Ride me oh mighty Galvatron, ride me! Let me transport you to greater heights than you ever imagined. *Ahem* So that we may rain death upon your enemies of course. Yes, of course, that’s what I meant. Mhmm.
The Japanese version of Hasbro’s Cyclonus. What can I say? When pics first came out of Cyclonus, everybody was pleased as punch… until the final colors were announced. At which point, we got what would turn out to be a really good mold, but a terrible mishmash of paint and plastic.
I was going to give the Hasbro version a miss and wait for Henkei, but I was/AM a weak weak weeeakling. When I saw and handled Hasbro Cyclonus in person, I decided to get him. And when I played with him more… yeah, I had to get the Henkei as well. Oh well, if you know about Cyclonus and the various points of contention regarding him, having a second Cyclonus wouldn’t be too out of “canon”.
Incidentally, here’s what went on with the mini-comic included with Henkei Cyclonus:
Starscream and Cyclonus are flying around, presumably looking for something/Galvatron. They find him at the bottom of a crater. Cyclonus is yippy skippy happy while Starscream… not so much. But before Cyclonus could free Galvatron from his imprisonment, the Autobots Ironhide, Rodimus and Mirage show up. They have a firefight and the resulting collateral damage causes the crater to collapse in a rockslide. Galvatron is seemingly sealed, but a sphere of energy from beneath the rubble burst out, blasting everyone away. Galvatron is freeeeeee! Free to take command of his troops to spread fear and destruction across the universe! Well, as soon as his troops recover from the explosion at any rate. The dang wusses, Galvatron is non-plussed.
Additionally, the back of the card shows a dozen Henkei Autobots, lead by Prime, versus a piddling half dozen Decepticons led by Megatron. And beneath the Decepticons are silhouettes of upcoming Henkei… who are all Autobots/Maximals. Yikes, outnumbered anyone?
When I first saw Henkei Cyclonus in person, I thought the nosecone’s color was mismatched with the rest of him. This would seem to tally with reports I’ve heard. Due to the pricing of Henkei at that particular shop, I have him a miss. I eventually checked out some other shops and then got this guy, and weirdly? His nosecone isn’t especially mismatched with the rest of him. Nor does it seem like he’d look pink in certain lighting, as I thought he would with that first version I saw (also something noted by others). So I’m wondering if there’s a running change/variant to Henkei Cyclonus? Or perhaps it’s just the lighting?
In any case, did I mention Henkei Cyclonus looks pretty awesome? I didn’t think so at first. I thought he looked way too pale when I first broke him out of his plastic prison, but as I took pictures of him and fiddled with him, I had to change my mind. At first, I thought Cyclonus almost looked like a prototype due to how pale a tone his purple was, however, that light tone has its advantages. And that’s that it allows you to see all sorts of details that you might not have seen before. Transformers nowadays tend to have quite a bit of molded detail on them, but I just never really paid attention to Cyclonus’ until now.
Two othe- no no no, make that three four. Three Four other things should be noted about Cyclonus. One, his light piping works nowhere near as well as his Hasbro release. It still takes in light tremendously well, but the plastic they use is not “Burning Hellfire” orange, but rather, an orange so light, it’s almost light lavender/purple.
Two, the chrome wings rock. It’s true that Henkei have chrome, and not always in a logical manner. With Cyclonus, the wings are the most logical place to place the chrome. But what’s important is not where the chrome is placed, but their effect. Just look at the pics, the chrome totally brings out the detail in the wings. Rather than the flat, dull grayish white of the Hasbro release, it’s almost as if the wings have panel lines in the Henkei release, due to the way the chrome’s reflective qualities.
Lastly Thirdly, Cyclonus is unearthly photogenic. I assure you his eyes do not glow that brightly in person. Nor is his purple that deep. But he just looks so dang good on camera, that even with my limited skills, I’m pretty satisfied with ’em, even without any editing beyond resizing. Granted, most peeps won’t be photographing him, most of y’all will be playing and displaying him, but still, the camera loooooves Cyclonus.
Finally, and I can’t believe I haven’t mention this (because it just seems so obvious), his color scheme is waaaaay more unified. He may not have perfect G1 Cartoon Cyclonus purple, but dayumn if the “mess” of the Hasbro release ain’t been dealt with. I like the gray on the Hasbro version, but mostly in robot mode. In vehicle mode, he looks like a mess. But Henkei Cyclonus takes care of that. It makes his robot mode a little plain, but accurate, but it greatly improves the vehicle mode, despite a greater penchant for showing the gaps.
Downsides? The yellow on his belly. It just looks out of place, I’m afraid. Also, being able to bring out details is a double edged sword. As you can see from the pic of his back, it brings to attention all the screw holes and stuff. Also, the gaps in his vehicle mode are slightly more noticeable, as they are not covered up by the dark colors of his Hasbro release.
Jeepers, I’m talking quite alot about what’s essentially a repaint ain’t I? In that case, I’ll speed things up. Articulation? It’s good. Nothing fancy, it could have used some swivels on the thighs, maybe biceps if they could work it in somehow, but it’s adequate. His feet make it easy to balance him though, and that’s a good thing.
Cyclonus gets Nightstick, who has chromed legs and main gun barrel. The legs look weird in robot mode, chromed. But it’s fine in gun mode. Best thing about Nightstick though? His body is a pure jet black, as opposed to the dark purple in the Hasbro version. I dunno why, his black just looks awesome.
I know I’m suddenly cutting this short, but then again, I’ve spent way too long talking about a repaint. Bottom line, while the Henkei version is significantly better, it’s not overwhelmingly so. If you only get one version of Cyclonus, and price isn’t a factor, the Henkei’s the way to go. It fixes all the major issues with the Hasbro version, however, it doesn’t share some of the advantages of the Hasbro version. Namely, the darker color scheme which hides any seams and the awesome glowy eyes of DOOM.
3.6 out of 4.0
0.0 – 0.0 = I’d pay to get rid of it
0.1 – 0.5 = I’d give it away
0.6 – 1.0 = I wouldn’t take it for free
1.1 – 1.5 = Very Bad
1.6 – 2.0 = Bad
2.1 – 2.5 = Average
2.6 – 3.0 = Good
3.1 – 3.5 = Very Good
3.6 – 4.0 = Excellent