Full disclosure – this was not the planned topic for today’s Countdown! Well, not exactly; the idea was to do a rundown of the most exciting third party reveals from last weekend’s TFCon in DC… until that is we saw what was actually revealed. Yep, despite a good showing from other 3P companies it’s only fair to say that FansToys got the mic drop on this one, showcasing plans for a whopping Fortress Maximus toy that will dwarf everything else in its path. It’s tremendously exciting although details are still a little scarce, so today we’re counting down the 10 biggest questions we have after *that* reveal.
#10: How big is it exactly?
Here’s what we know for sure – FansToys Fort Max will be *the* biggest Transformers toy ever. Sure, it’s not official so won’t count in everyone’s mind, but still it will tower over anything else in your collection by some margin. How big is it exactly? Well, we don’t know for sure, but given the size comparison shown with FansToys Hoodlum, a figure that stands approximately 7.5 inches, we can get a rough idea. Various sources are saying that it’ll end up being somewhere between 3.5 to 4 feet (or roughly around 120cm), which would mean it’ll be roughly the height of a 4 or 5-year-old child. Not that we’re keeping score but that would make it potentially over twice as tall as the last official Fort Max toy from the Titans Return/ Legends line (which was 22 inches), and still considerably bigger than Hasbro Pulse’s recent Unicron reveal (billed as being the biggest official Transformers toy on record), which is 28 inches. Say what you will about FT, but that’s a ballsy move.
#9: How much will it cost?
Again, we don’t really know, but it’s a key question! Pre-orders for this beast have started to pop up at some retailers already, but the final price has yet to be unveiled. Terminus Giganticus (which up until now was FansToys’ biggest release) eventually retailed at around $350, although again that was roughly about 22 inches from top to toe, so a good deal smaller than Max. Some people are speculating that this will be approximately twice the price for twice the size, bringing us to $700, but who knows if that will be the logic applied and what other factors need to be taken into account. There’s also the consideration that the original price for Terminus was going to be over $450 before FT seemingly reconsidered and brought it down, not to mention that a potential $700 price tag for Max starts to look comparatively cheap next to Haslab Unicron’s $575 given the extreme size difference, so maybe we should be adjusting our expectations accordingly. Either way, it ain’t gonna be cheap.
#8: When will it be released?
How long is a piece of string? FansToys have never been known for having rigorous release dates, and even if they did give an estimate now then there’s no way to guarantee if that will go to plan or not. All we’ve seen so far are computerised renders, so it’s possible that FT don’t even have a physical prototype finalised yet (which would also explain why the final height hasn’t been confirmed, as surely that’s something to show off). Even if they do, there will still be a huge amount of development required for a toy of this size and complexity, not to mention FT having to book factory time and the physical production and shipping process that will follow. Best guess? We could be talking a good two years or more away from the thing finally seeing release, although let’s hope that more updates come soon and FT get it moving into their already-busy production schedule in good time.
#7: What’s the deal with FT-40A Cerebros?
It seems like maybe a lot of people missed this from the initial reveal, but there’re actually two toys on offer here – Fort Max himself and his Headmaster partner, Cerebros, as a separate release (FT-40A). However, it appears that FT-40 will still come with his head, which raises a lot of questions in itself. Does that mean that the FT-40 head will still be transformable and will be identical to the 40A release, and 40A is just for people who don’t fancy shelling out for the entire big lad? Or does it mean that the head for FT-40 is just a non-transforming piece and if you want a Cerebros toy then you need to also purchase 40A? Or are they both transformable but there will be differences between the two (perhaps 40A is smaller to account for the larger scale needed for Fort Max’s head to not be undersized)? Honestly, we have no idea at this stage but it’s fun to speculate! Whatever the case it’s exciting to think that we’ll be getting a scaled MP-style Cerebros toy, although we suspect a lot of Western collectors will be clamouring for options to make him appear closer to his appearance in The Rebirth.
#6: Will it be shipped as one piece?
I’ve seen a lot of people speculating over this one already. After all, logic would dictate that it could be a good way to go, especially as the whole FT-40 release is likely to weigh a ton and would therefore be very expensive to ship. There’s also precedent for this, given that FansToys chose to split Terminus Giganticus into two parts for ease of shipping. I guess we’ll have to see but don’t be surprised if FansToys decides to take this route for Fort Max.
