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Warpath

Transformers Generations
by yo go re

It's a rare group of characters that get multiple releases within a single toyline. In the world of Transformers, it's usually limited to Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, and characters of that stature. Now you can also throw Warpath in the mix.

Wherever the fight is, that's where Warpath wants to be. His super heavy armor and powerful weapons mean he doesn't have to worry about things like orders or tactics. He just heads straight for wherever the fighting is heaviest, pouring fire into the enemy, and hoping there's someone left standing to give him a good fight when he gets there.

Okay, technically this Deluxe Class figure is part of the Generations line, and the last Warpath was a Legends Class release in Universe 2.0, but we can all agree that Universe and Generations are basically the same toyline, right? They're the "classics" line that runs concurrently with the movie line du jour. To get Warpath in back-to-back lines is still a surprising accomplishment.

In Generation 1, Warpath was a little red tank. His modern incarnation is the odd "H-tank" that Hasbro loves so much these days, where instead of one tread on each side of the vehicle, there are two. It's very handy from a design standpoint, in that it allows the engineers to deal with the treads separately for arms and legs, rather than having to break them up. Doesn't hurt that it looks pretty futuristic, too - that goes along with the rather sleek shapes on the front end of the tank. Up front it's all slopes, while the back end is more squared off and muscular.

The tank's turret rotates and the gun barrel elevates. There are two grey weapons mounted on the rear of the turret: a quad missile launcher on the left, and a single rectangular launcher on the right; that single launcher actually fires a big red missile (though the trigger is sensitive, so don't point it at your face). There are two different serial numbers tampographed on the sides of the tank - K4-90W and Z0W-333 - and if you're deft at reading license plate abbreviations, you'll recognize those as "kapow" and "zoweee!"

Why kapow and zowee? Because Warpath's gimmick in the cartoon was that he was constantly ejaculating. You know, ejaculating - always popping off excited exclamations when he spoke. "We'll get those Decepticons, Optimus! Boom! Really show 'em who's boss! Zappo!" Like that. In fact, given that his altmode is a tank, you have to wonder if it was a pun on "Tourette syndrome." Tourette/turret, get it?

Converting Warpath is pretty easy to get the hang of. Raise the tank's hatch and push the barrel all the way in to reveal the head. Flip the front treads back behind the tank. Fold down the gray panel on the front, tucking it under the head, then lower the entire chest to plug into the waist. Swing the treads around to become feet, open some panels on his arms so you can fold those out, and bring the shoulder-mounted weapons up next to his head.

In this mode, Warpath stands just under 5½" tall. We're glad they went with this size, rather than bumping him up unnecessarily like Powerglide. He moves at the neck, shoulders, biceps, elbows, hips, thighs, knees and even the ankles, if you're being generous. Their movement is just part of the transformation, but it can be useful for posing.

The proportions in robot mode are excellent. Warpath looks tough and ready for a fight, with big, blocky limbs and lots of weapons on or around his chest. The tank treads end up on the bottoms of his feet, a nod to the old animation model. He's mostly a dark red, with a little bit of grey for his limbs and hands. There are some gold details at his waist, and the silver pipes running up onto the top of his shoulders look really cool. All his weaponry ends up on his upper torso, and the missile launcher can still fire (even when you don't want it to). For real cartoon-accuracy, you can pull the gun barrel out as far as you like - it's not like it went anywhere back in the day.

We almost didn't review Warpath, for several reasons. First of all, he was quite hard to find when he was released; it's only in the past few month or so that he's begun to show up in any appreciable numbers. Secondly, it was tempting to just say "holy crap, this is awesome, buy one the instant you see it." Both modes are very cool, and his conversion is just the right level of complexity and fun. It's like all the halfassery and suckitude they put into Straxus meant that there was nothing but goodness left when it was time to put together Warpath. So yeah, if you're a Transfan and you see Warpath, snap hm up.

-- 11/29/11


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