Sunday, February 23, 2014

Transformers Generations Deluxe Mini-Con Assault Team Review

Mini-Con Assault team is one out four Transformers deluxe class toys to be released in the first quarter of 2014. Transformers Generations still continues the IDW comic series this year, and the Mini-Con Assault team has drawn some attention (good and bad).

Brief Background

Despite being labelled as part of the Mini Con faction, Mini-Con Assault team is noted to actually be from the Ammonite race, a group of transforming and combining robots that have been constantly in war with the Terradores clan for 16 million years. The Mini-Con Assault team is one of the many antagonists in the IDW Comics series.

Mini-Con Assault Team

Prior to combiner mode, all three characters can transform into their own alternate and robot modes. The transformation process comes in, at most, eight simple steps for any mode.

Heavy Tread

Heavy Tread's tank mode is the best, out of the three, because his limbs and face are nicely hidden. The tank has nicely detailed armor and plow, with colors that go hand in hand. The model number and Mini-Con insignia branded in yellow are also a nice touch. Unfortunately, the gun is stationary.

The worst part of Heavy Tread is his robot mode. He has a lot of bulk and the only articulated joints, are his ball-jointed arms and swiveling legs. However, his size and lack of movement does serve a better purpose, as he becomes Centuritron's legs in combiner mode. The gun from Heavy Tread's tank mode can either peg into his hand, like he's holding a gun, or plug the weapon on it's side. This second option leaves an impression that Heavy Tread's arm is fused with his gun, which is pretty neat.


Runway's jet mode is pretty neat considering the choice of color & design, though why would Hasbro paint some of the panels yellow also? Consumers, who prefer a clean alternate mode, will be disappointment to see Runway's arms and face underneath the plane.

In robot mode, Runway is the most aesthetically pleasing among the group, but there are still a few flaws attached. The biggest negative is Runway's scrawny arms, which conflicts with the other bulkier limbs. Other complications include a few loose joints (results may vary) and minor paint scuffs.

Those jet thrusters, when removed from the alternate mode, are able to peg in Runway's arm, which serves as a shield or perhaps a double barrel gun.

Given the size of the robot, Runway does deliver a reasonable amount of articulation. The robot is equipped with ball-jointed arms, ball-jointed legs, and swiveling knees.

When transforming to combiner mode, Runway becomes the chest of Centuritron.


Windshear has an acceptably detailed helicopter mode with a cool looking gatling gun mounted underneath the cockpit. Having the copter colored predominantly black with a model number painted yellow on the armor, also complements the sculpt.

Of course, this disguise also suffers from a few drawbacks. Just like Runway, Windshear's legs and face aren't well hidden. Also the helicopter's cockpit is poorly supported with a flimsy snap-on joint that apparently stays on only due to friction.

In robot mode, Windshear is the smallest compared to Runway and Heavy Tread. However, the overall look, complete with a gatling gun mounted on the forearm, is aesthetically pleasing. Due to Windshear's weight, the helicopter's tail must also serve as a supporting stand, which doesn't quite take the joy away from this figure.

In terms of articulation, Windshear  is equipped with ball-jointed arms and legs, and swiveling knees, much similar to Runway.

During combiner mode, Windshear completes the set as Centuritron's head.


The combined mode looks great overall. The three step process to combine them isn't difficult, though one critical step, that's sometimes forgotten and one that's tricky, is to tuck Runway's hands underneath the cockpit, in a triangle shape. However, the arms don't snap onto anything, so those limbs can get in the way, which is frustrating. In the end, this step makes Centuritron's chest look less hollow, with much appreciation.

The proportions are fine, and thankfully, there aren't that many kibble on this mode. The only eyesores worth noting are Heavy Tread's arms tucked behind Centuritron's legs, which restricts knee articulation, Windshear's folded legs that form a backpack, Heavy Tread's visible face from behind, and Windshear's helicopter blades behind Centuritron's head. Of course, kibble is expected for all combiner modes, so this figure should be given some leeway.

Despite the great presentation, Centuritron, based on the way he was engineered, seems to have some flimsy shoulders, which may be subject to snapping an arm off after a slightest bit of rough housing. Also, the biceps are really scrawny, and because of the loose arms, Centuritron can't quite hold his gun up well at certain angles.

Centuritron has only eight points of articulation:  There are ball-jointed shoulders, swiveling elbows, ball-jointed legs, swiveling knee joints, and hinged feet (due to transformation). Not having a swiveling waist or neck articulation would've been nice, but any combined robot mode does come with these sets of limitations. Despite these limits, Centuritron still has room for some decent poseability.

As a bonus, all three weapons from Heavy Tread, Runway, and Windshear can combine to form a giant gun for Centuritron in three different ways. No matter how they're assembled, the result will always be a sniper rifle/gatling gun combo that will turn other robots into scrap metal.

Size Comparison


All things considered, as cool as Mini-con Assault Team is, the kibble, hollowness, limited articulation, and flimsy joints just may be a deal breaker for some people. Of course, these are the risks that comes from a combiner toy this small. However, Centuritron's proportions, details, paint job, and fun while transforming these robots are worth praising, for something so affordable. Essentially, Mini-con Assault Team makes a great shelf display or child's play thing, otherwise don't expect dynamic poses or flawless craftsmanship from this toy.

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