PHOTOBER THE 6TH – Zombie War Breakdown

In actuality, only two toys in this set featured any first-use parts, and this was not one of them. Zombie War Breakdown is the character from Transformers: Prime after being killed off. I’m not sure off the top of my head how this is meant to reconcile with Breakdown’s original body being salvaged and eventually having a dying human grafted to it, but let’s just assume it does for the sake of argument.

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Breakdown here is a redeco of Combiner Wars Offroad, but despite that I’ve always found the visual identity pretty distinct from the original iteration of the mold. The head effectively uses a new paint layout to make the shape of the face look very different. It might not look especially specifically like Breakdown, but it also doesn’t look all that much like Offroad anymore, which is probably more important in this application. Another interesting deco trick can be seen here too; the combiner plug was cast in two different colors, something that ordinarily had not been available asa manufacturing option. I even recall that a request for the very same thing in the production of a Botcon toy had been denied. On Breakdown, the effect is to make the chest all be a solid color, and letting the grey part of the plug help tie together with the silver of the lower abdomen and waist. It’s a nice bit of visual complexity that couldn’t be accomplished any other way, since the combiner parts can’t take factory paint.

Like Thrust yesterday, I think the deco suits the mold it’s applied to very nicely. Tye dark blue brings out the molded detail very well. The applied silver paint separates areas nicely, giving the relatively simple toy a look of being more physically complex than it is. In terms of physicality, the mold doesn’t exactly evoke the hulking Breakdown from the show. Like, at all. While there might have been alternate mold choices that could have reflected that better, I’d guess the goal was to go with something close-ish to having the same kind of vehicle form. I might have let that slide if I was making the decisions. But then Offroad was never the best Combiner Wars figure, for my money. I mean, from an engineering perspective, it’s just an Aerialbot but as a truck, and virtually all the molds designed after the Aerialbots were a distinct step up. But I digress…

And even if this mold isn’t a star of the Combiner Wars lineup, it can still do some fun things, like two-handing its axe over its head!

This week continues with more of Grand Galvatron tomorrow! Come back to see who’s next on Photober the 7th!