Transformers Review: Shockwave (Superlink Leader)


Intro:
            Shockwave, also known as Tidal Wave in the English continuity – both in Transformers: Armada & Energon was one of those things that I managed to squander the chances of getting them.
            It was way back in 2004-5 when I first saw this figure, albeit the Hasbro version, in Metrojaya Pelangi Mall. in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, but I couldn’t get him due to the lack of monetary supplies. By the time when I did have the chance, unsurprisingly, he was gone.
            I never saw Tidal Wave/ Shockwave ever again since then, until last year at Robot Master, Malacca. Almost immediately, the desire to fulfill the missed opportunity resurfaced. However, I would go on to leave him cold on the shelf for the next 1 to 2 years (mostly due to better options available), until I finally got him last week.
            Surprisingly, being one of those characters that were difficult to come by, even back then, he was able to remain on the shelf for quite some time. Probably it was destined to be mine.
            Anyways, based on the bios, Shockwave is a very powerful and deadly Decepticon warrior. Back in the Armada series, Tidal Wave played the part of a deadly warrior, able to combine with Megatron as a power-up tool for the latter. His size made him intimidating to foes and allies alike. However, in the Energon/ Superlink, he was reduced to nothing more than a comic relief – what a waste of a good character.
            In the Energon/Superlink series, Tidal Wave would go on and met his maker, before returning with a new and slicker body, in the form of Shockblast (Mirage, for those in the English continuity).

Alternate Mode:
            One word sums up his alternate mode – unique. Not quite unlike the G1 Reflector, which took 3 robots to form a camera, Shockwave actually separates into 3 different parts – a battle carrier ship, some sort of a battle gunner boat and a modern-looking army personnel transport boat.
Battle Carrier Ship
Battle Gunner Boat
Transport Boat
            Well, like most of the alternate modes in the Energon/ Superlink, it does take quite an imagination to define what they are. Personally, I like the battle carrier, as well as the army transport.
            Since this is re-colored version of the Armada figure, he inherits all of its perks and features, one of which includes the ability to combine with Armada Megatron. This ability was naturally never shown in the Superlink/ Energon series. 
The Dark Fleet
            But that’s not all, boys and girls; these three vehicles can combine and form a larger super vehicle called – The Dark Fleet. This mode was not some half thought alternate mode, thankfully, but was rather prominently depicted in the series itself.
            The vehicle is massive – stretching to about 1 feet and ½ inches long. This mode literally looks like some huge futuristic battle carrier to me, but in the series, Shockwave was depicted as being able to fly, so I guess this mode might not be a battle carrier boat after all, but rather a battle carrier flying ship.
            The set comes with his partner Minicon, Ramjet, and he is literally one of the worst Minicons I’ve seen. The robot mode is just too darn weak, and it sure doesn’t deserve even a column for him. However, you do need him (or any other Minicon for that matter) to activate his gimmick, which is to move the various gun turrets on the ship. 

            By the way, just in case if you’re wondering, yes, Shockwave do have wheels at the bottom to allow movements on a flat table.
            Overall, wicked alternate mode(s).

Robot Mode:
            The robot mode is deliciously massive – 11.5-inches tall, about 1 ½-inches away from Cybertron Metroplex. 
 
            He is mostly painted in white and grey, with many translucent green parts. 
            Articulation-wise, like most of the figures from this line, they have much better articulations than G1, but not as good as say Generations line. The summary of joints is as follows: he has no head articulation; the shoulders and hips consist of ratcheting universal joints; ratcheting elbow joints for both the rotation and bending; the thumbs hinges; ratcheting waist joint; the knees swing in an awkward direction, mostly due to transformation; and finally, the toe and heel flaps hinges. 
From left: Shockwave and Primus
From left: Shockwave and Sixshot
            Size comparisons – he is typically taller than Sixshot, who is not a figure himself, but smaller than Cybertron Metroplex. Compared to his reformatted self – Mirage, he is huge.
From left: Shockwave and Mirage
            The set also comes with an instruction manual, data card and a Superlink comic in Japanese.  
            Overall, cool robot mode.

Overall:
He was one of those figures from the past that I really wanted, but when the opportunity did eventually present itself, it took me quite some time to land him. The figure is deliciously huge and a character of this stature should really have better character depiction, at least as how he was depicted in the Armada series, rather than a mere comic relief.
If I were an Autobot, I could totally understand why it is impeccable that we should regroup and fight for another day when Shockwave/ Tidal Wave arrive at the battle site.
Recommended.

            Final verdict: 8.5/10.

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