What were these transforming robot toys from the 1980s called?
July 25, 2021 10:07 AM   Subscribe

There was a line of plastic toys in the mid to late '80s that could be found in cheaper US department stores. They were transforming robot toys that became simple 3D geometric shapes when transformed: an extruded rectangle, an extruded triangle, an irregular eight-sided thing shaped vaguely like a sarcophagus, a cube, a few others. All in solid red, gray, black, etc. They were around 6-12 cm in length and the robot instances were not terribly human looking. They had many little hinged hatches made of flat plastic hiding body parts and weapons.

I have no idea if there was some associated media. If so, I never saw it. It's doesn't seem to be obviously related to Transformers, Go Bots, Voltron, Gundam, Rock Lords, NEO shifters, Micro Change, Robo Machines. Rock Lords were definitely on the same set of shelves at the store at the same time. But none of the examples I've found have the flat or ridged sides I remember. But, it's possible my memory is faulty.

This seems like it should be easy to find online, but has been surprisingly hard to sift through the more popular things that use the same keywords. Any clues?
posted by eotvos to Grab Bag (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I remember MASK being the cheap version of transformers - some toys here but maybe not exactly as you describe?
posted by sedimentary_deer at 10:13 AM on July 25, 2021 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Sounds like the Mysterians toys, which transformed into fairly simple shapes.
posted by jedicus at 10:26 AM on July 25, 2021 [4 favorites]

Best answer: Mysterians seem to fit the description pretty well.
posted by mrgoldenbrown at 10:28 AM on July 25, 2021 [2 favorites]

Was It Shrine Warriors? Video review. This page lists the release as 2011, though.
posted by rodlymight at 10:37 AM on July 25, 2021 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Definitely mysterious. That was fast! Thanks.
posted by eotvos at 11:14 AM on July 25, 2021 [2 favorites]

Oh wow, I think I had one of these, too--"Air Commander," I think?
posted by synecdoche at 2:30 PM on July 25, 2021

Response by poster: (My comment above should of course have said, "Mysterians." Phone keyboards are challenging.)
posted by eotvos at 6:48 PM on July 25, 2021

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