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Boss Fight Studio Vitruvian HACKS Gazoge

Available exclusively June 13th at noon Eastern at the Roma Collectibles eBay store!

Has it already been over five years since Boss Fight Studio first launched their Kickstarter, fueling fired up 1:18 scale action figure fans across the world? We’ve come a very long way since then and Boss Fight has amassed an impressive library of customizable parts and pieces for their vast Vitruvian HACKS universe.

The coming months and years should see even more excitement in the HACKS world as well as others when we get the opportunity to add Flash Gordon, Tarzan, Zorro, the Phantom and Court of the Dead to our already growing HACKS armies.

Meanwhile, the fantasy line continues to grow and evolve, and a figure like Gazoge only goes to show how endless the possibilities truly are, even with existing parts and pieces.

Gazoge has an interesting backstory. Designed as a split exclusive between Roma Collectibles and Boss Fight Studio themselves, Roma gets 500 pieces of the red version of Gazoge, while Boss Fight Studio gets 500 pieces of the blue version of Gazoge. The release of the blue version is still up in the air, but the red version you see here will be available at the Roma Toys eBay store this Saturday, June 13th starting at noon sharp.

So that’s the backstory of the figure… what about the figure itself?

As we’ve all come to expect with Boss Fight Studio, the end result is incredible, especially for a figure with zero new parts.

As usual, I really enjoy the bio for this character, designed as a self-trained warlock, an evil magic user who built his power through murder and evil, tapping into the malevolent demon Alor to grow his magical abilities.

Along with the Knights of Accord, Gazoge travelled to the Blasted Lands, which only served to enhance his power and his evil reputation…

DESIGN

The first time I saw this figure I knew we were in for something cool. Using the familiar armored torso, mage pants and long sleeves, Gazoge uses a nice mixture of Felonious and Samhain parts to put together a sinister looking evil warlock.

The paint applications are amazing here as well, borrowing a lot of the darker colors from the Knights of Asperity, but going with a bit of a glossier metallic shine on the armor. The sleeves and collar are painted with some great looking runes and even though the majority of the figure is painted in dark shades, it ends up being very striking.

As most of the fantasy figures do, Gazoge comes with three heads, including the default Skull, plus the two alternate heads from the Naga, which are two of my favorites. With some different hair color and the Asperity-like warpaint on the face, both of the other heads look new and unrecognizable from their previous iterations.

Each of the three heads has a wealth of character and mimicks some cool angles within the character’s bio (or could potentially represent the same character before and after traveling to the Blasted Lands). I’m not sure how easy it will be to get multiples of this figure, but it would be pretty awesome for Gazoge to recruit a couple of like-minded minions upon his emergence from the cursed land.

ARTICULATION

I mean, come on. This is Vitruvian HACKS we’re talking about. Boss Fight Studio has built its reputation on highly articulated and customizable action figures and Gazoge is no exception. He’s got the same base body parts as several other figures, so the range of motion is consistent across the rest of the HACKS line.

None of the additional parts or pieces restricts movement in any way, and whatever pose you come up with for Gazoge to move in, he can achieve relatively seamlessly. Great stuff, as expected.

ACCESSORIES

This is where Gazoge really shines. Boss Fight Studio went above and beyond to do some mix and match for a really awesome variety of accessories. One of the neatest angles was to take Samhain’s hammer and swap the hammer top out for the dragon from Felonious, which takes a blunt weapon and makes it something more. It looks like an enchanted energy weapon of some kind and I love it.

The dragon from the Dragon Harvester is included her as well, but its metallic shine makes it clear that it’s ornamental and not real, and it works nicely with the Mage Staff. Gazoge also comes with the dragon tooth sword from the Dragon Harvester which is a great touch. One of my favorite weapons.

Gazoge’s background as a warlock also means he comes with the requisite magic books (both closed and opened) and I love the fact that the opened book seems to have an homage to Roma written in ornate text. The sort of attention to detail you don’t generally get with other figures lines.

