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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

TFC Neckbreaker and Madblender, Hercules is complete!

It has been an exciting ride, and unexpectedly short! When we first learned of the release schedule for the six members of the Hercules combiner these final two figures weren't even due until March and April. So imagine my surprise when they showed up at my doorstep two months ahead of schedule. I really must commend TFC Toys for not only sticking to their schedule and releasing everything ahead of time, but for providing excellent customer service throughout this entire process. As many people know Heavy Labor's waist has a fatal flaw that eventually destroys the ratcheting mechanism inside. Neckbreaker comes with an entirely new waist for Heavy Labor since attempting to fix the existing one usually destroys part of the figure. In the same vein Heavy Labor came with a replacement shovel for Exgraver because there was also a fatal flaw in the original shovel which caused stress and eventual breakage. Throughout the entire process they have refined their methods and produced a very high quality product on par with any other official figures I own. I don't believe we'll ever see a better representation of Devestator in both the combined mode and individual robot modes. Hercules feels exactly what a modern Devestator should be, not that unholy monstrosity that came out of Revenge of the Fallen.

Neckbreaker and Madblender hold up amazingly well when compared to their original counterparts. Neckbreaker deviates from the design a little more, but appropriately. Madblender is almost a completely faithful homage to Mixmaster, except of course that his mixing barrel splits into eight pieces as mountable weapons.

I need to reprolabel my Bonecrusher, he's naked.


I am also really pleased with the final Hercules combined mode. The figure is very stable, all the individual members connect very well, and there are no extra parts to keep track of (except maybe the hands). Although the figure can't be picked up by its head (a usual indicator of combiner strength), he is still very sturdy and holds up well with handling. He also has a wide range of motion and a lot of articulation which is something the original was sorely lacking. Finally, this guy is huge. Like bigger than Primus huge. I always found it odd that he was supposed to be the strongest and biggest combiner figure in G1, but his toy was most certainly the weakest. It falls apart if you look at it wrong. But this figure takes care of all that. He towers over every other classics figure, but still feels like he fits in. He is appropriately larger than Fansproject Bruticus and Superion.

His face also calls back to the original figure while still giving us a nice classics style update.

I really like the built in symmetry of this figure. Combiner figures by nature usually don't have a lot of symmetry due to being made up of different types of robots, but TFC did a nice job of making the forearms match each other bringing as well as appropriately weighting the figure with a large right shoulder to balance the crane of Dr. Crank. Of final note is Hercules' weapon. Each figure came with one small purple and red gun, all of which combine into a purple superblaster and a translucent red superblaster. I like the purple one myself so I'm using that one with my figure, but the 12 individual weapons allow for I don't know how many different combinations.

Old and New
I never really thought anyone could top Fansproject in terms of quality and execution, but due to figures with solid construction and ease of transformation, TFC has proved they are in it for the long run and are the new top dogs in my book.


  1. My only complaint is with Neckbreaker. They deviated too far from the original design for it to be a homage. Bonecrusher was my favorite G1 Constructicon so I was really excited about a new version...but this one is so disappointing in my book. Combined I have no problems, but as an individual he seems to be the weakest link in the group.

  2. Very impressive. I think Herc will go down as one of the best of the third party sets. I'm still holding out for a Fansproject update to the Classics Constructicons, though.

  3. Looks very good, from the pictures it looks like Bonecrusher is the weakest in combined form. He looks ok in robot, and great in dozer. But without that shovel blade over the shoulder just looks odd.

    I only have Scavenger right now, hopefully the rest will be here by next week. That way I can judge how it looks first hand.

    Knock on wood I don't have any QC issues with them beyond I guess Long Haul.

  4. I like how you say the "unholy monstrosity that came out with ROTF", that is one seriously messed up design. I'm delighted to find out the picking combiners up by their head is a test of their strength....hahaha

  5. Flywheels & Purple Knight: Unfortunately Neckbreaker is definitely the weakest. I wasn't really looking forward to him myself and he impressed me more than I thought he would, but you're right, without that huge shovel he doesn't quite stack up.

    Jonesy: I think the 'Giant' Devestator figure coming out from Maketoys is partially designed by the Fansproject guys, at least that is what I have heard thus far.

    HD: I first found out about that technique with JRX!

  6. I heard the same thing, Maketoys is supposed to be close to Fansproject. Especially one of the designers.

    Supposedly FP is going to tackle Menasor and the Stunticons.