Cybertron doubles and how to tell them apart
Part I: ARMADA HOTSHOT
This article was written for a variety of reasons. One was that I have run into many fellow Transformer fans online who have often asked "What's the difference between the US version of Armada and the Japanese one?". As luck would have had it, I'm in the midst of a complicated situation that gives me access to BOTH for this short period of time. So I might as well talk about it.
The other reason is because I also have 2 Star Convoys right now and it'll make another interesting article along the same lines. You'll want to follow on to the part II if that piqued your interest.
Let's start with the basics. Hasbro released a character called Hotshot in their TRANSFORMERS ARMADA line. A few months later, Takara releases a similar looking robot called HOT ROD in their MICRON LEGENDS line. If you're confused, don't be. Both lines are the same thing. Hasbro owns Transformers in the USA, while Takara owns it for Japan. Both are based on the same concept and designs. However, the toys which each respective company released are slightly different. Takara had the advantage of a later release, which meant that they had time to tweak some things and add others to make the toys just that little bit more show-accurate. A lot of it had to do with colour differences (eg, grey vs white Starscream), and minor name differences (Always a signature of this series). Hotshot simply stands out because they REALLY made a huge change to the item. That's why I have two right now. More on that later.
I know Hotshot has taken a lot of flak from the fan community due to his "toy for babies" kind of appearance, but he does have his fans, and he is not a bad Transformer, once you get used to the acquired taste. Having said that, let me HEAVILY RECOMMEND that if you haven't gotten one, and would like to, go for the Japanese version! Or, if you like the US one you have, sell it and get the Japanese one!! Takara took a toy that was OK, and fixed up a lot of things that it was lacking in, and gave it a new feature that's totally in character and really increases the play value of the figure. I hope the rest of this article goes some way to showing why.
I've divided this article into 3 sections:
30 Mar 03