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Series: Botcon Exclusives
Allegiance: Maximal
Categories: Deluxe Convention Exclusive
Year: 2002

CatSCAN is in many ways like a lost child in the wilderness -- he knows to some degree where he came from, but is unsure as to where he will eventually end up. Brought to life by a bizarre combination of Apelinq and his digitization powers and the artificial intelligence of a medical diagnostic computer, this curious creature has found a permanent home with the Wreckers team. Armed with two battle blades of ancient Cybertronian design and a tail-mounted plasma torch, CatSCAN could easily be considered a lethal one-robot army. This fact notwithstanding, his fearsome appearance belies an inherently gentle and nonviolent personality -- it is simply not in his programming to cause harm to other beings. Lacking a Spark of his own, CatSCAN has a deep wish to understand the true nature of his self-awareness. He looks up to Apelinq as a mentor and "creator figure" and often acts as a voice of conscience among his teammates.

Robot Mode: CatSCAN shares the same mold as Beast Machines Night Slash Cheetor and Universe Night Slash Cheetor, so this review will focus mainly on the differences.

In accordance with the character’s function as a medic, the figure has been given a white and red paint job with some blue highlights. No structural changes, though the paint details on the face making it seem like he’s got a different face sculpt at first glance. CatSCAN also has a feature I don’t remember seeing on any other Transformers figure, namely glow-in-the-dark detailing. Turn off the lights and you can see glowing green patterns on his shoulders and hips, probably meant to signify that he started life as a hologram (see below).

Everything else is the same. Still an excellent figure with a great sword slashing gimmick, the only real flaw it has is the limited shoulder articulation, as he can only move his arms back and forth, not out sideways. Apart from that, a great robot mode.

Beast Mode: Nothing new here except the changed colors, naturally. CatSCAN transforms into some kind of feline predator by going down on all fours and swapping heads, done. Not the best beast mode ever, but a nice-looking one. No complaints.

Packaging: I don’t usually make a separate topic of the packaging, but CatSCAN comes in a very beautiful box that features a flip-up lid, revealing a large and nicely done tech spec, as well as a big hologram sticker of the figure itself. See the pictures above. 3H Productions certainly put a lot of love into this one. Thumbs up!

Remarks: In 1995 Robert Picardo first uttered his signature phrase "please state the nature of the medical emergency" as the holographic doctor of the starship Voyager. Seven years later the Transformers franchise got its own holographic doctor in the form of CatSCAN. Originally a medical computer's artificial intelligence program, CatSCAN was given a semblance of life by Apelinq's transfer interlink, which enabled him to convert digital objects into solid matter, in order to save a critically injured comrade. Despite not having a spark of his own, CatSCAN quickly evolved and eventually decided to stay behind on a planet the Wreckers had visited to aid the local populace.

This figure came out when 3H Productions were still running the Botcon (Fun Publications took over starting with Botcon 2005) and the accompanying stories were still firmly set in the G1 – Beast Era continuity. CatSCAN isn’t the most prolific character from this time, but I got him relatively cheap, so I don’t mind. Bottom line: another good version of a pretty good mold. No need to own all three unless you’re a crazy person like me, but unless you’re completely turned off by beast formers, you should get at least one version of it.

Rating: B
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