Here's my review of the Mega Bloks Power Ranger Samurai Megazord I got last week.
First off, this is my first ever Mega Bloks set. I've always had Lego and had the mindset that anything else is just not as good. Mega Bloks was one of the brands that I avoided since I've always hear bad things about their sets, like missing pieces and poor fitting of the pieces. Therefore I was a little worried when I started to build this set. Let me just clear this up right off the bat, there were no missing pieces at all and the pieces fit together as good as Lego pieces, so there's no worry there.
Since I haven't build a Lego set in ages, I don't remember if they packaged their pieces according to the building steps or not. Most of the "kits" that I've been building in the last ten years were radio control model kits and most of them have pieces packaged in separate bags with letters on them so you can identify which parts came from with bag since some of the kits can contain thousands of parts. This is the first thing I noticed with this set, the pieces seem to be randomly packaged with no labels. The only separation was the bag containing the unique pieces like the zord heads and minifig. I ended up just dumping everything into two separate plastic tray.
The instructions were clearly laid out. There were several mistakes in them, mainly the steps to build the green leg, but they were easy to figure out. (Step C6 uses black 2 unit block, but picture shows green one used, there are no more green ones. And the sticker for the green leg goes on the other face of the leg.)
This is the only shot I got of my building process, finally a use for those plastic Transformers packaging!
Building time took about 40 minutes, most of the time was spent looking for the right pieces. Building is relatively easy, anyone within the age range should have no problem (5+).
Here's the finished product, unfortunately each limb cannot transform to their respective Origami zords. Although at this price ($25), it should be a known fact. But also surprisinly at this price, the stickers that came with this set were high quality stickers, not those paper sticker crap that a lot of toys come with. These were flexible stickers that fit perfectly, almost too perfectly (hence hard to align properly), onto the parts.
The belt buckle could use some marker lining to make the details pop more.
Poseability of this zord is surprisingly quite good. All the joints are ball joints with the exception of the waist swivel. There's a ball joint in the neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, thighs, knees, and ankles. The joints are tight enough to hold most standing poses, but due to the weight of the zord, he can't do any extreme poses without falling.
One thing I forgot to mention is that the sword comes packaged in cardboard to prevent deformation of the plastic sword which is a nice touch since how many times do we see bent plastic swords right out of the box?
Also as you can see here, although the stickers come for both front and back for the arms, the legs only have stickers for the outer faces. It would have been much nicer if they included stickers for the inner leg faces as well.
The shield is attached to the back of his left arm via one of those swivel joints allowing it to spin which is one of the gimmicks of this toy. Looks pretty cool eh? Although I am sure if you really want to, you can fix it in piece with the leftover pieces.
The back of the zord looks pretty good too. One pet peeve of mine are robots that look good in the front, but in the back they look like a flat piece of cardboard.
Here's a closer look at the upper torso. Paint apps are pretty good, there were a bit of slop on the edges on the top pieces where the gold transitions to the black helmet part. But they were easily scraped off with the back of an exacto knife. You can also see the hideous neck joint from this angle, but it is hidden in the normal angle like the one taken in the pictures above.
Here are the unique zord head pieces, paint apps are not bad.
Articulation-wise, this is as far as the elbows can bend due to the inhibiting armor pieces.
And here, you can see the forward/backward limits in the thigh, knee, and ankle joints. Even though there is a ball joint in the knees, the armor pieces prevent it from going as far as the joint allows. But the ankle articulation is surprisingly good for this type of figure. There is also side-to-side movement in the ankles which can be seen in the previous posing pictures.
Size comparison time, this figure is huge! I tried to find several common figures to compare with. If anyone wants something else in comparison, leave a message in the comments below and I'll see what I can do.
With Animated Voyager class Optimus Prime
Movie Deluxe Bumblebee
Universe 2.0 Starscream
S.H.Figuarts Kamen Rider Decade
Bandai Retrofire MMPR Megazord
NECA City Hunter Predator (whom I just bought for myself for Christmas!)
Lastly, here's the minifig that comes with the Megazord. It is the Red Ranger in Mega Mode. I am not sure what difference is the Mega Mode as I do not watch this series. I've only watched several episodes of the Japanese Shinkengers.
The vest and the belt pieces are rubber and are just pieces held between the connecting pieces (so they can be removed).
The helmet can also be removed.
All in all, I am going to say that Mega Bloks has got themselves a winner here. Even with all the new toys I have gotten this year, this one will be in my top 10 for sure. The engineering, the execution, and the quality is just excellent on this set. It was fun to build and also fun to play with. The pieces held together well enough for me to do all these poses and take pictures of them with nothing falling off in the process. This set has truly wiped the negativity I had with Mega Bloks in the beginning. I am not even a fan of the Samurai Power Rangers and yet I am in love with this toy. Although I am a fan of the Mighty Morphin series...sooo Mega Bloks...please give us a MMPR Megazord!!! I highly recommend this set to any Rangers fan or even just fans of robots! It would be awesome if they did Megazords from other lines as well...if they are the same quality as this one, I know I will buy every single one of them for sure.
Now I can't wait to go get the red Origami zord next...