"Cyberverse: Power of the Spark" Spark Armor Shockwave Toy Review
Release Date: September 2019
Price Point: $14.99 (Varies by retailer)
Retailer: General Release (Amazon, Entertainment Earth, Target, Walmart etc.)
Accessories: Hand blaster, Cable, Solar Shot/Armor
*Images and text below from Entertainment Earth:
Get ready for action with the Transformers Cyberverse Spark Armor Battle! Imagine recreating awesome Cyberverse battles with Transformers Cyberverse Spark Armor Solar Shot Shockwave figure that powers-up with the Spark Armor featured on the animated series! All Battle Class Spark Armor works with other Battle Class figures so kids can interchange and power up in fun new ways. Explore the incredible new powers of each character while bringing the epic adventures of Cyberverse to life. Plastic Shockwave robot stands about 5-inches tall.
The "Power of the Spark" Spark Armor packaging is a bit of a throwback. In the "Robots in Disguise" line from a few years ago, the "Crash Combiners" featured packaging that emphasized the combination of two characters. In this case, the emphasis on the packaging is between a character and their armor. The packaging uses the same "Cyberverse" design as last year's figures including the vertical "Transformers" logo, a yellow and blue background with the "Cyberverse" logo prominent in the middle. Where this packaging borrows inspiration from the "Crash Combiners" is the character art. On the left side of the box is Shockwave's art, then in the middle on the front is Shockwave combined with Solar Shot. On either side of the combined form are arrows with the names "Shockwave" and "Solar Shot".
The back of the box shows Shockwave separate and combined with his armor. The transformation is called out as a 13 step transform. The cosells are the Spark Armor versions of Ratchet, Prowl and Starscream.
Shockwave's accessories are several parts which come together to form a satellite. Sure, it makes perfect sense for a character in charge of military operations to have a satellite handy, but this form is also a fun callback to Superlink Laserwave (aka Energon Shockblast) who was inspired by G1 Shockwave and transformed into a satellite! I love fun Easter Eggs like this.
The satellite is pretty neat looking. The front has a radar dish on it, the middle section has some panels, vents and other "machinery" details and then the back section has four solar panels in a cross pattern with two thrusters in the back. The sculpting on this piece is great. I appreciate how much line detail was integrated into portions like the solar panels.
The satellite is made up of three plastic colors: metallic purple, pink and dark grey. The grey and purple are solid plastic, but for safety reasons the pink parts are soft, rubbery plastic. There are no painted details on this accessory.
You can break apart the pieces of the satellite to form accessories for Shockwave (beyond forming his armor). The solar panels for instance could be a shield or blade weapon that you attach to his arms. The thrusters can be a blaster (it features a 5mm peg on the bottom) and the satellite dish also features a 5mm peg, allowing it to be held as a weapon in Shockwave's fists. The middle section is only really useful as armor. This is a lot of accessorizing you can extract out of a satellite and I think it is super fun. In a surprise move, the satellite dish has a point in the front that is compatible with the Blast Effects from Siege. Even better? The thrusters in the back are also Blast Effect compatible, adding another level of play if you have some Siege Battle Masters handy!
Shockwave also includes two other accessories. One is a pink, rubbery cable with a 5mm peg on each end. this allows you to attach it to his back, then lead it to his arm, a direct callback to G1 Shockwave. His other accessory is a surprise: the blaster on his forearm! In most versions of Shockwave, one arm is a "blaster arm" instead of a hand. Here, the blaster actually detaches to reveal another fist! This allows you to attach that blaster to other parts of the figure.
There's a whole lot of play value with these accessories and for a line that is gimmick focused, that's aces in my book.
This version of Shockwave uses the same aesthetics as the Warrior and Ultra Class versions released earlier in the Cyberverse toy line. The design is heavily based on his G1 counterpart. This includes key design elements such as having a hex shaped head with one eye and panels on the sides that look like ears. It also includes him having a chest window and legs that look like the handle grips on a blaster. This Shockwave figure has all that and more. His head features a small notch over the eye that makes him look extra mean and he has lines running through different parts of his body that look like they are glowing with energy (thanks to pink paint inside of them). From a sculpting standpoint the designers did a fantastic job with this figure.
