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Series: Prime Beast Hunters
Allegiance: Decepticon
Categories: Voyager
Year: 2013

The cunning and brutal Decepticon scientist Shockwave plans to clone an unstoppable Predacon army!

Robot Mode: Certain visual characteristics have to apply when you’re bringing out a toy called Shockwave. Face consisting of but a single cyclopean eye? Check. Mostly purple paint job? Check. Big chest window? Check. Huge gun on one arm with the optional connecting cord / power line to the back? Check and check. So yes, ladies and gentlemen, this is without a doubt a Shockwave figure right here.

Now the last Shockwave we saw was the Fall of Cybertron version, who was small even for a Deluxe and pretty skinny. Not so this Shockwave here. He's big, he's beefy, and he looks as mean as they come. His articulation is standard, meaning quite good, but there is one thing you need to watch out for: the upper arm swivel on his left arm is pretty loose and tends to pop off, which seems to be a general problem with this mold. It pops back on just as easily, but you need to watch it. Otherwise, no stability issues or anything.

Shockwave's main gimmick is the big cannon on his left arm. Pushing the lever on his upper arm causes the two halves of the gun to slide open and rotate around a red central shaft, which looks awesome. It's hard to capture on photo, but I hope I managed. The cannon arm is connected to Shockwave's back by one of the tank treads of his vehicle mode, which is made of black rubber. Side note: the other tank tread, which doesn't detach or anything, is also made of black rubber. A very nice detail.

So bottom line: this is by far the best Shockwave robot we've seen since the original one. The weak left arm aside there is nothing worth complaining about here, he just looks awesome and the gun gimmick is one of the coolest I've seen in a good long while, too. So two thumbs up for the robot mode. Oh, and lest I forget: there are some red beast armour parts he can apply to his shoulder and chest. I'm leaving them off, but they're in there, just so you know.

Alternate Mode: For all that he’s one of the coolest and most awesome-looking robots in Transformer history through all his various incarnations, Shockwave has been annoyingly consistent in one other regard, too: His alternate modes suck. Yes, the original one became a cool space gun, but ever since Shockwave has been laden with strange hybrid modes that tried to keep the gun appearance without actually being a gun, giving us an assortment of strange science-fiction style artillery things that flew and/or rolled on tank treads. Case in point: Prime Shockwave’s alternate mode, a strange tank thing with wheels in front, tank treads out back, the big gun on top, and still looking to all the world like a strangely contorted robot.

The good parts: it looks pretty much exactly like the vehicle we’ve seen Shockwave transform into on the TV screen and... yeah, that’s pretty much it. The gun gimmick remains fully functional here, of course, and you can apply the Beast Hunter armour parts, too, if you’re so inclined. Otherwise I can only say: leave Shockwave in robot mode.

Remarks: Shockwave appeared in a flashback sequence in an episode of Prime's second season before joining the regular cast at the beginning of the third one. He's once again the Decepticons' resident mad scientist (as he's been in most of the comics, though never before on TV, I believe) and the creator of the Predacons, too. He's also pretty badass, making Starscream shake in his high-heeled boots and taking down Wheeljack and Bulkhead with a single shot after jumping down the entire length of a very, very tall Decepticon fortress. He'll probably play an even bigger role soon when the Predacons really get going in Prime's third season, but that remains to be seen.

As for the toy, well, despite some shortcomings such as the weak shoulder and the pretty crappy alternate mode, Shockwave is a clear recommendation. He's got a very cool robot mode, he's one of the main bad guys of the Prime TV series, and he's Shockwave. So everyone who found Generations Shockwave too short and skinny, well, here you will get the massive powerhouse you wanted. So bottom line: go and buy Shockwave! Do it now!

Rating: A-
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