Transformers Dreadwing
Transformers Dreadwing
Transformers Dreadwing
Transformers Dreadwing

Another Activision drone type, Dreadwing was featured as the only flying cannon fodder character in the 2007 game. It appeared on both sides (notably Autobot versions harass Starscream during an attack on an isolated military base, while Decepticon versions help Blackout and Starscream combat Jazz in Mission City). Dreadwing drones are a bit rubbish truth be told due to their implausible attack pattern.

The Deluxe figure based on Ken Christiansen's design has been produced in three varieties thus far, all Decepticons - one bearing the Dreadwing name which looks a bit like the in-game drone; one bearing the name Overcast which looks nothing like the in-game drone; and one named Fearswoop who looks like Generation 2 Hooligan.


Dreadwing turns into a MiG-29 fighter, which is great - I like the aircraft, and it seemed to have fallen between the cracks as far as transforming versions go. Thanks to being a Movie figure, this actually looks quite like a jet you might actually see in real life rather than in some kid's colouring book - there's a fetching ocean blue/ocean grey/light grey camouflage scheme that looks marvellous.

Hasbro never quite forget that it's a Transformers figure though, so there are dabs of purple and cartoony flames coming out of the jet exhausts. Elsewhere the junk on the underside is at least condensed into a single canister that just about manages to pass as a sensor pod of some description, which isn't a bad solution. On the other hand there's some nice detail like the clear canopy and some committed panel lining, resulting in Dreadwing having a lovely alt mode.


Which makes what happens next a real shame. Firstly, Dreadwing has a horrible transformation. Generally however complex Movie figures are they're not often particularly frustrating. But Dreadwing is like an intentionally bad joke - some parts need to be moved in just the right order or you have to backtrack while the forearms have an annoying habit of just dropping off during the sequence. It is, in short, not fun. Of course a good robot mode would salvage something, making a good display piece. Sadly, he looks awful.

The proportions are terrible - thin weedy legs with a flat, wide body implausibly balanced on top. Big long arms hanging down to his shins with obvious elbow joints to boot. No real hands, either - the jet outlets are in their place. With the little flame missiles in place this is a neat nod to the drone's attacks in the game. For any other purpose it looks terrible. The lens head itself isn't actually too bad but like the elbows it has a very exposed, gawky purple joint on the bottom. Articulation is minimal as it's all you can do to stand Dreadwing up without his forearms dropping off, while the shoulders and elbows can't support the weight of the things even if you can coax them into staying put. Bloody diabolical.


So there's a good alt mode and a robot mode that's so awful you can only think they did it on purpose. Even putting aesthetics to one side he's no fun either, barely hanging together and unable to hold basic poses. Dreadwing is cheap on the second hand market due to no-one wanting him but not cheap enough. A waste of plastic.