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Trasformer

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Trasformer (sic!) was a unique international release of Takara's Diaclone and MicroChange lines by an Italian company named GiG that was launched in 1984. The toys are infamous for featuring several characteristics of Hasbro's Transformers versions of those toys, even though GiG initially only had a license from Takara for importing their Diaclone versions.

History

In 1983, GiG had acquired the license for selling imported Diaclone and MicroChange toys on the Italian market from Takara. Initially, GiG simply released the toys under the name Diaclone, such as the Dia-Battles combiner, the Dia-Train or the Power Bases playsets.

However, when Hasbro had launched their Transformers version of the line with considerable success the following year, GiG quickly realized the potential. Since GiG didn't want to pay for a second license, they came up with quite an original concept: As they couldn't directly mimick Hasbro's Transformers toys, they would now release the Diaclone toys in color schemes based on the Hasbro versions, even using the same sticker sheets as the Hasbro toys, omitting the pilots (in most cases, anyway) and renaming the line into Trasformer, with the Diaclone "Car Robos" (the Autobot Cars) being called "Auto Robots". The packaging, however, was still more or less based on Takara's Diaclone packaging, and the toys featured no bios or any kind of fiction that would identify them as Hasbro's Transformers characters. The Trasformer line also included the Diaclone Triple Changer, which was never released as part of the Transformers line. On the other hand, GiG also undertook some bizarre safety modifications, replacing the toys' regular missiles with all-new missiles that featured ridiculously oversized rubber tips. Interestingly enough, GiG also released their version of the Omega Supreme mold as part of the Trasformer line, even though toy wasn't licensed from Takara, but another company named ToyBox.

Obviously, Hasbro weren't too happy about this and thus quickly pressured GiG into acquiring a proper license. In 1985, GiG then abandoned the Tranformer line and instead re-released the toys in actual Transformers packaging, albeit keeping a small remainder of the old Trasformer logo in addition to the larger Transformers logo (the small Trasformer logo would finally be dropped for good starting with the Pretenders toys from 1988). Still, GiG would keep their ties with Takara, which allowed them to release toys as part of the Transformers line which Hasbro would never release (such as a Bruticus giftset or Galaxy Shuttle).

Toys

Auto Robot

Dinosaur Robots

Tripla Trasformazione

  • Aereo A Tripla Trasformazione (Pre-Blitzwing, or Pre-Overcharge)
  • Elicottero A Tripla Transformazione (jet/helicopter Triple Changer; never released as a Transformer and fan-named "Switchblade")

Scatter

Destroy Car

  • [unnamed] (Diaclone Change Attacker "Oneboxcar Vanette"; never released as a Transformer)
  • [unnamed] (Diaclone Change Attacker "Starion Turbo 2000"; never released as a Transformer)
  • [unnamed] (Diaclone Change Attacker "Lamborghini Cheetah"; never released as a Transformer)

Others

TAKARA

  • MC-11 Magnum Robo (No Transformer release, but see Shockwave)
  • MC-12 Walther P-38 (Predecessor of the Japanese version of Megatron)
  • MC-13 UNCLE Walther P-38 (Predecessor of the US/European version of Megatron)
  • MC-17 Lock Robo Dial Man. (Transforms from a working dial lock to a robot. No Transformer release)
  • MC-18 Lock Robo Magneman. (Transforms from a working key lock to a robot. No Transformer release)
  • A number of watches including Crono Laser, or fan-named "Chopper".

OTHERS

Trivia

  • "Ligier JS11 F-1", the Trasformer version of Mirage, sports "Ligier" decals on the sides of the vehicle mode rather than the standard "Citanes" logos found on the Diaclone and Transformers versions. Two known variants exist, with either "Ligier" stickers covering the original tampographed "Citanes" logos, or tampographed "Ligier" logos.
  • Although "Camion Convoy", the Trasformer version of Optimus Prime, is shown in catalogs, no packaged sample has surfaced thus far, hence making it impossible to tell whether the toy has actually ever been released or not.

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