Iron Factory are the stylised and mostly IDW inspired legends collection. They are slightly smaller than the Magic Square G1 inspired legends.
There have a nice selection of Decepticon (Autobots also available and we can look at them next time), including Megatron, Tarn and many jets and seekers. Not pictured they also have an Overlord and Sixshot which are now quite difficult to obtain at reasonable prices.
They also currently have one combiner design which in my view provides a good combined size as well as suitably sized individual bots. Combiner combined size is contentious in any scale usually having at least one compromise of combined size, individual bot size or parts forming.
Here we have the IF figures with the Maketoys Giant which I prefer size-wise in combined mode and has a compatible aesthetic. The individually the bots are not right though.
While you can generally purchase most of there products for a month or two after release if you miss out they can be quite difficult to pick up later on; there are also more limited product runs in more niche decos. The current favourite for this is the seeker mold.
They are all fully transformable the result of which can vary due to cybertronian design and stylisations which can some times feel a bit lazy (which can sometimes be down to source material) but other work out really well.
Overall they are not as articulated as the magic square legends however they are still lots of fun. The inspiration of the design can be something you either love or hate but one thing is for sure it makes for an interesting collection of diverse characters that provide a solid alternative to another G1 cartoon collection.
My first step into a larger world. A non-transforming transformers premium action figure, do all roads in fact ultimately lead to 1/4 Statue as my prefered transformer reviewer Bobby Skull Face would say? Well it maybe heading that way, but as we are still on the step before lets wait and see.
The finish is amazing and I’m not usually into the lights (or electronics in general) in my figures but in this case I do feel it adds to the figure and no hunting for batteries as they come pre-installed. As it is a licensed products it is also complete with faction symbols
Other gimmicks and options include a removable face mask and options for configuring the fusion cannon
Poseability is good especially with the ab-crunch and how it collapses into itself. It also comes with a stand. The weakest part of the figure is the hand which are tight on the pins but pop out a lot when you are trying to manipulate them.
At around £320 it is a pricey figure add to the fact it does not transform make this type of figure a non-starter for some people. However if you look at the price of the upcoming takara MP’s in particular Optimus Prime the prime is not quite as bad as it might at first seem for a high end transformer products. For me the only problem is where and how to display it.
We are still waiting on news for when season 3 of Knights of Sidonia Anime series will be released on Netflix. In the mean time lets have a look at the Figma Garde Figures
We have two figures of the Garde, the space mech of the series. The Figma 261 Series 18 Garde (Blue with white) and the Figma 254 Series 17 Grade (white with red). These are basically the same design (and hence figure) but with restyle parts much like car is given a facelift.
The series 17 is numbered 704 and is the “hero” craft of the series know as the Tsugumori piloted by Nagate Tanikaze , while the 18 is numbered 291 which is piloted Izana Shinatose of which many are represented with various different numbers in the series
The figures are designed to be used with the supplied stands, they are extremely difficult to stand without them, which is fine as there are mostly depicted as flying though space. Accessories and options include replaceable hands, alternative firing head, bladed arm guards, spear and rail gun. The boost pack is adjustable and extendible.
If you prefer a more hands on model there is also the Kotobukiya Tsugumori Knights of Sidonia. This is the animation version and is 1/100 scale. Unfortunately I broke the c-clip on the neck which is a rather strange part of the model. The rail gun has many extension so can be extended to a ridiculousless length.
My First Attempt at some Black Talon Minitures for which I used 2 Owl C3 minitures
Miniatures that are black, blackish or mostly black can be a bit tricky. It is really easy to just make them too black, lose details and just make them very plane as you cannot shade them.
So in this case I painted the base colour as Mecha Color 69.022 Titan Dark Blue which I was quite please how it came out. I used a darker grey 69.039 Grey Z than I did on my North and South miniatures and 69.065 Dark Steel instead of the normal steel colour. Why red horns? Why not?
Next up another long term desk fixture was competed, a Southern Hydra
Painted up the same way as the rest of my southern forces. I was torn on if I should paint the hole “shoulder” guard red or just the top circle like I finally did
Today we have a quick look at the “other” 3rd Party legends scale figures; here we have Iron Factory EX-31 Dubhe and EX-36 Tyrant. These are of course small scale representation of IDW Megatron and Tarn.
These two Decepticon big shots both transform into tank like alt modes. EX-36 comes with alternative parts with no less than 3 different fusion cannons, 3 heads and alternative backpack, hip guards, shoulders and leg parts allowing you to make different version of megatron which have been show throughout the IDW comic run. Tarn’s colours are striking and he has a removable mask. The swappable hands on both figures also work well at this size of figure.
