This is the latest in a series (of indefinite length and regularity) of blog posts memorializing cancelled toys. Our figure today is Hasbro's The War Within Bumblebee.
The Cybertron-mode Bumblebee we reviewed today was not Hasbro's first attempt. This Bumblebee would have been part of the Titanium Series, which saw quite a few War Within designs come to life.
Bumblebee was developed with an alternate head to turn him into a future Cliffjumper repaint. Since all the War Within designs were inspired by the Cybertron scenes in Generation 1, the altmode was intended to be an approximation of what was seen back in 1984.
The 6" Titanium figures had poor distribution, and eventually future releases were cancelled. Resin hardcopies of several figures were displayed at BotCon 2007 (in robot mode, with photos of the altmodes), since that was the only way fans would ever get to see the work that had been done.
I seem to remember quite a few of the Titanium figures weren't exactly marvels of engineering as far as Transformers go, so that might also have had something to do with the failure of the line.
Even with Bumblebee here, the proportions feel off somehow.
6" Titanium figures were awful. I had Rodimus and it was junk. Soundwave got rightly mocked too for looking like he was wearing a diaper (The mockery went so far enough that a Reprolabels sticker set was made http://news.tfw2005.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/1969/12/39471474f18fcac9b2_0.jpg ). Many figures had bad designs, lousy engineering, floppy joints, easily chipped paint etc.
I'm not that keen on the new Cybertron Bumblebee figure linked in the post either though. The alt-mode is nice but trying to force it on a robot mode that is clearly his earth mode (because the cartoon didn't bother with cybertronian bodies) results in all that ugly kibble in bot mode. I far, far prefer the 2010 cybertronian Bumblebee figure based on the video game. Had so much more style and still looks good today and far cooler than any of the 'cybertronian' designs Hasbro did for Siege and such.