The included red flame also plugs into the book as it did with Felonious. I also really enjoy the vibrant gold colors of the dragon hammer and the mage staff, a really great splash of bright color to offset the darkness of the figure itself.

CONCLUSION

Vitruvian HACKS remains one of my favorite action figure lines going and Gazoge is no exception. It boggles my mind how they can take their common library of parts and create so many different incredible characters.

Gazoge is a fantastic addition to the Vitruvian HACKS universe and a gorgeous looking figure to boot.

General Gallery

Vitruvian HACKS Gazoge
  • Sculpting
  • Paint Applications
  • Articulation
  • Accessories
5

Summary

Such a great figure. Excellent use of existing tooling, subdued paint applications, but still very nicely done, and a really great backstory that weaves everything seamlessly together. This is a nice little snack as we wait for the upcoming Wave 6.

Pros

  • – Fantastic backstory
  • – Love the three alternate heads
  • – Tons of unique accessories
  • Cons

  • – Exclusive status might make it hard to get
  • – I’m ready to see some new tooling!
  • G.I. Joe: Classified – Duke

    Remember a few years ago, in the aftermath of G.I. Joe: Retaliation when the Joe fandom wondered if the time had really come for Hasbro to move away from Duke as a focal character of the G.I. Joe mythology?

    Never really happened. One look at G.I. Joe: Classified certainly indicates that Duke is still the man in charge, and he’s also the cream of the crop for figures in the inaugural wave of this new scale.

    I think it’s safe to say that Hasbro was trying to accomplish several different things with G.I. Joe: Classified.

    • They’re taking inspiration and influence from the Real American Hero mythology
    • They’re adding a few modern touches to try and bring G.I. Joe forward into the future
    • They’re steering clear from the hyper-real military weaponry in an attempt to appeal to mass retail

    With each of the first few figures in this line, they’ve had mixed results combining all of these goals. With Duke they’ve managed them all to near perfection.

    Duke really does encompass the best of what this line can be at a six inch scale, and manages to take a character that we’ve all gotten inundated with over the years and make him a very cool, highly desirable six inch figure that brings some great things to the table.

    DESIGN

    Design-wise, Duke is just about perfect. He clearly takes inspiration from his first appearance in 1983 with the tan button-up shirt and green pants, but this figure adds some great darker colors on the shirt in the way of stitched padding throughout the sleeves and shoulders as well as silver elbow pads.

    The green is darker than the original inspiration and looks a bit richer in tone and I really love the “cloth” texture of his pants. His head sculpt is terrific, with a ton of character, and the scar above his right eye looks really great.

    There’s a surprising amount of variation in the colors as well. His pants are a different color than his bandolier and his bandolier matches the pouches on his belt and holster, all of which ties several of these different hues together into one really nicely cohesive package.

    Duke’s got kneepads and a holster for his pistol, with a hole on the rear of his belt to hold his binoculars. He is crammed full of character, is immediately recognizable, yet brings a lot of modernization to the design.

    I know a lot of people have had issues with some of the brighter gold colors, not to mention the heavier armor sprinkled throughout these figures, especially in the case of Roadblock (and in some cases Scarlett). I think the armor is done really well for Duke, the gold on his lower legs toned down, while his elbow and kneepads are sculpted very close to the body and don’t detract from the overall design.

    Personally, I’m fine with adding some of these pseudo-sci-fi elements, G.I. Joe has always had them, and Duke is as close to perfect as it gets with these combined aesthetics.

    ARTICULATION

    Like Snake Eyes, Duke is absolutely loaded with functional articulation which enables a plethora of great poses. The multi-jointed neck, the butterfly shoulders, ab crunch, ball joint waist, drop down hips, double joints at the knees and elbows, not to mention the rocker ankles– Duke can get in pretty much any pose you come up with and I couldn’t be happier.

    Especially for G.I. Joe, articulation is key. It’s always been a hallmark of the Joes, ever since the 12″ figure’s debut in the 1960’s. With few exceptions, Hasbro has made sure to maintain state of the art articulation all the way through, and the G.I. Joe: Classified line has that in spades.

