|Alias|| The 'Con without a face |
Megatron's communications chief
|Rank|| Communications Officer |
Surveillance Lieutenant Former Kaon Gladiator
|First appearance||Darkness Rising, Part 1 (Prime)|
|Voiced by|| Frank Welker (Series)
Isaac C. Singleton, Jr. (Games)
Soundwave is Megatron's Communications/Surveillance Chief of the Decepticons. Soundwave is cold and almost completely devoid of emotion. Soundwave can speak, but chooses not to, preferring to communicate through replayed Cybertronians' voice recordings, including humans he encountered. Soundwave is very skilled in combat and will not hesitate to finish off his opponents. Soundwave and his little pet, Laserbeak, will do whatever it takes to accomplish their assigned mission. Megatron is usually seen talking with Soundwave in the show. Soundwave is capable of using GroundBridges to his advantage, which is useful at times when he needed them.
Soundwave took control of the orbital station Starscream was posted at, helping Megatron to reach the Dark Energon by establishing a forward base within the station. He then directed Megatron to a Data Matrix Center in order to find a route to the Dark Energon that had not been blocked by Starscream.
Later, Soundwave notified Megatron that access to the core was impossible, as it was guarded by the Omega Gate. He and Breakdown accompanied Megatron as they led the assault on Iacon, through which they would find and take the Omega Key, opening the Omega Gate and allowing the core to be infused with Dark Energon. On their way to the Stellar Galleries, Soundwave reported snipers, and after taking them down, Megatron infused the entrance with Dark Energon and took his team into the security station. Soundwave noticed that the batteries fed the security grid, and the trio infused each of them with Dark Energon, deactivating the security measures. Soundwave then detected the Omega Key behind their next door, and after opening it, the Decepticons arrived at the Stellar Galleries. They opened the container, finding not the key, but a message from Zeta Prime, who announced that he had taken the Omega Key, anticipating Megatron's plan. Zeta sent Autobot attack forces against them, but they were swiftly taken down. Megatron ordered Soundwave to trace Zeta Prime's broadcast, and Soundwave found it came from 12.7 cycles ahead. He then noted a weak wall, and the Decepticons broke it down and entered the cities' subsystems, providing a direct route to Zeta, and the Omega Key.
The group descended down a shaft and went through a tunnel, avoiding trains on the way, and after breaking down a door in a ventilation area, they were ambushed by Autobot cloakers. Soundwave dispatched them and infused Dark Energon into the batteries. Megatron congratulated him, and then ordered him to unlock the exit. Soundwave obliged, and the trio found themselves in another tunnel. Breakdown challenged Soundwave to a race, to which the Decepticon responded, in his trademark monotone, "Negative". Tough crowd. Rushing through the tunnel, this time full of moving trains, the group came to a station where they infiltrated Iacon's lower levels. Soundwave detected the Omega Key at last, and suggested proceeding through the logistics station. Roughing it through the Autobot attackers, Soundwave finally determined that the key was beyond the train tunnels.
Soundwave and his teammates arrived at Iacon's main streets, where they met up with Brawl outside of Zeta Prime's vaults, which were impervious to the small amount of Dark Energon Megatron was capable of channeling. After Megatron's squad helped Brawl clear the area, Brawl called in the Dark Energon bombers, but they were spectacularly shot down by the planetary guns. Brawl suggested disabling them, and Soundwave assisted in carrying out the plan. Autobots advanced all around, but Soundwave and the others managed to hold them off until the next wave of bombers arrived, clearing the street and destroying the Vault doors. Soundwave joined the others on their way to the entrance, but the squad was intercepted by a Destroyer. Soundwave and Breakdown split from Megatron to flank him, and eventually they rendered him non-functional. Inside the vault, they avoided Zeta's traps and finally reached the Omega Key—but it too was a trap. Zeta then attacked them, using a giant hologram and controlling the chamber to his advantage, dropping the ceiling and sending holographic brutes to attack for him while safe within an impenetrable energy shield. (Even during the battle, Soundwave was impressed by the creation of endless energon clones, to which Breakdown responded, roughly, "NERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRD!") Soundwave's dorkiness proved useful in discerning the weakness of Zeta's machines—that the core rapidly overheated after prolonged use, and needed to open up in order to cool, rendering it vulnerable to attack. After the battle, Megatron plucked from Zeta's hand the "key"... which started to blink its lights and chirp. Zeta Prime informed them that the "key" he was actually a device that activated the real key: Omega Supreme. As the three Decepticons flew away to track Omega, Soundwave noticed that the "key" was coming for them. Omega Supreme attacked, and thrust the Decepticons' star cruiser into a wall. Crash-landing, Megatron had a change of plans; force Omega Supreme to open the Omega Gate. Soundwave noticed a Decepticon drop-ship across the bridge, but when the squad went to investigate, Omega Supreme intercepted them. Soundwave reported that his weapons were ineffective; Megatron told his soldiers to destroy the bridge supports, causing Omega Supreme's vast bulk to collapse it. But he transformed to his ship mode, flew back up, and forced the Decepticons to retreat inside. In a frenzy, Breakdown noted that the next door was locked, and Soundwave proposed that Dark Energon could open the door, which it did. Inside, Soundwave picked up a transmission from Starscream, who announced that he would be replacing the "deceased" Megatron as Decepticon leader. Enraged, Megatron threatened Starscream, but Soundwave informed his leader that communication to the surface had been cut off, so Starscream could not hear him.
