With the Transforming Expectations Kickstarter about to wrap-up (and being just a few dollars shy of being funded), I figured it was as good a time as any to toss a Third Party Transformers review out there. Assisting me today will be one of the very best third party products to come out… like, ever (so far?)… Fans Toys: Quake Wave.
I didn’t jump on Quake Wave at first. That’s mostly because of the character he’s homaging. While Shockwave is a fairly important character in the Transformers mythos, he’s never been one of my favorites. I hardly even remember the original toy back in the day (my parents bought me Autobots like 5 to 1, which I think is what I wanted) and nothing in the cartoon about him really sticks out to me.
Which is silly, because he did cool stuff. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to appreciate Shockwave quite a bit – his cold logic, the seeming ease he would have in taking over everything, defeating Autobots & Deceptions alike. And he has one of my favorite G.I. Joe’s name – in fact, both he and that fave Joe even suffered the indignity of “Shockblast” together too. Oh, and I’ve accepted the purple. Geez.
But this isn’t Shockwave right? This is Quake Wave. Yep. And why would I buy this Quake Wave? Well, I’ll be honest. He was just too well made to pass up. Most Third Party toys are done in scales I “shouldn’t” be collecting. I told myself when I made a deal with myself to embrace the second coming of the Masterpiece line that I wouldn’t buy smaller Transformers. The idea being that skipping on 5-10 of those would easily net me the funds for one MP. That almost worked, but the Third Parties got me good. I have more 3rd party offerings best sized to go with the Classics line than I care to admit. And then Quake Wave comes along – he’s basically a Third Party Masterpiece offering. But even better, he lives up to the name Masterpiece.
Scale is a bit of a joke in TF collecting, so I’m not sure how big Shockwave should be compared to Optimus, but this toy is basically the same size as the new MP Optimus, and slightly taller than the MP Soundwave. That’s perfectly for me. The sculpting is top notch, with some detail added to keep things interesting at this scale, but it’s thankfully not overcrowded. The plastic quality feels fantastic and the use of die-cast metal on the feet and sides of the legs (the handle’s grip) is a nice touch. I think the nicest thing I can say about this figure is that if I let some play with my MPs, they wouldn’t suspect that Quake Wave was produced any differently than the others.
Unlike most early Transformers, the original Shockwave wasn’t from a larger line, but rather a unique toy, a transforming laser gun called Astro Magnum. When he was included in Transformers, Shockwave stood out as one of the most articulated figures in the line. Quake Wave lives up to that ideal with a ton of great articulation that serves him well as a MP fill-in. He has a ball-jointed neck, two hinges & a swivel in the shoulders to simulate a ball-joint, double-hinged elbows, waist swivel, ball-jointed hips, thigh swivel, swivel/hinge knees, two hinges in the ankle to simulate a ball-joint, and hinged toes. His one good hand features a (limited) ball-jointed wrist and individually articulated fingers. He gets into just about any pose I’d like except for deep crouches. Continue to Page 2…