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Heavy Gunner Endoskeleton

RoboCop vs. The Terminator
by yo go re

Time for another videogame repaint!

In the near future, the worlds of RoboCop and The Terminator merge into a single reality. You, as RoboCop, must save mankind by destroying the Skynet super computer in the possible future in which machines rule the Earth and Skynet is supreme.

Actually, this isn't just a videogame figure - RoboCop versus The Terminator the videogame was based on RoboCop versus The Terminator the comicbook, which was published by Dark Horse in 1992. It was written by Frank Miller (before he went squirrel-down-the-pants crazy) and drawn by Walt Simonson (the guy who signs his name as a brontosaurus). The comic was actually pretty awesome, and we totally recommend you read it - not a recap or review, read the real thing and be surprised by the quality and the plot. The game was a very loose adaptation (basically taking nothing but the name), but it gave NECA yet another chance to repaint some existing molds.

This figure, obviously, is a repaint of the Endo from NECA's plain Terminator line - you can tell it's not the Cult Classics Series 3 version, because that one had an articulated jaw that this one lacks. It's fine by me either way, since I never bought any NECA Endos (because I already had McFarlane's version, and there are only so many ways to make a skeleton robot).

According to former McFarlane sculptors, Todd's attitude toward accurate details on movie toys boiled down to "it's good enough, no one will notice"; by comparison, NECA's seems to be "let's get it as close to prefect as we possibly can," so we're going to give them the benefit of the doubt and say this is the most film-accurate Endoskeleton toy ever. It's not made from as many individual pieces as McFarlanes (compare the forearms and shins, which NECA has sculpted to merely look like they're made of individual pieces, rather than actually being made of individual pieces). There are lots of non-working pistons scattered about, but some working ones as well: the biceps, triceps, beside the spine, and on the inside of the thighs. There are rubber tubes running from the shoulders and the head into the center of the torso. There's a hinged panel on his abdomen, and his two shoulder blades can fold open, as well. That seems like a strange choice - none of them have anything to do with the articulation - but presumably the real prop is built the same way.

The articulation is comparable to McFarlane's figure. The Endo has a balljointed head, swivel neck, swivel/hinge shoulders, swivel biceps, hinged elbows, swivel wrists, a swivel torso with no hinge (depite there being a perfect spot for it), swivel/hinge hips that still have the "V-crotch" problem Monkey Boy talked about in his review, hinged knees, and swivel ankles. The only real bummer is the lack of a hinge in the torso. Why would they not include that? Even if the prop didn't have one, the "real" Endoskeleton would have, or else Arnie wouldn't have been able to bend over. They even gave him hinged toes, but no hinged chest?

Since this is a videogame figure, it has the stylized paint we've come to expect from figures like Batman, Freddy, Predator and Rocky. There's a two-pack of orange and blue Endos available (and super plentiful), but this one is closest to "normal" colors. Its base color is a very dark blue-grey, with two lighter shades of gray over that, and then highlights that are nearly white. The back is basically unpainted, but that's just because the Endos in the game were only seen from the side-front.

This figure is officially the "Heavy Gunner Endoskeleton," and his accessories reflect that. He comes with the Cyberdyne Showdown minigun, but instead of a bag, the ammo belt disappears into a new technological backpack that plugs into the screw-holes on the toy's back. Since the Endo's hands don't close tightly enough, you have to get creative to have him hold the gun. We suggest tucking his pinky finger under the bar that sticks out of the grip, and having him grab the carry-handle underhand instead of overhand.

Alternately, you could just rely on the included tripod. Since the Heavy Gunner Endoskeletons weren't just wandering around the levels, but instead had fixed gun emplacements, the set would be shortchanging us if it didn't follow suit. So NECA made a new gun stand with an extendable post that squeezes snugly into the bottom of the gun without the need for a peg or hole - though would including one really have been so bad?

The Heavy Gunner Endoskeletons only appear twice in the game, serving as level bosses both times. But even if you don't care about the game, the accessories and paintscheme on this Endo are cool enough to warrant picking him up. He's closer to normal than the two-pack, and he comes with stuff no toy before him has had.

-- 05/16/15


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