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SWOOP

Series: Energon
Allegiance: Autobot
Categories: Combat
Year: 2004


We love to munch Decepticon metal!
Primitive in thought and simple in speech, what Grimlock and Swoop lack in intelligence they make up for in strength. They have given the Autobots the tactical upper-hand in battle time and again sending Decepticon legions retreating in fear. Swoop will often use his impressive aerial maneuvers to confuse and distract an enemy while Grimlock sneaks from behind and stomps that enemy before they even know what hit them. They then use their combined strength to ensure that there is little left of their unfortunate prey. Although they are armed to the nines with powerful weaponry, Grimlock and Swoop prefer to take down their enemies with razor sharp teeth and talons.



Prelude: Even though Energon gave us a rather long-winded and unimaginative cartoon series, it balanced that with quite a few very nice toys. One of those toys is the Dinobot Swoop, who did not appear in the cartoon, but brings quite a bit to the toy shelves. Fans of the G1 series may remember Swoop and some may even have managed to get their hands on the original, rare G1 toy.

And speaking of rare, the Energon incarnation of the only flying Dinobot was never exactly widely available. Which means that I'm all the happier to offer an extensive review of him right here.

Robot Mode: Swoop in robot mode is almost Voyager-sized, at least in height, but is rather slender, which results from the unusual configuration of his arms. The figure's posability is very much satisfying. His legs are triple-jointed. Even the feet are vey posable here, enabling Swoop to achieve all kinds of dynamic poses.

Even more posable than the legs, though, are the figure's arms. They can move pretty much freely, only the lack of standard hands prevents Swoop from achieving the full range of human movement. Instead of hands Swoop has posable claws, which result from the feet of his alternate mode. A very well-done construction, which even enables the robot to make a hand stand.

Swoop's head is also very interesting. It can turn and even bend forward on a sort-of neck. Sadly the range of movement is limited by a sort of collar, which does serve a purpose, but presents a bit of a bother in robot mode.

The most sensational part, though, is the posability of Swoop's wings, which far outstrip that of every other winged Transformer ever. The wings are on ball joints and can be posed in just about every way. Even better, though, each wing has another joint which allows the wings to fold toegether. A very well-done design, which gives Swoop's robot mode an almost Gargoyle-like look.

In terms of detailing there is no ground for complaint, either. Swoop is very well sculpted and the colour scheme is diverse enough to make the figure look interesting. The blue-coloured body with the alternate mode's head sitting on the chest is also a nice homage to G1 Swoop.

Swoop doesn't really have any flaws. Only the fact that he comes without any weapons is not quite to my liking. A firearm of some kind would have been nice and would have made the robot mode perfect. Without it, we end up with a still very nice, expectional robot mode, which offers a lot of play value.

Alternate Mode: Like pretty much every Swoop ever, Energon Swoop transforms into a robotic flying dinosaur. I'm not sure if he's supposed to be a Pteranodon again, seeing as he's missing the characteristic horn on the back of his head. But whatever type of flying dinosaur this alternate mode is supposed to be, I don't think Swoop much cares for a very life-like look. Quite the opposite.

He's immediately recognisable as a machine, which opens up quite a few possibilities. I especially want to emphasize the "hiding place" of the robot mode legs, because those are folded together as a sort of rucksack on Swoop's back. But that is not a problem at all.

These components form a sort of rocket booster for the alternate mode, which makes a lot of sense actually, because how else could a flying dinosaur keep up with jets like Energon Starscream or Megatron, especially as he doesn't seem to have any ranged weapons? Swoop wouldn't stand much of a chance, I'd say. But with those rocket engines, Swoop now combines the unique manoeuvrability of a flying dinosaur with the speed of a rocket-powered jet, which should give him a much better chance in aerial combat.

In terms of posability there is no reason to complain about this dinosaur here. Swoop's legs are nicely posable and give him a solid stance when he's on the ground. He can even move his claws here, which I find very interesting personally. The wings, too, have full range of movement here, allowing Swoop to achieve all kinds of great poses. He can pull off dives, gliding, everything. And he can even move his head up and down, and finally he can open and close his mouth.

There is one tiny flaw, though: You can see Swoop's robot head in the neck of the flying dinosaur. Some small panel or something would have been nice here to keep the head fully out of sight. Still, a very nicely done alternate mode, which not only looks good, but offers a lot of play value, too, while having very little in the way of flaws.

Combiner Mode: Yes, indeed. Our friend Swoop here is a Combiner. Seeing as a new character emerges when Swoop combines with Grimlock, we'll talk about that elsewhere. That particular review can be reached by solving this little riddle here:

Which Transformer, who has the ability to transform into a dinosaur, actually has an alternate mode that doesn't really exist?

BW Dinobot
Energon Grimlock
BW Megatron
G1 Sludge
Animated Snarl
G1 Slag
G1 Swoop



Of course one could simply link over to the other review... but why keep it simple when complicated is much more fun?

Conclusion: In Energon Swoop you get a figure which is extraordinary in several ways. Not only in terms of posability and his great balance, no. His overall design is a far cry from the usual Transformer design.

There are a few tiny flaws, of course. The robot mode should have been hidden better in robot mode and a weapon would have been nice. Still, at the end of the day Swoop is a Transformer I can fully recommend. And as for the rating, Swoop receives a well-deserved...

Rating: B+

PS: I own this Transformers thanks to Ebayseller thetoyaddict1


 
Tags: - Animal: Reptile/Dinosaur - Autobot - Energon - Hasbro




Included Figures: User Rating: Accessories: Other Versions of the Mold:
3 of 5 Stars determined by 1 User Rating
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Published 17.03.2009
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