Over the years I haven’t gotten many Masterpiece figures. Everytime one is announced I get really excited to own it, but when the time comes I never have the money or would rather spend it on something else. Sideswipe was an exception. As soon as preorders hit I placed my order, and at 4300Yen I would have been foolish not to. But still, was it worth it? Read on for the review.
Sculptwise, Sideswipe is perfection. The Lamborghini body is very accurate to the original design with barely any visible panel lines in alt mode. In robot mode he is a perfect representation of Sideswipe. The harsh angles of the chest along with the blocky forearms and shins do a really nice job of keeping him in proportion. I’m amazing at how little kibble there is in robot mode. The spoiler and the always inevitable roof/windshield being the only glaring bits. The paint is where I really have my only issues. A lot of the figure seems to be molded in black plastic with red painted overtop. This results in a lot of mismatched red colors in alt-mode, and just about every instance of the figure where black and red touch seems to be an issue with the crispness of the paint. This is mostly a problem in alt-mode but there are two spots on the shins that stick out and bug me. I usually don’t care about paint errors unless glaring, and these are glaring enough to at least try and fix.
Transformation and Accessories
The Transformation is flat out fun. I must be a leg man because any transformer who does interesting things with the legs I will give high marks for. Panels fold from just about everywhere in alt-mode to form the shins and does so without making the end result look too hollow. Clever use of space keeps his large feet hidden to where I didn’t even notice they were in the front seat of the car at first glance.
Sideswipe comes with four accessories, two black piledrivers to replace the hands, his shoulder mounted missile launcher and hand held flaregun. I really like the launcher. It has a nice chunk to it and plugs very firmly into his shoulder, complete with a joint so you can angle it up or leave it facing forward. The piledrivers clip on snug enough and form a seamless look on the front of the forearms, and the gun holds as firmly in his hand as MP Primes with a nice coat of silver paint. Both guns can store on the roof in alt mode similar to the fold-away mechtech ports in the DOTM line. But they look silly mounted up there, and the piledrivers can’t store away anyhow. So if you plan to display it in alt-mode, just bag all four of them up and put ‘em away.
I know I say this a lot, but Sideswipe is as articulated as you’d expect, with nothing amazing and nothing detrimental. Only real personal issues I have are that his head isn’t as expressive as I’d like. And the crotch plate does a pretty good job of being in the way of his legs if you were planning on putting him in any extreme stances. He does have a waist swivel, and nice rocker ankle joints, two joints that can make a good figure great if present! I will say though that this toy while not hard to pose, is very hard to pose photogenically, at least with my minimal expertise at the helm.
With the whole debate of will-he/wont-he come out in the US if you can find him and want him, I suggest importing him. With the Lamborghini License issues he may or may not ever see a stateside release. He’s an amazing transformer and the best representation of Sideswipe to date, he makes the Universe toy look like a cheap knock-off of a toy that’s not even suppose to be Sideswipe.