Megatron is a lot of things. He is maniacal, ruthless, and single-minded in his pursuit of whatever latest goal he has dreamed up to bring him the most power as quickly as possible. What he is not, however, is stupid. He has been able to consolidate and maintain his power because he has surrounded himself with Decepticons like Soundwave. No matter what, though, Soundwave has always proven himself to be smarter. He understands that knowledge is power in the most basic sense. He shows little to no emotion due to the fact that he deleted those sub-processes to be able to process information more quickly.
Soundwave has long been a fan favourite, remembered affectionately by most non-Transfans as “Oh! Yeah! That tape deck guy with the cool voice!” He should more accurately be called the “microcassette recorder guy with the cool voice”, but why split hairs? His appearance in the videogame is as some form of Cybertronian car but both War for Cybertron’s End Credits and Gamestop “Shockwave” exclusive commercial give a nod back to the original “tape deck guy” by providing him a boombox mode. Of course, Transfans then tripped over themselves to put up their fan-made Boombox modes, here’s the most common one I found.
Definitely passable as a futuristic boombox, but let’s get to the official modes. First, that alt-mode. He actually reminds me of a mean version of Bumblebee’s “Courier Mode”, but what actual purpose he was meant to serve hasn’t been shared. He is described in the book as having been a gladiator, like Megatron himself.
Like Bumblebee, his weapons store away, but here’s where this toy takes the homage three steps further. First, the place that they store becomes the chest in robot mode, perfectly emulating G1 Soundwave’s cassette door. Second, his weapons look exactly like G1 Soundwave’s hand gun and shoulder mounted missle launcher, with one of them even collapsing to fit in storage just like G1 Soundwave’s. Third, and here’s the really impressive bit of homage detail, G1 Soundwave’s weapons were made to look like batteries and were stored in what would be the battery compartment on the back of his recorder mode. This time they take the battery look further by having a positive and negative side like real batteries.
Soundwave’s robot mode is great but, this time unlike Bumblebee, is only vaguely game-accurate. It actually has more detail, especially in the shoulders and forearms. Of course, it’s customary for Transfans to find some degree of fault (we are rarely completely happy with something) but I can honestly say the only thing I would have liked to see would be some of his Mini-cons… Deployers… Spy Cassettes… Recordicons… “Cassetticons”… whatever you want to call them. He just doesn’t seem complete without them.
Up next: with two more to go, who will show up first? Optimus, to Bumblebee’s rescue? Or Megatron, sealing Bumblebee’s doomed fate? Find out tomorrow.