Release Date: February 2022
Price Point: $24.99 (depending on retailer)
Retailer: Walmart US Exclusive (with limited amounts sold via Hasbro Pulse)
Accessories: Missiles x 2, Beast Mode head/axe, Tail/claw weapon
Official Product Information in italics below from Walmart.com
(Re)start a vintage Beast Wars collection with this Transformers: Vintage Beast Wars Maximal Cybershark figure! Inspired by the classic 90s toy, this Maximal Cybershark toy is designed like the original version -- including figure styling, packaging, and art from the 1997 Beast Wars releases, plus classic tech specs and accessories.
Upon finding the enemy, Cybershark launches his robotic hammerhead to knock 'em out cold, then finishes the job in robot mode by filleting his prey with his switchblade tail! Maximal Cybershark figure comes with 4 accessories and converts from hammerhead shark to robot mode in 10 steps.
Clip out and save the on-box tech specs to share, then see how this figure stacks up against other heroic Maximals and evil Predacons (each sold separately). Transformers and all related characters are trademarks of Hasbro. Includes: figure, 4 accessories, and instructions. Figure scale: 5-inch Ages 8 and up. WARNING: CHOKING HAZARD - Small parts. Not for children under 3 years. © 2022 Hasbro. All rights reserved.
- RE-CREATION OF THE ORIGINAL BEAST WARS DESIGN: This vintage Beast Wars Maximal Cybershark figure is inspired by the original 1997 Beast Wars release.
- CLASSIC CONVERSION: Maximal Cybershark figure features classic Beast Wars conversion from hammerhead shark to robot mode in 10 steps
- VINTAGE WEAPON ACCESSORIES: Maximal Cybershark figure comes with spring-loaded head and tail features, plus 2 launchable torpedo accessories
- RETRO PACKAGING: Inspired by the original Beast Wars packaging in the "rocky bubble," this pack features the original Beast Wars logo, and character art
- TECH SPECS: Tech specs for Maximal Cybershark are included on the pack in the classic Beast Wars style fans know and love. Compare figures’ strength, speed, firepower, and more
In 2021 it had been over two decades since Beast Wars Transformers reshaped the Transformers world forever. In conjunction with the release of several new Beast Wars themed toys in Kingdom, Hasbro also reissued a set of Beast Wars toys from the 90's as Walmart exclusives in the United States (the figures would go to various other retailers outside the U.S.). One of these figures was the Deluxe Class Cybershark.
In 1997 the Beast Wars toy line had already proven its success and Kenner forged on with a large assortment of new sculpts and characters. Among them was a hammerhead shark Transformer known as Cybershark! In 2022, Hasbro reissued this figure as part of its Vintage Beast Wars line of figures exclusive to Wal-Mart (with limited quantities sold on Hasbro Pulse). I reviewed the original release of this figure decades ago so check that out for my original thoughts on the figure. This review will focus on the changes made to the figure for this release.
One of the most distincitve aspects of the marketing for Beast Wars was its distinctive packaging. This release seeks to replicate many key aspects of the original Beast Wars packaging. Cybershark is set in a plastic bubble glued to a card. This is especially notable since Hasbro is currently removing plastic from their packaging. The card has the iconic "scale" and "eye" background that was used for Beast Wars for many years. The front also features Cybershark's artwork, showing the Maximal charging into battle with his claw weapon. The sticker on the bubble has a sticker calling out "Deluxe Maximal Cybershark".
The back of the card is where things are a bit different. Hasbro made a valiant attempt to reproduce the original tech specs and instructions. They even use the "Kenner" logo from that era on the card. However, modern day requirements force everything printed on the card to be in multiple languages. Still, I appreciate the effort. The unfortunate part about these reissues is that the quality of the cardboard used for the backing cards is...not ideal. The cardboard is significantly thinner than the type used on the original cards. I've actually seen a case of these figured opened with the cards already slightly warped right out of the case. This is perhaps the biggest flaw in an otherwise valiant effort to reproduce the original cards.
Cybershark includes four accessories:
- Beast Mode Head/Hammer Weapon: The top of the beast mode head (the "hammer" portion) can be ejected using a spring loaded mechanism. This piece can then be held in Cybershark's fists to act as a melee weapon (presumably a hammer). This is wonderfully on the nose and kind of goofy and I think it's brilliant. This piece is made up of a beautiful grey-blue plastic with an off-white handle. Metallic green spots are painted on the head in the same pattern as the original Cybershark figure. The eyes on the sides are painted red.
- Missiles: Cybershark includes two identical missiles. Each has a hilarious design featuring a shark face on the front and even "gills" sculpted into the sides. These can be inserted into the launcher built into Cybershark's chest. They still fire pretty well though on my copy of this figure the springs seem slightly weaker than those on my original Cybershark. The missiles are made of the same off-white plastic found on Cybershark himself.
