This is the Encore reissue of the toy that came out in the 1987 - except (wikipedia informs me) due to licensing issues, it wasn't actually released as a Transformers toy by Takara in Japan until 2008. As fate would have it, Tomy had the rights so when Takara and Tomy merged in 2007 they were finally able to release Sky Lynx and Omega Supreme (what? Japan never had Omega? Shocking!)
I never had any special interest in the character in the 80s because I never watched the third season of the cartoon until it was released on DVD (which is where the character first appeared), and I never had any interest in it afterwards because...well, it doesn't really look that good.
Anyway, for reasons which basically come down to because it was there, I picked this up from Memorabilia yesterday for £35 (good price? bad price? I have no idea). The toy is basically as good as it looks. Which might not be as bad as I originally thought...
There are four/five modes (depending on how you look at it) - space shuttle, space shuttle on wheels, bird-robot thing with little legs and lion-robot thing, and bird-robot thing with lion-robot legs.
As vehicles, the shuttle looks like a shuttle and the bottom looks like...well, it doesn't really look like anything. It's purpose is there as an excuse to stick some electronics in, make it more appealing to kids, and in addition bump the price up.
The Transformation is simple, and maybe it's because of this I actually really like it. Unlike modern Transformers you can convert Sky Lynx from one mode to the next in the space of about 10 seconds. Which, if you're a kid, is perfect for a toy. Who wants to spend 1/2 hr changing to space shuttle, flying the length of the living room to the enemy base (a journey taking approximately 5 seconds), and then taking another 1/2 hr to change back into a robot to attack the bad guys?
In robot mode, Sky Lynx can either have skinny legs or the legs from the lion (okay, so it's supposed to be a lynx, but my son says it's a lion and I've learnt not to argue about such things). It's a bit basic, to say the least, but it gets the job done. The lion has the ability to walk, which is fun and his back is flat enabling him to give lifts to all his friends.
My son (who's 4) loves this guy. Even though he thinks it's a plane (I tried explaining, but he insisted and eventually I just gave in and agreed 'yeah, it's a plane'). He loves the way the bottom bit walks across the carpet. He loves flying the plane around the room and he loves the fact that he can transform it by himself.
Yes, it's a simple toy. Yes, the articulation is limited. Yes, the character was a bit strange in the cartoon. But, hey, I agree with my son and love the toy too.