    ACCESSORIES

    A sore spot throughout many of the G.I. Joe: Classified figures, the accessory compliment is another thing that Duke does right. While it’s very clear that his weapons are not traditional military, they still have that sort of aesthetic, which is a big bonus over other figures in this first wave.

    One look at the neon blue elements of the rifle tells you that it doesn’t fire bullets, but it’s still a very cool looking weapon, which should be all that matters.

    He’s got his trusty backpack with embedded shovel, pistol with holster, and binoculars, a really awesome call back to the vintage figure, who came with all of these same accessories. He looks fntastic all geared up and has a place to store everything (as long as he holds his rifle in his hands), which is very cool indeed.

    Great job covering all bases with this one.

    PRESENTATION

    More unique art that separates Duke from the rest, but looks really good on its own. You have to wonder if at some point they’ll shoot for more unification across the different figures, but for now, I’m really enjoying the more artistic look by leveraging different style artists for the different figures. Gives them a bit of a more “high end” collector feel.

    CONCLUSION

    It’s been a long time since I was really fired up about a Duke figure, but this version of the character is a highlight in the first wave of G.I. Joe: Classified figures. Just getting my hands on this guy has made me long to see some other stalwart characters like Major Bludd, Zartan, or Flint. After all, if this is even close to what Hasbro is capable of, we could be in for a lot of fun over the next couple of years (and hopefully longer!)

    General Gallery

    Group Shots

    The Capture of Destro

    G.I. Joe Classified Duke
    • Sculpting
    • Paint Applications
    • Articulation
    • Accessories
    5

    Summary

    Duke really hits this scale right out of the park. Hasbro manages to take a pretty dated look and crank it to modernization thanks to some added textures, pads, and yes shin armor (that looks much better than it does on Roadblock!) The end result is a Duke that looks like a modern day sci-fi soldier while still looking immediately familiar to us old school fans. He’s got all the right colors, fantastic articulation and his accessories are a nearly perfect bridge between fantasy and military realism.

    Pros

  • – Nice modern update with some vintage flair
  • – Incredibly effective articulation
  • – Just the right modernization in all the right places
  • – Perfect way to do sci-fi oriented weapons without going overboard
  • Cons

  • – Would love this look in the 4″ scale
  • – Gold shin pads do impact ankle articulation just a little
  • Boss Fight Studio Bruiser

    Available for Pre-Order at BossFightShop.com

    Wow. This is a hefty chunk of plastic.

    I was pretty excited when Boss Fight Studio got the license for Bucky O’Hare figures, not necessarily because I’m a huge Bucky fan (though I have become one over the past year or so), but because I knew it meant just the first step in global domination for Boss Fight Studios. Now, as we prepare for an onslaught of Flash Gordon, Tarzan, Phantom, Lucha Libre figures, and many others, turns out my assumption was correct!

    In the meantime, we’ve also managed to get some absolutely incredible action figures for a fun 90’s property that doesn’t get the credit it deserves.

    As the brain child of Larry Hama and Neal Adams’ Continuity Studios, Bucky O’Hare was poised to do some amazing things back in the 90’s with a comic series, action figure line and animated series all exploding onto the scene. Unfortunately it never really took off, which meant several core cast members were never realized as action figures.

    While the vintage line did give us a Bruiser, the figure was pretty close to the same size as many of the other figures in the line, where this updated Boss Fight Studio version is an absolute monster.

    The first deluxe figure release in the line, Bruiser looms over the rest of the Bucky O’Hare crew, and as with the other figures in this line, he is absolutely dripping with character.

    The combination of animated-accurate design and incredible articulation blows me away as other figures in this line also have, providing figures that look as though they stepped straight from the screen, yet can pose and move in nearly any position you can imagine.

    As mentioned already, Bruiser is huge and heavy, feeling like a quality chunk of plastic, but with some revolutionary joints he can either stand (mostly) upright or hunch over like the gorilla he is, enabling a wealth of fun display options.

