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TFNation 2019 Transformers Convention Review

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Annual Transformers Forum Meet Tour

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Our 2019 Forum Meet took place this weekend, in Cardiff

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Video Footage from Transforce in 2001

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Divebomb (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on October 11, 2007 | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: DECEPTICON
SUB-GROUP: PREDACON
FUNCTION: AERIAL ASSAULT
FIRST APPEARANCE: TRANSFORMERS # 25

“Conquer the skies and all below you will fall.”

Profile: Divebomb is like a kid at a candy shop – as he flies high overhead looking down at the ground below, he’s so delighted with all the targets he has to choose from that he doesn’t know where to begin. But it usually doesn’t take long before he’s gleefully shooting up the countryside. He’s almost always in good spirits. The only thing that consistently ruffles his carbon-steel feathers is when he must surrender his own independence to combine with his fellow Predacons. He doesn’t care for his fellow Predacons and detests sharing his components with them. When not engaged in combat, Divebomb usually busies himself in the building of his latest mechanest. Perched atop tall buildings or mountain peaks, these fanciful, fortified constructions are commonly composed of late model sports cars, wings of low flying jets and theater marquees. “I like to live comfortably,” says Divebomb.

Abilities: Rocket thrusters mounted on his back allow Divebomb to achieve speeds of 300 mph when in eagle mode. He has a 2000 mile range and can reach an altitude of 18 miles. High resolution telescopic lenses within his optical modules enable him to spot a dime from 10,000 feet. He can lift a tank and tear through its armored skin with his beak. In robot mode he uses a particle beam
rifle with infrared sight and a laser-guided sword, which is guided to its target after Divebomb first pinpoints the target with a laser beam that shoots from the sword’s tip. Divebomb combines with his fellow Predacons to form the giant robot, Predaking.

Weaknesses: Divebomb’s internal guidance system is easily thrown off by magnetism. Such interference causes him to lose control while he’s flying and makes him prone to crashing.

Joyride (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: AUTOBOT
SUB-GROUP: POWERMASTER
HUMAN COMPONENT: HOTWIRE
FUNCTION: WARRIOR
FIRST APPEARANCE: TRANSFORMERS # 41 (Joyride), TRANSFORMERS # 42 (Hotwire)

“Enjoy each moment like it’s your last.”

Profile: Although a fierce warrior and a skilled technician, Joyride is best known for his high-speed highway antics. He drives too fast and too recklessly to be allowed on the same road with most other vehicles. He only bothers to pay attention to the traffic around him on those occasions when he accidentally plows into some of it. His thrill-seeking isn’t limited to racing alone. The only reason he joined the Autobots was for fun: He gets a kick out of war. He can imagine nothing more enjoyable than fighting a troop of fuelthirsty Decepticons, which is an attitude that grates on some of his more serious-minded comrades-in-arms. He’s as quick to jump to conclusions as he is to floor his accelerator. This impulsive behavior often results in Joyride’s pursuit of various
ill-considered courses of action. Often, only the interference of some of his more thoughtful fellow Autobots prevents him from falling victim to a disaster of his own creation.

Hotwire was classified as a “chronic unlicensed private vehicle procurer” on his home planet of Nebulos. On Earth he would be called a car thief. After Hotwire was caught by the authorities once too often, the brilliant Nebulan scientist Hi Q gave him a chance to straighten his life out by working at the Hi Q Industrial Research Complex. Recognizing Hotwire’s natural talent as a mechanic, Hi Q employed him as his top systems troubleshooter, a job in which Hotwire checked out and de-bugged all of the complex’s newest mechanical creations. Hotwire excelled in this role, but his career ended when he chose to undergo the Powermaster Process. He was biomechanically engineered to have the ability to transform and function as Joyride’s engine. This binary bonding has made each of the duo dependent on the other for his survival.