The trio arrived at the lift, but found it to be locked down. Breaking the locks got the lift back to working condition, but on their way up, Omega Supreme returned and blasted it, forcing the Decepticons down the shaft at breakneck speed. Omega was still out there, so the emergency brakes' destruction was the Decepticons' only hope. At the bottom, they continued their journey to find a way to fight Omega Supreme—Soundwave noted that at the top of the tower were several heavy weapons emplacements which could at least theoretically damage Omega—but Omega Supreme didn't know the meaning of the word quit. (He really doesn't; not much in the processor department.) He grabbed the Decepticons, but Soundwave helped out in shooting Omega Supreme's hand, forcing him relinquishing the three from his grasp. They retreated inside a fortified Autobot position, and in order to prevent detection, Soundwave jammed their signals. Slaying the Autobots inside who dared attempt to counterattack, Soundwave unlocked the exit, which only let in more Autobots. They too, met their demise, but as Soundwave and his comrades escaped, he noticed that the Autobots' security was countering the effects of Dark Energon. Destroying the sentries turned to be a worthwhile solution, but then the Decepticons had to deal with Omega Supreme mining road. Soundwave's sensors indicated the presence of a bridge nearby, and though Breakdown was unsure, Megatron was willing to follow Soundwave's advice. Once again, Omega Supreme continued to stalk them, but Soundwave led his group to an alternate route...a dead end, to be precise, which Megatron was irritated with. Soundwave revealed that breaking a structurally-weak sealed doorway nearby took them to Iacon maintenance tunnels leading straight to the bridge terminal. When they arrived through the power conduits, Soundwave and the others fought through more Autobots and finally activated the bridge.
Racing across the bridge, they barely avoided Omega Supreme's pursuit, and Soundwave located another cargo lift that would transport them straight to the heavy ion turrets. On the lift he picked up several Autobot/Decepticon signals, a sign they were approaching the battle on the surface. Soundwave participated in the slug fest, and his analysis proved that the turrets nearby had enough firepower to legitimately damage Omega Supreme. Then, he showed no mercy using the turrets to breach Omega's armour and finally topple him to the ground below.
Soundwave, Breakdown, and Megatron followed Omega, and at the bottom, they were surprised to see him survive and transform into his mighty robot mode. Soundwave noted that energon batteries produced from within Cybertron were the source of Omega's limitless endurance, and further advised the team on battling Omega; avoiding his tractor beams would allow them to live, and his turrets were vulnerable, making them the prime target. When the turrets were blown, Soundwave saw that the batteries were being used to repair them, and so it became an objective to corrupt them with Dark Energon. When Omega Supreme used the batteries to heal himself, he was instead weakened, allowing the Decepticons to critically injure him. Omega Supreme was still alive even after all of that, but much weaker. Soundwave observed that his chest plating had been damaged, and Megatron ordered Soundwave and Breakdown to blast it, and Omega Supreme fell at last. Soundwave advised Megatron that now would be a good time to corrupt Omega with Dark Energon, but Megatron told Captain Obvious to shut up and did as he would have done even if Soundwave hadn't brought it up, laughing all the way.
