List One: Japanese and European Variants

| G1 Japan | Micromasters | G1 Europe | G1.5 vs G2: Japan & Europe |

| G2 Japan & Europe | Beast-Era (All) | CarRobots | Reissues (All) |

| Micron Legends | Superlink | BinalTech | Robot Masters vs TF Juniors |

| Galaxy Force | 2007 Movie Exclusives |

It needs a mention: Europe is a big place. Unlike Japan, there are many, many countries in what I call Europe/UK. Where there is a need to breakdown a list by a specific country, I've done so on the previous page (Italy, Greece, and China, for example). For the most part, everything else gets lumped. There was a time when only packaging changes were notable. Now, mold-changes are coming out of the woodwork. :-)

We start with a short version of the catagory. Items that I feel should be expanded upon are listed below in greater detail. And we know how much I love greater detail. :-) Heheh. (Complete listings always in-process...send in your submissions.) :-) Also, have a look at Morg's Japanese List and the Complete Euro-Tf list.)

In these modern times, with everything coming out of one factory, worldwide distribution, and standardization of the tri-logo packaging...we hoped we wouldn't see mold and paint changes in these toys anymore. Wishful thinking. :-) The changes keep coming (as you can see from the lists below), no matter which direction the toys are coming (here to there, or there to here). Japan still sees different packaging from most of the rest of the world, and US toy laws mean that the toys will be modified before they are released. So we'll track them here. Enjoy.

G1 (Japan): Metrotitan, Soundblaster (and Buzzsaw), Black Zarak, Artfire, Stepper, Astrotrain, Grand Maximus, Twincast (and Steeljaw), Goshooter, Minerva, Battle Gaia, Guard City, Greatshot, Blue Baccus, Black Shadow, Darkwings, God Ginrai, Sixnight, Rumbler, Slicer, Hardspark, Blaze, and...a number of misc Micromaster recolors, as well as a number of figures released in Giftsets. (Although one could arguably consider those mostly of a packaging-variant nature.) Also, Headmaster heads, Liokaiser, Landcross, and more.

G1 (Europe): Action Masters, Classics, Obliterators, Rescue Force, recycled Machine Wars, Overlord, Motorvators...

G1.5 vs G2 (Japan and Europe): Trakkons, Lightformers, Predators vs Turbomasters Giftsets...

G2 (Japan and Europe): Sparkabots, Firecons, Archforce, Sureshot, Gobot Optimus Prime and Megatron...

Beastwars / BWII / BW Neo / BW Metals: Pretty much the whole series. :-) (See Below)

Car Robots: Pretty much the whole series. :-) (See Below)

Reissues: (See Below)

Micron Legends: (See Below)

Superlink: (See Below)

Binaltech: (See Below)

| G1 Japan | Micromasters | G1 Europe | G1.5 vs G2: Japan & Europe | G2 Japan & Europe |

| Beast-Era (All) | CarRobots | Reissues (All) | Micron Legends | Superlink |

| BinalTech | Robot Masters vs TF Juniors | Galaxy Force | 2007 Movie Exclusives |

Generation 1 (Japan)

Soundblaster / Twincast / Metrotitan / SixKnight / Megatron

Our friend Soundblaster, a remold of Soundwave. New tape door, new colors. Who-hoo! Note that Soundblaster comes with the later-release 'hollow' wrist (versus the initial solid wrist) as well as a modified late-G1 door (hinge is hooked, but door is thicker to accomodate 2 tapes). Other interesting mold-changes include the exposed hinge and further-out buttons when compared to the US-issue of Soundwave. (See Decepticon section of vari-site for details.) (Pic) Note that Soundblaster was reissued; with the exception of copyright, the toy is nearly identical (see Reissues section below). Twincast is a recolored/remolded version of Blaster. The story in Japan goes along the lines of Blaster and Soundwave being killed, and being rebuilt into these fellows. Note that, in addition to the color-change, both cassette doors are remolded, and can now hold two cassettes each. In addition, the Steeljaw thet comes with Twincast has a little 'weakness' sticker on him. More... Metrotitan is a recolored and remolded version of Metroplex, meant to be a Decepticon. (Note that one of his legs was remolded to incorporate a Micromaster ramp port.) Sixknight is your basic recolor. Megatron, as released in Japan, is covered in his own section. It's a doozy, let me tell ya. :-) Between the color and mold-changes, multiple releases...well, just go have a look. :-)

Soundblaster (Boxed) | Soundblaster vs Soundwave (Front)

Soundblaster vs Soundwave (Angled) | Metrotitan (Boxed)

Metroplex vs Metrotitan | Twincast (Boxed) | SixKnight (Boxed) | Megatron

White Astrotrain / Minerva / Goshooter / Gramd Maximus / Darkwings / GodGinrai

White Astrotrain is a long story. Click to read it. (Note also that there is now a reissue White Astrotrain, see the reissues section below). Minerva is a recolored Nightbeat, meant to be a different (female) character in Headmasters. Goshooter is Siren recolored. Grand Maximus is a recolored Fortmax. He came with extra goodies, such as a Master Sword, and a Pretender shell for his head unit. (Note also the Japanese-release of Fortmax came with the Master Sword as well, compared to the US version.) Darkwings (Buster / Hydra) are recolors of the Darkwind / Dreadwing pm planes. (They also came packaged as a giftset.) God Ginrai is a better version of the Powermaster Prime toy. :-) Metal, chrome, retractable fists, you name it. There was also a chest plate variant on the original Godbomber: The launching look vs the retracted look. (Giftset vs Individually-Boxed Version.) (Note also that God Ginrai has seen reissue both in Japan and the USA.)

White Astrotrain | GrandMax (Boxed) | GrandMax vs FortMax | God Ginrai

Minerva (Loose) | Minerva (Boxed) | Goshooter (Boxed) | Darkwings (Boxed)

Blue Baccus / Black Shadow / Greatshot / Black Zarak / BattleGaia / Guard City

Blue Baccus and Black Shadow are recolors (and slight remolds, on the face in-particular...changed from human/vampire to robot faces) of the American Crossblades and Thunderwing, respectively. (Note: do not be fooled into buying the fake BlackShadow.) Greatshot is a recolored (and slight remold, horns on robot head, and a rhino-beast head) Sixshot. Black Zarak is a recolored and remolded Scorponok (helmet altered, staff-acc added, etc). Funny...the remolding of the helmet makes it look like you don't even need the hm fig at all, as it now has a face :-) Note also that BZ comes in two versions, a light and dark-gold-chrome. (Pic) BattleGaia and Guard City are recolored versions of the Combaticons and Protectabots, respectively. Battle Gaia is completely recolored...not a single combaticon was left unchanged. I quote mojo8 here: "Battle Gaia has Macau stampings, but the odd thing is Great Cannon (Onslaught) has no country stamping! I think it was supposed to be stamped Macau, but I guess they forgot to do it..." It is intersting to note that in G2, the US got a red Swindle, and a white Blastoff...also intersting is how the Battle Gaia colorscheme was the victim of frequent knockoffs...Guard City was made in China (not Japan or Macau) so we have different manufacturer-stampings right off the bat :-) In addition, Firechief (Hotspot) is red instead of blue, Flyup (Blades) is blue insted of red, Streetstar (Streetwise) is white, not light gray, Safety (Firstaid) has an orange chest instead of a red one...Sparkride (Groove) is pretty much identical to the silver-chest version (Defensor), except for the country marking.

One final, major point of interest on the japanese versions of Defensor, Superion, and Bruticus: the team leaders come with working launchers! In the usa, the feature is there, but the parts needed to make it work (buttons, springs) are not, while in japan, they got the works. It's worth it to own the japanese versions just for that :-) For TONS more information, I encourage you to visit Crazy-Steves' Scrambled!, formerly a part of Scrambled City (but now hosted here-thanks Steve!)

Blue Baccus (Boxed) | Blue Bacus (Inside) | Black Shadow (Boxed) | Black Shadow (Inside)

Battle Gaia | Guard City | Greatshot (Boxed) | Greatshot (Inside) | Greatshot vs Sixshot

Black Zarak (Boxed) | Black Zarak (Inside) | Black Zarak (Head)

Artfire / Stepper / Hoist

Artfire and Stepper; recolored (and slightly remolded) versions of Jazz and Inferno. Handholes were widened, and a spot molded so that they could each carry their gun in vehicle mode. It is further interesting to note that the US will soon recieve a reissue of Stepper; now called Richochet. Molding is identical to the reissue Jazz (see: Reissues), with the addition of safety missles. Hoist: addition of 'wrecker' sticker on the side (nice). Unknown at this time if it came in both moldings, but the presumption is that it came in the later-version mold (see: Autobots) versus the earlier Diaclone mold (See: Pre-TFs). Here's an interesting tidbit: the 'stars' catalog (showing mail-order TFs) came with Dirge on the inner foldout flap in the USA, we had Thundercracker. ;-) (Pic)

Artfire (Loose) | Stepper (Loose) | Artfire (Boxed) | Stepper(Boxed)

Wrecker Hoist (Boxed)

Dinoking / Blaze / Hardspark / Guzzle / Ranger

Dinoking: Monstructor in the US line. Maybe it's a Gestault, maybe it's a set of Micromasters, maybe it's a set of Pretenders. At least it's G1. :-) (It's also a Giftset in Japan.) So we have a place for it here. Instead of rubber monster shells, they came with dinosaur-looking shells. Blaze and Hardspark are recolors of the Sparkabots Sizzle and Guzzle, while a different 'Guzzle' is a recolor the Firecon Cindersaur. Ranger is a recolored version of the powermaster Joyride mold. (The others were not recolored, but renamed...Lightfoot is Getaway, and Roadking is Slapdash) It should be noted that there were also a set of 3 recolored PM engines released in Japan. (No vehicles to go with them). Speaking of Powermasters...Doubledealer was changed as well. His PM holder accessory was chromed, and the missle tip painted. One of the micro-figs colors changed as well.

Hardspark vs Guzzle | Blaze vs Sizzle | Guzzle vs Cinersaur

Joyride vs Ranger (Loose) | PM Engines

DoubleDealer (Boxed) | DoubleDealer (Insert)

Monstructor vs Dinoking (Robot Modes) | Monstructor (Shells) | Dinoking (Shells)

Liokaiser vs. Rescue Force

Liokaiser (vs Rescue Force): Liokaiser was a Breastforce combiner in Japan, released both in individual boxes, and in Giftset form. Four of the 6 members were released in Europe as the Autobot Rescue Force. These units did not come with the breastforce partners, or gestault accessories. Note also that Rescue Force (a List Two variant) came with red vs silver accessories.

It's further interesting to note that there have been Chinese-releases of Liokaiser (both Giftset and boxed versions) with altered copyright stampings (which match Rescue Force, leads a person to wonder if perhaps the later-issue Chinese version was used for the Rescue Force version). More...

Landcross vs. Landcross Reissue

Landcross vs Reissue Landcross: The vintage Landcross is in the catagory of Transformers that saw release in both Japan and China. While many TFs released in China had nothing more than package-changes, Landcross underwent something a little more drastic. For starters, the copyright changed from Taiwan to China. For another, there were sticker and paint-changes (light vs dark, silver vs white).

Landcross Taiwan vs China | China vs Japan Boxed

What makes things very interesting is the reissue (see Reissues section for more details). Like the Reissue Micro 6 Teams, Landcross is once again produced under lisense in China.

The Headmasters That Never Were

Have a look at 6 Japanese Headmasters that didn't make it to the US...or even get their own bodies. :-)

Kirk and Trizor (Loose)

These were Japan-exclusive heads that were given away in stores when you bought a Throttlebot. (Great way to clear out the excess, I guess.) They came in color, and in all-white. Pictured below are the colored-ones.

