Tag Archives: Japan

Transformers GT – Part 4

Transformers GT - Mission GT-R accomplished


As quietly as it came, TakaraTomy’s Transformers GT toy-line has seemingly given us its last offering and wrapped up with as little fanfare as when it launched. That’s not for a lack of trying on TakaraTomy’s behalf though, this gorgeous short-lived series has suffered primarily from being perceived as nothing more than expensive repaints of existing …

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Yesterday’s Heroes

Red or Black?


What’s scorching hot today in vintage Transformers collecting and often labelled “rare”, causing a frenzy on auction and realising astronomical end prices? Japanese exclusives like Liokaiser, Black Shadow, Blue Bacchus, Big Powered, Guard City and Battle Gaia? Peruvian minibots? US Defensor giftsets and high-grade sealed Megatrons and Soundwaves? Well it wasn’t always that way, over a decade …

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Who Is Tigertrack? – Part 1

Just a 'Yellow Sideswipe'?


Who is “Tigertrack” and why does he deserve a Transformers Masterpiece release? Well, he’s just a yellow repaint of MP-12 Masterpiece Lambor (Sideswipe), an homage to the 2004 reissue exclusive “Tigertrack” – another yellow repaint of G1 reissue Sideswipe, right? A poor man’s Masterpiece Sunstreaker, right? Wrong. Over the next 2 weeks I hope to convince you that there …

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Is It Conceivable? – Part 4

GiG Trasformer Micro Change Series


Chic, prestigious, expensive, revered, exotic and understated all at once, these are the Pre-Transformers. All of those things that make them special contribute to so many of them being unobtainable. As widely as Diaclone and Micro Change Series toys were released globally in various guises, their distribution and quantity was certainly nothing compared to the blanket that was …

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Is It Conceivable? – Part 3

Iga Pipes, Hasbro and Kabaya Huffer


Welcome to the jungle. This is no place for collectors who dwell in the safe confines of AFA cases or between walls of MISB Japanese Transformers. The minibot collector and variant hunter has to get his hands and feet dirty travelling well off the beaten path. Digging up histories of countries not previously associated with …

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Is It Conceivable? – Part 2

Early Cybertron wall


Japanese Transformers are not just an exotic flavour to be sampled by collectors who fancy adding a touch of spice to a normal G1 collection. Some Transformers enthusiasts actively try to complete the whole run of Takara G1 Transformers from start to finish. In addition, a few hardy souls even take up the challenge of finding all of these foreign …

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Am I Just Being Paranoid?

Diaclone Marlboor Lancia Stratos Turbo


Why are the prices of Diaclones and specific Japanese exclusive Transformers ballooning out of control? Is it really because there are so many more collectors on the market due to Michael Bay’s movies? Are we really to believe that Transformers-only collectors who finally got around to completing G1 are all of a sudden …

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Mail-away G1 Transformers – Part 2

Japanese G1 mail-away Gnaw "Limited Edition" sticker


One man’s pegwarmer is another’s mail-away rarity. While toys like G1 Ratchet were common as muck and available everywhere in North American and European toy stores, in Japan it was never sold in stores and only available as a mail-away, and he wasn’t the only one! From exclusive artwork and packaging to standard Hasbro-packaged items, the second part of …

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Japanese Transformers 1988 (Chōjin Masterforce) – Part 2

Over priced, Over hyped, Overlord


Japanese exclusive Transformers are old news aren’t they? Big time collectors have long since moved onto areas like Euro variants, AFA graded museum pieces and pre-Transformers. If that was true, then 1988 Destrons such as Overlord, Darkwings and Black Zarak would not be commanding 4 figure sums. Still an extremely hot area of collecting, Japanese exclusives from the Masterforce series are not …

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Japanese Transformers 1988 (Chōjin Masterforce) – Part 1

Preeee-tend-aaaah!


I hated Masterforce. The intro to the anime was unbelievably camp, they were trying to glorify Pretenders, there was too much of a human-centric approach, the toys are ridiculously expensive, the humour in the show was immature and just generally unbearable. I hated Masterforce…until I actually watched it! By the third episode I was not only a convert but an avid follower, fan, enthusiast, whatever …

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