We had no idea if they were good robots...or bad robots...or even if they were truly robots. Although Marvel Comics eventually produced a Shogun Warriors comic book series, for the majority of the time the toys were on the shelf, we had no idea who the characters were or what their background was. Frankly, I still don't know. There was, however, a Godzilla figure as part of the line to help "Trojan Horse" these very Japanese looking toys on to American toy shelves. So, we did figure that these guys were supposed to fight him...or something.
At any rate, despite their very non-American toy appearance, the Shogun Warriors were just too cool to pass up. They were released by Mattel Toys. I believe Mattel was importing these from a Japanese Toy company named Popy. Interestingly enough, most of the copyright information molded on the figures is in Japanese.
These were large and quite expensive toys (generally speaking). So, in my neighborhood, everyone kind of had their own single Shogun Warrior and we tried not to double up and get the same one as a buddy. Shoguns weren't really a toy line where we hoped to get every figure. At least, that's how it was in my neck of the woods. My Shogun was this guy. His name is Dragun. That's all I knew about him except that he looked cool, fired shuriken-like stars out of his arm cannon, flung axes, and had spinning buzz-saws in his forearms.
Dragun has wheels on the bottoms of his feet, kind of like roller skates. His head turns and he is jointed at the shoulders. That's about it for articulation. His arm cannon rapid-fires red, yellow, and blue stars that are loaded into the top of the unit. He also features a spring-loaded axe flinging mechanism in his left hand. Just place the axe in his hand, rock it back into place, and hit the release button... axe flinging robot goodness at its finest. Dragun's buzz-saws are free-spinning and require a good flick-of-the-wrist to get them going.
A complete Dragun includes either 6 or 10 stars (depending on the release) and three axes (white, yellow, and blue). Obviously, this Dragun is a little short on battle gear.
Today, this guy has a place of honor in my studio after being rescued from the garage. I don't know whether to fear him...or slap him on the back for being such a good robot.
I may never know.