Alternate Mode: Eagle
Height: 2.5cm Length: 5cm Width: 13cm
A brown eagle in a soaring pose, Dreadwing has metallic blue on the front edges of his outstretched wings and a red painted head. There are also red "feathers" on his wings and some red on his back. Dreadwing has a small stamped Decepticon logo on his left wing, facing backwards but lacks painted eyes. The soaring eagle shape is pretty good and brown is a good colour choice - but the red paint on his head masks the moulded detailing there and this is exacerbated by the lack of painted eyes.
Dreadwing's overall sculpt is robotic and fairly simple. For the most part it simulates flight feathers on his wings. His poseability is fairly limited, but better than most beast MiniCons. The wingtips can swing in (ie retract) a little while the legs underneath can fold back for a true flying pose. Dreadwing can't stand on the legs anyway, needing the tail as a third leg. There are two powerlinx ports underneath his body.
I like the wingspan - not only are the dimensions impressive, but he really looks lie he's soaring. The feathered look of his sculpt and the little toes on his feet are quite impressive, however I really wish Dreadwing had eyes.
TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE
Unclip the leading edges of his wings, swing them forward to form robot legs and fold away the wingtips. Split the tail, swing out the tail and trailing wing sections to form a cape. Fold down the beast legs to form robot arms, which also creates a gap for the robot head, which you can flip into position.
Height: 7cm Width: 6cm
A brown robot with a red head and groin - and a silver face. The groin is the beast head - and since it ends in a pointed beak it's far too phallic for my liking. The torso is quite small while the cape behind his arms - which reaches down alongside his hips as well as up and out behind his shoulders - is huge.
The cape is quite majestic and it's a fairly clever way to justify the inevitable kibble a toy like this is going to have. The rest of the wings are folded up in his legs, and the end result is a fairly compact robot mode - considering the shape of his eagle mode.
The shoulders swing up while the elbows are ball joints which allow his forearms to bend up. The hips are also ball joints, although they don't offer much more than wiggle since there are no ankle or knee joints. He does have small heelspurs, which make him fairly stable - and the hips help his stability. There's a hinge where the red groin attaches to the torso itself, but this hinge isn't part of his transformation and trying to use it will result in the groin popping off anyway.
I do like the majestic cape, but Dreadwing has far too much brown, and the phallic groin bothers me. Overall I like this robot mode, but some work paint on his torso and the cape would have made Dreadwing's decent robot mode into a really good one.
Two decent modes and a clever transformation make for a decent MiniCon, but there are some problems. The paint job isn't very clever and this impacts on both modes. Dreadwing is the best toy in this set, but I can only give him 6.5/10
Alternate Mode: Wolf
Height: 4cm Length: 6.5cm Width: 2cm
A very black wolf, Overbite looks like something likely to be attacking you in a nightmare (or a B-grade horror flick), since he's almost entirely glossy black save for red eyes and a white stamped Decepticon logo on the left side of his ribcage (well, that area). There's also some dark purple on the hindlegs which is easy to miss. It works in the context of a predatory wolf, so while it's a sparse colour scheme I like it. The sculpt is mainly mechanical, although the overall look is still fairly organic.
Overbite's bodyshape is pretty good and the tail curls upwards, giving him a dynamic look. I really like the serrated mane behind his head and the tiny moulded teeth in his mouth. It all adds up to a sinister wolf, and the best beast in this set. There's not much play value, which betrays that dynamic look. The hindlegs can swing a little, the knees (technically ankles since he's digitigrade) are hinged and there are powerlinx ports on either hip.
As simple as the paint job here is, it works. The sinister black wolf fits into the name of this set perfectly and the bodyshape is good. Of course, there's a tradeoff in the quality of his robot mode, which is all too common in the Classics MiniCons.
TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE
Rotate the waist, swing up the hindlegs to become robot legs and straighten the legs somewhat. Split the mane/head and pivot out to either side, forming arms and revealing his head and chest.
Height: 6.5cm Width: 4cm
A black robot with some purple on his thighs, white on his chest and face and red head. Overbite's evil black theme doesn't quite work now since the red and white break up the black a lot more. While this this isn't a bad colour scheme, it's not anywhere near as successful as that of his beast mode.
