View Poll Results: Worth buying?

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Thread: Toy Review - SHOUKI (Masterpiece)

  1. #1
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    Default Toy Review - SHOUKI (Masterpiece)

    TRAINBOT SHOUKI
    Series - Masterpiece
    Size/class - N/A
    New/remould/redeco - New
    Wave - MPG-01
    Released here - N/A (Japan, late June 2022)
    Approximate Retail Price - 19800JPY ($215)
    Approximate Size - 18cm
    Allegiance - Autobot
    Sub-Group - Trainbot
    Alt-mode - Series 0 Shinkansen (bullet train)
    Main Features/Gimmicks - HO scale (16.5mm gauge) train mode, combines with fellow MP Trainbots to form Raiden
    Main Colours - eggshell white, blue, grey
    Main Accessories - Mach Laser gun, x2 railway track parts, shield, flight stand connector, x2 seats

    Train mode: MP & G1 [size="1](actually Diaclone; close enough)[/size]


    Bullet train mode side view


    Front end


    Rear end


    The shield can be folded and stored inside the driver's compartment. However, I find that the front halves of the cockpit don't sit flush with the shield inside.


    Seats can also be installed with an MP-scale human figure. The cockpit halves do close up nicely and sit flush. According to tfwiki, the new Diaclone pilots can also sit on these seats.


    In train mode attached to MP Tracks' flight stand. The railway parts have slots for the armature from MP-52 Starscream's flight stand; but I don't own MP-52 (nor any repaints), and I'm not going to buy any of them just for that armature.


    Robot mode with gun and shield


    High angle and rear shot of robot mode. One challenge was the cockpit section. This is a detachable accessory on the G1 toy, but TakaraTOMY have chosen to make it non-detachable, thus it relies on an in-built armature to have it swing from front to back and attach to said back. It's somewhat reminiscent of how MP Laserwave has his gun barrel becoming the robot backpack without ever being removed. I do appreciate the cleverness and ambition on opting to do this!


    Close-up shots


    MP & G1 comparison, robot mode


    Kicking balance test


    Robot mode on flight stand


    Box; rear includes information about the history of the Series 0 bullet train.




    Overall
    Presumably for trademark reasons, TakaraTOMY has called this toy Trainbot Shouki instead of just "Shouki." If you're not sure about how to pronounce this name, say "shore-key." This toy also retains the G1 toy's original dual Functions of both "Light Speed Commander" and "Trainbot Leader." Although MPG Shouki shows both Functions on the front of the box, whereas both the 1987 and 1990 releases of G1 Shouki only display "Light Speed Commander" on the front of the box, with the secondary Function of "Trainbot Leader" only displayed on the tech specs bio (which is admittedly the back of the box).

    I gotta be honest; I almost forgot that this toy is a gestalt. It wasn't until I sat down and started typing this review that I remembered! And this tells me just how good this toy is as a stand alone Transformer action figure. TakaraTOMY have done really well in creating a bulky robot mode from a sleek bullet train mode. It's not quite as bulky as the cartoon model, but it's pretty damn close. The forearm panels are also inaccurate to G1 as they are parts of the sides of the train instead of the roof, but I personally think it looks better, as the white and blue helps to break up the otherwise all grey arms. The paint ops and over aesthetics of this toy are just gorgeous. The level of detailing on the sculpt in both bullet train and robot mode is also quite exquisite.

    The 16.5mm HO gauge scale is a neat idea, as it means that the MP Trainbots can fit on any HO gauge model railway tracks. This is also a throwback to the G1 toys who are N gauge scale (9mm). The Diaclone Train Robo come with their own railway tracks, just like MPG, but the Transformers Trainbots did not. I also love how all the train/robot parts are self contained. My G1 Shouki is missing his chest piece, but it's cool to know that this will never happen with MP Shouki. And likewise, nobody will ever lose the front section either.

    I haven't transformed mine into his Raiden component mode yet. That's something that I'm not going to do until after I've completed the set. But as a stand-alone Transformer; in terms of an action figure robot and train, MP Shouki is a great figure. Pricey, yes, but this is technically a triple-changer (robot, train, torso). I'm a big fan of gestalt members who are just great toys on their own. Highly recommended.

  2. #2
    KELPIE is offline Rank 6 - Dedicated Member
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    I have no interest in this guy but I really hope it does well for TakaraTOMY.

    Sadly I quietly think the Moon Studios guys have a better aesthetic (not that I'm planning on getting them either).

  3. #3
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    More pics and thoughts about MPG Shouki. Thanks to dirge for letting me photograph his better condition/complete G1 Shouki.

