Transformers Prime Bulkhead First Edition

I’ve done it. I bought my first Transformers toy.

My parents could not really afford to spend a lot on toys so I’ve only ever had the entry-level models.

Last week I got my hands on a modern-day Transformers toy, Bulkhead from the Transformers Prime animated series.

Here’s a photo of Bulkhead inside the box.

transformers prime bulkhead first edition in-box closeup

Before I go on further, I can just hear you asking questions so here are my reasons:

  1. When I was a boy I dreamed of buying any Transformers I wanted when I grew up and started earning a salary. After working for 12 years, I think it’s time to fulfill this childhood dream.
  2. In the 1980s, Transformers cost less than RM20. Nowadays the cheapest are above RM50. That’s a 250% price increase. So I’m buying now as a form of ‘investment’ for my sons (lame excuse)

Anyway I was at Toys R Us pretending to buy toys for my children but was deciding between Arcee, Bumblebee or Bulkhead. I chose Bulkhead because he transforms into a cool SUV (and he’s big).

Whenever anyone passed by I would say, “Hmm which one would my SON Daryl like?”

Then Poey Chin will get impatient and say, “Just choose what you like la.”

*shy*

The two older kids were spending the night at my parents house, so I secretly took out the box after Caleb went to sleep.

Poey Chin asked me how I was going to play with my Transformers toy. I denied and told her I wasn’t going to play with it.

I’m just going to… umm… practice on it so I could teach the boys next time.

Inside the box is the Bulkhead action figure and a “display stand” that’s actually just a cardboard box.

Full length photo of Bulkhead Transformers Prime action figure.

transformers prime bulkhead first edition full length robot mode

There’s also an instruction booklet.

transformers prime bulkhead first edition instructions cover

Ages 5+. Yup that’s me. Not for children under 3 years. Check. Level: 2 Intermediate. Bring on level 3!!

I spoke too soon because I unfolded the piece of paper and there were 25 steps to transform from robot to vehicle!

The Transformers toys I had when I was young only needed 4 or 5 steps.

Transforming back to robot mode was another 27 steps.

transformers prime bulkhead first edition instructions closeup

I started at step 1, being very gentle and careful because I didn’t want to break anything.

transformers prime bulkhead first edition

Half an hour later…

transformers prime bulkhead first edition vehicle mode

Okay I admit I’m a bit rusty. Kids can probably transform with their eyes closed in a matter of seconds.

The experience was a mix between eating a crab, solving a Rubik’s cube puzzle and assembling Ikea furniture.

It took me another half hour to transform back to a robot, but I enjoyed it.

Here’s how the box looks like in front.

transformers prime bulkhead first edition box front

And the back.

transformers prime bulkhead first edition box back

Maybe I can save some money to buy some more.

I visited a collectible toys store and saw some classic Transformers, and some were even made of metal. I believe the manufacturer is Takara or something, and they cost more than RM300. Sigh maybe some day.

For now, my Transformer goes into hiding to keep it safe from toddler hands.

Did I say my Transformers? I meant my sons’ Transformers.

 

The New iPad

new_ipad_1

What a surprise. I was expecting the new 3rd generation iPad to arrive in Malaysia in May, but Apple pulled a surprise by releasing it a few weeks early.

I promised to get an iPad for Poey Chin so it was time to keep my promise.

By the way I just noticed that my past 3 blog posts have been about buying stuff haha. Don’t get the impression that I’m rich! Just that my company gave us a nice bonus and we have a bit extra to pamper ourselves.

After finding out the news, we made our way over to Harvey Norman at Citta Mall to try our luck.

I was expecting a long queue but surprisingly not many people were there.

After about 10 minutes I walked out of the store as one excited boy man. You know that feeling… that temporary, fleeting pleasure that comes with buying material things. Maybe I’ll feel worse when the credit card bill arrives.

new_ipad_2

Oh yeah, Harvey Norman advertised that they offer 0% installment plan for credit cards, but didn’t mention they will add on 4% to the iPad price. So I paid the full amount.

 I bought 32GB Wifi version for RM1799.

new_ipad_3

I didn’t get any accessories like screen protectors and a case, but I think I’ll have to get those. Can’t stand all the fingerprints. And the iPad needs protection with so many kids around the house.

I plugged it into the USB port to charge, and turning it on for the first time was a pleasant surprise. If you turn it upside down it says ‘padi’ hehe.

new_ipad_4

After all the settings were completed, a brand new iPad ready for work and play.

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Here’s a zoomed in version of the previous photo, not sure if you can tell there’s any difference with the Retina display.

new_ipad_6

First impressions. It was a different experience for me. Initially it felt like a bigger version of a smartphone. I kept trying to hit the ‘Back’ and ‘Menu’ butons like Android devices.

