You know what I haven’t typed in a while?
I LOVE ‘MASTERS!
As long as they are Head, Power, or Target, I love them so much. It’s one of the reasons the recently revealed Generations update to Scoop made me so very happy. For the most part, Headmasters or Targetmasters have been the only 3rd party items I have bought consistently. When 3rd party group MasterShooter announced they would be releasing a slew of updated Targetmasters, I was one of the first to pre-order. I got mine through Captured Prey because they also had two additional sets; both two-packs and both exclusives. Though I do love Targetmasters, I have a strict policy of only buying updated versions for which I have a corresponding updated ‘bot. In the case of Fansproject’s Sidearm, I bought him because he went with Classics Rodimus. With the four non-exclusive Targetmasters from MasterShooters, they went with Kup, Blurr, Scrouge, and Hot Rod. The two Captured Prey exclusive sets were meant to be updates of Quake and Spinister’s Targetmaster partners. At the time they were announced there were no updates of either Quake or Spinister available. There was, however, a rumour of an upcoming BotCon exclusive of Spinister, so I rolled the dice and pre-ordered that set.
That was January of 2012.
I got Spinister at BotCon in April of 2012.
Last week I received my order of the MasterShooter toys.
Now, I’m not really that much of a whiner when it comes to delays in toys, especially from an unknown like a 3rd party, but 1 year, 2 months, and 15 days is a very long time to be kept guessing. After talking to Orson from Captured Prey at BotCon 2013 I understand it was actually a series of events leading to the massive delay, but I most likely won’t be going for MasterShooter releases in the future. That being said, I in no way blame Captured Prey. They are a great bunch of guys and people I will most certainly do business with again.
BotCon’s Spinister was a very welcome addition for a number of reasons. First, I am quite partial to Transformers with helicopter alt modes and he is a repaint of one of my favourite helicopter molds, Tomahawk. Second, while keeping the missile launchers from the original version of the mold, he uses the alternate head that had only been released in the TakaraTomy Dark of the Moon line as Vortex. Last and certainly not least, G1 Spinister has one of the best names as well as one of the greatest paintjobs in Transformers history.
His Timelines release reverses the blue and pink of his paintjob in robot mode, the original had blue on his legs and hot pink with the purple on his torso.
This was actually a topic of discussion at BotCon 2012’s Transformers Collector’s Club Roundtable panel. They stated that with the mold’s transformation, he would either have a somewhat reversed robot mode or an almost entirely pink alt mode. They choose to reverse the robot mode so that his alt mode would be primarily the blue colour instead. They then used paint applications to highlight him with pink and recreate the sticker details.
I’m glad they did. As much fun as a primarily hot pink Decepticon helicopter is in theory, the reality of it would seem to me a lot less like an update to Spinister than the version we got. As good of a job at an update as he is, he just doesn’t seem complete without his Targetmaster partners. Spinister was a Double Targetmaster, like G1 Scoop, which meant he was smaller but came with two partners.
I know there are some that absolutely love the massive 3rd party combiners and toys like Warbot Defender, but for me 3rd party groups are at their best when they are taking official Transformers releases and making them better. Universe Hardhead is still my favourite example. I originally passed on that toy because it wasn’t really anything like G1 Hardhead. Then along came Headrobots with an upgrade kit to turn him into an actual Headmaster and he was suddenly a must-own toy for me. All insane release delays aside, my hat is off to MasterShooter and their Shooter Master releases. They have turned Spinister back into the Double Targetmaster he is meant to be.
Avoiding the copyright game by calling Singe “Firebrand” and Hair-Splitter “Nit-Picker”, they go a step further in their bios and say that these two are partnered with a certain “Deceptive Construct”. MasterShooter also covered as many bases as possible with “a stepped handle, capable of fitting any figure with a 4mm or 5mm peg hole, and each also includes a 3mm clip”. This allows them in robot mode to be either held by or pegged or clipped to almost any Transformer.
Another hallmark of the Double Targetmaster partners are their ability to combine into one larger gun, but I haven’t had a chance to mess around with them enough to test that possibility. Mostly because I was too busy trying to figure out how best to attach them to Spinister in helicopter mode. Some have put his missiles in their launchers backwards and using the long end of the missiles to attach them. That seemed like a cheat to me, so I finally settled on attaching them via 3mm clip to the edges of his wings.
Not satisfied with simply making these guys able to be weapons for just about any Transformer, MasterShooter then added clip-on weapons that could be attached to their hands. Weapons for little dudes that transform into weapons.
Those weapons can in turn be swapped out with the weapons on their backs to allow Singe and Hairsplitter to transform into many different configurations for the bigger ‘bots to hold.
Though they are simply repaints of the molds used in the four wider releases, the exclusive set does a good job of updating Singe and Hairsplitter.
Of the G1 toys, Singe is the only one I actually own, and I’m not entirely sure where I got him as I’ve never owned Spinister himself.
Looks like I’m going to have a keep an eye out, Spinister has definitely moved up on my G1 acquisition list.