Where the standard Cobra Trooper is more of a facility guard type soldier, the Viper appears to be more front line infantry. And this figure is a pretty cool update to a the classic look.
The head of the classic Viper is probably the most distinctive part of his uniform and this is a pretty straight up update. Mirrored face plate with a blue over helmet. The helmet has some pretty decent detailing on it and looks pretty good for a soft piece over the vac metal face piece.
My only issues with the head are design one. While it is a cool design and fits well with Cobra Commander, is a mirrored face practical for an infantry troops? Wouldn’t it reflect every bit of light and show your position? The second issue I have is why the googles? They give him a different look than Cobra Commander, but why does he need them?
I have to say one of the things they accomplished with this figure was getting him to look like a guy in a uniform. With faceless figures its sometimes easy to make them look a bit more like a robot than human.
To that end, he has a number of pieces from the Cobra Shock Trooper. Upper thighs and upper arms are from there, which brings with them pockets. The arm pockets are painted black and emblazoned with a Cobra logo.
The rest of the arms are done with a red forearm guard and gloves with just a bit of flesh showing. The thing that seems missing to me is some elbow pads. Seems like every soldier has them these days.
The bottom of his legs remind me of a paratrooper the way they are tucked in. That might just be me though.
The other key piece is his tactical vest. They’ve pretty much got these down at this point. This vest has some pretty nice detailing. It also has a couple different colors of paint most of the detailing is red but the pouches on the side are grey. His trio of Cobra logos if finished out with one on his chest.
Like most of the other modern GI Joe figures, there’s no real issues with the Viper’s articulation layout. The vest is a little restrictive, but no more than any of the other ones we’ve seen. This articulation includes the new style wrist pivots we’ve been seeing, as well.
Compared to a good number of other figures, the Viper gets a pretty utilitarian back pack. I’m perfectly good with that. I love the canteen in the middle of and the red grenades are a perfect match for the ones on his chest.
Where the Viper really shines is that he comes with a small arsenal. Four rifles and a rocket launcher make up for his lake of a personal handgun. The smallest gun is nearly a hand gun, almost a mini sniper rifle. The remainder of the automatic weapons are pretty well detailed. One is molded in silver, which for a change, doesn’t look half bad. I’m also loving the drum magazine on one of the others.
The highlight weapon is the rocket launcher. And it’s a non springy, non working one! A pretty nice little anti tank weapon with a removable rocket? Well done, I say. I do wish he could hold it just a tiny bit better.
You know, this is a figure I passed on in 2009, but upgraded for the 30th Anniversary line he appealed to me. This version of the Viper looks like an infantry trooper in real gear. Maybe a little more movement would be nice, butthat’s really that is the only place I see room for much improvement.
Engineernerd Score: 97/100