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Is this thing still on?

Well, it's been a while.  Most of my posts of late have been to my flickr page and to the Facebook Micronauts/Microman (ミクロマン&マイクロノーツ) fans page for now while I decide how the new Rockettubes.Net will work out.  But it is still forthcoming.  :)  As I will be migrating to WordPress or another platform, I have opted not to renew the paid features of this LJ account, at least for now.   If the unpaid one is too broken I'll reinstate it, but just a heads up in case anyone is worried I'm abandoning things (which is an understandable concern given the state of some fansites of recent years and some of their owners sadly disappearing off the face of the net).  

Hopefully some new news to report soon.  I do have some projects going on in the background, albeit slowly for now.  In the meantime, please continue to check here, Flickr, Facebook, and the Micropolis Embassy for new Micro-goings-on.


I've not reported here but just about everywhere else I can, but a while back ago the Four Horsemen announced picking up the Outer-Space Men license and their plan to release it as a 3 3/4" line that is cross-compatible with Onell Design's Glyos System.  This in itself was really amazing news.

But then Matt showed THIS today...  :D

Also be sure to check out the interview with Matt Doughty on Poe Ghostal, it's a must read:




Microman designers Koujin Ohno and Hideaki Yoke openly honored by Hasbro for
their contributions to creating the Transformers! :D Hasbro seems to be less
interested in downplaying stuff regarding Microman/Micronauts ever since they
acquired the license, don't they?


From the press released posted at Tformers.com:


TRANSFORMERS Fans May Participate in Selecting One Additional Robot to Join Hall
of Fame's 2010 Class

After more than 25 years of "MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE" action, Hasbro, Inc.
(NYSE: HAS) is launching the TRANSFORMERS Hall of Fame that will honor those
influential in creating and building this iconic entertainment brand as well as

In 2010, Hasbro will induct four individuals into the TRANSFORMERS Hall of Fame
who helped shape the global entertainment brand that has spawned popular action
figures, comic book series, multiple animated series, video games and two
blockbuster live action movies. The inductees include:

Bob Budiansky: While working as an editor for Marvel Comics in 1983, Mr.
Budiansky named and wrote the personality profiles for most of the first 20 or
so TRANSFORMERS characters. He then became the editor of the very first
TRANSFORMERS mini-series, which led to his scripting most of the next 50 issues
of the monthly TRANSFORMERS comic book. As he continued working with the brand
on behalf of Hasbro, he named and wrote the packaging copy and personality
profiles of dozens more TRANSFORMERS, and developed story treatments as new
lines of TRANSFORMERS were introduced.

Peter Cullen: Mr. Cullen is a voice actor best known for providing the English
voice for the wise and heroic AUTOBOT leader OPTIMUS PRIME in the popular 1980s
cartoon series "The TRANSFORMERS" and in the 1986 animated film "The
TRANSFORMERS: The Movie". He reprised the role again in 2007 and 2009 in the
live action TRANSFORMERS movies, and will return for the third installment
slated for 2011. Additionally, he has provided the voice of five other
TRANSFORMERS robots during his career.

Yoke Hideaki: While working at TAKARA TOMY, Mr. Hideaki invented the Micro-Robot
segment within the MICRONAUTS toy line, which featured the engineering
innovation of transformation in action figures that were no more than 3 to 4
inches tall. TRANSFORMERS characters MEGATRON, SOUNDWAVE and RAVAGE can trace
their origins to Mr. Hideaki's efforts. He acted as liaison between TAKARA TOMY
and Hasbro during the early years of their business relationship.

Kojin Ohno: Mr. Ohno started his career at TAKARA TOMY, working on the design of
the Microman and Diaclone toy lines, which would later become one of the
inspirations for the TRANSFORMERS toy line. Mr. Ohno created SUNSTREAKER, which
is considered the first "car to robot transforming toy". He was also
instrumental in the introduction of Beast Wars TRANSFORMERS for the Japanese
market. He helped design toys for both live action TRANSFORMERS movies. He takes
great pride in being the person who designed the largest TRANSFORMERS toy from

Budiansky, Cullen, Hideaki and Ohno will all attend the 2010 TRANSFORMERS
convention (known as BotCon) in Orlando, FL and will be officially inducted into
the TRANSFORMERS Hall of Fame during the festivities on Saturday night, June 26,

Hasbro will also induct five iconic characters into the TRANSFORMERS Hall of
MEGATRON and STARSCREAM, will be in the first class of robots honored with
admission as chosen by Hasbro's TRANSFORMERS Hall of Fame internal panel of

In addition, TRANSFORMERS fans around the world may visit Transformers.com
starting today and cast their online vote to select a fifth robot to join the
inaugural class.

