There are loads of things I loved about being a freelance writer. I could be ‘professional’ and cite how awesome it is to work with an assortment of cool people across a range of fields, or evangelise about the freedom of being your own boss. In truth though some of the coolest bits were the bits not to do with work – the freedom to walk the dog in the woods late afternoon, the lunchtime PUBG, the lack of trousers, those wonderful early-afternoon naps. And the late morning naps. Am quite keen on the mid-afternoon naps too. And y’know, those early morning naps aren’t bad either.
I’ve been looking forward to completing the ‘limb-bot misfits’ Combiner team for a while. Rook, Alpha Bravo, Off Road and now Blast Off are a great set – and rich for narratives. Underdogs bonded through their rejection. But the question has always been which voyager to unite them under.
After what felt like an eternity without any incoming bots, there has recently been a bit of a flurry. Following Crackup and Predaking already this month, an additional four bots have now rolled into town!
Combiners are perhaps the best example of the trade-off a design team has to make. Every Transformer is a delicate balancing act between robot, alt-mode and transformation. Whether you prioritise the look of the robot on your shelf or the feel and enjoyment of one in your hands is always the determining factor (aside from finances, perhaps) that what sort of collector you are.
On first impression Hasbro’s new Power of the Primes Predaking appears to prioritise play. Robot and, in particular, beast modes are fairly basic – a bit Fisher-Price, even. Razorclaw, in particular, looks like he was designed to “awwwww CUTE!” the Autobots to death. It’s a bit absurd, really.
Then you get to the combined mode and suddenly… you understand.