Unicron.com: Transformers Collector Site

Lukis Bros Transformers Collector Site

Events

Botcon 2012

Welcome to Unicron.com's coverage of Botcon 2012.  As usual, the convention consisted of Transformers customizing classes, convention exclusive figures, exhibit floor overflowing with Transformers and of course dozens of lines a half a mile long each! (Actually, they've been getting better and better at managing crowd control.  And with the number of people growing more and more every year, the organizers did a very fine job...)  

Transformers Collector Club Panel:
After the usual discussion of what's happened lately with Botcon and Fan Club, etc., organizers announce they will starting a “Figure Subscription Service.”   Although the details/logistics haven't been fully worked out, the estimates are that it will be an annual service (pay 1/year) and they will ship 1 figure every 2 months.  They are only going to produce an equal number that are ordered. (The implication being, keep an eye on those after-market values.  They could go sky high for those that  don't enroll in time.  Pictures were shown of the figures to be released (seen within the gallery below.)

2012 - Botcon (general)


2012 - TFCC

 

The first 6 figures have bee planned, at they showed photographs photo-shopped images of the recolors...  Some are recolors, others retools... 

    • G1 Breakdown, recolored version of Generations Sideswipe.
    • Jackpot:  recolor of Animated Jazz.  Designs by Derrick Wyatt.
    • RID Scourge: recolored version of Generatons G2 Optimus Prime
    • SLIPSTREAM!!!  Retool of deluxe 1st edition Starscream.  New molded head
    • Circuit: a recolor of ROTF Lockdown, (was a European Action Master…)
    • Ultra Mammoth: a recolor of Beast Wars Neo, Big Convoy…
    • Depth Charge:  Cybertron mode --fabulous looking recolor of HFTD Terradive.

Hasbro Brand Panel:
Unlike previous years, Hasbro seems to be cutting back more and more with what they reveal at their brand panel.  Further there was only one Hasbro presentation, versus the 2-3 they've had in previous years.  There was actually not a ton of new information that we hadn't heard before (like at ToyFair) presented.  A summary is outlined below. 

  • Transformers the Ride: May 24th 2012 in Univ. Studios Hollywood – Showed Evac characer art, and new deluxe Evac. Created in conjunction with Michael Bay / studios. Various exclusives for Universal Studios.
  • Prime DVD/blue ray out now...
  • RescueBots: nothing new discussed here.  Just that it exists...
  • KRE-O: nothing new announced since ToyFair...
  • (TFP) Robots in Disguise Deluxe Wave: photos shown of Arachnid, Dead End, and Nighty-night (Shadow Strike) Bumblebee --no other reveals.  Edit --aparently they showed photos of Deluxe Kup and Rumble.
    --There was not mention and no showings of forthcoming TFP Voyager figures such as Ratchet or Breakdown...
  • Generations:  Voyager Thundertron from the new pirate faction, depicted in Transformers Exiles (soft cover novel)…  He is the captian of this faction…  looks like a blue white wolf.  He looks a little like Snarl from the Unicron Trilogy series. His photo was shown next to the siloette image of 2 other Voyager toys --still unknown.
  • Cyberverse  another Commander Class figure in wave 3 w/ Ironhide, they showed Ultra Magnus...
  • 2013 Sneak Peak: Legion Arachnid, grey models w/ colors and paint scheme…
  • Bot Shots launhers Ironhide w/ saws… Wave 2 Skyquake, jetfire powerglide. Another 3pk.. Decepticons w/ Shockwave...
  • 2012 TRU Exclusive.  Masterpiece Optimus Prime, looks great, goal was to get him as close as humanly possible to G1 (TFTM specifically)  INCLUDES (G1-style transforming) trailer, Roller and human Spike…  Crowd liked this!
  • Then Generations 2013 Sneak Peak:  Fall of Cybertron Kickback modeled after comics universe Insecticons which infested Cybertron, looks GREAT!  -wild crowd response to this one.  During their presentation he was presented as a Generations Deluxe figure, but in the display case he seemed considerably bigger, at least Voyager size.  We'll see.  They also showed images  Fall of Cybertron: Starscream (in color, looked great), Ultra Magnus (a FoC Optimus w/ retooled head, color scheme). Fireflight (a retool FoC Shockwave w/ sword/sci.)
  • New scale for Generations: 
    • VOYAGER SOUNDWAVE!  Includes  Data disks! Laserbeak, Ravage, Rumble/Frenzy (blue) can store 3 data disks.  There will be a Soundblaster recolor.  
    • Still no mention of Fall of Cybertron Dinobots officially, though the crowd shouted it out.  Then began chants for "ALL FIVE! ... ALL FIVE! ... ALL FIVE! ... ALL FIVE!  
  • Generations Legends:  More data disks for Soundwave: Frenzy, Rumble, Ratbat and Ravage...  Crowd goes crazy!
  • SDCC Exclusive Decepticon Bruticus: color schemes based much more on G1 and Fall of Cybertron game.  Then a discussion of how the (stunningly awesome) packaging was developed. 
  • Then another the next SDCC exclusive…  A lot more paint-aps, super decoed’ very highly detailed Zombie Cliffjumper.  Remolded head.  The packaging is the zombie head Cliffjumper.  Seriously impressive!

