Saturday, December 3, 2016

Ace Tumbler - Cliffjumper

Ace Tumbler turned out to be a pleasant surprise. He seems like he could be preview of how Takara could remold Masterpiece Bumblebee into Cliffjumper.

While probably accurate to whatever vehicle this is supposed to be, I distinctly remember his cartoon version as being somewhat boxier and less flat. His front lights are painted, but not his rear lights. The floor is visible through his translucent windshield. His sideview mirrors are soft rubber so should be safe from snapping off. He rolls well on rubber tires. I couldn't figure out a way to peg or store his weapons.

It's been a long time since I've transformed Bumblebee so I'm not sure if this is similar are not, but the way the feet transform into the doors is definitely the same mechanism. As is usual with these things, going to car mode gets a little finicky toward the end as you try to clip everything together. For me, the rear wheel wells refuse to stay clipped together on both sides; I can only get one at a time. I also couldn't get the rear half to seamlessly join to the front. Coming out of car mode is very straightforward. Unfortunately there are a couple of hinges that are made from transparent plastic.

I prefer the head that is similar to Bumblebee's. The horns, crest, face, and other features are unique enough to differentiate it from the red Bumblebee head. He is basically engineered the same as Bumblebee. You'll get a sense of de ja vu when manipulating his limbs. He has Die-cast shins and feet gives him more heft than Bumblebee. My two complaints are the hollowness when viewed from above and the proportions of his chest. There is nothing next to his neck; sort of like the Fall of Cybertron Jazz figure and Badcube Sunsurge. Perhaps it's a necessity of the vehicle mode, but his chest seems a bit too wide for my taste. Unlike Bumblebee, Tumbler has solid forearms so you don't need to hunt down fillers on eBay.

His head is on a swivel and hinge. The tightness of the swivel can be adjusted, but the hinge is really floppy. His head is either fully tilted forward or back. I found this to be true on all three heads. The heads split in half fairly easily so it should be easy to add floor polish to the swivels. You can also hinge the platform that his neck sits on. His shoulders are on hinged balljoints. They do not butterfly. He swivels at the biceps, waist, and thighs. There are no wrist swivels. His hands are fixed in a closed grasp. He has single-jointed elbows and double-jointed knees. Both go well past 90 degrees. I'm hesitant to say he has a reverse ab crunch because it involves unpegging his abs, but it is an option. His hips are on universal joints. He has the slightest of feet waggle, but they don't really articulate.

His accessories include a gun, a cannon, two alternate heads, a display stand, and a display case. His gun is done in gray plastic with line work that is identical to Masterpiece Bumblebee's gun. It is slightly larger and the barrel has a different shape. The large cannon is from the pilot episode where he missed the shot at Megatron. It is almost as long as he is tall. Both weapons' handles are rectangular pegs, but the gun's handle fits very loosely in his hands while the cannon fits perfectly. I'm not sure what the story is behind the multiple heads. They are all sufficiently different from each other and all have neutral expressions. The display stand and case are appreciated, but I won't be using them.

I fully expected to be using Tumbler on my CHUG shelf next to Toyworld Bii. After getting him in hand, I find that I'm happy to put him on my Masterpiece display, at least for now. The proportions of the chest are a bit too large for my taste so X-Transbots still has a chance to dethrone him. Even then, Tumbler will still have a spot on one of my secondary Masterpiece shelves.

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