Category Archives: World of History

Dimetrodon (The First Giants by Schleich)

Review and photos by Takama, edited by Suspsy

Over the years, Schleich made many different creatures for their prehistoric line, but not once had they ever made something hailing from the Paleozoic era, not even a Dimetrodon. However, in 2016, they rectified this by not only releasing a Dimetrodon, but also a Dunkleosteus as well, making them the first Paleozoic models for the company. When the Dimetrodon was first revealed, a lot of scrutiny was given to it because it seemed like it was ripping off the figure from Papo. First off, I do not own the Papo version, but I have seen enough photos of it to make me think that the Schleich version is different enough to avoid being called a ripoff. From what I saw in the photos, the Papo model is sculpted in a standing position, but the Schleich model is taking a big stride forwards. I think the one thing that makes people compare the two is the fact that the heads are in the same position, looking up while turned to the side.

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The Schleich Dimetrodon is the cheapest of the five large World of History models released this year, and costs less than the Papo version, which I think is close to the same size. The Schleich version is immensely detailed with tiny scales sculpted all over the body, making it look a lot more realistic than most of the other models in the entire line.

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Of course, if you’re up to date with the times, you would know that a scaly Dimetrodon might be as outdated as a scaly Velociraptor, because studies done on the skin impressions of Estemmenosuchus have shown that synapsids like Dimetrodon may have been covered in bare skin similar to that of an elephant, a rhino, or even a naked mole rat. Another possible inaccuracy with this model would be the posture. For the longest time. Dimetrodon was thought to have walked around like a large lizard with its legs sprawled out to the side. But recent evidence has shown that it was more likely to have been a high walker with its legs held straight beneath it.

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As for the positives on this figure, it is clear that they did do some research. The skull is unmistakably that of a Dimetrodon, and it has the right dentation in the teeth. The jaw is articulated and the larger teeth fit into the tooth notch perfectly. Another thing they seemed to get right with this figure is the number of toes on the feet. Each foot has five toes, unlike the Papo version which has only four toes on its hind feet. If there’s two things I have to question about this figure, it would be the fact that the tail might be too short and the feet could be oversized. Honestly, I’m not much of a synapsid expert to clearly state these as downright flaws, so if you agree or disagree with these two issues, please say so in the comments.

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The colours on this Dimetrodon are perhaps the most fiery ones ever given to a Schleich figure. Most of the figure is a mixture of oranges and browns with red highlights. The teeth are dirty grey while the claws are bright white. The sail has a black pattern all over it that looks different on either side and the eyes are blue as opposed to the black ones you see on most of Schleich’s other prehistoric products.

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Overall, this is not a bad model, just a little outdated. Honestly, it’s about time Schleich made a Dimetrodon, and for what it is, it is pretty darn good. If you want one, you can easily find it wherever Schleich products are sold (I got mine at a Farm and Home Store in Keokuk, Iowa).

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Spinosaurus (2015)(World of History by Schleich)

Review and photos by Nathan ‘Takama’ Morris, edited by amargasaurus cazaui and Suspsy

Before I begin this review, I want to get something off my chest. In case it wasn’t already apparent, I like Schleich’s World Of History dinosaur figures. I think they are very distinctive from other brands, and I think each model has a certain charm to it. However, one of the things I dislike about this line is the fact that Schleich is unwilling to release different species and instead releases second versions of species they have already made. The first instance of this was in 2014 when Schleich released another T. rex and Velociraptor despite the fact that they already had those two animals in their collection. The T. rex did not bother me too much because I like it a lot better than the original version released in 2012, and I think it could make for a decent female for the line. Its color is a different tone from the original’s. You can read Alice’s(Raptoress) review of that figure here on the blog. But the Velociraptor released in 2014 was a missed opportunity. Instead of calling it Velociraptor, they could have gotten away with calling it a Deinonychus or Utahraptor. I know that these figures are made for kids, but the ones buying the models are usually the parents, who may not give a hoot about which model they’re getting. They may not even know the difference between the creatures, and may have simply grabbed the figure because it looks like another raptor. If the model was similar in color scheme to the original back in 2012 (or if that one was retired), I would not be ranting as much in this review. That being said, I’m sure you’re all here to read about the anatomical accuracy of a model, and not just some rant about a line of kids toys, so allow me to cut to the chase.

For 2015, Schleich released several new figures, most of which were for new lines other than the World Of History series. Two of them could be considered unnecessary additions to the WOH line because again, they are species that were released before, and Schleich did not choose to retire their forerunners. The model I am reviewing today is the new violet Spinosaurus, and in all honesty, it’s an improvement over the original knuckle-dragger released back in 2012. According to Schleich’s 2016 catalog, the original model is being retired now, as this one takes its place. This model is in a quadrupedal stance, but the back legs are way too long to be in keeping with the 2014 Spinosaurus discovery.

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When I first recieved this model from a parcel from overseas, my initial thought was “Wow!!!” This model is one of Schleich’s more lively replicas, and believe it or not, it had potential to be a really great model of the species, but thanks to recent discoveries, I’m afraid its potential has been quashed.

