Apr 16
Cacophanus

Available From HobbyLink Japan – HLJ.com

By Cacophanus from Mecha Damashii

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Armored Trooper VOTOMS is one of the harshest and most realistic real-robot mecha anime out there. It’s had loads of toys and kits over the years of its wonderful Scopedog design but Takara Tomy has decided to do something a little different. As part of the Gagan Gun line, they have repackaged their previous toys and created a Scopedog version to play with and the result is thoroughly marvellous.

The reason why the Scopedog is a design that works for these toys is that in the anime they have rollers in the feet. This results in mecha combat that can only be described as power roller skating with guns.

This is not the first time Takara Tomy has repackaged these toys either, as they did something similar last year with the famous Kuratas. However, the results here are far more satisfying and that’s because of the heritage behind VOTOMS.

VOTOMS was an early Ryosuke Takahashi anime and focused on the brutality of war. It also treated the mecha, called armored troopers or ATs, as factory built standardised vehicles. Designed by Kunio Okawara, the designs of the Scopedog were pragmatic and entirely utilitarian. The mecha’s form really did follow its function.

All of this was important in grounding the show and the result was that VOTOMS became an immense success.

Back in the day Takara picked up the license for the series and released loads of amazing toys. In recent years they’ve even rolled them into their Microman range and created the Dual Model Zwei, or DMZ, line. These are arguably the nicest toys of the VOTOMS mecha available but unlike the anime, they can’t move around under their own power.

Now Yamato tried to do something years ago with having a few remote-controlled Scopedogs but they were very slow and looked very wooden when they moved. They were also really quite expensive as well. Thankfully, Takara Tomy has shrewdly stepped in and the VOTOMS to their Gagan Gun line.

The result is two variants, a Standard Color and a Melquia Color Scopedog, both of which zip and zoom around at high speed and can shoot at each other using infrared beams.

As genuine toys go then, these are great fun to play with as they capture the VOTOMS lineage almost perfectly.

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The review will be up shortly and I will cover more about how they control as well as the rules of the inbuilt game in each toy.
 

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