    Bruiser comes with two heads, one relatively calm head, another head that is decidedly un-calm, perfect for “croaking some toads”. He comes with swappable hands as well as a banana and a laser rifle. He’s equipped for almost anything.

    His straps also have the same sort of universal peg system that other figures have which can hold his (or other) weapons.

    The colors are terrific as usual as well, remaining very accurate to the source material, with an especially vibrant shade of silver for his armor. Boss Fight designers are truly artists when it comes to their color pallet, always finding the perfect pantone and combination of colors to really accentuate the figure.

    As time has gone on, Boss Fight has had the opportunity to consider deeper and deeper dives into the core cast of Bucky O’Hare figures. I really hope people are jumping on these pre-orders to give us the opportunity to round out this cast and keep digging through the vast possibilities of the Bucky O’Hare universe.

    This figure is available for pre-order now from BossFightShop.com and should be shipping shortly!

    Bucky O'Hare Bruiser
    • Sculpting
    • Paint Applications
    • Articulation
    • Accessories
    4.6

    Summary

    Bruiser is a behemoth of an action figure, standing tall and wide above the rest of the Bucky O’Hare cast, and is crammed full of character and color. As a deluxe figure it’s a hefty hunk of quality plastic with some great accessories and awesome playability. Articulation like crazy and a critical component of the crew of Righteous Indignation.

    Pros

    • HUGE figure, in scale with the rest of the crew
    • Great accessories, love the swappable hands and head
    • Stepped right from the comic and onto my toy shelf

    Cons

    • A bit more expensive than standard figures (but totally worth it)

    G.I. Joe: Classified – Destro

    When images of these new G.I. Joe: Classified figures were first getting released, the prevailing opinion among the G.I. Joe community seemed to be that they liked them, but also wondered why we weren’t just getting upscaled versions of our vintage favorites.

    Personally, I’m thrilled that Hasbro decided not to do that, and I’ve been relatively pleased with the changes they’ve made thus far. However, one figure that appears to have leaned very close to their vintage appearance is Destro.

    The question is, was that a good or bad thing? As I said above, I much prefer a more modern reinterpretation, and some of my favorite figures throughout the line are ones that went a different direction than the familiar appearance everyone is accustomed to.

    So what about Destro? In some ways I’m almost disappointed that they leaned so heavy into his vintage look. Destro is a character rife with possibilities and as I said, some of my favorite versions of the character are ones that didn’t align with popular appearance. City Strike Destro, Resolute Destro, Sigma 6, and Spy Troops were all versions of the character that brought really new things to the table in exciting ways.

    This figure chooses the familiar, but manages to work in enough modern touches to still make it feel new.

    One look at this figure and you know exactly who it is, he has all the hallmarks and familiar colors and design elements. But as you dig deeper into the figure you can start to see some of the interesting new textures that a larger scale lends itself to.

    DESIGN

    As I mentioned on the surface, this figure looks very much like the one we got in 1983. However, when you take a closer look, Hasbro took a lot of those cues, but added some great flair. The textured padding on his chest and shoulders, the lined seams on his leather jacket, as well as the intricate sculpting on his boots. It all adds up to a great update (if a minor one).

    The sculpting is impressive to say the least. He’s got a great mask and collar, very reminiscent of the old toy and the comic appearance. He’s got nicely broad shoulders and a larger stature, but retains the level of excellent articulation.

    Speaking of the sculpt work, one of the amazing things about seeing these figures at a larger scale is the amount of detail they’re able to work in. Just look at the base texture of the figure, all the small lines and wrinkles that immediately make him look as though he’s wearing a leather suit. I am really amazed at just how much texture they’re able to work into the sculpt here. Spectacular stuff.

    His primary colors are black, red and silver, as with the vintage version, though the use of the gold pistol is a nice call back to his 1988 Iron Grenadier roots. His red holster and silver belt are great additions as well and I love how many pistols and holsters these larger scaled figures come with.

