What are the Galaxy Warriors?

Part I. $$$:
Galaxy Warriors is an action figure line created in 1983 by Sungold to make money off of the huge success of Mattel's Masters of the Universe line (MOTU for short). In order to "cash in", Sungold made its figures resemble MOTU figures in scale, body shape, and in figure articulation. The body used for all the Galaxy Warriors figures is a copy of the He-Man figure from MOTU, with some minor differences.

He-Man vs. Galaxy Warriors:
    When comparing He-Man to a Galaxy Warrior the differences become obvious (see photo below).

In the photo above we can see how the Galaxy Warrior Triton's body has been modeled to match He-Man's. Triton's figure is slightly smaller than He-Man, and his legs have a greater bend at the knees. The arms are also very different, especially around the shoulders.

Part II. The Toy-Line:

Galaxy Warriors consisted of 12 figures and 4 beasts (for details on each, click on their respective pages listed to the right of your screen). Much of the original line was inspired by the artwork of Frank Frazetta. To read more about this please see, The Frazetta Connection.
    Two more figures were released later on blister cards with the title Swords & Sorcerers (S&S). These two figures, Deevil and Rahh, are considered part of the Galaxy Warriors line even though they were never released on the "standard" Galaxy Warriors blister card (shown below). The S&S figures were only released in the UK, and they were released by Acamas Toys instead of Sungold. For more information and analysis regarding the very intriguing Swords and Sorcerers Galaxy Warriors, go Here.
    Some years later, possibly in the late 1980's or early 1990's, Sungold re-released the entire Galaxy Warriors line of figures as Freedom Fighters.
    The toy-line may have also included a rumored accessory pack that contained 2 weapons, a shield and a harness, but this is unconfirmed. There are also rumors that the toy-line included a castle play-set  The rumored Castle did exist, but was not actually part of the Galaxy Warriors line. 

Original release of the Galaxy Warrior Thor.

Back of a Galaxy Warriors blister card.

Fearful Beast packaging that would have contained the Dinosaur, Mammoth, Tiger or Horse.

Image from back of Beast of Ferror box.

It is interesting to note that the image from the Beast of Ferror box (above) shows Huk's beard as blonde and Dragoon with a green head that is different then the head he was actually produced with. These are probably prototype figures, and it can be assumed that this image was compiled before final changes where made to the appearances of Huk and Dragoon. For the final release, Huk's beard was made red and his helmet was made brown. Dragoon's head was made red to match his body, and he was given horns.
   [There is an alternate beast-box with lots of interesting and strange images that can be seen on the page dedicated to the Horse.]

Prototype Dragoon.
Prototype Huk.

Part III. The Knockoff got Knocked-off: Warriors vs. Fighters!
    Galaxy Warriors figures were themselves knocked-off by Sewco who produced Galaxy Fighters in 1984 (see photo below). Sewco may have obtained some of the molds for Galaxy Warriors figures since several of the Warrior figures appear in the Galaxy Fighter line, some even under the same name. The Galaxy Warriors that were copied in the Galaxy Fighter line are: Baltard, Anubi (renamed Walph), Sahak (renamed Kobraa), and Magnon (renamed Daton and given black hair). Baltard was copied a second time in the Galaxy Fighter line when he was given an eye patch and his top knot was removed. This "new" character was called Batoon.
    Galaxy Fighters came with different harnesses, shields and weapons than the Galaxy Warriors did. The Fighters' accessories make them seem less barbaric than the Warriors and they are usually easier to find on the secondary market. Galaxy Fighters did not copy any of the beasts in the Warriors line and instead made one new beasts of their own and one vehicle.
    In my opinion, the head sculpts found in the Warriors line are more interesting and superior to the heads found in the Fighters line.

Galaxy Fighters by Sewco.
Galaxy Fighters release of the Galaxy Warrior, Baltard.

     The easiest way to tell the two lines apart, when confronted with similar looking characters, is by the fingers on their left hands. Galaxy Warriors have fingers that are spread apart in the style of MOTU figures like He-Man and Skeletor. Galaxy Fighters have a left hand with closed fingers. Also, Galaxy Warriors will have Sungold stamped on their leg or back, while Galaxy Fighters will either have a Sewco stamp or no stamp (see photos below). For detailed analysis of more connections between the Galaxy Warriors and the Galaxy Fighters please see, Warriors becoming Fighters.

