Discussion in 'Transformers News and Rumors' started by Tony_Bacala, May 24, 2020.
I misundertood too. And yup, the originals are really Epic despite it's simplicity.
Very G1 Diaclonish. Very nice.
Yeah, I would scroll up a few posts. That Construction vehicle robot art was originally Diaclone art by a Japanese artist that was then repurposed for your KO box set; not Mark Watts’ art. You can also tell because the styles are extremely different.
I have a Diaclone box set from when I was in Japan when I was a kid and it has that same art. This was well before Mark Watts coming into the picture.
I think you misunderstand... that was my entire point. I was at an age where giant robots, Japanese cartoons, and art styles were very serious business.
Remember, at that time, import and KO robot toys were in all the stores, so kids were seeing all sorts of "rebranded" stuff. Radio Shack's Galactic Man, Space Tank, Lion-Bot, Convertors, Cassette Man, Diakron/Diaclone KOs, and tons of model kits from anime series we'd never seen translated. Even before Transformers came out, I'd already seen how my Robot Machine Men Cycle-Man and Tank-Man had become subsumed into Tonka's Go-Bots.
Battletech had already been a thing (with all it's lifted mechs) since 1984. Robotech came to America in 1985, and with it also came a wider understanding that Hasbro had just been borrowing all these awesome robot designs from Japanese originals.
So kids like me had a general idea that all these robot designs were coming from somewhere else. At the time, I began to realize that my Construction Set was an a copy of the original Japanese version. It clearly had nicer art, while the Mark Watts Constructicons were simplified copies.
The Japanese original art is almost always totally superior to the US box-art. Between the clumsy art in the Marvel comics, and with all the robot KOs flooding toy shelves (often with the original art) I started to recognize that Japanese artists just had a better "robot sense".
Also interesting that the awesome KO Construction Set box-art came before the Devastator boxset, so I was exposed to it before the derivative Mark Watts version of Devastator was released on the market.
It seems to me, from seeing what he sells at his booth a few times, the telltale sign is how weirdly distorted it is. The minibots and Stunticons are prime examples. Most of my favorite art from the early years is recycled/recolored Diaclone art.
Wish they would have that stuff again...really miss aisles of transforming robots that didn't look like they were made out of junkyard parts and broken glass.
The toy culture of the 80s was a kind of golden age. I mean, we have some great toys now... but the distribution and variety aren't quite there.
I mean, on top of all the imitators and OTHER toy lines... just think about how BRIEF the first generation of Transformers really was. How many figures came out in just a few short years? It's very different now.
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