Mini-Warriors Rager
& Spray Review

With the Transforming Collections Kickstarter wrapping up this weekend, I thought it’d be a good time to get to a review I’ve had on the backburner: iGear’s Mini-Warriors Spray & Rager. I don’t own a lot of “Third Party” TFs, but the appeal of modern mini-vehicles is hard to resist.

Third party accessories & figures fascinate me. In a way, it’s a little silly because the idea of a company making an add-on kit or something to be used in conjunction with another company’s product isn’t new at all. The Colorforms Outer Space Men came into their own as a beloved property, but germinated as an adjunct to Major Matt Mason. Technology is quickly changing the landscape of these “conjunction” products though; allowing smaller and smaller companies to create high quality product. That’s the part that’s fascinating.

Every collector knows another collector who, with skills & tools we don’t all possess, can have pretty much whatever character they want in their collection. And, in a way, it’s that nugget that has grown into a flourishing market. This is especially true with Transformers. In addition to simple add-on kits or accessories that improved official toys, Transformers collectors are getting – rightly or wrongly – the ever-growing option to buy more and more completely new figures from third party companies. I find myself tempted by so many, TFC Toys Project Uranos being the latest drool-inducing third party item that makes my wallet cringe & hide behind the sofa.

Now this ever growing option does include an ethics test that seems largely sidestepped by the collecting community. Does this IP theft help the brand? Does it hurt Hasbro & Takara? I don’t know the answer to that. I haven’t really been pressed too because the costs largely keep me from picking up many of the third party items.

Note: I missed this while taking pics, but Spray is slightly mistransformed. The blue flaps on the roof are not completely pushed down.

If you’re familiar with the site, it’s pretty clear that comic book toys and Masters of the Universe take up a lot of my toy budget. And in those collector bases, money seems a little tighter than it does for Transformers. As MOTU has grown into a $500+ a year franchise many collectors have grumbled as their budgets are under strain. But Transformers collectors, particularly those that pick up third party items, seem to have larger toy budgets. As much as I want that Uranos, I just can’t see myself fitting into the budget at $500 or more.

With that in mind, I’ve avoided many third party items. iGear’s Medical Specialist is calling to me these days, but I could pick up plenty of other cool stuff for $100. Toy World’s Grind Rod, a modern Throttlebot, is similarly pulling at me, but $60 seems steep. iGear did manage to get me on some smaller items though with their Mini-Warrior line.

If your childhood was anything like mine, you had parents that worked hard and spoiled you when they could. While I loved Transformers as a kid, they were pricier than many of the alternatives back then, so my youthful collection consisted more of smaller Transformers than large ones. Metroplex, Scorponok, & Fortress Maximus were cool and all, but a quick check of my toy box was more likely to reveal cassettes, Throttlebots, and the Mini-Vehicles. As I mentioned in my 2010 Seaspray Review, Seaspray was one of my favorite childhood toys.

So iGear’s Mini-Warriors held a special appeal and at $15 a piece for the first two, Spray & Rager, I took a chance and picked up my first full TF third party figures (my first TF third party purchase was the new Kup heads, also from iGear).

When the package arrived a little while later, I was surprised by the quality of the two figures. Both the figures come boxed with a nice artwork and a short bio and diagram of the toy on the back. The figures come packaged in vehicle mode on a tray with a spot for their weapon(s) and a little collectible plastic card that features the box art on one side and the diagram with the familiar bar graph rating system on the back. Continue to Page 2…

38 thoughts on “Mini-Warriors Rager
& Spray Review

  1. how does they stack up, QC wise? plastic feels solid, articulation is generally tight, etc…? QC is the area i think i worry about most w/ any purchase from a new company (new to me, i mean) thanks to my exposure to knockoff toys. some companies go the mile and are every bit as solid as the real deal but some totally phone that in and they’re a disaster in plastic.

    1. Plastic is great. iGear’s Mini-Warriors — these two so far — are both fantastic pieces. Rager’s my favorite of the two (and I now have three versions of that mold).

      1. I hate being that guy that wants to line up the “mold rainbows”, but I’m beyond jealous that you have all three!

        I’ll be living the dream through your book though. 🙂

      1. it’s always good to hear that. i love it when a company really takes pride in their work and does things right.

  2. THIS is my main Transformers Classics Seaspray. Robot mode is fantastic, as is plastic quality. The hovercraft mode is good, but could fit together a little more seamlessly. But I love this series. They’re sturdy, beefy figures that actually feel like toys, and I think they’re better than Hasbro’s own take on the minibots. Can’t wait for Beachcomber.

  3. You and I had similar childhoods then — my collection consisted of a lot of smaller Bots. My mother certainly enjoyed spoiling me, but money was tight growing up (heck, still is!). So while I had friends who had the complete set of Constructicons, Soundwave and all his tapes, I had little guys like Sea Spray, but even to this day he is still one of my favorite TF’s.

    1. Yep, exactly. I had tons of cassettes, but never had Soundwave or Blaster. And I feel like the only guy on the planet who didn’t have Devastator sometimes.

      My parents did really spoil me one year with Defensor & Bruticus. That was an awesome Christmas (and Primus help me if TFC makes a Defensor…)

    2. Much later I found Soundwave at a yard sale or flea market… the guy was loose as hell, had no accessories, and his tape deck cover was broken off… no cassettes either, still, so happy just to have Soundwave.

      One mini-Transformer I still have memories of getting today was Backstreet.

