Hasbro's Xevoz: Wave 4 Franken Punker, Infil Traitor and Hyper Guardian
by Mr. Stinkhead
Sweet Salvation (or is that salivation?) I finally have in my articulated hands, the final three Xevoz. As you're most likely aware, in the last 16 months we've been introduced to Xevoz, fallen in love with Xevoz, mourned the loss of Xevoz, and given a glimmer of hope. From the illustrious Wave 4 of the Xevoz line, Thunder Shaman (the gorilla), and Rune Slayer vs. Firedrake (two pack) were limitedly available through online retailers. The boosters, Franken Punker, Infil Traitor, and Hyper Guardian were only spotted over seas. Primarily Singapore, and only made it to US shores through clandestine deals and overpriced eBay auctions.
Then just a few weeks ago, there was a small glimmer of hope. Hasbro opened their HasbroToyShop.com direct store, and listed these final remaining Xevoz... however they had no "add to cart" button, and simply bore the ominous words coming soon. Every day, practically every hour, Xevoz fans watched the clock for these sought-after gems to become available. Like waiting for the bikini top that just won't fill out... you think they're never coming, and then when you least expect it, they appear overnight. June 22nd, sometime mid-morning the buttons appeared. We were all instantly washed over with feelings of relief and urgency. At this time we don't know how many units Hasbro had available for purchase that morning, but we do know that less than 10 hours later, they were all gone.
So now you know the conditions under which these arrived, let me tell you why
it was worth the wait. I'm not going to waste your time
discussing their detail, paint applications, or interchangeability.
This set follows in the footsteps of high quality, and great
play value as previous Xevoz
This monster, styled loosely on Frankenstein's Monster,
comes with some great accessories and sweet customizing
options. My favorite goodies are the sturdy rubber tubes
you can plug in all over the place. Connect the arms to
the back back, or the chest to the forearms, or the thighs
to the biceps... go crazy, they're easy to connect and move
around. I also love the head with the moveable jaw, and
the executioners mask. How sweet is that? Now I have
two action figures with executioner's masks. He also comes
with a "squished" I-beam. (it's pinched
in the middle to show how strong he is), an axe
(choppy thing), an axe (guitar), and a
wrench. Now yes, he's got gears all over
him, so he'll need a monkey wrench to "fix" himself every
now and then... however, I think it was included so you
A-Ha's Take on Me video.
He also comes with a boulder on a chain (which is similar to Moon Stalker's chain), an open hand, and an extra "coil" piece.
When I first saw pics of the Frank, it wasn't sticking to my radar as a favorite.
I had to get it because it was a Xevo, but I didn't
think I'd love it. Well again, the Xevoz line surprises,
and this figure, although far from my favorite, is a decent
figure, better than I imagined. I love the wires you can
plug in all over the place, and I love the "on/off" switch
on his back. The executioner's mask is another nice touch.
Infil Traitor Like Franken Punker, when I originally saw this one on Hasbro's site, I didn't think I'd like it nearly as much as I do now that it's in my hands. I love robots. I really love robots, but I couldn't wrap my head around the disc head and "winged cape" type thing that this robot sports. But again, it's a Xevo, and I knew I should try it out.
First off the body is simple, elegant, and everything it needs to be. A little more skeletal than robotic in sculpt, it's very clean yet deviates from the look and feel of the previous Xevoz robots. The disc head didn't bother me nearly as much as I thought it would. When I take photos of toys, I need the figure to look at the camera (or away from the camera) in a way that can convey emotion. Even with their streamlined features, I can seem to capture an "expression" from most Xevo heads. I thought this would be impossible with two chevron shapes on a disc. But surprisingly, I could see the "face" and it doesn't bother me at all.
Secondly, once you get his soft rubber cape on, it opens and closes (around
him) pretty nicely. It also looks decent in both modes.
In "closed" mode, it's more for lurking, as you won't be
able to move the arms or legs as much, but it does look
cool. In open mode, it adds a nice dimension that beefs
up his wiry frame a bit. I do want to mention it also looks
just as cool without his cape on, but he does look a little
Then there's the chest compartment. Like Iron Spectre, the "rib
cage" can swing open to reveal a skull-face within his chest
cavity. (You can also pop this head on top of the neck to
replace the disc if you don't like it.) But, instead I opted
to plug in what I have found to be the Second Greatest
Xevoz Accessory Evar! (click the pic to see). That's
right, it's a miniature Sledge Trooper
sitting in a chair. Making Infil Traitor like this massive-Gundam-style-robot
that another robot can drive. Sweet! This accessory
can be plugged onto many other Xevoz figures, making them
massive-Gundam-style-robots to be driven around. (For
the uneducated, the Greatest Xevoz Accessory Evar!
is the brain in a jar accessory from Transscorcher.)
