What were "Game Changers" in the world of third party?

Discussion in 'Transformers 3rd Party Discussion' started by ThatOneReallyTallGuy, May 16, 2024.

  1. ThatOneReallyTallGuy

    ThatOneReallyTallGuy Well-Known Member

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    Basically, what releases changed the conversation? Was it because of scale? Technique? Paint? Accessories?

    What do you think were the 'big' releases by 3rd party companies that pushed the envelope or evolved the landscape and why?
     
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  2. Currywurst

    Currywurst Heaven And Hell 2001 nostalgic ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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    Fanstoys Quakewave and Fansproject Protector come to mind.
    Newage's seekers too probably, for their complexity at the legends scale.
     
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  3. zeroblue2099

    zeroblue2099 Well-Known Member

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    DX9's Legends Ironhide and Blurr were the probably the first of the whole 3P legends scale. Iron Factory's Slammer and Sixgun were released slightly before or after, but were primarily pitched as accessories for Metroplex.

    Maybe Iron Factory's Ultra Magnus.
     
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  4. Barebot

    Barebot Well-Known Member

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    I nearly typed 'MP-10' and then my brain woke up :D 
     
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  5. Jazzymouse

    Jazzymouse Well-Known Member

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    I remember MMC's Cyclops (HOS Shockwave) being a massive deal. Still a thing of beauty, albeit a fragile one, today.
     
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  6. Hyoumaru

    Hyoumaru M.S.B.S. ver. 10.5

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    I THINK Newage's Flipper applies, it's what basically kickstarted the whole "MP-proportions at Legends scale" war that Newage and Magic Square have been waging, meanwhile Iron Factory stuck to a more stylized "small" proportion look.
     
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  7. crdavismusic

    crdavismusic Vectron Labs-Only Collector

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    I think this is a pretty good discussion on the subject:

     
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  8. Snaku

    Snaku Primes Don't Party

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    Funnily enough, I think Masterpiece Ironhide and MP-44 Optimus are releases that changed the 3P conversation, at least as far as Masterpiece. Ironhide because he was the first to go nearly full toon in bot mode, a direction which 3P almost immediately followed, and MP-44 because he showed a new level of complexity that 3Ps were were more than happy to imitate. We also saw small features, such as 44's hands, almost directly copied - I believe Transform Element had an additional thumb joint but was otherwise very close to 44's hands. We've also started seeing 44's disappearing hip skirts being incorporated into 3P figures, particularly Magic Square's.

    As far as actual 3P "milestones," Quakewave and Scoria are probably the big ones from early days. I don't actually like QW as he just doesn't look like Shockwave to me (those nearly rectangular legs just don't fit) but there's no arguing that he was a big deal and he might've even kicked of 3P MP altogether (I'm not sure as I wasn't watching at the time). I found Apollyon to be a pretty big milestone and I still think he fits with MP-10 fairly well, even if his transformation was ridiculous by today's standards - he was my first introduction into 3P and I doubt I'm alone in that. I can't point to one specific release but FT's sculpting and paintwork has gotten pretty well refined over the years, to the point that where once I considered them overpriced and overrated, now I consider them to be among the most beautiful Transforming figures out there (IronStar's figures being the only real competitor imho)... and also still a little overpriced and overrated. I think their Soundwave was when I finally got over myself and fell in love with FT's work.

    Again, I can't point to a specific release that started it (perhaps somebody here will know), but the advent of improved KOs changed the landscape as well. The Black Apple movie Optimus Prime easily trumps the figure it's based on and is so good that I couldn't resist buying it despite hating those movies. Infinite Transformation's Megatron is sturdier and actually fits together in alt mode better than the original (it has since shown some pretty nasty yellowing so it's somewhat fallen from its pedestal but I still have him as my MP Megatron). One could also argue that KOs in general have been a game changer - where they were once cheap crap made of shampoo bottles, today an MP KO will normally be almost as good as and sometimes even better than the original (Hound).

    This one is probably more just a me personally thing but I found XTB's Menasor to be a game changer. Beautiful but just plagued with issues. Parts falling off, Drag Strip's front end just tearing right off as if it were made of cheese, XTB's refusal to give any indication of future pricing, and the trailer was made of a brittle plastic that had tabs breaking off all over the place (might've only been two or three but I remember feeling like it was nonstop at the time). They weren't XTB's first issues with poor quality but sticking all of these issues together along with the constant revisions to what they had promised (Motormaster was meant to come with two trailers, then one, then the trailer and was a separate $200 purchase and many of the promised accessories were split off into another $75 purchase which completely erased the "bargain price" of the other components). These releases were so bad that they put me off of XTB forever (though I did finally break that rule for Runabout and Runamuck), and is probably where my interest in MP started to cool, though it was quite some time before I finally dialed back my MP purchases and that was likely more to do with space than anything else.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2024
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  9. Barebot

    Barebot Well-Known Member

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    I'd count MPP10 as one of those improved KOs, especially with his better proportioned legs. He lives on my desk full time and is possibly my favourite Optimus that I own.
     
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  10. Bountyan

    Bountyan Well-Known Member

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    TFC Hercules was a massive event back in the day.
     
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  11. Snaku

    Snaku Primes Don't Party

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    It's amazing how far just lengthening the legs took him. I mean I know he was bigger overall but what I mean is that MP-10 was great at the time but his proportions were goofy. Gorilla arms and squat legs. But stretch those legs out and suddenly the arms don't look too long anymore and he just looks great overall.
     
