Minicon Appreciation

Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by CyrDraconis, Dec 12, 2011.

  1. CyrDraconis

    CyrDraconis Well-Known Member

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    I realize we have a ton of 'appreciation' threads running around...what's one more? -I- appreciate the opportunity to ramble.

    I'm a sucker for small robots - my favourite size classes are deluxe and below. And before Legends/Legions, there were minicons...I have a whole box of 'em somewhere, and picking up Drivetrain and Brakeneck from a Biglots discount bin spurred me to go find 'em.

    Yes, the minicon-class toys have a bit of a reputation, either as overgrown micromasters or (contributing to) overcomplicated gimmickformers. Most lack what many consider basic articulation, there's zero compatibility with accessories, and recent releases are rather expensive for what one gets. Some of the molds - particularly the newer ones - are unstable and/or scrawny. Then there's the 'scale, what scale' factor, more egregious than usual, where a skateboard and a submarine are in the same size class - at least Cyberverse has 'big' and 'small' characters!

    And yet I still like them. More, I like both sides of the spectrum - though I must admit bias, I've deliberately avoided the animal minicons.

    Minicon-activated gimmicks (hi there, Armada), well, they can spin on their hollow 5mm posts. I still think a tiny racecar clipped onto someone's arm looks dumb. But taken on their own, most of those tiny racecars are pretty cool. Take the two I just picked up for example. Brakeneck may as well be a tall micromaster, but he has seperate legs, can kneel, can point...Drivetrain can hold a running pose okay, even if he doesn't have forward-back shoulders; knees and elbows are perfectly viable.

    And then there's the other side where the minicons -are- the gimmick - I likes me some targetmasters, even the PCC guys. Understandably, the early minicon combiner sets were pretty weak; the Starsaber and Skyboom combinations were unstable as hell. But sets like the Emergency and Air Assault triplechangers were incredibly neat, and while the PCC minicons have their own weaknesses, they manage.

    We've seen quite a few unusual vehicle modes at minicon scale too, things that would be likely difficult or expensive at larger size classes - the Space team gave us a rocket, crawler, and satellite all in one set (and a fairly stable combined form); the Cybertron Giant Planet minicons included a submarine and a seaplane; Classics had an honest-to-Bigfoot monster truck. Good stuff.

    Interaction with larger figures is, arguably, the original point of the minicon gimmick; for figures like the triplechangers, the weapon combiners, and the weapon/armormasters, it's kind of a requirement. I suppose the stupidity of gimmicks is relative - putting a tiny jet on someone's arm is dumb, but unfolding that jet into a claw and then putting it on isn't? And then there's non-gimmick interaction...fun with scale. For the longest time in my display, Armada Unicron was playing with Firebo(l)t, Divebomb, and Strongarm. Bit meta, isn't it?

    Thoughts? Headcanon? Favourite molds or decos? Sell me on the critter-cons?
     
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  2. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP AKA Beve Stuscemi

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    Min-cons are cool. Once I had a little society set up with Mini-cons roaming free among base TFs and other large TFs in fan base modes.
     
  3. cobra zartan

    cobra zartan Think's He's a Detective.

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    Love minicons, been a long time since i took this picture and have added many more since then.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Boy Blunder

    Boy Blunder Hasbrown'd

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    My fiancee loves minicons. Currently, we have a small selection of them - the Street Action Team (High Wire, Grindor, and Sureshock), the Air Defense Team (Jetstorm, Runway, and Sonar), Timelines Cop-Tur, and PCC Waterlog and Throttler.

    Personally, I would love to get a set of the Super Stunt Team (Redline, Servo, and Flat-Out) and the Sonic Assault Team (Combusta, Falcia, and Twirl), but that's not likely to happen. :D 
     
  5. CyrDraconis

    CyrDraconis Well-Known Member

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    Several have joined my desk-dwelling legends at home.

    That's....quite a swarm already. Hope they don't carry you off in your sleep.

    Armada or Energon Street Action, and is the Stunt Team the Skyboom combiner redeco?

    The triplechanger molds the Sonic Assault team use are some of my favourites too, even if the stealth bomber/shuriken is a pain to stand in robot mode - the Razorclaw version of that one is playing AWACS dish for PCC Bombshock at the moment.

    Minicons 'traditionally' come in threes, so I fished another one out of my box of random to join Drivetrain and Brakeneck on my computer desk - suppose that makes Makeshift - the musclecar redeco, not the Osprey - my Minicon of the Day.
    - Scale's okay with the other two, purple doesn't clash too horribly with burgundy and white.
    - Sideways knees are a small price to pay for the waist, hip, and shoulder articulation.
    - Tool-hands!
    - Sideways knees are a bonus for one thing though; he makes a decent PCC chestplate.
    One of my favourite molds, as Oilslick or Makeshift.
     
  6. Soundwinder

    Soundwinder I wind sounds!

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    I love deploying Makeshift's hands in vehicle mode. To me he's either an updated Roadhugger or Full Tilt (Trypticon's chestplate), or Menasor's chestplate (I'd like to see him mounted on either PCC Crankcase with all car limbs or MAYBE Over-Run). For the last two, it helps that his Minicon port is perfectly placed to be a PCC chestplate.

    Love me some Minicons.

