Transformers MP-52 Masterpiece Starscream 2.0
Starscream’s Null Ray guns need to be transformed into their “missile” mode before being attached to the jet mode.
The “missiles” are then attached to two hardpoints on the jet mode, one under the wing and another in a peg hole in the connector arm.
Deployable landing gear
Openable canopy and front nose cone, to reveal the front radar dish.
Some very minor sculpting detail on the c0ckpit controls.
Adjustable nozzles for the thrusters and openable air brakes.
Adjustable wing flaps
While “Megatron in gun mode” can be attached to the jet mode’s underbelly, this sort of gets in the way of the attachment piece to the flight. What the…?
Thanks to the new design, Starscream, can now do “Gerwalk” modes (half jet, half robot mode, the term comes from the “Super Dimensional Space Fortress Macross” Anime). This mode appeared in the episode “Dinobot Island part 2”.
Unfortunately, the soft ratchets in the legs can’t support the Gerwalk mode unless the unit is pointing upward. If it’s pointing downward the whole thing falls over.
The Decepticon’s Air Commander, Starscream is also the Decepticon army’s second-in-command. Treacherous and full of ambition, Starscream incessantly schemes to do whatever it takes to usurp leadership from Megatron and become the new leader of the Deceptions.
I just love that Takara is still continuing this tradition of showcasing the actual height of the toy on the back of the box. I really hope they never change this.
Diecast parts include:
-Chest panels (the red area)
Numerous reports noted that several units of MP-52 Starscream arrived with hairline cracks in this area of the tail wing. I am so happy mine didn’t have this QC defect. But seriously, Takara really needs to up their game more. Third Party companies are already putting them to shame as it is.
The ankles on this toy are a bit loose, so the figure tends to fall over easily, at least on my copy anyway. Sigh..
The shoulder pylons are terrible. This happens a LOT when you’re handling the toy in any mode.
They’re also an eyesore. I wish they designed this thing better.
Still, in light of the negatives, I really got to admit, Takara designers really did this thing way better than the previous releases. It looks like Starscream just walked out of the TV screen!
Various different facial expressions (he comes with 5 alternate face plates).
Starscream’s fingers are individually articulated.
Surprisingly, thanks to the new transformation design, we also get an ab crunch joint as a bonus!
For accessories, Starscream comes with this drill attachment from the episode “The Core”.
He also comes with this attachment called the “magic hand”, along with a meteorite fragment from the episode “Cosmic Rust”.
Null-Ray effects parts
Starscream’s Null Ray guns can be removed from their post and equipped onto his hands.
Last but not least, he comes with Megatron in Gun mode.
The effects parts for Starscream’s Null Ray guns can also be pegged onto Megatron.
The base is a redeco of the one that came with MP Beast Wars Dinobot. Featuring the same locking mechanism for the arm.
An attachment piece is required before hooking up the jet mode.
Thanks to the adjustable armature, the jet mode can be posed in various angles.
Takara also included effects parts for the jet mode’s thrusters. Cool!
While the base can also accommodate the robot mode, I find the level to be way too low to be of any practical use. Sigh…
Side note: to attach the effects parts for the thrusters in robot mode, remember to pull the nozzles down first so that the peg will have space inside the nozzle to plug into.
Overall, a huge improvement over the previous MP Seeker mold. Plus lots more diecast!!!! I was really surprised but the generous amounts of diecast they added in here. However, QC problems still plague the MP line and I really hope that Has-Tak really fixes this. The MP collectors deserve better from the official company.
Unfortunately, as good as this bot is, it didn’t win folks over for long, thanks to Deformation Space releasing their version of “toon-accurate” Starscream (Crimson Wings) almost at the same time as the official MP. Thanks to the cheaper price, bigger size and cleaner backside in robot mode of that one, it somewhat turned folks off on this smaller, more expensive version.
Me, personally though, I think I’ll stick to the official Takara Seekers. It ticked all the right boxes for me (the size seems right based on the animation scales, for me anyway) and I love what I have here (negatives aside).
As for the older models of the Seekers, I guess I’ll just leave them on display in jet mode as alternative “background” Seekers, since that seemed to be a thing in the early episodes (two Starscreams in one shot?)
Post script: Since transforming this thing is difficult at times (particularly when it comes to rotating the nose cone, it’s incredibly hard to do and might cause breakage if repeatedly done), I just opted to leave the toy in robot mode when stored in the box. Thankfully the tray has a lot of empty space on the underside, so you can place the figure in robot mode there, leaving the default cavity for the jet mode empty instead.
Man, I wish Takara packed these things in robot mode instead.