Countdown to SDCC – What to Expect?
San Diego Comic-Con 2015 is nearly upon us, and Hasbro’s Generations panel on Thursday 9th July will no doubt be the talk of the Transformers fandom. But what can we expect to see? Read on for a look at some likely candidates to be revealed.
Perhaps the product most certain to be revealed is Victorion, the result of Hasbro’s Fan-Built Combiner process – her Fan-Built predecessor, Windblade, was revealed at SDCC 2013, and the Combiner Hunters one-shot comic which will be her debut fictional appearance is set to be given away free with purchases at Hasbro’s SDCC booth.
We got our first glimpse at Victorion in a recent USA Today preview of Combiner Hunters, which revealed that her torso will use the Hot Spot mold, with the Groove mold as the Legends partner. Two of the limbs will be “twin” helicopters from the Alpha Bravo figure, whilst the other two were described as race cars, with at least one seeming to be the Dead End mold.
Given that Victorion is entirely retools/redecoes, it’s possible that Hasbro will already have hand-painted prototypes to show at their SDCC panel. At the very least, we can expect to see art of all six members and to learn their names.
Moving beyond Combiner Wars, it’s also possible that we might see something of Titan Wars, the enigmatic line teased by a Hasbro backdrop at BotCon. There we saw schematic-style art of a mysterious shuttle-like Headmaster, a Headmaster Blaster figure with a third music stage mode, and a retool of Titan Class Metroplex as Fortress Maximus, complete with Cerebros and Spike.
From what we’ve seen, it appears that the overarching theme of Titan Wars is base modes and Headmaster figures. We’ve also seen leaked store listings for several cassette partners in Legends Class – Rewind, Stripes, Rumble and Ravage – along with the full reveal of Buzzsaw at BotCon, suggesting that Soundwave is incoming too. Given the seeming scale of the figures, it seems likely that Blaster (and Soundwave) may be released in the Leader Class pricepoint. This would make them large enough to both make the Headmaster feature viable and to fit Legends Class figures inside. It’s possible that Titan Wars may run alongside Combiner Wars in 2016, with Deluxe and Voyagers and some Legends continuing to combine, whilst Leader, other Legends, and the Titan Class Fortress Maximus using the Titan Wars branding.
Also on the table is the Combiner Wars Generation 2 Superion giftset, a packaged sample of which was teasingly revealed by a fan some months ago. Assuming this set is due to be released before the end of the year, SDCC seems like the most likely venue for it to be officially revealed.
Finally, there are a small number of other mysteries that SDCC might shed some light on. Firstly, Hasbro’s BotCon panel noted that there will be a second Voyager Class figure released alongside Onslaught in 2016 wave 1. Precedent suggests that this is likely to be a figure like Optimus Prime or Cyclonus, who is intended to ‘borrow’ Deluxe limb figures rather than having their own specific team.
Also shown during the BotCon panel was the silhouette of another combiner due for spring 2016:
There’s not much that can be identified from the silhouette, although the legs appear to be the Breakdown and Dragstrip figures, whilst the long rifle calls to mind that of Silverbolt. The prime candidate for their identity is probably Computron, with a store listing for a Voyager Scattershot having previously surfaced. Lightspeed could be a new-head retool of the Wheeljack version of the Breakdown toy, whilst the Dragstrip figure could be a replacement for Afterburner or Afterburner with a new alt-mode.