TRANSFORMERS: PLATINUM EDITION (HASBRO)
“Ultra Magnus is an inspiration to the Autobots under his command, and a source of terror for the Decepticons who fight against him. His ancient hammer – a mighty artifact known as the Forge of Solus – is a symbol of strength with which he defends Autobot ideals. The thunderous strike of this incredible hammer has been known to topple even the greatest Decepticon warriors.”
While Transformers: Animated was certainly a success, the cartoon proper was partially financed by, and therefore partially owned by, Cartoon Network. Hasbro was, at the time, looking to get into their own side of the media thing, launching their own television network, the Hub. Along with re-runs of some of the older Hasbro-based shows, they also had some original programming, including a new animated series, Transformers: Prime. Joining the show in its third season was my boy Ultra Magnus, voiced therein by veteran actor Michael Ironside. I looked at one of Magnus’s show-based figures already, but today, I’m looking at one more.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Ultra Magnus was released, not as part of Prime‘s direct tie-in toyline, but instead as part of the Transformers: Platinum Edition line, as well as part of Hasbro’s “Thrilling 30” initiative celebrating the franchise’s 30th anniversary, where he was numbered 3 of 30. He was released in 2013, through both Big Bad Toy Store and Toys R Us. In his robot mode, Magnus stands 9 inches tall and he has 21 points of articulation. As a post-show-appearance Prime Magnus figure, he’s actually based on the character’s show design, rather than the earlier toyline-exclusive design. Much like the Voyager Class version of the character I looked at last year, this guy is built largely from Optimus parts, specifically the Weaponizer Class Optimus from the Prime line’s first year. He’s got a new head, shoulders, and chest plate, which bring him in line with the changes to the Optimus model made for Magnus in the show. The new parts go well with the old, and he certainly looks the part. He keeps Optimus’ internal weaponry gimmick. Pressing the button on his left side, launches two spinning guns over his shoulders. They’re pretty cool, though one of them spins just a bit longer than the other, which is somewhat amusing. Magnus includes the Forge of Solus Hammer, which is quite a sizable piece of plastic on its own. I definitely dig it. He’s also got a small white gun piece, which is alright, but not quite as Magnus-y. His color scheme departs from the Beast Hunters version, which was itself not super cartoon-accurate. This one changes the blue to a better match, and changes the hands to a proper red, but swaps white for the sections that should be grey. It’s not a terrible set-up, though.
Ultra Magnus’s alt-mode, much like the smaller figure, is a truck mode, very much similar to the one that Optimus had. It’s notably a little differently handled from how the smaller version did things. Rather than the extra plastic added by the new shoulders being shifted to the top and back of the truck cab, it’s now be changed into some additional armoring around the sides. It’s honestly not as convincing from the front, but it’s really just as much of a trade off as the other one in the grand scheme of things. The weapons gimmick is still usable in his vehicle mode, now launching from beneath the front grill of the truck.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
This particular copy of this particular Ultra Magnus is nifty, because he’s actually been owned by three separate All Time Toys employees over the years. He was first owned by Pat, who traded him in 2019 when downsizing his Transformers collection. I was planning on snagging it then, but Max wound up snagging it first (this was before we’d really established the precedent of me getting first dibs on Magnuses, so we were still operating on him getting first dibs on Transformers), and then Max ultimately brought him back in last year, at which point I got him, and boom, here we are. It’s funny, because I actually got this figure before a bunch of the other Magnuses I’ve picked up, but he got set to the side for a while, and now he almost feels kind of quaint, I suppose. He’s certainly fun, and also one of the largest Magnus figures I own, which I suppose is pretty neat.