Shockwave (Transformers)

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Shockwave is the name of eight fictional characters from the Transformers series. The first Shockwave was a Decepticon military operations commander who turned into a giant ray-gun. For trademark reasons, he is also sometimes called Shockblast. First released in 1985, other characters named Shockwave or Shockblast have also been released in the Transformers series.

Transformers: Armada

The Decepticon character called Tidal Wave in the English version of the Armada series was named Shockwave in the Japanese version.

Transformers: Energon

Transformers character
Energon Shockblast toy
Name Shockblast
Japanese name Laserwave
Series Transformers: Energon
English voice actor Brian Drummond
Japanese voice actor Nobutoshi Kanna
Alternate modes Cybertronian Tank/Satellite
Function Satellite Staff
Gender Male
Motto "I see you."
Sub-group Ultra Vehicles, Triple Changers

Although the assorted Transformers series which followed the original often paid homage to many popular characters by naming new characters after them, or sculpting them to share their likeness, Shockwave was without a homage in the US for over a decade—it would not be until the midst of 2004's Transformers: Energon line that Shockwave received this honor in the form of Shockblast. Hasbro had since lost the trademark to the name "Shockwave" to Lanard Toys (as noted above), and compensated as best they could through use of this altered name. As previously noted, in Japan, Takara still retained the rights to their original name, hence there, Shockblast was still named Laserwave.

Hugely egotistical, cold, ruthless, and a genius, Shockblast is sometimes loyal to Megatron but occasionally acts like Starscream and seeks to overthrow his master. Shockblast's capacity for ruthlessness exceeds even that of Megatron which makes his personality a cross between his leaders and Starscream's. However despite that, Starscream himself even under Megatron's control seems to respect Shockblast. The power-hungry Shockblast transforms into an orbital Satellite and a ground-based assault vehicle (although in the animated series, he only transformed into the former). He has an unspecified history with Tidal Wave, who distrusts him (the Japanese dub of the series indicated that this was because Shockblast was part of Tidal Wave's platoon, and turned on his fellow Decepticons after the Autobots were defeated).

Animated series

Considered to be one of the most dangerous and deadly Decepticons, Shockblast was captured by the Autobots and imprisoned on Cybertron. In the Earth year 2020, when Megatron attacked Cybertron with Unicron, he instructed some Decepticon agents on the planet to liberate Shockblast. Shockblast, however, had already begun to effect his own escape amidst the chaos Megatron's attack was causing, and broke free of his restraints just as a Decepticon agent arrived at his cell, and was killed by Shockblast simply because he had no need of him. In making his escape, Shockblast killed one of his guards, Padlock, causing his other jailer, Wing Dagger, to swear revenge.

Shockblast immediately rankled under Megatron's leadership, and was attacked by Wing Dagger when he led a new attack on Cybertron. Tidal Wave was ordered to aid him, but Shockblast had already collapsed an Energon Tower and dragged Wing Dagger under it, killing him, and accidentally injuring Tidal Wave. Both victims were soon reborn, however - Tidal Wave as Mirage, and Wing Dagger as the powerful Wing Saber. While Wing Saber merged with Optimus Prime as the Autobots ventured into Unicron, Shockblast defied Megatron's orders, lying and claiming he was under attack while sneaking off and preparing to make a power play. When Megatron faced off against Optimus Prime in the middle of an Energon reaction that had torn a fissure in space, Shockblast leaped into the middle, only to be hit by a chunk of debris and sent spiraling through the fissure, into a new region of space where Alpha Q had recreated the planets destroyed by Unicron.

Separated from the other Decepticons, Shockblast was confronted by the Autobots on Iron Planet and was defeated and captured by Wing Saber, and chained and guarded by Inferno. Megatron and the other Decepticons soon arrived to rescue him and Megatron warned him of the price of defiance. This did not stop Shockblast from attempting to seize power again, however - and in his next move, he succeeded, seating himself in Megatron's throne within Unicron, planning to take the chaos-bringer's power for his own. However, he got more power than he bargained for, as Unicron's essence possessed him, warping his body and driving him into an insane rage. Battling with Optimus Prime on Blizzard Planet, Shockblast was destroyed when Unicron's massive arm plunged down through the planet's atmosphere and crushed him, completely extinguishing his Spark.