After Cybertron's Core had been infected with Dark Energon, Soundwave was reassigned as head of Kaon's prison, and watched over (i.e., tortured) Zeta Prime in his spare time. Optimus, Bumblebee, Sideswipe and Air Raid led an Autobot breakout and battled Soundwave's minions Frenzy, Rumble and Laserbeak. Soundwave himself sustained heavy damage leaving the safety of his position to revive and retrieve each Minicon, showing uncharacteristic concern for other living beings. Eventually, defeated and critically damaged, Soundwave desperately attempted to restore himself by absorbing life force from Zeta's very own spark. His attempt to fully heal was halted by Optimus, who even took a shot from the Decepticon intended to finish off Prime. Although Soundwave and his minions fled, the damage had already been done and Zeta Prime expired moments later.
Fall of Cybertron
Soundwave was present when Optimus was brought to Megatron by Starscream and Onslaught. He watched as Metroplex pulverized Megatron. He was the only one who hesitated in following Starscream. He secretly salvaged and with the help of Laserbeak, Rumble, and an E.D.K. TechVolt, rebuilt his glorious leader, improving on his original design. He infused Megatron with Dark Energon, and pointed his leader in the direction of Starscream. He took part in the assault on the factory the Autobots had built in the crater where Trypticon crashed, and once Megatron had rebuilt the giant Decepticon, came to power up Trypticon's power core. On Megatron's orders, Soundwave rebuilt Trypticon into the Nemesis, a ship strong enough to make it towards the planet Shockwave had chosen. When the Autobots launched the Ark, the Nemesis soon caught up, and Soundwave spearheaded the assault on the other ship.
Throughout the season, Soundwave was always in the background, not really doing much and only playing things back via his audio visor. He acted as a restraint for Starscream, stopping him from terminating the prisoners. Soundwave was used to hack the Radio Satellite Array in Texas to lock onto Cybertron so the Spacebridge could be activated. He succeeded and retreated at the arrival of the human children. Soundwave helped Starscream bring online Skyquake in a canyon. He monitored the fight between Optimus Prime and him. Starscream ordered the Communications Officer to download Wheeljack's form into Makeshift so he could infiltrate the Autobot base. Soundwave fled with Starscream when the fake "Wheeljack" exploded on the top of the Nemesis. The silent con aided Knock Out and Breakdown in retrieving the Energon Harvester by sneaking round the back and taking off in his jet mode. Soundwave also made sure that Starscream kept Megatron online while he was in stasis.
Season 1 Season Finale
Soundwave was in charge of monitoring Megatron's signal while he escorted the Autobots to Unicron. The Con was present when Airachnid suggested abandoning Megatron and taking command of the Decepticons. Soundwave decided to take charge and question Airachnid's authority. The two high ranking Commanders fought on the bridge of the Nemesis with Airachnid throwing the first blows. He blocked all of her shots and lifted her into the air then throwing her across the ship. He deployed Laserbeak to assist by stunning her. He put his foot down on her and held her down. She then gave Soundwave control over the Decepticons for the time being. He picked up Megatron's life signal after thinking he was offline and was present when the Decepticon leader returned and stepped down as acting leader.
Soundwave was in control of making sure Orion Pax did not come across Decepticon information while decoding the Iacon Database. To make sure Orion did not find out who he was, Soundwave replaced all images of Optimus Prime with pictures of Ultra Magnus. Eventually, Orion broke through his encryptions and realized who Optimus Prime was. He was ordered by Megatron to make sure Arcee was 'escorted' of the ship before she could find the location of the Autobots' missing leader. He used his Ground-Bridge technology to bridge her off the ship. Soundwave informed Megatron of Airachnid's disloyalty by playing back her planning to leave Megatron on Earth. Soundwave was on the bridge when the Nemesis was taken over by Dark Energon. He took action by trying to regain control of the vessel by hacking into the systems. However he was zapped into stasis before he could regain control. Soundwave was sent after the 3rd Iacon relic. He attacked Wheeljack and Ratchet by deploying Laserbeak and used him as a distraction. He found the relic before the Autobots but he was attacked by Wheeljack.
