Series: Beast Machines I'm very good at what I do - maybe too good!
Night Viper is the stealthiest Maximal. His tail acts as a repulsor rocket, providing supersonic speed. Internal radar scramblers allow him to move virtually unseen in both robot and beast mode. His robot mode features frictionless surface, increasing his speed and making him an extremely hard target. Armor alloys deflect most energy pulses. Recycles enemy fire into plasma venom blasts that short circuit Vehicon circuitry.
The robot mode seems fragile at first glance because of the thin arms and the multi-jointed legs. Interestingly enough, though, the figure can be put in many different poses without toppling. The only problem is the snake-head on the back, which pulls the torso backwards a bit, so one needs to balance that out.
Viper is as detailed as is possible. With all his arm and leg joints there isn't a whole lot that could be done without resorting to microscopic scale. All these joints do wonders for him, though, both in robot and in beast mode.
Viper does carry a weapon, but more on that later. The "wings" (I don't know the biological term) of the cobra head are removed and folded onto the arms. Now you can decide: Either you fold the two wings, which now serve as weapons, onto the arms, or you lengthen the arms by one joint and leave the weapons hanging to the ground. I prefer the former, seeing as it looks better and gives the figure more room to move.
Now to the weapons, or rather the weapon. The first and only actual weapon is a yellow, transparent scythe, which unfolds from the right arm. Unfortunately it doesn't really look all that dangerous or sharp. The second weapon is really more of a shield, which Viper can hold in front of his body. On this shield is his faction crest, which can be hidden by way of a black panel. It shimmers green and one likes to take it out. If you have a lot of imagination you can have the crest pull double duty as a laser weapon (like I do). Then Viper ends up with two weapons.
As a further gimmick you can pull his beast head over the (highly detailed, by the way) robot mode head. Then you get a snake with weapons and a humanoid body. Looks strange, but I guess that's a matter of taste.
Transforming the figure from one mode to the other is relatively simple. Meaning you don't need the manual. It's not easy as such, there is a lot of fiddling involved. Still, I prefer it when I don't need to consult the manual.
Like I mentioned above, Night Viper transforms into a cobra. Seeing as we're in the Beast Machines line the animal looks pretty metallic, of course. The snake head and the torso look pretty cool, though. The only blemish are the six very visible screws (of which I think four are pretty much redundant) and the visible hands. The tail is formed from the legs of the robot mode. It starts on one foot and ends on the other. Unfortunately while the tail isn't too short, it's too thin when compared to the torso. But I think that point is debatable.
Everything looks very wholesome and apart from the hands, which you can see only after some extensive searching, nothing of the robot mode is apparent to the naked eye. The snake looks good, especially from the back.
Extras & Weapons:
Viper doesn't really have any extra gimmicks. The only thing worth mentioning is his snake head. You pull it back until it clicks, the jaw closes. Then you press the easily visible, hard-to-miss yellow button above the head and it snaps forward, opening its jaws again. Probably sounds more exciting than it actually is.
Night Viper was the last Transformers figure I got as a present (or maybe I bought it... I'm not sure). After that I told myself: Spend your money on something "sensible" or save it. It was the time of the Euro exchange and after that the price tags of the figures increased drastically (for me). Still, this figures ended up being a lot of fun for me and was a good capstone, seeing as I always wanted a snake Transformer ever since my first figure. GREAT!