Transformers: Age of Extinction Magazine from Titan UK

The fine folks over at Titan UK have sent us a sample issue of their Transformers: Age of Extinction magazine. For those of you that are familiar with the format of Titan’s magazines, this one follows pretty much the same recipe – games, mazes, trivia, character biographies, and a comic book. Since most of these are obviously targeted towards a younger audience, I enlisted to help of a young Transformers fan to help me review the magazine. Read on to see what his reaction was.

Rowan, my cousin’s son, is 3 and a half which may be a little too young for some of the games – as evidenced by his “attempt” at solving the maze (you can see in the attached gallery). However he grabbed the magazine off of the coffee table before I had a chance to ask him if he wanted to look through it. He was exceptionally eager for someone to read the character biographies and comic book to him, giddily pawing through the magazine to find them. That, unfortunately, led him to the maze and art pages first. He soon forgot all about “reading” and picked up the markers to play games as well as “improve” some of the artwork printed on the pages.
After scribbling for about ten minutes, he noticed that the magazine wasn’t the only thing that came in its plastic sleeve. Indeed, there are two free gifts that come with each issue of the magazine! This issue came with a pack from the Topps Select Transformers: Age of Extinction trading card game as well as a small figurine. The figure that we received was Bumblebee from Transformers Prime, however each issue offers the chance at one of TWO figures (the other figure this month was Arcee – which the Allspark was able to acquire through a different campaign). Rowan ripped and tore at the plastic baggie that held Bumblebee, but ultimately handed him off to me to open. He then pulled Bumblebee free and instantly set to trying to move the arms and legs, which actually isn’t an option. The figurine is a static, soft PVC statue rather than an action figure. So as he was wrenching on the limbs almost to their breaking point, I had to tell him that I didn’t think they were supposed to move. To which his reply was “Why they doesn’t move?” Thinking quick, I pointed to the board game inside the magazine and told him that it was meant as a game piece for that game. That seemed to satisfy him as he them had Bumblebee hopping around the game board.
After his adventures with the game board, he took the magazine to have his mother read the character bios for Bumblebee and Stinger. He held onto the Bumblebee PVC tight while the Bumblebee biography was being read.
I mentioned the cards, well, Rowan didn’t care for them at all. After he pulled them from the sleeve he simply said “What’s this? I don’t want this.” and tossed them aside. After he left, I opened them to see just what they were about. I think they’re sort of cool, myself. Each pack of cards comes with 5 game cards, but since this was a special pack-in with Titan there was a bonus 6th card. It appears to be the standard trading card game with various stats that you compare with your opponent to decide who wins a round. I was a little surprised that the character selection isn’t limited to Transformers: Age of Extinction and didn’t expect to see the likes of Skids and Alice (and giggled slightly when the image of Alice’s human disguise was labeled as her “alt mode”).
Overall it was a great way to keep Rowan entertained while he was visiting. He loved quite a bit about it…well other than the cards of course. There were a few of the activities and trivia that he had no interest in – he didn’t know or care about who Crosshairs was and the page on actual dinosaurs didn’t hold his attention, but those that he did like had him enthralled.
One problem was that the thin paper was not easy for him to flip through – he ended up grabbing multiple pages and mangling them as he was trying to turn a single page. If the pages were heavier or glossier, it would be easier for small(er) children to flip through and interact with.
Check out our gallery of images and see if this is the sort of thing that you think your little Transformers fans will enjoy. Rowan certainly recommends it!