Convertors & Robot Changers

Distributed by SELECT and MARK (HERO?)

The Convertors and Robot Changers toy lines are a strangely endearing mix of medium quality diecast cars, cheap copies of classic anime vehicles and uncommon alt modes.

Most if not all of the models offered were licensed copies of toys previously released by the Japanese company MARK. MARK designed some of the models in-house as well as acquiring others from another Japanese toy companies such as Takatoku, EXCITE and likely Gakken.

Convertors were released in North American, Canada and Australia (and likely elsewhere) via SELECT with the European Robot Changers distribution thought to have come direct from MARK. The question here is that the only piece of marketing material found for the line shows HERO Toys as the distributor. HERO are another Japanese toy company completely unrelated to these products. Whether MARK registered a business in Europe called HERO, MARK and HERO in Japan were linked in some way or the marketing was simply incorrect we're yet to discover. The models, card art and distribution were definitely property of MARK at the time of distribution. The Robot Changers cardbacks not showing a company name could certainly indicate the exploitation of a legality loophole.

Both toy lines largely mirrored each other, however both also included a number of distribution specific toys. Many figures released for Convertors saw additional colour schemes created specifically for that line. In contrast, Robot Changers included only the versions matching those released in Japan. For example, the red variant of Convertors figure Zark was not part of the Robot Changers line.

In contrast to Convertors, Robot Changers distribution information is limited. The toy blister cards are conspicuously devoid of company information and are simply printed, 'Made in Japan'. The toys however show the same blend of MARK, Takatoku and SELECT stamping with the addition of EXCITE on models that weren't released for Convertors. Most of the figures received new, more plain English names; eg. Sunyak became Space Challenger. This isn't unique to Robot Changers as toys were often renamed to appeal to the target, multilingual European market with easy to read English that children were more likely to understand and be attracted to. This has also likely why some Convertors reference sites list toys with seemingly incorrect names as regionally they've used the Robot Changers titles.

While both lines have some stand out examples, MARK's reputation for releasing budget versions of other company's creations is also well reflected.

As Robot Changers weren't sold in a set number of Series or for the most part in sub categories such as Avarians as Convertors was, they are located below in the Convertors distribution arrangement. At this time it's not complete clear that the entire Robot Changers line has been sighted.

Previously licensed models include:

Takatoku: Battle Armored Battalion Dorvack, Galactic Whirlwind Sasuraiger, Beetras, Super High Speed Galvion, Super Dimension Fortress Macross and Super Dimension Century Orguss.

MARK: Action Robo, Robo Car, American Robo Car, Gokin Robo, Bird Robo, Zectron and Battle Blocker.

Gakken: Henshin Robo  /  EXCITE: Wrist Robo


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