Today we are taking a look at the next Transformers product from Robosen – Performance G1 Bumblebee (#ad). He snuck out earlier in the year via clips from a corporate event, but he’s going live to the rest of the world today. Not just for pre-order either, he’s going live and will start shipping right away!
While Flagship and Elite Optimus Prime both have a transforming aspect to them, Bumblebee here does not. The focus is on action poses, voice and music. That voice being G1 voice actor Dan Gilvezan (
or a very good copy confirmed, it’s him) and the music being official G1 tunes, most being available on the recent vinyl record release. The combination of a very classic cartoon look, those sounds, and the fact you can control it all via an app kicks nostalgia into high gear.
Robosen was kind enough to send through a copy for us to check out a bit early, so read on for some quick thoughts, some pics of it in hand, and a simple video showing off some of what he can do!
Robosen Performance G1 Bumblebee First Impressions
This is my first extended hands-on with a Robosen product. I’ve briefly played around with Flagship Optimus via friends and have seen it at shows, but I was able to dig in with Bumblebee here. As mentioned above, he does not transform. That was a key point of the Optimus Prime pieces that came before, but this simplifies things. The visuals are a bit cleaner than Optimus, putting off a VERY G1 cartoon style Bee. He’s also pretty big – coming in at 13.5 inches tall, a centerpiece in stand by mode for those who love them some Beezy. He doesn’t scale exactly with either Optimus Prime unit, but he will work better with the larger Flagship model.
The unit comes with a companion app and once downloaded, connects via bluetooth to the figure. All in all that entire process was very smooth, downloading and connecting was done in under 2 minutes for me. The app is very self explanatory, I was able to dig around menus and start playing almost immediately. There are pre-installed actions in the Action Download Center that allow you to click and go, he’ll do a pre-programmed movement with related sound clip. You can also download additional ones after app install, and I did, and they worked. I assume over time additional items will be added.
There is also a Mini-Theater mode, which has a longer pre-programmed action, accompanied by music, sound effects, and voices. Like you are watching a mini-movie. There are ones for just Bumblebee himself, and one for him AND Optimus together. At the time I did the review, I did not have Optimus available to me so I can’t speak on that yet. The Bumblebee one is pretty cool though so I’d bet the tag team version is also good.
A standard Remote Control interface is available, allowing for some quick default actions via buttons, a joystick for making him walk around, and even a video recorder allowing you to film him doing the stuff you are telling him to do, all in one fell swoop.
When not in simple click and go mode, Bumblebee is voice activated. So you can wake him up Alexa style by saying “Hello Bumblebee”. He’ll respond, and then is ready to accept additional voice commands. A list of available ones are in the app. So if you had him chilling on your desk, you could have a nice little conversation with him, where he’ll react, move, talk based on what you say.
The last major aspect of the app and his feature set is customization via the Create interface. You can program him to move each joint within a range (-40 – +40 etc), in a specific order, at a specific speed, play a specific sound effect/voice clip/music clip, then save the sequence. Allowing you to replay it in full later on. I only dug into this a little bit because it does require some focus, trial and error, learning. But in the end, it allows for a very cool experience, you can create your own versions of the pre-programmed stuff I mentioned above. I can’t wait to see what the community does, creating their own little theater mode mini-movies with him (and Optimus, I assume).
All in all this was a super fun experience. Dan Gilvezan’s (
or a very good copy confirmed, it’s him) voice is on point, straight out of the G1 cartoon, he’s still got it. The music is also fantastic, using the remastered G1 tracks from the vinyl release. They also have the real deal G1 blaster effects in there, so that triple threatt of audio combined with the look is just SUPER throwback goodness. If you have the room, room in your budget, and a strong G1 nostalgia itch, this guy is worthy of a pick up for sure.
Robosen’s Performance G1 Bumblebee is going live today at select retailers, including Robosen.com (#ad). He’s retailing for US $399.99 and will start shipping NOW!
You can check out our pictures below. I normally don’t do videos for my reviews, but a lot of what this guy is all about is the way he moves and talks. So check out a simple video showing some key features! The only time I talk is when I’m talking to Bumblebee. 🙂
Official Product Info from Robosen
Robosen Bumblebee G1 Performance
Prepare to be transported back to the golden age of Transformers with Robosen’s stunning G1 Bumblebee! This authentic reproduction boasts the symbolic antenna-shaped “horns” and the smooth, flowing lines of the iconic yellow Volkswagen Beetle that defined an era.
But that’s not all – with functioning eyes and footlights and an array of classic motions and original sounds, Bumblebee offers a fully immersive and truly authentic experience that will make you feel like you’re in an epic battle on Cybertron.
With a state-of-the-art adaptive gait algorithm, Bumblebee’s two adjustable walking speeds will instantly match your movements, ensuring a smooth, natural pace every time. Its built-in 6-axis gyroscope detects your current posture, allowing you to perform high-difficulty poses such as single-leg squats, side kicks, and bending over. Even if Bumblebee falls, it will automatically get up on its own.
• Product Dimensions – 163(Length?×100?Width? ×340?Height??mm?
• Control Mode – Voice & App control
• Product Weight – 1.2kg
• Peripheral Interface – Type-C
• Product Material – ABS, Aluminum Alloy, Zinc Alloy, Nylon Glass Fiber, Polycarbonate
• Battery Capacity – 1460mAh Lithium-ion Battery
• Servo Motors – 17 Servo Motors (Head*1+Shoulder blade*2+Shoulder*2+Foot*2+Hip*2+Lower arm*2+Knee*2+Thigh*2+Ankle*2)
• Power Adapter – Input: 100V-240V~50/60Hz 0.5A / Output: PD: 5V?3A/9V? 2.22A/12V ? 1.67A MAX: 20W
• Wireless Communication – BLE 5.0