviewed. It’s been over 8 years, though, and I got this figure as a gift from my buddy Marco aka Ironhide77, so we’ll give it another go.

Robot Mode: Blaster is a Voyager-sized figure with long, skinny legs and a muscular-looking upper body made to look even more massive by the big wings he carries on his back. And, of course, he has a tape deck on his chest. After all, there cannot be a Blaster (or Soundwave, for that matter) without a tape deck on his chest. The figure comes in Blaster’s traditional colors, naturally, though there is a lot more black here than G1 Blaster ever sported.

Articulation is pretty good, only slightly impeded by the kibble on Blaster’s arms and the slight top-heaviness of his body. Blaster comes with three ‘bombs’, two of which become his weapons, the third becoming his Minicon partner Blockrock (more on him below). The weapons become a long gun and a shorter, tri-barreled gun respectively, which Blaster can hold in hand or mount on his shoulder. One of the bombs can be stored in his chest compartment, of course.

The only downside to this robot mode, aside from the slight awkwardness of the design, is the head. It’s quite clearly Soundwave’s head, just repainted. I would have liked a new head sculpt here looking more like Blaster. Otherwise, though, a nice robot mode, if a bit too top-heavy for my personal taste. I do think he looks slightly better as Blaster than as Soundwave, but again, personal taste.

Alternate Mode: Blaster transforms into a kind of alien jet that looks a bit like a Nighthawk Stealth Fighter, at least sharing the silhouette more or less. The fighter is mostly black and grey with some spots of red, blue, and yellow. Blaster’s weapons and Minicon partner (see below) can be converted into bomb mode, two of which can be fastened under the wings (rather loosely, at that) and one in what was the chest compartment and now functions as a bomb drop panel on the jet’s underside. The jet has an opening cockpit and lots of detailing scattered across the surface, looking pretty good. It’s only when looking at the jet from behind that it stops looking like a streamlined jet and more a jumble of parts. Still, an overall very good-looking spacecraft.

Partner: Blaster’s Minicon partner Blockrock transforms from a red bird (Hawk? Condor? Buzzard? Let’s call it non-specific bird of prey) into the same kind of hexagonal container as Blaster’s weapons, made to fit either under either of his wings in jet mode or – naturally – into Blaster’s chest compartment. Given the size and constraints of the alternate mode, Blockrock is a very nicely done bird with multiple moving parts (feet, wings, etc.). Definitely one of the better Minicons of the Unicron Trilogy era.

Remarks: Apart from quite a few brand-new molds, the 2008 Universe series – precursor to the current Generations line – also featured quite the number of repainted figures from the Cybertron series, so turning Cybertron Soundwave into Blaster wasn’t much of a stretch. Not sure where he’s supposed to fit fiction-wise, as he’s never looked like this in any comic or TV series, but this was the first new Blaster figure in 18 years (anyone remember the Actionmaster?) and while I do wish they had given him a new head sculpt at least, it was still nice to see him again after so long. And while I do prefer Generations Blaster for my Classics ranks, he still looks better than Cybertron Soundwave did, in my opinion. Recommended to Blaster fans and enthusiasts of alien space craft modes.

Rating: C+
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