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Series: War for Cybertron: Siege
Allegiance: Decepticon
Categories: Deluxe Duocon
Year: 2018

Prelude: He is Skytread, better known as Flywheels, he of the big feet and a possibly made-up form of psychosomatic hyperflexia that causes him to change form when he lies. Or alternatively a severe case of multiple personality disorder where his two vehicle halves keep arguing with each other even when combined into a single robot mode. Either way, he is not exactly of sound mind. But he is part of War for Cybertron: Siege and can now join his Duocon buddy Battletrap on the shelves. Let’s see how he measures up.

Robot Mode: Let’s get the biggest difference between Skytread and Battletrap out of the way first: Battletrap was two separate robots with vehicle modes who combined into one. Skytread is two vehicles combining into one, no separate robot modes. Which is actually the original Duocon concept. Leaving out the (to me) superfluous separate robot modes gives us a much more solid an streamlined combined robot, which holds together very well and, on first glance, actually looks more like a triple changer than a robot that splits apart. Very nicely done.

Skytread is very nicely articulated and the detailing is very good, too. The dreaded battle damage paint apps are restricted to the tank tracks on his feet and legs, which actually makes a lot of sense to me, seeing as those would be the areas on a real tank most likely to be scratched up and worn. His huge feet give him a stable platform for all sorts of poses and he has plenty of hardpoints for plugging in additional weapons (such as the components of Cog). Unlike Battletrap he actually comes with weapons, one being the tank barrel of his tank mode (called IR Laser Launcher) and a smaller handgun (called Electron Breacher). Side note: I really enjoy Hasbro coming up with individual names for each Transformers’ weapons again. I really missed that.

One thing definitely worth mentioning: Battletrap and Skytread can switch pants. The connector ports holding the two components of the robot mode together at the hip are identical, so Skytread can use Roadtrap as his lower body while loaning his tank pants to Battleslash. Very nicely done. So bottom line: I love this robot mode. Nothing bad I can say about it at all.

Alternate Modes: Being a Duocon, Skytread splits into two separate vehicles, a red jet and a brown tank. The jet looks vaguely like an F-4 Phantom II model and looks good in general, but despite being only half a robot, it still has somewhat of an undercarriage (the robot arms). You can plug in various weapons under the cockpit, on top, or under the wings.

The second vehicle is a Cybertronian tank, basically the legs straightened out with the hips hidden beneath some panels. Overall the tank looks pretty good, the “damage” on the sides really coming into play here, but it does have some minor issues. The panels hiding the hip don’t close up firmly and the tank barrel doesn’t quite plug in properly. Just minor things, really, but a tiny little bit of a letdown after the superb robot mode. Also, the two vehicles cannot combine in vehicle mode like they did in G1. You can precariously balance the jet on top of the tank, but there is no connecting port or anything. So bottom line: two good vehicles, but with some very minor issues.

Remarks: Flywheels never appeared in the original cartoon, despite being shown in the opening credits for season 4 (aka the 3-part Rebirth episode, in which he didn’t appear, either). He did have some scattered appearances in the Japanese Headmasters cartoon and the Marvel Comics. Most recently he was featured in the IDW comics as part of the Scavengers, but ended up being killed by the Decepticon Justice Division. The Scavengers mourned his death by stripping his body for spare parts.

Battletrap’s appearance in Power of the Primes surprised many people, but he was quickly snatched up and even made “Toy of the Year 2018”. So everyone waited for his buddy Flywheels to appear, too, and now he did. Okay, under a different name, but whatever. In direct comparison I have to say that I like Skytread even more than Battletrap. Sure, he lacks the individual robot modes, but personally I never needed those to begin with. The vehicle modes have some minor issues, preventing me from giving him a straight A, but he’s a brilliant little Transformer. Fully recommended to just about everyone.

Rating: A-

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