The ballot of finalists was created with input from several TRANSFORMERS
collector fan media sites, which conducted their own online polling to ensure
the ballot represented the robots that most resonate with fans. The ballot
votes daily from now until May 28. The winning robot will be revealed at the
Hall of Fame induction ceremony at BotCon on June 26, 2010.

First introduced in 1984 by Hasbro and Takara as a toy line, the TRANSFORMERS
brand has provided kids with hours of MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE fun with their
action figures that convert from robot to vehicles and back again. Legions of
boys around the world grew up creating fantastic adventures and battles set on
both the planet CYBERTRON and Earth that featured the "good-guy" AUTOBOTS and
the "bad-guy" DECEPTICONS. Since then, more than 7500 robots have been
introduced, with five receiving the distinction of being in the first
TRANSFORMERS Hall of Fame class.

I should note that Yoke started on with Microman around 1978-9 and Ohno came on in the early 80's near the end of the run. Both men were largely responsible for Microman's reboot in 1980 as "New Microman" that moved it into the transforming robot-oriented design style associated with what we now think of as the "Transformer look".

Yoke also invented one of my favorite Microman sets, the enormous "Secret Rescue Base" playset. The original main inventor-designer behind the classic Microman series was Ogawa Iwakichi back in 1974. :D

...or not.

It has been revealed that the Microman anime subs are from an older VHS subtitle that only was made of the first two episodes, and were ripped as-is by a group looking to make a buck for their efforts.

Ah well.

MIcroman anime fansubbed

The first episode has gone up and can be found on http://tokyotosho.info (search for Microman) and downloaded with a torrent client. Overall a reasonably good effort! Here's hoping they can keep it going...
Rockettubes.Net will be offline on and mostly off for the next several days. I am in the process of changing hosts (after the last one failed to meet my needs) to be followed with some significant changes and upgrades in the month(s) ahead. Hopefully the transition will be a smooth one (already have hit some bumps)! Please continue to watch this space for updates.

Update: Host transfer is complete now and all links that were broken this last week *should* work again.   If you have a broken link, please try replacing the "www" in the address with "archive" and this should fix it.  Also if you are looking for the old Rockettubes.Net pages, they are now all in the new archive.rockettubes.net subdomain.   The new site itself is not ready yet, but should be online sometime in the next few days or so and I will make some announcements at that time.   Stay tuned! 

Phobos Rising

Phobos Rising, originally uploaded by MicroBry.

A customized Phobos--can you guess the extra parts?

Baron Karza versus the Triceratops


(via Michael Jaecks' random find @ Facebook)


Just stumbled across this page:


It's pretty rare to find new talk about the 1999 Microman anime. Most of the Japanese sites and groups are gone these days, and the show was largely unseen by western anime and Microman toy fans, sadly. I hope to rewatch the series later this year and do an episode-by-episode review. Of course I have a lot of other projects on my plate (including getting Rockettubes.Net rebooted from scratch and of course the long delayed continuation of the 2005 Microman manga scanlation), so it might be a good bit later. But it should be fun! Perhaps someday a fansub will come about.

As an anime fan, I found the series okay as a kids' hero show--nothing really new or ground breaking, but with some cool characters and a lot of references to the classic 1970's Microman manga storyline. I think Sunrise would have handled the series better if, as originally supposedly planned, they moved on to it after GaoGaiGar, but Studio Pierrot rose to the challenge of making a series about 8cm tall heroes fun and interesting. As a Showa-era Microman fan, on the other hand, the show was a literal dream come true, as was the 1999 MagnePowers toyline, which held its own quite well against the original classic 10 year run of Microman toys.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2biICUEzWj8 (thanks to Alexis for pointing this out!)

Yeah, still lagging on getting things updated here. Rockettubes.Net's formerly reliable enough webhost has, well, gone down the tubes, so I need to move to a different host before the new RocketTubes 4.0 plans get underway. Soon now, hopefully.

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