#5: Will there be repaints?
So, you’ve wrapped your head around owning a 4-foot Transformer and decide to plump up the cash. But what happens if FansToys were to later unveil repainted versions of this design? Could you handle another figure the same size? Or two? Because that could well come to pass if they decide to re-release FT-40 in Grand Maximus or Brave Maximus colours. It’s true that FT are not exactly known for their abundance of repaints (toy-accurate Galvatron when, please?), although recently we have seen alternate decos released for the likes of Quietus, Sovereign and Phoenix, so who knows? Could anyone justify a second (or even third) version of such a figure?
#4: Will there be other characters in a similar scale?
As well as repaints of the Fort Max mould itself, this release certainly throws up the potential for FansToys (or indeed their competitors) to attempt other projects at a similar scale. The most obvious contender is Scorponok, given that he’s Max’s opposite number but also taking into account his current lack of a Titan-scale release. But allow your imagination to wander a bit and you’ll soon be pondering the likes of Black Zarak, Trypticon, Metroplex, Metrotitan… and if all of these are of a similar stature to Max then it could get very expensive very fast – not to mention the sort of display that would be required for a collection like that! It’s sort of both exciting and terrifying at the same time! We can’t say we’re looking forward to the endless debates about whether Fort Max should be bigger or shorter than Metroplex though.
#3: Will FansToys release the other Autobot Headmasters?
OK we’re going to go out on a limb on and say yes, we’ll absolutely be seeing FansToys’ interpretations of Chromedome, Hardhead, Brainstorm and Highbrow at some point. After all we’ve already seen their Decepticon counterparts, with Chomp still in production as we speak. Besides, it’s just a no-brainer, isn’t it? Hey, maybe we’ll even get a set of Targetmasters whilst we’re at it! Lots of 3pMP collectors already have Maketoys Cupola, Iron Will and Contact Shot in their ranks, but at this pace it feels like FansToys have a good chance of beating them to the punch, so watch this space.
#2: Will HasTak take notice?
— Sixo (@SixoTF) October 27, 2019
It was inevitable that fans would consider what FT Fort Max meant for releases like Haslab Unicron, and I’ve already seen a few people saying that FT-40 kinda puts Hasbro’s biggest-Transformer-ever reveal in the shade a bit. True, there’s little doubt that FT timed their announcement to take some of the sheen off the Chaos Bringer’s impending arrival, but fortunately there are still plenty of people (including myself) who’re massively excited for Unicron (even if this move to make bigger and bigger things all the time is getting a big out of hand now!). It’s maybe also worth remembering that Hasbro seemingly had a hand in halting production of Zeta Toys’ attempt at a Unicron figure, and whilst you could argue that’s because it was a directly competing effort at the same character, it’s also not a total stretch to think that something the size of FT-40 may be too much for Hasbro or Takara to ignore. I guess time will tell and we’re certainly crossing our fingers that FT can bring it all the way to release, but really this is unchartered territory at this point.
#1: Where are we going to put the thing anyway?
So yeah, it's by no means exact but based on that comparison with Hoodlum here's how you can roughly expect FT Max to stand with the rest of your MP collection. I know size classes aren't a thing for 3PMP but may I suggest "Detolf Class"? 😂 pic.twitter.com/65t6DFPTn9
— Sixo (@SixoTF) October 27, 2019
Masterpiece toys take up a lot of room. If you have some of the bigger lads such as Ultra Magnus then you’ll know what kind of shelf space is required, and that’s saying nothing of the larger FansToys figures. Grinder, Phoenix and Terminus Giganticus all felt like the *biggest thing ever* at the time of release but have all been outdone since, and every time it gets way harder to find the room for these things. Seriously, who on earth is going to actually be able to display FT-40? The thing is the size of a detolf! I’ve no doubt that a few of us are going to end up sticking it in the corner of a room somewhere – maybe hanging clothes off it occasionally, who knows? Joking aside, space is one of the biggest considerations on any collector’s mind when it comes to a purchase of this manner, and for good reason. At least it will be fun seeing what solutions everyone comes up with for how to store him!
So, that’s our list! Do you agree with our choices? Are you excited for FT-40? Let us know and of course feel free to voice your own thoughts!