    G1 & MP w/ their respective train tracks.

    Correction from my previous post: the black 9mm/N gauge tracks were only included with the Diaclone Train Robot, not the G1 Trainbots. The toy photographed here though is a G1 Shouki with the Diaclone Tokaido Shinkansen Train Robo's tracks. So the HO gauge tracks are an homage to Shouki's Diaclone roots rather than the G1 toy, as is apparently the ability for post 2016 Diaclone pilots to sit on Shouki's seats (which should mean that those Diaclone pilots can also sit inside MP10, MP Ultra Magnus etc.). Neither dirge nor myself own any 2016 Diaclone pilots to test this.

    G1 and MP robot mode comparison, front. G1 Shouki really does have ridiculously oversized fists.


    G1 and MP robot mode comparison, back. G1 Shouki's stocky build results in the front compartment backpack sticking up much higher. MP Shouki's longer body not only means that the back kibble doesn't stick up as far, but is also more cartoon-like (as is the running theme with MPs).


    G1 and MP close ups.

    The G1 toy has two grey pylons on the shoulders, which are actually connectors that attach Shouki to Kaen when they form Raiden's torso. The cartoon model reimagined these connectors as some kind of tubes or vents. MP Shouki has these shoulder pylons purely as a decorative piece that attaches around the back of the head. It serves no purpose other than to add this extra level of cartoon-like detail.

    The shield can fold up and store inside the backpack. The "Mach Laser" gun also attaches to the back of the left leg.


    Something that's not apparent in photos is the heft of this toy, thanks to the trucks, wheels and abdomen being made of die-cast metal. It doesn't seem like much, but they add a surprising additional amount of weight to the figure.

  4. #4
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    I've only had time to appreciate this figure in train mode, but WOW it's really really nice - very glad I picked these ones over the Moon Studios, they are the first set of TFs that might actually end up displayed in alt mode! The inclusion of the track is a really nice feature.
    The heft is very real - I've seen some complaining about the size, but the feel is miles beyond that of a standard TF figure (although this is my first MP figure so I don't have anything to compare to!)

    Very keen to fiddle with it more tomorrow.

  5. #5
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    So, can the wheels on Shouki in train mode turn with the train tracks?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by High_Q View Post
    So, can the wheels on Shouki in train mode turn with the train tracks?
    Both G1 and MP Shouki have scale model train wheels with outward facing cones and inner flanges that contact the rails. This allows rigidly fixed train wheels to go around curved tracks, just like on actual trains.

    Reference: The science behind how train wheels work.

    P.S.: G1 Omega Supreme also works the same way (albeit different track/wheel design).

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoktimusPrime View Post
    Both G1 and MP Shouki have scale model train wheels with outward facing cones and inner flanges that contact the rails. This allows rigidly fixed train wheels to go around curved tracks, just like on actual trains. ...

    Reference: The science behind how train wheels work.
    Thanks! This was something i have wanted to know about but not enough to do a Google search.

  8. #8
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    Correction: dirge's "G1" Shouki is also a Diaclone; but obviously in better condition than mine. This site has photos of the 1987 G1 Trainbots, and as far as I can tell the only difference between Diaclone Tokaido Train Robo and G1 Shouki is the rub sticker. According to tfwiki, the 1990 re-release of the G1 Trainbots have no rubsigns, and the photo of the G1 Shouki toy (even on the 1987 entry) shows no rubsign, so I suspect that tfwiki must have photographed a 1990 Shouki (although they do show photos of a boxed 1987 and 1990 Shouki).

    Quote Originally Posted by High_Q View Post
    Thanks! This was something i have wanted to know about but not enough to do a Google search.
    Heh, it is something that may be counterintuitive for those of us who don't work with tracked vehicles, as when we turn a car or bicycle etc., we turn the front wheel(s) for the rest of the vehicle to follow suit. Although the weird thing with bicycles is that you have to turn in the opposite direction of where you want the bike to actually turn first before turning it in the intended direction. It's something that we all do subconsciously whenever we ride a bike, but as this video demonstrates, it's actually impossible to turn a bicycle to the intended direction without turning it in the opposite direction first! If you want to make a left turn on a bicycle and you only turn the handlebar to the left, you'll actually fall over!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by High_Q View Post
    So, can the wheels on Shouki in train mode turn with the train tracks?
    Nope, straight tracks only

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krayt View Post
    Nope, straight tracks only
    I realised that i phrased my original question poorly. I asked about wheels but really was curious whether the bogies on Shouki are able to rotate on their axes in altmode.

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