Review by JoshB
Choudenji Machine Voltes V (超電磁マシーン ボルテスＶ)
The box is your standard SOC box (9” x 4” x 14”). It’s a bit bigger than the Combattler V box, but not as big as the Dancouga box. Inside are two trays. The Styrofoam tray holds the volt machines in place, and has a cool cover with retro box art. The second tray is clear plastic for all the accessories. Also included is a beautiful color manual, with transformation instructions.
Voltes V consists of 5 Volt machines that combine to form the mighty Voltes V.
Volt Crewzer is the smallest Volt Machine, and forms the head of Voltes V. It’s all plastic, and features moveable landing gear, opening cockpit, removable wing blades, and small missiles that show if you tilt the cockpit forward.
Volt Bomber forms the arms of Voltes V. The upper arms are metal, but that’s about it. The landing gear is removable and rests on the stand when not in use. The front landing gear retracts into the body.
Volt Panzer forms the chest of Voltes V. It features real rubber tank treads, articulated claws, and a small door that opens below the cockpit. The entire body of this vehicle is metal.
Volt Frigate forms the legs of Voltes V. The lower legs and part of the waist is metal. The Volt Frigate features landing gear and spring loaded turrets.
Volt Lander forms the feet of Voltes V. Each vehicle features spring loaded wheels, chrome drills, and moveable antennae.
Assembling Voltes is almost self-explanatory. The lander separates and clicks into the bottom of the frigate. Fold the tank treads around the back of the Panzer and attach to the top of the frigate. Unfold the Bomber and insert into the top of the panzer. Slide the sleeves down and pull out the fists. Unfold the Crewzer and attach to the Bomber via a magnetic joint.
The combined voltes is sturdy and quite articulate. There is a suprising range of motion in the legs and arms. Unfortunately, there is very little movement in the head, and no articulation in the waist. The toy holds pretty much any pose; nothing seems loose or flimsy.
Voltes comes with a ton of accessories:
- Gatling Missiles – These missiles clip into the hollow arm of Voltes V. Be careful, as those missiles do come off. You don’t want to lose one.
- Chain Knuckles – This is a chain assembly that clips into the hollow arm of Voltes V. It has a long metal chain that is attached to a mace-like weapon at the end. In the show this is supposed to shoot, but here it does not.
- Voltes Bazooka - Voltes’ right arm can be bent to reveal a cannon. The cannon slides out, but be careful not to pop the hand off in the process.
- Choudenji Strings – These yellow strips are actually supposed to come from Voltes’ belt. To replicate this effect, the yellow belt piece is actually removable and the yellow tab fits into the waist.
- Choudenji Goma – These spinning tops can connect to the end of the Choudenji Strings to lash out at enemies. You have to actually take the top apart to attach it to the strings. (I wasn’t aware of this when I did the video review!)
- Tenkuu Ken - Also known as “Lightning Sword” or “Laser Sword”, This is Voltes’ most prominent weapon. In the show, the Tenkuu ken would appear from the chest of Voltes V, with the red emblem becoming the hilt. To replicate this, Bandai created a folding Tenkuu ken, that can unfold and become the full-sized sword. Unfortnately this sword is flimsy, so Bandai has also provided us with a full sized solid chrome Tenkuu ken. There is also a replacement chest part to insert into the cavity left by the sword.
- Taka Mecha – Otherwise known as “Mechanical Eagle”, this red bird-like mecha can attach to voltes’s back. An assembly attaches to the bottom that also has a space for the small energy controlling device. In the show, the Taka Mecha delivered the energy controlling device to Voltes V so it could fire the Choudenji Ball weapon. This whole assembly fits into the back of Voltes by opening a small door and moving the tank treads to the side.
- Variant hands – The hands that come attached to voltes arms are nicely articulated, but look too small in robot mode. By adding caps to the arms, you can attach any one of 3 different fists to each arm. Voltes V comes with sets of open hands, closed hands, and sword holding hands. Unfortunately, the sword is too heavy for the wrist connection and tends to droop a little.
- Stand – The stand is nothing special – there is a place for each accessory on it, but no nameplate. Some of the accessories, like the Choudenji Strings, the small chrome landing gear, and the blades for the Crewzer, will fall off instantly if you bump it just a little.
I think this is the best SOC combiner yet. There are a few things that Bandai could have done better, but they are really small things. I would have liked to have seen more articulation in the head and waist, I would have liked Bandai to do something about the pegs left on the waist, and I wish they were consistant with their use of nameplates on the stands. I am not as surprised about the lack of firing gimmicks.
The Soul of Chogokin Voltes V was released May 20, 2006, with a retail price of 16,590 Yen.
|Posted 7 June, 2006 - 09:07 by JoshB|