So in conclusion
If you’re a collector of Power Core Combiners, Steamhammer and the Constructicons is a good, solid set. Steamhammer is the most balanced PCC Commander out there, and the limbs each have an extra oomph to them that makes them a tad more worthwhile than other PCC limbs available. While they’re slightly not as good as Grimstone and the Dinobots as a standalone set, Steamhammer and the Constructicons are more compatible with other PCC sets, making these guys more versatile than their prehistoric wave mates. Recommended, obviously.
I already went on a Power Core Combiners tangent in the Grimstone review, so I guess this means I’ll be able to stick to Steamhammer and the Constructicon drones here.
Steamhammer himself is quite interesting, in that the designers opted to go the route of simple and effective with him. His robot mode is just that, simple, yet effective. He looks quirky, but nothing totally weird. Articulation covers all the basics. All in all, he’s got a solid robot mode. Transformation to vehicle is also simple yet solid. It’s very intuitive and you’ll pretty much get the vehicle mode provided you move everything that looks like it should be moved. And tabs here and there ensure that the mode will be held together solidly.
All this simplicity and effectiveness is done for a higher purpose though, and that purpose is the torso mode. Unlike previous PCC Commanders, Steamhammer is obviously designed with the torso mode in mind. The huge plow section hides the upper body of the combined form and is surprisingly successful at it. You can tell that despite the natural width of this guy, the designers still tried to make sure he has good proportions. He also holds together very solidly with strategically place tabs, much like the tabs that make sure his vehicle mode is solid, these tabs ensure the torso mode is stable.
I mentioned before that some PCC figures have flat bodies, Steamhammer does too, but he cleverly fills it up with kibble. Speaking of the kibble though, I wish that the back treads could rotate. If they did, it’d give him a whole lot more play options in terms of their positioning in both robot and torso modes. In fact, the product art on the back of the package suggests that it originally had that rotation, but this was apparently cut out in the final release.
In short, the torso mode is where it’s at for Steamhammer, but this is done without the expense of the robot or vehicle modes. The only thing I would have wished for are thicker hips, but oh well, they hold together well enough. You might need to tighten them with a bit of clear nail polish anyway though.
The drones are your standard drones. The plow with the green roof bears special mention. Due to the way it’s constructed, you might have to exert a bit of force to push the Power Core Combination Peg in, but that’s a good sign. It means the foot is stable. If the peg can be inserted smoothly, it means that the plow and axle alignment isn’t quite right, and that’ll result in the leg popping off regularly. So you just gotta make sure that bit’s inserted correctly.
The driller arm is awesome. It has a thumb that’s on a hinge, so it can be a thumb on either left or right hand alignment. This is a simple thing that I’ve often wondered, why it hasn’t been done on combiners already. Well, it’s aboot bloody time matey. The arm’s a bit stumpy, but it has wrist articulation, so I forgive it.
The excavator arm also has a thumb, though no wrist. It goes the opposite direct to the driller arm in that it’s overly long. But eh, it has a thumb, I forgive it.
The combined form of Steamhammer and the Constructicons is one of the most solid of all the Power Core Combiners. Contrary to Grimstone, Steamhammerator is also a very cohesive form despite not having a unified color scheme. I think it’s the way his upper body has the silhouette of an industrial facility and the modest, muted color scheme of this guy that brings it all together. Steamhammerator has toy aesthetics Feng Shui going on, which brings the whole thing together in harmony.
So yeah, good set. You could do worse if you’re looking into Power Core Combiners.
Pros: Balanced Commander toy. Surprisingly cohesive combined mode. Thumbs… friggin’ thumbs! Oy.
Cons: As per usual for PCC, no elbows for combined mode. Otherwise, nothing significant.