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Tiny Titan Microman
1999 Series Retrospective

Originally this page brought the earliest breaking news about the new Microman series. Now I have rearranged the info to present it as a chronology of how the series reemerged after its fifteen year long dormancy....

The Return of Microman: October 1998 in Comic BomBom

Translation of the original article from the October 1998 issue of Comic BomBom:

"Beast Wars" creator Takara and Bom Bom release a new highly classified project!!
The tiny titan Microman begins here!!

More than just a toy, beyond the ultimate model kit, a hero figure launches, setting the pace for the 21st century...and its name is Microman! You, loyal readers of Bom Bom, will be the first eye-witnesses!

"Micro", indeed--he's EIGHT CENTIMETERS TALL!!!

Image of Prototype and scale

(note: this is the first picture that was seen of the new figure design)

The mysterious hero "Microman" can stand in the palm of your hand!!!

File 1: An historically ultra-small, ultra-strong, and ultra-ingenious figure--that's Microman!!!

A direct interview with the project leader!!! Professor K (Tanuki)
(Tanuki is a Japanese animal known as the "racoon dog", and is notorious in folklore for disguising itself as a human and other trickery--Bry)

Professor K(Tanuki) The man who holds the secrets of Microman. His real form shall be revealed September 24th on "TV Champion Imperial Toy (??? word not translated ???)", watch it!

"Keywords are: Infinite expansion and infinite upgradability!!!"

"The Microman is not alone, at first launch, over 20 types will be released, including machines of the transforming variety...no, I can't reveal too much detail yet, but the members will increase in number. However, the core is based on the 'Magne-Power' system
(magnemo, perhaps??? --bry) Other items and accessories with interchangable joints can be reconfigured to create your own original 'Hyper Microman' with."

For release next year? A first look at the the prototypes!!

(end of first quote)

Prototype ChangeTrooper DrillJoe
A prototype of ChangeTrooper Drilljoe...note that it is upside down, perhaps its original intended orientation. This was the first image seen of a ChangeTrooper

Prototype MagnePowers Microman Arthur figure

This is the unpainted prototype MagnePowers Microman Arthur figure, and first actual undoctored photo of what the new figures would look like.

MagnePowers Acroyear Prototype

This is the new MagnePower Acroyear prototype, again seen for the first time.

Unknown figure head (Acroyear???)

A still unidentified head of a figure, possibly of the prototype Robotman Ace.

(translation resumes)

File 2: TV animation set for release!!

Starts January, 1999!!!

The serialized manga in this magazine by Hisashi Matsumoto-sensei will become an animated series for television next year! Microman will become multi-media! More details to come next month!

Exclusive top secret pics!

At home, in a conviniece store, at a construction site...such ordinary places become life and death battlegrounds for Microman!


(end of article translation)

Arthur and DrillJoe with Kouhei at home

This picture is of Kohei (the kid), Microman Arthur (the main Microman character), and "Drilljoe" (see transformed prototype above) at home. Note that in this preproduction art, Arthur is blonde and his suit's colors are quite different (as the painting scheme was not settled yet).

Acroyears plot in a convenience store

This picture seems to be of a group of Acroyears in a store. Notice that the figure on the left with the cape is the same as the prototype seen above (compare the head, arm, and torso). what is interesting is that the othe ones visible don't seem to correspond to any actual released toy...perhaps these are a premature appearance of the never-released Beetroopers? Or an early version of the AcroMonsters?

Micromen fight an Acro-possessed feline!

This image seems to be of a team of Microman characters (including Arthur and DrillJoe, and the others may be Walt and Izam) fighting an Acroyear possessed rattlesnake and cat, which appears to have one of the characters from the "store" pic riding it...again looking an awful lot like a Beetrooper from the 2000 series.


Check out info, pics and a synopses of the first issue of the New Microman Manga Series here!

Page 1, Page 2 of 1999 Microman spread from November TV Magazine!

First pics of the completed new figures! This is a MUST SEE. These pics are BIG, so be forewarned. Thanks to Jeremy Sung for the scans and to Ruben Torres for emailing me a copy, as well (Note that the Arthur figure shown is missing the shoulder rivets and has silver details instead of white). The most exciting things this photo revealed at the time was that the figures had chromed heads like the original toys (a rumor had it otherwise) and the extensive use of transparent colors.



Page 1, Page 2, Page 3, of latest 1999 Microman spread from December TV Magazine!

