Review and Photographs by Dilopho, edited by Suspsy
Good day, DinoToyBlog readers! Today, I have a very old figure that you may remember fondly from your childhood- the old Tyco Triceratops!
Now, before I begin this review properly, I have to tell you one thing: There were two main versions of this figure, a motorized one and a non-motorized one. This one is not motorized. See, when Tyco had wrapped up their Dino-Riders line, they had many dinosaurs (and other animals) left over and didn’t want to just throw them away. Luckily, since they were widely considered the most accurate dinosaur figures of the time, the Smithsonian Institution took them off Tyco’s hands and started to sell them under their own museum line, sans the motorized parts.
Anyway, this Triceratops is pretty big. Nowhere near as big as the T. rex, but big enough to completely dwarf some of the other dinosaurs in the line. It is also very robust as a result–this figure is over 24 years old at the time of this review, has been under a lot of playtime tyranny, has been through multiple households of children, and all it has to show it is a slightly squeaky leg. The quality of this figure is pretty incredible. “Survival of the fittest?” No! “Survival of the biggest”!
The head on this figure is stunning. Two beautiful glass eyes, which follow you around the room, dominate the face in terms of attractiveness. You almost–almost–don’t notice how weirdly small the beak and horns are.
The horns are also curved to the side and forward, like a bull. But this is because you were supposed to fit an armoured Brain Box onto the head in the Dino-Riders incarnation of this figure. The frill is also missing the epoccipitals, those spiky bits. It does have two minuscule ones on the cheek, though. I appreciate the level of detail on this figure. Just look at the crocodile-like scales on the forehead and the legs. The feet look strange though. They’re not ceratopsian and they’re also not elephantine. They are completely incomparable to any animal I can think of!
The colour of this figure is a lovely jungle-green, and can be compared nicely to the 1988 Carnegie Triceratops, as seen in the photo! With a dark back and a lighter belly, it’s almost as if it has absorbed all the head onto its back and gotten a dark tan, while the belly remained pale due to being out of the light.
Talking about the belly, if some attacking raptors manage to topple it over, we can see some hilariously tiny text telling you some info about where the figure was made. There’s also a lot of strange long scales, like a snake’s belly. There’s also some quite noticeable screw holes. That might detract points (if we were even giving out points) but I think that the underside of a Triceratops is rarely seen in play or display, so it’s quite alright with me. They certainly hid them better than a different figure did. On the other side, literally, it has some big scutes on the back like the tail of an alligator, and one of them is bigger than the others for reasons I do not know. It’s easy for kids to grab on to. Did I mention this figure is much lighter than the Dino-Riders line version, due to it having its guts scooped out? Eww. That sounds gross.
The “action feature” of this figure is that the head swings back and forth as you move the figure. It’s not a very complex feature–all they did was stick a pole through the head so it wobbles around. But it’s great! It’s up to you why your Triceratops is shaking its head, though–is it threatening someone? Is it just being adorable? Is it declining an offer? Either way, this figure has lots of good things going for it: It is big, it is hard to break, it looks striking, and it wiggles its head. What an all-around great figure!
While these go for a lot of money on the web, you may get lucky and find one cheap at a yard sale like I did.