Top left to right: Trizor, Loafer, Kirk. Bottom left to right: Lione, Lodony, Shuffler.

Mail-Away Gnaw

Since we're talking about exclusives, I thought I would mention a unique mail-away exclusive for Japan; Sharkticon a US Box. :-) I dunno about you, but I'm used to Japanese mail-aways that come in a plain white box with unique blue-ink boxwork (Ratchet comes to mind) versus the plain white USA mailers. But for whatever reason, it was easier to offer Gnaw in this format. Maybe we had too-many of them here, and they were sent there. I dunno. I mention it because it's one more piece in the exclusives offering puzzle...a mystery that grows with each passing year. :-)

Galaxy Shuttle

Galaxy Shuttle: Basically a Big shuttle that connected to Countdown...had a package-variant. :-) (Pic)

There are very few differences in each version; functionally identical. Between the package, and a slight paint-apps color change, there's not much. But even a little gets documented. :-) And hey, it's not like he didn't see a change in the Brave line, so there's that... :-)

Foreign Micro Recolors

There were a number of them. It can be argued that many of these could technically be listed as Giftsets (albeit not exclusive, as we got them carded), as some of them came packaged in a box with an exclusive 'Micro Trailer' (which attached to Star Convoy, Grandus, and Sky Garry). However, I've decided to list the micro variants on their own page here.

These Micros are broken down into three catagories, based on type of variant. (The six-combiner gestaults, for example, are also cross-listed in the Japanese Giftsets listing.) The three sections on foreign micros are:

1) Foreign Recolor Micros
2) Micro 6 Combiners
3) Micro Giftsets

(See Also: Autobot, Decepticon, and Combiner Micros.)

Generation 1 (Europe)

It needs a mention: Europe is a big place. There are many, many countries. Where there is a need to breakdown a list by a specific country, I've done so on the previous page (Italy and Greece come immediately to mind). For the most part, everything else gets lumped here. There was a time when only packaging changes were notable. Now, more mold-changes are coming out of the woodwork. :-)

Note: Some people say that MB is the original, and euro-classics are really considered reissues. I won't argue. I'm only documenting variants. :-) The specific changes in molding/color are listed here. If you need a reminder of what was commonly released in Europe/UK, have a go at the Complete List of Euro-Tfs. One thing I find interesting are the transitioned mold changes between G1, Euro Classic, and G2. It's a nice smooth transition, though it doesn't look like it if you only compare the American stuff. ;-) Heck, just looking at the boxes themselves is kinda cool...

(Please insert witty line here.)

Throttlebots / Combaticons

Throttlebots and Combaticons: Some Throttlebots actually came without the rubsign indent. Most UK Classic Combaticons didn't have rub indents either. :-) Listed in the Japan vs Macau subsection, it notes that specific units, unlike the other Macau units (say, USA versions), have no rubsign indent. Crazy-Steve adds: "On the back of the Onslaught box, the Combaticons are shown with fluorescent green details (Swindle is entirely lime-green), though the toys were not created that way. The entire Classic line had that handsome gold packaging like US year six. Some of the heat-decals were removed." Maz would also like me to make a brief mention about the Classic-era GiG and Greek Giftsets for the Constructicons and Protectobots. :-) Those are in the Giftset section. In-fact, as new discoveries are made, we've had to create a seperate Greek subsection for TFs. Enjoy.

Tracks / Prowl / Jazz / Sunstreaker / Huffer

Autobot Cars: Of course, initial-releases were MB, and had styro inserts. The Classics line had bubble-inserts, and gold packaging.

Tracks: The MB version is red! Yeah, that's true. Classic version has black shins instead of silver (or plain) diecast like the original. (There's also a change between classic and MB on the wheels, riveted vs plain wheel hubs.)

Prowl: The Prowl Classic has "Diaclone" written on the shield stickers, and some of the units horns are matte red (stickers, in some odd cases) instead of shiny red paint. PLEASE, people: do not be fooled by someone taking a Classic Prowl, and shoving it into an American box!

Jazz: For Jazz, the Headlight colour. (US had a change between early and late-release on the headlight sticker-colors.) (The Euro-version came with the late-change.) Note also the lack of "Martiinii" on doors (but then again, later us-issue rubsign Jazzs were like that too).

Sunstreaker: Sunstreaker took a step back in molding, being reissued from an earlier Takara mold vs a later updated Hasbro one.

Huffer: An interesting problem is sorting out the European variants of Huffer, as he came both in regular and pipes colors (and of-course, the Mexican one was imported over there as well, adding to the confusion).

Starscream / Thrust

Decepticon Jets: Some slight color variations on the blue of Starscream, similar to the late movie release in the USA. In addition, it is noted that the UK recieved a wave of angled (vs straight) launch tabs for the launchers of Starscream and Thrust. (Pic) Note the Euro-booklet on that specimen as well. :-)

Snarl / Sludge

Snarl: Dino head is a more opaque black instead of clear/transparent. (Listed also as one of the differences between early and late-G1/G2 versions in the US.)

Sludge: For some reason, a few of the Sludges have been found with full-spray on their heads instead of detailed sprayops as normal.


Constructicons: The G2 yellow Constructicons we know so well cause a bit of controversy here. Since they do not have the G2 moniker, people have taken to calling them G1 yellow Constructicons (or G1.5). If you ever hear people arguing about it, that's one of the things they're referring to. :-) They are slightly different. The colors are a bit off from the G2 yellow releases. They do not come with combiner parts. There's still more. As Thomas adds, "Hook misses the square metal pin that allows to hook (no pun intended) Bonecrusher to him."

But wait! There's more! As I said, that's *one* of the things that are referred to. The *other* thing...are the French G1 yellow Constructicons. :-) Molded as G1, complete with G1 backercards and rubsigns, they hail from France. More...

Action Masters: Slicer / Rumbler

Action Masters Rumbler and Slicer: The figures are recolors of Sprocket and Wheeljack, respectively. The vehicles they came with were removed completely, and replaced with motorized rolling vehicles/exosuits in Europe. If only we would have gotten them. :-) Much cooler than the 'flying cars' we were given, if you ask me...

Rumbler (Boxed) | Slicer (Loose) | Rumbler / Slicer vs Sprocket / Wheeljack (Loose)

Action Master Bombshell

Action Master Bombshell comes in blue or purple. :-) In the words of Argus: "Well some extra info on the guys: the deeper purple one has the white MACAU stamp on his foot. His Con logo is a lot smaller on the sticker so there is a lot more silver going on there. His eyeslits are a teeny bit less wide. (This is the paint btw.) The less vibrant purple Bombshell doesn't have the MACAU stamp. Instead of this it had the addtition of the word...CHINA in his left foot copyright. ;) MACAU and CHINA again folks. ;) I've been unable to find any major molding difference so far though."

Action Master Bombshell

Action Masters: Take-Off / Omega Spreem / Circuit

Take-Off variants are paint-app in nature as well, in this case light vs dark-orange. (Also note the light vs dark-green.) The stampings on the units remain identical.

Omega Spreem doesn't get by unscathed, either. Light vs dark red, and pink vs purple paint on the chest. (Note also the differences in the sticker-symbol on the shoulders.)

Circuit is another one with light vs dark paint-apps. You'll notice it most prominantly on the orange on his torso, as well as the paint on his head and headlights (light vs dark orange; purple vs pink; dark vs light red).

Take-Off | Omega Spreem | Circuit | Circuit (Head)

Action Master Elites (Carded) | Euro Action Masters (Catalog)

Rescue Force

Rescue Force: (See: Liokaiser) Rescue Force members came with either red, or silver accessories (as ell as packaged differently on the blister card). Only 4 of the 6 team-members were released, recolored, and without the parts/accessories needed to combine. (Argus adds: "Well, technically you *could* make an armless and headless autobot version.")

Car (Carded) | Jet (Carded) | Drill Machine (Carded)

Tank (Carded) (Note claws instead of guns.) | Tank (Loose) (Note gray vs red claws.)

It's further interesting to note that the copyright stampings are the later-version (in other words, not Japan) which leads a person to wonder if perhaps the molding was taken off of the later-issue Chinese version. More...


Overlord, originally thought Japanese-only, actually saw release in Europe as well. Surprise! He has colored purple pieces (wings, shoulder cones, all accessories) that come in 2 different colors..indigo, and violet. If you remember your ROYGBIV, you KNOW that these are considered two different colors, not just shades of each other!


Wings and Guns | Wings (Closeup)

Oh, but we're not done. Not by a long shot. :-) In the words of Morg, "Overlord was released in Japan, Europe, Greece (is that in Europe?) and Australia, basically everywhere except the US, Canada and South America. The version released in Japan has the pink parts while the other versions came with the purple parts, purple parts where never included in the Japanese version. European/Australian/Greek Overlords have a completely different copyright to the Japanese version: E/A/G copyright is Hasbro made in Taiwan whereas the Japanese version is copyright Takara and made the top of my head, China. If you want the exact copyrights I'll look them up. Also, the paint application on the eyes is different: E/A/G Overlords have light red paint which sits firmly within the eye lines, but Japanese Overlords have dark red paint which sits over the eye lines. Hope that makes sense. :) Argus pointed out a while ago that European/A/G Overlords come with 3 or 4 (I forget) pink parts from the Japanese release. This isn't exactly accurate. There are 3 or 4 parts in the European/A/G release which ARE lighter than the other parts but they are not the same colour as the Japanese version. These parts are a shade which is halfway between the 2...confusing eh? Anyway, nitpicking over. :)"


Road Ceaser in addition to being released individually and in Giftset format in Japan, Europe saw the three cars were released in different colors, and...without the parts to make the gestault. Yay. :-) (Pic) Argus goes into more details about Motorvator Variants, Motorvators being the European name. ;-)

Turbomasters / Predators

Rotorstorm, Thunderclash, and Skyquake: A number of these fellows were released in 1995 in the US as Machine Wars figures, with their color scheme toned down, and their gimmicks removed. (Note that Predator jets and Turbomaster cars saw a late release in Giftset form in Japan.) Note that Skyquake was released again in 2004, this time in the US as King Atlas (or rather, Machine Wars Starscream was, though this time the scope works. :-) A picture of missles can be found here, for those that are confusing the colors. More details on King Atlas here.

G1.5 vs G2: Europe and Japan

This is an interesting catagory. Items that were released in Europe...were also released in other parts of Europe, and then exclusively in Japan (but not in the USA, those bums). Names and packages changed. In many cases, the stickers and paintapps had slight changes as well. An interesting example would be the...

Turbomaster Cars / Predator Jets

Turbomaster Cars and Predator Jets: Originally released in Europe in a number of variant packages (and sticker formats, depending on country) they were later released in Japan in a Giftset format. (See Also: Euro TF listing.) Interestingly, while the toys themselves stayed mostly the same, the guns and stickers changed...I've come across 3 different versions of the guns for these guys, based on where they were released. (Dark sparkly gun vs light brown gun, flat vs rounded pegs, etc.) (Pic) It's quite annoying, really.

Makes it very confusing, doesn't it? As mentioned above, the larger figures in this series saw release in the Machine Wars line in the USA. The most commonly accepted names in Europe (though not their only names) are as follows, Cars: Hurricane, Boss, Flash, and Scorch, and Jets: Talon, Snare, Falcon, Skydive. In Japan, they were repackaged and renamed as, TF-06 Spinroad vs Darkjet, TF-07 Fireroad vs Shadowjet, TF-08 Checkroad vs Moonjet, and TF-09 Machroad vs Flarejet.

