Saturday 26 August 2017

Masterpiece Artfire MP-37

Profile (Translated from the Trading Card)
MP-37 Cybertron Targetmaster Sniper Artfire
Function: Sniper
Motto: “Sniping or Rescue - timing is everything.”
Cybertron warrior Artfire is a sniper who possesses both patience and bravery; has a lot of affection for his team-mates. Combines the use of his ladder along with his partner Nightstick when transformed into a Beam Cannon to improve his sniping accuracy. With his robust body and rescue ability he plays an active role in a variety of situations.
STR:8; INT:7; SPD:8; END:6; RNK:5; CRG:10; FBL:5; SKL:8

MP-37 Artfire is a redeco of MP-33 Inferno much like the original G1 Artfire. Originally released in 1987 as a Targetmaster in Takara's Headmaster series, Artfire did not see a release in Hasbro's toyline. However Hasbro's 1987 Targetmaster Scourges partner, Fracas, was used as the Targetmaster for Artfire but renamed Nightstick, taking the name from Targetmaster Cyclonus’ partner. The Nightstick Targetmaster that came with Cyclonus was also used in Takara's Headmaster series and was partnered with Stepper and renamed Nebulon.

Artfires fist's were remoulded to fit the Targetmaster weapon and he came with a gun mount accessory to attach Nightstick to the ladder in vehicle mode. Artfire did not come with Infernos gun or missiles.

Masterpiece Artfire unlike the G1 version it is not remoulded and is just a straight repaint. Artfire is deeper red in colour compared to Inferno and has a glossy paint finish. Whereas Masterpiece Inferno has a basic look to mimic the simplified cartoon model, Artfire features numerous tampographs to replicate the stickers on the original figure. It would have been nice to see this on Inferno and Grapple as well.

Artfire comes with fewer accessories than Inferno, coming with the same gun, a shouting face and of course, Nightstick. In robot mode, Artfire is quite possible, certainly a lot better than previous Masterpiece Transformer offerings, however the waist swivel is slightly hindered. For weapon storage, as with MP-33 Inferno, the handgun can be pegged into Artfires back and the forearms open up to swap the fists with the chrome nozzles. The clearance when swapping Artfires fists is minimal unlike Infernos, combined with the painted gloss black fists its not something to do regularly. Compared to Inferno, my version of Artfire has incredibly stiff joints making Transformation difficult, especially when opening the forearms to rotate the fists. Just like Inferno, the transforming ladder is a marvel, being able to hide in the chest cavity.

In vehicle mode, Artfire is a licensed Mitsubishi Fuso T951. The ladder can be raised, lowered and extended, however the ladder does not extend as long as the G1 version. At the end of the ladder there is a fold out nozzle, at the rear of the ladder there is a port to attach either the hand gun or Nightstick in gun mode. The panel at the top of the cab flips up to reveal another port to plug in the handgun or Nightstick. The Japanese text on the side of the cab is identical to the G1 Artfire; it simply reads "Fire Department". The original 1983 Diaclone Fire Truck (aka Inferno) also had Japanese text but that read "Fire Station". Vehicle mode also features chromed out riggers which can be extended out of the side of the vehicle mode and lengthened to reach ground level.

If you had to choose between Artfire or Inferno, I would choose Artfire mainly for the detail and Nightstick. The additional accessories Inferno comes with are really surplus to requirements; however I did appreciate being able to change the overall look to be based on the G1 you or animation model. Inferno can also use Artfire's face for even more toy accuracy.

Scan of the translated extended bio

Vehicle Mode: Fire Engine (Translated from the instruction pamphlet)
Artfire transforms into a firetruck; he rushes to disaster scenes extinguishing fires and rescuing the vulnerable. His sturdy body is equipped with a ladder and pumps; being a distinctive white and red colour gives a stylish impression to the onlooker. In the event of a disaster he rushes to the scene in vehicle mode; when there are people trapped in a building his friend Nightstick is responsible for their rescue using Artfires ladder. Vehicle mode is not only used for rescue operations but is also specialised in combat operations. The vehicles outriggers deploy and Artfire unites with Nightsticks Space Beam Cannon transformation for his Sniper Mode. For ultra long-range sniping, Artfire developed an electromagnetic acceleration rail for his ladder which enables him to shoot a hole in a pebble on the surface of the moon when firing from Earth. This is a “Super Fire Engine”, suitable for both rescue and sniping activities.

Robot Mode: Artfire (Translated from the instruction pamphlet)
Function: Targetmaster / Sniper
Motto: “Sniping or Rescue - timing is everything.”
Artfire has the patience to wait for opportunities, a brave sniper remaining undaunted in any predicament. His specialised armour can withstand heat of up to 8,000oC, coupled with his patience he is able to keep calm on the battlefield and during disasters. In the event of disasters he rescues people trapped in buildings with his friend Nightstick, together they have saved many lives. Although Artfire is usually calm, due to the amount of rescue operations he has been involved in, he has also experienced the loss of friends. Because of this, in some situations he disregards dangers and ignores orders. With a fire engine transformation and his best friend Nightstick able to support Artfire in a number of situations, this enables him to be a highly adaptable Cybertron warrior, capable of handling sniping and rescue operations. Closely linked with another Targetmaster warrior, Stepper and Nebulon. When these 4 individuals are together they demonstrate perfect teamwork. On any disaster site those who see the appearance of Artfire are relieved; this is because they know they will be saved.

Weapon: Targetmaster Nightstick (Translated from the instruction pamphlet)
Nightstick is a Targetmaster who turns into a Space Beam Cannon. Compared with Artfires calm demeanour, Nightstick is a practical joker however they share a strong bond as seen when they work together in times of emergency. Part of Nightsticks role is to help Artfire focus when he loses his composure when his friends are in trouble.

Weapon: Nightstick Target On (Translated from the instruction pamphlet)
Although Artfire is an excellent sniper by his own merit, Nightstick joins at his wrist in “Target On” mode, an attack function demonstrating considerable fighting power even at short range. The fire power is not only used to eliminate enemies obstructing their rescue activities but it also has enough destructive power to alter the landscape to help them quickly get to site.

Weapon: Extinguisher Rifle (Translated from the instruction pamphlet)
Mainly undertaking logistical support and sniping activities, Artfire is also often sent out to undertake rescue operations in the event of incidents in battle. To aid himself, he built himself a gun which can be used for debris removal and fire suppression. When a ladder is not needed or Nightstick is absent, he can perform battle or rescue operations with his extinguisher rifle.

View the full gallery here on Flickr.

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