As I started writing this review I realized that I am an anomaly. During the 90’s when I was buying my first Carnegie dinosaurs, I never heard of or saw Battat dinosaurs. Throughout the mid 2000’s I wasn’t really collecting dinosaurs, other than grabbing the occasional interesting ones that I would find in a store. I have no attachment to the Battat line, and even now, I have never really felt the need to spend $60 plus on one. This makes the new Battat Terra series so much fun for me, since they are all new. As a Stegosuria fan, I knew I wanted to check out the Battat version of Dacentrurus Armartus. The only other Dacentrurus toy I have seen was a version by CollectA.
150 million years ago, walking around the woodlands of Western Europe, there was a 6-8 meter, two tons, of plant munching awesome named Dacentrurus. Even though the animal looks more like Kentrosaurus, it was bigger than its African cousin, more closely related to Miragia, and amazingly enough, Hesperosaurus from North America. I would also like to point out that it was the first Stegosaur to be described, and that was done by Richard Owen in 1875.
The Dacentrurus sculpt has the head and tail pointed in the same direction. The head is slightly cocked to one side and has small ear holes on the back of the skull and two prominent nostrils in the front. The neck is short and has small plates running down it. The triangular plates become bigger and longer along the back, and reach their tallest over the hips. Along the tail, the plates become thin spikes. The tail also is raised up in a way that it could be using its tail for display or defense. There are also two shoulder spikes, one on each side. The legs are all firmly planted on the ground with some definite bend on its front two legs. There are five splayed toes on the front feet and three on the back feet.
The colors are conservative, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing. The top half is dark green, and the bottom half is light green. The plates and spikes are colored in a light bluish green that really stands out. The edges of the plates and the tops of the spikes are black. The eye is yellow with a black middle. The toes and beak are brown. The skin texture is basically all skin folds and lines and it feels very fleshy. There is also a wattle of skin under the skull and has loose skin running down the neck. There are some texture lines on the plates as well.
So here are my nit- picks on this model. Though it may be speculative, the modern reconstructions and ideas that I have seen have the highest point of the animal over the wide, robust hips, or when its vertebrae reaches its zenith at the midpoint of its back, and then generally plateau’s till it passes the hips. Sometimes with a slight concave line. Instead on this model it is over the mid-section and has a upward and downward slope to its back, that looks like a small hill. I ma not saying that it is cut and dry fact, but the higher and straighter look is the prevailing assumption at this time.
The other thing that bothers me personally is the eyes. I am not a fan of the paint job, (that is a personal thing as it looks to similar to a chinasaur) and on my particular model, one eye is sunk inwards, and doesn’t look right. It has come to my attention that it might not be like this on each model, so you may want to take a closer look before purchasing. On the topic of the skull, the head also feels too big compared to the size of the rest of the body, but I could be wrong.
As for playability, it has spikes on its tail. What’s not to love? The spikes are bendy, so it shouldn’t hurt any kids playing with it. I am not sure what the breakage rate is with the spikes, but it seems to be strong enough to stand up to kid play. Also, with a high tail, it enhances a kid’s ability to use it during play, so that is another plus.
Overall, this is a nice, but average model. I would not say it the best stegosauridae out there, but it holds it own. The paint could have been applied a little better, but for the price, it was a steal. For kids, I think they would enjoy it, and for school projects, due to the lack of Dacentrurus out there, it could come in handy. I just have to mention that I enjoyed the box that it came in, very cool.
You can find the Battat Terra Series at Target and Dan’s Dinosaurs