Galaxy Defender

Happy Well Toys
Released: Around 2006 (I got mine at TFcon 2007)
Price: Varies (mine was $10 Cdn.)

Comments: Strictly speaking, this is not a Transformers knock-off per se. Since the design is originally from the Japanese Macross series, it's actually a Macross knock-off (it's actually possible it could be officially licensed from the Asian market. I'm not certain).
   This toy stands about the same height as the original Jetfire toy but he is grey, silver and green instead (I actually like the color scheme. It's different but not garish).
   Quality-wise, you get what you pay for. The toy has all three transformation modes that the Valkyrie/Veritech fighter should but the plastic is sub-par (it could be worse though. I spent $20 for a smaller toy of this design at a Botcon and the plastic from that licensed product was total garbage while this one is bigger, cheaper and a bit better). One of the toy's attenae broke when I was transforming the first time (so now he has three gun ears instead of four). Upon my most recent attempt to change him into the fighter mode the toy felt like it was falling apart but I managed it anyway. Strangely, this toy has diecast metal wheels and hip/vents (one wouldn't expect such a thing on so cheap a product). The legs are hard to swing around from robot mode back into fighter mode though (you really have to fight with it to get them to go the right way again).
  If you don't want to spend upwards of $150-200 for an official Masterpiece Valkyrie toy then this option is adequate. Just barely. I just leave mine posed on the desk--playing with it for prolonged periods would certainly cause it to break.


Front of the box

Back of the box

    In 2000, the Fortress Maximus mold was reissued as part of the Car Robots line in Japan. A failed attempt to put it out in the United States for Robots in Disguise later resulted in many getting a Korean version instead (unfortunately, I'm one of the suckers who didn't realize it would come out for cheaper and opted to spend $300 on an original Japanese CR release instead). As anyone who owns this mold knows, the weapons and drone robots are not included along with the toy (for some reason).
   Enter the KOs!
   At BotCon 08 I found a dealer selling red or blue guns for this toy and snapped up the red set (which is for the Brave Maximus apparently). More recently, I hunted down a sword for my toy to complete it (weapon-wise anyway. I still don't have the little robots like Cog or Sprocket).
   The two guns are pretty nice and fit the mold perfectly. The plastic is good and thick and it was a worthwhile purchase overall (they were $20 USD at the time). (The guns came in a plastic bag while the sword had its own box, pictured above).
   The sword was more expensive (I forget how much, but it was a lot) but it's cool too. Supposedly the blue one is for Brave Maximus (which makes no sense to me. How can he need red guns but a blue sword?) Anyway, I bought the red sword and am happy with it. It also has an optional mode where it can be made into a spear instead of a sword (for use with MP Prime or Omega Prime). Once the spear bottom  is applied to the blade it's very tight and damn near impossible to remove (I did it once and will never try again). Ideally someone should have one sword and another for the spear. There was a similar set to this available from some of the online stores last year but that was a smaller sword that could also become shields. I don't think it could be Fort Max's sword too (or at least the pictures didn't make that clear). A cool enough accessory if you can find it (try ebay. That's where mine is from) and can afford it.

These bottoms pictures are of the more recent set (which does not have the hilt necessary to use it with Fortress Maximus).


Protectrobots set

Released: Spring 2010
Price: $82 USd  (


- The box is a spot-on replica of the original.

- The toys have no rub signs on them--but they are included as optional stickers. Furthermore, they do work! (Unlike with my KO Shockwave).

- Some of the toys weren't finished/filed down properly and had little bits of plastic on them where there should've been none (extra little gob of plastic on First Aid's leg which I removed. Others had this sort of thing too).

- Blades plastic feels a bit thinner then my original toy does. He's not brittle or anything--but he does feel a little bit thinner to the touch.

- All the toys have metal parts on them (my three originals were all plastic).

- Some of the paint could be better. Hot Spot's eye has a black streak on it because the paint was done cheaply. (It's hard to see but it's there).

A decent effort, all in all. I've seen better and also far worse. As a substitute for the real thing, this is okay (I would still prefer an official reissue though).