Trakkons / Lightformers

Trakkons and Lightformers: Four more very interesting Transformers that America didn't get. Nifty in their own right, they were like deluxe versions of the Predator jets; they had backpacks that had lazer-sights and made ratcheting sounds. They were released both in carded and boxed versions (between series 10 and 11, respectively) and like the Turbomasters, went through name-changes along the way. The commonly accepted European names for these figures are:

Fearswoop (Boxed) | Fearswoop (Carded) | Fearswoop (Loose)

Calcar (Loose) | Ironfist | Deftwing (Carded)


Powermasters: Perhaps you should call them the G2 Powered-Masters...they're like Throttlebots. Ick. And again, several package versions on these little fellows. :-)

Bulletbike | Meanstreak | Ironhide | Staxx


Obliterators: Another package-problem (and name-change situation; crossing the line between G1 and G2) Anyways, although the toys appear the same, the stickers seem to change between countries. Take Pyro, for example:

See that pic above? Aha! The reason for this is because people could choose the sticker they wanted on the front based on their preferred language (some choose several of them). Neat, to include them all on one sheet. Here's a scan of the sticker sheet. (Pic)

Pyro (Boxed) | Pyro (Loose) | Clench (Loose)

Generation 2 (Europe and Japan)

Europe: Axelerators

G2 cars with pink windows. Eeeewww! :-) Well, that's what happened in Europe for G2. Renamed Axelerators, now called Hotrider, Rapido, Skram, and Zap.

Europe: Sparkabots / Firecons

The Sparkabots and Firecons got the clear-treatment, and were sent out as G2 toys. Wee.

Europe: Aquaspeeders

The four G2 Water-shooting cars were recolored and re-released as Aquaspeeders Aquafend, Deluge, Jetstorm, and Speedstream.

Europe: Stormtroopers

Exclusive Euro-Water Launchers: Called Stormtroopers. The four we *didn't* get. Yeah, there were more. :-) Like we needed them. Anyways,(presuming you can sense a theme) these came with several different names as well, though the most commonly accepted names for the figures are:

Drench & Aquablast | Rage & Hydrahead

Aquablast (Variant) | Drench (Variant)

Europe: Archforce / Sureshot

Hero Megs was released as Archforce (blank chest sticker). Hero Prime recieved the same blank-chest treatment, and was renamed Sureshot.

Europe: Constructicons

Constructicons: The yellow versions without gestault accessories. :-) (Pic) It's a tough call. Many like to call these the euro-yellow G1 constructicons. But not me. :-)

Japan: Gobots: Optimus Prime / Megatron / Soundwave

Japan: Gobots Prime, Megatron, and Soundwave were released with little 'T's on their hood (unlike their blank USA counterparts). (Well ok, technically, Soundwave *did* have the T in the's only a pack-sticker change on him...oooh, USA edition! :-)

Note that there were a number of other toys released in the Euro/UK line, but not all of them had changes/variants...or their variants are listed in a different section. :-)

Beast Wars / BWII / BW Neo /
BW Metals / Beast Wars Returns

For another look at this era, check out Ben Yee's page. The listings below are only for toys that had variants (of course). :-)

Beast Wars: Stuff from the first series of the '95 USA.

Beast Wars II: Stuff from the second series of the USA, as well as recycled G2 and Machine Wars stuff.

Beast Wars Neo: A lot of stuff we didn't see. (Interestingly, some of the 'exclusive' molds in this series are now showing up in our newer series, like Armada, etc.)

Beast Wars Metals: Slightly different hues; toys say faction name (Cybertron, Destron) instead of the actual name of the toy, as in the American versions.

Beast Wars Returns: 2005 Japanese reissue of the USA Beast Machines line, and Japan's BW 10th Anniversary.

(See Also: Japanese Beast Giftsets Listings)

(see also: Korean Transformers)

Beast Wars

Primal / Show-Accurate Primal / Clear Primal / Burning Primal / Blue Primal: Man, what a lot of Primals! :-) The Japanese sure do love their clear, limited, and lucky-draw versions. Whew. Shawn adds; "Regarding Primal fur...On the American releases of the Optimus Primal mold (Beast Wars and Universe), the "cowl" behind his robot head is lumpy, kinda like the fur on the back, but on the 3 Japanese releases of Convoy that I have (Clear, Burning, and TV Gray), the inside of the cowl is smooth."

Armordillo (also released in a giftset with snapper, note the color-change to red), Cheetor (Shadow Panther, same molding, different colors), Rhinox (note the grey paint with tan highlights, versus our tan one...and the oreo-cookie version in foxkids), Scorponok (also released as the Botcon Japan-exclusive Doublepunch, and USA Botcon Sandstorm), Skyshadow (Blendtron), Tigatron (White vs Creme US version), Dinobot (note their brown vs our pink, and the nice gold on the head), Waspinator (slight-changes to green plastic coloring), and Blackarachnia (lighter gold highlights, grey instead of green).

Beast Wars II

The Autorollers (from G2), Bighorn (Bonecrusher), Bigmos (Transquito), Dirge/Thrust (Machine Wars recolors, as well as recycled for the Car Robots/RID line), Diver (Spittor) (also released as Transmetal Spittor) (note the Volcano Playset), Drillnuts (Drillbit), Gigastorm (Trypticon), Mantis (Manterror), Megastorm (recolored camo-version of the G2 Megatron tank...also diddled with the weapons-hinge so it closes properly), Powerhug (Retrax), Scuba (ClawJaw) (also known as Ikard w/Takotank) (note also the vs PK, and the Transmetal Clawjaw), Starscream and BB (Recolored G2 Dreadwing), and Tonbot (Jetstorm).

DJ, Gimlet, and and Motorarm (Circadian, Seaclamp and Ramhorn) were sold seperately, and as a Tripledacus (Tripredacus) Giftset. Santon (Ironhide), Skywarp (Silverbolt), and Lio Junior (Prowl) were available seperately, or as the Magnaboss Giftset (note the additional sprayops on the Japanese versions) (note also that there are additional versions of Lio Jr). God Neptune is recolored from Piranacon/Seacons (like the American version of the Piranacon giftset, one member of the team was ommitted).

There is some argument as to whether or not the cyborg beasts are a variant, as they were heavily the point of being completely different toys (then again, we say the same thing for Killerpunch/Guiledart...oh, well). The series of four includes: Dirgegun (Waspinator), Thrustol (Dinobot), Hellscream (Cybershark), and Max-B (Wolfang).

Dirgegun (Waspinator), Thrustol (Dinobot) | Hellscream (Cybershark), and Max-B (Wolfang)

Lio Convoy | Flash Lio Convoy | Black Lio Convoy | Galvatron Lio Convoy

Catalog Pic | Comparison

Beast Wars Neo

Sharpedge (Cybershark) (again, considering how extensively modified it is from Cybershark, one could argue it was a different toy), Magmatron (sparks were swapped from Predacon to Maximal in the us version, as well as a slightly different color on the yellow paint), Crazybolt (Iguanas), Bump (Armordillo) (also released in a Giftset with Snapper), Drancon (Skyshadow), Elephorca (Torcha), Randy (Razorbeast), Rockbuster (Razorclaw), Survive (Polarclaw, Barbearian) (also released as a Japan-exclusive toy Grizzly-1), also a number of the Dinobots released in the BM and Armada series: Archadia (BM Airaptor), Bazooka (Armada ??), Guiledart (BM Triceradon and Armada ???), Hardhead (BM Dinotron), Hydrar (Terrorsaur) (also Fractyl and Lazorbeak), Killerpunch (a List Two variant, as it's a remolded Guiledart), Sabreback (BM Striker and Armada ???), Sling (Armada???). I have just one question: Why do a mail-order moon?!

Big Convoy / Black Big Convoy. Unit was recolored and released in America in the 2004 Universe line as Nemesis Prime (Pic 1 | Pic 2)

Prize Version Galvatron? Chrome Neo dragon, unproven origin.

Beast Wars Metals

Most of the Metals assortment in the Japanese Beast Wars line have been altered in some way. As mentioned earlier, instead of individual names (Cheetor, Optimus Primal, etc) The units came with their faction designation imprinted on them (Cybertron, Destron).

Rattrap: The color-change is fairly obvious when you compare them. :-) The Cybertron version is darker brown and deeper red compared to his USA counterpart. In addition, there was a recolored white and orange puzzle version released. (The USA saw two further issues of Rattrap, called Walrat (Walmart blue version), and Fox Kids Rattrap respectively.)

Silverbolt saw a major color-change. The Japanese version is white (not as white as the Botcon Windrazor, of course) while ours is grey. Rampage and Depthcharge show very minor changes, most notably the hue of the Transmetal coating; Depthcharge, in-particular, has the deep gold color. (The USA version had a limited pale gold version, and a later bulk-release of chrome.)

Megatron underwent a plastics color-change; the Japanese version is a much darker brown. This unit was packed both seperately and in giftset form (see Primal, below). In-addition, there was a chrome-silver version, also available individually or in giftset form.

Optimus Primal in Japan sports different colors as well. Prime and Megs were packaged seperately and as a Giftset. In addition, there were Chrome and Gold versions of these figures released in both individual and giftset form, and a rather rare Chrome Primal toy, colloquielly called Pioneer Primal (Named after the company it was an exclusive for). Finally, in the Convoy catagory, we have Optimal Optimus, who, like all Transmetals in Japan, sported slightly different metalized color coatings.

And let us not forget the X-9 Ravage was recolored and released as Tigatron for Botcon 2002.

Beast Wars Returns

Released in Japan several years after its debut in the USA as Beast Machines, BWR figures consist of the following assortment:

BR-01 - Convoy
BR-02 - Cheetus
BR-03 - Rattle
BR-04 - Black Widow
BR-05 - Megatron

In the first batch, the only unit that had any noticeable variant was Blackarachnia, a TRU Japan exclusive more pinkish-purple than its USA counterpart...however, later releases of BWR toys gave us Obsidion, Stryka, Tankdrone (as Tankorr), Cycledrone (as Thrust), Silverbolt and the Megatron head. All of these units have striking color differences when compared to their USA counterparts. (Silverbolt, in particular, looks more like his BM cartoon color scheme.)

Recolor Mega-Cheetor: Prize version, Black and chrome.

There should also be a mention of the BW 10th Anniversary in Japan. Highlights include new paintaps on some classic BW molds (Cheetor gets eyes, as does Rhinox). There's a show-accurate big set of Prime and Megs (saw later release at TRU).

A final note on Beast stuff: An interesting problem. A line of toys that we didn't get, that had variants in other countries. The toys are nearly identical. Japan had a run of Beast-era toys that didn't make it to American shores. However, they were reissued in Korea...oddly, in one case, not even in the Beast Wars line, but by Sonokong (See: Korea). It seems that a repeat of the Brave line happened again. Here's a sample below; the others can be found in the Korean variants section. Note that some key pieces were released in Japanese packaging vs Korean packaging. (Importing at it's finest.)

Longrack (Japan) | Longrack (Korea) | Heinrad (Japan) | Heinrad (Korea)

Galvatron (Japan) | Galvatron (Korea)

Car Robots

Car-Robots is no better; though America saw most of the line, a key piece (Brave Maximus) didn't make it over here again, due to safety laws (originally Fortress Maximus in 86). However, again, Korea had a release of it, nearly identical to the Japanese one. (We're finding that, excepting slight changes in paint-shadings, only the packaging seems to be altered.)

...yes, pretty much the whole series. :-) Most of the units came over to the USA in the RID line, with major-changes in paint apps and molding (extra autobot symbols, different plastic, etc). The links below go to images and comparison articles.

Car-Brothers: Different colors, molding, etc.

Fire Convoy (Prime) / God Magnus (Ultra Magnus): Different plastic and mold/copyright changes. (Note also the release of a limited Black Fire Convoy, as well as a limited gold-rimmed Crystal Fire Convoy.)

