Unicron.com Exclusive Hasbro Interview About HasLab Transformers Unicron
It’s a moment 24 years in the making. Kevin Lukis of Unicron.com has an exclusive interview with Ben Montano, Senior Director of Global Brand Marketing for Transformers, to talk all about (what else?) HasLab Unicron! This wide ranging interview covers the many challenges in designing, crowdfunding, and manufacturing this behemoth, and future plans…
Interview highlights & topics:
• Unicron will begin shipping to (*some) backers “very soon” – within a week! They are not going out all at once, but are set to begin rollout “keeping in mind all the different parts of the country, some will get him before others.” #HasbroPulse will be in communication with backers about when, specifically you can expect to receive yours.
• Design process and unique challenges to producing something this big: Entire task force @Hasbro in partnership with @TakaraTomy. This figure is tripling the weight versus previously produced Titan figures – it’s not just as simple as making joint mechanisms bigger …
• Design decisions and priorities: Engineers started with two goals in mind: a *perfect sphere in planet mode* and have the robot be as screen accurate as possible without making portions of the robot spherical where they shouldn’t be.
• Standing without the stand!
• Changes to color, the challenges of yellow: painted vs. molded, variations in yellow plastic … prototype was more canary-yellow, decision was made, pivoting to a more orangish-hue yellow. A much appreciated update!
• The maw – changes made with the color, to preserve the long term integrity of the toy, with the maw mechanism being as complex as it is. Also, there is zero precedent for his inner maw ‘dentition’ to be solid yellow. The only reason we fans expected it, is because of the prototype… (see comparison photos in the video…)
• Other changes: paint on the mini-figures. These are SO small, that the paint would look like a paint blob, didn’t look as good.
• Companion pieces to the Ark/Unicron head stand: coming soon to HasbroPulse… Stay tuned!
• HasbroPulse UK now live, should improve European distribution for future projects.
• The stress of hitting the (8K crowdfunding) number! The psychology of “F.O.M.O.” and why it took so agonizingly long!
• Another run of this product? No!
If there ever would be a plan to re-rerelease, it would be significantly different.• Packaging Inspiration: less emphasis on MISB, keeps the focus on the toy itself. Also styrofoam storage, keeps it safe and out of harm’s way when not out on display. They considered making it “Gen Selects” this was pulled so fans who want to be completionist about Gen Selects can be, if they weren’t able to back Unicron. But still maintained visual esthetics of that packaging model.
• Goatee or soul patch?!
• Video of manufacturing process – MANY talented people had to be involved, to pull off a project this large and ambitious. 3 years in the making – from senior management at Hasbro/Takara to design, to manufacture, to distribution … this project tested the teams at Hasbro and Takara to do something that’s never been done before!
• What’s next?! Taking requests for a next HASLAB Transformers project?!?!
You can check out their Facebook post here. And be sure to visit Unicron.com, though if you’ve been in the fandom a long time you’ve probably been there many times before. In today’s age of fan wikis, Unicron.com is still one of the best places to find toy galleries, screenshots, instructions, and packaging art. Check them out.
And be sure to check us out as well in our Transformers forum, on our Discord Server, @AllsparkNews on Twitter, or our Facebook group!