Interesting reading these replies. While the Nikko Venus was my first "real" RC, it was the Kyosho Big Brute that defined my childhood. It was the first hobby-grade RC I owned, purchased with my own money. I believe it was an "Ultimate Combo" from Tower, complete with Pulsar radio, and 905 charger! This truck, and the memories it gave me, are burned into my memory forever. I'd go so far as to say this truck defined my life during middle school. I had the Brute, my best friend had a Blackfoot, and we always drooled over the Optimas, Ultimas, Infernos, etc in the RCCA ads. I never went the buggy route, though my buddy did dabble into them with a Kyosho Rocky. His Blackfoot was quite beat, and he ended up replacing it with a Kyosho Double Dare. I remember how excited we were when he received it! 4WD! 4WS! Awesome! Turns out, it was really a pile of junk. Or, rather, the 4WS was worthless. With the slightest turn, it would go rolling. He ended up disabling the 4WS, keeping front wheel steer only. It was a lot of fun after that. Those steering knuckles, though. Man oh man, we went through steering knuckles like they were candy. We went through every option our young minds could come up with. Super glue, melted sprues, epoxy, 2-part "liquid steel" mix, etc. In the end, it was all no good. Once those knuckles stripped, they were toast.
Eventually we moved from the fun basher trucks to the more "competitive" stuff. He went with a Traxxas Hawk, then Blue Eagle LSII. I ran a Blue Eagle. Other friends had joined by this time, and they ran the RC10T and JRXT. We upgraded to "fancy" radios (mine was an Airtronics XL2P), ESC's, and (peak!) chargers. It was a great time. To this day, I still remember when I sold all my RC stuff, through an ad in the local newspaper! Imagine that! I remember watching the guy take the tackle boxes off of our back deck. I wish I could go back and kick myself for getting rid of it!
Now, 30 years later, I'm trying to re-experience some of my youth. I've purchased about 10 Big Brutes in various states of disrepair, as well as 7 or so of the Nikko Turbo-Aero/Venus. I've searched for Blue Eagles as well, but they seem to command a premium, and for some reason that truck just isn't etched on my heart like the Brute is. I've also purchased/am purchasing several of the "cars of my childhood dreams", which I never owned. Re-re Blackfoot, re-re Monster beetle, and searching for a vintage Clod.
Kind of silly, but it makes me smile to see them.