Review: Transformers Combiner Wars Breakdown

Arguably the most standout member of the Stunticons, Breakdown has had a long history, including G2 Botcon exclusives, a surprise leading role in War for Cybertron, and a somewhat-controversial homage character in Prime. He’s a popular fellow, even if character-wise he’s pretty much just Red Alert but a Decepticon. Regardless, as far as design goes, Breakdown has always been my favorite Stunticon with his red and blue on off-white colors and blocky head. How does the first properly-combining Breakdown toy since G1 stand up? (Gettit? ‘Cuz he’s a leg? hahaha oh god.)

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Vehicle Mode

Originally a Lamborghini Countach, Breakdown here turns into a Lamborghini-ish car. The Countach inspirations are there, but mostly it’s just a generic wedge of a car. That being said, it’s a really nice generic wedge of a car, with a perfect off-white color and nice paint apps (though I’m not too sure about the “15RACING” or what it means). Breakdown feels mostly solid, though his back half likes to split apart a lot.

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One nice trait that Breakdown shares with his teammate Offroad is a unique integration of the Hand-Foot-Gun: Breakdown’s tabs in multiple places on his robot mode to make something resembling either a supercharger or a giant twin-barreled cannon (or both). It’s still a little silly, but it’s cleaner than just pegging it on top of the car and it actually kind of works for me. Shame the others aren’t so well-integrated.

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Transformation

Breakdown and Dead End are both somewhat similar styles of figure, but they both have unique conversions that stand out wildly compared to the other Combiner Wars Deluxes. Breakdown’s transformation is simple and intuitive, but marred with a lot of plastic tolerance issues. Some pegs are just too damn tight and make transforming him a bit of a chore. And the final product is… hm.

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Robot Mode

I… don’t think Breakdown looks good. At all. The colors are spot-on, but it feels like he has too much blue on his legs and not enough on his arms. His proportions are the main issue: they’re just awkward. His arms are thin, his shoulders are a bit narrow and far-back, his torso is a bit too long, his thighs are short, and his shins are enormous. This just plain odd nature of his crotch only makes matters worse, as the two hip ball joints don’t lock in and tend to swing down to vehicle mode position, which makes his torso even longer and his hips look tiny. The only really good thing about him is his headsculpt, which I do love.

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Articulation is mostly the same on Breakdown as the other Deluxes, with an exception in his elbows, which are double-jointed. The count is: ball-jointed neck, shoulders, elbows, hips; swivel elbow, thighs, waist, and knees. The double-jointed elbows give him some of the most posable arms in the line, though due to the nature of his legs and his body as a whole, it’s hard to get him in any sort of good pose.

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Breakdown’s weapon is one of the weakest, as well. It’s supposed to be some kind of sword-gun, and it works for the most part. Unfortunately, the peg for the gun configuration is just too damn tight to the point that it’s scary to get him to hold it. The weapon itself is oddly sculpted and just kind of doofy-looking. He also comes with the HFG, which would be fine except, unlike the others, the gun part is painted in an incredibly ugly dull purple that makes it stand out badly. I have no idea why they couldn’t color match better with the paint, much less why it had to be painted in the first place.

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Overall

Breakdown really is a disappointment and one of the first real stinkers of Combiner Wars, at least in my opinion. It doesn’t that the plastic quality on this guy is abysmal; he just feels awful. Joints aren’t loose, but he just doesn’t tab in quite right, and those hips are just terrible. He’s not an awful toy, but I really wouldn’t quite call him good. Pick him up if you’re completing your Stunticons, and I hope the QC on yours is better than mine.

Where to Buy

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