Buildbots (Buildking): Plastic changes, color changes, and copyright changes. ;-)

Combatrons (Decepticons): Upside-down G2 auto symbols, totally new colors) (Note that these were originally G1 Combaticons.) (Note that we got gray accessories, while Japan got gold accessories...our tank (Armorhide / Danger) was changed as well). What's absolutely sad is that Family Dollar had a knockoff Valdigus (Ruination) in the correct colors. :-) Don't get fooled by the knockoffs! For more information on the extensive remolding of this piece, please see the RID section of the site (especially Zob's review).

Skybyte and the Predacons: almost no noticable change. Skybyte had some paint-apps changes, and the Predacons had chrome hue differences between the American and Japanese versions. (Primus forbid that anything be left alone.)

JRX (Trainbots): Clear vs Painted windows.

Black Convoy (Scourge): Originally a recolored G2 Lazer Prime. Pink vs red windows when BC was changed to Scourge for the USA market.

Brave Maximus: We're still waiting. :-) I suppose technically, since he was supposedly released as a lucky draw 'complete' set (with the Gasket/Grommit/Cog parts, etc), you might put him on List Two; however since he started as the American Fortress Maximus, then became the Japanese Grand Maximus, etc he belongs here. ;-) (Pics) It is interesting to note that the Master Sword associated with the original Japanese Fortress Maximus/Grand Maximus didn't come with the regular-release of Brave, but *was* included in the Fire Convoy giftset. :-) (Korean Version) It is also interesting to note that the Master Sword also *supposedly* came offered seperate as a 'lucky-draw' prize of only 20. (Pic) No confirmation on that last bit as of yet.

Towline and Skid-Z: Recycled Machine Wars molds...sigh. Plus the Jusco clear versions of each...

Spychangers: Recycled G2 Gobot molds (See the Autobot section for details.) Had fewer paint-apps from the American RID ones. Japan also saw a Jusco clear version of these, not to be confused with the American Kaybee clear releases. Heck, these things were reissued twice more, concurrent with Micron Legends toys (see below). More...

(See Also: Giftsets section for Valdigus, Buildking, JRX, Spychanger, and Crystal Giftset listings.)

(Note: Car-robots saw unique releases in Korea. See the Korean section for details.)

Reissues (Japan and Europe)

(See Also: Reissue Number Designations)

Reissues are an interesting can of worms. :-) One problem is, 'just before' and 'just after' don't necessarily apply in this case. These reissues are 15+ years later in Japan. (some argue that the 90's Classic re-releases in Europe should probably count as reissues, many of these are reissues of reissues. What fun. :-) (Pic)

Another interesting development is how these reissues are packaged. The initial reissue cars and jets were in 'collectors edition' we have E-Hobby exclusive boxes, Japanese vintage-style artwork and and Dreamwave art boxes, and of course Takara Tomy Encore boxes. Of course, with the demise of Dreamwave, I suppose we can't call them 'Dreamwave' boxes anymore anymore (take a look at the crappy Kup/Wheelie art...not Dreamwave at all). The fun continues.

A third item of interest is how these units have been changed mold-wise. I'll try to detail each one as information becomes available, but basically...we're looking at molds that have been tinkered with. Regular G1 and Euro-classics have (with minor-changes) all been relatively the same (barring manufacturer-stampings, and other details listed above). The reissues have undergone *numerous* changes. The reissues, as they hit America, have many of these same alterations (plus a few more, for saftey's sake). It's all going to be documented, one way or the other. :-)

Now that Takara has been bought out by Tomy (a shame, Takara lasted on it's own until 2005), the future of some reissues was uncertain. However, we have seen several of the previous reissued reissues reissued again, and a couple out of left field (Skylynx? WTF?).

Note that I've grouped these more or less in order of release (versus alphabetical). I may change that at some point, but frankly, this is more convenient for me. :-) When a new one gets released, I simply add it to the bottom.

To wrap up: Types of reissue japanese packaging
1) Collectors Edition Boxes
2) Dreamwave Artwork Boxes
3) Non-Dreamwave (Japanese Artwork) Boxes
4) E-Hobby Boxes
5) Takara/Tomy Logo Boxes (Encore Series)

God Ginrai

God Ginrai Giftset: An interesting piece. Both the toy, and the box are designed to mimic the original Japanese release of the item. The molding is nearly identical.

Ultra Magnus

Magnus / Shining Magnus / Diaclone-colored Magnus (which has also been called Movie Magnus): I'm not going to talk about this. Well, what did you expect for an answer? This fellow was taken off the last-release of the original Magnus. A number of items were changed, suprisingly (some reinforcement to delicate pieces on the trailer, and a remolding on the inner portions of the large fists). This unit was then modified (shorter smokestacks, longer missles) and re-released a year later as an American TRU exclusive. Please see the Ultra Magnus page for all those mold-change details. No sense me retyping it here. ;-)

Starscream / Skywarp / Thundercracker / Sunstorm

Starscream / Starscream (Black) / Starscream (Ghost) / Starscream (Dreamwave): What an interesting situation. The Japanese reissue Screamer was seemingly derived, mold-wise, from the last-release of the G1 Screamer (around the post-movie era; ridged-canopy, dual-tabbed fists, etc). What makes this nice compared to the USA reissue is that the missles are true-to-form...none of those goofy safety missles. One also has to appreciate a 'ghost' version of Starscream. :-) I'm a fan of translucent colored plastics (note that the all-clear version of ghost starscream is covered in the Lunchtime Specials section). Small mold-changes (wings, etc) are also documented in the jets section of the site. Note that the Dreamwave unit has changed color (lighter blue) and has modified fists; all the better to hold the optional Megatron gun accessory that he comes with. :-) (Pic 1 | Pic 2)

Skywarp / Thundercracker: Same molding as the reissue Starscream. Only difference is the coloring. These units were also reissued in the USA, also with TRU safety missles. Ugh. On the bright side, we got an E-Hobby exclusive Sunstorm, a recolor of this mold that has made some appearances in the Dreamwave comics as of late. :-) For a character that never appeared in a TV show (technically), he sure is popular...and now, in 2007, the Encore Starscream, with tampo nosecone symbol, and the Takara Tomy logo on the box. Wee.

Dirge / Thrust / Ramjet

Dirge / Thrust / Ramjet: Released as limited-edition collectors items (in order to test the collector's market) these have not seen a later Dreamwave box release like many of the others. In-fact, it seems they've been bypassed completely, and actually saw release in the states as TRU exclusives (well, Dirge anyways. We're expecting Ramjet at some time, perhaps as a Hasbro DTC (direct-to-consumer) item, ie off their website like Astrotrain.) Molding, with the obvious exception of the wings, is identical to the other jets that have seen a wider release (molding on the bodies and hands remains consistant through all the jets).

Ironhide / Ratchet

Ironhide / Ratchet: Released as limited-edition collectors items (in order to test the collector's market) these have not seen a later Dreamwave box release like many of the others, nor have they seen release in America at this time, making them highly desirable. However, in 2007, Takara/Tomy did an Encore reissue, with an E-Hobby followup of a black Dicalone homage recolor. (There's also a limited Green Ratchet released by ****.)

Grapple / Inferno / Road Hauler

Grapple / Inferno / Inferno (Dreamwave): a number of mold-changes. For starters, they borrowed a few elements from each mold of the toy and combined them for the reissue release (such as the two-holed shoulder assy from G2 Inferno, and the thicker headpegs from G1 Grapple). Like other units (Hoist and Trailbreaker come to mind) they streamlined similar parts to share as moldings. The guns are slightly thicker. A nice touch: the ladder assy ratchets now, and quite well :-) (Pic 1 | Pic 2 | Pic 3)

Also note the green recolor from E-Hobby called Road Hauler.

Sideswipe / Red Alert / Clamp Down / Deep Cover / Tigertrack

Sideswipe / Red Alert, Sideswipe / Red Alert (New Years), Sideswipe (Dreamwave) we'll be seeing a slew of the Lambo mold, with Black and Police Sideswipe (called Clamp Down and Deep Cover), and Yellow Sideswipe (called Tigertrack; not to be confused with the Diaclone version of yellow Sideswipe) showing up as new characters. The yellow, police, and black versions are inspired by Diaclone cars of similar look and design. More...

From Maz: "About the Black Sideswipe. Aside from the sticker differences, the two chest clips that go underneath the windshield in car mode have been remolded and are a slightly different shape, also the launcher is the prerub mold...which is funny because strangely, the original black Diaclone Sideswipe had a second mold launcher like Red Alert." One difference that seems apparent on all these reissue Swipes, the silver bit on the head extends back more than on the originals, where the silver paint was only a small bit. Also note the tampo-stamped (painted) portions of Sideswipe, in-place of where some of the stickers used to go. :-) Also note that the diecast was changed, and is defective in some cases. Note that Sideswipe himself was not released in American TRU stores; rather, he saw a limited release in Canada. A year later, the bulk of these (apparently sitting in a warehouse when TRU cancelled the classics reissue line) were dumped at Kaybee toy store outlets...for 9 bucks each (it would have been 24 at TRU, and it was 50 to import it from Canada). Gotta love the global marketplace.

Hoist / Trailbreaker

Hoist / Trailbreaker: Released as limited-edition collectors items (in order to test the collector's market) these have not seen a later Dreamwave box release like many of the others. Molding has been altered from the late-issue release of these figures. What I find immensely interesting is how they streamlined these two molds, ie the arm-molding is now consistant between the units (versus one having small-mounts, and the other large for example). For further details, see the Autobot section. Note that only Hoist has been released in the USA at this time, so Trailbreaker remains elusive, and desirable.

Optimus Prime (Convoy)

Convoy / Black Convoy (Jafcon) / New Years Convoy / Gold Convoy (Prize Version) / Convoy (Dreamwave): Most of the items in this catagory are covered (in obscene detail) on the Prime page, under the 'world' section. Items of note on the reissue include the enlarged front wheelhubs (for use in recycling the cab mold for the magnus reissue) as well as the recycling of the G2 trailer mold. Unlike the US reissue (See: Prime.), these Primes maintain their longer smokestacks. In addition, the New Year's Convoy came with a mousepad, and a metal-matrix (as well as a second gun, the original 'bloated' version, and an Action Master Convoy figure...very well-equipped). The Dreameave issue came with a battle axe (reminding us of the battle on Sherman Dam in MTMTE). Of note: in 2006, a Chinese bootleg of the Black Convoy was released (in American-esque packaging). While berefit of stickers on the trailer, someone could rip you off, so please make sure to ask about copystamp and plastic quality. In 2007, Takara Tomy did an Encore reissue of Prime (with tampo arm symbols).

Jazz / Stepper

Meister (Jazz) / Stepper: Jazz is a modified version of the G2 Jazz mold, most notably the rear undercarrage (enlarged nubs, tabless chrome feet) as well as the handgun (shorter barrel) and the rear-windows (reinforced top wedge). However, they went back to G1 molding for the missles, and launcher (the US-reissue has a new launcher, and longer missles, and an unchromed gun). Later reissues of Dreamwave (call it, 'Version 2') also apparently incorporate the Hasbro-reissue modified windows (extra nub on the front, and a reinforced lip on the bottom). Hellopike also adds: "The two part launcher is a hybrid of the original Japanese launcher and the USA reissue launcher. 1): Its got a notched missile and launcher hole. 2): Its back shape is shaped like the original launcher. 3): The white trigger is shaped as the USA reissue version NOT like the Japanese/original version. 4): It splits in two like the new us reissue version." (Pic of V2 Launcher) More... There is also a limited-edition release of the first molding of this figure, called Gold Jazz, which is made in-homage to the Diaclone Campaign Cars of old. Sadly, Gold Jazz suffers from easily-flaked paint (better to leave him in the package). Note that there is a further reissue of the later-series of Jazz mold, modified to be a reissue of Targetmaster Stepper. They actually went back a few steps in molding to accomodate the TM components, but there are still some reissue components on this one, so consider it a hybrid of old, new, and custom reissue parts. ;-) More.... In 2008, Takara/Tomy reissued Jazz in the Encore line.

