When the Transformers came out, I thought they were amazing. I didn’t watch the cartoon, but I thought the toys were the coolest thing. A friend at school had the one that turned into a train and a space shuttle and I visibly drooled over that thing. Problem was, they were kind of expensive. As a result I only had a handful of Transformers ever, and most of those I got when they line was waning in popularity and they were discounted. The few I had — some of the Dinobots, some Insecticons, Thundercracker, Soundwave, some of the cassettes — were eBayed or otherwise disposed of long ago.
Go-Bots, on the other hand, were cheap knockoffs of the Transformers toys, with the emphasis on “cheap”. And they had something the Transformers didn’t have: an inexpensive transforming red Lamborghini.
During a period of time when I tried vainly to not be so nerdy I decided to be interested in cars. I wasn’t (and still have little interest), but I tried to pretend I was, and decided that I really liked the Lamborghini Countach (it’s a fast expensive car, but it looks like a spaceship, so there you go). I had a poster and everything. So although I really wanted Sideswipe, the Transformer who was a red Lamborghini Countach, he was hard to find and cost too much. On the other hand, the Go-Bots had a small robot that did the same thing, named Spoiler. (Apparently this character later went on to be a sidekick to Batman but dies or something; I haven’t really followed either Batman or the Go-Bots.)
Spoiler, the toy, is kind of lame, but it served the purpose of me having a transforming robot toy of my so-called dream car. It has almost zero articulation, and there’s nothing particularly interesting about the transformation, but it served its purpose. In fact, it did so well enough that I also got a Leader-1, who actually does do a pretty neat transformation and is kind of cool. I don’t really remember “playing” with them much (I was a little old for them when they came out) except to just sort of “swoosh” and transform them.
When did I get it? Go-Bots came out in 1983, and I probably got them around ’84. I don’t really remember and don’t have many memories associated with them to really know for sure.
Do I still have it? Yep. I saved them from the Big Nerd Box for some reason, though I don’t have any of my Transformers anymore (and I didn’t ever get into any of the later editions of Transformers.)