Shockblast's place in the Decepticons was soon filled by his own younger and equally treacherous brother, Six Shot.

Pack-in mini-comics

Shockblast would make his only comics appearance in the third promotional mini-comic packaged with Transformers: Energon toys. When Slugslinger and Sharkticon attempted to break into an Autobot island facility as Shockblast scrambled the security system with an electromagnetic pulse from orbit, they were caught and battled with Bulkhead and Towline who had some unexpected help—Omega Supreme, who soundly defeated all the Decepticons present.

The name of Shockwave would make an unexpected reappearance in the fourth mini-comic, as one of Megatron's troops. On Earth Megatron, with the aid of Snowcat, Shockwave, Mirage and Demolisher, cornered Optimus Prime and a wounded Hot Shot. Optimus nobly refused to give up. The other Autobot reinforcements were over ten minutes away and the two Autobots looked done for when Wing Saber arrived. Making a powerlinx link with Optimus Prime, Prime soundly defeated all the Decepticons, even Megatron, and forced them to flee. The Autobots then arrived and Optimus thanked Wing Saber for his help.


  • Energon Ultra Shockblast (2004)
Designed mainly to be a visual homage to the original Shockwave, the Shockblast figure is designed for its robot mode – it features Shockwave's traditional one-eyed head, and a large gun-barrel arm. Consequently, however, its two vehicle modes are something of an ad-hoc jumble of parts. By sliding forward the level on his gun-arm in any mode, the panels on the gun fan out, exposing gold-chromed solar-panel-like decals beneath, and the arm launches a missile with an electronic blasting sound effect.[1][2]
The Shockblast mold was later recolored into his brother, Six Shot.


Transformers character
Dark of the Moon Shockwave promo
Name Shockwave
Series Transformers: Dark of the Moon
English voice actor Frank Welker
Daniel Riordan (2007 video game)
Isaac C. Singleton, Jr. (2011 video game)
Japanese voice actor Jirō Saitō
First appearance Transformers: The Game
Alternate modes Gun turret and AH-64 Apache helicoptor (2007 game), Cybertronian self propelling cannon(DOTM toyline)
Function Scientist / Assassin
Gender Male
Motto "Logic brings all things to order."
Rank 8
Sub-group Triple Changers, Voyagers

According to an interview with producer Tom DeSanto published in issue #15 of the Transformers Collectors Club Magazine, the original lineup pitched for the Decepticons in the live action Transformers film was Megatron, Starscream, Soundwave, Ravage, Laserbeak, Rumble, Skywarp and Shockwave. However, Shockwave was left out of the original film as the lineup eventually ended up as Megatron, Starscream, Scorponok, Frenzy, Barricade, Bonecrusher, Blackout (who replaced Soundwave) and Brawl (misnamed Devastator).

He does appear in the third film, Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Actor David Warner was originally being considered for the role, but the part was ultimately given to Frank Welker, who also does the voice of Soundwave. This marked the second time that Shockwave was voiced by an actor who also voiced Megatron, The Joker and Batman, that Corey Burton had previously voiced all three. Bay commented before the movie's release that Shockwave was going to be portrayed as a "little bit more vicious" than Megatron. His armoury included a massive cannon, a shield and wrist blade, and during the film he commands a Cybertronian Driller which he acquired during the prequel comics.

Shockwave's design in the film retains most of his original features from the Generation 1 incarnation, most noticeably in his head design, arm cannon and color scheme.


