2013 brings three of the most surprising, most glee-inducing releases in recent Transformers history. Releasing in ascending height we have:
- Omega Supreme -“Year of the Snake” and second of the Platinum Edition exclusives (the first being last year’s “Year of the Dragon” Dark of the Moon Ultimate Optimus Prime), a retool of Energon Omega Supreme done in the style of Omega’s War for Cybertron incarnation with just enough G1 about him to make him at home in a Generations display.
- Fortress Maximus – the holy grail for many Transformers and now Encore Release #23 coming in March/April.
- Metroplex – An unexpected Toyfair 2013 reveal, the giant city-bot gets an update via the Generations line, with a somewhat Fall of Cybertron feel to him. At 24 inches tall, he will ever-so-slightly surpass Fortress Maximus as the tallest Transformer toy ever made. His release has been declared as “Fall 2013”.
Just one of these would make for a pretty awesome lead-in to the Transformers “Thrilling Thirty” 30th Anniversary celebration, but to get all three is as awesome as it is literally huge.
Part 1: The Last Line of Defense.
Omega Supreme has, hands down, one of the best retorts of the entirety of the Generation 1 cartoon. In The God Gambit, after crash landing onto a cliff edge on an alien world and finding himself stuck in place due to low energy, Jazz tells him that they will be back to help him, adding cheerfully,
“Just don’t move!”
The ever-pragmatic Omega Supreme responds with,
“Sarcasm: not appreciated.”
Along with being just a genuinely funny moment, this whole scene highlights the biggest (no pun intended) problem inherent with using Omega Supreme — or any of the Titans for that matter.
He’s simply too big and too powerful to be used regularly. He is relegated to the “last line of defense” because he could smash the Decepticon army almost single-handedly; which would make for a very short cartoon series. Granted, in a war for energy, keeping an energon-guzzler like Omega Supreme fully functional isn’t realistic, which helps mitigate the first part but that doesn’t really factor in when you are talking about the toys. It’s no fun taking your Skywarp into battle when the other kid has an Autobot that can solidly trounce you in one hit.
Due to their cost, most of the people I know only ever had one of the titans growing up. I am no exception; mine was Metroplex. I never even got him in-hand until he was reissued in the Encore line in 2008. Originally sold as “Super Change Robot Mechabot-1” by Toybox — the same people that sold Sky Lynx — his reissue became possible when Takara merged with then-rival Tomy in 2006. It turned out that Toybox had licensed both of them from designs created by Tomy. Because Hasbro had licensed them from another company, Takara never released either of them in Japan until their somewhat-inaccurately-named Encore releases. The Encore attempts to give Omega Supreme a face in the previously vacant area under his visor.
Though the sculpt doesn’t really make it look any more like the cartoon head, I like it. He can also turn his head around to bring his cannon to bear.
Though, it wasn’t entirely necessary, as shown in many of his fiction appearances, he could still blast enemies without turning his head.
Also, as shown in many of his fiction appearances, he has really, really, reeeeeeeally cheesy dialogue. I guess you have a lot of time on your hands when you spend a good portion of the time as a base. Omega Supreme apparently chooses to use that spare time to come up with imposing one liners?
Due the nature of his “Tank with track around rocket base” alt mode, he is the very definition of a partsformer.
I’m sure this lead to a lot of Omega Supreme toys with missing pieces, especially the little yellow clips that keep his legs together. I like his alt mode mainly for the motorized tank that patrols the base’s perimeter.
In robot mode, the motor gives him an awkward, slow, shuffling walk which is pretty much the full extent of any leg articulation. His arms have very good articulation, though.
There’s a little bit of disagreement about his robot mode, namely his “wings”. In his instructions, he has the center pieces attached to his back.
However, most of his fictional appearances show him with the side pieces instead, a look that can be duplicated on the toy.
This attention to how the wings are placed becomes more apparent when you put the G1 Omega Supreme up against the new Platinum Edition release. If any true deficiency can be pointed out on this wonderful new update/homage, it’s that he has no wings at all.
Setting this aside is very easy to do when so much else about the new Omega Supreme is so very right. Whomever decided to take Energon Omega Supreme, give him a G1 paintjob, replace the Headmaster feature with a new headsculpt, and replace the crane arm with a proper claw arm is a genius.
I originally had Energon Omega Supreme but got rid of him when I became so very disappointed in a good portion of the Energon toyline. It was just too hard to look past his bad paintjob, gimmicky crane hand, and strange train engine with crane arm part of his alt mode. Unfortunately, the only part of it that makes me regret giving him up is the Headmaster part, which was removed in the Platinum Edition release. Happily the new War for Cybertron headsculpt is amazing.
Seeing pre-release pictures of him, I was concerned that the new headsculpt seemed too small, but once I saw him in person, I find I like it. It actually helps to give his body more of a sense of size. Of course, his actual sheer size also helps. The visor part of his headsculpt can be raised and a cannon flips out from the back of his head.
My major complaint with Energon Omega Supreme in both robot and alt mode, the crane arm, has been replaced by the articulated spinning claw hand/cannon from the game. This also fixes that half of his alt mode, as it is now a train engine pulling a massive cannon.
The battleship half of his alt mode is the same, but I never had any problems with it, it’s actually pretty cool.
The combined version of his alt mode, the “Cybertronian Armored Supertrain” is still complete nonsense.
For the most part, so is the “crane” transformation.
Ditto on the “artillery cannon” transformation.
None of it matter, though, when there’s already a decent alt mode made of the two vehicles and an absolutely wonderful, massive robot mode.