I was also lucky enough to own a Zoid when I was a kid, one of the Godzilla-looking ones. It ran off a few "C" batteries (remember those?). A friend had one back way back when as well, and recalls them being interchangable to a degree. Hit the big power switch on it's back, and it's plodding gait and grinding of gears was enough to keep any healthy kid occupied for hours. I recall loosing those rubber caps (whenever he got "hurt") being a problem though. And in these post-80's days some brat would surely eat one, get sick, and the whole Zoid concept would be sued into oblivion. Modern Zoids would have to be dumbed down into pre-assembled Nerf-bots, with saftey bumpers, lengthy disclaimers and a hand rail.

There is currently a Zoids anime as well, which you can see at Monday to Thursday 4pm central on Cartoon Network. It is in English. The relationship to the toy is obvious, as well as the basic premise. Large mecha-animals constantly engaged in wars. I've seen a few episodes so far and idea boils down to several Zoid teams (each consisting of up to four individual Zoids) fighting competition-style in a large secluded space of a continent. This game is regulated by a cache of ref-bots dropped from space in capsules from satellites. Also supervising are a group of people in a huge brachiosaurus-type robot.

No clear struggle to thwart evil or save the dolphins, just a robot match so far. The main conflict seems to be when an outside party (and there are several that try to do so) attempt to interfere with the game somehow, to cheat or take control of it.. The animation is pretty exciting, looking like some mix of CGI robotics and lighting with hand spun characters and backgrounds. The robotics, fighting and weapons are all a lot of fun, but since it's just a game in itself it's really hard to care about anything. After a few episodes you become familiar with the Blitz team (our home team) and others. But I rarely find myself really worried about any one competitor, just waiting for when the Godzilla-looking bots are going to fight again.