Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblaster Review

Masterpiece Soundwave was my number one figure of 2013.  Can a black repaint of my favorite figure of 2013 contend for a top spot in 2014?  Well let’s slow down a bit there.  Soundblaster is the latest Transformer in the revitalized Masterpiece line from Takara (well mostly from Takara, some of it makes its way to Hasbro … not much, but some!).  Soundblaster doesn’t do anything wrong, and in fact he has some cool parts and accessories.  But the main focus of this release is one thing:

Ratbat.

Takara Tomy Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblater Ratbat Review

The reason that probably 90% of the people will buy MP-13B Masterpiece Soundblaster is for that little Ratbat cassette.  This isn’t to say that Soundblaster isn’t a cool character.  It’s just that large-sized Masterpiece figures are expensive.  Collecting Soundwave and his tapes has never been cheap either.  The only way you could get them all in one swoop is to hunt down the Toys R Us version, but then you would be stuck with yellow eyes Soundwave.

The import Soundwave came only with Laserbeak.  You then had to buy two $60 two packs of Frenzy/Buzzsaw and Rumble/Ravage.  So after that $300 investment you will have to drop about another $150 if you want Ratbat.

Takara Tomy Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblater Ratbat Review

I’m a little curious as to where it goes from here?  Do they plan to do another couple of two-packs?  Slugfest and Overkill?  Possibly a Ratbat repaint like Wingthing paired with Garboil?  I guess anything is possible.  I bet it would also make some people happy if the Ratbat mold gets used again in a cheaper pack.  Sure it won’t be official Ratbat, but most people would be willing to fudge it.  Then in 2044, Toys R Us will do a giant gift set with every Masterpiece cassette ever, Soundwave and Soundblaster.  Only then will they finally move on to the Autobot cassettes.

Takara Tomy Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblater Ratbat Review

The recolor of Soundblaster is fairly simple.  For the most part where there was blue on Soundwave there is now black on Soundblaster.  The one exception to that rule is Soundblaster’s feet which are all black so that they look like sneakers!  His cassette window is now a clear red and has little techno parts around the corners.  The clear red works really sticks out when paired with the black, especially around his eyes.

Takara Tomy Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblater Ratbat Review

We’ll get to his companion in a second, but first I’ll go over the accessories you get with Soundblaster.  He comes backed with a new clear red Megatron gun, a clear cassette case, a sensor hand attachment, the concussion blaster, a purple extension chest unit, and a red energon cube that can plug into his chest.  I think it’s a bit odd they decided to go with the clear case instead of the pink that the first set of cassettes came in.  It matches a little better with the TRU version, but I would assume people who imported this most likely imported the first one too.  The chest extension with the Decepticon logo looks great, and like his normal chest has additional techno parts sculpted into the plastic.  He’s a little plain without the chest extension so I display him with it on.

Takara Tomy Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblater Ratbat Review

So on to the final accessory, Ratbat!

Like all of the previous Decepticon cassettes, Ratbat is a great representation of the G1 character.  His transformation is fairly simple: you pulled his wings out, flip his chest and head around, and then flip the jets back behind him.  He has a great wingspan, and they are articulated enough to put them in a great amount of poses.  Ratbat has little indents in his feet that allow you to use the parts in Soundblaster’s (or Soundwave’s) arm to clip him in.  Even if you don’t use the clips he’s pretty sturdy.

Takara Tomy Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblater Ratbat Review

I can’t say much bad about Ratbat.  He exceeds all expectation like most Masterpiece figures do.  I think the only complaint would be that you currently have to buy Soundblaster to get him.  I’ll join in on that sentiment as well even though I am pretty happy to have a black Soundwave variant, $150 is not an easy pill to swallow any time of the year!  If you want to get one though I would import because it will save you a few bucks, check out HLJ as they still have him in stock.

