Tilly's Zoids

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Zunder / Brox

Robostrux are pretty obscure, coming after the US's brief adventures with Zoids that mirrored the OJR and not having the same fame as it or the OER. I admit I have trouble keeping some of their names straight.

In the UK comic, Zatton goes by Zunder, with his buddy Zaton (spelled with one T) being the OJR Geruder, not the OJR Zatton. Confused yet? Good, so am I. Zunder and Zaton were friends, something extremely unusual in the comic's universe of allies-and-enemies red versus blue Zoids thing. They spent most of their time in philosophical exposition, joining up with Krark in his army but never really feeling it. When Silverman killed Zaton, Zunder was left alone with nobody to talk to. Sad D:.

I'm reviewing both together, because both of them I got built—Zunder from a trivia contest, and Brox from a lucky eBay buy. They're the same mold, the only difference is the colors. Zunder's are classic Zenebas-slash-Red Zoids: silvery grey and wine red, red cockpit glass, and silver pilot.

Brox is a bit more unusual. The Robostrux line is known for odd colors, one set of which is oft-maligned as clashy. I love it, now that I've seen it, because it's like nothing else out there. Brox is dark olive/foresty green, a sort of pale, greyish brown (think Minty Kitty, faded), and a deep coral sort of red that manages to not look pink. The cockpit glass is green (with an olive tint like Storch and Dimetrodon, not the brilliant green of new releases) and caps a tan sort of yellow. Larger models had extra chrome weapons, but Brox is a windup, so no shiny here other than the pilot.

Oddly enough, this scheme is almost a visual dead ringer for a washed-out version of my living room rug. You could almost call it camouflage, other than it'd be a poor place for Brox to hide because of the way people find everything they lose on that rug: CRUNCH.

Since my Brox came prebuilt in a very lucky find of a lot, I got to take it apart and rebuild it just like I had to build my first Zunder: sans instructions. Sans pictures, even. Zunder I had to finally relent and get a photo to figure out the pop-out gun. This time around I managed without, and it was great fun.

I've seen Zatton/Zunder/Brox's construction compared to Helcat in concept, and it is a little similar, with the underparts covered by side pieces bringing a body together. Zatton's even cleverer, I think, though that just might be the "no instructions" thing. Just figuring out which way the motor and tail went on took a bit of fiddling, and from there it was a case of if the gun has to go here, then this has to go here...and whoops, that side bit's getting away. While you're holding the bar that moves the legs in place and lining up two pegs to put the side piece on, you also have to manage getting its neck in place and not letting the pop-out gun escape off its mount. It's not really frustrating so much as interesting, and it left me pleased at how clever it is.

From there it's just sticking on caps, legs, back guns and head, but that's okay. Once they're on, Zatton/Zunder/Brox stands there, regarding you with an expression that could strike as curious, contemplative (as suiting Zunder), or just plain cute. Give it a wider release, and I bet it'd become a favorite among fans of cute Zoids like Pteras.

My Brox's motor is a bit worn (though it's better off than my Zunder, which can barely manage a stagger), but it still skip-shuffles along for a bit before sticking. It suits its bouncy (for a philosophical sauropod) look, I think, and I bet with a newer motor it'd scoot along quite nicely like Helcat and Iguan do.

On the customizing front, Zunder doesn't have any standard pegs visible normally, but remove the back guns and there's a pair. The adapters from the Flexible Booster Unit are effective in getting things on said pegs, as they're otherwise recessed enough it's a challenge. My Zunder has CP-09 on it thanks to those, because it was missing its back guns to start (while Redler's got the Flexible Booster via CP-09's adapters for its wings).

If you like small windups, you'll almost certainly dig this guy. Like sauropods or cute Zoids? Same thing. Either hunt down an old built one on eBay or get the Zenebas Memorial Box, which includes the first five windups—Zatton or Zunder shouldn't be too hard to find as far as old designs go. Brox is another story (I hardly ever see them on eBay), but unless you really really want its colors, getting anything of that mold should do just fine.

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One Comment

  1. Sineater
    Posted July 6, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    Robostrux aren't that obscure, at least here in the States. I bumped into a (whatever they renamed Godos/Trooperzoid to) in eighty-something, and immediately recognized it for a new-generation Zoid. I was thrilled, and took it home to meet the Whiteheads. :-D it was shortly followed by cousins Stang/Guysack, and Chompz/Barigator... and... and that may be the only ones I got. Expensive little bastards. Until NAR, Zoids were always overpriced in the U.S.

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