All in all two great figures and a great addition to any legends collection.
The last of the northern gears for a while, next up I have Peace River and some Black Talons in the works
First the Xmas2014 Chibi. I never really though all that much of the idea, but having put it together and painting it, I am quite fond of it. And it was free after all. I think I would like to obtain the others at some point.
2 Stripped Down hunters, the weapon on the one on the left is probably not rules legal any more.
The Gencon 2014 Headhunter
Northern Wildcat. This was originally going to be an arena gear but I decided to repose it to my northern force. The other wildcat is in my Nucoal force.
There are 3 main colour scheme Northern Gears are shown in (plus many other less used ones). As far as I know there is no official meaning to what each one is for. Today I’m going to show how I did my “Yellowish” scheme which I will arbitrarily call the Northern Guard Standard scheme.
The more brownish scheme will be for the Western Frontier Protectorate (WFP) and if I ever do any “white sand” gears they can be someone else.
I started with a grey undercoat. As usual for me this was Games Workshop Mechanicus Standard Grey spray.
2. The base coat colour. I used Vallejo Mecha Color Yellow Ochre (69.032). It took several coats by brush so if you have an air brush I would recommend using that
3. Paint the other armour parts with Vallejo Mecha Color Grey (69.037) and in the pictures is combined with the next step (because I forgot to take pictures) which is to go over the yellow ochre with Mecha Color Desert Dust Wash (69.522)
4. Paint the V-Engine and weapons (hand-held and rocket packs) with Mecha Color Gunmetal (69.058)
5. Paint the parts you want metal coloured but not as dark with mech color Steel (69.063) I did the barrels, the knees, treads, front of the head, grenades, any thing that looked like a metal plate and finally the raised or recessed bits on the shoulders.
6. Paint the head lens/sensor with a white paint first (any will do). Once it is dry paint over the white with GW Guilliman Blue Glaze. Paint the ports on the rocket pods with Mech Color SZ. Red (69.009). Finally Nuln Oil Shade on the light metal parts.
7. Lastly Paint the Base with GW Steel Legion Drab. Then add a texture to the base. In this case I used GW Armageddon Dunes.
I started collecting Heavy Gear Blitz miniatures around 2012, it was around that time that Wayland Games stocked a good amount of the miniatures which made it a good time to start collecting. They have since stopped stocking them so guess this was not the case for everyone (Shiny Games stock them now in the UK). I also got a few bits direct from the DP9 Website
My First Miniature purchase was a Northern Fire Support (2 Grizzlys, 2 Hunter and 1 Jaguar) squad, unfortunately one of the Hunter got build with the Jaguar arms but anyway.
Next off the large gear striders looked nice and large models so I went with a Peace River Cataphract, I also have a PRDF Fire Support squad that I did not finish painting and is one of the next things for me to paint up
And lastly the Nucoal Book came out along with quite a few miniatures, again a gear strider (Hussar) part of a Fire Support squad, an arena Wildcat and a complete Mountaineering squad (5 Lancers)
As with many miniature gamers/collectors I bought far more models than I actually finished painting or in some cases even got out of the box. Wayland Games had a massive clearance on there remaining heavy gear stock and I snapped up quite a bit. However I later sold almost all of the ones still in boxes about 3 years later. This still left me with quite a few unfinished miniatures which I have started to complete.
Next up where the Kick-starter plastics. However I only actually finished the 4 Jaguars at the time with the Kodiak and the Hunters been picked up much later at the end of 2018 (for reference the easiest way to tell when I completed a miniature is by the base colour and finish).
The Northern forces are getting the work done on them currently with 13 miniatures on the go at the moment with my more yellow colour scheme. But I also have trails for PRDF, CEF and a Southern Hydra almost done.
With the slow down in new figures in the Transformers Masterpiece and 3rd party equivalent scale we have seen the rise of the legends scale. The name comes from Hasbro which make a legends sized figure class. It is a size and not a scale so you get anything from mini-bots that fit in with deluxes to small seekers or Optimus Prime
As with anything transformers, 3rd party come along and do it better. Above are “Magic Square” (and Newage bumblebee) figures that are in the spirit of G1, fully transformable and most even have ab-crunches which can be rare even in full size figures.
Alternatively if you prefer a different aesthetic we have IDW inspired figures from a company called Iron Factory. They are even so slightly smaller and not as articulated. There are also entries in this scale from Newage, Toy World, Unique Toys and DX9. This is undoubtedly the growth area of 3rd party at this moment in time.