Action Toys Machine Robo MR-03 Eagle Robo Review
(Gobots Leader-1)

When my Machine Robos arrived, I immediately went to Battle Robo and dug into taking some pictures, playing around with him, and just having a good time. I loved him. He’s a great toy. And then I opened Eagle Robo… he’s fun too. I shouldn’t give Eagle Robo too hard a time. I do actually like him quite a bit, but he’s not as good. I’m a little concerned that if folks dip their toes in the water on this line, they might pick the venerable Gobots commander and then not be as satisfied as they might’ve been had they gone with Battle Robo.

First, there’s a lot to like. The robot mode looks sharp out of the box. I never had Leader-1 as a kid. I wanted to have him and I got close once we my family ran across the blue repaint in a Skaggs Grocery store years later. My parents ended up not grabbing it for me, but I at least saw it! I was happy about that. I bought a used one year later. He’s a bit of a beater, but I like to think he’s that same one I saw years ago. On a side note, I miss that Skaggs Grocery store. It’s a Ford dealership now. Woo hoo.

Visually, I really like the overall robot. I like that so much of the jet mode is visible in robot mode. I love Battle Robo, but since he’s a futuristic tank his robot mode looks mostly like a robot. Eagle Robo has a more transforming robot feel with the alt mode shining through. The high shoulders bring a good balance to the clunky legs and I like the head sculpt. The head sculpts are the big thing to get used to since they’re the most notable anime aspect of the figures, and different from the toys we remember. The only visual negative is the neck – it’s just this lone black rod. Like Leader-1’s head is just continually on a pike. It just is weird. There’s nothing sophisticated about it and it just jars an otherwise near perfect visual.

Like Tank, the upgraded articulation is one of the best things about the figure. The legs are a little blocked by all the kibble. The wings wrap around the legs but the vertical stabilizers are immobile and get in the way of the ankle on deeps poses. He can still do plenty – the transformation process gives him a second hinge in the leg that helps the ankles out, but he’s not quite as possible as Tank. The arms are just as good as Tank and the neck articulation even better. The rod is ugly, but it helps the figure be expressive (& helps you find poses where you can hide the rod entirely behind the chin.

The transformation process is where Eagle Robo lets me down a bit. In fact, I have to use the dreaded F-word to describe him: fiddly. The legs are great, they’re the most Gobot part of the figure with the wings just wrapping around and keeping it simple. The nose cone also pops over the head. Simple enough. But the arms… I’m not even sure I understand where everything tabs in. I just kind of press it altogether and hope it gets there. I still can’t get all the pegs on the underside aligned, but he holds together fine. Continue to Page 2…

13 thoughts on “Action Toys Machine Robo MR-03 Eagle Robo Review
(Gobots Leader-1)

  1. He looks good, simple design but he carries it off. Who knows, he may even be leader one day!

    Are they selling those bases separately? I can see them being a decent seller on their own.

  2. Great review, as always!

    Shame to hear this one is rather fiddly, but I’ve pretty much come to expect that with my transforming robot / vehicles these days. So long as he’s not as bad as ROTFLMAO Jetfire or the new Junkions, though, I should be okay.

    Is it just me, or is anyone else unnerved by his new head? It seems the most changed of all the new ones, and I may just do a repaint. But I’ll wait to see how it looks in-hand. It might grow on me.

    1. I think that the fault is mainly in the paint app for the head.

      If you look at the box where it’s somewhat monochrome, the head looks like they were going for ‘fighter pilot’ but the final execution looks more like ‘evil skull’

        1. I’m also partially used to him looking like a Legioss from Mospeada 😉

          (thanks to Monogram Models buying Imai tooling to cash in on the nascent ‘Robotech’ market)

  3. I’m so torn on this.

    I have very few memories of the Go-Bots, but I did have a Leader 1 as a kid. As the second born, I was often in a position there my older brother got the leader and I got the second-in-command. He got Optimus Prime, I got Hot Rod. He got Keith, I got Lance. He got Duke, I got… well, he got Duke and Flint, but I had Sgt. Slaughter. And Lt. Falcon, who I guess was kind of the Hot Rod of the GI Joe movie.

    You get where I’m going with this.

    Go-Bots was one of the few toylines where I got the leader. So I have a real fondness for the character, even if I barely remember the show.

    The new figure looks good, but I have a couple gripes. First of all, the size. At the price they go for, I’d expect something a little bigger than the $15 Transformers price point. Yes, they’re a little bit better constructed, but not triple the price worth. If I’m going to go in on a high end toy line, I expect the best, and mini-Masterpieces don’t do it for me.

    Second, the head. It might be my childhood attachment to Leader 1, but one of his defining physical characteristics was the smooth head. The extra detail they’ve added just makes it look not like Leader 1 to me. For a line that’s banking so heavily on nostalgia, that’s a fail.

    1. The price doesn’t bother me because these are imports and the price is in line with figuarts and the like.

      On the head, I don’t know why they did the extra detail on his dome.

      1. I *think* the detail was meant to be a guide for the paint apps, but it’s so heavy handed it turned into detailing. To my eyes it doesn’t convey the calm, confident look of a leader, it’s a scary thing.

        Of course Tonka just made their own crap up, I don’t think ‘Eagle Robo’ was even a significant character in Japan’s Machine Robo lore, certainly not the LEADER of the good guys. I could be wrong. 🙂

  4. When you get the Cy-Kill equivalent, can you do some pics with 4″ human figure and the bike mode? I want to see if he looks in scale with Joe and the like.

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