    Picked up Icepick and Chainclaw on Black Friday... love the Minicon. The clear blue looks fantastic and he's pretty posable. In handheld launcher mode he's... okay. But awesome as a mounted launcher.

    I would love a redeco of the remolded Emergency Minicons with 5mm pegs. Or really, any way to get more Targetmasters released without having to buy a figure with them.
     
  7. Boy Blunder

    Boy Blunder Hasbrown'd

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    Armada, thankfully; the Energon version of Perceptor is awkward-looking.

    The Stunt Team I referred to is the Super Stunt Team featured in the surprisingly enjoyable Linkage comic. That comic is part of the reason I want the Sonic Assault team, too.
     
  8. Soundwinder

    Soundwinder I wind sounds!

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    Interesting. I think Energon Perceptor is less awkward-looking (Armada's legs look like they're always at an awkward angle). But then Armada winds up being less awkward once the whole "why is a hovercraft the same size as a bike and an ATV" logic kicks in, as well as the whole backwards elbows thing.
     
  9. RedAlert Rescue

    RedAlert Rescue Banned

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    Yep I love them I wish I had more of them especially Japanese exclusives and unreleased ones.

    I'll buy them as long as they make them I've even started buying fake ones and upscaled ones now too just to be able to keep getting them.

    And I don't mind if they are opaque or Coloured clear... If I have time I may write more on this later on my feelings about them but in general I enjoy them immensely and I actually think they are a part of the Transformers that compares very favourably with any other era from the last 27 years and to other Transformation and interaction based toylines like Microman MASK & Starcom.

    Oh and the added bonus is they go really terrifically with G1 base bots too.

    For the future sometime i'd like to see Minicons of G1 Characters sold in 3 packs. (still with minicon posts or ports).
     
  10. CyrDraconis

    CyrDraconis Well-Known Member

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    Catching up on some replies...

    If I can trick my camera into working I'll see about a picture. As for pegs, there is a near-universal solution - black Lego Technic pins. Tolerances may vary, and of course dependant on where the sockets are, but I've used them to good effect.

    Oh right, those guys! I remember when the touted gimmick for Backtrack/Oval/Spiral was 'we have ELBOWS!' Perfect examples of 'tiny car on arm, dippy; tiny car on own merits, good!', IMO.

    Far from the worst scale-what-scale issue within a team, though - and hey, I'll buy the explanation of a hoverbike. Never did pick up the ]E[ version of those guys; they decent uncombined?

    Was actually tempted to pick up the KOversize Skyblast/Payload set and bash up a two-bot 'Micro Supreme'....of course, now I can't find them.

    Regarding decos, I hold the same stance with minicons that I do with legends - it's the perfect scale to do weird or experimental schemes with.
     
  11. Lbsammills51

    Lbsammills51 Well-Known Member

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    Minicons are quite a bit of fun...I tend to prefer the combiners and the ones that can double as Targetmasters of sorts. I love the Saber teams and just need the Cybertron Thrust two-pack to have every major version of those molds.
     
  12. slugslinger2004

    slugslinger2004 TFW2005 Supporter

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    My interest in Minicons has went down over the years, but they're still cool. The Cybertron Recon Team, Streat Speed Team, Armada Perceptor and the Star/ Energon Sabers are some of my favorites.

    Micromasters are a bit better though IMO, less articulation and all. There's more play value in the Micromaster bases than plugging Grindor onto Hot Shot's arse to fire a missile.
     
  13. Shockwave9227

    Shockwave9227 I'm actually 16.

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    I love Mini-Cons, they seem and are fun to play with! I can't put it in words but something about them is what makes them fun.
     
  14. RedAlert Rescue

    RedAlert Rescue Banned

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    I only use some of them with their partners like say Cyclonus or Demolishor some of them don't really benefit from having a partner as much, the ones that are sold separately I just treat as small Transformers unless they are weapon mode ones I don't think they need to be devalued because the have a port on them...It's an option you either use it or not... something like the Destruction Team works well as a weapon others it's just a car stuck on someone's arm so it's not so useful. and Perceptor is basically just a scout that splits into 3 parts like a mini Overlord like concept.

    For me it's hard not to like any of the ones that add playability to other toys or just have a really nice feel to them as stand alone toys.

    I will admit in general I like the Armada ones more than the Energon or Classics ones.
     
  15. Starfire22

    Starfire22 Zoot Suit Riot

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    Is it odd that I like leader 1, and jolt?
     
  16. RedAlert Rescue

    RedAlert Rescue Banned

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    This needs Bumping... Minicons need love like everything does ;

    [​IMG]

    Not a Micron - but almost ;

    [​IMG]
     
  17. brr-icy

    brr-icy G1 Collector

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    why not make a new thread instead of bumping a zombie one then?
     
  18. RedAlert Rescue

    RedAlert Rescue Banned

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    I was under the impression that You are not supposed to start a new thread if one already exists on the same subject.

    The reason I bumped it is it's the 30th Anniversary and I wanted to celebrate this important and very large (but small sized) contribution to the brand.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. iDarkDesign

    iDarkDesign Rodeo Lawyer

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    [​IMG]

    :p 

    iDD
     
  20. RedAlert Rescue

    RedAlert Rescue Banned

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    It looks like one of those group shot style comic covers only in 3D plastic form.

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    Some more images ;

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    Nasty scratch this guy got from somewhere....

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