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BT-7274 w/ pilot Jack Cooper

Titanfall 2
by yo go re

You had one job.

BT-7274 is a highly advanced Vanguard-class Titan with a voice of his own. BT-7274 observes three protocols: Link to Pilot, Uphold the Mission, and Protect the Pilot. When his original Pilot is killed in action, BT-7274 is left with no other option but to link with Rifleman Jack Cooper in order to uphold the mission and survive.

When the original Titanfall came out, it seemed a wonder no one was making any toys of it. Clearly it was just an issue of scale, because who could afford to make a big, giant robot and a decently-sized pilot to go inside it, and yet keep the price at a point stores would be happy with? Give the license to NECA, and we'd get awesome robots but no pilots; give the license to Hasbro, and we'd get GI Joe-style figures with $60 battle suits that the fans would claim to love, but would still wait until clearance before buying any. So then the game was something of a flash in the pan anyway (when your game is online multiplayer only, it kind of depends on multiple players being online and wanting to play it, or else you've just charged us full price for a loading screen). But hey, the game somehow managed to get a sequel, and the sequel somehow managed to get toys. Yay! From McFarlane. Oh.

BT does look very nice, we'll grant that. McToys' website boasts of a "spectacular likeness" "captured directly from Titanfall 2," which suggests to us that this is based on digital files, rather than being sculpted by hand. That's fine, that's the smart way to create robot toys, which are more about precision than artistry; humans may need exaggeration to look right at scale, but mecha doesn't. Thus, the toy of this Titan looks just like the game: a bipedal robo with surprisingly narrow, digitigrade feet, boxy shapes forming the arms and legs, bits that specifically look like kneepads, grippy little fingers... basically, instead of being designed like some kind of fantasty machine shaped like a human, this looks like the evolution of one of those creepy-ass robots Boston Dynamics is always making run around in the woods.

Articulation has never been Todd's strong point; even when it was good, it wasn't that good. BT's is decent, but that's all. It has swivel/hinge ankles, wrists, elbows and shoulders. then balljointed hips and swivel shoulders. Yes, we mentioned shoulders twice. It really does have two swivel joints right next to each other in the shoulder. Bet you never thought you'd hear us say a McFarlane toy had too many joints, huh? Of course, it also has too few, since there are no knees or waist, the wrist hinges aren't super useful, and his eye (specifically design to be mobile and expressive) doesn't move around at all, but still, things could be worse. The entire figure is made from a rather hollow plastic, so it's light enough that the joints won't give way.

The figure comes with a bigass gun, which the marketing identifies as an X016-A2 Titan weapon (the second game's version of the original's XOTBR-16 Chaingun). It's a big machine gun with a colorful ammo drum on one side, and seems to owe at least a small debt to Aliens' Smartguns. He can hold the gun in either hand: BT is natively left-handed (if such a thing can be said about a 40-ton killbot), but that can be overriden if his pilot is a rightie. There are also missile pods mounted behind the shoulders, but they're just solid pieces, not articulated bits that could actually fold out. That's disappointing.

And hey, speaking of disappointing, here's BT's pilot! Jack Cooper is a 3" figure with a bit of articulation - balljointed head, swivel shoulders and wrists - that is still not enough to get him out of his climbing/crawling/squatting pose. He's carrying a machine gun in his right hand, and the dteails of his jumpsuit and armor are sculpted very well, but that pose... man, that pose! You may think that being in such a specific pose, one meant to show Jack clambering up onto BT's shoulder, would make it hard to fit the figure inside the Titan's cockpit. Well, to that, we invite you to scroll back up to the top of the page and read the first line of the review again.

The Titan's cockpit does not open. The entire game mechanic of Titanfall involves getting into and out of giant mech suits, but McFarlane Toys has released a set of a pilot and a Titan that lacks that basic level of interaction. How does anyone make such a fundamental and obvious mistake? It would be like releasing Tetris blocks that somehow didn't fit together. I know this is Todd McFarlane, a guy the toy industry passed by, like, 15 years ago, but come on! Even if you had to put the pilot inside there in his goofy pose, it would still be better than not putting him in there at all. Heck, we might even accept a cockpit that opens and is fully detailed inside, but won't hold a figure! Even that seems better than "no cockpit at all."

Hey, just for funsies, here's the text from the original product listing:

  • Spectacular likeness of BT-7274 Titan captured directly from in-game 3D models
  • Figure comes with fully posable 3" Jack Cooper figure
  • Articulated BT-7274 Titan with operational opening and closing cockpit to fit 3" Jack Cooper figure
  • Includes X016-A2 Titan weapon
  • Exclusive Todd McFarlane designed Titan Nose-Art included as Downloadable Titanfall 2 In-Game Content

Seems like a few things are missing, huh? If you look at the first promotional images, not only will you see Jack in a different pose, you can clearly make out the hinges that would have allowed the cockpit to open.

McFarlane Toys' BT-7274 with Pilot Jack Cooper deluxe box set could have been a real winner from a company most people forget exists, but a nice sculpt and paint can't make up for typically insufficient articulation and the one feature that should have been there, no question. This just isn't worth getting at full price.

-- 04/23/17


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