R-01G GRANDUS HEXATRON
Series: Mastermind Creations Reformatted
Grandus Hexatron is not a figure released by Hasbro nor by Takara-Tomy and thus not officially a Transformer. He hails from third party company Mastermind Creations and is, of course, intended to be G1 Greatshot
, but for legal reasons he canít be called by that name.
Grandus Hexatron is a pretty big robot, roughly Ultra-sized, and looks fabulous to me. The red, white and blue paintjob clearly marks him as one of the good guys and he is pretty much a 100 percent faithful rendition of the character from the Japanese Victory series and the original G1 toy. Of course he is far better articulated than the G1 toy and more detailed, too, but itís clearly meant to be the same guy. Horned head, check. Golden symbol on black chest plate, check. Red double-barreled weapons as shoulder pieces, check. No doubt this here is Greatshot, nicely done.
Homage aside Grandus is a well-designed, cool-looking robot. The hands appear a tiny bit too small for my taste, but otherwise everything fits together very well. The legs are partially die cast metal, giving him a very solid stance. Weapon-wise he comes with two chromed guns and two really big, ornate swords. He also has movable peg holes on his hip where he can holster either the guns or the swords (or one of each) in order to keep his hands free. Finally his horned helmet can be removed, leaving him with a very, very small head.
Bottom line for the robot mode: Fabulous. I really love this guy. Bigger hands might have been good, but thatís my only complaint. Grandus Hexatron truly is a bad-ass robot.
As a sixchanger Grandus has five additional modes on top of his robot mode. Letís go through them in the same order as they are shown in the pictures. First off is the Rhino. Okay the instructions actually call it a winged wolf, but I guess someone forgot to change that from the instruction sheets of Terminus Hexatron (see remarks). Anyway, itís basically the robot mode going down on all fours and switching out the robot mode head for a beasty one. It doesnít look bad, but itís no more than a robot on all fours.
Next up is a so-called APC, an Armored Personnel Carrier. This transformation is a bit more involved than the rhino and Grandus actually does end up looking like some sort of armored vehicle. Itís basically a square on wheels with the guns plugged in on top, but I guess an APC isnít really that much different. Only downside is that the mode doesnít really know what to do with the wings.
Fourth mode, the tank. Grandusí arms become tank treads, his legs swing up to form a sort of turret and the guns plug in as the tankís cannons. While it certainly doesnít look like any kind of actually existing tank, it is recognizable for what it is supposed to be. My second-favorite of Grandusí alternate modes.
Fifth and my personal favorite mode: the star fighter. To me this is the smoothest of Grandusí modes, also the one with the least left-over kibble. It actually looks aerodynamic (well, somewhat) and could well be at home in a science fiction movie. The landing gear isnít that great, just two very tiny little skids flipping out from the wings and a bit of kibble pretending to be a skid for the front, but it works. So yeah, if I ever end up transforming Grandus again, it will probably be into jet mode.
And finally there is the gun mode, which is basically the jet mode with the wings folded down to form a grip. There are only very, very, very few Transformers who can pull off a good gun mode and no, Grandus Hexatron is not one of them. So... yeah, letís just move on from here.
To sum up Grandusí alternate modes: itís a pretty impressive piece of engineering that he can assume so many shapes, but none of them are really all that impressive by themselves except possibly be the jet mode. I donít think Iíll transform him out of robot mode that often.
Greatshot appeared in several episodes of Victory. A former mercenary who joined the Cybertrons/Autobots, he fought his former comrades Guyhawk, Blue Bacchus and Black Shadow alongside Star Saber and was also present for the final battle against Deathsaurus' huge space fortress. He was portrayed as the stereotypical ninja-loner for the most part. Some people consider him an upgraded version of Sixshot, who switched sides to join the Cybertrons in the Headmasters series, but there is no evidence to support that other than the two of them sharing a mold and the same voice actor in Japan.
Much like G1 Greatshot was a remold of G1 Sixshot
, Mastermind Creations remolded their third party version of the character, Terminus Hexatron
. The result looks great. I love the robot mode and the engineering involved is impressive. That said, at least four of his five alternate modes are not really all that great. The Grandus version of this figure was available made-to-order only and I only got it when Kapow Toys had it on clearance, I probably wouldnít have gone for it at full price. So Bottom line: a very nice figure, especially for fans of the Japanese G1 Transformers, but I wouldnít recommend it for the full, original price. If you can find him on clearance, though, heís definitely worth getting.