The two bots fought, each landing attacks until Wheeljack got the upper hand. Soundwave was at Wheeljack's mercy until he used the relic against him. The con left Wheeljack to return to Laserbeak's SOS signal. He picked up Laserbeak and returned to the Nemesis with the relic. A grenade was discovered in Soundwave and once disposed of he returned to work. Soundwave used Laserbeak to locate Smokescreen and once he did Soundwave groundbridged in and captured him. Soundwave broke into a communications building to gain control of a laser satellite, he had control but failed to stop the humans from hacking and retreated in jet mode before the Autobots arrived.
Season 2 Finale
Soundwave took Raf hostage in exchange for an Omega Key. He arrived on Cybertron with the other Decepticons with the humans as hostage. He traded the human for a key with Bumblebee. He also witnessed the activation and destruction of the Omega Lock. He returned to Earth with the cons and saw the destruction of the Autobot Base.
Soundwave deployed Laserbeak to find the humans and Autobots who were scattered. He tried to fix Laserbeak to recover footage and also Spacebridged Shockwave to Earth. Soundwave figured out before Starscream that the Autobots were trying to get the Decepticons to separate their army. Soundwave aided Shockwave in Texas, while in jet mode he took on Optimus and shot him down using Laserbeak. Soundwave Groundbridged a Predacon Bone to Megatron and retreated. With the infection outbreak on the ship Soundwave was in charge of clean up duty. He took a team of Decepticons and saw the destruction of the infected cons. He saw that the traitor Airachnid was free from her pod and Spacebridged her back to one of Cybertron's moons along with her Insecticon army.
The Autobots tried to get several Vehicons that were getting away with their spoils. Emerging from the sky in his alternate mode, he prepared a GroundBridge for the Vehicons in front of the retreating Vehicons. Soundwave soon dispatches Laserbeak, preparing for a rematch with Optimus Prime. Despite wanting to defeat him, he himself was taken out when Optimus used his missile launcher and took him out. While Laserbeak escaped, Optimus and the rest of the Autobots brought Soundwave in for questioning. Optimus asked him for information on Megatron's then-upcoming plans. However, Soundwave found his interrogation as a joke and replayed Optimus and his voice set to a musical tone and remix, before showing a smile emoticon on his front screen. While Optimus threatened to subject him to harsher means if he doesn't cooperate, Soundwave broadcasted a sonic pulse that caused the Autobots and humans alike to gain pain in their ears. Ratchet soon suggested opening Soundwave up to obtain his information, knowing that he kept all of the Decepticon plans he had been informed off in his personal archive. However, those plans came crashing down when Soundwave merely deleted all of his data directly from their drives. In a stunning act, he finally broke his vow of silence when he told the Autobots that he was superior and that they were inferior. Deciding that he would be unable to keep the charade up, Soundwave's visor blacked out as he went off-line, slumping on the table. Soon after, Laserbeak used the surveillance records that Soundwave had on the Autobots' human allies to track down and follow Agent Fowler, with the intent of getting to the Autobot base with his use. This plan succeeded, Laserbeak arrived at the Autobots' new base and soon reunited with Soundwave, having him come online and soon attacking the Autobots. Despite Smokescreen lunging at him, Soundwave easily disposed of him by grabbing him with his tentacle and did the same for Bulkhead. Agent Fowler tried to get involved as well, but failed to defeat him, being easily shoved aside as Soundwave approached Ratchet with his tentacles.
Soundwave was present when Megatron was convincing Ratchet to help the Decepticons. The Communication Chief picked up Laserbeak's signal even though he was on his chest.
Season 3 Finale
Soundwave was stationed on the bridge during the assault of the Decepticon war ship. The Wreckers stormed the bridge of the Nemesis. As they charged on toward Soundwave he opened a GroundBridge sending them to a Vehicon platoon. When Ultra Magnus reported this, Jack had a plan to get rid of Soundwave using his "relocation trick" against him. He Groundbridged to the Nemesis bridge where four Vehicons aimed at him. Miko then jumped through wearing the Apex Armor, killed them and charged at Soundwave. He opened a GroundBridge with his fingers, but she stopped before entering. He then walked towards her trying to push her in. Raf then opened a Bridge behind Soundwave. The Decepticon was caught within the two portals feeding off each other. Jack was nearly pulled in before Miko caught him, as her new found mass was seemingly immovable. As the portals disappeared, Soundwave charged at the two humans. To his surprise, he phased right through them. He could hear and see everything but could not be heard or seen. He was forced to watch as Jack and Miko took over the ship helplessly. He was forever trapped in the Shadowzone with Laserbeak (likely).
