January 1985 - April 1985
|No. of issues||2|
|Main character(s)||see the comic series enclosed with the model kits|
|Written by||Andrew Helfer|
|Penciller(s)||Judith A. Hunt|
The Robotech Defenders are a line of scale model kits released by Revell during the early 1980s with an accompanying limited comic series published by DC Comics. Contrary to what their name seems to imply, the "'Robotech Defenders'" are not part of the Robotech Anime Universe adapted by Carl Macek and released by Harmony Gold USA, however they did adopt the same moniker and logo.
The "Robotech Defenders" were one of two "Robotech" lines released by Revell, the other being the "Robotech Changers". The "Robotech Changers" line initially consisted of three models based on the Valkyrie Variable fighter designs from Macross, and the NEBO model, based upon the Orguss of Super Dimension Century Orguss.
The "Robotech Defenders" model line was tied into a two-issue limited series of the same name, published by DC comics. It shares many common themes with other science fiction series of that time, including invading aliens, and giant mechanical war machines.
Seeking to capitalize on the Mecha craze of the early 1980s, Model Company Revell went to Japan to look for suitable mecha models prior to 1984. They eventually licensed a number of Takara's Fang of the Sun Dougram models for the "Defenders" line. These models were repackaged with the "Robotech" moniker, and released in North America and Europe.
The humanoid Mech models had an average size of 30 cm, the in-scale humans were about 2 cm. One of the features of the models (excepting the Human and Grelon miniatures) was that they were not static, but had fully movable joints and removable equipment. Because of the complexity, details and parts they can be challenging and require adult skill level even though they were sold with "ages 12 and up" on their packaging. Experienced modelers found them challenging, especially the Humans and Grelons.
In the North American market, the models met with some success, appealing to both fans of the Robotech and the players of the Battletech tabletop strategy game. In Europe, however, model sales were disappointing, possibly due to the non-existent background story included with the models, and the relatively high prices.
Listed below are the Revell Robotech Defenders Model Kits by number and the source of the model (as well as the corresponding BattleTech name, if known)
|Model #||Name||Scale||Anime Origin||Anime Name||BattleTech Name|
|1145||Exaxes||1/48||Super Dimension Century Orguss||RSG-21A-1 "Ishfon"|
|1146||Decimax||1/48||Super Dimension Century Orguss||MBG-24C "Nikick"|
|1148||Aqualo||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Soltic H404S "Mackerel"|
|1149||Ziyon||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Soltic HT-128 "Bigfoot"||BattleMaster|
|1150||Thoren||1/48*||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Soltic H8 "Roundfacer"||Griffin|
|1151||Zoltek||1/48||Fang of the Sun Dougram||"Dougram"||Shadow Hawk|
|1152||Condar||1/48*||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Soltic H-102 "Bushman"|
|1153||Talos||1/48||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Abitate T-10B "Blockhead"||Wolverine|
|1154||Gartan||1/48||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Hasty F4X "Ironfoot"||Thunderbolt|
|1161||Ice Rover||1/48 & 1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Eastland ARH-52 "Groundsearch" Air Cushion Vehicle|
|1162||Terrattacker||1/48||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Bromry JRS "Native Dancer" Combat Buggy|
|1184||Dromedin||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Abitate F44A "Crab Gunner"||Goliath|
|1187||Sand Stalker||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Abitate F44S "Desert Gunner"|
|1191||Armored Combat Team||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Soltic H8 "Roundfacer", Bromry ST-48D APC, HT-38D Truck, & OR-39D Willys Fighting Jeep|
|1192||Strike Force||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Hasty F4X "Iron Foot" & Culailles MP-2 "Duey" Attack Helicopter|
|1193||Assault Squad||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Abitate F35C "Blizzard Gunner & Bromry "ARMC Instead" Wheeled Armoured Vehicle|
|1194||Robot Recovery Unit||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Bromry "Eyevan" DT-2 Trailer Truck|
|1197||Airborne Attackers||1/72||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Soltic H-102 "Bushman" & Eastland WE-211 "Mavellic" Combat Armour Transport Helicopter|
|1199||Commando||1/48||Fang of the Sun Dougram||Abitate F44B "Tequila Gunner"|
|??||Excalibur Mk.VI||1/72||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||MBR-04-Mk.VI Destroid Tomahawk||
(The 1150 "Thoren" and 1152 "Condar" model kits are 1/48 scale though according to the box they should be 1/72.)