Abilities: In vehicle mode Joyride can reach a maximum speed of 525 miles per hour and has a range of 800 miles. His titanium-belted tires secrete an adhesive that gives him pinpoint maneuverability on virtually any road surface. In both robot and vehicle modes he is equipped with a photon blaster, which has the ability to lock the molecular structure of any metallic target its beam touches, resulting in the freezing of any moving mechanism it hits.

Weaknesses: Joyride is a frequent victim of his own impulsiveness. He gets into numerous debilitating accidents and battles as a result of his penchant for ill-considered decisions.

Bruticus (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: DECEPTICON
SUB-GROUP: COMBATICON
FUNCTION: WARRIOR
FIRST APPEARANCE: TRANSFORMERS # 24

“The road to conquest is paved with Autobot wrecks.”

Profile: Bruticus is a model soldier. He performs his tasks with the cool, efficient, unquestioning manner that would bring an auditory module to auditory module smile to the face of any military commander. He knows how to follow orders. But he’s not very good at taking initiative on his own. In fact, he’s liable to stand around looking confused in the middle of a battle if nobody is there to tell him what to do. Still, he represents a fairly successful merging of the minds and personalities of the five Combaticons – Brawl, Swindle, Blast Off, Vortex and Onslaught – who comprise him. Whether he’s just crushing an Autobot, or flattening a whole team of them, Bruticus just does his job. “I like him,” says Decepticon Leader Megatron. “I wish I had a whole army of Bruticuses!” Luckily for the Autobots, he doesn’t.

Abilities: Bruticus is incredibly strong. He can pulverize a suspension bridge with one 14,000 psi punch. He can lift up to 500,000 pounds. He uses Onslaught’s powerful sonic stun-gun, which can smash a hillside to dust with a single blast. His armor is impervious to most artillery and radiation.

Weaknesses: Bruticus is slow and not very agile. He makes an easy target. He is not a creative thinker, and can sometimes even be a hindrance in battle if not properly prepared with instructions.

Kickback (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: DECEPTICON
SUB-GROUP: INSECTICON
FUNCTION: ESPIONAGE
FIRST APPEARANCE: TRANSFORMERS # 17

“Friend is another word for fool.”

Profile: Kickback is as charming a guy as you’ll ever meet – but it is a charm rooted in an uncommonly cruel cleverness. The singular purpose of any friendship that this Insecticon begins is to dig up embarrassing facts about the other robot or person so that Kickback can influence his “friend” into doing his bidding. Humans are particularly susceptible to his seductive talents, but even Autobots have been known to succumb. The only thing Kickback enjoys more than recruiting these unwilling double agents is destroying them after he’s exhausted their usefulness.

Abilities: In his insect mode, Kickback can use his powerful leg modules to propel him up to heights of 40 feet and over distances of a tenth of a mile. Although small in this form, a single kick of his can punch a hole in a

Defensor (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: AUTOBOT
SUB-GROUP:
PROTECTOBOT
FUNCTION:
DEFENSIVE OPERATIONS
FIRST APPEARANCE: TRANSFORMERS # 24

“As long as one innocent being is threatened, none are truly free.”

Profile: Charged with the awesome responsibility of protecting humans from Decepticon attacks, Defensor views the people of Earth as if they were his own children. Using all his power and strength, he’ll fight until his last drop of fuel is expended before he’ll allow a person to be harmed. His is a kinship that defies logic; in fact, many of the other Autobots worry that Defensor undermines his own effectiveness by being so emotionally attached to humans. Inevitably, Defensor is disappointed by this cross-species friendship he tries to foster. Although he thinks of himself as one of the humans, much like a sheepdog among a flock of sheep, rarely do humans consider this hulking, mechanical alien one of them. More likely, they consider Defensor a threat, as terrifying as any Decepticon. So far, this is a bitter truth that Defensor refuses to accept.

