Hasbro Botcon Product Panel Summary – Rescue Force, Bruticus, Mini-cons and Sky-Lynx, Oh My!

The crown jewel event for Botcon is the Hasbro product panels in which developers, designers and marketing get together to answer questions, share stories and talk about what’s to come. Present today were Jerry Jivoin toy marketing, Ben Montano director of marketing and licensing, John Warden design manager, Mark Weber manager of global brand development for GI Joe, Mark Baha model artist, Rob Masiello. As always, The Allspark was there to cover it live and here’s a summary of what we learned.IMG_20150620_122612547_HDR

Rescue Bots
Although geared towards the younger crowd, the Rescue Bots segment of the Transformers brand has no shortage of fans. Here’s what was announced for the future.

  • Rescue Force Recruits with new characters including High Tide Rescue Rig and Salvage and Blurr

Robots in Disguise
After moving on fairly quickly from the Rescue Bots, Hasbro dove right into Robots in Disguise. After showing the “Someone’s Back” poster featuring Optimus Prime, they showed a brief video compilation of Bumblebee failing at his catch phrase.
The downloadable App is also getting updated with new character unlocks including Night Ops Bumblebee, Gold Armor Grimlock, Ironhide and Prowl. The Robots in Disguise line summary breakdown includes Legion Class, 1-step changers, Warrior class, 3-step changers, Tiny Titans, Mini-Cons, Mega Optimus Prime, Super Bumblebee. New Legion wave 4 will include Night Ops Bumblebee and Alpine Strike Sideswipe, who is a Red Alert homage. 1-step Wave 4 has Night Ops Bumblebee. Warriors wave 4 has Night Ops Bumblebee and Gold Armor Grimlock. 3-step changers wave 4 will include Sideswipe. Tiny Titans wave 1 in blind bags has a number of new guys, including Devastator. And the Mini-cons, where were introduced in episode 12 are making a comeback to store shelves this fall.

Wave 1 of those guys will be Buzzsaw and Torpedo and for wave 2 we’ll see Velocirazor, Ratbat, Sandsting, and Beastbox. These Mini-Con waves also each include one extra part per character which will allow you to build a bonus Energon Mini-Con figure.
So much new stuff here it’s hard to process but here’s what we can expect to see. Of course we’ve told you about Transformers Devastation from Activision coming in October.  In addition to what we already know it was revealed there will be more playable characters to appear and more information next month.
The game will be available in both a retail box and as a digital only download.
The all female combiner Victorion was voted on by fans and had over 225,000 votes world wide. As the first ever all-female combiner team, she’ll be bringing a lot of different things to the Autobot team. She’s not an ordinary Autobot, and has the sense of being a lone Wrecker with her own agenda, made up of 6 tough females who defy the world they’re in.  They’re from the Sea of Rust and are described as a misfit team of Autobots.
Combiner Wars – Galvatronus was confirmed for this fall as well as an Autobot team that includes Ironhide, Mirage, Prowl, Sunstreaker, Legends Rodimus, and Voyager Battle Core Optimus, who is a white redeco of the Voyager Optimus Prime. The cars are repaints of the Stunticons.
Battle Core Optimus will arrive in Wave 4 and has a new had inspired by the Japanese character Star Convoy. Together they combine into Optimus Maximus.

As we’ve seen in leaks, Leader Starscream with the crown is coming as well as Bruticus. He’s made up of  Vortex, Brawl, Swindle, Blastoff, Legends class Shockwave, and Voyager Onslaught. A running change will have the G1 animated version.  So you can get either show or toy deco. From the slides it looks like  Onslaught, is from Hot Spot with major remolding, Vortex from Alpha Bravo and Brawl is an all-new mold. Blast Off is an airplane, a VTOL and Swindle is a new mold. Legends tape Buzzsaw, Shockwave, Chop Shop, and Pipes from Huffer.
The sizes classes of these new combiners were discussed and we were told they made them this size because of fan feedback and comments over the years from previous Generations versions.
The big reveal of the evening was of course Sky-Lynx. He’s a Voyager and along with the deluxes Wheeljack, Hound, Smokescreen and Trailbreaker they will combine into Sky Reign whose head is a gold lynx.  Legends Wreck Gar will be included in the team repainted from Groove.
A soft release date for Devastator has also been revealed as coming out this fall. They worked really hard to get the shade of green just right for the team.
The team also confirmed that it was always intended that the comics (rather than the cards) come with the deluxe figures in Combiner Wars. They just liked the comics better for that price point.
No real news on the fate of Kre-O in the US as to whether the line is dead or not. Just a ‘stay tuned’.
And of course what Botcon panel would be complete without someone bringing up Third Party? When asked if the third party stuff influenced Hasbro’s marketing at all, the answer was a resounding “No.” The things Hasbro makes come from a place of seeing what a tremendous fan base there is and they do what they can for the fans, not because someone else made another product. And the Generations line in particular was cited as being something with the intention of providing what people love at a price point they can afford.
When asked about the Titan Wars backdrop there was a lot of hemming, hawing and smiling as they pretended to know nothing. Odds are that reveal will be held back until SDCC.
All in all it was a great panel with confirmation on a lot of things we’ve seen in leaks and some awesome new reveals. You can check out the panel in it’s entirely here along with the slides and check out the Hasbro Booth photos here.
In the past, we’ve gotten high quality images of each slide from Hasbro so when we get those arrive we’ll update this summary with those.