Q&A:

- Correct color Bruticus to be sold at mass retail anywhere? No. But bright colors in store
- iTunes Season 2? No comment w/o Hasbro Studios
-Transformation alone is not always a way to attract new toy buyers. Needed an expanded play value.
- No unreleased movie three toys (back burner) --Movie Trilogy line is dead (for now)
- Original 13 toys originally 1 per year. A.A. originally thought the books would be out more quickly. Still in the plans.
- Universal Studio exclusives, currently only at Uni.Stud. with the rides (for now)
- Generations line eventually a place for characters from Novel, IDW Comics…
- Reveal the Shield Rumble & Frenzy in a toy line soon? “A resounding I don’t know.”
- FOC Dinobot toys? “We’re not ready to say anything at this point. But there is no doubt that we know that this character is going to be extremely cool in the game and everybody’s going to want one.” All 5? – “… talk to him.”  More "ALL FIVE" chants from crowd.
- Generations Springer and Arcee? Arcee – no, Arcee focing on TFP.  Springer – “On the short list”
- Ironhide toy seen in Cyberverse.  Will he be in the Prime TV show? Not in the show, but maybe other media… just wait and see.
- No Current plans for unreleased TFA figures
- Why did US get short changed for TFP first edition? Several First Edition figures at the top of their list to try to get released in one way or another.
-If Hasbro Toy Shop is still a viable market for toy releases, why can’t anything that goes to market, why can’t they also be sold on HTS.com? Because we want to honor retailer arrangements, and not undercut them by offering everything online.

Hasbro - High Moon Studios/Activision Panel
In my opinion, one of the more interesting panels at this year's convention was the Activision/Fall of Cybertron presentation. In addition to video game development and marketers from Activision, Aaron Archer, Hasbro IP was on hand to talk about his vision for the new "aligned continuity" and how stories from the game interconnect with continuity of Transformers: Prime, the novels (Exodus and Exiles).  In addition, we were impressed with the level of thought and energy that has gone into imagining the history and environments of Cybertron.  See for yourself in the videos below.

Transformers Hall of Fame: Dinner/Awards Dinner
For many of us, a huge highlight of the convention was the Transformers Hall of Fame dinner ceremony.  Shown below you'll see us, the Lukis brothers, along with a few of the site administrators Sabrblade (Miles -center) and TriPredRavage (Cliff middle, right) joining in the festivities.  Personally, I was a little shocked when they announced the winner of the Fan's Choice award was Wheeljack!  What did you think of that?  --It's the first time a G1 character has won the contest.  That he actually beat out Beast Wars Megatron, Sky-byte, and Arcee (of all Generations...!)  Wow.  We were all moved when a daughter of the late Chris Latta (G1 Starscream) gave her acceptance speech, on behalf of her father.  It was a great moment.  