I really like the larger screen space. I can type with all my fingers instead of just with my thumbs.

Apps on the iPad seem to offer more functionality and make better use of screen space.

I’ve never used the previous iPad versions so I can’t compare the display resolution and speed objectively.

The only thing I know is, my Samsung Galaxy S phone display seems to look really old now that I’ve used the new iPad.

I noticed my arms getting tired after holding the iPad for a while. You really need to rest it on something.

I’m also finding it hard to be restricted to sync everything via iTunes, and the iPad can’t play all our rmvb and avi files.

Browsing the App Store is a bit frustrating. The site can be so slow sometimes. And I know there’s a lot more apps but I don’t seem to know where to find them.

This iPad will be used by Poey Chin (and the kids), so I’ve stopped myself from installing a ton of games. So far she’s using it a lot for Facebook.

So now it’s like… okay… what do we do with this now?

Does anyone have any suggestions for nice Apps?

 

Hobby or Addiction?

angry birds

Recently I asked myself some questions. What is my hobby? What are my passions?

I really could not come out with an answer. So I asked my wife.

And she replied, “playing games.”

I was contemplating her statement in my mind, thinking if gaming actually qualifies as a hobby.

I mean, normal hobbies are reading, sports, fishing and collecting stuff right?

Then she added, “you’re addicted to games.”

“Addicted?”, I denied. “I’m not addicted.”

“Yes, you are.” she said.

Then I started to think when this addiction started (feel free to skip to the end if you have no interest in my life history).

Childhood

Like any young boy, I loved video games. I still remember we would go to those shops where you can pay RM1 to play for half an hour.

I can’t recall any specific games, but I can still remember Up-Up-Down-Down-Left-Right-Left-Right-A-B-A-B-Select-Start.

I wouldn’t say I was addicted, but I remember games could take up my interest and attention for a long time.

Teenager

I remember a few things related to video games. First of all, we were always obsessed over video game arcades. For some strange reason, our beloved government only allowed those above 18 years old to go into video game arcades.

This created a desperation to get my hands on Street Fighter 2. I convinced my parents to buy me a Super-NES so I “didn’t have to go to those game arcades with smoking gangsters”.

The second memory is the first time I installed a sound card on my computer. Some of you may remember the days when computers only played silly 8-bit music from the speakers, and you actually had to pay RM300 just for music and sound.

My friends and I messed around with our computers, trying to get games working (and sharing them on 1.2MB 5 1/2 inch diskettes).

I truly fell in love with computers when I was 14, and that decided my career.

There was a year when I stopped playing games , totally abstaining in 1997 when I was in Form 5.

College

College days were the days when the Internet was starting to become available.

My fondest memory was playing Diablo with a bunch of strangers on Battle.net. The game quickly became boring (due to cheaters and hackers), but I enjoyed the chat forum so much.

The Internet was a pretty boring place back then, so another platform took my attention: the Sony PlayStation.

Working

When I started working I resumed my gaming habits, purchasing a PlayStation 2.

Then Warcraft 3 and DotA came along.

I spent so much time playing games, often until 3 am in the morning.

Facebook

I remember when I first joined Facebook there wasn’t anything you could do except poke people.

Then they released their platform to developers and games started coming up. Companies started to develop better games and I was totally hooked.

Most of the games had an element of time, where you had to login every few hours to play the game or risk falling behind your competitors.

I would quit a game only to find another new game taking up my attention.

I even started a separate account just to play games!

It’s Not That Bad

I’ve just re-read everything I wrote and I think I should be checked in to some clinic immediately.

I know some of you feel like dragging your children to the screen to point to my blog and tell them, “see this uncle? See he play games all his life? See la, you play games some more la? See this addict? Don’t follow this uncle”

But I hope you take into consideration that I’m just sharing one of the things I did during all those years. It’s not like I played games non-stop for my entire life.

I did finish school, completed college, started a career and had a family at the same time.

I also want to point out that I learned a lot from games, because they force me to explore new worlds all the time.

I’ve Changed

If you ask me to stop totally, it would not be possible. Games are fun, and I admit I enjoy playing games.

I’ve come to a conclusion and realization that many games offer no real value. They suck you into their world and get you to do repetitive tasks like watering and harvesting crops.

So I’ve quit most of them.

I hardly login to Facebook any more. There are no video game consoles in my house. There are no computer games installed on my PC.

I only have a few games installed on my phone, though I admit I’ve been spending too much time on Defender in the past couple of weeks.

I’ve been playing Glitch, which is interesting because it’s funny, it’s a large world and you get to do a lot. But honestly I’m losing interest. Haven’t even logged in in the past week.

Conclusion

So back to my original question.

Is this my hobby? Definitely!

Is this an addiction? I think my wife is right.