Abilities: Defensor has tremendous strength. He can lift 300,000 pounds with one hand. As a combination of the five Protectobots – Blades, Streetwise, Groove, First Aid, and Hot Spot – Defensor has a mind that is surprisingly sharp. Occasionally, he suffers from brief mental lapses when the portion of his mind that is Groove’s wanders. He is impervious to most artillery. He can surround himself and a 50-foot circle around him with a protective force-field. This, however, takes tremendous energy, so Defensor rarely uses the force-field for more than a minute at a time. He wields a fireball cannon, which shoots 2000 degree Fahrenheit bursts of blue fire up to 1.5 miles.

Weaknesses: Other than the aforementioned brief mental lapses, Defensor’s limbs sometimes fail to move upon command from his brain, apparently due to poor circuit connections. He is not especially mobile or agile.

Perceptor (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: AUTOBOT
FUNCTION: SCIENTIST
FIRST APPEARANCE: TRANSFORMERS # 17

“One’s ultimate truth lies in one’s molecular structure.”

Profile: Perceptor’s thirst for knowledge is unquenchable. He will seek it to the exclusion of all else. To him, being on Earth is like a miner finding a new vein of gold – each eagerly plumbs untold riches, neither knowing when his source will run out, if ever. Perceptor’s specific role in the Autobot cause is studying how best the Autobots should adapt to Earth, and conversely how Earth’s alien environment is affecting the Autobots. Autobot Leader Optimus Prime considers this research vital to the Autobots’ survival as long as they’re marooned on Earth. Although good-natured and friendly, Perceptor is not easily drawn into joining with other Autobots to do anything other than his work.

Abilities: Perceptor is extremely intelligent. His capacity for data storage is second only to Optimus Prime’s. Although familiar with all the sciences, his specialties are metallurgy, molecular chemistry, and electrical engineering. He has two different capacities in microscope mode. He can magnify objects up to 10,000 times as an optical microscope and up to a million times as a scanning electron microscope. Using his magnifying lenses to concentrate and intensify its beam, he can convert his lens barrel to a powerful light cannon. It can blast a hole in a cinder block wall 2,000 miles away with pinpoint accuracy. He can use the cannon in robot mode or convert to a third form and use it as a stationary field artillery piece. He also carries a concussion rifle in robot mode.

Weaknesses: If he were human, Perceptor might be called absent-minded, since he is rarely aware of anything but the work in front of him. He actually forgets at times that he is involved in a raging war and, as a result, is sometimes a casualty of it. His magnifying lenses, although resistant to cracking, are nevertheless the weak link in his make-up. Any problems with them not only can bring his work to a halt, but can also considerably reduce his offensive abilities.

Topspin (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: AUTOBOT
FUNCTION: LAND & SEA ASSAULT
FIRST APPEARANCE:

“The thrill is in the journey.”

Profile: No mountain is high enough, no river is wide enough to stop this one-robot wrecking crew. The more difficult the terrain to be traversed, the more Topspin likes it. Without the constraints of an Earth vehicular disguise like the ones most of his fellow Autobots have been given by the Ark, he can use the superior mobility and versatility of his Cybertronic vehicular form to go almost anywhere on land or water. On a personal level, he considers his conquest of a steep precipice or a raging river as much a victory as any victory over the Decepticons that may result from an Autobot attack. As Topspin likes to point out, “I take pride in my work.”

Abilities: In vehicle mode, Topspin is propelled by two rear-mounted jet engines, which can accelerate him to speeds of 300 mph on a flat surface. He also is equipped with two pontoons projecting from his front, which allow him to travel up to 80 mph on water, like a hydrofoil. Using two side-mounted high-voltage electric blasters, two small hand-mounted lasers, and a powerful
particle beam rifle, Topspin can release a near-unrelenting barrage of devastating force. Like his brother, Twin Twist, he can spring from his vehicle mode into his robot mode in less than half a second. His weaponry is available to him in either mode.

Weaknesses: His preoccupation with personal glory often distracts Topspin from more threatening situations, such as a Decepticon attack. The high fuel demands of his jet engines and weaponry leave him more vulnerable to exhausting his energy supplies than most other Autobots.