- Robotech Defender "Exaxes" (1145: 1/48 Scale) is the Orguss RSG-21A-1 "Ishfon" walker - not transformable.
- Robotech Defender "Decimax" (1146: 1/48 Scale) is the Orguss MBG-24C "Nikick" - not transformable.
- Robotech Defender "Aqualo" (1148: 1/72 Scale) is the Dougram H404S "Mackerel" Marine Combat Armor.
- Robotech Defender "Ziyon" (1149: 1/72 Scale) is the Dougram Soltic HT-128 "Bigfoot" Combat Armor-not transformable. (Battletech "Battlemaster")
- Robotech Defender "Thoren" (1150: 1/48 Scale) is the Dougram Soltic H8 "Roundfacer" Combatc Armor-not transformable. (Battletech "Griffon")
- Robotech Defender "Zoltek" (1151: 1/48 Scale) is the Dougram D7 "Dougram" Combat Armor-not transformable. (Battletech "Shadow Hawk")
- Robotech Defender "Condar" (1152: 1/48 Scale) is the Dougram Soltic H-102 "Bushman" Combat Armor-not transformable.
- Robotech Defender "Talos" (1153: 1/48 Scale) is the Dougram T-10B "Blockhead" Combat Armor-not transformable. (Battletech "Wolverine")
- Robotech Defender "Gartan" (1154: 1/48 Scale) is the Dougram Hasty F4X "Ironfoot" Combat Armor-not transformable. (Battletech "Thunderbolt")
- Robotech Defender "Ice Rover" (1161: 1/48 Scale) is the Dougram Eastland ARH-52 "Groundsearch", an air-cushioned hovercraft vehicle - not transformable.
- Robotech Defender "Terrattacker" (1162: 1/48 Scale) is the Dougram Bromry JRS "Native Dancer", a light 6-wheeled AFV/jeep - not transformable.
- Robotech Defender "Sand Stalker" (1187: 1/72 Scale) is the Dougram Abitate F44S "Desert Gunner" 6-legged Walker Tank-not transformable.
- Robotech Defender "Armored Combat Team" (1191: 1/72 Scale) is the Dougram Soltic H8 "Roundfacer" Combat Armor-not transformable, with infantry jeeps. (See Robotech Defender "Thoren")
- Robotech Defender "Strike Force" (1192: 1/72 Scale) is a Dougram Hasty F4X "Ironfoot" Combat Armor and a Culailles MP-2 "Dewey" attack helicopter-not transformable. (See Robotech Defender "Gartan")
- Robotech Defender "Assault Squad" (1193: 1/72 Scale) is a Dougram Abitate F35C "Blizzard Gunner" Walker Tank and an ARMC Instead AFV light attack vehicle. (Walker Tank used as Battletech "Scorpion")
- Robotech Defender "Robot Recovery Unit" (1194: 1/72 Scale) is a Dougram Bromry "Eyevan" DT-2 Trailer Truck.
- Robotech Defender "Airborne Attacker" (1197: 1/72 Scale) is a Dougram Soltic H-102 "Bushman" Combat Armor and an Eastland WE-211 "Mavellic" cargo-lifting helicopter-not transformable. (See Robotech Defender "Condar")
- Robotech Defender "Commando" (1199: 1/48 Scale) is the Dougram Abitate F44B "Tequila Gunner" 4-legged Walker Tank-not transformable.