Unicron.com at Transformers Hall of Fame Event 2012

Botcon 2012 - Photo Feed

Well, we made it to Botcon 2012 and cranked away a couple hundred pictures for you all on the Showroom floor of all the official displays. We'll keep adding to this gallery as new transformers are added to the showcases. We're looking forward to seeing what fills in empty display case spots throughout the weekend.

ToyFair 2012 - Full Report


Hasbro's Fan-Media Day Presentation Is About to Begin...

Presentation begins with Stephen Davis, President, Hasbro Studios

•  Hasbro Studios produced shows are now being seen on over 140 networks across the globe.
•  Not just a “toy-show” we are wanting to to create a world and relm that sustain long-term interest with fans.
•  >330 new half hour shows coming in 2012. Well over 600 hours already produced That’s more than any other studio in the world producing programming for kids.
•  6 new shows including Transformers Rescue Bots; My Little Pony: transcending age demographics! 20-30-something watching it too! Followed by clips from upcoming seasons of Duel Masters Kaijudo & Duel Masters.
•  Rescue Bots: 4 young Autobots living among people learning together, footage shown, intro of Jeff Kline (in the audience) producer of both Rescue Bots and Transformers Prime series, stands to applause…
•  Transformers Prime: Needs little introduction. New second season starting 2/18. Then treated to new footage from Season 2…Knockout and breakdown… “We’ll be sure to tell the big O (referring to Orion/Optimus) you said hello!” Arcee follows them into ground bridge back to Deception's base… Another eye-popping fight scene, Arcee in action.

TRANSFORMERS Presentation first...

Presenters: Jerry Jivoin Marketing director. Joshua Lamb, Sr. Design director’.
2012 will be the biggest yet!

Transformers The Ride: Opens universal studios Hollywood in May.
•  Gift shop willl include 6 new Transformers toys: Evac, deluxe scale and legion. Each on its own packaging
•  Universal studios to include deluxe OP and BB, Voyager OP and Megatron

Virtual World MMO will launch in 2012: showed trailer. War is coming, chose your side, shape your destiny.  
•  Fantastic graphics intro. Joint the battle online… transformersuniverse rich levels of characters. 
•  A great toy opportunity down the road… hint, hint...

Rescue Bots: Heatwave, Chase, Blades, Boulder. Great introduction to Transformers for kids.
•  Shows also start Feb 18. Mobile HQ a new item

2012 - Rescue Bots

Kre-O: great new theme. A great new storyline, energon cubes in each set
•  New devastator. 29 new Kreons,
•  16 Transformers Robots in the line

2012 - KRE-O

Movie Trilogy Set:  Basically discontinued --crowd in stunned silence...
•  Bumblebee, Wheeljack, Ratchet Soundwave these will be available in Asia only!
•  Deluxe Optimus Prime:  the line's lone non-casualty. WILL be available in U.S.

Transformers Prime: March 6, DVD on Blu Ray
•  Enhanced e-book Apps
•  Toys: Launch March 1
•  Regarding "First Edition" Wave 2 Deluxe/Voyagers “This one is on us. We will get thes out later in 2012 in some form or another."

•  Deluxe: a mech tech-like incorporated wave 2 Ratchet and Arcee, Wave 3 Knockout, Hotshot, Vehicon
•  Voyager: Wave 1 Optimus Prime, Megatron.  "Just wait till you transform wave 2 voyager Starscream and Bulkhead… 

•  Weaponizer:  (a new price point at $29.99 suggested retail)  “similar to a leader scale.  Weaponizing feature, functions in both modes. Very exciting Cannons come out and spin both modes. 
•  Prime Entertainment pack Bumblebee vs. starscream with MECH human figures will be available in Asia only
•  Prime Remote controlled wave 1: Bumblebee and Knockout. Electronic transformination and electronic battling. 