    He’s got great gauntlets and his trusty rockets on his right wrist, and the basic color scheme is accented nicely by a dark gray that adds some breaks in color, but still stays relatively dark.

    The finer textures throughout the figure are excellent as well, the leather uniform actually looking like leather thanks to all of the fine sculpting detail throughout.

    ARTICULATION

    Destro’s articulation is flawless, like the other figures in this first wave. He’s got all of the range of motion of the other male figures in the line, which gives him the ability to maintain a bunch of dramatic positions. Whether he’s standing still, firing either of his weapons or his wrist rockets, he’s got perfect balance and great poseability.

    I can’t say enough good things about the poseability of this figure. Almost any pose you can think of, he can match. Such a joy to pose and play with.

    ACCESSORIES

    Taking some inspiration from City Strike Destro (though I have to give credit where it’s due — Sigma 6 was the first Destro to carry a briefcase), this G.I. Joe: Classified Destro has a fantastic opening briefcase with money and a mini-computer. I’ll admit – I’m not wild about the soft looking detail within the briefcase. It seems to me that if City Strike Destro can use nicely sculpted cash at a 1:18 scale, the six inch version should be able to as well.

    Still, a minor complaint.

    Destro also comes with a larger black laser pistol, somewhat reminiscent of a Star Wars weapon, then a smaller gold pistol which slides neatly into his thigh holster. Neither of the weapon is particularly exciting, though they’re not terrible either. I probably prefer the smaller pistol for pseudo-realism, but the larger pistol looks as though it packs a bigger punch.

    His accessory compliment isn’t amazing, but it’s fine, which is a step in the right direction compared to a figure like Roadblock.

    PRESENTATION

    Another great figure contained within another great box, and I find the design aesthetics of Destro’s artwork particularly striking. The side of the box with the close up of his head is amazing, and while the art is unique on each figure, it’s also uniquely cool.

    CONCLUSION

    Destro is one of my all time favorite characters in G.I. Joe lore and Hasbro does a very good job translating him to the six inch scale while maintaining his character and influence. In some ways I almost wish they went a different, more modern direction, but I can understand why they based this so strongly on the ’83 version and the end result is a definite hit with the fans.

    Great design, amazing articulation and quality accessories. There is literally nothing to really complain about here.

    General Gallery

    Group Shots

    The Capture of Destro

    G.I. Joe Classified Destro
    • Sculpting
    • Paint Applications
    • Articulation
    • Accessories
    4.6

    Summary

    Destro is a great looking six inch scale figure based strongly on his vintage look, which is a bit of a different approach than some of the other Classified figures. In Destro’s case I think it works well and they add just enough variety to make the figure pop. His articulation is fantastic, and while I might have preferred a bit of a different take, it’s tough to argue with perfection in execution here.

    Pros

  • – Slight modern touches accent heavy vintage influence
  • – A six inch Destro that fans have been clamoring for
  • – Simple, straight forward, but effective accessories
  • Cons

  • – Perhaps a little too slavishly influenced by the vintage version
  • – Detailing inside the suitcase is a little bland
  • G.I. Joe: Classified – Scarlett

    Ever since the beginning, one of the awesome things about G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero was a focus on strong characters, regardless of gender and certainly Scarlett was no exception. It was clear from the first issue of the G.I. Joe comic and the first episode of the G.I. Joe animated series that she was one of the heart and soul’s of the G.I. Joe team.

    From flying a Skystriker to low for Duke’s comfort or burying a throwing star in COBRA Commander’s gun arm, she’s been in the thick of it and I was thrilled to see her as a part of the first wave of G.I. Joe: Classified.

    Hasbro did a pretty bang up job on this figure, too. They managed to keep the basic design aesthetics of the vintage figure, all while giving her some nice new armored elements that thrust her into the future.

    A combination of layered body armor sculpting, impressive articulation cool accessories and really sharp paint applications gives this new Scarlett some great life, and I really love their choices here. While some of the figures suffer a bit from the abundance of gold (especially Roadblock) I think it works really well on Scarlett.

