Heroic Warriors, Powers of Grayskull

Tytus: Heroic Giant Warlord (1988)

Tytus was originally intended for the 1987 line of figures, within the “Powers of Grayskull” subline. However, due to the collapse in US sales for Masters of the Universe that year, it was scrapped for US release and only sold in limited quantities in Europe the following year.

Design & Development

Tytus was designed by Alan Tyler, the artist who also designed He-Ro and Eldor. An early version of his design featured white eyes and a very revealing costume, even by MOTU standards. We see two weapons options in the illustrations below: one with a strange, short club and the other with a clawed capturing weapon. His costume is silver, blue and yellow. The key elements of his metal headband, metal boots, long blond hair and grabbing weapon are in place.

Another take by Tyler gives him more human-looking eyes, and a slightly more substantial costume. This one features red rather than yellow gems.

Image source: The Power and The Honor Foundation

A heavily cropped final version of the concept was featured in Dark Horse’s 2015 book, The Art of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe. He is given a “G” emblem on his chest, representing Grayskull. At the time the name of the protagonist of the Powers of Grayskull series was Grayskull, later changed to He-Ro.

Image source: The Power and The Honor Foundation

In a piece of concept art to illustrate the idea of Preternia, we do see a heroic-looking giant figure, although this version lacks any chest harness and has brown hair:

Image source: The Power and the Honor Foundation

Tytus’s final weapon was completed redesigned by Mattel artist David Wolfram. He described the process to me below:

Regarding the Tytus weapon: A lot of the time, the preliminary design group would “hand wave” their way through presentations, leaving the more practical aspect of how something would work to the final design group. This was a classic example. At the product conference to get the approval to go ahead on the project, Larry Renger was demonstrating the feature for Tytus. He had something that resembled a claw, and said it would trap a figure. Of course, in its configuration he had to literally wrap the fingers around it while saying that in the final toy it would work differently. After it was dumped on me, it was pretty apparent that no claw-like accessory would work, due to the difference in configuration of the many figures, and also that anytime you tried to wrap something around a figure, it would just knock it over. For the most part, the one consistency was in the head area, which also coincided with the arc of the downward swing from the giant. I started thinking about ways of trapping things, and the “lobster trap” seemed like the best way to go, and it ended up working out pretty well.

David Wolfram interview with Adam McCombs for The Toys of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe
Revised Tytus weapon designed by David Wolfram. Photo: He-Man.org

Below is image of an early factory sample of Tytus, which I believe was displayed at a Power-Con convention panel a number of years ago. You can see that the hair on this version is not quite right, and flairs outward in multicolored streaks. But you can also see the updated costume with more substantial harness with Grayskull insignia, furry trunks, and gold, silver and gray color scheme.

“Tytus would like to speak with your manager about the poor quality pumpkin spice latte he received.” Image shared by Mantisaur82

Figure & Packaging

The toy was featured in Mattel’s 1987 Catalog, as it had originally been planned for a release that year. Alas, with the cancellation of the toyline, it would only see limited release in Europe, and was delayed to 1988. You can see in the catalog photos the “Body Snatcher” weapon. The catalog text says he has had a spring-action arm feature, but I believe it was actually just a “swing-action arm.” There was a gear connecting the right arm to the head that would make Tytus’ head turn as the arm swung down.

Image source: Nathalie NHT

You can see a fairly nice example of Tytus in the images below, sourced from He-Man.org. The figure, like Megator, featured rooted hair and was about 17 inches tall, towering over standard Masters of the Universe figures.

Most Tytus figures were manufactured in Italy. However a very few were manufactured in Mexico. The latter have a Mexico stamp on the back of the belt, while Italian Tytuses don’t have a country name on the figure. A test-shot Mexican Tytus figure was featured in Tomart’s Action Figure digest, below:

You can seen the Mexico (left) vs Italy belts in the images below, originally posted by Matias Lonati:

You can see the details of the “Body Snatcher” weapon in the images below from John Baracani. The capture area featured a rubbery piece with four protrusions that would help to hold onto a standard figure’s head:

You can see a disassembled version of the figure below in a photo by customizer Jon English (MasterEnglish Customs). Note the gear mechanisms connecting the head and right arm.

Tytus was packaged in a large window box with an illustration on the front by William George:

William George box art. Image via He-Man.org/Masters Unbound. Originally scanned with window digitally removed by Emiliano Santalucia.

The back of the box gave a very little bit of information on Tytus while describing his action features. I’m not sure who did the art here:

Image via He-Man.org/Masters Unbound

There was apparently a Mexico Tytus in US Packaging that surfaced about 14 years ago. You can read about that here.

Background Information

Tytus and Megator were alluded to in some of the development documents for the Preternia/Powers of Grayskull concept. I’ll quote a few passages below:

He-Man was standing on a plain of tall grass. In the distance, he could see great creatures-dinosaurs!–lumbering across the land. On a nearby ridge, a band of giants peacefully prepared a meal. He-Man was in awe. “It is Eternia! It’s filled with all the things the legends had told me! Dinosaurs–and giant men–and… He-Man suddenly leaped back. “SNAKES!”


As the battle continued, giants raced down from their lairs in the mountains to join the fray–on both sides. Sorceress pointed to the strongest of them. “He is the leader of the giants who defend Grayskull. His people perform mighty feats that cannot be accomplished by magic. And over there– Sorceress pointed to gigantic robotic beasts that were stalking into the village. “There is King Hiss’s legion of evil giants.”

You can read the documents in their entirety here.

Artwork & Advertising

Errol McCarthy illustrated Tytus in one surviving drawing, below. It may have been done originally for the 1987 Style Guide, but Tytus doesn’t actually appear there, most likely due to his having been dropped from the roster that year.

Tytus and He-Ro. Image via He-Man.org

There were only a couple of print ads for Tytus published in Europe:

Unfortunately, to my knowledge Tytus never appeared in any comic stories or poster artwork. It’s a shame!

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5 thoughts on “Tytus: Heroic Giant Warlord (1988)

  1. Do you have any insight into which MOTU figure was produced in the smallest number? I would think it would be between Tytus, Megator, Laser Power He-Man/Skeletor, Blue Beard Stratos, or “wonderbread” He-Man. Just curious as to which might be the rarest. I appreciate your amazing work!

    1. Hi Brian, thanks for the kind words. I don’t have production numbers, but here is my best guess, from more rare to least rare: Blue Beard Stratos, “Wonder Bread” He-Man, Tytus/Megator, Laser Variants

  2. Hopefully you can eventually find more stuff from the POG era one day, like other character models and maybe some more storyline.

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