Mega Review: Includes Tomahawk and Defender, all versions
Packaging & Extras: (4/5)
These toys come packaged in Yamato’s early 1/60 V2 VF-1 style boxes. The artwork is attractive enough and features a collector’s style flip-top box. The extras here aren’t very remarkable but I can’t really figure out how much more they could have done. Inside the box you’ll get the following beside the toy:
1x Pilot Figure
2x Ground Crew Figure
2x Larger Ammunition Magazines (Defender only)
1x Instructions (Weathering editions also come with a leaflet explaining how waterslide decals work)
Stickers (Weather editions come with waterslide decals instead of stickers)
Waterslide Decals (Weathering Versions Only)
These toys come with 1/60 ground crew figures that differ between Tomahawk and Defender releases (but unfortunately don’t differ between regular and green variants). Beyond that you get some brief instructions and lots of decals. I don’t handle decals personally but I read over at MacrossWorld that the decals included in both the version 2.0 VF-1 and this destroid are much improved from Yamato’s previous efforts. The Weathering Edition releases come with water-slide decals to spruce things up. You can tell the Weathering Edition version apart from the standard releases by a big white circular sticker on the front.
Charm & Collectability: (2.5/5) (+.5 for weathering editions)
Let’s be honest, there aren’t many fans of the destroids. In fact, I’m pretty surprised that they went with the destroids before doing the Glaug or Regult in 1/60 scale (and yes, I’m aware those would be bigger toys). You may have noticed that this is the first destroid toy ever reviewed on my site (gashapons excepted). These are cool enough in the series but I never saw much allure to playing with them as a toy… for the most part they just sat on the deck of the SDF-1 blowing up distant enemies or being destroyed by closer ones. When I initially reviewed these toys I said:
“There’s no transformation, just a tiny bit of metal, and while it is an excellent toy it may very well be destined for bargain bins some day. ” That some day came and these toys were available at steep discounts, even the weathering versions. Now that day has passed and the secondary market value of these toys is definitely on the rise. They make excellent backgrounds for Macross displays, but they still have very limited appeal. Here are the release details:
Tomahawak September 2008 9,800 YEN
Tomahawk green December 2008 9,800 YEN
Tomahawk Weathering November 2009 12,000 YEN
Tomahawk Weathering Green November 2009 12,000 YEN
Defender December 2008 9,800 YEN
Defender Green April 2009 9,800 YEN
Defender Weathering November 2009 12,000 YEN
Defender Weathering Green November 2009 12,000 YEN
Sculpt, Detail, & Paint: (9/10)
When you first pull this toy from its box you’ll almost certainly be impressed. There are rivets in some panels, deep recesses in all the gun barrels, and plenty of fine detail to assure you that this is the finest crafted destroid ever made. I would have liked to have seen the Tomahawk with a bit darker color but that’s my only real complaint. I’m guessing that Yamato had a difficult time determining how much detail they should apply for the people buying these toys because there was never one Tomahawk that had hero markings. It would appear that Yamato elected to go light on tampo printed markings and instead supply you with a HUGE decal sheet so that you could make your destroid look however you prefer. Some people will love this, I’m a bit turned off by it since I never bother with stickers or decals. Of all the destroids the Tomahawk was my least favorite (I always thought it looked like a frog as a child and as an adult the gun arms seem like they wouldn’t function without being wildly inaccurate) but this toy is so nice that it has warmed me up to the design a bit. Both destroids feature plenty of details that will impress. The paint work on the Tomahawk’s missiles is excellent. The ammunition detail near the shoulders and in the removeable magazines on the Defender is likewise very impressive. Some will feel the weathering is a bit heavy on the Weathering Editions, especially the Tomahawk. The weathering does appear to be black airbrushed paint on the standard releases and beige airbrushed paint on the green releases. My only real complaint is that with all that weathering even the impressive water-slide decals may look a little too minty when applied.
Design: (8/10) (+.5 for Defender)
I have only one gripe with the Tomahawk; I wish the upper body latched a bit more securely to the legs and waist. That’s not to say the Tomahawk falls apart constantly but there were a few times, while testing out the articulation, the upper body would become unlodged without my expecting or desiring it to. Apparently Yamato took note as the Defender’s upper body latches at the waist. There’s a lot to like from all the opening doors revealing inner detail to the layout of all the joints. I’m penalizing these toys a tiny bit since there’s no transformation to it so the design can only be so remarkable. The Defender has a neat hidden feature that allows the user to slide the sensor array so you can choose to point it in a similar elevation as however you’ve positioned the arms. Both the Defender and Tomahawk feature opening cockpits for the included 1/60 pilot figures, the Defender adds a trap door (as per the line art) so that you can see the pilot inside. Word is that Yamato cheated a little and made the Tomahawks pilot a bit smaller than 1/60 scale but the figure included with the Defender is proper, see pic above. It’s also worth noting that while Yamato left some tampo printing detail off for the benefit of customizer they also made this toy so that it can be largely disassembled. The feet could have benefited from a ratcheted front toe as the toy can also fall forward a little too easily for my liking. Check out the picture of the Frankenstein destroids below.
Durability & Build: (8.5/10)
My only question, at the moment, is: “how well will these joints put up with a lot of movement?” Over time I suspect this toy might get loose and, while it will always be a good looking destroid capable of holding some stoic poses, if it were to get loose that’d really hamper your ability to get into really aggressive poses. Some of the joints on the feet of my samples are already pretty fluid in their movement and it’d be nice if they were a bit tighter to help support the weight of the toy if in a severe lean or attempted running pose. The waist also was fairly fluid on my Tomahawk sample, an observation I have seen in other reviews as well, and a condition that could lead to the upper body slanting back when you don’t necessarily want it to. On the plus side, there’s metal in some of the joints due for more pressure and stress.
The articulation of these toys is very impressive but the score suffers a bit from the fact the designs for these toys feature limited arm articulation. Obviously you can’t have quite as much fun getting a toy into crazy poses when the arms aren’t dynamic. Still, you shouldn’t expect anything from these arms and you get everything you could expect from the rest of the body. I have a lot of fun setting these toys up as back drops for my hero mechs. The hips feature a mechanism allowing you to pull the legs down a bit to achieve greater articulation.
Total Score: (40.5/50) Standard Tomahawk, (41/50) Tomahawk Weathering and Standard Defender, (41.5/50) Weathering Defender
In the world of Macross toys we had to endure a lot of years with some really mediocre toys or rehashes of toys that were great over two decades ago. Fortunately we’re finally at a point where the products made for us are worth the time and effort to acquire. These destroids though are really going to make you struggle with whether or not they’re worth what Yamato is hoping to sell them for. I picked my standard releases up for full MSRP and later bought the Weathering Editions for about the same price, which represented a steep discount from the initial cost. The initial price point being so similar to the V2 VF-1 toys seemed to be a big mistake as those toys have much broader appeal and seem to often more with their three different modes. So, congratulations diehard destroid fans, you’ve finally gotten a toy worth your long wait and I’m sure you won’t feel let down scooping them up at retail. For the rest of you, the VF-1 version 2.0 is really quite impressive so you might want to weigh your options.
Original Post: August 22, 2011
Updated January 8, 2015, Included HD Tomahawk review, updated content
Updated January 16, 2015, Included HD Defender review