IT has some decent weapons... not my favorite out of the bunch, but nice. He has two long swords, and two "dagger" sized sword things... the problem with the two shorter blades is that they're actually smaller than his finger-claws... so to me, that's not very useful. But they can be hooked together by the handles (as can the long swords) to make a nice double ended weapon he can carry, or plug in on his back. If anything I wish he came with more random robot pieces. Sledge Trooper came with a claw, a hand, a chain saw, a laser gun... I like stuff like that for plugging into my robots.
I also have to mention the design of the fingers and thumb is very well done.
The fingers can close, but the thumb can mimic a lot (but
not all) of the human thumb's range. I thought this was
a nice design/engineering innovation that works great with
That leaves us with Hyper Guardian
I've been looking forward to the archetypal super hero
figure for quite some time. Action figures, the art form,
were created for super heroes, and I was dying to see the
Xevoz interpretation of the classic form. The overall look
and feel is perfect. Bright yellow and blues let you know
Hyper Guardian is on the scene, fighting for truth,
justice, and the American way. He's beefed up quite a bit
too. He's taller and more substantial than the skeleton,
or army soldier. I also think the two heads he comes with
are perfect. They're stoic, and chiseled, and perfectly
match the Xevoz flair.
The nicest accessory I've received with a figure is this guy's base. It looks
great, and it helps pose him in flying mode when you plug
it into the heel of his foot. (The reason why this isn't
the "Greatest Accessory Evar" is because this works great
for this particular figure, but doesn't automatically adapt
to the others quite as nicely.) It took a couple of tries
to get it to balance in the position I wanted him in, but
it did work nicely, and instead of simply being clear in
order to be ignored, it's bright translucent yellow and
it looks like a star burst, or stylized explosion that he's
flying away from. Nice.
His accessories are intriguing. He has two yellow fists
that plug into his gripping hands for an assumed "mega punch."
He also has one stylized clear yellow hand that plugs into
his palm for a "force push." He also has a dumbbell for
showing off his muscles. I'll also include his cape as an
accessory. Typically I prefer cloth to sculpted plastic,
but this soft plastic cape is molded in a pose that looks
natural when the figure is in most positions. He also has
two pairs of hands. One set is closed fist/gripping hand.
The other is open palm, much like Runeslayer
that has a hole in the center of the palm for placing "attacks"
that will appear to be flying out of his hand. I think these
are terrific. So much so, I am beginning to wish a lot more
of my figures had interchangeable hands.
Overall Whew... I am certainly glad I got this set. Not only because I now own the complete set of Xevoz*, but these figures were definately worth the wait. Infact, I think they're nice enough to warrant paying slightly inflated prices (like double retail, but no more than that) just because you never know when you'll see them again. Honestly, if you're still looking for these figures, you'll probably have to resort to eBay. However, from what we all understand, a bunch of people bought multiple sets from the Hasbro store, and if there's enough on eBay at one time, the prices can't get outrageously high.
We don't know what the future will hold for the Xevoz. We've heard rumors of out and out death, we're heard that Hasbro could be taking a year off to re-evaluate the line, we've heard that Xevoz are organically grown, and not made in a factory like other toys, but actually "picked" from fields by albino space monkeys.
We still hold a torch for Xevoz here at MPb, and I have been collecting amazing custom jobs since the last wave hit stores. So check back soon to see what some of your fellow collectors have been up to in the meantime. Thanks to all of you that participated in our Save the Xevoz contest. We'll keep you posted as much as we can.
If Hasbro is listening; we, the collector community, have two comments1) SEE? See how quickly they sold out? Let's give you more of our money. We can't wait! and 2) If it helps with production costs, which could in turn lower price, or permit more sets to be made, why not remove the gaming elements and trim down the packaging? If you want to just sell to collectors through HasbroToyShop.com (or online retailers) we don't need fancy packaging to get us to buy these. Plain "mailers" will do.
To see our coverage of all of the other Xevoz, stop by our Xevoz Coverage. For more information about Xevoz, check out Xevoz.com, and to discuss Xevoz with other fans, be sure to visit the Xevolution message board.