Piranacon (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: DECEPTICON
SUB-GROUP: SEACON
FUNCTION: NAVAL ASSAULT
FIRST APPEARANCE: TRANSFORMERS # 49

“To live is to hunt; to hunt is to live!”

Profile: As the living incarnation of the six distinct and often feuding Seacon personalities, Piranacon might lead one to believe that his six-part mind must be confused and tormented. Quite the opposite is true. The bottom line on all Seacons is that they love what they do, and what they do best is hunt for prey. Piranacon is the truest expression of this lethal talent. From
the moment the Seacons combine to form him, he is hunting for prey. When he finds and destroys one hapless victim, he immediately starts looking for another. He will continue this course of behavior until he runs out of fuel (which he inevitably will do since he never pauses to re-energize) or until he is stopped (which considering his awesome power, rarely happens). Usually, Seacon leader Snaptrap sets an internal timer in advance of combining with the other Seacons to insure that Piranacon will automatically disassemble into his component Seacons at some future time. Piranacon is so single-minded about his task that he will brush aside – if necessary, knock aside – any Decepticon who tries to talk to him about anything else. More than a few of his comrades have had a few screws jarred loose (and worse) by merely asking Piranacon if he would like his joints lubed, or some equally innocent question. “I wish I had a thousand more like him,” Decepticon Commander Megatron says with a smile.

Abilities: Piranacon’s strength is immense. He can hold up to 4,000,000 tons, making him ideal for lifting freighters and various warships from the sea. He is fully operational up to a depth of 30,000 feet below sea level. He only walks at a maximum speed of 15 mph on land and 10 mph undersea, but since he is virtually impervious to weapons-fire, his need for speed in order to evade enemy attack is negligible. He wields a jawbreaker cannon (which is actually the weapons-base mode of the Seacon Overbite), which shoots powerful metal-eating, salt-based corrosives.

Weaknesses: Piranacon has no known physical weaknesses. His one track mind often prevents him from accepting the advice and help of others, usually to his detriment. He jeopardizes his well-being by not attending to his own basic needs, such as refueling and removing rust spots.

Profile published in: TRANSFORMERS # 59

Optimus Prime (Powermaster) (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: , ,

ALLEGIANCE: AUTOBOT
SUB-GROUP: POWERMASTER
HUMAN COMPONENT: Hi Q
FUNCTION: AUTOBOT COMMANDER
FIRST APPEARANCE: TRANSFORMERS # 1 (Optimus Prime), TRANSFORMERS # 42
(Hi Q)

“Freedom is the right of all sentient beings.”

Profile: Sage, scholar, soldier – Optimus Prime is all this and more. To peace-loving beings across the galaxy the revered leader of the Autobots is the living symbol of freedom – a beacon that shines against the forces of darkness. To his followers he is a bottomless well of inspiration and courage from which they draw their strength. And to the evil Decepticons he is the one force in the universe who can shatter their dreams of galactic conquest. He has dedicated his existence to the protection of all life forms – mechanical, organic and otherwise. His wisdom and compassion are legendary. Although fate has set his course on a path of destruction and strife, his greatest desire is to bring peace and harmony to all inhabited worlds everywhere.

Optimus Prime is binary-bonded to Hi Q, a humanoid whose genius in computer programming and design was renowned on his home planet of Nebulos. There he ran the Hi Q Industrial Research Complex, a facility that produced many of the technological innovations that had, over the past few decades, dramatically improved the quality of life for his people. While trying to help several Autobots rebuild Optimus Prime, he made the decision to join the Autobots and defend Nebulos against a Decepticon attack. To do so, he and several of his employees underwent The Powermaster Process, which, through bio-engineering, gave them the ability to transform into the engines that their Autobot partners required to power their fight against the Decepticons. Hi Q was paired with Optimus Prime. So far their collaborative efforts have met with great success.

