Rarely does a Transformer “wow” me in both its bot and alternate mode. Most of the time a new Transformer will come to me in its car mode, and I will change it into its robot form and rarely go back (unless I’m doing a review, and even then that’s why I invented the quick review so I don’t have to). I’ve seen my fair share of cars, trucks, h-tanks, and planes. This may be why Beast Wars was so much fun at the time because those alt-modes were way different, but even then one mode was generally sacrificed for the better of the other. Mastermind Creations had quite a task ahead of them making a combiner, which generally has to sacrifice two modes for the better of the giant robot, that can look good in every form.
If I was independently rich I would make it rain over MMC, and probably buy two or three of every robot in their Feral Rex (not-Predaking) combiner team. Unfortunately I also need to feed, house, and dress my family so that aspiration is not in the cards for me. I will eventually have to decide if I want to display them all as individual robots or the combined (and quite impressive) Feral Rex. The good news is that the full Feral Rex will not be complete until around Spring of 2014, so I do have plenty of time to play around with and get to know the individual bots before “combiner time” hits.
You will notice that Bovis is labeled “R-03” because he is the third in MMC’s Reformatted line. Realistically he’s the second because R-02 Talon has had his share of delays. The first figure in the Reformatted line was Hexatron, and you can see we liked him quite a bit. Thus far Reformatted looks to have a very strong lineup, and it will be interesting to see where Mastermind Creations takes it after Feral Rex is complete.
MMC really knows how to make a first impression with their product. Bovis comes in a beautiful opening window box showing various shots of the toy you are going to get. The inside is packed with Bovis in his robot form, his two guns (Catalytic Carbine), two electro-daggers, the instructions (which also include a comic), a bio and tech spec trading card, and the feet and fist for Feral Rex (which combine into a Twin Motor Launcher). He lives up to his nickname of “Supply Specialist” with all of the packed in accessories. On top of that, you never have to worry about losing any of them because Bovis can carry all of them in both his bull and robot forms.
It can’t be said enough that Bovis looks great in both of his forms. He even looks good as a leg if you just want to leave him like that until the rest of the robots arrive. I’m not sure why you would but the option is always there! Going into bull mode is a fairly easy transformation with a couple of steps that can get confusing. I think the biggest one is how to flip his bot-mode feet the opposite way so that they clip onto the underside of the leg. The instructions are a bit vague so it may take a couple tries, and it also feels like it shouldn’t work but then snaps into place. You also want to make sure the bags hanging off his belt are positioned correctly, otherwise you’ll find yourself unfolding the legs to fix it.
The only other annoyance is that I can’t seem to lock the front legs into position when the instructions tell me they should. It’s not that big of a deal because he stands on them anyway which holds them in place.
I really have gotten a lot of enjoyment out of his combination bull head and robot face plate. It’s easy enough to flip the bull head up while he is in robot mode to make him a giant cow that walks on two legs. Then you can go a step further and if you open his mouth his Bovis face is exposed. This can be a bit of a bummer in his bull mode because the face is visible when his mouth is open. It’s just impossible to get away from that crazy facial expression!
Bovis is everything you could want out of an official or third-party Transformer. Mastermind Creations is going to blow people away when their take on Predaking is finished, and in the mean time we get to enjoy some amazing individual robots. Bovis was a great start for this combiner team because he has everything: accessories, a great sculpt, amazing modes, and a wonderful all around presentation. MMC may have even set the bar TOO high with the initial figure in the series. Only time will tell!