More great new pics thanks to Jeremy Sung! This time, all five color variations of the first Microman figure can be seen (plus two others on the vehicles), as well as two vehicles (SpyHeli and BeatLoader) that launch from a cup of noodles and a juice can, the three new Robotman toys, Robotman Ace, Baron, and Cross, and the AcRobotman combiner robot that forms from a bat, scorpion and iguana. Also of note is that it shows SpinLee in motorcycle mode and the Changetroopers attached to Robotman! It reveals that the new Robotman is now based on the Magnemo 11 system (same as Baron Karza/Force Commander/Geag, etc), but has magnetic elbows as well (and plenty other magnetic parts)! Lots of exciting news was in this issue!

Also in at this time were these pics of the first Microman Playstation Game!


BomBom reveals more!


Studio Pierrot's Microman anime!


This is the latest image released promoting the new Studio Pierrot Microman anime series. Here we can see the Microman MagnePowers, led by Arthur, riding the Microman ChangeTroopers in vehicular mode. Note that the colors on the Micro-suits are still the early colors and Arthur is still blonde in this pic. The ChangeTroopers' more sleek form in the anime was designed by the series mecha designer, Shinobu Tsuneki, who is fan of the original Microman series and responsible for many of the visual referneces made to the old series in the anime. You can find a link to his site which has many of his cool mech designs and pics of his toys at the Rocket Tubes in the last "tube".

Arthur's MagnePower toy form looks like this!

He and his comrades came to earth in tiny capsules (unfortunately not included)!

Arthur's fellow MagnePower team-mates are:

Izam

Walt

Edison

Odin

Their MagnePower toy forms look like this...

...and the toys of their ChangeTrooper mounts--DrillJoe, SpinLee, TomaHawk, HoverJack, and BomberHead --look like this!

The ChangeTroopers can become weapon attachments for the Robotman toys, like DrillJoe is doing here with Robotman Ace:

Robotman with DrillJoe equipped!

They've come to fight the MagnePower Acroyears Demon Red, Demon Green and Demon Blue and their henchmen, the Acroyear ChangeTroopers Cobrage, Hell(Jigoku)Pinch, and ChainSpider!

I'm sure you'll be able to learn more in the new Microman catalog like Edison here:

new Microman catalog with Edison

Can't find them? Want to buy them? Try Felix Lu's FantAsia Toys! Felix is a cool guy, an honest dealer, and I've gotten most of my new stuff from him and he's as fair and quick as they come. Felix carries both new and old Microman, and if you don't see what you're looking for on his site, don't be afraid to ask him about it!


first look at the new Titan design!


The mighty new TITAN design preview! As seen in Comic Bom Bom's february issue first! As this pic of JetMogler shows, they immediately looked to be almost completely different in concept from the original Titan namesake, but still magno-compatible. The design is more Micro-Change/Transformer-like, but then all things considered, why not?

new toys previewed!


>From the back of the 1999 Microman catalog, we get an interesting preview after some enlargment and enhancement. Appears to be a magnetic Condor and Jaguar in the foreground. These could be inspired by old Titan Dober and Condor and are also very reminiscent of the microcassette Condor and Jaguar (Transformers Laserbeak and Ravage) from the MicroChange series. They are of course the concept sketches for Hurricane Bird and MagneJaguar...but notice some of the visible differences, especially in the bird's design...the body is completely different in this sketch. Behind them is a barely discernable hint of the Microstation base, in its Sony Playstation mode...there were lots of hints about this toy for some time, but it wasn't clear if it was just hype for the video game, or if it was a real toy. Not visible in this enhancement, but visible using other enhancement is a fourth drawing in the upper right corner, that looks like the face of something, but cannot be really made out.

sample of Microman Anime video cover

At WonderFest, I took this pic of a sample of the cover for upcoming videotape release of the Microman anime series. Distribution is being done by Pioneer (who also does the distribution of the US BeastWars videos in Japan and PokeMon in the US among others)...could we see a US release someday?

For more info and cool pics from Wonderfest, click here!



http://www.pierrot.co.jp/microman/
Studio Pierrot's Official Microman Anime Page!


Around this time, the official Microman Anime page opened. This is the official page on the Microman anime from its production studio, Studio Pierrot (also responsible for anime classics such as Fushigi Yuugi, Kimagure Orange Road, Yuu Yuu Hakusho, Urusei Yatsura, Creamy Mami, Fancy Lala, and many many others). Check out their links for some great pics of the character designs from the series! An official Takara page for Microman opened around now as well but sadly has since closed.

For more on the later part of the Tiny Titan Microman 1999 and 2000 toyline, check out Paul Lorphanpaibul's excellent Microman Forever page!


Microman is (c)1998/1974 Takara, Ltd, Japan. No infringement is intended.
Comic Bom Bom is (c)1998 Kodansha. All images are used for review purposes only. No infringement is intended.