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Monday, 8 September 2014

Mastermind Creations R08D Azalea Stealth Assassin - Pictorial Review

Mastermind Creations Azalea (Not-Arcee) was first teased back in 2013 when PlanetSteelExpress released her render along with Parapax Zinnia and later displayed at Captured Prey Third Party at Botcon 2013.

Pic Credit : MMC/TFWiki

Azalea is the 4rd version of 3rd Party release homaging G1 Arcee in Cybertronian Car mode, the first 3 being Rabid Squirrels's A.R.C, Impossible Toys' Valkyrie and iGear's Delicate Warrior. Other iteration of Arcee includes Perfect Effect's RC.

Before releasing Azalea, Mastermind Creations releases a dark color version of Azalea, dubbed R08D Azalea Stealth Assassin as Singapore Toy, Games and Comic Convention (STGCC) 2014 Exclusive, distributed by The Falcon Hangar limited to only 500 pieces worldwide.

Thanks to my friend Nik Khairul Amir for helping me out.

Reviews of her variants can be found below
In Package


Still following the same formula of the Reformatted Series, Azalea comes in a black-themed box with design similar to the rest of the series.


The artwork potrays Azalea is a fierce way, similar to how Arcee was in IDW Comic during the hunt for Jhiaxus. I'm assuming this is only use for this release rather, not for the mass release Azalea (Normal Color)

Back View


This really surprises me. At first seeing the picture of the box online, I'd presumed that the size of the box would roughly be the same as Feral Cons boxes. It is in fact just a bit taller than Classics Optimus Prime.


There's a 2-page comic attached to the window of the box, similar to G1 Transformers TFC Book Edition boxes.


Tech Spec
Generally the same, Azalea comes with a tech spec, weapons and comic book/instruction manual (inside of the box)

A pair of swords and guns



I don't usually put spoiler here but the storyline is really interesting

[SPOILER ALERT]


The story revolves around Arcee getting her revenge on Jhiaxus for using her as a subject for his experiment. What's even more interesting is Mech Ideas Demolition Crue Apex and Geminus also make their appearance in it. (name and design following Mech Ideas release)

Surprise! Surprise!


Also in the comic book/instruction manual, is concept art gallery of Sparton, MMC version of Sparton. And he's gorgeous!


Alt Mode

Was also fairly surprised when I found out that Stealth Assassion is NOT a black repaint of Azalea but rather mix of dark colors. Which I think is even better.


Mastermind answered fans' wishes by designin Azalea with [hovering] Cybertronian car as her alt mode, rather than earth mode or Cybertronian car with wheels. The problem is that...without wheel, it's be flat on the ground.


Hence, MMC includes a stand for Azalea for her to be able to hover.


Voila~ Looks great. The main color for this Azalea is light purple and also grey with red highlights from front to back.


I really like the futuristic design of Azalea but wish that the cockpit would be painted in different color as it doesn't really stand out.


Also, from lower angle, the leg panels are a bit visible but this is really nitpicking. The more serious issue would be transforming Azalea is really tiring, I give you that. It's important to make sure each and every parts and panels are aligned and at the right angle.

Back View


All of Azalea's weapons can be stored in alt mode and really blend in well with the car.

Size Comparison


Azalea is roughly the same size as Deluxes circa 2006-2009.



Robot Mode


She's definately gorgeous! And the color really work well on her. Kudos to MMC for using this paint scheme rather than all black. Transformation wise, it's easier from alt mode to robot mode than the other way around.


Back View
Considering that the wings are compulsory design for Arcee and can't be excluded, Azalea's design is really clean and kibble free.

Side View


The head is in grey while the eyes are painted yellow, highlighting them.


The combination of grey/black, purple and red really work on her, especially the red lines.





MMC really put a lot of effort for Stealth Assassin, giving her a premium paint app all over the figure. It's kind of refreshing considering most "Exclusive" variants are just an excuse to milk the fans.


Like I said, Azalea is around the size of Deluxe Figures circa 2006-2009, before HasTak decides to shrink their releases.


Aside from the storage used in alt mode, the guns can also be pegged to the side of her legs.


However, since they're also to be used to store the swords, Azalea can only stores 1 pair of weapons and hold the other pair.

EDIT
"One addendum to that review: She can store both the guns and the swords. The guns on on her hips, the swords fold and store on the wing pieces on her back." - Peaugh, TFW2005



I couldn't get enough of her. The slick design and quality, the range of movement and articulations, all of that makes her worthwhile.


Azalea comes with a ball jointed head, ball jointed shoulders, double-jointed elbows, wrist swivels, ball joints on the thigh, double-jointed knees and ankle swivels/hinges.



Although, the best part is that she comes with a waist swivels and also ball joint above the torso, giving her a wider range of articulation.



In addition to her articulations, Azalea also has tight joints all over and a very stable figure.


Due to the double joint, Azalea sometimes look like she doesn't have knee caps (which I've seen people complaint before) but that can be fix easily just by adjusting the joints, same case with the elbows.


Another minor complaint is that wrist tend to rotae whenever the guard on her lower arms moves. There's no locking position for the guards and I found out that different poses for the hands may require the guards to be in different location,


I had a chance to own both iGear Delicate Warrior and Perfect Effect RC before and RC has better quality and playability while Delicate Warrior really homages G1 Arcee. Azalea, however, scores in both homage and design/playability, making her the best version of 3rd Party Arcee so far. Honestly, I highly recommend her (and the other fembots if this is the quality).




Worthy of the name Arcee
Worthy of the name Exclusive
Worthy of the name Assassin


8 comments:

  1. Nice! Can't wait to get mine. For me i prefer this colour over all others. The muted pink is perfect, I feel. I only wish they made an alternate head like the one on the box art.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks. Well, we wait and see, might be someone else releasing it

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  2. Wow, I heard that this is a Singapore event exclusive. Did you go to that event to get one? I tried asking my Singapore friend to get one for me but it is only 1 piece per attendee. You are lucky to be able to go and secure one.

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    Replies
    1. it was Singapore Toy, Games and Comic Convention, held on the 6th and 7th September. Didn't get a chance, this is a loan unit from my friend., haha

      Delete
    2. Still, top notch work. Kudos!

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    3. thanks you, really appreciate the support

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  3. Just got mine. Its not in the instructions but there is another alt mode which is the flight mode. Looks like a jet. Fold the legs down sideways, seperate the "nose pieces", combine them into one piece and slot them into the chest. Voila. Flight mode!

    ReplyDelete