Prowl / Bluestreak / Smokescreen

Prowl, Bluestreak, and Smokescreen: The upshot of owning these is the nice packaging, and the fact that they actually got the working launchers and the chrome missles, versus the American reissues, which are getting those stupid unchromed 'safety' missles, and a neutered launcher (this complaint is a recurring theme throughout the section). Anime Streak is nearly identical to the last-issue G1 run, with the exception of the diecast rear-end (new triangle-bracket). In addition to mold-changes and copyright, a good way to tell the new one from the Diaclone version is the fact that the black paint goes all the across the roof of the vintage one, while the reissue one is clear. Prowl is...interesting. Like his Bluestreak cousin, Prowl came with the newly-designed diecast back-end, (the triangle bracket), new doortabs, as well as a thickened-bumper. Also of note is the fact that his gun is now clear-plastic under the chrome (versus the colored-plastic of the original versions). Smokescreen is slightly retooled compared to his brothers, in that you have the different front air dam, and the window-spoilers on the back. Barring that, all else is consistant (triangle-diecast, weapons, etc). A further note on reissued releases: Anime Bluestreak is made in-homage to the diaclone black-hooded Bluestreak (See: Pre-Transformers), while Chromestreak is made in-homage to the Campaign cars of old (like Diaclone Fairlady Z Racing type here). Sadly, Chromestreak suffers from easily-flaked paint (better to leave him in the package).

Tracks / Skids / Crosscut / Roadrage

Tracks / Skids: Skids-removal of some small indents in the hips; shape of the sunroof is rounded vs straight. Also of interest on these two units is the limited reissue/recolors of Silver Skids and Red Tracks (called crosscut/roadrage). Nice units, and an excellent homage to the diaclone-units that they were modeled after (for example, the addition of the little scooter. Note that these units are in homage to, and should not be confused *with*, the red Corvette Stingray and the original Honda City R/Honda City Turbo). The reissue Black Tracks was a limited to 314. :-) more....The reissue Tracks can no longer open his sunroof smoothly (not mine, anyways...I nearly broke it trying. It's tight). It's interesting to note that mold-wise, this toys is most identical to its vintage counterpart. All other toys in this section have been modified...extensively :-)

Megatron / Megaplex

Megatron / Megatron (Black) / Megatron (Dreamwave) / Megaplex (E-Hobby): What an interesting selection of goodies. :-) Each of these reissue versions comes with a full range of parts and accessories not available on the standard Megatron releases in *any* country. For example, special edition and Pre-TF toys came either with a sword and firing bullets, or with all the extentions (silencer, stock, etc). The special reisues got eveything, and then some. :-) Heck, the later E-Hobby and Dreamwave reissues even got some custom parts (colored mace accessory). More... It is interesting to note that, for some odd reason, the 16S fusion cannon is glued fused piece (heheh...a fused fusion cannon) instead of the normal 3 easily-seperable pieces in the original run. In addition...depending on which mold they used for Megatron, you can have various variants in the parts and accessories...for example, the silver guns (See: Decepticons). In the words of Defensis: "Original 16-Special Megatron: 5 holes, like the one on the right of the pic. 16-S Black Megatron: 5 holes, ditto. Collection 6 Megatron: 5 holes, ditto. Megaplex: 4 holes--the fifth, NEAREST to the back of the gun, is filled in. (Not like the 4-hole version in the pic, where the hole at the opposite end of the line of 5 is filled.)" (Pic) For more Megatron information, from the Pre-TF molding to today, see the upcoming Megatron page. In 2007, Takara/Tomy did an Encore reissue of Megatron.


Sixshot / Sixshot (Black) / Sixshot (Clear): I half-expected this one to be re-released in the states. I'm surprised it hasn't been. I suppose lack of popularity? Note that the clear-versions can't be accounted for at this time, and as-such will be listed in the Lunchtime Specials section. The black one was supposed to be a prize-item, limited to ten. However, at the time of this writing, more Black Sixshots have been let out the back door (just like the 314 black Tracks that were limited to a run of 300, eh? :-) So take it with a grain of salt.

Rodimus Prime

Rodimus Prime: This unit is identical to the reissue Rodimus Prime in the USA. (See the Autobot section for details.) Also of interest is this black sample, which may have been a testshot, Lunchtime Special, or a possible prize giveaway. The owner/seller of said piece is not being completely forthcoming. :-) And speaking of cool things, in the Micron Legends section, you'll see this prize-version of the Rodimus mold, called Primus: yep, it's a gold chrome version. Yay. :-)

Hot Rod / Targetmaster Hot Rod

Hot Rod / Hot Rod (Black) / Hot Rod (Clear) / Hot Rod (Targetmaster): An original Targetmaster Hot Rod mold was retooled towards an original one for this reissue (note that the identical reissue molding showed up as a reissue in the USA). And of course, Japan got the cool black and clear versions that the USA didn't. ;-) The reissue TM version of the mold is more like a reverse-engineered reissue regular version mold, as they modified the reissue molding *back* into a TM version (which was modified from the molding that was modified from the original which was modified from the...well, you get the idea). All this jumping around, and none of the parts fit. I love it. More...


Keychain Minibots: The first reissue minibots in Japan were the keychain versions, sold in places like 7-11 (note the Black Chase Versions of these reissues. Mold-wise, they are functionally identical to the Fun4All moldings that were released on two seperate occasions in the USA. More...

Reissue Minibots 6 Pack: Bumblebee, Gears, Cosmos, Powerglide, Huffer, and Warpath have all been reissued in Japan, and *not* as keychains. It is interesting to notethat this is Bumblebee's second reissue, and that in this set he has a remolded face (an 'anime' version, if you prefer). Warpath's mold has been cleaned up quite a bit, fixing all the scoring that appeared on previous units. Huffer and ** have updated China stampings; one wonders if this is because they were next to be released as keychains before the idea was scrapped. Interestingly, Huffer has a further mold-change: Reinforcement nubs on the back underside of his tabs. (Pic) The colors on Powerglide are lighter; actually, it looks to be the same color red as the Greek version. Of further interest are the recolored versions, which sport some different allegiences...and have the names for former Tonka Gobots. :-) The fun continues.

Note: For further information on minibots, please see the Minibots Page.

(See Also: Kup and Wheelie, below.)

Soundwave / Soundblaster / Casettes

Soundwave and Soundblaster: The dreamwave Soundwave reissue has hit, and is best compared in-design to the Japanese Soundblaster, which is itself a retooling of the later-release G1 Soundwave. The door-latch, the hollow-hands, etc available previously on Soundwave were incorporated into Soundblaster, with the mold-change of buttons sticking further-out, a thicker tape-door, exposed hinge, etc. The reissue is actually a near-copy of the Soundblaster mold; having the further-out buttons, and the exposed hinge. However, the reissue door is thin again, harkening back to the late-G1 release. (Pic) Further notes: The vents on Laserbeak's guns are redrawn, looking more like vintage Buzzsaw's guns than the ones originally available for Frenzy. Maz continues: "I found that the MC Cassetteman (and it's KO) had triangular play/rec buttons that were separate from the middle chrome buttons and the USA TF Soundwave was the same. All of them had the intrernal tape hinge mechanism too. The Japanese TF Soundwave, and Soundblaster and the reissue Soundwave appear to have trapezium shaped play/rec buttons which ARE attached to the middle chrome buttons under his tape door. These all have the external tape door mechanism, what Fred calls 'hooked tape door'. The VSY Soundwaves I've seen recently appear to be more like the USA Soundwave." Note that they further reissued this figure in the Dreamwave series as Soundblaster. Same molding, but they brought back the double tape door (and of-course, gave us Buzzsaw and Ravage as cassettes). With the exception of an updated copyright stamp (China instead of Japan) and an updated (yet off-colored) set of stickers, you could almost pawn this off as the real thing. ;-) The cassette from reissue Soundwave is recolored into Buzzsaw for this release (note the updated head line molding; I've seen versions of Soundblaster with and without the Head-ridge. I'm pretty sure one of these is a substitution, but until I can find further proof...). This unit also comes with Ravage. :-) A nice update. Smooth and crisp. The weapons fit snugly on this version. One further note: The tapes from this set were recolored into the E-Hobby exclusive Cobalt Sentry, which is in-homage to some Diaclone cassettes from back in the day. There is a further recolor of the cassettes, in a giftset (released during the Kissplay timeframe) consisting of ****.

Japanese, USA, and Pre-TF Sound Button Comparisons

Reissue Tapes | Reissue Soundwave and Soundblaster (Inserts)

Vintage vs Reissue Soundblaster: Boxed | Loose


Astrotrain (White) / Astrotrain (Prototype): This reissue is done in homage to the original white Astrotrain. Although they are similar in color, they are not alike in molding. The reissue is taken off of the latest release of the G1 molding; a snub-wing, simple-foot pattern (see: Decepticons). The gun is stamped five. The E-Hobby version is a nice touch; colored to look like the prototype in the catalogs. ;-) This was not released in American stores, but did finally see reissue as a Hasbro DTC (direct to consumer) off their website. (Presumably because this and Sideswipe were the last ones along the line when TRU axed the classics reissues from their stores.)


Reissue Landcross: The vintage Landcross is in the catagory of Transformers that saw release in both Japan and China. The copyright changed from Taiwan (to China) as a vintage toy, and was remade from this molding for the reissue (just like the reissue Micro 6 Teams). The copyright still reads 1990 China, but now the figures have tampo-stamped symbols, as well as additional paint-apps. There is also a sticker change on the reissue. Whereas the stickers used to be gold, now they are yellow. There is also a black chase variant of the Landcross members available.

Hound / Detrius

Hound: A number of small changes made to the figure, including the gastank size, spare-tire (both were shrunk down for the reissue,for example), and of-course the fit of most of the parts (an actual improvement, surprisingly). More... In-addition, this unit was recolored into the E-Hobby exclusive Detrius, the second officially recognised 'Junkion' in TF toy history. (The first one being Wreck-Gar, of course.)

Insecticons / Insecticon Clone Army

Reissue Insecticons / Reissue Clone Army Insecticons: A number of minor changes from the originals, most notably on Bombshell (combined the best of both variants on the stinger, reinforced wheelhubs, and has a new leg-locking mechanism) and Kickback (new antennas, and now the wingtips are sharp instead of saftey-balled). Schrapnel had a wheel modification, and of-course this set came with pink rubber energon cubes. In-addition, this set saw a recolor (in a Diaclone theme) as red and green 'clones'. (How festive!) More...

Blitzwing / Overcharge

Blitzwing: next out of the gate. :-) There is also an E-Hobby exclusive of this mold (in Diaclone colors) and called Overcharge (appropriate, considering how much we have to pay for these darn things). Interestingly, while the unit takes the smooth-sword, complex-bolt pattern molding (see Decepticons), the unit has a major change in the tab holding the barrel on. There is no longer a way to take the barrel off of the figure. Apparently, they screw the bottom on with this new square tab (versus the egg-shaped tab on previous designs), screw the bottom down, then screw the top of the turret together. Very odd. (Pic)


Predaking: Here's a beast for the ages. :-) Like the reissue God Ginrai, the box has been styled to reflect the original Japanese giftset version. While the unit has metal, it retains the plastic version weapons, and went through a number of minor changes of molding, most notably on Divebomb and Headstrong. More...