Film concept art of Sentinel Prime by artist Josh Nizzi named the chatacter who would become Shockwave as "Blitzwing".[3]


In 2007 USA today polled people as to which Transformer they want to appear in the next Transformers film. Shockwave came in tied for fifth with Ultra Magnus.[4]

Bryan Alexander of the Chicago Sun Times rated Shockwave 3rd of the top 12 most sinister movie villains in film for summer of 2011, being topped only by the Red Skull and Lord Voldemort.[5]


Shockwave appears as a character in the book Transformers: Dark of the Moon The Junior Novel.[6]


IDW Publishing

Longarm and Salvage are rescuing human workers at an oil plant disaster in Dallian, China when the Decepticons Shockwave and Astrotrain crash to Earth. Shockwave leaves Astrotrain and observes a group of Decepticons working for Starscream as they confront the Autobots. He traces the radioactive trail left by Starscream's minion Divebomb back to Starscream's base in junkyard of the outskirts of Mexico City. After blasting his way past Ruination and Deadlift, Shockwave tells Starscream that Megatron requires his services. Shockwave then sends Starscream to recover the drone called Brains.[7]

He is responsible for the Tunguska event.


Shockwave is seen on the front page of a newspaper that is hanging from the pipe in the scene in Egypt where Devastator is trying to suck up The Twins.[8]

On June 10, 2010, Bay said to USA Today that Shockwave would appear in Transformers: Dark of the Moon.[9]

He appears in the beginning of the film when Optimus Prime went on a mission to Chernobyl with his ally human soldiers. They discovered a fuel cell from The Ark that had incredible radiation levels. At this moment Shockwave's Driller[10] appears and immediately begins destroying the base and killing soldiers in the process. It then proceeds to take the fuel and bursts out of the base with Optimus Prime following. The fight then takes to the land where the Driller knocks off Optimus' trailer, separating him from his weapons. However, Prime was still able to gain access to it after cutting off one of its tentacle-like limbs. At this moment Shockwave appears out of the beast saying "Optimus" but he quickly withdraws. He later appears during the final battle, where the Driller once again knocks over Optimus's trailer, and is fired at by the Wreckers so that the trailer could be retrieved. After noticing falling furniture from a building that has Sam and others in, he sends the Driller[11] to collapse the building holding Sam, Carly, Epps and other soldiers. After tipping the building over Optimus Prime flies in with his FlightTech and is able to kill the Driller, cutting off its main head by flying through the section that connects it to the body. Angered by what happened to his pet, Shockwave shoots at Optimus with a burst-missile - causing him to get tangled and stuck in wires on a crane. After the Wreckers free Optimus, the humans launch a coordinated assault on Shockwave. He is blinded by a parachute and the humans attack Shockwave at the same time, damaging his head causing his eye to dangle by its wires. Optimus then flies in who Shockwave fires at but Optimus dodges the shot and punches through Shockwave's torso using bladed knuckles and proceeds to kill him by ripping his eye out. Optimus then uses Shockwave's arm cannon to blast the space bridge control pillar, temporarily halting Cybertron from transporting into Earth's atmosphere.


Shockwave does appear, however, in the tie-in Transformers: The Game. He is a Triple Changer with a robot, gun turret and AH-64 Apache helicopter modes and is a boss for the Autobots later in the game, where he must fight Optimus Prime. In the game, Shockwave delays Optimus Prime from rescuing Bumblebee when Bumblebee is captured by Sector 7. Physically, he is taller than Optimus Prime. Shockwave, however, appears to submit to Starscream, instead of the other way around like his G1 incarnation. He also appears in the Autobot Cybertron mission in the console versions of the game.

In the PSP version of the game, he is a playable character. He first appears with partner Thundercracker while trying to protect Blackout and Scorponok in Qatar. He next appears in the Arctic dig site, where he, Thundercracker and fellow Decepticon Dreadwing, try to find Megatron. They first destroy the Autobot transmitter satellites, then go inside the site. They are also attacked by several drones. They do not find Megatron and realize there is a satellite about to launch. The Autobot drones decide to blow up the place, but Thundercracker and Shockwave make it out, leaving Dreadwing to perish in the explosion. Then they go to the launch site, attempting to transmit a signal in the satellite for Decepticon drones to approach them. Shockwave distracts the armed forces while Thundercracker places the signal. They succeed, and Shockwave is rescued by Thundercracker. Shockwave meets with Blackout and Scorponok, but does not find their army and they have not heard from Thundercracker (Unknown to them, Autobot Ironhide already killed Thundercracker and Autobots Hound and Trailbreaker disrupted the signal). At the end of the game, after the Autobots succeed in destroying most of the Decepticons and bringing peace to Earth, Shockwave and Starscream retreat to Cybertron. Starscream and Shockwave argue about leadership now that Megatron is dead. They decide to go to war, with players assuming the role of Starscream. Starscream successfully destroys Shockwave and his followers.

