Thursday, 16 March 2017

Titans Return Quake with Chasm

Quake with Chasm

Hardhead & Skullsmasher appeared in Titans Return Wave alongside Blurr & Scourge. These two later toys were immediately remoulded in Wave 2 as Chromedome & Highbrow respectively and have also been used to make Brainstorm, Getaway/Breakaway & Nautica (Blurr) and Windblade (Scourge). But Hardhead & Skullsmasher have had to wait till Titans Return Wave 4 for their first reuse and then it's as a repaint, with a new face.

When The Transmissions Podcast rumoured a new Titans Return version of Perceptor, I could see that toy as a Hardhead remould due to the similarity of cannons over their right shoulder. However Titans Return Perceptor got it's own new deluxe Microscope toy and the Podcast very quickly broadcast new rumours rumours that Hardhead will be repainted/remoulded into Quake. Quake's existence was later all but confirmed on August 10th 2016 by Computer Listings but In Hand Images surfaced on 6th of January 2017 and he was sold at a Hasbro Asia event in Taiwan on 8th January long before his official Hasbro US reveal at Toy Fair 2017 on February 18th by which point I had mine here along with the other Wave 4 toys.

The original Quake has long been a favourite amongst the dual Targetmasters ever since I learnt you could substitute any Dual Targetmaster for the gun barrel. But the like is very much based on that gimmick. Without that he's a tank whose turret doesn't turn, barrel doesn't raise and who oddly resembles Optimus Prime in robot mode with a double windowed chest. Some already moulded detail on the Hardhead body has been used to cleverly impersonate the chest windows, the colours are dead right with a blue chest, grey arms & burgundy legs and the new head piece is superb. But I don't feel the robot suits Quake otherwise as I don't really associate him with having a huge shoulder cannon. That's more Perceptor or G2 Megatron.

Colour swaps: In general green turns Burgundy, except for the hands, gun & Titanmaster limbs which, like the dark grey, turn pale grey. The Titanmaster chest, clip and robot chest panel are blue while the gun, upper legs and some body parts are black. Clear orange becomes clear blue. His Titanmaster is called Chasm, a new name. I'm wondering why neither of his Targetmaster names Tiptop or Heater were used?

Transforming to tank mode and there's problems. Quake was previously a traditional tank albeit, as I've said, one who couldn't turn his turret or raise his gun. Hardhead has no turret instead having a side mounted cannon with accompanying cockpit. It's quite a dramatic shift in form.

I think the Titans Return Quake is a great repaint that looks fab. I'm just not sure it's really Quake! You almost wonder if he would have been better as a Combiner Wars Brawl repaint to go with Spinister & Needlenose from Transformers Subscription Service 4.0.

Future Repaints

If the gun on the side of Hardhead was replaced with a missile then this toy would make a great Stalker, Machine Wars Soundwave or Transformers Universe Soundwave

Since we've gone done the missile launcher route how about a new version of 1988's Doubledealer? The Headmaster gimmick, as with Breakaway/Getaway & Optimus Prime, would translate well to a Titanmaster. Then there's Cybertron Defence Red Alert, and repaints thereof ..... which effectively brings us back to Perceptor, which I'd still like to see this toy turned into!

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