    An absolutely critical member of the G.I. Joe roster, Scarlett deserves her place in the inaugural wave of these new six inch figures and she gets a pretty terrific update.

    While there are some minor limitations to her articulation, the color breaks and textures of the suit are great and overall she brings some great color and vibrance to the Joe roster, especially at this larger scale.

    DESIGN

    From a design angle, Scarlett is almost a perfect update to the original, taking the overall shape and color of her 80’s unitard and translating it into something that bridges the future/military and super-hero divide very nicely.

    I absolutely love the armor she’s sporting, looking thick and protective, yet sleek as well, allowing for great range of motion. Her armored gauntlets and boots are terrific as well, and I find myself loving the little touches like the three throwing stars on her left forearm and what appear to be small “rocket” boots at her calves. At least that’s what they are in my little world!

    The color combinations are really nice, too, a mixture of blue, green and tan, a nice amalgamation of several different hues from Scarlett’s history. All of the different shades work well with the sculpt breaks on the body suit and armor, the overall appearance very eye-catching and appealing.

    G.I. Joe has always existed in this strange place between real world military and comic book sci-fi, and this version of Scarlett really seems to lunge full speed into comic book sci-fi, and to be honest, I’m glad for it. She’s never had a full-blown military look or feel and this updated armored bodysuit is an excellent evolution from some previous appearances.

    The shoulder pad and star on her left shoulder feels like a nice call-out to her Devil’s Due appearance as well, which featured a very similar design aesthetic. Her hair is nicely painted, though I would have loved a bit more of a red wash just to darken it up some. I find myself really loving the paint work on her face, including the light application of freckles underneath her eyes. Very well done.

    I really love the strap, sheath and quiver over her torso, too, giving her room for all three of her throwing knives, which is a really awesome touch.

    ARTICULATION

    For the most part, Scarlett’s articulation is fantastic. Multiple torso joints, ball-joint neck and shoulders, double-jointed knees and rocker ankles. She’s capable of falling into a wealth of effective poses. Like the other figures she has “drop-down” hips which give her more sideways motion as well.

    There’s only one hitch with her articulation. Because she’s got such skinny arms, she doesn’t get double-jointed elbows like her male counterparts. It’s not a huge take away, but I feel like it needs to be mentioned.

    In spite of her layered body armor and aside from the aforementioned elbows, she maintains a great range of motion and fantastic articulation, a hallmark of G.I. Joe action figure design that is here in spades.

    ACCESSORIES

    Well, this is certainly the hottest topic in any of the discussions around G.I. Joe: Classified. Scarlett I think manages to walk the line perfectly. Unlike many other members of the G.I. Joe team, Scarlett has never been known for her heavy duty military weapons compliment. The crossbow has been her stalwart, and it remains so here.

    It’s a pseudo-futuristic crossbow with a pretty cool design aesthetic, with a removable top and bottom. I’m not sure what the benefit to taking the crossbow apart is, but it does come apart if you’re so inclined.

    Along with the crossbow, she comes with three small knives, one of which fits neatly in a sheath on her chest strap, while the other two slide in place in sheaths within her quiver on her back. I love that she’s got places for all three knives, it’s that sort of detail that I really enjoy about the G.I. Joe: Classified line. So far none of them have come with accessories they didn’t have a place to store. A small point, but a valid one.

    Scarlett’s accessories don’t blow my socks off, but they make sense for the character and are a nice inclusion. The trio of knives are the definite highlights for me, it adds a cool element to the character and I really dig the sheaths, too.

    Good stuff.

    PRESENTATION

    Like the other figures in the first wave of G.I. Joe: Classified, Scarlett has unique artwork on her box, in this case done by Phil Noto an acclaimed artist of comic books and other things. The art looks terrific (though somehow I neglected to take a picture of the other side of the box), though I do agree with some complaints that a lack of unification across all packaging can be a bit jarring for MIB collectors.

