1/10 Mospeada Armor Cycle VR-052F (Stick Type)
Review by Atom
Genesis Climber Mospeada is classic anime from the ’80s. While not hugely popular like Macross it does have quite the cult following. Here in the states, it was adapted into the American series Robotech as the third generation of the story.
The Mospeada is an armored cycle that transforms into powered armor for the rider, once transformed the Armored Rider is protected, able to wield heavier firepower and able to fly. The Mospeada is my personal favorite mecha design of all time, even relegating the venerable Valkyrie from Macross to the back seat in my world. So needless to say I have been watching this Beagle release develop on-line for quite some time but with a price tag running between $250 - $300 after importing to the states, it is VERY expensive. It’s so expensive only the die-hard fan of the design or series would even consider saving their pennies for it.
The clear window on the front with the words “Mospeada Armor Cycle VR-052F” are printed in white on the lower half. Original artwork decorates the back and top of the box giving it a nice old school feel. Photos of the toy are on the sides. I think original artwork gives toy packaging a classy feel and look. The box measures 12 inches tall by 14 1/2 inches long by 7 inches deep.
Included in the box is:
3 HBT Power Cells (with carry case)
Beam Cannon and Mounting Bracket
Mospeada Armor Cycle
The package overflows with accessory goodness, I just wish they included a non-armored Stick in his Mars Base uniform (hmmm, maybe they could do an appendix series like Saint Cloth Myth?)
Closed hands, open hands and trigger fingers; Beagle has you covered. Sadly the fine folks who packaged mine up gave me two open right hands and no left hand. For $250 - $350 that should not be a remote possibility.
So while Beagle distributes the Mospeada in the Japanese market, Toynami will be releasing this in the states under the Robotech brand in their Masterpiece Collection. The only difference besides the box it comes in is the un-helmeted head. Beagle comes with the version pictured in this review which is more subtle and elegant, similar to the original line art. Toynami will be releasing their own head sculpt.
After seeing pictures of the finished sculpt I decided I liked the Japanese version more. Your mileage may vary however as the Toynami release will be $200 before shipping, so the lower cost may appeal more than head sculpts.
The supplied display base is incredibly well designed. Not only does it give a solid and stable means to display the Mospeada in flight and standing but they also include a storage locker to store all your extra parts and pieces while displaying the larger weapons on a “gun rack” on top of the storage locker.
The stand arm is movable making room to “lock” the Cycle mode to the base as well with a smaller clip designed for the purpose. This allows you to display the bike in a nice lean without fear of it falling off the shelf. Beagle really thought this piece through from big details to little ones.
Unfortunately Stick won’t stand on his own with the Ride Armor on, the design and high-quality materials just add too much weight to the back, however you can just use the extending arm that attaches to the Ride Armor for the base by itself giving you a much smaller and stable support for more dynamic, ground pounding action displays. I’m not sure this was the intended design but it works well.
Honestly, I tend to use the base itself in my displays because being able to display it in mid flight just flat out rocks!
The figure itself is nice! Some have made the mistake of comparing to a “doll” or Real Action Hero, it is not. It’s more akin to a Saint Cloth Myth with tighter, “clicky” joints - so it’s all action figure here.
Stick is highly articulated, holds poses beautifully and features a cloth suit that covers the exposed limbs creating a very rich look with the mixed media, something I wish more toy makers would do. The material for the cloth suit feels like it could “dry out” and crack as it ages over time. Only time will tell. Some have reported tearing in the crotch, my sample seems to have more than enough give to prevent any tearing, but it is something to keep in mind when handling your Stick (that sounded so wrong) so make sure not to over extend the range of motion when handling it and tearing shouldn’t be an issue for you.
The only complaint I have about the figure is the gaping screw hole on the side of his neck! Beagle this in inexcusable, there is no good reason you couldn't have put a plastic plug in to hide that or at the very least put the hole on the back of the neck. Correct this for future releases please.
In Cycle Mode this thing is solid and features real rubber tires that roll! That’s right, not only will the rider stay on the bike you can actually roll it around. Vroom! Vroom! Die-Cast metal content is relegated to the arms that support the wheels, the sub frame of the lower chassis, and the kickstand. the rest of the bike is ABS, PVC and POM.
Printed detail is a bit sparing though with only the MB on the feet, the 21 and MB on the sides of the rear of the cycle. They include a nice sticker sheet to add more detail to the cycle; however a lot of the stickers that go on curved surfaces are already beginning to curl off. It would be nice if they could up the "ante" on the tampo, printed detail on future releases.
The cycle actually has foot pegs for the riders’ feet, something that has been left off of most releases of this design over the years. Again Beagle paying attention to the small stuff…
So how's the transformation? Complex, but not daunting.
If you understand the Mospeada design everything is fairly intuitive and the manuals photos are clear and easy to understand. Seriously, this is one of the better transformation guides I have seen over the years. Can’t read Japanese? That won’t be an issue.
While the manual describes the transformation in 85 steps it’s more like 45ish (the manual shows you a photo after each step of what the Mospeada should look like after every part move and each photo is numbered as a step.) I know that sounds like a lot but once you know what you’re doing it’s really not that complex.
If you’re looking for a guide to transformation be sure to check out the video at the end of this review.
Sweet mother of God, its better looking than the cartoon! Beagle really struck a fantastic balance between the Mospeada’s Cycle and Armor modes and Armor mode doesn’t disappoint. The rider locks into the Armor snugly and everything locks and sits where it should. Once assembled it’s a solid toy and the proportions look fantastic.
Beagle went with slightly slimmer legs to keep proportions balanced between both Rider and Armor mode. Some have complained they look to small (particularly the feet) but that’s the trade off. I’ve already gotten used to it and you can flip the shin guards out to create the illusion of beefier feet in Amor mode. Some will nitpick over it, I’m perfectly fine with the trade off.
But wait that’s not all! Beagle manages to not only get pistons into the leg armor to attach to the boots they have working shock absorbers that connect the arm gauntlets to the rest of the Armor mode. This is something toy makers have never done before and really adds to the “realism” of the design. The mechanism is smooth as butter and moves freely when you pose the arms.
At the 1/10th scale the Mospeada stands at 8 inches tall in Armor mode and 5 inches tall and 8 inches long in Cycle Mode. At this size, it stands out nicely on the shelf and mixes very nicely with my other collectibles.
You should have bought this already. Run, don’t walk and get it now! I admit that $250 to $300 is a lot for a piece like this and I realize it is out of most collectors’ budget but if you’re a Mospeada fan then you REALLY need to save your pennies and get yourself one, you won’t regret it. It is hands down the nicest Mospeada made. If you’re looking for a simpler transformation then stick with the original Gakken release, otherwise upgrade!
|Posted 9 February, 2009 - 17:49 by Atom