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  12. Mobb One

    Mobb One Godmaster

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    the igear Masterpiece Coneheads. IIRC they pre-dated quakewave by several years as the first 3rd party MP. This marked the beginning of the push beyond 3rd party CHUG. Back in the day, someone was selling masterpiece coneheads on ebay kitbashed from MP-03 and they looked fantastic. Igear somehow took the design (whether or not with the designer's consent, I don't recall) and mass produced it. They were pretty decent overall. However, this was before MP-10 was announced I think, so I passed on it not wanting a self-contained set of seekers and coneheads who were out of scale with Optimus and Megatron. Then, they eventually sold the 3 as a set for $322. By that time, MP-10 was announced/released, andI remember thinking at the time that $322 it was a bit pricey for the set, but it looked like Masterpiece was about to take off from Takara. So I pulled the trigger.

    Quakewave eventually came after the igear coneheads, and essentially from that point on I mainly looked for and focused on MP from 3rd party.

    Other notable events: TFC Hercules, MMC feral rex, proving 3rd party combiners were better than the hasbro efforts (or lack of effort). Toyworld Constructor/devastator, the first MP scaled combiner. Huge. Biggest 3rd party MP in a collection until the Omega Supremes came out.

    Grandfather event: City Commander
     
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  13. Predakwon

    Predakwon ...Green Lantern's light!

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    Fansproject Colossus(I mean sales soared for that Bruticus set after)
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    Fanstoys Quakewave
     
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  14. Dirge121

    Dirge121 I'll be your end of days

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    A few example always spring to mind for me. Please correct me if I’m remembering any of these wrong.

    Fansproject Magnus armor - First major add-on kit.
    Fansproject Warbot Defender (springer) - First full 3rd party figure (if I’m remembering right)
    TFC Hercules - First 3P combiner
    Fanstoys Quakewave - First 3rd party Masterpiece.

    What was the first Legends scale release?
     
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  15. deaculpa

    deaculpa Stand Alone Complex

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    fansproject City Commander - i think the first full upgrade kit.
    The first kos of the mp seekers, i want to say igear….
    TFC hercules, first full combiner.
    MMC Brtuicus- fist self-contained combiner
    Magic square legends optimus V2/Devastator-
    first MP-level legends (thats imo)

    oh this about BSF? i’m out.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2024
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  16. brickonator

    brickonator Well-Known Member

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    I don't know if I can identify the exact figure to do each thing (or if you can really pick a single figure for each milestone), but I think there's some important sub-categories too in addition to stuff like "first MP", which everyone else has covered pretty well.

    Things like the shift from the plausible deniability of "an interpretation of X" to "clearly character X meant to fit into existing lines like Generations or MP". I think this was a pretty significant cultural moment. I'm not even talking about toy vs toon, but the shift to making toys that unquestionably are meant to be Transformers, and specific versions of them too. Compare something like City Commander which was an Ultra Magnus-alike to something modern like XTB which is unquestionably Sunbow G1 MP. To be fair, Hasbro did this transition too in Generations when they shifted from stuff like a modern reimagined Stealth Bomber Scourge into essentially MP-mini SS86 Scourge.

    The rise of accessory packs (energon cubes), to significant upgrade kits (City Commander), to whole figures (Hercules), a brief death of 3PCHUG, and now a resurgence of upgrade kits, particularly using 3D printing.

    The embracing of "combiner kibble" all the way to whole "skeletons" for combiners. Something like Hercules was nearly all-built-in in his base form, and even stuff like Maketoys Giant had things like the combined forearms become little trailers, whereas most combiners now incorporate a fake hip section at minimum (with the notable exception of MMC who use it as a selling point). There may be a new trend emerging of adding additional members to become those add-on parts so that they don't just go in a bin when uncombined.


    And comparing it with Maketoys Giant was the prototype for every "____ Wars" to come.
     
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  17. GrimLocke

    GrimLocke Cultus Volcanicus

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    I'm pretty sure Slammer and Sixgun were first, and I think it's insignificant to the scene that Legends were marketed as scaling with and not just accessories for Titans.

    Iron Factory's War Giant is what got me into 3PL, and it felt like a qualitative shift in the scene. Though, I think Magic Square's Bruticus might be even more significant for Legends Combiners.

    And, Iron Samurai's Grimlock seems like the moment where that line had its first big break given how many extra runs were added to its initial launch window. Tho their forthcoming IFIS Menasor seems like it'll be even more significant.

    You couldn't smell that from the title? :lol 
     
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  18. lordcryotek

    lordcryotek M'Hael

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    Fansproject Crossfire-first third party figure I felt was worth buying
    Fans Toys Quakewave-started the mp 3p craze
    Tfc Hercules-first combiner
    Feral Rex-first high quality combiner (imo)
    Mmc Kultur-started the idw accuracy, innovative articulation for its time
    Mmc Bruticus-first all in one combiner
    Optus Pexus-innovate articulation
    Newage Prime- blew up the legends game
    Ms Devastator-mp intricacy at a legends scale
     
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  19. zfarsh

    zfarsh Big Penguin Chief

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    For me, in historic moments for 3rd party:

    #1) FT Quakewave (the REAL beginning of 3rd party...)

    #2) MMC Feralcons vs TFC vs UT Predaking: this was the second versus after TFC vs MT Devastator, but i think it was the more defining one

    #3) FT Roadking: High Engineering for trunk to go compact for Robot mode, and super articulation for bot mode.

    #4) NA Optimus Prime: MP in legends scale, and the bling paint.

    #5) NA Jetfire EX: The Jetfire I needed since my childhood, doesnt get better than this, and my current top toy.

    #6) NA Sludge: Best G1 Dinobot ever made till now...

    #7) MS Bruticus: Finally a REAL combiner with perfect 3 modes AND stable combined mode AND not too much kibble AND great articulation.
     
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  20. LoserBroadside

    LoserBroadside Your ship just came in.

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    Magic Square Transporter was the first legends figure that made me take that scale seriously as a collectors line.