- Tail/Claw Weapon: The tail of the shark mode detaches and with a press of the button on top, a claw flips out. This weapon features a gorgeous spray pattern going from the off-white plastic to the blue color of the beast mode's main body. On top of that are more metallic green spots. The claw itself is painted silver and has a cool serrated pattern sculpted into it. The trigger mechanism on my copy of this weapon has no problems at all, with the claw quickly swinging out after you press the button.
Cybershark is a Hammerhead Shark in beast mode. The most distinctive feature is the head, featuring a "hammer" shape with eyes protruding out to the sides. He also has some of the smaller fins on the top and bottom of his main body just like the real life creature. The sculpt also features wonderful details like the sharp looking teeth and gills on the side. While this beast mode looks entirely organic, once you pop the beast mode head off you'll see a mechanical skull underneath with gorgeous sculpted details.
This mode is a combination of the blue-grey color, off-white plastic and the metallic green spots. The spray ops used for the gradient between the white and grey-blue is beautiful and something you rarely see in Transformers nowadays. The colors on this figure match beautifully with those on my original copy of Cybershark from 1997. I will say if I stare at the two I do see a very slight difference in the off-white color. My original may have yellowed a bit over the years, so the off-white looks like it has a tinge of yellow in it which the reissue does not.
Given that he's basically just a shell of a beast mode with two weapons slapped onto the front and back, Cybershark has no real articulation in this mode unless you count the fins on ball joints. That's fine by me however. He looks fantastic and I can easily imagine him swimming through the sea hunting Predacons!
For those wondering about plastic quality, holding my original Cybershark in one hand and this reissue in the other, I cannot really feel any texture difference in the plastic on the two. I weighed both figures and they both come out to 3.6 ounces with all accessories.
Transformation to Robot Mode:
- Using the button on top of the head, eject the head of the beast mode and set it aside for now.
- Detach the tail, press the button to swing out the claw and set it aside for now.
- Swing the sides of the beast mode out to reveal the robot head, arms and legs.
- Swing the beast mode legs and waist area up to the beast mode head, then swing that entire section down to form the torso and legs.
- Swing the robot feet up.
- Swing the robot arms out.
- The weapons can fit into the fists.
Cybershark's robot mode reflects the design philosophy of the Beast Wars brand, showing off both mechanical and organic looking parts meshed together to form a robot that looks more like a creature from a monster movie than your traditional blocky Transformers design. His head sculpt is wild compared to most you see nowadays. He has a mini "shark fin" on top (instead of a traditional crest), two narrow (and kind of evil) looking eyes and a mouth that is full of sharp teeth (thanks to a tampograph). The curves and angles on the head all look more organic than mechanical. The torso is perhaps the best piece showing off organic and mechanical parts in one. The top looks like shark skin/flesh and the lower part is mechanical. Add to that the sharp looking fin details on his shoulders and legs and this is one seriously cool looking figure.
The colors in this mode add in a reddish brown on the interior of the beast mode's side panels. His eyes are red, surrounded by black. For the most part the colors match up nicely with the original. That said, the off-white color on my copy of the original figure is a bit darker (more "yellow") than the off-white on the reissue. Whether this is due to yellowing or just a difference between the two colors used I am not 100% sure. There is one big difference between this figure and the original however. In 1997, Kenner reintroduced the heat sensitive "rubsign" which had been used for a couple years in Generation One. These however featured Maximal and Predacon symbols instead of Autobot and Decepticon symbols. Cybershark has a square clearly sculpted into the left side of the figure, but on this reissue there is no sticker. I am sad about this omission, but I understand why they would not spin up a whole new sticker production just for a reissue. This also likely signals that future reissues (such as Retrax) will also be missing the rubsign stickers.
Cybershark has fifteen points of articulation and every single on on my copy of this figure is just as solid as my original 1997 figure. His weapons also attach nice and snug to his fists. The two missiles mentioned above store in his back. You can slide one out, then swing up the launcher in the torso to fire the missile.
This reissue of Cybershark is very well done. It looks great in the package and the figure itself is solid and looks fantastic. If you missed out on the original Cybershark figure, this is a worthy substitute. I do miss the rubsign sticker, but I still have my original so I'm solid in that respect. Your mileage may vary. Overall I do recommend this review (especially if you can get it on discount).
- Beautiful sculpt that really embodies the "techno organic" design philosophy of Beast Wars.
- Really nice deco.
- Fun action features and accessories.
- Good articulation (especially for the time).
- No quality issues with joints and action features.
- The lack of the rubsign may turn some fans off.