    CONCLUSION

    Scarlett is one of my favorite characters in G.I. Joe lore and I’m thrilled that such an important piece of A Real American Hero history ended up in wave 1 of the G.I. Joe: Classified line. Her modern updates are terrific, adding a fantastic sci-fi flair while still keeping some solid homages to her old school appearances.

    The shining point for sure is the face paint with the freckles and the eyes, though she’s got amazing paint throughout the entire figure with a great mixture of gold that works far better for her than for some of her compatriots.

    All things considered, this figure is terrific and the G.I. Joe: Classified line is off to an amazing start.

    General Gallery

    Group Shots

    The Capture of Destro

    G.I. Joe Classified Scarlett
    • Sculpting
    • Paint Applications
    • Articulation
    • Accessories
    4

    Summary

    As one of the founding members of G.I. Joe, I was thrilled to see Scarlett included in wave one of G.I. Joe: Classified, and she’s got some great updates to boot. A terrific sculpt, great modernized design aligned with her vintage look and her familiar trademark accessories. The narrow sculpting of her female form unfortunately sacrifices some key articulation, but the figure is great otherwise.

    Pros

  • – Nice modern update with some vintage flair
  • – The combination of head sculpt and paint on the face is on point
  • – The gold trim really shines on Scarlett
  • Cons

  • – No double joints in the elbows
  • – Decent accessories, but could have used a bit more
  • G.I. Joe: Classified – Roadblock

    When you hear the name Roadblock, this guy is pretty much what you expect. He is a huge, imposing figure at the 6″ scale and while he’s not aesthetically perfect, he does bring some interesting things to the table.

    The first thing you notice as you purchased and rip open your G.I. Joe: Classified figures is that they are extremely varied in size and shape, which is awesome. For a long time, G.I. Joe figures were built off of a common “buck” meaning every figure was constructed to be relatively the same height and size, with only slight variations here and there.

    While the modern era did work to change that somewhat, the formula of re-using parts for different characters often meant that heights and figure sizes weren’t always represented 100% accurately (Leatherneck I’m looking at you).

    Now, at least for the moment, with each figure in this first assortment being uniquely sculpted and tooled, you end up with some really great variation, and at the top of that scale is Roadblock.

    Standing a full head taller and with huge arms and legs, Roadblock immediately separates himself from the crowd as the guy carrying the heavy weapon (more talk about that particular weapon later).

    There’s something about the size and weight of this figure that’s a ton of fun, and feels different somehow than previous iterations of the character. This is a Roadblock who feels like a Roadblock and in a group shot he’s clearly the focal point.

    DESIGN

    Looking at design first, Roadblock looks pretty good, though not perfect. As mentioned, the sculpting is fantastic, the overall size is spot-on, and he has a ton of redeeming qualities. The vest is an excellent throwback to the 1986 version of the character and I love the fingerless gloves, the removable knife and the plain military style pants are great as well.

    He’s got a great tattoo on his left arm as well, which is very nicely designed and a great touch for the figure.

    But things aren’t all sunshine and roses. Lots of folks out there have had complaints about the paint scheme of the figures, and I don’t really have a huge problem with it necessarily. I think some elements of vibrant colors, as long as they make sense, are good for the figure and bring some pleasing aesthetics to what might normally be a bunch of greens and browns.

    Speaking of greens, that’s the color that makes up most of Roadblock’s uniform and it works well, but then they introduce some gold in the boot armor and the kneepad which feels a little jarring. It’s not terrible, I don’t hate it, it just seems a little out of place.

    I do like the sculpted boot armor, however, unlike many of the more vocal fans out there. I see G.I. Joe as having very strong influences from science-fiction and future tech, and I don’t want to see salvish military recreations. The armored boots work well for that, I just think the vibrant gold maybe wasn’t the best choice.

    I’m also a little conflicted about the vest. After so many years of modern era figures, a guy like this with a cool vest that is not removable seems like an odd decision. I mean, you can cut it off of him, sure, but once you do that, it’s gone and you’re not going to get it back together. On the flip side, though, nothing drove me crazier during the modern era than people with the vest clasps that just would not close, so in that way I almost prefer it like this for aesthetic reasons.

