Depth Charge - Beast Wars Figure

On the BW show, Depth Charge was one of the more interesting characters to come along. Blunt, intense, and driven by an urge to destroy Rampage at any cost, he was a considerable departure from the other goody goody Maximals.

Beast Mode
This is easily one of the best beast modes Hasbro's ever produced, right up there with TM2 Megatron. A majestic manta ray or devilfish, the largest of all rays and one of the most amazing creatures to inhabit the sea. This particular devilfish measures a whopping 40 cm (16") from horns to tail, with a wingspan of 33 cm(13"). Main colours are blue, silver, and purple, with yellow accents, sea green airbrushing underneath, and silver vac metal. DC also has a couple of golden Maximal insignias emblazoned on the underside of his wings. The detailing on the wings is particularly attractive, mechanical on top and more organic underneath. I also like how the large vac metal panel on his head features some airbrushed blue. DC's name is printed in purple letters on this panel, and his rub symbol is located on the underside.

DC has six points of articulation in this mode. His tail can move in two places, as can each wing, very realistically I might add. The whole devilfish holds together very well, with nothing popping out of place. DC's main feature is a built-in disk launcher. Press down repeatedly on the small dorsal fin, and seven yellow disks fly out of his mouth. The disks reload by opening up the aforementioned panel on his head. Nothing like a toy that spits chunks, eh? The disks admittedly don't travel a good distance, but it's still a neat feature. And then there's DC's little buddy, the "Sharkshooter" as I like to call it. The Sharkshooter is a blue, green, and silver missile launcher designed to looks like a shark. Pressing the gray fins on its sides shoots two missiles about a meter or so. The Sharkshooter can attach to the underside of DC, but sometimes falls off if handled too roughly. Nor can it shoot while attached to DC like on the show.

Vehicle Mode
Compared to the tank mode of his counterpart, Rampage, DC's flight mode is nothing to write home about. His devilfish wings simply unlatch and spread out to act as flight fins. This also exposes the jet thrusters underneath. I'd have preferred a more involved third mode personally. Still, it's fun to set up a bunch of Preds on a floor or table and then have DC swoop down and strafe 'em with his power pizzas.

DC's transformation is very complex, involving the entire front of his head swinging down and rotating around to form the robot hips and legs. His robot fists swing out of his wrists in the same manner as TM Optimus Primal's. I managed to transform him the first time without using the instructions, but it took me awhile to get him back into devilfish mode again.

Robot Mode
DC stands 18 cm (7.1 inches) at the head, and his wings add more to that height. Again, this is one of the best robot modes ever, and a dead ringer for the character on the show. His robot head is blue with yellow and green, and has an intense look in its orange eyes. A curved streak on his face plate suggests a grimacing mouth, but if you've watched the show, you know that DC doesn't have a mouth. His wings can fold over his sides to act as defensive shielding, again like on the show. Too bad they can't wrap all the way over his chest, since that would be cool. I also like how his devilfish horns end up on his knees. "Hey, Rampage, look up. *crack!* How'd that feel, sucker?" DC is articulated at the head, shoulders (two joints), upper arms, elbows, hips, knees (two joints), and ankles. He also has what could be considered a waist joint except; 1) it's too far up on his body; 2) his wings hinder its movement. The disk launcher works just as well in this mode.

Unfortunately, DC is tainted by the fact that his trigger mechanism sticks out several inches behind his body. So while from the front, DC looks awesome, from the side he looks pretty awkward. It also means that he takes up extra space in your collection. The larger part of his tail ends up touching the ground, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Rather, it can act as a third leg for supporting DC in action poses. It can also function as a carrying handle. The end of his tail detaches to form a handheld cudgel with a diamond-shaped blade on the end. Almost looks like a wand. The Sharkshooter fits into either of his fists, but due to the fin on its underside, DC can't hold it straight. Bummer.

Suspsy Sez: Depth Charge is one of the best Ultras to be produced. The devilfish mode is a nice counterpart to Rampage's crab mode, and it looks and plays awesome. The disk launcher is a neat gimmick, as is the Sharkshooter. Transformation is reasonably complex for an Ultra. Robot mode looks great, but the trigger mechanism brings it down somewhat. In all, a worthy addition to any TF collection. 9/10


"Comin' atcha, X." -Depth Charge

DateFebruary 27th 2002  
Score 9 stars (9 out of 10)  

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