Category Archives: thyreophoran

Euoplocephalus (Jurassic Hunters by Geoworld)

Review and photos by Takama, edited by Suspsy

Up today is the first ankylosaur that Geoworld ever released for their line. Euoplocephalus was once the go-to ankylosaur for toy companies in the 90s’ due to the fact that it was a better known species then its family’s namesake. However, over the years, it seems to have been phased out in favour of Ankylosaurus, even if the toy still ends up looking like a Euoplocephalus anyway.

​The Jurassic Hunters toy made by Geoworld is definitely one of the worst versions of the species ever made, but when one looks at the toy, it is easy to see that they were trying to replicate a Euoplocephalus and not some other type of ankylosaur, as the spike patterns match up with the known fossils at the time of the toy’s release. However, anyone who’s well-versed in dinosaurs can tell where the problems lie in this model. The head is way too big and not even the correct shape. Club-tailed ankylosaurs like Euoplocephalus are known for their relatively short skulls, but the one on this toy is triangular in shape. Now, I do know that Euoplocephalus‘ skull does sort of have a triangular shape, but it’s a lot rounder than what was sculpted on this toy. Another error lies with the mouth. The mouth was sculpted open, but it lacks any indication that it is hinged like a real mouth would be. It’s as if the sculptor made the head and cut out a piece of clay from it to create the opening for the mouth, giving it an unnatural appearance. Another issue is that the hips are definitely not wide enough. For a model that gets it right, Simply take a look at the Battat Euoplocephalus, which is an almost perfect representation of the species that looks like it had a lot of care put into it. To be fair, like the Battat, the Geoworld version has only one cervical half ring, which is not accurate for the species (it should really have two).



In terms of detail, there’s not much to write about, as the majority of the toy is sculpted with irregular shapes that I assume are supposed to be scales. The caputegulae (head armour) does not match up with that of the real animal, but then, neither does a majority of the toy, so no surprises there. And the feet are crudely made with minimal detail sculpted to make the toes. And in terms of colour, all I have to say is that this model reminds me of a corncob. The base colour is yellow, which takes up the head, neck, and entirety of the bottom half of the figure, and the back is green. The claws are painted black, the mouth is painted dark red, and the little bits of teeth present in the mouth are white.

Now that the figure is out of the way, it’s time to look at the fact card that comes with it. First off, the image used on the card is also the same exact image used on the card for the Ankylosaurus which I plan on reviewing in the future. The only difference is that there are a couple of spikes jutting out of the back of the neck. It should be noted that the card has terrible grammar, and there are contradictions on both sides. For instance, on the image side, it says that Euoplocephalus‘ head was without armour, but on the flipside, it states that it was protected by bony plates. Obviously it’s easy to tell which side of the card is wrong, as anyone with a good knowledge of dinosaurs would know that the head of this animal was indeed armoured, but it’s still apparent that the people who crafted this card did not proofread anything before sending it out to be mass produced. The card states that there are forty complete specimens of this animal known to science, however, it should be noted that this card was made before the genus was split into different genera, with the text referencing the holotype specimen of Scolosaurus as being the most well preserved of Euoplocephalus. As with the Spinosaurus card, I cannot say where the image was taken from, so once again, if you know, please say so in the comments.


​And it is, the Geoworld Euoplocephalus. It is one of only four thyreophorans in the entire line, despite the fact that the line spans over 96 figures. Honestly, I can’t say I recommend this figure to anyone, as it is a poor product that was made without much thought put into it, and clearly not worthy of a dinosaur enthusiast’s collection. If you need a Euoplocephalus that badly, then seek out the Battat model, which is still available under the Terra brand.

Stegosaurus (Mini)(Skeleflex by Wild Planet)

Despite its immense fame and popularity, there are not very many complete specimens of Stegosaurus. Most of the skeletons you see in museums are actually composites of multiple animals. The most intact one is currently “Sophie,” a young adult that resides in the Natural History Museum in London, U.K. It is about 85% complete and looks magnificent. But as you’ll see, the subject of today’s review is quite the antithesis of “Sophie.”

The Skeleflex Mini Stegosaurus kit is made up of fourteen army green pieces. The main part of the skeleton is rubberized plastic; the rest are hard plastic. They all snap together via ball joints save for the peg-on thagomizer.

Once assembled, the Stegosaurus measures 16.5 cm long and stands 10 cm tall due to the large plates on its back. It holds together quite well and is articulated at the head, jaw, shoulders, hips, wrists, ankles, and tail. The sculpting is reasonably good and the plates in particular have an interesting bumpy texture to them.

But as you can clearly see from these photos, this Stegosaurus makes the T. rex I reviewed last time look like the very pinnacle of scientific accuracy by comparison. This is a hideous monster, plain and simple. Its head is oversized and equipped with sharp, triangular teeth. It has too few vertebrae. It has a single row of skinny, dagger-shaped plates. And most noticeably of all, it has ridiculously humongous feet. It’s anyone’s guess how a freak like this would be able to lift its feet high enough to walk.

Like all Skeleflex kits, the Stegosaurus‘ pieces can be swapped out to create any number of monstrous creatures. Although honestly, I find its default form plenty frightening already!

So that’s the Skeleflex Mini Stegosaurus for you. If you’re in the market for painstakingly detailed and accurate prehistoric renditions, then for goodness sakes, skip this kit and buy yourself a nice CollectA or Safari toy. But if you enjoy a little bit of weird fun now and then, look no further!

Wuerhosaurus (Age of the Dinosaurs by PNSO)

A wide variety of stegosaurs once inhabited North America, Europe, Africa, and Asia, but Wuerhosaurus is the only one currently known to have survived all the way into the Early Cretaceous period. Unfortunately, few fossils of this intriguing Chinese animal have been uncovered to date.

Xana the Wuerhosaurus measures just over 8 cm long. Like many of her fellow PNSO miniatures, she is sculpted in a relaxed walking pose, her head turned to the left and her tail held high and swinging to the right. Looks like she’s just out taking a peaceful morning stroll. Her main colour is mustard yellow with a faded underbelly, dark red spots, dark brown on her plates and spikes, and black and white eyes. Not as vibrant as the Kentrosaurus or the Tuojiangosaurus, but decent enough.

Xana’s skin has a wrinkly texture all over. Most of the wrinkles are small, but there are thicker ones lining her belly and the underside of her tail. The muscles in her neck, limbs, and tail are visible beneath the skin and her plates and spikes are covered in fine grooves. There certainly can be no question that these PNSO figures are among the best sculpted miniature dinosaurs.

The plates on Xana’s back are short and rectangular, which is unlike all other known stegosaurs. Her thagomizer is comprised of four stout spikes. Her head and neck look to be of reasonable proportion, and her feet have the correct number of toes for a stegosaur. All this is in keeping with most artistic depictions of Wuerhosaurus, as any Google image search will promptly demonstrate. However, the truth is that we really don’t have a good idea of what this animal looked like. Even the shape of the plates is in question, as it has been demonstrated that what was thought to be a rectangular plate was actually a broken one.

Until more fossils are found (and that could well be never), we can say that Xana is a fine rendition of what we think Wuerhosaurus might have looked like. I’m really enjoying this line so far. Keep up the good work, PNSO!