Abilities: Optimus Prime is the strongest and most intelligent of all the Autobots. His strategic, logic and programming skills have no equal among Transformers. He splits into three modules: robot, auxiliary and battle station. The van portion of his trailer truck mode transforms into the robot or “Optimus” module, which is the part of him that is sentient and is most commonly referred to as Optimus Prime. In this mode he can lift 4,000,000 pounds and exert a force of 12,000 pounds per square inch with a single punch. He carries a laser rifle with which he can burn a hole in the nose cone of a Decepticon jet at a distance of 30 miles. And with his outstanding visual acuity, he rarely misses. His auxiliary or “Prime” module is a small cart-shaped device that he stores in his trailer portion and occasionally uses to sneak behind enemy lines for reconnaissance purposes. He can maintain radio control over it within a 1200-mile radius. Having his auxiliary unit in the field is like being there himself. The trailer portion of his truck turns into his battle station module, which also serves as an armed fortress. It is equipped with two concussion blasters, two twin particle beam cannons, an auto-launcher that shoots a variety of artillery and radiation beam weapons, and a landing platform. An antenna within the battle station allows Optimus Prime to control it and also to maintain a radio link to all Autobots within a 50-mile radius. The antenna can be adapted to a satellite hookup, which provides a tenfold increase in its effective range. In robot mode he can combine with his trailer module and more than double his size and quadruple his strength.

Traditionally, the elders of the Transformer race have bestowed upon an individual of great courage and wisdom the Creation Matrix, an intricate program encoded in light patterns within a crystal. The Matrix grants its bearer the amazing ability to help create new Transformer life within the lifeless shell of a newly constructed Transformer body. Since the beginning of the Autobot-Decepticon war, an Autobot commander has typically possessed the Matrix. The most recent Autobot leader to be so honored was Optimus Prime.

Weaknesses: Although Optimus Prime can function as three separate modules, injury to any one of them is felt by the other two. The auxiliary unit is particularly vulnerable. However, the Optimus module is by far the most important unit of the trio. Although he could survive without the other two, they could not survive without him. Otherwise, the only weakness he could be accused of having is compassion and concern for the safety of others. He would be a more effective military commander if he were more ruthless, but then he wouldn’t be Optimus Prime.

Profile published in: TRANSFORMERS # 70

Computron (Marvel Comics)

Written by admin on | Characters | Tags: ,

ALLEGIANCE: AUTOBOT
SUB-GROUP: TECHNOBOT
FUNCTION: WARRIOR
FIRST APPEARANCE: HEADMASTERS # 3

“Thorough data analysis is essential for the synthesis of successful strategy.”

Profile: Although much admired for his dedication, bravery, skill and intelligence, Computron is an unfortunate example of being too technologically advanced for his own good. Centuries ago on Cybertron the five Autobots who comprise Computron – Afterburner, Nosecone, Strafe, Lightspeed and Scattershot – agreed to apply the new engineering science of mechanical combinatics to themselves so that they could unite to form a super-Autobot to more effectively combat the Decepticons. Scattershot, however, insisted that their combination be better than anyone else’s, that the contribution of each of the five component Autobots to the whole be maximized in every way. The result was not what anyone expected: Computron was created, but as he was programmed to thoroughly and exhaustively analyze the input of each of the five who comprise him, he takes several minutes to form a consensus opinion and make a decision. Any decision. Of course, without exception, the decision he makes is the right one, but very often it comes too late to make a difference. He genuinely regrets when this happens, and feels even worse that he’s unable to do anything to change it. Nevertheless, he is well known for his sharp mind, and respected for it. He chooses every word with great care and precision and takes great pride in knowing that when Computron talks, everybody listens.

Abilities: Computron possesses awesome strength. He can lift up to 240 tons. He has excellent radar and communications capabilities. He possesses extensive data storage and data processing capacities. He is armed with Scattershot’s automatic acid-pellet gun, which shoots capsules containing a highly corrosive liquid that explodes on impact.

Weaknesses: Slow decision-making is Computron’s most glaring liability. He sometimes overheats and breaks down when he attempts to process more data than he can handle.

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