The arms are kibble, the legs digitigrade - Overbite feels like a beast standing up. He's not a disaster, but the arms don't work since they are beast panels before really trying to be arms, and they just don't look like arms since they're curved and get in the way of his chest. The digitigrade legs aren't quite Beast Machines Cheetor-level failures, but the small feet do make him tricky to stand, and that's not helped by the forelegs which simply hang off his back, affecting the centre of gravity.
Underwhelming, really. Overbite is not a disaster but there's little to like about this robot mode, which is really here to support the beast mode. I don't hate this robot mode by any means, but I'll probably leave this guy in beast mode for a long time once this review is finished.
A nifty little pocket monster of a wolf mode is poorly supported by a badly executed robot mode. I can largely accept the fact that Overbite was always going to have limitations in robot mode with such a cool beast mode, but he needs heelspurs and the paint job isn't very focused. The beast mode does offer something, but he's still a fairly mediocre MiniCon overall - 6/10
Alternate Mode: Tiger
Height: 3.5cm Length: 7.5cm Width: 2.5cm
An orange tiger with black stripes and black eyes, Snarl sports a black Decepticon logo on his left shoulder. The sculpt is decidedly mechanical despite the organic stripes - an interesting mix. Most of his sculpt is fairly generic save for the tiny whiskers on his face and segments on his tail (which is an unusual feature!). The colours are pretty much a no-brainer for a tiger, so it's hard to be too critical, although you could ask for some striping on the body itself.
This isn't a great beast mode. The shape reminds me of cheap animal toy packs and his forelegs are far too big and angular for an animal that doesn't climb trees. The lower jaw does open and the tail lifts up, but his limbs are static (they look it, too!). The top of the torso - which includes the head - doesn't anchor well at all, which is disappointing.
A pretty poor effort, really. The scary part is that this is Snarl's better mode. There's just a lack of effort on this entire figure, but the beast mode seems to be the starting point of the design, and as a result comes out slightly less awful.
TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE
Lift up the head and back, swing down the rear. Fold down the front legs, rotate the waist and swing out the robot boots.
Height: 5.5cm Width: 8.5cm
An orange robot with some remnants of the black stripes on his arms, while the Decepticon logo is on his right arm. Snarl has a black face with more moulded details than his teammates - not that you seen them underneath black. There's a noticeable lack of colour on the rest of his orange body.
This is a terrible robot mode. The right arm is the back and head of the beast and it's even less of an arm than those on Overbite. The left arm is worse - it's the back half of the the beast, complete with hindlegs and tail. The groin and thighs are the back of his beast forelegs, complete with hollow gaps in the plastic. The boots are small and gimpy, and his knees are bent back. There is some poseability here, but it's not enough to rescue Snarl from the poor kibble that is his limbs. The right shoulder is ball jointed and the beast jaw opens, giving him a claw-hand of sorts while the left shoulder swings and the elbows lifts up - there's actually a dedicated joint for this. His waist rotates and can fold, allowing him to sit down - which is unusual for a MiniCon.
I don't understand what the designer was trying to achieve here, because so little works. Everything seems to be an afterthought, but the beast mode is also poor. The arms are very kibbly, along with the legs - and it's not often robot legs are kibble. The colour scheme is lazy and I really dislike the gaps on his groin and thighs.
One of the worst MiniCons I've experienced, Snarl fails in both modes. The engineering, bodyshape and paint job fails in both mode. Almost everything is half baked - as if they got half way through designing the concept and decided to run with the concept rather than take the more sensible option of abandoning it. While neither of his teammates are great MiniCons, they both look pretty good alongside Snarl - 2/10
None that I'm aware of.
Calling this set a mixed bag would be a kind gesture. Dreadwing is the best of the bunch, although he's solid rather than great. Overbite's beast mode is nice, but the poor robot mode really hurts. Let's not talk about Snarl - he's that bad. I picked this set up on clearance - there's a good reason why they're the pegwarmers of the Classics line - and I can't say they have much to offer. A couple of good moments aren't enough to lift this set out of mediocrity - 4.5/10