Thursday, October 31, 2019

[YouTube] Masters of the Universe: The Evil Horde's Slime Pit

The Evil Horde was first introduced in the Masters of the Universe (MotU) toy line in 1985 but the antagonists never actually opposed He-Man in the original MotU animated show. Instead they ultimately became She-Ra's primary foe. While I didn't follow the She-Ra show closely, I had (and still have) the first set of Horde action figures as well as some of their accessories. Their leader is Hordak who was joined by Leech, Mantenna, Grizzlor, and robot soldiers called Horde Troopers. A couple non-traditional action figures include Modulok and Multi-Bot (this one released a bit later in 1986) that both consist of various body parts that can be put together in a variety of ways. I do own some of the Snake Men that are considered part of the Horde at times but I'm going to stick with the core group here. That being said, it's the Slime Pit accessory that's the real focus of this post.

Mattel's Slime Pit is a fairly basic toy: it's a gray L-shaped plastic base with a skull on top and a claw at the bottom to hold a figure in place. Users are meant to fill the skull with slime and pour it onto an action figure they place in the claw's grip. In the cartoon universe, the Horde's slime transforms people into monsters that obey Hordak's commands. It may not be a toy with a lot of features but it's certainly a memorable one; what kid doesn't love slime? Canisters of MotU slime were sold individually so even if you didn't have any interest in the cartoon/toys you could buy the slime to play with outside of the pit. I've still got a slime container but my only original slime is dried up. I'm not too sure if I could add water to turn it back into slime and don't want to try so I attempted to make new slime to demo the pit in the video.

Many toys get recolored and/or redesigned to be used in later toy lines and the Slime Pit is no exception. In 2002 Mattel based the Harry Potter Slime Chamber Playset on the Slime Pit. Mattel wasn't done sliming He-Man either as it created a new pit in 2003 for what was then the latest Masters of the Universe toy line. Called the Mutant Slime Pit, this one doesn't actually look similar to the original at all. Instead of dumping slime on an action figure, characters are dropped into a pit of slime. From what I can gather the slime looked different for those two play sets and the Harry Potter toy's slime was glow-in-the-dark. Mattel actually began selling slime in 1976 though it wasn't the first company to do so. If you're interested in toy slime check out this video from Toysplosion: Slime - The History of a Classic Toy.

In the individual character photos below I didn't include the lame weapons (that you can see in the group photo) most of the Horde figures come with. They're plastic crossbows that sort of mimic firing and the figures look better without them. Some of the Horde do have unique features, such as Leech being able to suction to objects, Mantenna's eyes can bulge out by using a switch on his back, and Grizzlor is, well, furry. I'm posting this on Halloween and Skeletor has the perfect face for the holiday so I chose to slime him. Hordak and Skeletor are both bad guys that sometimes work together though they wouldn't be called allies so it's not too much of stretch that Hordak would like to be in control of Skeletor (not to mention the slime canister has the bad guy Beast Man being slimed). At the very bottom of this post is the Escape From the Slime Pit! comic book that was included with the Slime Pit.

More Slime Pit


The Evil Horde

Horde Trooper

Hordak and Mantisaur
Mantisaur (has a broken leg so he is standing funny)

Mantenna (eyes out)


More Slime Canister

Escape From the Slime Pit! Comic Book

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Remco Mini Monsters

With Halloween tomorrow it's a good time to take a quick look at a few Remco action figures that are based on the Universal movie monsters. Remco produced both a 9" line and the 3 3/4" action figures known as the mini monsters. Although some sources say these released in 1980, Plaid Stallions has a catalog page that states they are new for '81 so I suspect the packaging has a 1980 copyright despite not hitting store shelves that year. The set includes Dracula, Frankenstein Monster, Wolfman, Phantom of the Opera, Mummy, and Creature From the Black Lagoon. In the photos I am missing Phantom of the Opera's cape and I don't own the Mummy. Also, some of the paint is little sloppy or scraped off, namely on Dracula's nose, but overall the detail on the faces of these figures is quite nice.

Initially the toys shipped without any special features but when the second version of the figures released they could now glow-in-the-dark. Most have small glow-in-the-dark sections, such as their face and/or hands, but the Creature From the Black Lagoon's whole body glows and Mummy might too. Aside from the figures, Remco made two accessories: one is a carrying case that acts as a play set and the other is the Monsterizer that has flashing lights and sound effects.

That glow-in-the-dark photo is fuzzy as I had a hard time with that one. For the individual characters I used a small flashlight and I think most of them look good. The figures themselves generate some nice silhouettes.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Ghouls 'n Ghosts 'n Goblins

That title surely indicates this is a Halloween post, doesn't it?! Well, neither of Capcom's Ghouls 'n Ghosts and Ghosts 'n Goblins are associated with Halloween but I chose to post them this week since the titles certainly fit the holiday themes. Ghosts 'n Goblins (1985) is the first in the series with Ghouls 'n Ghosts (1988) being the second. However, I had to swap the order in the post title to make it flow nicely, and I must say it's a great title. The games are side-scrolling platformers where players control a knight named Arthur who is on a quest to save a princess from the Demon Realm.

I've only played Ghouls 'n Ghosts myself which I once owned for the the Sega Genesis. It was a launch title and a good one, though also very challenging. One of the more amusing aspects is that Arthur can temporarily be turned into an old man and even a chicken! Unfortunately, it was one of the games I traded in to buy Lunar: The Silver Star (Sega CD) but if I still owned it I would have done a Let's Play video. Instead I've got a variety of magazine scans regarding both games, as well as Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts.

Ghosts 'n Goblins
Being an older title the coverage for this one was lacking as most of my magazines begin in the late '80s. Fortunately, GamePro and Game Informer both highlighted the Nintendo Entertainment System version in throwback columns.

GamePro - October 1990
Game Informer - Sept/Oct 1993

Ghouls 'n Ghosts
The scans for Ghouls 'n Ghosts include a Sega Master system review from Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM) and a Sega Genesis review from Video Games & Computer Entertainment (VG&CE). There are also strategies for the Sega Genesis version from EGM and Game Player's. EGM's was split between two issues and while the first one says continued in the next issue I am missing that one so I don't know if I'm missing a part. It may have been delayed since my second part does pick up correctly I think. Also, Blogger is being a pain when aligning images with captions so I'm going to skip using them on the EGM strategies (first two are from issue #4 and the other two are from issue #6).

EGM #18
VG&CE - January 1990

Game Player's - February 1990

Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts
Last up are reviews of the Ghouls 'n Ghosts sequel for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System from GamePro and VG&CE. GamePro calls it Ghouls 'n Ghosts but it is in fact Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts. 

GamePro - October 1991
VG&CE - January 1992