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Series: Botcon Exclusives
Allegiance: Autobot
Categories: Deluxe Convention Exclusive
Function: Security Chief
Year: 2007

I´ll go anywhere in the universe, so long as it means scrapping Decepticons!
Springer spent much of the war with the Decepticons going it alone, making friends along the way, but never staying in one place for any extended period of time. As word of the defeat of the Decepticons on Klo made its way throughout the galaxy, Springer was a bit disappointed when he thought that there would no longer be a war to fight. When he was approached by Grimlock to join the crew he was leading to hunt down Bludgeon and his army, Springer jumped at the opportunity. Serving as Grimlock´s Security Chief, Springer is one Autobot that the Decepticons usually think twice about crossing.

Prelude: When people are asked to describe Springer, it’s usually something along the lines of “the green helicopter guy”. Despite being a triple changer in most of his incarnations, Springer’s ground-based alternate mode is seldom remarked upon. Not so during Botcon 2007’s Games of Deception, however, which brought us the only Springer ever without a helicopter mode. Can Springer be Springer without a copter mode? Let’s say go!

Many thanks to my buddy Fuchs Geronimo for loaning me Springer for this review.

Robot Mode: Springer here is a straight-up repaint of Galaxy Force Exigeyser / Cybertron Defense Hot Shot with no structural changes. Seeing as it’s been over seventeen years since I reviewed that figure, though, I think we can give this mold another go.

Springer is a Deluxe-class figure with, for the time, excellent articulation. His broad shoulders give him a powerful silhouette and there is a certain resemblance with the original G1 Springer’s build to be found here. While the head is clearly that of Hot Shot, just in new colors, it does work as a Springer head, too, in my opinion. A bit more yellow, especially around the chest aera, might have improved the resemblance to the G1 character, but even so: it looks great.

Springer can flip the guns of his vehicle mode onto his shoulders for firepower and use the knife attached to his leg for close quarter combat. The knife can be stored on the inside or the outside of his leg (the former being where the knife is stored in alternate mode) and can either be held in hand or attached to the wrist.

When his Cyberkey is inserted into his back, Springer’s shoulder guns flip open to unveil (sculpted) missile launchers. Also, his shoulders and lower legs also contain missile launchers, so Springer can unleash a truly massive salvo upon his enemies. So bottom line, a very nice military-styled figure. It does work as a Springer, somewhat, but either way it’s one of my favorite molds from Cybertron, so thumbs up for the robot mode.

Alternate Mode: As mentioned above, Springer is usually a helicopter. In fact whenever Hasbro introduced a new helicopter-bot, odds are it was repainted green and re-released as Springer. Not so Botcon Springer, who transforms into an armored assault vehicle with a gun turret on top. The turret can turn and the guns can be elevated for a large field of fire. Fun little feature: if you look into the windows of the armored vehicle, you can see Springer’s robot head behind it.

The Cyberkey can be used in this mode as well, of course, to unlock the missile launchers in the gun turret. Most of the other missile launchers cannot be used here, sadly, as they are now on the underside of the vehicle, but the vehicle’s front bumper can flip open to unveil yet more missiles. So while not quite as impressive a salvo as in robot mode, the vehicle has no shortage of firepower, either.

While Springer’s vehicle mode looks pretty good, there is very little “Springer” to be found here, to be honest, as the vehicle doesn’t really resemble his classic ground vehicle mode.

Remarks: The 2007 Botcon story “Games of Deception” was part of the so-called Classicsverse, a continuation of the old Marvel Comics continuity shown in the pages of the Transformers Collectors Club Magazine. In this story Springer was part of Grimlock’s crew, who were out in space to hunt down Bludgeon and the remaining Decepticons after the events of Marvel Comics Transformers #80. They briefly came to Earth when Bug-Bite, a Go-Bot masquerading as a Decepticon, stirred up trouble. The Springer toy was not part of the Botcon 2007 boxset, but available as an attendee-only figure directly at the convention.

As mentioned above, the Exigeyser mold is one of my favorite figures from Cybertron and even sporting different colors it remains an excellent figure. That said, to me it does not quite work as a Springer. Not necessarily because of the lack of a helicopter mode, but more because just painting it green isn’t enough. So bottom line: a great figure, but not a great Springer.

Rating: B
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