New Info About War For Cybertron and More from the Hasbro Preview Breakfast
Our man on the ground and Allsparker G.B.Blackrock was able to talk to John Warden and ask him questions about the Transformers brand!
In a post in our San Diego Comic Con 2018 thread, G.B.Blackrock details his conversation with John Warden, as well as a few tidbits he overheard at the breakfast!
He starts off with John Warden describing the ‘feel’ of War for Cybertron: Siege:
Besides the pictures I’ve already shared[Editor’s Note: Here], the main highlight was getting to chat briefly with John Warden (and being a bit of a “fly on the wall” for other conversations I wasn’t actively a part of, myself).
So, here’s some key points from that:
War for Cybertron: Siege is intentionally trying to capture the essence of the cartoon pilot from 1984. He frequently used the phrase “this is their last day on Cybertron” which I didn’t take literally, but rather I got the impression that he’s trying to say that this is essentially just before the ’84 group left for Earth. The weathering effect on the toys is intentional, in part to connote that point in Transformers history, but they tried to keep it to a minimum on certain figures (he specifically cited Sideswipe) if appropriate for that character’s personality (I can only imagine what that would mean if they featured Tracks in this line!).
He also tells us about the Diorama built for the Breakfast:
The diarama in the pictures was co-created by Warden and one of the Takara execs (who was there, and who I was able to thank personally for his work, but I confess that I’m unclear on his name).
Next, he talks about the new Battlemaster figure, Lionizer:
When someone asked about this at the preview, Warden commented about it being from an Action Master, but I didn’t catch the name at the time, so I’m glad to see this part confirmed. Specifically, Warden noted that there were only so many Targetmasters. I did comment at that point, telling Warden he can do as many Action Master homages as he liked. He responded to the effect of “so long as they all transform, right?” I laughed, but pointed out that I was fine either way (I know this is a minority opinion), because Action Masters weren’t just “transformers who don’t transform,” but were action figures of a specific size designed with compatible accessories and bases. In retrospect, as I type this now, I guess they were a precursor to the play pattern they’ve been doing so intentionally these past few years.
John Warden talks about the G1 reissues:
The G1 reissues already announced (and on display at the preview) are the entirety of Wave 1. If there are to be any more, Warden’s clearly not at liberty to say just yet, but he did give the standard reply that if they do well, a Wave 2 is certainly possible.
G.B.Blackrock and Warden discuss the future of the Generations toyline:
I asked about why Hasbro chose to do another trilogy on the heels of Prime Wars, and how War for Cybertron was to be differentiated from Prime Wars. Warden responded that what really worked with the Prime Wars trilogy was not only the ability to revisit specific eras of Transformers history (combiners, headmasters, etc.), but to give collectors something to look forward to, and to create a sense of anticipation about what might come next. With the War for Cybertron trilogy, Hasbro hopes to reset the bar, and one way in which they’re attempting to do this is to set a uniform scale. Robot sizes (especially) should resemble how one expects their sizes to relate to each other from past media. Ironhide may be a bit tall for a deluxe, having been somewhat tall compared to other Autobots in the cartoon, but he’s still shorter than, say, Optimus Prime or Ultra Magnus (Voyager and Leader class, respectively).
They’re not looking to have any line-wide gimmick that would interfere with the character of the robots this time, and instead focus on better articulation, for example. That said, this line does feature a line-wide combat system, wherein the Battle Masters (Micromasters and Targetmasters under a new name) feature little accessories like fire blasts or flame trails that can be used with other robots (or their weapons) to help fans create diorama or customize a specific look. This way, fans who want to keep their robots in display positions as they came out of the box and fans who prefer action poses can both find something that works for them.
Hasbro is attempting to make sure that eras other than just G1 are also homaged. Hence, Ultra Magnus’ vehicle mode is essentially is RiD vehicle mode. Ultra Magnus utilizes essentially the same technology as that used for Rodimus Prime in PotP to utilize Magnus’s white inner robot mode and give him armor constructed from the trailer. This feature will appear in other toys in the upcoming line, as well.
G.B.Blackrock asks about the Power of the Primes Poll and what other winners might have looked like:
I asked about the recent fan poll which gave us Optimal Optimus, and if they had plans in mind for what they would have done if someone else (say, Arcee or Hound) had won the poll. Warden says that they absolutely did have plans, with designs already drawn up for each, and names for the evolved forms (he wasn’t sure, but suggested something like “Arcana Magnus” for Arcee). He was especially proud of the one he’d done for Hound. I encouraged him, if they could find a way to make it happen, to release such plans to the fans at some future point, knowing that we have an interest in seeing such things. While he stressed that they don’t want to confuse casual fans, he agreed that this would be something worth showcasing some day.
He then asked about the names for the Starscream and Inferno combiners from Power of the Primes:
Finally, I asked about names for the combined forms for PotP Starscream and Inferno. While Warden was not able to recall these names, himself, he said that Matt Clark (their copy writer) is the person on staff that came up with those. Has I been able to stay for the later panels, Warden would have introduced us, but sadly I wasn’t. Sorry, but hopefully this extra nugget will help someone else track that down at some point. He did say that Elita One actually had two combiner names (much as Scattershot had both Betatron and Computron). One might have been “Elita Ultimate.”
Finally, he got a sweet grab bag of gifts for attending, which he describes:
(FYI, although I haven’t reviewed any of the items in the goodie bag that Hasbro provided in this write-up, I should mention that Hasbro did in fact give a rather generous bag free of charge as I left the breakfast. This bag contained a Star Wars Black Series Tarkin figure, a Thor figure from the 6 inch Infinity War collection, Cutthroat — which I now no longer need to buy on my own!, a pack of the TF TCG cards that are being sold at SDCC, and a few other odds and ends. I had also previously picked up a t-shirt, arm band, and sunglasses related to the upcoming Bumblebee movie. Both Hasbro and the FTC ask that those of us on the internet who comment on these events disclose this information, so hopefully this little parenthetical meets those disclosure rules.)