Shockwave is cast in metallic purple and dark grey plastic. The soft rubbery plastic that forms his cable is bright pink plastic. Pink paint is used on the chest and arms to fill in detailing that makes him look like he is glowing with energy. Silver is used for detailing on the head, torso and legs. His eye is painted yellow. From a color standpoint, given the size scale I am very impressed with this deco. It is beautiful and very eye catching.
There are fourteen points of articulation on this figure. Unfortunately this class of figures tends to lack waist and head articulation and Shockwave is no exception. Still, he has a good range of motion ont he arms and legs. Shockwave has eight 5mm ports in this form, allowing you to attach Spark Armor pieces and weapons. Since this is compatible with other weapons (ranging from Energon to Siege) there is a lot of potential play value here. As mentioned above, Shockwave has a "blaster arm" accessory that he holds on to with one of his hands, but you can pop it off to reveal two hands, a rarity among Shockwave figures.
Transformation to Vehicle Mode:
- Detach the cable and blaster accessories and set them aside for now.
- Swing the panel on the back out, swing the head into the chest.
- Swing the chest up.
- Swing the back cover back into place.
- Raise the arms up, then bend them at the elbows and swivel them around to form the front legs of the vehicle.
- Rotate each robot leg around, then bend them at the knees to form the rear legs.
- Attach the blaster arm accessory to the back panel piece.
- Attach one end of the cable to the blaster weapon on top and the other end to one of the 5mm ports on the robot shoulders.
Shockwave's vehicle mode in Cyberverse is a "spider tank". Basically a walking artillery unit, which fits in with the theme of a character whose G1 alt mode was a giant space gun. I like this as an alt-mode for him. There is a level of creepiness to the look of the vehicle that suits the character. One can easily imagine him stomping across the battlefield, blasting away as he directs strategy to his fellow Decepticons.
Everything seen in this form was visible in robot mode, so there are no deco surprises.
Since most of this mode relies on Shockwave's robot mode limbs, he retains all his robot mode articulation. Even better, the forearms in front still allow you to attach 5mm weapons so you can give him extra firepower in this mode.
Combination with Spark Armor
- Start with Shockwave in robot mode.
- Detach the arm blaster and cable and set them aside for now.
- Separate all the accessory pieces if combined as the satellite.
- Take the middle section of the satellite and swing the purple panel up and back. Attach this to Shockwave over the head, using the ports near his shoulders to connect the accessory.
- Swing the chest panel on the armor down and tab it into the slots on the chest.
- Attach the blaster arm to the left fist.
- Attach the rocket boosters from the satellite to the side of the left arm.
- Attach the solar panels to the back panel.
- Attach one end of the cable to the boosters/weapon on the left arm. Attach the other end to the solar panels on the back.
- Attach the satellite dish section to the right fist.
Of all the various Spark Armor combinations in this "Battle Class" of figures, I think this is my absolute favorite thus far. From a thematic standpoint, having a pile of satellite parts attached to Shockwave as weapons is a fun callback to Energon/Superlink and they look great. The solar panels on his back look like he is wearing some type of winged flight pack. The extra weapons on his arms give him a more powerful appearance and the helmet over his head looks almost like a crown, hinting at his high position in Decepticon ranks.
No articulation is lost in this mode, though because of the solar panels on the back his arm articulation is hampered slightly. The design of this figure allows you to continue to add parts to this figure on the arms and legs, offering some fun play potential in this form.
Shockwave appears to be a winner in Cyberverse. So far all the other versions of him have impressed me and this one is no exception. The figure looks great with fun play value and serves as a callback to two different versions of the character. Highly recommended!
- Excellent sculpt.
- Beautiful deco.
- Great play value.
- Good articulation for the size class.
- Fun callback to Energon and G1 Shockblast/Shockwave figures.
- Lacks head and waist articulation.
- The soft plastic may turn some fans off.