In the Nintendo DS versions of the game (both Autobots and Decepticons) features all Chopper vehicle modes that transform into a Bot complete with Shockwave's head.

Shockwave appears as the final boss in the Transformers: Dark of the Moon console game, set before the events of the film. Megatron sets out to free him from captivity in a Russian facility, destroying the cryo tanks keeping him frozen. Shockwave began to thaw as Optimus found him, and the Driller attacked until Shockwave was active. However he was still sluggish, and this proved to be an advantage to Optimus, who attacked the power coils on his back powering his cannon, forcing Shockwave to take cover in the Driller. After Optimus drove off the Driller again, Shockwave began fighting Optimus and several Autobot soldiers, taking the smaller robots with ease until Optimus used his flight-pack mode to finish the one-eyed Decepticon. Luckily for Shockwave, the Driller returned and whisked him away. Arriving in Africa where Megatron, Starscream and Soundwave were waiting. Megatron welcolmed back his best assassin, and ordered him to head to Chernobyl as part of Operation: Pillar.


  • Dark of the Moon Burger King Flip Out Shockwave (2011)
A BK Kids meal toy available at Burger King restaurants in the US. The toy consists of a detailed head that opens to reveal a small robot body, giving the overall figure a Bobblehead look. It also has a small flashlight that emits the Decepticon symbol at the push of a button.[12]
  • Dark of the Moon Voyager Class Shockwave (2011)
A new mold for Shockwave, which transforms into a Cybertronian self propelled cannon.[13]
  • Dark of the Moon Cyberverse Shockwave Fusion Tank (2011)
A gift set that includes Commander Class Shockwave and a Cybertronian tank that can transform into a mobile fortress or a fusion cannon.[14]
A black redeco of the individual version, this time with an unchanged Voyager Optimus. Released only in Canadian Costcos.
  • Dark of the Moon Streetside Bot Battle Toys R Us exclusive (2011)
A grey redeco of the Voyager this time not only with Optimus Prime, but with Bumblebee. As for the Autobots, they have been battle damaged, with different MechTech weapons. Optimus with the weapon of Laserbeak and Bumblebee with the weapon of Skids.


  1. "Shockblast (2004) - Decepticon". Retrieved 2010-04-27. 
  2. Toyfare magazine issue #80, April 2004
  4. 'Transformers' fans make some noise for Soundwave, By Anthony Breznican, USA TODAY, 7/23/2007
  5. Alexander, Bryan. "This summerБ─≥s 12 most sinister movie villains - Chicago Sun-Times". Retrieved 2011-07-06. 
  6. Michael Kelly (2011). Transformers: Dark of the Moon The Junior Novel. Ballantine Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. ISBN 978-0316186292. 
  7. John Barber (w), Carlos Magno (p), Aburtov and Graphiksslava (i). Transformers: Rising Storm 1 (February 2011), IDW Publishing
  8. "Shockwave cameo plus IMAX Edition Review". TransformersLiveActionMovieBlog. October 23, 2009. Retrieved October 23, 2009. 
  9. Breznican, Anthony (2010-06-11). "Next 'Transformers' is due for a switch". USA Today. 
  12. "Latest Toys". Club BK. Retrieved 2011-07-06. 
  13. 01:17 AM (2011-01-24). "''Dark of the Moon'' Shockwave Images". Retrieved 2011-07-06. 
  14. "Shockwave Fusion Tank". Retrieved 2011-07-20. 

External links