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TFX-02 G3 TRAILER

Series: Fans Project
Allegiance: Autobot
Categories: Upgrade Set
Year: 2009



Prelude: Just to warn you: This will probably not be an objective review. I'm a rabid G1 fanatic who loves the Classics/Universe figures and this new version of Optimus Prime's classic trailer is very much wish-fulfillment for me. So the review will be tainted by lots and lots of G1 nostalgia. You have been warned. Oh, and just to get the legal part out of the way: This thing here is not an official Hasbro / Takara-Tomy product and not in any way connected to the Transformers franchise except for its creators being fans. And to avoid any confusion, several of the stickers present in the pictures above, especially those featuring the Autobot symbol and other stuff that might just be copyrighted, were not sold with the trailer, but rather hail from reprolables.com.

Trailer Mode: What we have here is a near-perfect copy of the trailer the original Optimus Prime towed in vehicle mode. It's bigger, of course, seeing as Classics Optimus Prime is also a good deal bigger than his G1 counterpart. It's a lighter, almost silver, not the darker grey of its predecessor, but apart from that it looks pretty much the same. One small disadvantage here: There are no gaps in the trailer where the weapons module can stick out when the trailer's closed. So in terms of moving firepower the G1 trailer has the edge.

The back of the trailer features two doors, which open to unveil a ramp that can extend and flip down. The interior of the trailer is quite roomy and can hold two Deluxe-sized cars in addition to Prime's scout vehicle Roller. Here the G3 Trailer has a definite edge, as the G1 trailer couldn't hold more than a single short car when Roller was inside. The G3 Trailer also features a so-called stealth-mode. Basically panels flip down on the sides and the front/back of the trailer, turning the entire surface area into a mirror. I guess this is to simulate a kind of hologram, turning the trailer invisible. Might explain where Prime's trailer went when he transformed into robot mode (subspace is so two decades ago!)

As a final gimmick the trailer can unfold a kind of towing platform from beneath it, which is compatible with the City Commander in trailer mode. So Classics Prime (or Classics Ultra Magnus for that matter) can now tow both the G3 Trailer and the City Commander trailer. Only works if you have the latter, of course, or one of its variants.

All in all the G3 Trailer works very well as a trailer for Classic Prime's vehicle mode. But it has a few more things to offer.

Station Mode: Just like back in G1 days the trailer can open up into a kind of hybrid battle and repair station. The basic layout of the station is the same as it ways in G1. The station's repair & artillery module sits on the far end (actually the front end of the trailer), while the main ramp remains unchanged and the side walls of the trailer now become additional floor space where the various weapons from the weapon set can be stored (see below). Additional stickers give the interior added detailing, such as computer screens and such.

The module at the trailer's end fulfills two different functions. It can serve as a repair drone by unfolding two long repair arms from its sides (which is one arm more than the G1 module had). The module can then work on cars (or Roller) as they rest on the central ramp. Additionally the entire station can be set on end to become a vertical repair station. Now figures such as Classics Prime can stand inside it and have the module work on them. The module's second function is artillery. Two big cannons can unfold from it and when the repair arms are folded in there are handles on its back where a Voyager-sized figure (Classics Prime again) can serve as gunner. A blast shield flips up from the module's base to serve as protection for the gunner.

Compared to other trailer-turned-battle-stations we've seen in the long history of the Transformers, this station here might actually look a bit plain. But it is a very good adaption of the classic G1 Optimus Prime battle station, improving on certain elements without losing the resemblance to the original. So all in all a very good station mode. I like it.

Add-Ons: The G3 Trailer comes with several additional pieces. One is, of course, Roller, Optimus' classic motorized scout. In G1 Roller was little more than a six-wheeled frame with two seats and a gas pump on the back. The G3 Roller is still six-wheeled, but a more streamlined, closed vehicle now. It's blue with red highlights and looks pretty nifty. There is a hole in the back for plugging in a weapon, such as Classic Prime's extra gun, giving Roller firepower for combat support roles. Roller can also be extended, opening up a space where Energon Cubes (another add-on available, but not in my possession) can be stored. All in all Roller is a very nice-looking little vehicle.

The trailer also comes with a set of weapons meant for several Classics/Universe figures. All five weapons can be mounted on the inside of the trailer (the walls when it's closed, the floor when open) and fit pretty well without getting in the way of any vehicle wanting to drive out of it. As to the weapons themselves: Grimlock gets a sword somewhat reminiscent of the one he carried in his G1 days. It's quite a bit bigger and silver chrome instead of red, but it looks pretty good in his hand and finally gives this Dinobot back his favorite melee weapon.

Sideswipe receives the shoulder cannon/missile he's been missing. Okay, one could mount Sideswipe's handgun on his shoulder as well, but that looked rather pitiful. This new cannon plugs into his shoulder (left or right, whatever you want) and complements his look quite nicely. Mirage also gets his classic shoulder missile back. I'm not a hundred percent satisfied here, as the missile clicks into the inside of one of the wheels (again, left or right, your choice), which are a good deal above his head and not exactly shoulder height. Okay, his shoulder design wouldn't make it easy to mount a missile there, but still... looking good, but not completely satisfied.

Hound gets a chromed silver machine gun for his vehicle mode. He can also carry it as a handgun in robot mode and somewhat hazardly mount it on his shoulder there, too, but it looks best in vehicle mode and fits a lot better than his green/grey missile-thing the figure originally came with. Thumbs up here as well. Finally there is Bumblebee, so far the only Classics figure without a weapon of some kind. Well, no more. Bumblebee now gets a small handgun of his own. Not much, but a lot better than nothing. Besides, Bumblebee was never that well-armed to begin with, but it's nice that he has some firepower now instead of nothing at all.

Packaging: I don't normally write much (if anything) about the packaging a toy comes in. I'm the kind of guy who unpacks even a 25-year-old MISB vintage G1 toy. But in this case I want to add a little something about the box the G3 Trailer comes in. The box is such that you can put Classics Prime in truck mode in there, too (see the second picture). And you can even display him through the box' plastic window, simply by taking out the pice of cardboard on the left side of it. Voila, instant Classics Prime with trailer in package. It's a very nice little detail and might just convince me to display this little beauty here in-box instead of unpacked, something I don't normally do, either.

Remarks: I didn't originally plan to get a trailer for my Classics Prime. Then BigBadToyStore had one on sale (not this one) and I briefly considered, then dismissed it. But it got me looking into other trailers and I found this beauty here. Wasn't on sale, of course, but I got it anyway. The G3 Trailer is probably not for everyone. It doesn't turn into battle armor for the robot, it doesn't feature an overwhelming number of gimmicks. It's simply a straight-forward reinterpretation of the classic G1 Optimus Prime trailer with some added features. So if you're not a G1-fanatic like me, I don't know whether you'll like it. But if you are, well, then you'll probably agree with me and fully recommend this beauty here.

Rating: A


 
Tags: - Autobot - Fans Project - Third Party - Truck




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Published 17.11.2009
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