Category Archives: Jurassic Hunters

Doedicurus (Jurassic Hunters by Geoworld)

Review and photos by Takama, edited by Suspsy

When it comes to glyptodonts, only two species have ever been replicated in toy form. The first one is the standard Glyptodon, which has been made by many companies over the years (yet many have yet to be reviewed). And then there’s Doedicurus, the one glyptodont that most laypeople can tell is different from Glyptodon because of the spiky club on its tail that would make many ankylosaurs green with envy. Unlike Glyptodon, this animal has been made by fewer companies, with only Kaiyodo, Safari, and this one from Geoworld coming to mind.

The Geoworld model is not half bad for a model of this species. The carapace is covered with many little osteoderms just like in the fossils, but I can’t help but wonder if they are too big. The tail is sculpted correctly with the rings of bone covering it to look like the animal can extend or retract its tail (I’m not saying it could really do that, just that that’s how it looks to me). As for the club, it seems to match the fossils as well. The spikes on this model are somewhat sharp, so be careful should you give this to a kid who is prone to rough play.

The one thing I am not sure about accuracy-wise would be the head. I do not know much about mammals, and in case it was not obvious, I basically compared the model to images of the fossils themselves since they are well known. Reconstructing the face of a mammal seems to be a harder thing to do then reconstructing the face of an extinct dinosaur, so please forgive me for not knowing if this figure’s face is accurate or not. But just to help you decide, I will go ahead and describe it. The face is rounded just like it should be on a glyptodont. The head is also armoured, which is a correct thing to do, but the nostrils and ears are huge. This almost gives the animal a rodent-like appearance, when it’s supposed to be an armadillo.

The figure is painted in a mostly tan colour with the tiny osteoderms and head plate coloured in brown. The toe claws are painted brown as well and the eyes are painted red. In case you’re wondering, this 6″ figure is an entirely original creation from Geoworld, which I think is good, because we all know of the company’s misdeeds when it comes to the paleoart used in the fact cards that come with their models. On that note, the image on the card that comes with this model has not been ripped from any other source that I can think of. Instead, it shows a drawing of the animal that looks an awful lot like the model.


Overall, this looks like your typical Doedicurus and if you want one in your collection, I say you should pick one up if you see it at a store. Unfortunately, these mammal toys have become very hard to find outside of DeJankins, which has proven to be the best source of these models should you care to buy them. It’s a long road ahead to reviewing every Geoworld Jurassic Hunters model I have, so I’m glad to check this one off the list.

Utahraptor (Jurassic Hunters by Geoworld)

Review and photos by Takama, edited by Suspsy

Last time I did a review of a Geoworld product, I said that the company likes to put feathers only on species that are known to have feathers in the fossils. Well, unfortunately I should’ve done more research (and a little more glancing at my collection) because that was not the case. Today’s model is a feathered dinosaur by Geoworld, and it’s actually one of a few models that have sculpted plumage despite being currently absent in the fossils. The model in question is Utahraptor, and for once in the line, the colours look very believable. The model is sculpted with a feathery texture and is given a realistic spot-like pattern that remind me of the patterns found on big cats such as leopards. Unfortunately, I don’t think this color scheme is well-suited for anything that’s not a grassland, and we all know that grass was not very abundant in the Mesozoic.

image

Despite this, the patterns and texture are pleasing to look at. The only downside is that the model is made in a ridiculous pose. The torso is arched upwards at an angle and one of its hands is raised higher than the other. The mouth is also wide open (since kids think theropods look cooler with their mouths open), but on this model, it looks ridiculous. What it is intended to be doing is beyond me, but the way I interpret it is that the raptor is about put his hand over his heart while he sings a ballad or two for his sweetheart.

In terms of accuracy, this model is pretty decent. The arms lack primary feathers, but in my opinion, this is best for Geoworld because whenever they do try such feathers, they always get them wrong (case in point: the Velociraptor) and the way the feathers are sculpted on this figure makes the model look more convincing as a living creature (if only the pose were different). Yes, I know that it’s inaccurate without primaries, but in this instance, I’m willing to let it slide. The head is your generic dromaeosaur skull that looks reasonable for a species like Utahraptor. The feet are the right shape and the hands have the correct number of digits.

image

The colours on this model are the most strikingly realistic ones I have ever seen on any Geoworld figure. The main color is orange while the patterns are brown with black outlines. The feet are a bright blue which contrasts to the duller, more subtle colours on the rest of the body. The teeth are white (as usual), the claws are black (also as usual), and the tongue is pink.

Overall, I would say this is one of Geoworld’s more decent efforts were it not for the pose. If you can get over it (or find a diorama that requires a singing dromaeosaur), then go ahead and buy one from your preferred Geoworld retailer (mine just so happens to be Dejankins, who’s got the entire Jurassic Hunters line in stock for a fair price).

image

Embolotherium (Jurassic Hunters by Geoworld)

Review and photographs by Indohyus, edited by Suspsy

By now, we are all aware of the reputation of the Geoworld Jurassic hunters line: cheaply made figures, full of inaccuracies despite (false) claims of palaeontological approval and shameless plagiarism of palaeoartists. However, I wanted to investigate these figures personally, so I got a figure from each of the first three ‘expeditions’ and see what they were like. One was good, one was okay, and the other was a waste of money. We’re going to start with the better of the three. From the third expedition, Embolotherium.

image

From the late Eocene of Mongolia, Embolotherium is a member of the Brontoheriidae family of extinct even-toed ungulates, related to species like Megacerops. They are herbivores with a bony outgrowth on the nose, forming what looks like a battering ram, although they were too fragile for ramming. It is thought they may be sexually dimorphic based on these crests, but is yet to be proven. There are few brontothere figures available, usually Megacerops. Could this help buck the trend? Let’s see . . .

image

First, to discuss the fact card that comes with the figure. This is often the part that offends most for its heavy plagiarism. However, it would seem that they have learnt to do their own work for this figure, as it is just an airbrushed version rather than blatant plagiarism with no mention of the original artist. I will let you decide if there is some problems with the card, but it seems okay to me.

image

Now, onto the actual figure! It has been done in a 1:35 sale according to what is stamped on the underbelly, as it seems all figures are around the same size with various scales, which is a little confusing. In any case, the figure is 5.8” long from snout to tail and 3.1” tall from hump to hoof. The figure is an overall grey-beige colour, similar to large mammals today, with the exception of the yellow underbelly. This is used to highlight the company name and other details, but it is incredible distracting from the rest of the figure. The overall texture and skin is very similar to the Indian or Sumatran rhino, giving it a natural feel. While simple, it doesn’t seem to copy any work by other palaeoartists, only vaguely resembling the Embolotherium featured in the show Primeval. The pose is stoic, with only a languid tail swish and open mouth to provide action, making it look like it’s feeding. Dull, but okay.

image

Normally, accuracy in Geoworld figures is low to non-existent. The main fossil evidence for Embolotherium are from skull remnants, and it does seem they have got it right. The crest is correct and the skull is correctly flattened. It might be a bit wide, but not bad overall. The hump is likely based on related species, which do feature raised neural spines, though this seems overexaggerated. The rest of the figure is accurate to most brontotheres, with short tails and stocky legs. It is surprisingly accurate for a Geoworld figure.

image

Despite being in a line full of extinct versions of modern animals or ancient mammals that have been released over and over, Embolotherium sticks out as a great figure that is actually recommendable, a gem among the trash that is a lot of the Geoworld dinosaurs. If you see it for a good price, I do recommend it.

image