Perceptor / Magnificus

Perceptor: In-process. This one may be in-process for a while too, as no-one in our group likes this mold enough to compare it to the original. Sadly, this means me, too. :-) So please feel free to donate information, especially on how the scope compares to the original versions. Note that this unit was recolored byt E-Hobby into Magnificus, as homage to the Diaclone black Perceptor (Matgnififus comes packaed with an exclusive microman character as well, who can operate the 4th tank mode if you want.) (Pic)

Kup / Wheelie

Kup and Wheelie: Well, they've gone and done it. The most horrible tf of all time has been exhumed from wherever they bury such things. The unholy Wheelie has returned, and he's as ghastly as ever. Mo mold-changes from immediate observation (excepting coopystamp, of course). As for Kup...well, he suffers from the Hot Rod mold-reversal disease. He's the Targetmaster version of the mold, however he has metal and rubber wheels/tires (if you recall, the original Kup had metal/rubber tires and rims; that was transitioned to plastic, which was on the first TM version). I've yet to examine the TM partner for any changes.

Star Convoy

Star Convoy: In-process.

Blaster / Twincast / Cassettes

Blaster / Twincast: In-process.

Lazer Convoy / Ultra Magnus

Lazer Convoy/Ultra Magnus: In-process.

Sky Lynx

Encore Takara/Tomy reissue Sky Lynx: In-process.

Europe: Rook

Rook is a recolored Windcharger keychain for Euro Botcon 2002. More...

(See Also: Minibots)

(See Also: Botcon)

It's rather interesting that many of the standard Takara reissues became available as TRU exclusive Hasbro reissues; albeit with modifications, notably in the smokestacks, missles, launchers...well, basically mold-changes. (See the Autobot and Decepticon sections for details.) Gotta love the US-based child-safety laws. Yeesh. Because of all this foolishness, we have scores of things to document. Jazz alone has 2 versions within G1, then the G2 version, then the Classic, the Japanese reissue, and now the even further-changed USA reissue. That's one toy. Imagine documenting the others...oh wait, we do. :-)

(See Also: Lunchtime Specials.)

Micron Legends

The Japanese version of America's Armada series.

(Note: Only the units that had some kind of mold/color change are hyperlinked/described here. Otherwise, they're not listed. :-)


Catalog of Recolors | Mini-Cons with CDs

MM-07 - Air Defense Micron Team X-Dimension - Fire Saber
MM-08 - Land Military Micron Team X-Dimension
MM-09 - Destruction Micron Team X-Dimension
MM-10 - Race Micron Team X-Dimension - Crystaltector
MM-12 - Air Military Micron Team X-Dimenson
MM-14 - Space Micron Team X-Dimension
MM-15 - Sea Micron Team Sail, Knot, Float
MM-17 - Air Assault Micron Team Mad, Shade, Jack (Dark Saber)
MM-18 - Sea Micron Team X-Dimension
MM-19 - Adventure Micron Team X-Dimension
MM-21 - Emergency Micron Team X-Dimension

** - Clear Blue Energized Air Defense Team w/ Opening Theme CD Set
** - Super Anime Street Action Team w/ Closing Theme CD Set

** - Land Military Team Ltd Color - ToysRUs Japan Exclusives
** - Destruction Team Ltd Color - Ito Yokado Exclusives
** - Overdrive Team - NGW Hobby Festival & Ito Yokado Exclusives
** - Destruction Team White - TF Station Exclusives
** - Space Galaxy Destruction Team - Jusco Exclusives
** - Supermode Prime - TV Boy Magazine Exclusive

** - Street Stunt Team: Redline, Flatout, Sabo - w/ DVD Volume 1

** - Top Gear of Speed Chaser Team [Magna-Wing] - w/ DVD Volume 2
** - Midship of Speed Chaser Team [Magna-Wing] - w/ DVD Volume 3
** - Tail-Light of Speed Chaser Team [Magna-Wing] - w/ DVD Volume 4

** - Falcia of Sonic Assault Team - w/ DVD Volume 5
** - Combusta of Sonic Assault Team - w/ DVD Volume 6
** - Twirl of Sonic Assault Team - w/ DVD Volume 7

** - Freeboot of Aqua Raider Team - w/ DVD Volume 8
** - Breach of Aqua Raider Team - w/ DVD Volume 9
** - Sunburn of Aqua Raider Team - w/ DVD Volume 10

** - Kingbolt of Hazard Team - w/ DVD Volume 11
** - Impulse of Hazard Team - w/ DVD Volume 12
** - Quench of Hazard Team - w/ DVD Volume 13

** - Micron Booster ver. 0 Rod [Red Prime] - TF Station Exclusive
** - Micron Booster ver. 0 Atlas [Blue Prime] - TF Station Exclusive
** - Micron Booster ver. 0 Air Defense Team - TF Station Exclusive
** - Micron Booster ver. 0 Race Team - TF Station Exclusive


Micron Boosters Series 1 and 2 are listed in the Superlink series.

*The MM-17 Air Assault Team [Dark Saber] is the same as that which comes with Rampage in the MS-08 set in that they have the clear plastic that the Armada Air Assault Team lacks. (Pic)

Crazy-Steve adds: "The Micron Legend series uses metal pins to hold the arms in-place, unlike Armada, which still uses the plastic-joint design." (Pic 1 | Pic 2)

*The Space Galaxy edition Destruction Team is by far the rarest of Microns, save perhaps Black Barrel and Gold Prime (who come with Black Megatron and Gold Supermode Convoy, respectively). ONE Team MEMBER is/was packaged IN THE BOX with MC-01 Supermode Convoy. Yes, that means you have/had to buy THREE Supermode Convoys, MINIMUM, to get the full team. Yes, that's the worst marketing tactic EVER.

*Micron Densetsu's Night Attack (TRU Japan exclusive) and Road Assault (Ito Yokado exclusive) Teams differ in no way (in terms of colorschemes) from Armada's versions of same.

*The Micron Booster ver. 0 Race and Air Defense Teams had 'slight' metallic colors as their main differences from the original Race and Air Defense Teams.

Optimus Prime (Convoy)

Battle Pants Prime: The Micron Legends version's mold was updated from the Armada version (original Armada version has non-articulated shoulders, which was later changed). Coloring has been changed as well--instead of gold supermode highlights, he has yellow. There is also the Lucky Draw version (called Gold Supermode Convoy w/Gold Prime), limited to 5 units. (Pic 1 | Pic 2) In addition, the recolor Micron Legends Convoy included in the Magna Convoy DX set sports different shades of black compared to our Powerlinx Optimus Prime (both on robot and trailer) and has different paint apps in the combined mode. (Pic 1 | Pic 2)

Supercon Prime: Little to no difference, considering the USA had 3 different versions. ;-) However, there were black (different black from our Nemesis Prime version) and clear versions of this toy. Scourge w/Sweep and Crystal STD Convoy w/Spark Surge are limited to 5000 units.

Ultra Magnus (Overload)

Ultra Magnus (Overload): Slight paint-apps differences between our red version and theirs, most notibly in the face (ours is blue, theirs is silver). They also had a couple of versions we didn't, including Ice Ultra Magnus w/Ice Magnus (a blue redeco, limited to 100 units) and of-course the Crystal Magnus, available in the MagnaConvoy DX Giftset. It is interesting to note that the american Energon series got a blue Overload later on...called Ultra Magnus. :-) However, ours is dark blue, Micron Densetsu Ice Magnus is a rather light blue. Don't get me started on the remold for OTFCC. ;-) An interesting note: Japan had a 'USA edition' Magnus that sported a corrected sticker on the back of the package (figure came with Space Team, not the speed team pictured). They did correct the package error for the Euro-edition (but all USA packages have the error, and no sticker). (Pic)


Starscream: Plastic is now light-gray. The paint apps are completely different as well (yellow paint has been changed to gold, canopy has a metallic sheen, etc).

Argus notes: "Look what is going on with the nosecones!"

He's right. No child-safety here. The canopy flies straight as an arrow, ready to poke out unsuspecting eyes. :-) Same applies to all other colors of this mold, apparently. (Pic)


Hotshot: Japan's version got a cheddar-yellow instead of canary-yellow. In addition, he has more paint-apps (logo, and codpiece), and...did I mention his fist lights up? Man, we got ripped off...ours doesn't do a thing. Same with their Powerlinx version. Better equipped than ours. Note the grey paint is only on the face, not the forehead. And they got the light again. Speaking of lights, the headlights of theirs are a slightly different color, too. (Pic)


Blurr: Paint-apps changes and color-changes on the body, and the plastic color on the windows/headlights are different as well. (Pic 2)


Hoist: Now here's an interesting change. The orange parts are red, the brown parts are grey, and...the autobot symbol is outlined vs solid. :-) Neet-o.


Thrust: in-addition to having their own green and brown ones like ours, Japan had a special 'USA' edition in red (our package style, and the red color that matched our card-art, but *we* didn't get it.) :-) All we got was green and brown. Sigh.

Red Alert

Red Alert: Micron Legend Ratchet Supermode - MASSIVE changes, both paint and mold. On Red Alert, the three indentations on his chest where "RESCUE" starts have a gridwork molded in them. On Ratchet, these indentations are present, but are smooth inside. Ratchet is missing the "RESCUE". His large headlights are blue instead of silver. Small headlights are red instead of orange. Right hand and band around left wrist are painted metallic red versus unpainted on Red Alert. Red Alert has his "cheeks" painted white, versus unpainted on Ratchet. Red Alert's sirens are only painted on top, versus completely painted for Ratchet. American Longarm has unpainted front windows, versus silver on Japanese Longarm. (Editor's Note: A final run of powerlinx Red Alert in the USA did add the gridwork, though the only place it's been found is at KB...the rest of the changes are unique to the Japanese version.)


Jetfire: The Powerlinx version (labeled as a 'USA edition') differed from ours in that the head-plastic is of a darker color than the standard Armada version. (Pic) In addition, a special 'lucky draw' mekki version was available (in quantities of 3, 5, or 20, depending on who you believe.) (Pic 1 | Pic 2 | Pic 3)


Wheeljack: Now called Rampage. In addition to the different paintapps (most noticable on the hood), the giftset version of this unit comes with a crossover Air Assult Team...the clear plastic of the Air Defense team mold, but the purple and gold air-assult paintapps.

Megatron / Galvatron

Megatron: Outline symbol compared to our solid symbol. In addition to the Galvatron version (again, solid vs outline symbol, and deeper pink color), there is also the black limited-edition version. (Pic) Limited to 100 units. It is interesting to note how similar in concept this is to the OTFCC 04 Megazarak exclusive...


Clear Green Unicron. Limited to 10. Named 'Shining Unicron'. Basically a representation of when all the Mini-Cons combined into an energy-esque version of the dark god (in the Armada cartoon) and squared off with him. (Pic)


Primus: Gold chrome version of the Rodimus mold. Prize version like Unicron (above).


Shockwave (Tidalwave): Recolored to be more show-accurate. (Ours is green instead of purple.)

(See Also: Micron Legends Giftsets)


The Japanese version of America's Energon series.

(Note: If there are mold/color changes in the line, they will be hyperlinked/described. Otherwise, as in the Micron legends section above, I've simply deleted them. :-) That being said, I could use some variant pics of the unpic'd ones below. Help!

SC-01 - Grand Convoy - Chromed, faceplate, no sounds/lights. Note the difference in parts color.

SC-02 - Hot Shot - Different paintapps, no black details.

SC-03 - Inferno - Red and gray plastics darker.

SC-04 - Road Buster (Ironhide)

SC-05 - Skyfire (Jetfire) - No electronics, red vs orange plastic weapons.

SC-06 - Blast Arm (Strongarm)

SC-07 - Air Glide (Sky Blast) - All four autobot sigils painted.

SC-08 - Energon Saber Team: Pulse, Laser, Beam (Wreckage, Skyboom, Scattor)

SC-09 - Cliffjumper: Hopper, Charge, Runway (Grindor, High Wire, Sureshock) - Orange paint now red.