  4. Nice review. These guys are great little mini-bots. As much as I like my Voyager class and larger figures it’s the mini-bots that get the most play. The sturdy little punks fit easily into my camera bag and make great subjects for impromptu photo shoots while out hiking. I’m definitely looking forward to Gears and Cosmos that should be releasing soon.

    For more mini-bot fun y’all should check out Perfect Effect’s Scouting Force X. Best 3rd Party notReflector toy I’ve seen.

    1. They do a lot of copyright infringing, most notably with their “masterpiece” lines. I’m all for 3rd parties, even if they use someone else’s design (Mastermind Creations using Guido Guidi’s Hearts of Steel Shockwave comes to mind), as long as it’s something obscure that Hasbro hasn’t/won’t do.

      3rd parties need to have creativity if they wan’t to get away from the stigma that some people have of them being a negative part of the hobby, and unfortunately iGear’s originality isn’t the greatest :(.

  5. These look like cool updates, but out of my price range.

    I had Huffer, and I recall he was pretty basic transform: legs pulled out, smokestacks pulled out and flipped for arms (backwards looking as they were), and the cab shifted up and pegged into the shoulders to reveal the head. His only real point of note was that he was a mini-Prime or even Mini-Magnus. I do recall him in the cartoon helping out ONCE by hauling a severely injured Optimus’ trailer back to the Ark. Beyond that, he was just another grunt.

    I had a mix of the classic TFs: Prowl (cuz dad was a COP!) and Starscream were my first at Xma$. One “came from Grandma”, but we had found the presents weeks before and I had already removed the catalog to pore over right away! LOL
    Prime came the following summer at my birthday and I think I had a couple mini-bots by then, including Laserbeak/Rumble and later the lion/dude pair and the ape-combo, but I never did get Soundwave or Blaster, even tho I was practically begging for SW the next Xma$. I think that’s the year my mom raided, er, “borrowed” from my savings account from my fair money to buy me my Apple //c? (with BUILT IN DISK DRIVE!!! which we also found early! LOL but hey, Firstborn got to buy his first car that year. sisters were SOL, tho.)

    btw, did anyone else notice Target upped the deluxe price from $14.99 to $15.49? I had finally talked myself into buying WFC Shockwave, too! might as well save a few pennies at WM, now. Still not sure about WFC Jazz, tho.

      1. It’s the economy. Raw materials, labor, and shipping costs have been climbing constantly; I deal with this at work all of the time and it’s a huge pain.

  6. Dude Noisy, Grapple’s all askew. The big panels can swivel to behind his shoulders and those flaps on his forearms fold flush against them. I can understand why Huffer’s looking at him funny.

    As for the iGear’s offerings, I too got acquainted through their great Kup head. I got these two little pieces of awesome, and will likely get sucked into getting Cogz and UFO too. I picked up their Weapon Specialist, and it’s basically the Ironhide Hasbro refused to give us times ten. I’m a bit in agreement with daytime ninja regarding their “masterpiece” figures, as they’re so blatantly shrinks of Hasbro sculpts, but it’s almost sad that they’re so much more capable when they do their own designing.

  7. Excellent review, and great pictures. I own both of these, and look forward to the UFO and Hench arriving soon. The plastic quality on these two is sturdy and very good, the engineering pretty damn good, and really, the only thing that would improve these is weapons storage capability. I had no idea they made other repaints of these, which is cool, but I’m content with what I have. (When and whence did the term “colourways” emerge, anyway? Suddenly, everyone seems to be using it. Did I miss a meeting?)

    I used to object to these third-party toys, for the usual intellectual property infringement reasons, but a few things changed my mind.

    Firstly, Hasbro ain’t in any rush to make these characters. We’ll see a bazillion more versions of Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Megatron, and Starscream before we get one of our inexplicably favourite background characters from when we were kids or “the ones we need to complete the reconstruction of the roster.” Also, when they make cool, easy-to-produce, team-completing characters as exclusives that are only available to Americans . . . that ain’t cool.

    Secondly, when Hasbro does make a character that isn’t one of “The Big Four” I mentioned above, they often do it . . . weirdly, and never again, unless there’s a new series or movie coming out, and then in a wildly different style. I honestly can’t be bothered with transforming the “Universe” Ironhide and Ratchet, they’re so fiddly and bizarre. So I’m planning on saving up and splurging on the third-party versions next year, perhaps for my birthday. And the Baysplosions version of Outback . . . not my goblet of mead.

    Thirdly, the quality of these non-Hasbro, non-Takara robots is getting amazingly good, vastly improved the from deformed, crumbly, frangible knock-offs of two or three decades ago. I only ever owned Inferno and Twin-Tiwst as a kid, but always wanted a Devastator. Now I own an almost two-foot-tall unofficial look-alike, of a quality that beats some official products, and with more articulation at every level than I thought possible. With each individual robot as big as a Voyager-class figure, slap six of ’em together, and you have something that’s bigger and heavier than a baby. That’s some serious toyage.

    Fourthly, now that there is some competition for our collecting funds, mayhap it will make the big companies start taking notice of what we want, especially if we show them we’re willing to pay a ridiculous price for something they could have made, only cheaper. The competition may be good for the hobby.

    Finally, for many reasons, I’m bitter and want to lash out. So I’m petty. But I have neat toys. };D

  8. I have these two guys and wish I could get the others coming up. They take their 80’s predecessors up quite a few notches and are far truer to the cartoon versions than Takara’s early stuff ever proved to be.

Comments are closed.