GI Joe Weapons Trees

GI Joe Weapons Trees Were Good, Actually

GI Joe Weapons Trees

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In 1993 and 1994, many GI Joe figures came with “weapons trees,” which were multiple, reused weapons from earlier figures attached to a plastic sprue. They were all molded in one color, and very often made no sense for the character they were packed with. This often meant your brand new figure would be brandishing Rock Viper’s oversized sniper rifle in dark purple or neon green– hardly the “realistic” weaponry GI Joe fans of the 1980s (and early 90s!) expected to come with their military action figures. 

But I’m here to tell you that these weapons trees were just as much of a blessing as they were a curse. Even if you’re currently balling up your fists and loading up photos of 1985 Snake Eyes to remind yourself of the “Good Ol’ Days” right now because the very thought that weapons trees might be somehow positive makes your brain vomit a little bit, just bear with me. 

Because, once upon a time, I hated them, too. That’s right– as an unabashed fan of 1990s GI Joe, even I wasn’t always on board with weapons trees. As I became an adult and began collecting ARAH-style Joes again, though, I realized how much I actually used those weapons as a kid, and how valuable they really were to me. 

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1993 Gi Joe Wet-Suit battle corps

1993 GI Joe Wet-Suit (Battle Corps) – Dragon Fortress Reviews

1993 Gi Joe Wet-Suit battle corps

Motto: “Well, with all due respect, nobody told me that was a BBC documentary crew submarine, SIR!”

WET-SUIT has been characterized as being “two Ikea shelving units worth of mean on the hoof” and “twice as frustrating to deal with.” He is definitely not big on social graces, and was recently 86’d from the Oasis. He is not the type who goes over very well as the Chaplain Assistants’ Social Tea, as he only drinks tall cans of Twisted Tea (always shotgunned, always two at a time) and Monster Energy Java. Despite being an elite underwater operator, no one has ever seen him drink a single glass of H2O. Even so, he is exactly the dude you want behind you when you run into a gaggle of Cobra EELS in a shallow mine field or in a kiddie pool filled with Green Jello. Amazing how much damage he can do with a Ka-Bar knife and a Breitbart comments account. Wet-Suit is the head-honcho in charge of piloting the GI Joe Barracuda, which is an unnecessary title he just made up because he needs to feel like he retains some control over his life.

Equipment:

  1. Totally-real, totally-not-a-movie prop undersea spear rifle
  2. Air-tight, underwater helmet with 360° unscrambled Cinemax
  3. High-impact, delayed detonation torpedo (hunter orange for safety reasons)
  4. Low drag, nautical jet sled with heads-up display and neck pillow
  5. Pulse-powered, battlefield wrist viewer with scrambled Showtime
  6. Portable beeper/female body inspector
  • Official V8 Survival Juice Drink
  • Select-a-charge war crime devices
  • Snug fit, deep water flippers (always worn with socks)

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1993 GI Joe Star Brigade Invader

1993 GI Joe Star Brigade Invader – Dragon Fortress Reviews

1993 GI Joe Star Brigade Invader

It’s Cobra’s interplanetary attack craft that’s “hoppin” mad! It’s also sincerely “hoppin” you won’t notice it’s just an older toy, which no one liked the first time around, with a missile launcher glued to one of its legs!

The INVADER attacks by plummeting from the upper atmosphere and pouncing on unsuspecting victims dwelling on planet surfaces. That is, it would if its targeting read out was any larger or more sophisticated than a Sega Game Gear, and its pilot had even rudimentary military training. Instead, when you see the INVADER coming from a mile away, you’ll notice it looks like a big neon blender with legs, and you can just either take a few steps to the right or get into your car and go out for a pack of smokes.

Don’t worry, the INVADER isn’t going anywhere. Regardless, this ballistic battle ball features lunar landing legs, an opening command canopy, and a spring-fired missile launcher. So basically it fires one shot, it can fit a plastic spaceman in its neon green innards, and it can stand up on its three legs. And we use the term “stand up” in the loosest possible sense.

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1993 GI Joe Street Fighter 2 Vega

1993 GI Joe Street Fighter 2 Vega – Dragon Fortress Reviews

1993 GI Joe Street Fighter 2 Vega

Of noble blood, Vega has successfully combined the Japanese art of Ninjutsu with the skills he learned as a matador. He honed his ninja skills by watching Ninja Scroll 12 times in one week, and he’s pretty sure he saw a cow once. So, total ninja and matador. The result is a beautiful, yet fearsome, ballet in which led him to call himself “The Spanish Ninja” on all online forums and job applications. Vega lives by the philosophy that beauty is strength. Despising anything ugly, such as Hammer Pants and any post-1986 McDonald’s play place, Vega views himself as perfect– much how he views all Lisa Frank (™) products. He wears a mask to protect his face from enduring damage in battle, but it really just gives him pretty bad acne and allows him to smell his own tapas breath. Grody, dude.