SC-10 - Rodimus Convoy (Rodimus) - Gold flames on spoilers, deeper colors.

SC-11 - Red Alert (Prowl) - Darker grey plastic on legs.

SC-12 - Signal Flare - Lighter blue and lighter brown.

SC-13 - SL Grand Convoy (Optimus Prime)

SC-14 - Kicker (Regular Version)

SC-15 - Landmine

SC-16 - Aerial (Arcee) Note the paint and weapons-change. Chrome-face Aerial?

SC-17 - Wing Saber (Wing Saber) - Paint apps changes, white vs none on shoulders.

SC-18 - Overdrive (Cliffjumper)

SC-19 Wheeljack (Downshift) - Different colors on legs; grey instead of green.

SC-20 - Sprung (Bulkhead)

SC-21 - Inferno Supermode Volt (Roadblock)

SC-22 - Omega Supreme

SC-23 - Hot Shot Supermode Fire w/Magenta Energy Saw - Different plastic, painted (not molded) silver.

SC-24 - Road Buster Supermode Wild w/Orange Energy Axe.

SC-25 - Skyfire Supermode Sonic w/Red Energy Spear.

SC-26 - Superion: Afterburner, Airraider, Firebolt, Skydive, Slingshot - Mucho paintapps changes.

SD-01 - Nightscream (Starscream) - Lighter grey plastic, same as the Armada version.

SD-02 - Ironhide (Demolishor) - Nearly identical to the later-issue KB exclusive version.

SD-03 - Sandstorm (Cyclonus) - Nearly identical to the later-issue KB exclusive version.

SD-04 - Shockwave (Tidal Wave)

SD-05 - Mega Zarak (Scorponok) - Beautiful compared to in-place of orange plastic.

SD-06 - Command Jaguar (Battle Ravage) - Note the different color of the figure, and the weapons.

SD-07 - Galvatron (Megatron) - Smaller than USA edition. Now released at TRU.

SD-08 - Shadowhawk (Divebomb) - Identical to ours.

SD-09 - Command Jaguar Desert Type

SD-10 - Snow Storm (Snow Cat: Cyclonus II)

SD-11 - Iron Tread (Demolishor II)

SD-12 - Dinobot (Cruellock)

SD-13 - Shadowhawk - Marine Type - Nice blue color.

SD-14 - Laserwave (Shockblast) - Different plastic color on feet, note paint apps on treads. (Pic)

SD-15 - Dark Fleet (Mirage) - Blue compared to our yellow version.

SD-16 - Chrome Horn (Insecticon) - Green vs gold energon weaponry.

SD-17 - Dinobot Magma-Type (Doomlock)

SD-18 - Chrome Horn Heat Type (Formerly Forest Type) - Sigh.

SD-19 - Nightscream Supermode Rebirth w/Yellow Energy Drill Cannon - Nice recolor.

SD-20 - Galvatron Supermode General w/Purple Energy Blade - Small version purple recolor.

SD-21 - Bruticus: Onslaught, Swindle, Vortex, Blast Off, Brawl

EX-01 - Buildron: Crane, Longhaul, Scavenger, Bonecrusher, Scrapper - Reportedly a TRU Japan exclusive, and the last toy in the SuperLink line.

SS-01 - Super Link Hot Shot [& Inferno]

SS-02 - Super Link Road Buster [& Skyfire]

Anniversary Set - SL Convoy & Kicker w/E-Saber & D-sword - Chrome Kicker version. Note that the Japanese Superlink STD Convoy has sparkly/pearlescent plastic and paint on the cab front, whereas the American Energon TRU Optimus Prime has plain plastic and paint. No Sparklies. ** - Booster ver. 1 (Sea Team) Hover, Mire, Solar

** - Booster ver. 1 (Blizzard Saber Team) Beacon, Quantum, Lens

**- Booster ver. 1 (Adventure Team) Torque, Crunch, Spoil

** - Booster ver. 1 Thyristor

** - Booster ver. 1 Chrome

** - Booster ver. 1 Synapse

** - Micron Booster ver. 2 Frenzy Brake, Damper, Filter (Pink)

** - Micron Booster ver. 2 (Air Military Team) Blitz, Effect, Seeker

** - Micron Booster ver. 2 (Emergency Team) Cluster, Groove, Rotor

** - Micron Booster ver. 2 Processor - Orange Thunderclash

** - Micron Booster ver. 2 Triac - Purple Thunderclash

** - Micron Booster ver. 2 Saber - Metallic Blue Thunderclash

Store exclusive figures:

** - Windcharger Axel, Throttle, Screw - Toys R Us Japan Exclusive Clear version of E-Perceptor.

EX-01 - Buildron: Crane, Longhaul Scavenger, Bonecrusher, Scrapper - Reportedly a TRU Japan exclusive, and the last toy in the Superlink line.

I find it entertaining that the Energon Perceptor mold (in Japan) is called Cliffjumper...then an exclusive recolor is called Windcharger...if this keeps up, we'll end up with one called Hubcap, or God forbid Wheelie. :-) And on Windcharger, Defensis writes: "Toys R Us Japan. One team member at a time, with purchase, and hooo man, the final unit of the trio is/was a doozy in those terms...only available with the purchase of Omega Supreme. Fusion cannon to my head, I'd hazard TRU Japan was leery about having the huge bugger stay on shelves for any length of time. (All that stuff I've heard about Japanese collectors not being so enamored of huge and expensive (mostly huge) toys. Space concerns. LIVING SPACE concerns..."

Speaking of interesting...Slugslinger is being marketed in Japan as a 'USA exclusive' figure. Hmmm...

Another interesting tidbit: Our Kicker is a completely different mold than the Japanese Superlink Kicker. Theirs is based off a Microman design, while ours is decidedly more GiJoe figure-like... (Comparison Pic)

Store exclusive weapons, so far:


Axes | Spears

How they came packaged with figures.

Energy Spear  Royal Clear Edition  Posful Exclusive

Energy Spear  Corona Flame Edition  Jusco Exclusive

Energy Axe  Aquamarine Edition  Toys R Us Japan Exclusive

Energy Axe  Black Hole Edition  Ito Yokado Exclusive

Energy Spear  Lightning Yellow Edition  Toys R Us Japan Exclusive

Energy Spear  Rodeo Magenta Editon  Ito Yokado Exclusive

Energy Axe  Violet Cluster Edition  Jusco Exclusive

Energy Axe  Natural Green Edition  Hello-Mac Exclusive

Energy Spear  ??? Edition  TV Magazine Superlink
Club Exclusive

Energy Axe  ??? Edition  TV Magazine Superlink
Club Exclusive

The TV Magazine SL Club units have their (lame) edition names inserted in there, now.

Energy Blade &
Energy Star

  Energy Laden Overdrive Edition  Gamers Exclusive

Energy Blade &
Energy Star

  Night Phantom Edition

Energy Cutter &
Energy Star

  Daylight Attack Edition

Lucky Limited Red Megatron - TV Magazine, limited to 50.

Lucky Limited Gold Grand Convoy - ?? prize, limited to ??

Black Rodimus Convoy, Fire SL Grand Convoy - Normally a set, can be purchased seperately. (Pic)

Gold SL Grand Convoy

Silver Rodimus Convoy

Gold Rodimus Convoy

Energon Kicker (Eed)


The Japanese version of America's Alternator series, release concurrently with Superlink.

The short version: These are superior to the American versions. :-) Well, they're heavier, at least. Unlike Hasbro's all-plastic versions, the Japanese ones are made with many diecast components. That's...pretty much it. It's a huge change, I'll grant you, but hey, at least the colors and paint apps are the same. :-) OK, that's not true, either. Please see the Alternators section for additional information.

It's interesting to note that 'American' car molds (mustang) always have right steer in Japan, while Japanese model cars (Hondas, subarus) have the steering wheel on the right side...except when they're converted from Binaltech to alt, at which point the steering wheels go onto the left. Nice touch. Something only a true lover of both versions would know: even the material used to make the steering wheel (between Binaltech an Alternator versions) changes on many of the vehicles. :-) Mold changes and material changes. Gotta love it.

Masterpiece Optimus Prime

I consider him to be part of the series. Takara's version had longer smokestacks compared to Hasbro, which has smaller stacks, and painted battle-damage. This version comes with a grey gun (USAa version had both black and grey guns). More details on this will be covered on the Prime page, so go there. :-) Oh yea...there's also a gold Prize version of him, too. ;-) There was a Dodge Ram created and scheduled to be Ginrai, but after the merger of Takara with Tomy, the plans for Binaltech Ginrai have been put on-hold. (The American Alternators Prime is still on schedule.)

Smokestacks | Clean vs Battle Damage | Gold Prize Version

Smokescreen / Silverstreak / Smokescreen GT / Red Alert

Smokescreen comes in two versions: #7, and #8. This essentially refers to the number change on the doors. The 7 car is considered to be the shortpacked version. Differences include:

          - Different license plates ("S40WRT" for the "#7", "S30WRT" for the "#8" version).
          - Different driver names on the rear side windows ("Solberg" and "Mills" for the "#7", "M?kinen" and "Lindstr?m" for "#8")
          - The "#7" version also has a little "cartoon pig" head painted on the side mirrors which the "#8" version is lacking.

A retooled, silver version of this mold has been released as Silverstreak; shorter spoiler, different rims, front lisence plate, etc. :-) Differences with Smokescreen include (aside from the new paintjob and the different license plate):

          - New hubcaps, larger side mirrors.
          - A remolded front bumper including a license plate.
          - A remolded hood with less "vents".
          - A missing camera mount on the roof, slightly remolded shoulders.
          - An entirely new head sculp.

Smokescreen vs Silverstreak | Front End | Spoilers and Guns | Rims

Smokescreen GT: A further redeco and retooling of the original mold; comes as the number 1 and 2 cars. :-) (BT-07 in Japan), US release unclear. Differences with BT-01 Smokescreen:

          - New hubcaps, an additional roof vent, remolded bumper, new sponsor decals.
          - Additional black paint on the rear spoiler and an all-new shoulder launcher for the robot.
          - Variations: "#1" and "#2" version differences include:
          - Different driver numbers ("#1" and "#2") on the doors, on the roof and on the rear side windows.
          - Different driver names on the rear side windows ("Solberg" for "#1", "Horvonen" for "#2").
          - Different license plates.
          - The "cartoon pig" head painted on the side of "#1", not present on "#2".

Earlier rumors claimed there would also be "#7" and "#8" versions, which is most probably due to a misunderstanding. One final piece of the puzzle; Takara started doing a further subline of these toys, called BTA (or Binaltech: Asterisk) (after thought would be more like it). In this vein, we got the smokes mold recolord, and slightly retooled, so that Smokescreen becomes Red Alert. Changes include the use of the rooflights from the Prowl mold, a spoiler-change, and a slight head-change; the 'chinstrap' on the head of Alert was removed.

Smokescreen and Silverstreak vs Smokescreen GT and BTA Alert | Alert Head-Mold Change

So bear with me: Smokescreen 7, Smokescreen 8, Silverstreak, Smokescreen 1, Smokescreen 2, BTA Alert. :-) I think we have them all covered...except that America got an exclusive black recolor of this mold called Richochet (in Stepper colors).

Sideswipe / Dead End

Sideswipe: Or Lambor, if you prefer. A nice piece, but modified by most collectors to transform differently. There is no painted blackwash on the Kapanese version. This mold has been tinkered with, and the Decepticon Dead End made. Dead End's Differences with Lambor include (aside from the new paint job):

          - New hubcaps, a larger front bumper, additional air vents in the hood.
          - Larger sidepipes, side skirts, an actual roof.
          - A totally remolded rear section including a spoiler, a completely different chest.
          - An entirely new head sculpt which is based on G1 Sunstreaker's head.