Takara Tomy Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblater Ratbat Review

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7 thoughts on “Transformers Masterpiece MP-13B Soundblaster Review”

  1. Thanks for the review. I just now pulled the trigger and bought the TRU Soundwave, with a coupon and earned credit card points I got him for cheaper than he would have been had I bought him in the store. The yellow eyes don’t bother me and I’m excited to get all the cassettes.
    I’m not super familiar with Soundblaster, other than knowing he is a rebuilt Soundwave, in some continuity (was it Headmasters?). I’m going to have to keep an eye out for ratbat though, I hope he’ll be offered by himself or a two pack at some point.

    1. Thanks man! I’m actually surprised you were still able to find a TRU Soundwave. Did you get it from a store or a third party seller? I’ve literally never seen one … not that I would buy it, but I just see the same old Acid Storm who at some point I hope goes on clearance.

      I’m definitely interested to see what they plan to do as far as more cassettes. My gut would tell me this is it, but then again they could easily do a couple new molds and some repaints into two-packs like the previous Takara releases. If they do a couple of those I wonder what the chances of a TRU set down the line would be? I don’t know, and I can’t wait so I just import. Probably not the most responsible thing but it sucks waiting for Hasbro/TRU to get their shit together with the MP releases.

      1. I bought it from a third party seller. It has been opened, but the seller has great ratings and had everything repackaged in the tray with the box and sleeve and everything. The price he was asking was reasonable, considering what I’ve been seeing them sell for, and with my coupon and CC points it cost $105 shipped.
        Still expensive, but I can live with it.
        I was in New York in November and they had several Soundwaves boxed up and sitting on the floor. I had never seen one in my area, and they had long been unavailable on their website. If I had not been on vacation (needing cash for things to do) and had room in my suitcase (which I didn’t) I definitely would have grabbed one at that point.

        I would expect acid storm to go on sale at some point. A few years ago I found the MP Skywarp on clearance at Walmart for $15. I couldn’t believe my good fortune on that one. I don’t have him anymore though, I sold him last year when we were clearing stuff out to move into a new house. He wasn’t the most playable figure, and I now have the FoC Skywarp, so I’m happy.

        At some point I will get an MP10 Optimus, but the Year of the Horse version just doesn’t do anything for me. I might be able to live with the gold and black colors on Optimus himself, but the giant clear trailer kills it.

        1. Yep I still need a MP-10 as well! Had the original MP-1 from way back but sold him a few years back since he had a bummed leg.

          Gotta figure of anyone Optimus will eventually see a reissue. This hope is the only thing stopping me from getting the YOTH version.

          I’d even get a black Optimus if the price was right!

          In the end I think you did good on Soundwave. I still need to get two cassettes but never found the right time to drop the $60 for them.

          1. I just got back from a TRU, and they had the YOTH Optimus without the electronic theft device, so you could open the window and get a good look at the figure.
            I’ll say, he looks pretty sweet with those colors. The color palette is so dark he almost could pass for a new character. I still hate the clear trailer, though. If the trailer were the same color as his thighs I would be tempted to get it.
            TRU.com had him on sale I think Wednesday, maybe Thursday night for $110. I don’t know what the deal with the sale was, it came and went very quickly.

  2. My Soundwave arrived, and he is absolutely fantastic. Yeah, the MP-10 is great and I’m happy with the price I paid, but with Soundwave I really don’t know how they could have made him better and I’m ecstatic to now have him in my collection.
    I’m actually very happy with the yellow eyes, because really that is how I see Soundwave when I think of him. We only had two genuine transformers (and a bunch of Go-bots) as a kid. I had Optimus Prime, my brother had Soundwave, so the yellow visor is just what comes to mind first. All the cassettes are really cool. Ravage is fine but not jaw-dropping, I am very glad to have a good Rumble/Frenzy, but I’ll mostly be playing with Buzzsaw and Laserbeak.

    1. Great to hear you liked him!

      I really do think he is the best MP figure made thus far, from both an engineering standpoint as well as just itching that need for such a cool character in general. Here’s hoping for many more cassettes to come.

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