「Autobots Inferior, Soundwave Superior」
Transformers. More than meets the eyes. Transformers. Robots in Disguise.
Ever since the 80’s, kids and adults alike have been awed by the notion of your everyday household items and belongings that can convert into robot and back. Animated series and movies are watched, source materials are gathered, toys and figures are collected, it’s been a dream for all those fascinated by the Transformers.
Finally got this gem earlier this month after missing the 1st release earlier this year due to indecisiveness, I’ve immediately placed a pre-order the moment a 2nd release was announced some Moons back.
Good thing I’ve decided against getting this Transformers Masterpiece on auction sites and evilBay as immoral scalpers had inflated the value of the 1st release. Even checking the price now reveals that most of the listed still on the more expensive side, save for a few that sells at its original base…
The packaging for Takara Tomy’s Transformers Masterpiece MP-13 Soundwave is huge. When compared to the other Masterpiece that I have, the Transformers Masterpiece MP-01B Convoy Black Ver., Soundwave’s box is much wider (Albeit the height is almost the same), due to its many accessories that take up much of the spaces around the clear plastic
However I (And many other comrades as well from what I can read and watch from their reviews of the 1st release) felt that the packaging could have been much more compact as it’s just a waste of space, and the contents can easily be squeezed together in a smaller box instead. I will show you why in my next posting.
As with all Transformers figures that come before and after, the included instruction manual and warning sheet will help you to convert your Soundwave to its alternate mode step-by-step.
Continuing the tradition of the Transformers Masterpiece series, a couple of trading cards are also included, one for Soundwave itself, the other for Condor (Or Laserbeak to the West).
The usual technical spec data base as well as a brief history of the characters is shown in on the reverse side of the cards themselves.
Released from its plastic prison, here’s be Soundwave itself along with all its accessories. w
Standing on its all-too-steady die-cast (The only place I can identify thus far) feet, this is by far the best looking Soundwave I’ve seen of those years of various incarnations of the Destron (Decepticon) Communications Officer, while still retaining its G1 design from the 80’s.
Since Soundwave came outta its box in robot mode, let’s have a look at its articulations first, shall we?
Unlike Convoy, Soundwave’s neck is not on a ball joint, thus limiting its rotation to just x (looking left and right) and y (looking up and down to a small degree), unable to do a side-to-side head tilt.
Soundwave’s signature multi-rocket pod is attached onto its right shoulder via double joints, which could be stashed on its back(pack) when not in use.
This gimmick is actually part of the transformation sequence, of which we’ll cover in the subsequent post of the review.
Soundwave can swivel on its abdomen-waist, which is a huge plus for posing. :3c
Standard rotational articulations on its double-jointed shoulders…
…swivel points just above its upper arms…
…close to 180 degrees on its double-jointed elbows…
…as well as swivel points at the base of its hands.
While the thumbs are fixed, Soundwave’s index fingers are jointed so you could manipulate it separately. XDc The rest of the fingers are moulded in a single movable piece, though.
There’s also a slot on its palms that you could attach its gun on.
Soundwave’s hip design, unfortunately, is quite bizarre for a figure made nowadays.
As you could see below, the “ball” joint allows only rotational movements on its y-axis and swing from side-to-side (Which is also part of its transformation) but couldn’t afford a forward bend at all. To do so, you’ll have to rely on the clicky ratchet joint just below the “ball” joint that allows only a 90 degrees of articulations.
Kinda a worry-some task however since the connecting points on the joints feel so fragile. If only they make the joints die-cast instead… :/
Elsewhere just below the thigh, a standard 90 degrees knee bend is possible.
Again as part of the transformation sequence, Soundwave can rotate at will just above the knees.
It’s feet on the other
foot hand are fixed in a direction, but you could move them a bit side-to-side and up and down.
There’s a hidden compartment on the inner side of Soundwave’s feet, which could be used to store the weapons from its minions (Rumble and Frenzy, sold separately in two sets alongside Jaguar aka Ravage and Buzzsaw respectively).
In homage to its animation origin, Soundwave is given a sensor device that can be attached onto its retracted hands.
When not in use, the device can be stored onto a slot on Soundwave’s rear.
The battery thingie can be transformed into Soundwave’s gun.
Similar to the sensor device, the battery can be stored upon a slot on the left backpack, directly opposite the right shoulder rocket pod’s resting place.
Similar to many Transformers Masterpiece, Soundwave comes with an in-scale Megatron’s alternate form, the Custom Walther P38.
While it’s basically the same mould as before, this version comes with an extra joint upon the end of its stock, else everything the exact copy, including the detachment of them barrel and scope and such as well as the extending handle.
Energon is the ultimate resource in Transformers Universe. To store Energon, Energon Cubes are needed. An empty Energon Cube is included with Soundwave, which is basically just a clear container. XDc
You could however detach the lid on one end of the Energon Cube and attach it onto Soundwave’s chest, to recreate the scene from the animation where it creates the said cubes.
But the Cube is empty you said? You could download and print this Energon paper craft template from the official site and fill your Cube up with priceless Energon energy.
An extra chest piece is included as well, to simulate the display of data on Soundwave’s chest.
At the end of the instruction manual, there exists a couple of cut-outs of which you could be used for added realism. You could ruin your manual or you could choose to scan and print them out yourself. w
A pity on the QC tho, there’s paint smears on the chest piece. :/ Similar smears can be found on the left most corner of the main body’s chest as well. >,<
And now to the main and the most anticipated gimmick on Soundwave: the ejection of its Cassetticon minion from its chest, as seen in the animations! Packed together with Soundwave is its trusted surveillance expert Condor (Laserbeak) in its cassette mode. We’ll have a thorough look later in the next posting. ^_~
The gimmick aside, Soundwave’s inner chest compartment can fit up to three of its Cassetticons (Others sold separately) via a spring-loaded mechanism inside. By pushing the inner piece further inside, you could slip in a couple more cassettes (Up to three in total). When not loaded, you could release the lock via pressing a small button on its back to move a level (The size of a single cassette) at a time (up to twice of course).
We’ll take a look at Soundwave’s alternate mode as well as the Cassetticon Condor (Laserbeak) on our continuation of the review later on. w