Since the very beginning, we’ve had unofficial releases of transformable robots. Some were similar in theme while others were actual knock-offs of the official toys. In that spirit, I present a review of several recent KO TF toys...


Wheeljack’s package is quite similar to the original G1 toy. Almost identical, except for a couple of issues. One, he’s attached to a cardboard backing in a plastic bubble (the original toy was encased in styrofoam to keep it stable). Interestingly, Wheeljack's profile says his function is "Mechanical Engineerp". This is the first time I've seen one of these with a really obvious typo on the package. Otherwise, Wheeljack's package is in iffy shape. The toy is off the cardboard package inside the box (I've had this before with the KOs. The glue isn't strong enough to keep them attached all the time. The original toys largely used styrofoam and didn't have this problem). Also, the Wheeljack box window is loose (again, bad glue). I'm not too bothered by it though.
    Wheeljack's stuff (missiles, weapons, stickers, instructions) were in a re-sealable bag instead of the usual style (i.e. open ended bag, one side folded over with a piece of tape). It made me wonder if someone had opened this toy before (the tape on the ends looked good, but...)
    Wheeljack's right fist and his right car doors is a bit loose (for something that should be new). The other side is a bit tight by comparison. I did manage to transform him okay... Also, his missile launchers work just fine. I've found previous KOs to be hit and miss in this department. Wheeljack has all his stickers (no rub symbol though). The toy has some diecast metal as well. Also, the toy has some trouble standing up straight--although this may be a design flaw (I never had an original, so I'm not sure).
    Verdict:  All in all, kind of middle of the road as these toys go.


As far as Sunstreaker goes... the box was in perfect shape with nothing loose. The toy also has die-cast metal, also has no rub sign but all his stickers are included (as well as accessories). He transformed a bit better then Wheeljack. His arms were folded quite tight in car mode and I was worried I might force them and snap them off when I changed him to robot mode but I managed to do it okay. His arm launchers also work fine. All in all, I would say Sunstreaker is an improvement over Wheeljack Verdict: I'd rank him among the best of these KOs.


Springer came in a box with a cardboard backing as well (instead of styrofoam). Like his G1 counterpart this toy has a metal chest and diecast parts. He was a breeze to transform and his part and weapons seem to work like they should. Top heavy toy (design problem, I guess).
Verdict:  Definitely one of the best KOs of recent years.


Shockwave actually did come in a styrofoam insert. He also has a sticker that looks like the traditional rub symbol–but doesn’t work ironically! His parts are snug and he transforms with no problems. The plastic and diecast parts on him feel pretty thick and well engineered. Even better, his electronics actually work! (I also have an original Shackwave and his sound chip is dead). His trigger is slightly different then Shackwave’s–Shackwave has a standard trigger but Knockwave has a flat piece on top of his (but who cares, really?)
Verdict: A very nice KO toy!

Shackwave on the left, Knockwave on the right.


A fairly sturdy toy in general–I can see and feel no structural problems on the fake. One major difference between the original Metrotitan and the KO is that the knock-off’s red parts are more of a hot pink instead (no idea why). One also needs to understand that this Metrotitan is just the KO Metroplex with new colors and it doesn’t completely replicate the original Metrotitan. For example, while the stickers are correct for Metrotitan, the instructions are for Metroplex’s stickers instead which can lead to confusion (the stickers don’t correspond so some of my sticker placement was guess-work). Also, KO Metrotitan doesn’t have the original toy’s Micromaster (Metrobomb–a recolor of MM Skystalker). He does have the other stuff though, such as Metrodash (Scamper), Metrotank (Slammer) and Metroshot (Six-Gun) in their correct Japanese colors. My Metrotitan’s left chest piece that folds out doesn’t stay down tight completely (however, I think this is a common problem for this mold–my old Metroplex did the same thing but my newer one doesn’t. So it’s not because it’s a KO specifically). Also, my Metrotitan came in a box decorated up as a G1 Metroplex toy (instead of being changed to look like a Metrotitan box). The toy was packed in styrofoam inside the box. (I've seen very few of this KO around on the internet--it came out shortly before Takara officially reissued their Metroplex toy. Could this actually be a *rare* knock-off?)
Verdict: Despite my concerns, a pretty good toy overall.

Up-close and personal!

Together at last!
Fake and loving it!