Galaxy Warrior with Sungold stamp.
Galaxy Fighter with Sewco stamp.
When examining the overall sculpts and finished product in the two lines, it becomes apparent that the  Warriors are of a slightly higher quality than the Fighters. This is very obvious when comparing the backs of the figures (see photos below). The Warriors figures have nicely sculpted muscular backs, reminiscent of Mattel's He-Man figure. The Fighters have a less appealing back with some basic shallow grooves.
      The sculpts for the Warriors' heads, arms, and "furry underwear" are also of a nicer/ more appealing quality than the Fighters' versions. So, although the two lines are extremely similar, the Warriors are a superior product.

Galaxy Warriors back sculpt.

Galaxy Fighters back sculpt.
Part IV. Variations:
Two basic variations of the Galaxy Warriors exist. One version is the first release of these figures, and the second version is a later release of slightly lower quality. For lack of better terms, I will call these variations "Version One" and "Version Two."

     Version One: The original line came on blister cards with the names of the individual characters printed on the front of the card. Out of the package these figures can be determined by the Sungold stamp that is found on the right leg of the figures (see previous leg image above). When compared to "Version Two" figures, it is apparent that these figures are of a slightly better quality. This is especially noticeable on figure heads, and around their shoulders where Version Two figures appear to have arms made from a different "cheaper" plastic.

Version One blister cards with character names on front. 

     Version Two: What I am calling Version Two Galaxy Warriors came on blister cards that did NOT name the characters on the front of the card. These figures were probably released later than the original 1983 line. These figures can be determined by the Sungold stamp that is found on their back, and NOT on their right leg (see below). In my experience of removing figures from Version Two blister cards, they have all had Sungold stamped on their backs instead of their legs.

Example of Version Two card with No name.
Shrunken Heads and other Variants:
The most noticeable difference between the two versions is in the quality of the heads. Most Version Two figures have heads that are lighter in color. The lighter color comes from the use of different plastics, and it might also be a result of the breakdown of the plastic itself caused by light and humidity. The two releases of figures may have been made at different plants which could also account for some differences.
      For example, the Version One Anubi figure usually has a dark brown head while the Version Two Anubi, with the stamp on its back, has a light brown head. A lighter head does not always denote that a figure is a Version Two figure. I have seen Version One Magnon figures with light heads and with "tan" heads. I have also seen Version One Dino Man figures with tan heads and a few with green heads. Baltard is a figure that has two different hair colors, red and "purplish-brown."
     Some Version Two heads suffer from what I call "shrunken head" syndrome when compared to the original release figures. The "shrink" didn't happen to all the figures, but on some it is very noticeable. The Huk figure is a great example of the shrunken head (see photos below). The original figure has an awesome beard that sweeps out away from his head. The second version has a head and beard that are narrow and very underwhelming.

Original Huk with a wide sweeping beard.

Shrunken head Huk, with narrow head.
Galaxy Warriors have two different boot styles and two different wristband styles. The boots are either with a flat top, or with a "v" cut into the top. Wristbands will either be "spiky" or "bumpy", or they will have circular bands.

Flat boots.
V-Cut boots.

Circular wristband.

Bumpy wristband.
The variations on the boots and wristbands may be random. But, from examining my own personal collection, I will say that I think the V-Cut boots and the bumpy wristbands are much less common. The vast  majority of GW figures I have seen have the flat boots and circular wristbands.

Version Three?
There is another version/ release of Warriors were the stamp on their backs simply reads Sungold (see below). We can assume that this release came after the Version Two figures, but more research is needed to determine how these Version Three figures compare to the other two versions. On the Thor figure below, we can see that the head is slightly shrunken and of a lower quality than the original, and it is painted differently.
    There is a good chance that the Version Three figures with the Sungold back stamp are the figures released under the name Freedom Fighters.

Version Three Thor.

Original Version One Thor.

Caution: Potential collectors should be aware of these differences, and should be careful when purchasing figures from Ebay. Many sellers will claim they are selling a Galaxy Warrior, when they are actually selling a Galaxy Fighter, or worse yet, a Galaxy Heroe or some other cheaper derivative. If you are concerned about getting a Version One figure, then ask the Ebay seller where the Sungold stamp is on the figure. If its on the right leg, then you should be fine. If there is NO stamp, then don't bid. Also note that the legs of the Galaxy Heroes are molded solid with their bodies and cannot move.

Avoid these.