This figure is posed in a similar fashion to the Kentrosaurus, however, instead of trying to fend off a predator, I interpret it as leaning over a river bed just waiting to clench its jaws on a fishy supper…

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In terms of detail, this model is a vast improvement over its predecessor. The entire body is decked out with scales and the curvature of the sail makes it come to life with an image of motion. There are sets of quill-like structures running down the length of the neck, and additional spines are sculpted along the middle of the tail. One of the things that I forgot to mention in my previous Schleich WOH reviews is that most of the theropod models Schleich makes are usually sculpted in a waxy material giving them a rubbery feel rather than the solid PVC that they used back in the Replicasaurus days. For some reason, both of the WOH Spinosaurus models were sculpted in the traditional material, while all the other theropods were sculpted in the more rubbery type. I don’t mind any line of dinosaurs made in two different kinds of materials. It is the rubbery material that helps me distinguish the WOH line from all the other dinosaur toy lines out there.

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Back to the figure. It is time to point out the inaccuracies that we have come to expect from this brand. The most obvious inaccuracy I can detect is the size of the back legs. By now, we are all aware of Spinosaurus‘ big makeover, so what was once a so-called “badass” carnivore is reduced to a more interesting, short-legged creature (that was replicated nicely by CollectA). The sculptors at Schleich clearly did not get the memo in time before this model’s release. One could argue that they did get the memo, but they thought the shorter legs would make it a poor seller. One must keep in mind that the 2015 products were likely finalized earlier then that Internet-shattering paper, making this model’s posture a pure coincidence. The body is curved to the side with the front limbs touching the ground like its predecessor, however, instead of dragging its knuckles, its hands are planted firmly on the ground. In order to make it work, Schleich had to pronate one of the hands so the model could be in its quadruped stance. Unfortunately, the other hand is also pronated, but at least they gave the animal its signature fish hook-like claws.

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Other inaccuracies include a short tail and extra large teeth. The only good thing I can say about this figure is that they did give it a tooth notch in its upper jaw, unlike its predecessor. However, there are teeth sculpted on the bottom jaw that block the notch when the mouth is closed, thus making the notch’s purpose quite pointless if this were an actual living creature.

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The colors on this figure are not as light as the original WOH model and not as drab as the Replicasaurus model. Schleich lists this model in their catalog as Spinosaurus Violet, so obviously the main color is going to be violet. The sail is orange, along with the top of the head and the quills on the neck. The belly of the figure is colored in a dull greyish white with more orange mixed in, and the bottom length of the tail is colored in more orange. The eyes are black with orange slits for pupils. The teeth are your usual white, and the tongue is colored red.

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Overall, there’s not much else to say about this figure, other than it’s one of the resculpts in the line that actually improve upon the original despite being a children’s toy. I imagine that the playability would be limited due to its fixed posture. At least it’s better than the original knuckle-dragger in terms of accuracy and aesthetics, and I’m glad I did not buy the original before this figure was announced back in October of 2014. Hopefully, we won’t get more repeats from them for a while.


Anhanguera (World of History by Schleich)

Review and photos by Nathan `Takama`Morris, edited by amargasaurus cazaui and Suspsy

Anhanguera was a pterosaur that hails from the Santana Formation in Brazil. It is recognized by two crests that were found on its beak (one on the top, one on the bottom). The overall look of this pterosaur resembles that of its cousin Ornithocheirus. Several species have been proposed for this genus, however, many have turned out to represent different members in the ornithocheirid family, with the only valid species being A. blittersdorffi and A.santanae.

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The species that the new World of History model is based on is hard for me to say, as I’m no expert on pterosaurs. The figure looks fine, and it is a slight improvement over the Anhanguera models that Schleich has released before. The previous models were made for the Replicasaurus and Junior lines, and were recognized for their perching posture that was rarely seen on pterosaur toys at the time. What those models lacked was a covering of pycnofibres. The new model for the WoH collection rectifies this issue with great attention to detail on the back and bottom of the torso. However, they ditched the perching stance in favour of a flying pose, and this is where the problems begin.
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To make the model displayable, the middle of the wings have been curved downwards. Schleich was probably trying to make it seem like the animal is flapping its wings, but the result looks unnatural. The wings are also too short to be accurate. The main thing that makes this model an improvement over the WoH Quetzalcoatlus is that the wings are a lot stiffer, not quite as pliable, and less flimsy.

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Another thing that sets this model apart from Schleich’s previous renditions of the species is the articulated jaw. The jaw can be opened and closed, and when the jaws are shut, the conical teeth interlock just like on the real animal.

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As well, the patterns on this model’s wings are more believable than those on the Quetzalcoatlus. There is a white pattern on both sides of the wings, and it looks good with the overly cartoonish color scheme of the model. The top part of the torso is blue with ruffled pycnofibres that give an appearance of spines, and the bottom part of the torso is white with smoother pycnofibres that go up to the middle of the jaw. Other colors include yellow on the hands, feet, and beak, black on the crest, pink on the flesh around the eyes and tongue, and green on the eyes themselves.

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Before I conclude this review, there is one more thing I must mention regarding the patterns on the wings. If you take a look at my photos, you will notice that the patterns are different on each part of the wings. This is probably due to carelessness at the manufacturing level. To me, this is not a deal breaker, but if you like your models to have consistent paint themes, then it’s something to consider when purchasing this model.

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Overall, this is not a bad figure aside from some anatomical hiccups that we have come to expect from Schleich. 

Available from Amazon.com here.