Thursday, January 28, 2010

Attack on the Pit!

That's Toys R Us Exclusive GI Joe Rise of Cobra Attack on the Pit, to be precise.

What's amazing about this 3.75" 5 figure + 1 vehicle set is that it never hit retail in Toys R Us stores here in Singapore.  So you can imagine my surprise when I saw it going on clearance in the major local department stores for just S$24.90, that's about US$17-18.  Now that's some crazy amount of discount on a movie scene set that retails for US$40-50 online.  And there's tons of them in the stores here.  So this just means that every Joe fan in or around Singapore just got lucky, myself included.

But put side by side with other sets in the Rise of Cobra series, such as the TRU Infiltrator 5-Packs (One with Duke and gang, and one with Zartan and 4 Joes), Attack on the Pit falls short of being great.  I mean, it's a really memorable scene from the movie but on it's own as a playset it seems more like a 'starter' set than an exclusive.  More after the jump!

Now why a starter?  Well, because 4 of the 5 guys come with the same two firearms, only one has a working holster, and only another has a backpack.  So as far as accessories for Joes go, this set is frankly lacking.

What's worse is that the assault rifle these 4 dudes share is the annoying one with the magazine behind the grip, making 2 handed poses with the weapon pretty difficult.  I just really hate those types of rifles.

But let's take a step back and break this playset down to the individual guys and the Mole Pod.

The Attack on the GI Joe Pit Headquarters comes with: a desert camo and slacks variant Duke, a Joe Blue slacks Ripcord in kevlar body armour, a green uniform Pit Trooper, a Neo-Viper Officer, a Neo-Viper, and a variant black Mole Pod.

Let's start with everyone's (meaning mine) all-time favourite Joe, Duke:

Like: He's a variant! Great desert Camo vest that fits nicely and pegs together on both sides, making taking the vest off easy if need be.

Like: Nice rolled up sleeves for the 'down-time' effect.

Dislike: His dark coloured hair.  I know, I know.  Chaaning Tatum has brown hair.  But dammit, Duke always has been and always will be blond in my book.

Dislike: The excess flash along his jaw-line.  Maybe this is just down to the figure I picked, but it's unlike Hasbro to neglect these little details.

Dislike: That he only comes with 2 guns and they're the same as everyone else's except for the Neo-Viper Officer's.  Ok, so there's the nice camo vest too.  But dammit, throw in a backpack or a holster, or even a knife.  Heck, throw in a BFG as well!  Ok maybe definitely not the BFG, but how about maybe a hat?


Like: The black shirt/blue slacks combo.  I can add him to my 'Blue Sqaud' of Hawk, Sgt Stone, Shipwreck, Cover Girl, Arashikage Cycle Snake Eyes, Breaker and Zartan.

Like: The head sculpt.  They've gotten the faces of Ripcord, Duke, Hawk, Destro (SDCC), and Storm Shadow spot on.  And in this scale it's really admirable that they've taken the effort to do this.  Bravo, Hasbro!

Dislike: His body armour is like one size too big.  It jiggles around and because of the size, doesn't quite seem to be meant for Ricord.  The kevlar vest is the same one they put on Sgt Stone, but I haven't opened mine yet so I don't know if Stone shares the same problem.

Dislike: The 2 generic gun problem.  Real Bummer.

Pit Trooper

Like: That he's a repaint of Zartan with the generic head instead of the Arnold Vosloo head.  Besides these two, I can only think of Pit Commando as the only generic Joe troop builder.  And Pit Commando is really hard to find and expensive when you  do find him. So I like that the Joes also have a flunky that can die like random Neo-Vipers. Hah. :P

Like: His amy green camo uniform.  Besides being different from the regular blue Joe camo, the green, deep green and white they've used looks really good on the average trooper.  It's kinda like what I wear when recalled to serve the nation.  I guess that makes me sort of a flunky as well.  But somehow it feels good that I get to look like a Joe for about 2 weeks in a year. Even if it's the lowliest ranking of them all.  I could take the code name Flunker.  Yeah.  Awesome. :P

Dislike:  That his head is cut too high on the back and a little bit of the sides, giving him a bobble head appearance from the back.  But this does also give him really nice head articulation when he's looking upwards.

Dislike: Generic Weapons!

Neo-Viper Officer

Like: This guy is a MARS Trooper Officer with a Neo-Viper head.  And that's a good thing because that's easily one of the better paint jobs to have.  He's also got the best combat webbing, which comes his a usable chest holster.

Like: That he's got an extra neck scarf piece that serves no purpose other than to look good.  It's kinda like the coffee table that brings the room together.  You don't really drink coffee on it but it's there because, well, it's there.

Dislike: That I just realized this guy, along with the Neo-Vuper, has got no wrist articulation.  The other figures have it but not the bad guys.  Screwed again!  The good guys have all the advantages.  It's just not fair for Cobra Commander and his troops. :(


Well I won't talk about him again since he's your standard Neo-Viper.  I reviewed him here.

Mole Pod

Perhaps the most disappointing part of the set but not unexpectedly so.  I never felt inclined to get one of these when they were sole separately with the Terra-Viper.  After seeing this one and getting to play with it, I'm not about to change my opinion soon. The Pod is more or less a box with a drill on it that rotates when the wheels run along the ground.  It fits one guy and doesn't do much else.

Still, it's a vehicle from the movie that saw use by COBRA so it's nice to have.

Oh wait, it does do one more thing: fire a BFG missile from out front.


Aesthetics: 9/10 - The figures are done well enough but I've definitely seen better from the ROC line.  There just seems to be less effort put into this one set.

Poseability: 9.5/10 - They all have your standard Joe articulation.  Even the Vipers, who are short of 2 wrist PoA, still have standard Viper articulation.

Fun: 8.5/10 - Could be more fun if not for the really bland selection of weapons for accessories.  Even the Pit background from the packaging has a lot of potential for photos.  But let's not forget what make GI Joe fun is the variety of guns/equipment each figure comes with.

Value: 9/10 - It's high because out works out to be US$3 + for a figure.  And that's not even counting the Mole Pod!  But it's not that high because of how blah the weapons are and how so-so of a vehicle the Mole Pod is.

Overall: 9/10 - Not bad at all and probably even great for someone who is just starting out his/her Joe collection.  For someone who's already got their share of ROC figures, this one is either a COBRA troop + vehicle builder or spare parts, especially when it comes to the 2 main good guys in Duke and Ripcord.


  1. If it's so cheap, why not buy a few and put on ebay USA?

  2. Because if you can't sell it, then you're stuck with a pile of toys that you don't need. Shipping to the US is the big disincentive for collectors there to buy from us here, especially when they can get about the same prices during a sale at Walmart. Of course I had to find out about this the hard way... :P

    Come see my store-room sometime...LOL.


  3. Haha, yes, young Padawan, we have the Old Jedi Master's mistakes to learn from. :P

    But I suspect that these sets come from the US anyways, so it's a surplus there that's causing Hasbro to ship it over here and sell it at cost and even for a loss, perhaps.

    Good thing all new HDB flats come with a 'bomb shelter', eh? Those are really store rooms for every adult male Singaporean's excess toys. Lol.


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