Normally I'm not a fan of repaints, but being a DOTM Sideswipe fan, I just could not resist getting a "Black" - Nemesis Universe like - version of him (Even if DOTM Darksteel technically isn't a Nemesis character and supposedly exists in the same universe as DOTM Siwdeswipe.
DOTM Sideswipe's blister card reads: "Darksteel is a traditionalist. As a student of the most respected Decepticon warrior on Cybertron, he learned there is no substitute for a razor-sharp blade and clever mind. Blasters and cannons get the job done, but may fail in the heat of battle. The blade never falters."
Of course I'm pretty sure that people can argue that the chance of a blaster or a cannon failing in the middle of battle is infinitesimal - at best you can run out of ammunition; And that you have to get really close to use a blade, but to each his own. Personally I'm for a good long barreled sniper rifle supported by a close range shotgun and a machete.
What's to like about DOTM Darksteel?
Let's start off with that Corvette Stingray mode. It's cool. Admittedly the paint-job is not as good. The metallic gold did not blend in as nicely as it should have with the metallic military green like it did with DOTM Air Raid. You can hardly see the golden flame job. Still there aren't that many top-down Transformers in the market. DOTM Darksteel's comes with two mechtech blasters, one of which - at the push of the button becomes a Cybertronian blade - that doesn't lock into place. The other blaster you just flip over to use it's "claw." They fit on either side of DOTM Darksteel or you can combine the two to create a huge ramming can-opener that you can mount on his side or top.
Transform DOTM Darksteel and well... nothing special. Literally a redeco of the DOTM Sideswipe with Starscream's head. Happily I still kinda appreciate this particular DOTM Sideswipe mode.Thanks to his mold and color scheme, it's very.... for the lack of a better word, insectoid! DOTM Darksteel in robot mode can start off with his wings folded down his back as you can see here and his blades folded up. Even DOTM Darksteel's feet spurs which help balance him from keeling forward and the back-cantered legs add to the very insectoid feeling of this particular Decepticon.
Now all you have to do is piss him off and DOTM Darksteel's blades - which are simpler than the twin blades of the ROTF Sideswipe - come down and his wings start buzzing. Again, you can't help but think of an angry, deadly armored insect.
DOTM Darksteel's Mechtech blades/blasters are hand held by him like regular blasters.
And again the two Mechtech blades/blasters can be combined for DOTM Darksteel to wield with both hands like Darth Maul. Unfortunately his articulation tends to be quite limited so there isn't much he can do with it.
What's not to like about DOTM Darksteel?
Well what haven't we mentioned? The poor arm articulation, the bad paint job? And well basically I don't like redecos. I appreciate the effort that went into making him look cool and DOTM Darksteel would be a really, really cool toy if I didn't know he was a redeco. But as it is, he leaves a bit of a bad taste in my mouth and makes me think that I'm buying something that no one else wanted to buy so they repainted it and resold it.
The thing is though, he looks really good as a nemesis/arch-enemy to ROTF Sideswipe!
Note the difference in transformation between the two. DOTM Darksteel's blades/arms are up front and that forms his chest. ROTF Sideswipe's arms and chest come from his rear.
This particular DOTM Darksteel was purchased at Toys R Us at the retail price of PhP 699.75 ( Approx US$ 16. 28). It's NOT yet available on Amazon and I'm not sure if he's reached US shores.
For the full review and gallery, please click HERE