Well, our prayers have been answered, and there is finally a real Nautica toy. No longer do you gotta, like, order a 3D printed kit from Shapeways to turn Beast Hunters Starscream into the Lost Light's favorite socially awkward quantum mechanic.
There's a few hurdles in the way to getting her, however. Three, in fact. Their names are Laser Prime, Rodimus, and Quickswitch, and she comes in a giant $100 boxset with them. It's the only way to get her, I'm sorry! Sure, some folks are splitting up their sets on eBay, but Nautica's by far the hottest ticket. She can cost as more than half of the set by herself. Everyone else is an also-ran.
But, y'know, if this is what it takes to get a Nautica, I'm down. These days box sets like hers (titled "Chaos on Velocitron," btw, despite nobody in it being a Velocitronian) exist as a "we can't fit these into our normal wave-by-wave production schedule, so let's dump them off in sets" dealio. It's this or nothing, and I will gladly take this. And, y'know, maybe if Hasbro notices that Nautica was the Big Deal here, it might open them up to more Nauticas later.
Nautica is a retool of Titans Return Blurr. Specifically, she's got a new face and two new propeller wings which plug into the pre-existing 5mm pegholes on her shoulders. She transforms into Blurr's futuristic racecar mode with some propeller wings. It works well enough for Nautica's altmode of "futuristic submersible" if you ignore that Blurr is, um, a convertible. He's got an open top, and now so does this submarine. Whoops.
Blurr as Nautica works strongly for me. It helps that Blurr is, y'know, a fantastic toy (which I was happy to also get retooled as Brainstorm), so Nautica's already starting out with a solid foundation. I also think that, out of all the other current Titans Return figures, Blurr's is the one that best works as both her robot and her vehicle form. Yeah, there's a TR Windblade coming up, but, like, I dunno, TR Windblade is very super obviously a jet, and also TR Windblade's robot mode is more svelt than Nautica is. Sure, Nautica has an hourglass figure, but she's got big boxy kibble on her arms and over her shoulders and big boxy boots. Windblade's just a lady with wings, with tapering legs and skinny arms. A Windblade retool would give us that hourglass figure but leave everything else short, including turning into Super Obviously A Jet And Not A Sea Vessel. Meanwhile, Blurr's altmode is vague enough that it works as anything. It's a wedge. And now it's a wedge with propellers. Bam, it's a water vehicle. Blurr also gives Nautica her big boots, and the wedge-shaped vehicle kibble on her forearms, and the placement of propeller wings on her arms maintains Nautica's silhouette.
Some folks have also suggested Nautica from Scourge, but, like, no. Yeah, Scourge is a Space Boat, but his transformation prevents anything resembling Nautica's silhouette from occurring. If you retool the Boat Shell on his back to be Nautica's propeller wings, you end up with an altmode that's a robot folded up with wings attached to it, and not in the fun way. And if you just retool propeller wings onto the ends of the Boat Shell halves, you end up with a robot that has wings on the ends of wings. It just can't work, I'm sorry. And that's before we get to Scourge's He-Man proportions in robot mode. He is girthy.
Nautica's new head-robot guy partner is unnamed on the packaging. This is dumb.
I also kinda wish they'd given Nautica her magical Doctor Who wrench, but they didn't, and so I just gave her one of Generations Wheeljack's. I also unplug her propeller wings and swap them so they face backwards. This gives her more shoulder kibble bulk, which I think is more evocative of her.
Sadly, she arrived to my shelves too late to hang out witih Skids.