Used by M. Bison primarily as an assassin, Vega often dispatches foes with his claw (sold separately).

Qualified Expert: All Ninja Force accessories, All NATO and Warsaw Pact chainlink fences, red roses, hockey mask, white roses, all animal-tested skin creams and moisturizers, wolverine claw (singular)

From the Files of M. Bison, Shadowloo Overlord: “Vega is a useful idiot. He’s like one of those kids who buys swords at the mall and practices in his backyard after school, but instead of his backyard, it’s my courtyard. Oh, and guess who buys his claws for him? Yeah, that’s right, me. Even though the guy has more money than sense, he’s super stingy. Still, someone has to distract Guile and Chun-Li when they come knocking at my door, and sometimes Vega gets a pretty good cheap shot in. Oh, and he’s really not that handsome. Have you seen Christian Slater lately? I mean, come on. There’s really no comparison.”

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1993 GI Joe Battle Corps Law

1993 GI Joe Battle Corps Law – Dragon Fortress Reviews

1993 GI Joe Battle Corps Law

As head of Security for GI Joe, Law has acquired a reputation as a relentless narc in the barracks and a loudmouth nerd on the battlefield. He’s a slow-talking, uneducated, and lazy military cop, but he usually shows up to work on time. That makes him an ideal candidate for the Battle Corps team. When Battle Corps needed a new member to protect the innocent from Cobra, they tried to call Shockwave, but he was busy driving a Lamborghini around Miami and loading up on gas station hot dogs (the kind with the cheese in the middle). Law wasn’t the team’s second or third choice, but he’d know that if he ever bothered to read the paperwork– or if he bothered to read anything other than Bazooka Joe comics and the Jungle Strike instruction manual!

Law is the kind of soldier who walked a beat for days, and then complained about it until HQ gave him a patrol golf cart. Law’s main goal is to rid the world of criminals, but since he thinks everyone but him is a criminal, he’s going to lead a very lonely existence if he ever succeeds.

From the Files of General Hawk: “I never cared much for cops, and Law is no exception. I liked him much better when his dog, Order, was still around. No one knows for sure, but the rumor is Law lost Order in a custody battle with his ex-wife. Order’s probably better off, but the Joe team mourns the loss of one of its favorite members. Order would go fetch you an ice cold Yo Joe Cola right out of the fridge, and even shut the refrigerator door when he was done. What a good boy! Law, on the other hand? Eh. He’s Duke’s responsibility, as far as I’m concerned.”

From the Files of Duke: “God dammit, Hawk.”

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1993 GI Joe Crimson Guard Commander – Dragon Fortress Reviews

 

dragon-fortress-1993-crimson-guard-commander-outside

No one is sure what a CRIMSON GUARD COMMANDER actually does. Cobra Commander bills them as “elite officers” and “masters of corporate espionage and field combat operations,” but most Cobra personnel have never seen any of those descriptors in action. In fact, no one in Cobra is really sure if there’s more than one Crimson Guard Commander, even though Cobra Commander insists there that’s the case. No one knows if they have anything to do with the Crimson Guard– not even the Crimson Guardsmen themselves! Mostly, a Crimson Guard Commander seems to act as Cobra middle management, and that’s where their true ruthlessness becomes apparent. If some unlucky soul sees a Crimson Guard Commander in person, chances are the CGC is monitoring a Tele Viper or Techno Viper’s tech support calls for “quality assurance,” or delegating nightmarish tasks to Cobra’s enlisted men. Even Big Bad Cobras are afraid of the Crimson Guard Commander; after all, no one wants to shine Destro’s head or file Cesspool’s taxes– but a CGC just might make them do it!

They also insist their primary weapon is a highly-modified AK-47 laser rifle, like you can just stick AA batteries in an AK-47’s magazine and it starts magically shooting lasers. Yeah, right.

Qualified Expert: All Weapons Trees and Spring Loaded Devices, Totally Real AK-47 Laser Rifle, Minesweeper, All NATO and Warsaw Pact Quickbooks Software, Cobra RAT

From the Files of Cobra Commander: “I love those Crimson Guard Commanders! There are totally more than one, and I know exactly what they do and how they’re unique from the rest of the Siegees. Sure, a Crimson Guard Immortal is pretty great, but they don’t have COMMANDER in their name, so they just don’t compare to a Seigee See. Plus, the Crimson Guard Commanders totally supply their own bullets and never complain about putting money into their health savings accounts, unlike the enlisted rabble. Easily my favorite, most elite officers. They’re so cool and badass that if they ever turned against me (they wouldn’t), they’d be almost as dangerous as GI Joe! Plus we’re totally friends and hang out all the time, doing dirt bike stunts and shotgunning cans of Red Dog American Imperialist Lager in the Burger King Parking lot.”

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