Predacons Rising Movie
It is presumed that during the TV movie Soundwave, was still trapped in the Shadowzone with Laserbeak. None of the Decepticons seemed concerned about the whereabouts of Soundwave at all as none of them were present at his fate so they may just think he escaped on his own.
Up until his capture, Soundwave's most defining characteristic was his total, and unsettling silence; he could speak but chose not to a testament to his evident skill with keeping secrets. His equally defining characteristic was his unquestionable loyalty and devotion to Megatron, who in turn trusted Soundwave fully and completely, possibly more so than any of his other minions and showing him considerable favor. His loyalty drove Soundwave to maintain a constant vigilance on the Nemesis for any potential conspiracies against his master and alert him of the would-be traitors. Megatron even asked Soundwave to remind him of Airachnid's trustworthiness (which Soundwave willingly obliged by replaying a recording of Airachnid declaring her belief in the need to consider a future without Megatron). Soundwave himself apparently did not trust any of his fellow Decepticons, particularly Starscream and Airachnid, keeping a constant watch on the former (who continuously plotted to take over leadership of the Decepticons) and later enlightening Megatron that Airachnid was not to be trusted. Soundwave diligently followed his orders without question or hesitation, and often succeeded in all his efforts, rewarding him with praise and further trust and favor from Megatron. As long as Soundwave is around, Megatron has nothing to fear, and Megatron is well aware of that fact.
It's not just loyalty to Megatron that makes Soundwave such an effective soldier, however. He is concise and pragmatic in all of his endeavors. If he doesn't personally harm anyone during an outing, it cannot be considered an act of mercy or decency. It is simply not a part of his mission and not worth considering. Primus help those unfortunate souls who are in the way or are his mission, as he will almost certainly find them and it will not be a pleasant experience when he catches his target, as Ratchet found out.
After being blasted down by the Autobots, he was captured by the Autobots and taken to their base for interrogation. Soundwave continuously gave them a run-around, refusing to cooperate or spill any information, mocking them and even using a sonic pulse when he was threatened with "less civil forms of interrogation". Only when Ratchet threatened to "open up" Soundwave and look at his drives did Soundwave take drastic measures in erasing his drives of sensitive data and then breaking his silence by telling them, in an ominous voice, 'Soundwave superior, Autobots inferior.' He then crashed his own drives, fully preventing the Autobots from interrogating him further. His words to them clearly expressed that he feels superior to them, although (for some reason) he addressed himself in third-person, possibly a sign of narcissism. However, these drastic measures show the full-extent of Soundwave's complete devotion to Megatron and the Decepticon cause, that he is willing to risk his own destruction if it means his last act is for the benefit of his master.
Robot ModeIn Robot-Mode, Soundwave sports stifle-jointed legs, his wings double as his arms, making them, along with his fingers, very thin, and his face is a visor that functions like a computer screen, displaying various frequencies he picks up, radar, maps, etc. It is also capable of snapping photographic images.
On his chest he wears his surveillance drone Mini-Con Laserbeak.
Soundwave's alt-mode is an MQ-9 Reaper, an unmanned aerial vehicle that is listed in the Hunter-Killer program. He can shoot lasers from his vehicle mode and also deploy Laserbeak while in mid flight. He sometimes uses his jet mode to fly undetected.
Soundwave and Megatron first met in the pits of Kaon, where they fought as gladiators. When they were matched against each other, Soundwave became noteworthy for being the closest to ever come to beating Megatron even though he still lost. The match forged a bond of mutual respect between them. Megatron himself has never questioned Soundwave's loyalty, and clearly has full confidence in him, having shown him favor multiple times. Soundwave himself shows nothing less than total devotion to Megatron, with unquestioning obedience, and always complies with Megatron's orders, as well as alerting him to possible traitors or signs of disloyalty.
Laserbeak is Soundwave's only remaining Mini-Con following the events on Cybertron. He is mostly used for scouting mission. When his live footage had crashed, Soundwave didn't have much of a reaction, but then again, he never does. Even so, he sensed when Laserbeak was in danger, and passed up the chance of killing Wheeljack to save his drone.
