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Sunday, 15 September 2013

Prime - Dark Steel

"Dark Steel is ready to annihilate the Autobots in glorious combat."
Name: Dark Steel
Faction: Predacon
Continuity: Aligned
Toy Line: Prime: Beast Hunters: Predacons Rising

Strength: 10
Speed: 7
Rank: 6
Firepower: 8
Intelligence: 5
Endurance: 9
Courage: 6
Skill: 5
Robot Mode
Dark Steel's robot mode is a large, well built blue and grey, winged form with a dragon head down the middle of his upper torso.
His torso is made of the bulk of his beats mode's main bulk too, with the neck folded inwards into his torso, with only the head really visible. This part of his body features some panels to give his bidy more of a shape. His head is connected to his torso by a ball joint connector that alows it to move as needed.
His head is sculpted to feature his orange face, blue and dark grey helmet with light grey decorations. His face itself is sculpted with blue eyes (unlike the yellow from the movie) and other facial details like a mouth, nose etc. When moving his head though, be careful of the dragon head, as it tends to come loose as it's not properly connected to anything really.
His wings are connected to his back by a simple connecting part and can be flapped a bit, but nothing else, so they're mostly just decoration. The wings also feature the peg hole for his accessory to live in if wanted too.

His arms are connected to the torso with a pivoting hinge which is mostly hidden by his shoulder pads. His arms feature a pivoting joint in the middle of his upper arms, his elbows are made of a hinge joint, he has a pivoting joint under the armour on his lower arm. All these articulation points allow him to move his arms in almost any direction and in any yeah, give him some weapons and have him go all out!
His hands are sculpted with clawsand feature a hinge joint on the wrist to allow them to fold in and out, he also has a hinge on his thumb that creates a peg hole when closed for his accessory to be held in.

His legs are connected to his lower torso by a pivoting hinge again. The upper legs also feature a pivoting joint and a hinge based knee as well, these give him some decent amount of articulation in his leg (well as much as anyone should anyway. His knee joint is hidden by a knee pad, making it look more attractive.
His feat are sculpted with claws, connected to the lower leg by a simple ball joint, The backs of his legs feature a solded down heel that give him a great amount of support.
Alternate Mode
Dark Steel turns into what is called an Ursagryph, which I guess means he's a Bear-Dragon combo of some sort. He's mostly blue all over, with some silver/grey highlights and inner wings. His body also features several orange Cyberglyphics, which just makes him look more interesting.
This form in itself is pretty much just the robot mode in a prone position, with the robot head retracted and the dragon head exposed, so it has much of the same articulation as his robot mode, just with less of a chance of him falling over due to him being on 4 legs rather than 2.
The only real issue in this mode is that his wings cant fold back (to clarify, you can make them flap, but that's all, it doesn't fold back like on some of the other Predacons).
His dragon mode's beak is able to open and close, so you can give him the illusion of talking in this mode if you want (even though Predacons don't talk in beast mode).
There are 2 points in this mode that can be used to store the accessory, between his wings, and near his small tail. The one near the tail doesn't seem to work that well, and keeps popping out for me, so it's best to just have an awkward placement between the wings instead (though honestly, you'd be better off just leaving it off him in this mode).
Dark Steel's accessory is designed to look like a smaller dragon monster, and thus could be a separate Predacon as well, like it is in his mold-mate Grimwing's, however since this one doesn't have a name, it's just a lifeless drone or something instead. This thing is able to shoot out his grappling missile on a piece of string (by unravelling the string and pushing the grey button on it's back) so he can knock over some annoying Autobots or Decepticons. This accessory has a peg that allows it to be slotted in one of the holes on Dark Steel's body, or in his closed hands.
My Final Thoughts
Honestly, Dark Steel is great, he looks good in both modes, has a great amount of articulation, and besides the issue with his beast head in his robot mode chest not being secured, it holds together well.
Now for a little weird thing I noticed...Dark Steel looks a lot like a beast mode version of Dreadwing, from his base colours, even down to his cockpit-like chest decoration and wings!

I would highly recommend this figure to anyone who asks, and I think you'll love him more after watching his actions during the movie itself. Enjoy!

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