Listed below are the Revell Robotech Changers Model Kits by number and the source of the model (as well as the corresponding BattleTech name, if known)
|Model #||Name||Scale||Anime Origin||Anime Name||Battletech Name|
|??||OrgussII||1/48||Super Dimension Century Orguss||"Orguss II"|
|1143||Attack Fortress SDFI||1/5000||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||SDF-1 "Storm Attacker Mode"|
|1144||Space Fortress SDFI||1/5000||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||SDF-1 "Cruiser Mode"|
|1400||Nebo||1/48||Super Dimension Century Orguss||"Orguss"|
|1401||Orbot||1/72||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||"VF-1D Valkyrie"|
|1402||Vexar||1/72||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||"VF-1S Valkyrie"||Wasp|
|1403||Axoid||1/72||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||"VF-1J Valkyrie"|
|1404||Factory||1/100||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||"VF-1J Armored Valkyrie" & MBR-04-Mk.VI Destroid Tomahawk||Crusader & Warhammer|
|1405||Trigon||1/48||Super Dimension Century Orguss||"Drifand Dal"|
|1406||VF-1J Fighter||1/100||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||"VF-1J Valkyrie"|
|1407||VF-1S Battloid||1/100||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||"VF-1S Super Valkyrie"||Phoenix Hawk|
|1408||VF-1D Guardian||1/100||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||"VF-1D Super Valkyrie"|
|1409||VF-1A Fighter||1/100||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||"VF-1A Super Valkyrie"|
|??||Khyrons Battle Pod||1/72||Super Dimension Fortress Macross||Zentradi "Glaug Commander Pod"||Marauder|
Revell Robotech models from the Fang of the Sun Dougram line seem to be repacks of model kits made by Takara. The models from the Super Dimension Fortress Macross line seem to be repacks of model kits made by Imai. The models from the Super Dimension Century Orguss line seem to be repacks of model kits made by Arii.
Release of the "'Robotech Defenders'" and "'Robotech Changers'" model lines caused problems for media company Harmony Gold USA, who licensed the North American video rights to the Japanese Macross anime series, combining it with two other series to produce an 85 episode series they hoped to market direct to video. Since Revell was already distributing the models, Harmony Gold could not support the show with merchandising. In the end, both companies decided to enter into a co-licensing agreement and the name Robotech was eventually adopted for the syndicated television show that the home video line had transformed into.
Players of FASA's BattleTech tabletop strategy game universe will instantly recognize nearly all of the models as Mechs from the original Role Playing Game sourcebooks. The reason for this is that all of the original edition's 'Mech visuals were based on designs from a variety of anime series, including Macross, Dougram, and Orguss. FASA eventually became embroiled in a lawsuit with Harmony Gold regarding the use of these images, and later removed all images not created in house from their Sourcebooks.
The comic book, a two-issue mini-series, was published by DC Comics in 1984. It was originally intended to be a trilogy, but was reduced to the first normal-sized issue and a 32-page second issue with no advertisement. The universe of the "'Robotech Defenders'" comic book series bears no resemblance at all to the Robotech universe adapted by Harmony Gold USA. The Robotech Defenders comic predates the conception of the original Robotech cartoon show by about a year.
The story followed the battles of a team of pilots who fight a savage race of aliens, called "Grelons", who have conquered Earth using superior technology. They plan to colonize Earth, using their titanic humanoid war machines to eliminate all resistance. The heroes, a small combat unit, are losing badly when their leader accidentally activates one of the Robotech Defenders. She then learns of the existence of the other machines, which are scattered on the other pilots' home planets. Each of these units has a unique range of abilities and environmental specialties (e.g., Aqualo was capable of diving and sea-based activities, Ziyon's Element was cold and snow, Thoren's heat and magma, Gartan's urban combat).
By the end of the first issue, the team have managed to recover all the robots and engage the enemy in battle, but are still defeated and get captured. They escape by pushing a big red button which releases the Defenders' minds, unleashing the latter's' full combat capabilities. The pilots then track down the controller of the savage aliens. They defeat him by causing the evil alien energy siphon to suck the energy from the sun, causing their space ship to explode.
- UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS, EASTERN DIVISION (1996). "Harmony Gold USA vs FASA". Legal Filing. Retrieved 2009-09-05.
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