The Cosmic Chaos line is Imaginext's space-themed range of toys and vehicles. If you've been reading our Reviews (and if not, why not?) you'll know how much fun the various Imaginext lines are and how the Cosmic Chaos range - with its retro toy homages and great play features - is a firm favorite of ours.
Can this streak of awesome continue? Read on and find out...
Cosmic Chaos Ion Scorpion
Retailing at $8, the Ion Scorpion set is pretty much inline with what we've come to expect from the toys at this great price point, namely a neat little vehicle, a pilot/driver figure and an accessory (or two.) I love the fact that the Imaginext line offers such superb value for money and this set is no exception.
So let's start with the Ion Scorpion vehicle...
The Ion Scorpion
The Ion Scorpion is a two-wheeled, ground-based craft, themed around - as the name has probably given away - a scorpion.
The scorpion-inspired design sits somewhere between a Micronauts Aliens vehicle and something from the classic Masters of the Universe line, yet is still original in its own right. Although it may look a little weird, that's kind of the point, as it's supposed to be an alien craft...
There's some great up-close detail here. Every surface is textured in some way, with an assortment of spines and bumps really selling the idea of a biomechanical craft (the Imaginext blurb actually implies it may be a living creature the alien pilot is riding.) There's also a pretty decent amount of detail within the driver's position, with a padded-effect seat and a couple of control sticks (which fit neatly into the figure's hands...)
The wheels roll reasonably well (although it can struggle on smoother surfaces) and they have a cool ''claw-like'' feel to them. It's a shame they're not four-pointed (mimicking a scorpion's eight legs) but then they'd have looked like swastikas and we'd probably be hearing local news stories about an evil toy company pushing a Nazi agenda... Still, I like the way they move, as it gives the impression of something walking or crawling, rather than simply rolling along.
The tail has a ratcheted joint, allowing it to be moved (thus allowing access to the cockpit) or it can be re-positioned for whatever play scenario you decide upon.
And unlike the Alpha Pod, the front claws actually work!
And as you can see, there's also a port in the tail into which the pilot's weapon can be slotted, thus leaving both hands - or rather, claws - free to pilot the Ion Scorpion.
Color-wise, it's a real winner. The combination of neon green and black works well and where there is paint applied (such as on the claws) it's pretty neatly done.
Like the other Cosmic Chaos sets, the Ion Crab comes with a pilot. And it's yet another species of alien!
Again, the alien has a very bizarre design, matched only by his weird color-scheme!
The figure has the usual Imaginext articulation set-up: swivel head, swivel wrists, double-joint shoulders and swivel hip (with both legs moving together.)
There's a definite feel of the scorpion/insect about his design, with his mandibles and pincer-like claws. Interestingly he appears to only have one eye, which seems to be a running theme with a few aliens in the Cosmic Chaos range.
I really dig the flared pieces on his arms and legs, as they give the figure a very different and quite unique silhouette. There's also some great up-close detail, such as the little nodules on his ankles.
The alien comes with two accessories - his blaster rifle and his torso harness.
The blaster is a pretty weird-looking weapon, again continuing the pincer/claw motif and looking every bit the 1950s ''ray gun.'' I dig that.
The torso piece is the real star of the figure's design. There's a mass of intricate detail going on here and it reminds me of something you'd find in the Masters of the Universe range. I also like the twin shoulder blasters, which is a nice visual echo of the scorpion tail.
It's also compatible with a few other toys of varying scales and sizes and, with a new paint app, would fit in perfectly well with your other, more muted toys.
And speaking of paint apps, on the whole my alien's paintwork is solid, although his eye app is a little loose.
Every time I come to Review an Imaginext toy, I'm impressed. There's a lot of good in this line and it hits a lot of the things I look for in a range of toys, from the highly competitive pricing and great value for money to the innovative play features, fun designs and - in the case of these toys - a big old serving of retro goodness.
The Ion Scorpion does not disappoint.
It looks like a toy taken from the 80s and brought into a modern collection. Scale differences aside, this is pure Masters of the Universe or Micronauts awesomeness. If you like vintage toys, you'll find yourself loving this, as it has the look and feel of the kind of stuff we used to play with as children.
If the retro vibe doesn't do it for you, it's still a fun toy. It may look weird, but that's kind of the point. The designers have done a superb job capturing the feel of a scorpion-inspired alien craft (or biomechanical creature) and the design translates perfectly from paper to plastic. It's also incredibly durable and built to be played with, yet also complex, captivating and a great-looking display toy.
Then there's the fact that it's just $8. You can't even buy a decent action figure for that price, yet here you get a great-looking figure, complete with neat accessories AND a vehicle for him to drive around. And no, I'm not just saying ''it's cheap, so it's good.'' This is one of those rare toys that manages to be affordable and awesome without compromising its quality.
If you're not a collector of Imaginext toys or you've been tempted but have yet to pull the trigger, this is a perfect entry point for the Cosmic Chaos line and illustrates perfectly just how great these toys are. They're fun, packed with retro charm and cool play features, built to last, look great and are super-affordable. Get in on the action now. You can thank me later.
A super retro-style vehicle and figure playset fans of alien toys, Micronauts and Masters of the Universe toys will totally dig.