First year of included the Founder Microman, Micro
Kit Machines and Conning Tower.
Second year saw more Microman and several new sub
series such as the Acroyears, Titans and Victory series.
line finally came into its own during the third year with new figures
and the classic Microman Transfer Fortress.
A watershed year for Microman series, this year
saw some of the best toys for the line.
tried new design and direction for the series with the released of
Hoodman and Arden.
Takara "rescue" attempt for the line
with the Rescue Team Microman. This year also saw updated of the old
favorite like the New Tower Base.
& Blizzard Man
The last year of the original series saw the shift
in the line to more robot like look and larger figures.
Takara reset the line and relaunch the series
under the New Microman banner.
Micro Robot series became the main focus of the
new line. Takara also tried to cash in on the "pla-mo"
popularity with Real Type and Micro Borg.
The "transformation" for Microman series
began with the Micro Change series.
continued with the successful Micro Change series but the
changing of the guard was inevitable.
third year of New Microman, Takara introduced new type of Microman toys called Micro
Change. These were ordinary objects that could "transform"
into robots to fight along side Microman. Takara also released the last
of the New Microman - 011 Saram (a repaint Command2 M16X) in several
variety of colors. The main focus of this year series was the new
sub-series of Microman called Micro Change. While Takara still kept some
interaction with the action-figure side it became clear by 1983 that the
focus of the line had shifted from the old Microman action-figures to a
Micro Robot action-figures.
M011 Saram (Blue/Black)
M011 Saram (Black/Orange)
Saram (Dark Blue/White)
Microman - Bio-Suits
Mineral Searcher Type
Heat Resistance Type
Deep Sea Type
Dust-proof Filter Type
MC01 MicroCassette Robo
MC04 Mini CAR Robo
01 Porsche 944 (red,yellow,blue)
02 XG1500 (red,yellow,blue)
03 VW Bug (red,yellow,blue)
04 4WD Truck
06 Trans Am
07 Semi Truck
Camera Robo - MICROX
MC06 Watch Robo
Gun Robo - M1910
Cassette Robo - Cassette Man
Gun Robo - S&W 44
Gun Robo - Walther P38
P38 Black Type
P38 Gray Type
Gun Robo - P38 U.N.C.L.E
MC08 Cassette Machine - Battle Bike
with M011 Saram (red/white)
MC09 Cassette Machine
- Jet Heli
with M011 Saram (black/white)
Change were living robots build by Microman to fight the Acroyears.
Micro Change disguised themselves as ordinary household items that can
transform into Micro-robots when danger arise.
1983, there was many other changes that were going on in the toys
industry with the popularity of show like Gundam and the realistic
robots depictions, older kids in Japan began to view transforming toys
as childish. The transformation robot toys like Bandai popular Sentai Team
(Power Ranger) and Takara Diaclone and New Microman began to
suffer greatly in popularity. However when a show called Macross came on
the scene and able to combine the two concept of realistic looking
objects with that of the giant robots with the legendary design - the
Macross Valkyrie fighter. Takara take this concept of realistic object
that transform into robots and applied the idea to both New Microman and
Diaclone series. On the New Microman side, the line got new sub-series
called Micro Change and Diaclone got a new sub-line called Car Robot. Little did Takara know
in 1983, that they had struck something
big that would forever change not only Microman future but the future of
both Japanese and American robot toys. The Micro Change series proved to
be quite popular but ironically their popularity would soon bring about
the end of Microman line.
- Microman Synergy and the rise of The Transformers. (by Paul L.
and Bryan W.)
the beginning, it was obvious that there was some kind of
connection between the, then, Takara new Diaclone line and the
relaunch 1981 Microman series. The recent research by my good
friend Bryan uncovered these hidden synergy of the two line that
ultimately became the Transformers. It all began in the late
1970's when Takara hold of sci-fi market was slipping.
Microman popularity peaked in 1977 and had since then been on
steady declined since. By 1980, Takara decided on new
marketing strategy to take on the die-cast robot toys market
dominated by the like of Popy. Takara planed was essentially to
split their sci-fi series into two "scale" of toy
lines. The action-figures line was left to the newly revamped
Microman series called the "New Microman". The new
Microman pretty much took the concept started with the 1979-1980
series and expanded it further. The new line now focus on
Microman size transforming robots and armored-suit that
interact with the Microman scale figures. (Microman still
retained their 1:1 scale). While Microman line tackled the
action-figures market, the new line called Diaclone was to take
on the "giant robot" sector. Diaclone too began
as a concept expanded from the Microman toys. By 1980,
Takara already attempted to enter the giant robot market by
introducing toy like Death King but this was not entirely
successful due mainly to the fact that Microman at its core was
still an action-figure line. So instead of introducing giant
robot into Microman line, Takara stared with a new series that
centered around giant robots. Diaclone shared much of the basis
of late Microman design but the series was done on 1/60 scale
with the "action-figure" only about an inch
tall. The focus of this line was of course on the giant
bases and vehicles that could transform into robot for these
miniature figure. (The figure had chrome head and magnetic feet
and look much like a micro-scale Punch Microman). Diaclone was
pretty much a Micropolis-realized something that Takara had long
wanted to do for Microman but could not due to size. The robot
and based literally formed a sci-fi world for these Diaclone
figures. The figures in Diaclone became the
"accessory" instead of the main focus.
early 1980's, both the toys and anime world were fast changing
with the introducing of realistic robots with shows like Gundam
and later Macross taking over the super-robot series. Takara designers
seized on this "real" concept and spin it into their
sci-fi lines. This was something that Takara seem to always
excel at, taking the popular concept and adapted them to their
line. Before 1983, most of the Diaclone and Microman toys
featured futuristic designs, but that was all changed with the
introduction of two new series - "Car Robot" for the
Diaclone and "Micro Change" for the Microman.
The "Car Robot" featured realistic looking cars that
could transformed into robots for the Diaclone pilot while the
"Micro Change" (also known as Chameleon Good) featured
realistic object that transformed into robots and vehicles that
interacted with the Microman figures. These two new line were
dubbed the "Real & Robot" line - a combination of
"real" world object with the fictional
"robot". The "Real & Robot" would
flourished for couple of years until Hasbro (a US toy company)
took these two "Real & Robot" lines and combined
them together and gave them a whole new story called "The
Transformers" for the US market. The new series
proved immensely successful and Takara decided to imported the
idea back to Japan. It was quite ironic that Hasbro
accomplished what Takara had been trying to do since the day of
the Victory Project - a unify single line for all of their main
sci-fi toys. To be fair, Hasbro did have one big advantage over
Takara, it was able to start from scratch with new story
something Takara could not do with their already establish
brand. This new "victory" for Takara however did
not come without a cost. With the successful fusion of the
two lines under "The Transformers" banner, it was no
longer necessary for Takara to keep neither the Microman nor the
Diaclone line going. By 1985, both line were canceled and
replaced with the new single sci-fi line called "Fight
Super Robot Life-form Transformers".