Transformers Review: Bruticus (FOC) – Part 6 of 6 – Bruticus

            This is it, boys and girls… This is what we all have been waiting for. We’ve gone through 5 different reviews for the individual Combaticons, just to get to this. 
            In the original G1 series, Bruticus (or the Combaticons) was a creation of Starscream, attempting to lead his own group of Decepticons to overthrow Megatron. Each of the Combaticons was originally Decepticon rogues imprisoned in the Decepticon Detention Center, Room 217, until they were released and given a new body by the renegade Decepticon Aerial Commander. 
From left: Swindle, Blast Off, Onslaught, Vortex and Brawl
           Bruticus was the perfect soldier by Megatron’s standards – he was strong and powerful, but lack of initiative, which he does really need. Without a given order, he would just stand there and do nothing. With so much power in possession, Megatron wished that he had more than one Bruticus in his army, where he only need to point them in the right direction, in order to get the job done.
            Prior to the aftermath of the 1986 Transformers movie, Bruticus was my number 1 gestalt. It wasn’t until Predaking coming into the picture, and many more subsequent gestalts, that he would eventually be dethroned from my list. 
            Anyways, that still doesn’t take away the fact Bruticus was still one heck of a gestalt to be reckoned with.
            The Bruticus mould would eventually be reused in the Car Robots/ Robots in Disguise line and be renamed as Ruination, which also features the Scramble City gimmick.
            Bruticus would later appear in the Energon/ Superlink, in which he was called Bruticus Maximus instead. In the team, Onslaught takes the form of a Missile Tank with the rest of the Combaticons were nothing more than just drones. Personally, I don’t quite like that reincarnation though.
            Almost a decade later, upon the release of the Fall of Cybertron video game, we finally get to see a new and updated version of Bruticus, with all transformable individual robots (unlike the Supreme-class ROTF Devastator), and none of the team members are drones.
            It took me quite some time to land this figure, and I probably wouldn’t have if it wasn’t for my pal, Big Daddy V. Thanks bub, I owe you one.
            So yeah, I knew I just had to get this guy, so here I am, having myself an early Christmas present (just in case if the world does end of 21st of December later this year).

Combined Mode:
Onslaught forming torso and body
            The transformation sequence isn’t that complex, though they are not a walk in a park either. In fact, they are quite cleverly intuitive. 
From left: Blast Off and Vortex forming the arms
From left: Brawl and Swindle forming the legs
            Similarly to the original Bruticus, Onslaught would become Bruticus’s main body and torso; Blast Off and Vortex each forming the right and left arm respectively; and finally Swindle and Brawl each forming the right and left leg respectively.
            The combined robot, though quite massive in size, are unsurprisingly light, as I would’ve expected it based on the heft (or lack thereof) of each individual robot reviewed earlier.
            From the sides, Bruticus is incredibly thin for a bot that tall and wide. 
            The head sculpt is dead on accurate to the original G1 Bruticus, and Hasbro really did well to ensure that this is indeed an updated version of the classic G1 Bruticus by maintaining numerous homage such as the twin gun pack at the back; the head sculpt, the alternate modes of each individual names, as well as their names and characterizations and the overall look of the robot. 
            Articulation-wise: the head turns 360°; the shoulders rotate on soft-ratcheting joints, and move outward on hard-clicking joints; Blast Off as the right arm also rotates slightly below the shoulder and his hips acts as a bendable elbow joint; Vortex as the left arm rotates at the waist and bends at the hips, so that’s as far as the elbow joints that you’re going to get out of him; Bruticus’s waist turns; the hips maintains Onslaught’s range of movements; and finally the knees bend and are both on clicking joints. 
Size Comparison, from Clockwise from left: Unicron, Cybertron Primus, FOC Shockwave, FOC Bruticus and Reveal-the-Shield Wreck-Gar
Size comparison with 2007 Movie Leader-class Optimus Prime
            Bruticus has a surprising amount of articulations for a gestalt. 
            Size-wise: Bruticus is quite tall, though smaller than Supreme-class figures, but slightly taller than a Leader-class figure and weigh about the same as a Voyager-class figure (probably lighter than that). 
            I really do like Bruticus and what he has to offer, and he is definitely a very good update of a classic gestalt.
            However, boys and girls, if you think we’re done with this review, think again. There’s still more to Bruticus than meets the eyes.

