A colourful robot that changes into a robot mobile or a missile carrier.

DynamanThe ST version of Dynaman was one of the first smaller figures released in the Godaikin range as Bandai America sought to reduce the retail price of the line and give it a wider appeal.

The original figure was one of the last Popy Chogokin designs, released in 1983 with Bandai's reabsorbing of Popy imminent. The DynaRobo could separate into the three vehicles as seen in the tokusatsu series Kagaku Sentai Dynaman - the jet Dynamach, the armoured car Dynamobile and the flatbed truck Dynagarry. The DX version (reviewed here) could do this but the ST version was compromised by its' small size, and thus had rather a limited interpretation of the combination.

Both versions were issued in the second series of Godaikin in 1985. Also produced in Japan but not issued in the West was the GB-98 Realtype Series DynaRobo. This could not separate at all, but was designed to have greater articulation and show-accurate paint applications.

A fully kitted out ST Dynaman should come with two Rocket Punch fists (well, they're more like forearms), the Dynamach/head, a sword, a shield, the Dynamach undercarriage and some small yellow missiles, which I assume go in the neck launching point in vehicle mode. Mine only has the head and fists, which is enough for me to be happy with the toy.


DYNAMAN

Dynaman's robot form stands 6" tall, about the norm for ST Popy designs. It's notably slimmer than the DX version, looking much more like the TV model. While it hasn't really come through on my pictures, it's a more metallic shade of blue, looking a little more realistic. As well as losing the boxy feel, it's perversely more detailed than the larger version - the stickers and paint apps recalling the tokusatsu more than the moulded plastic of the the DX. There's also gold paint on the hips and outside of the arms, rather than the yellow, while silver replaces white on the shoulders and elbows.

The ST version is also a little more articulated. While there's the same movement at the shoulders, the head can actually turn due to the round connection for the head (as opposed to the rectangular one on the DX) while the legs move at the hip. While these can move to 90° they don't give a great range in practice, as the joints are too far down for them to be bent far without looking weird. There's not a lot of diecast on Dynaman - only the front of the chest and the upper feet - but he's still very well made. There's not much on the figure that would break easily, though it having a firing head means decapitated Dynamans tend to outnumber capitated Dynamans. Aside from the Rocket Punch feature (firing his head isn't really a practical robot attack, more being something for the vehicle mode, as well as endemic of Popy's philosophy of "Why use connections when you can make something spring-loaded?") and the accessories there's not a massive amount to do with Dynaman. He's just not as solid and imposing as the DX version, though he does make a nice enough display piece alongside other ST figures.

Godaikin Dynaman DX
Godaikin Dynaman DX
Godaikin Dynaman DX

DYNAGARRY

Dynaman's alternate forms are pretty pathetic. I'm not up on Super Sentai so I couldn't tell you whether they're accurate to the show or not, but they're still useless. I've managed to get past the Transformers/Gobots mindset of "it's got to turn into something else" and can generally accept when something's a practical alternative for the robot - for example, Daitetsujin 17's Flying Fortress configuration might not look much like a jet, but it's a believable way of him travelling around.

This however is the top half of Dynaman on a flatbed truck (i.e. Dynagarry). There's really not a lot more that can be said; I can't think of any particular need for this interim mode. The Godaikin box gamely notes that it's a mobile robot, but then surely so is the one with legs? Gah.

Godaikin Dynaman ST

DYNAMOBILE

After that, the Dynamobile configuration (which needless to say looks nothing like the DX Dynamobile unit) is actually an improvement as at least someone's put a little effort into hiding the robot. Sadly it's very little effort, and no attempt is made to hide the arms, which just lie either side of the block on the flatbed's back.

It does, however, look a little bit more useful, and the Dynamach can be launched from this mode via a spring-loaded launcher. When this thing is separated (it should have a little trolley so it can both stand up and to fit in with the look on the show but these are often missing) the launcher can be used to fire missiles.

Godaikin Dynaman ST

SUMMARY

Both of the alternate configurations are weak even by ST Godaikin standards, but the robot mode is worthy enough in its' own right. Despite a more metallic finish and slightly improved poseability however it's not as good-looking as the DX version, and comes nowhere near on the features side of things. However, the ST Dynaman can generally be found cheaply, and as such can make a nice addition to a collection of figures around the same size.