•  Role Play battle masks w/ TF:Prime OP and Bumblebee
•  2/18 TFP Season 2 premiere, 3/1 Prime toys (finally) hit retail

Cyberverse:  
•  Wave 1: vehicon, Ratchet, Cliffjumper • Wave 2 Breakown Soundwave, … ….
•  Commander serries Ironhide commander: a red pickup truck, meched out.
•  Cyberverse Vehicles Wave 1: Wheeljack w/ vehicle, and lots of glowing energon. also includes Vehicon driller. 
•  New price point for cyberverse: Legion, Commander and next Maximus scale. Optimus Robot mode base w/a “sort of “ vehicle mode… Not recognizable as truck. Looks like... a giant base(?) w/ wheels.  Yikes the least impressive TF item shown, in editor's humble opinion.

Bot Shots:  led with TV commercial, which make these little toys pretty likable... 
•  “Small bots, big attitude…” Coupled w/ online . By May 1 player vs. player.
•  The Clear figures have special power, will be hard to find.
•  Wave 2… Botshot launchers w/ OP and Meg. 3-pack Chase Battle for the matrix battle set.
•  online game launches 3/1.

2012 - Bot Shots

GENERATIONS:  Probably the highlight of the presentation, since nothing new was seen during TF:Prime portion 
•  Revamp!  FoC game coming in the fall.  Great new stories coming...  
•  Talked about comics growing, story getting better, electronic distribution… 
•  Matt Tieger, game director to talk about the game development. To talk about some additional material. 
o  Iacon, backgrounds o Iacon wastelands, Sea of Rust, really quite spectacular 
o  Yes there are insecticons 
o  The guy I REALLY wanted to talk about…. Combiner was the one we wanted.. BRUTICUS! Easy choice for us
   o  Because of the unique personalites... Vortex has a big part of the story.
   o  On the other side of the challenge spectrum Blastoff but they managed to come up w/ a fantastic design that even included his chocolate brown color scheme!
o  Then showed us game play, what it’s like to play as BRUTICUS! 
o  Individual Giant Transformers wrecking havoc on the world of Cybertron. Devastatingly huge compared to others… 
o  As anticipated, game play/graphics look very impressive:  In Bruticus form: Vortex blades as shield weapon. Blastoff engines forearm as blaster. Laying waste to armies of Autobots. Wow!  Glowing w/ Dark energon, individual components each have their  own abilities.
o  Then another segment intro. Game play as Megatron, Cliffjumper, Jazz, Grimlock chowing down on Insecticons…. WOW. Crowd goes wild. 
o  Then they start to talk toys!  Optimus Prime, Jazz, and Shockwave.  All new molds, very sharp, very detailed… 
o  Fall of Cybertron coming in the fall of 2012, Blastoff, Vortex, Brawl, Swindle, Onslaught, which of course UNITE! 
o  Big news here, Generations line is EXPANDING.  20? nope, 30? nope  In 2014 Generations line will expand to OVER 40 figures.

2012 - Generations - Deluxe

GIJoe Presentation: Retaliation, a way to re-connect in a different and better way to bring this stories to better appeal to fans. • On shelf late may, early June. Overall >50 3 ¾” figures • Roadblock, Snake Eyes, Cobra Commander. • GIJoe Trooper, Cobra Trooper (w/ cloth parachute) Red Ninja “Army Builders • Wave 2. Battle-Kata Roadblock, Firefly, Flint Movie accurate • More troop builders w/ Ninjas! Alley Viper, Cyber Ninja, Dragon Ninja. Crimson Guard, Night Viper.

Star Wars presentation: Lots coming, light up light sabers on 3 ¾“ figures… and more…

Marvel Presentation: Intersting twist for Transformers fans, Death’s Head (recall UK Simon Furmon did Transformers-Death’s Head crossover)
•  Someone yelled “Circuit Breaker” … Presenter laughed and said, “I knew you were going to say that!”

2012 - ToyFair (general)