G.I. Joe Convention 2017 Blaster
|Maverick||B.A.T. Squad Leader||Cobra B.A.T.||Backstop||Dee Jay|
|COBRA Corrosion||Laser Viper||Sky Serpent w/ Laser Viper Officer||Marauder Snowmobiles||BAT Rocket Packs|
|Conquest X36||Con Set Recap|
An interesting thing has happened with the release of the BattleForce: 2000 convention set… I’ve been somewhat forced to go back and look at the original figures and I’ve been somewhat surprised about the realization that BattleForce: 2000 as a concept, something that never worked for me with the vintage aesthetic, is a lot more appealing in their modern forms.
Blaster is a perfect example of this. While I appreciated what they were going for back in 1987 with the cool futuristic battle helmet, the thick torso armor and padded legs, the figure looked a little off, as did most of the Battleforce: 2000 figures back in the day. Rather than look bulky and imposing like the majority of the 90’s figures did, they looked mostly chubby and clunky.
That problem has been mostly resolved with these modern figures, especially in Blaster’s case. While the majority of the new head sculpts for the convention figures look soft and lack crisp features, Blaster seems to be the best of the bunch. His helmet looks great and has some cool sculpted detail throughout, and the face actually looks like a real person, not a facsimile of one. The choice of relatively modern parts gives him a streamlined, yet reinforced look and feel, but he has some really great articulation in spite of that. Unlike the vintage figure, he manages to look futuristic and well equipped without being overstuffed and mal-proportioned.
Interestingly, my favorite part of this figure are his legs. They use a combination of two different legs for the uppers and lowers, yet they fit together seamlessly and look great, but also look nicely different and don’t immediately resemble already existing parts. A nice combination.
Like the vintage figure, Blaster is a nice green shade throughout with some pretty interesting camouflage placement on the chest and legs, with hints of blue trim. He matches the vintage figure fairly well, but makes improvements in some key areas, which is appreciated. The removable holster is definitely a cool element as well.
It would have been nice if the figure had come with a removable mask as the vintage version did, those seem to be some key pieces of all of these BattleForce: 2000 figures that were neglected in pretty much every case, which is a shame. Investing in tooling for a new head, you’d think masks and mouthpieces could be accommodated for as well. Personally I’d rather have had the masks or microphones over the reproduced vintage guns (since most of them are somewhat ludicrous) but the Club elected to go the other way.
Blaster isn’t loaded with gear. He comes with his stand, a reproduction of his vintage weapon and a machine gun that I believe was originally released with the Retaliation G.I. Joe Trooper. A small selection of weapons, but one that makes sense, and while the Club is releasing the vintage weapons with these figures, I’m glad they’ve also elected to include other weaponry as well that feels a bit more functional and less ornamental.
Blaster is probably one of my favorite figures in the boxed set. He’s got good colors, great articulation and a decent parts selection all combining together into a fun figure that is a decent update (and actually even an upgrade) to the original.
BattleForce: 2000 Blaster
Although I had to deduct some points from a missing mask and non-removable helmet (seriously, these are modern era figures, I don’t get why we can’t get removable helmets anymore) Blaster hits all the right points otherwise. Great colors, a much improved, streamlined look compared to the original, and overall just a really fun figure, which honestly, I did not expect. Good stuff.