Combined mode (Bonus #1):
Bruticus, post arms swapping and legs swapping
            If you guys (and gals) remember, Takara-Tomy released a special G1 episode called Scramble City, which depicts various gestalt robots having the ability to swap limbs, not just amongst the same team, but as well as with other teams as well.
Blast Off swapping thumb pieces
            Well, I guess Hasbro still hasn’t forgotten that since they did incorporate the idea into the designs of these Combaticons.
            That means Vortex and Blast Off can switch places with one another, as well as Swindle and Brawl, as in the depicted photos.
            In this mode, however, Vortex no longer sports the opened hand, but instead a machine (the one utilized in his Chopper mode).
            As for Blast-Off, you just withdraw the original thumb of the fist and flip out a new one.
            Articulation-wise, everything remains the same.
            While it was never officially stated in the instructions, this definitely can be done.
            However, we’re not done yet folks, in fact, we’re far from it.

Combined mode (Bonus #2):
From left: Vortex and Blast Off forming the legs
            The Scramble technology means not only you exchange each arms or each legs, it also means that the arms can become the legs and vice versa. So now we’re really gonna have more fun with these guys, won’t we?
 Brawl and Swindle forming the arms
            The transformations of each limb, i.e. from hands to legs and vice-versa are quite simple.
            While I do like how the overall combined mode looks like, there are still a little bit to nitpick. 
            Although Blast Off looks blocky enough to look like a leg, there isn’t anything on it that could act as a toe-piece in order to prevent it from toppling over. As for Vortex, the frontal cockpit doesn’t lock-in onto the body, rather depending mostly on friction to hold it in place. 
Brawl's awkwardly-designed thumb
            As for the arms, Brawl may just a little bit awkward, due to its thumb and overall look of the palm. Swindle, on the other hand look fantastic. 
 Swindle makes a good-looking arm
            Also, just in case if you’re wondering if this version of Bruticus can also wield the Sonic Cannon, then the answer is a YES. 
            Visual-wise though, I prefer this combined mode rather than the default one, because this mode seems to make Bruticus looks tougher, whereas the default combined mode looks a bit streamlined.
            Most articulations remain the same, just in case if you are wondering about that.
            Awesome mode nonetheless.

Combined mode (Bonus #3):
            Again, just like Combined Mode (Bonus #2), the arms can interchange, as well as the feet.
 Swindle and Brawl swapping sides
            The only difference is that both Brawl and Swindle still has palms.
            Another unique feature of this set is that all of the robots’ weapons can be combined into a massive weapon dubbed the Sonic Cannon. 
The Sonic Cannon
            Overall, the combined weapons looked as awesome as it is deadly.
Well, what more can I say about this set that I haven’t said already? This set oozes with fun!
I am really happy with this set. Notwithstanding those re-released figures in the Encore series, FOC Bruticus is probably the best gestalt set that we’ve got since Legends-class ROTF Devastator, and definitely one of the most articulated ones to date.
Bruticus definitely deserve to be in any collection.
Highly and absolutely recommended.

            Final verdict: 10/10.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, i'm just dropping by to give some comments on Vortex's hand. if you change the position to right hand, you still can flip out his karate chop palm, turn the thumb over to the left side.

    I did own this bruticus once, but i really dislike this figure as too many 'cost-cutting' measures i can observed in this figure, the plastic felt kinda cheap imo. and i really dislike onslaught, the truck mode is really cheap, and mine cant roll properly, the front wheel seems stuck, haha...