Category Archives: Tyco

Stegosaurus (Smithsonian Institution by Tyco)

A Stegosaurus is definitely a classic,

as it hailed from the Jurassic.

It had large plates and spikes on it tail,

though it trudged as fast as a snail.

Meet the Smithsonian Stegosaurus toy from TYCO,

this is one toy you don’t want to let go.

The Dino Riders Stegosaurus had armor and could walk,

the Smithsonian version had none, just plates like a mohawk.

Finding room on a shelf might be a chore,

as its scale is 1:24.

At 6.5 in (16.5 cm) high and 10.8 in (27.4 cm) long,

it would look good standing next to King Kong.

The main color is green with red that has been brushed.

I guess this Stegosaur must be excited as it plates are blushed.

Oh those beaded eyes with their lifelike gleam,

wink at you as you start to dream.

Depictions of Dinosaurs from a childhood we adored

lead to scientific accuracy that we occasionally have ignored.

Its tail is dragging and its legs are splayed,

but its from the 80’s and that’s how it was made.

Yes this toy is quite archaic,

but for me Stegosaurus is Ptolemaic.

Its tiny little head had a beak that chops,

it looks as cute as an Avaceratops.

Long time gone from the shops it is,

so off to E-bay as that’s the biz.

To me its beautiful so I fully recommend,

as its worth the money you will spend.

Styracosaurus (Tyco)

Review and photos by Lanthanotus, edited by Suspsy

Months ago, there was a call for completing the Tyco page of the DTB and I replied that I’d add a review. I intended to have a look for the Pteranodon, a figure I just then had acquired, but couldn’t manage to write down a review in time and eventually this was done by Gwangi. Then there was a second call more recently, and this time, I managed to review the last Tyco figure I can, because it’s the only one left in my puny collection that hasn’t already been reviewed . . .

. . . although technically, perhaps it is. Six years ago, Griffin reviewed Tyco’s Monoclonius and stated that “a Styracosaurus was also made by Tyco that is exactly the same as this toy except for its spiky frill and different colour scheme.” That pretty much sums it up, and not much more would need to be said, but since you worked yourself through that lengthy introduction, you’ll get a proper review.

Styracosaurus is a Late Cretaceous centrosaurine that inhabited a seasonal flood plain environment. The first specimen was found in the famous Dinosaur Park Formation in Alberta, Canada, by Charles Sternberg and was scientifically named and described by Lawrence Lambe in 1913. There may be several species within the genus, but in the past, some that were counted towards Styracosaurus were already given their own genus. For this review, that does not matter anyway, as no species name is assigned to the toy.

Tyco’s Styracosaurus was released for the first wave of Dino-Riders back in 1988 and served as a beast of war for the heroic Valorians. The figure was also later released for the Smithsonian line with the only mould difference being the lack of lateral square gaps for attaching a harness. The toy is made of a light olive-green plastic that’s very rigid and breaks rather than bends, as can be seen in the left horn of that little fellow. Unlike most of its Tyco brethren, the Styracosaurus makes relatively minor use of its base colour. The figure is almost completely coloured in maroon-red and yellowish white, with just two stripes along its spine. The outsides of the legs reveal the odd green colour the figure is made from, but one can hardly recognize that pattern.

As noted earlier, the Styracosaurus shares its whole postcranial body with the Monoclonius. It stands on four short, sturdy, and straight legs with four toes on the hind legs and five on the front ones. The tail is short and slightly elevated off the ground. It provides the action feature of this figure where moving the tail from side to side results into the head bashing from one side to the other, opposite to the tail. The head of the Styracosaurus is nicely sculpted and fairly detailed in the front. The frill’s horns are too straight and placed in weird angles, and there’s one less pair of horns than the real deal. With the exception of this inaccuracy, the whole body morphology is not exactly false but far outdated. Back in the late 80s’, however, this ceratopsian was quite a fair reconstruction and the beady eyes so typical for Tyco’s dinosaurs add a lot of charm and liveliness.

This Styracosaurus should appeal to many people besides Dino-Riders collectors. It is indeed a very nice toy with a neat and robust play feature. Having been discontinued for decades, the obvious way to obtain this model is through eBay. Without any armour or weapons, it can frequently be found for just a few bucks.

Megachoerus AKA Archaeotherium (Tyco)

Review and photos by Archinto, edited by Suspsy

Here we will be taking a look at a classic rendition of the prehistoric mammal Archaeotherium, as perceived by the Tyco company in 1990 for their awesome Dino-Riders toy line. This particular figure was released for the Ice Age sub-theme (under the subgenus Megachoerus), which also featured a motorized woolly mammoth as well as an articulated Smilodon and Megatherium. Unlike those three, this particular figure was not reproduced for the later Smithsonian line, sadly. These critters all had special Arctic battle armour and each came with a unique articulated Cro-Magnon or Neanderthal figure. Tyco called their Archaeotherium a “Killer Wart Hog,” most likely for marketing purposes to make it sound more tough. And believe me, this beast looks as tough as its nickname! Let’s take a closer look.

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This is a truly lovely figure. It is articulated at all four legs and the lower jaw and tail move as well. By rolling your thumb on the base of the jaw joint, you can make it snap ferociously! The figure sports a pair of the classic acrylic eyes that Tyco is well known for. They truly give a more lifelike effect to the Archaeotherium, and add to the already excellent detail that the figure possesses. The sculptors took their time on this figure, and it shows beyond a shadow of a doubt.

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Here you can see the detail that they put into the creature’s face, exhibiting not only skin wrinkles on the lips and snout, but also how the skin blends into the hair seamlessly. The mouth is very detailed, sporting a battery of gnarly teeth and a tongue as well. The bony ridges on the bottom of the jaw, as well as the cheek bones, are very prominent on the figure. They’ve even detailed out the skin wrinkles inside the mouth.

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The teeth are painted a soft white that’s not bright and glaring like some tooth jobs done on many older dinosaur figures. The face features a reddish colour that blends into the ears and cheeks, then subtly blends into the brown on the rest of the head, flowing into the mane. From here, the darker colours lighten up and blend into tan and a darker speckled pattern in the animal’s fur. The speckling appears on the shoulders and rump of the animal. The dark brown shades in the mane are also painted on his feet and tail tip. A very even balanced colour scheme that looks fairly believable.

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The sculpting of the body hair is very well done. While it leans more to the chunkier side of hair sculpting, it all flows together wonderfully, especially on the legs and back. The leg musculature is slightly visible, and the joints are all correct and presented as they should be. The hair blends wonderfully to the hooves. The mane on the creature has a very interesting shape to it, and looks to flow as if a breeze is moving through it. Another nice feature is the shape of the tail, which when posed upward, looks a lot like how a modern wild pig’s tail goes up when it runs.

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As far as accuracy goes, this figure is fairly close, although it does possess some slightly exaggerated features. I would still highly recommend it to any collector who is looking for an exciting Archaeotherium figure for their collection. Even though it has been around since 1990, it still stands as one of the coolest-looking entelodont toys out there. They can be difficult to find, and when they do show up, they aren’t always cheap. Still, there are deals to be had! I find this figure to be incredibly nostalgic, and a joy to handle and play with.

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