TRANSFORMERS WAR FOR CYBERTRON: SIEGE
You didn’t think I was done with the Transformers reviews, did you? Of course not, that would be preposterous. The Transformers are my new life. They give, they take, and I am merely their humble servant…wait, no that doesn’t quite sound right, does it? Joking aside, Transformers sure do have a way of forcing themselves into a collection. They’re a little like potato chips: you can’t have just one (unless you’re me and you don’t actually like potato chips all that much. I’m weird). Fortunately, for all of us who feel an undying need for multitudes of Transformers, Hasbro has a tendency to release multiples of them, all at the same time. Crazy, I know. I’m mixing things up a bit today and taking a look at a prominent Decpticon fixture, Shockwave!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Shockwave is the second of the two figures in the first Leader Class wave of the War For Cybertron: Siege line. The line is very definitely G1-inspired, and so is Shockwave…after a fashion. I’ll get to that in a moment. Right out of the box, in his fully-kitted robot mode, Shockwave stands just shy of 7 inches tall from his feet to the top of his head, and he has 30 points of practical articulation. Shockwave’s out of the box design takes his G1 appearance and sort of amplifies it. He gets a lot pointier, and of course gets the extra arms as well. It’s a decent, rather menacing sort of look, and further adds the that inhuman charm of Shockwave. As we saw with Ultra Magnus, Shockwave is full of a lot of small detail work, which makes him a little more kibbly than the very clean Optimus figure, though it certainly works for Shockwave. Shockwave may lack the traditional face, but that doesn’t mean Hasbro skimped on the detailing on the head. It’s chock full of details, and, most impressively, features lightpiping to keep that single eye constantly bright. So, where does the G1-inspiration hit? Well, like Magnus, Shockwave is at his core a Voyager-sized figure, with extra attachments meant to bump him up to the Leader size. While Magnus’ armor transforms him into an almost completely different figure, Shockwave’s extra parts just enhance the base figure. You can remove the shoulers/extra arms, the backpack, and the “shoes”, and you’re left with a figure that’s a rather spot-on recreation of the original Shockwave. The resultant figure is a lot more basic, and will slot right in with Voyager-sized figures such as Optimus. The extra armored parts can then be re-formatted into a goblin glider-looking thing, so they aren’t just sitting in a pile in a corner, like Magnus’ are when he’s stripped down. Because of this, I find myself most drawn to this configuration for the character. Of course, the distinction between these two modes is far less drastic than it was on Magnus, meaning switching between them is also a far simpler process.
From his stripped down robot mode, you can transform Shockwave into his next alt-mode. Like his leader Megatron, Shockwave’s G1 toy transformed into a gun. With current safety standards, this is less feasible in a modern market, and would result in detrimental changes to the entire figure. So, Shockwave does *not* turn into a gun, but is rather a Cybertronian battle cruiser of some sort. In his stripped down form, this cruiser looks vaguely like a submarine, I suppose. Oh drat, I seem to have left it flipped over for my photo. Well, would you look at that, it seems to look vaguely gun-shaped when flipped over. That’s crazy. Certainly, this is just a coincidence, since Shockwave *doesn’t* turn into a gun. If, by chance, someone were to try and use this as a gun, I would note that the handle does seem kind of small for the average collector’s hands. But they definitely wouldn’t be using it as a gun. Because it’s not. It’s a submarine–no, sorry, Cybertronian battle cruiser. For his next mode, you can add the various armor pieces into the mix, which gives the build some wings, thrusters, and more pronounced front end, all of which make for a more distinctly battle cruiser-looking shape. It’s actually a pretty cool design in its own right, and of the three I’ve looked at so far, this one does seem to have the alt-mode that most fully embraces the Cybertronian vehicle aesthetic. Shockwave lacks any addition weaponry, but given the ability of the armor to go into the drone/glider configuration, he still feels decently armed.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
This one is once again Max’s fault, but I’m willing to give him a little more of a pass. After I agreed to pick up his Ultra Magnus, he also found Shockwave elsewhere. In this particular instance, he said he was prepared to take the second Shockwave, but I was, at this point, starting to feel a little more committed to the idea of grabbing a Shockwave of my own. I don’t have quite the connection to Shockwave that I do to Magnus, and of the two, Magnus is undoubtedly my favorite. I feel like he warrants the Leader Class treatment a bit more than Shockwave. Shockwave definitely feels more like a more basic figure with some extras thrown in than a full-fledged higher tier offering. That being said, there’s still a lot more to this figure than there would be at the Voyager price-point, and I don’t feel like he was overpriced. He may be my third favorite of the three I have from this line, but that’s not a shot at him in the slightest.