Soundwave and Starscream have interacted in ways that suggest Starscream fears the silent Communications Chief, as Soundwave has kept a close watch on Starscream, constantly being an obstacle in Starscream's schemes, which Starscream's irritably acknowledged to Knock Out once before. Soundwave clearly does not trust Starscream, seeing as how he sent Laserbeak to make sure Starscream brought the critical Megatron back to the Nemesis.
There is not much interaction between the two Decepticons, Soundwave just provides Groundbridges for him when necessary. Soundwave did arrive to assist Shockwave in battle in Project Predacon (episode). Both cons worked well together to take down Optimus Prime, Bumblebee and Smokescreen and securing the Predacon bone.
Skills, Weapons, and Abilities
Despite his thin and angular build, Soundwave proved to be a deceptively dangerous warrior, skilled in unarmed combat, as well as utilizing his tentacles to overcome his foes. This comes as little shock as he was once a gladiator of Kaon.
Soundwave was a gladiator in the arenas of Kaon and was the sole warrior who came closest to defeating Megatron in battle. He uses his slim arms as blades and to block attacks, as he did against Airachnid and Wheeljack. Soundwave can extend two tentacles from his sides, using them to fight or to hack computer terminals or simply picking things up. They are shown to be very strong as they are capable of throwing around Autobots such as Wheeljack and Bulkhead. The tentacles are capable of shooting red lasers from them, generating electricity to zap opponents, and the claws at the end can rotate and be used as drills, as he did to excavate an Iacon relic.
Soundwave is a walking database, contained, as revealed in Minus One, in his hard drives, in which he stores vast amounts of data. He is capable of hacking computers, intercepting transmissions and communications, and monitoring communications on a planet-wide scale, all of which can be displayed on his visor.
Most commonly known, on Soundwave's chest he can deploy Laserbeak which is used for aerial battle or to stalk. Laserbeak also contains a full backup of Soundwave's information. So if Soundwave's information gets erased, he can reboot it all back via Laserbeak. Lately, it has been shown that Soundwave, possibly, has the ability to open Ground-Bridges anywhere, on or off the Nemesis, dubbed by Ultra Magnus as his "Relocation Trick". Unfortunately, this trick was used against him, leaving Soundwave trapped forever in the Shadowzone.
- Soundwave was a champion fighter in the Kaon pits, next to Megatron.
- Throughout the series Soundwave spoke once, but the Decepticons do not know this as it was a last act, though Soundwave thought he was not going to come back online.
- It was not revealed why Soundwave did not speak until Season 3 in Scattered, when Starscream mentioned his 'Vow of silence'.
- Soundwave only fought Optimus Prime in Season 3. With the exception of Soundwave blasting at Optimus in Darkest Hour.
- Soundwave has been offline once in the series, however he was reactivated later on. Both by his own doing.
- Soundwave is the only Decepticon to have never failed a mission in the series. He managed to complete all missions assigned to him giving a total of 9. Although he got shot down in Minus One, the mission was a success before hand.
- Some fans believed that Soundwave did have a face and that the visor is just a mask.
- Soundwave can activate Spacebridges without the aid of a gigantic structure.
- Soundwave was meant to look like a Ninja, which is why he did not speak and hardly went into battle.
- This is the first version of Soundwave to only have Laserbeak as his Mini-Con.
- Soundwave is shown to be a very skilled fighter. Managing to take down Airachnid, Bulkhead and Smokescreen with very little effort.
- In Predacons Rising, no Decepticon (not even Megatron) seems concerned about Soundwave's fate at all.
- It is unknown if the crash killed him or if he escaped the shadowzone. If he survived and escaped he will either obey his master's last order and abandon evil or become an antagonist in the sequel.
- Soundwave's habit of using voice recordings and images to communicate is similar to the autonomous robot Weebo in Disney's Flubber, and her 'daughter' Weebette.
Main Article: Soundwave Gallery
|Airachnid | Breakdown | Dreadwing | Makeshift | Megatron | Knock Out | Shockwave | Skyquake | Soundwave | Starscream|
|Vehicon (Decepticon Miner) | Insecticon | Terrorcon|
|Hardshell | Laserbeak|