Sideswipe vs Dead End | Rims and Front Air Dam | Heads | Guns

About a year later, they did finally release the yellow Sunstreaker color of the 'Dead End' mold. It's interesting to note that the Binaltech Sunstreaker doesn't have the black racing stripes that the American Alternator version does.

BT vs Alt Sunstreaker | Sunstreaker vs Dead End

Hound / Swindle

Hound: Again, we're looking at diecast versus the plastic Hasbro types in the Alternators series. This mold was retooled, recolored, and re-released as Swindle. Differences with Hound include larger tires, a heavily remolded front bumper including a grille guard and an entirely new head sculpt based on a hybrid version of the toy and cartoon version of G1 Trailbreaker (looks exactly like Trailbreaker from Transformers Universe #1) (In-addition, Swindle's Japanese system description confirms he was "originally built as an Autobot", but his body got "stolen" just like how Sunstreaker ended up as Dead End). The American line got a red recolor of Swindle called Rollbar.

Bt Hound vs Swindle | Closeup of Tires | Head


Tracks: Japanese version is yellow. US version was originally planned to be yellow, but - officially - due to some problems with the interior shining through the plastic, it was swapped to blue at the last moment (expect this to end up as the reincarnation of the "blue Bluestreak" legend). A blue version saw a later Japanese release, which has the flame stickers on the hood! (American version doesn't have those, darn-it...though they did do an exclusive red version called swerve, which eventually included the sticker). There is a remold/recolor of this mold called Battle Ravage. Differences include - aside from the new paint job and the different license plate - a missing roof (Ravage is a convertible), new hubcaps and a new head sculpt based on BW Ravage.

Blue vs Yellow Tracks | Tracks vs Battle Ravage

Meister / Zoom Zoom / Laserwave

Meister (Jazz) (Mazda RX-8): The USA version comes in white, the Japanese version comes in both white and red (red being the Zoom Zoom version) and were produced in equal numbers (contrary to earlier rumors). Additionally, there exists an ultra limited edition (only one item exists!) in a pink/blue/yellow color scheme chosen by and signed by famous Japanese bikini model Mayuko Iwasa, which is currently auctioned for charity at Yahoo! Japan. Steering wheels are on the right side on the BT release, left for the Alternator release. Rear view mirrors reflect on the BT release, but not on the Alternator version. Steering veins are held together with magnets on the BT release, but with a cone and hole system on the Alternator version. Note that Meister was remolded and re-released as Laserwave/Shockblast. Changes include a new paint job (now purplish blue) and the different license plate, and also sports a remolded front bumper, larger side skirts, new hubcaps (the vehicle mode is based on the "Mazdaspeed" version of the RX-8), and...the left hand was replaced with an arm cannon and a new head sculpt based on G1 Shockwave. :-)

Meister vs Zoom Zoom | Shockblast

Grimlock / Wheeljack

Grimlock (Mustang): Binaltech version is of-course diecast. :-) There are also chrome highlights on the hubs, and on the engine/gun. This unit was recolored and remolded into Wheeljack (different rims, new spoiler, you know the drill) (details in-process).

Grimlock vs Wheeljack

Overdrive / Wildrider

Overdrive (Windcharger) vs Wildrider (Decepticharge, or Dragstrip if you prefer): Again, like all other Binaltechs vs Alternators, we're looking at diecast vs the Hasbro plastic versions. Head seems to be based on G1 Overdrive (Omnibots mail-away exclusive). The "Windcharger" name is most probably due to trademark issues. Prototypes came with a sniper rifle that had a very long gun barrel (which formed the drive shaft for the vehicle mode), and was included in the BT versions, but for the American Alternators toys, the barrel was omitted (not "remolded", the barrel part is simply missing), which, according to Hasbro, was done so it "wouldn't look like a weapon" (therefore this seems to be Honda's request rather than "safety" issues).

Overdrive vs Wildrider


Prowl: Accura Integra, has a police and standard blue versions. The blue version has no siren lights, and a large back spoiler. It's also interesting to note that the steering wheel has once again switched sides. :-)

Binaltech Prowl (Police vs Blue)

Skids / Broadblast

Skids and Broadblast (Blaster): Once again, metal on the BT version, as well as the steering wheel being on the left side. Interesting note: the BT Skids came with an extra set of stickers, so that you could give him the sidestripe the original Skids had (the grey blaster recolor only came with the flame stickers).

Binaltech Skids vs Broadblast | Binaltech vs Alternator Skids (Sticker Differences)

Prize Versio Meister

Prize version Meister: pink. God awful ugly. Signed by a model.

Pic 1 | Pic 2 | Pic 3


Binaltech packaging: went from standard grey box, to white box beginning with Prowl, while the BTA line packaged them in robot-mode along with a small PVC figure (Broadblast, Sunstreaker, Alert.)

A great read on Binaltech and Alternators can be found on Torsten's site (No Longer Available).

Robot Masters vs TF Juniors

In 2004, Takara released a line containing recolors of Machinewars and Beast Wars toys, as well as all new molds; scaled down versions of their larger-sized toys. Considering the scale to which they were shrunk, I find it appropriate to put the TF Juniors listing in the same area...after all, it's pretty much the same concept to me. ;-)

TF Juniors

- 3-Pack (Prime, Fortress Maximus, Chromedome)
- Optimus Prime (Pic 1 | Pic 2)
- Soundwave (Pic)
- Soundblaster (Pic)
- Trypticon (Pic 1 | Pic 2)
- Metroplex
- Godmaster Ginrai - Two seperate packs of him/two different toys. (Pic 1 | Pic 2)
- Rodimus Convoy
- Ultra Magnus (Pic)
- Ultra Magnus vs Galvatron
- Lucky Draw Rodimus, Optimus, Star Sabre, God Ginrai, and Fortress Maximus (Pic)
- Star Saber with Camera
- Star Saber without Camera
- Raiden 2 Packs
- Raiden Giftset
- Grand Maximus
- Chromedome + Rodimus Prime (??)

* Then several watch/gun thingies and those JR Seven model kits. (That's a whole 'nother subject!)

(See Also: Kabaya and Other Model-Kit TFs!)

Robot Masters

RM-01 - G1 Convoy (Anime Version)
RM-02 - Beast Wars Megatron
RM-03 - Ligier (Rijie)
RM-04 - Wrecker Hook
RM-05 - R-Blade (Cyberjet Redeco)
RM-06 - Air Hunter
RM-07 - Bound Rogue
RM-08 - Wingstun
RM-09 - Psych-Orb (Armordillo)
RM-10 - G1 Convoy w/DVD (Metallic Version)
RM-11 - Beast Wars Convoy
RM-12 - Starscream
RM-13 - Smokesniper
RM-14 - Gigant Bomb
RM-15 - Star Saber
RM-16 - Victory Leo
RM-17 - Victory Saber
RM-18 - Road Rocket
RM-19 - Doubleface (Roadpig)
RM-20 - Delta Seeker vs IxGunner
RM-21 - Burning (Beast) Convoy w/ DVD
RM-22 - LioConvoy
RM-23 - Flash LioConvoy w/ DVD
RM-24 - Reverse Convoy (Hero Megatron Tank Remold)

Thundercraker and Skywarp (Starscream recolors in Giftpack)

G1 Convoy, Black Edition [Dengeki Hobby Magazine Exclusive]
Beast Convoy, Black Edition [Hobby Japan Magazine Exclusive]
Starscream, Black Edition [Figure King Magazine Exclusive]
Beast Megatron, Black Edition [Hyper Hobby Magazine Exclusive]

It's interesting to me how some molds have gone through the recycling wringer. Wrecker Hook, for example, was originally a Machine Wars toy, reissued for RID, and now again in Robot Masters (same for Air Hunter and Wing Stun, who were Machine Wars toys Megatron and Thundercracker, respectively).

Smokesniper and Gigant Bomb are an interesting case. While most figures in the set are either simple recolors (or completely new toys), these two are tweaked (mold-changes, of course) apparently in order to hold other energon weapons in the RM line. The handholds on both figures were made smaller, the missles (and corresponding launcher) now sport two notches and grooves (versus the previous Armada tweak of one groove). It's nuts. More...

Small Fists | Missles | Handles | Front | 4-Shot

Defensis writes: "Keep in mind that the second name in RM-20 is probably gonna require tweaking. No one seems to have agreed just what the hell its name is, and probably won't until it's released (it's a G2 Cyberjet recolor, by the way, as is the Delta Seeker in the box with know, R-Blade completes the trio, pretty much). Doubleface is the correct name for RM-19...incidentally the same name used for Micron Legend's version of Armada Sideways. RM-21 has been revealed to be a retread of the limited movie-release 'Burning Convoy'...transparent red plastic, gold paint details, the works. Its impending release has pretty much lead most everyone to believe that the RM-23 recolor of Lio Convoy is going to be the companion piece, 'Flash Lio Convoy'. You have both of the originals covered."

Reverse Convoy is an interesting remold of the G2 Hero Megs toy. They gave him a completely new gun (no more bellows here, instead there's a small barrel snap-back system, as well as a detachable hand held missle launcher), and a new 'main' head. I'll admit to being impressed as to how they engineered the second head to swivel over. :-) It's stored in the back of the gun. Pics below of Archforce and Reverse Convoy, for comparison purposes:

Tank Mode | Tank (Top) | Robot Mode | Surprise!!

Galaxy Force:

The Japanese version of America's 2005 Cybertron line.



GC-01 - Galaxy Convoy
GC-02 - Exillion
GC-03 - Vector Prime
GC-04 - Dreadrock
GC-05 - Jackshot
GC-06 - Backpack
GC-07 - Micron Team ("Hop" "Bumper" and "Blit")
GC-08 - Auto Micron Team ("Gazenda"?, "Shiana"?, "Slow"?)
GC-10 - Nitro Convoy
GC-11 - Fastaid
GC-12 - Skids
GC-13 - Autoroader
GC-14 - Wolfang
GC-15 - Syds
GC-16 - Lagerjack
GC-17 - Autobolt
GC-18 - Liveconvoy


GD-01 - Master Megatron
GD-02 - Thundercracker
GD-03 - Starscream
GD-04 - Land Bullet
GD-05 - Gasket
GD-06 - Inchup
GD-07 - Dinoshout
GD-08 - Flame Convoy
GD-09 - Demolisher
GD-10 - Tracebar


THS-01 - Galaxy Convoy (Smaller version of Galaxy Convoy.)
GX-01 - Sideways

Micron Booster Version 3 (Pic)

- Top to Bottom, Left to Right: Jack, Trigger, Bit, Gauge, Dice, Plier, Clamp, Socket, Bug Drone, Plug, Wrench...and the chase metallic goober that rules over them all is Bug General.

Runabout vs Longrack; Blurr vs Buzzsaw: Now here's an interesting set of remolds. :-) Each of these was an Armada mold, retooled to be a different character. The homages run rampant, and are covered in the Cybertron section of the site. As for paint changes between the American and Japanese versions, it seems that Run and Blurr are identical, while Blurr and Buzzsaw (in-process).

Galaxy Force mini-me: Actually, I dunno what to call the tiny ones. I've forgotten their names. Basically, tiny versions of many of your favorite GF TFs, now fun-size! These were released in America too (Fleetfarm and Shopko, for example) but one key piece is the 3-pk clear giftset of Prime, Megatron, and Starscream exclusive to Japan (pic in-process).

2007 Movie

Japan had a few recolors exclusive to their market:

Note that the package back was similar, with the addition of a Japanese sticker on the package front in Bumblebee's cases.

Bumblebee 74 - Clear blue windows version.
Bumblebee 74 - Metallic Lawson's movie version.
Arcee - Motorcycle in black.
Fusion Cluster Protoform Prime and Starscream - Clear.
Legends Bumblebee - Clear.