    Like I said, conflicted. The perfect solution would be to use a clasp system that kept it closed effectively, but still allowed it to be removable. I would think on a larger figure like this, that wouldn’t be so difficult.

    All of this being said, however, I do think the overall design aesthetic is solid. A nice combination of military and sci-fi, and the character is immediately recognizable as Roadblock.

    Great sculpting from head to toe, I love the boots, the vest is great, I’m just not sold on the bright gold and wish they’d done a little something else to make the vest removable.

    ARTICULATION

    All in all, tough to argue with the articulation. Roadblock’s got pretty close to the same range of motion as Snake Eyes, which is pretty impressive for a larger figure.

    If I have any complaints, the rubber vest prevents some significant range of motion in the torso, which isn’t a deal breaker by any means, but it does have an impact.

    From the butterfly shoulders to the ball-jointed neck and waist, the drop-down hips, double jointed knees, swivel calves and rocker ankles, Roadblock has everything covered.

    Now, with the figure’s somewhat larger stature, his range of motion isn’t quite as impressive as Snake Eyes, but, you know… he’s not a ninja, so. He can achieve any pose I attempt and can hold his balance remarkably well, even while holding his massive rail gun.

    ACCESSORIES

    Speaking of his massive rail gun…

    First and foremost, my GeneralsJoes hot take – The M2 Browning is a World War I era weapon and it’s completely insane and ridiculous to think that Roadblock would be carrying that weapon in the G.I. Joe universe where there are jet packs, laser guns, and android troopers.

    Yes, I know it’s still in service, but G.I. Joe is about future-tech. The Ma-Deuce is about as far from future tech as you can get. Let go of your nostalgia.

    Whew. Okay. I feel better.

    Now, just because I’m not all broken hearted about a lack of a six inch scale M2, doesn’t mean I think this gun is good. This gun is clunky, weirdly designed and overall– just not much fun. I think Hasbro could have certainly done something that wasn’t a realistic heavy machine gun, but was also better than whatever this thing is.

    The huge weapon Roadblock comes with also comes with a removable magazine and there’s a removable knife that fits into the sheath on Roadblock’s vest.

    The handle of the knife is way too small to actually be held by Roadblock, however.

    All things considered, a character who is at least somewhat defined by his accessories (he’s a heavy weapons specialist, after all) does not come with very good accessories. That’s a pretty big miss in my book, though thankfully it’s just about the only big miss in the first wave of G.I. Joe: Classified figures.

    PRESENTATION

    Anyone who was a fan of G.I. Joe during the Rise of COBRA era knows Mike Thompson’s work well, and I’m thrilled that Hasbro tapped him to work on this series, too. Roadblock’s artwork is top notch. Mike did a spectacular job on it, as we should all come to expect. Once again there isn’t a whole lot of consistency across different packages, but at least as a one-off this works well.

    CONCLUSION

    It feels like I’ve been waiting forever for the G.I. Joe: Classified line to hit, and by and large, I’ve been impressed. Roadblock is probably my least favorite of Wave 1, mostly because of his accessories, but he’s still a wicked fun action figure and what feels like a good representation of the familiar character.

    General Gallery

    Group Shots

    G.I. Joe Classified Roadblock
    • Sculpting
    • Paint Applications
    • Articulation
    • Accessories
    3.5

    Summary

    This figure isn’t perfect, but still a very enjoyable addition to the G.I. Joe: Classified roster. Roadblock’s imposing size, vintage callbacks and intricate tattoo on his left arm are all great tweaks to a character that has remained a focal point of G.I. Joe history. While I’m seeing many complaints about his accessories, I will acknowledge their flaws, but I’m still glad to see them looking forward instead of backwards.

    Pros

  • – Terrific articulation
  • – Great sculpting and an imposing size
  • – Excellent callbacks to vintage asthetics, and great deco
  • Cons

  • – Color scheme is hit or miss, gold feels out of place
  • – Odd accessory design
  • – Non-removable vest which also restricts articulation