THE ANNOTATED ALLSPARK ALMANAC II
In the tradition of the first “Annotated AllSpark Almanac”, chronicling all the hidden reference to Transformer lore and beyond in Jim Sorenson and Bill Forster's first Transformers: Animated guidebook, now comes the guide to the second volume of the fan-favourite series!
Unsurprisingly, some references remain elusive! They're all mentioned in this document, sometimes just with a (?) after them, but click here for the short list of references that have yet to be identified.
If you've got any ideas, send me an e-mail!
Check out Jim
Sorenson's blog at Disciples of
Read about the AllSpark Almanac at TFWIKI.Net
and buy the book at Amazon.com!
Front cover – We've got Bumblee and Sari playing with real Animated toys: Voyager-class Wreck-Gar and Optimus Prime, Deluxe-class Prowl and Ratchet, Leader-class Bulkhead, and Roll-Out Command Optimus Prime. Bulkhead's buzzsaw is on the wrong hand, however, and the packaging lying beside Bumblebee is for Voyager Prime, not Roll-Out Command Prime.
cover – The
silhouetted figure that takes up most of the back cover is a
mysterious figure of evil from the new opening sequence created for
the Japanese broadcast of the Animated
And speaking of Animated
Japan, that Japanese quote reads: “When I was a kid, Super
Robot Lifeform Transformers' books were nothing like this book. Those
were the days... But this new book is really fun, too! I didn't think
I'd be surprised at the humongous size of this book!” The quote
is attributed to Hiroyuki
the Transformer-loving patriarch of the Otoboto family, stars of new
live-action segments attached to the Japanese broadcast of Animated.
The final part of the quote in particular is lifted from Transformer
manga artist Naoto Tsushima's Twitter feed, where he made the comment
in regard to the first Allspark Almanac. In the first of many
non-Transformers references to come, mirror-universe Swindle's quote
mentions a minimum
it was in such a facility that Futurama's
Leela grew up.
Pg 9a – Jim Sorenson's Decepticon alter-ego is an Animated version of Octus, a member of the Decepticon Triumverate from the UK Marvel Comics story, “The Fall and Rise of the Decepticon Empire”. Creator Lee Sullivan designed Octus to transform into a Dalek from Doctor Who, and that alternate mode intention is faithfully carried on here, with it being referred to by its technical name, a Mark III Travel Machine. Bill Forster's alias, meanwhile, is Megadeath from the UK annual story “The Magnificent Six” (no doubt a choice based on Forster's propensity for heavy metal), but he has been redesigned from his original hideous appearance into a form based on Beast Wars Neo character Big Convoy. His alternate mode is a Guylos EZ-038 Assault Craft, an appropriately elephantine mech from Zoids.
Pg 9b – Reference is made to Alignment, a novella produced by Simon Furman for the UK convention Transforce in 2001 to end the story of the Marvel Comics universe and lead into the Beast Era. Produced without Hasbro's approval, it was a non-canon endeavour... until now, as the introduction refers to it as “true and accurate”! This is also the book's first use of the “universal stream” classification system introduced in the Fun Publications Transformers Collectors' Club exclusive story, “Withered Hope”. We'll be seeing a lot more of this as we go on.
Pg 11 – Hidden away in the bottom right of this page is the first frame of a flip-book style animation that runs through the Almanac. It depicts pencil-sketch versions of Optimus Prime and Megatron's transformation stock footage.
Pg 13 - “Bakapor” is Russian for “dumbass”.
Pg 15 – Safeguard's powered up form (which appeared only in the “First (and Second) in Flight” comic that came with the Jetfire and Jetstorm toys, not in the cartoon itself), is referred to as Burning Justice, a pejorative nickname used by TFWIKI.Net for the “burst of super-power brought on by intense emotion” that is a popular trope of anime.
Pg 16 – Yoketron's bio refers to numerous Cybertronian martial arts: Crystalocution (originally mentioned from G1 Banazi-Tron's bio), diffusion (from Dreamwave's More Than Meets the Eye handbook), Tekkaido (from the BotCon 2001 exclusive Arcee's bio) and Circuit-Su (from Bugly's bio, also mentioned in the Animated cartoon itself). Two new arts are introduced here: Tahtib-tron and Laser Lathi, named for Tahtib and Lathi, types of cane-fighting from Egypt and India, respectively. To close out the bio, Jazz quotes a song lyric: “I believe the protoforms are our future,” a paraphrased vesion of Whitney Houston's “Greatest Love of All”, which contains the lyric “I believe the children are our future”.
Pg 17 – Here we learn that Kup (designed for the Animated cartoon but not implemented; finalized specially for inclusion in the Almanac) gave Optimus, Sentinel and Elita-1 their names, as we saw Sentinel do for Bumblebee, Bulkhead and their classmates in “Autoboot Camp”. Kup is puffing on a cy-gar, as his Generation 1 counterpart did in IDW Publishing's “All Hail Megatron”.
Pg 18 – Shockwave uses the measurement of mechanometers, which originated in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “City of Steel” and saw use in the previous Almanac. He also refers to Cyber/Nano Algorithms, or CNA, the Transformer equivalent of DNA introduced in IDW Publishing's “Spotlight: Arcee”. Operation: Doppelganger is explained on page 61; it's a pretty generic name, but I'm going to guess it's a reference to a similar operation that went down in BattleTech.
Pg 19a – Numbers on Wheeljack's page:
15.71976% - 15/7/1976 is author Jim Sorenson's birthday
65483-2483-32 – don't know yet, but very similar string of numbers appears on page 34 referring to another body type, and I have identified its source, so that may help point us in the right direction for figuring out Wheeljack's.
Pg 19b – Mainframe's profile refers to the Software Wars, a conflict mentioned in Generation 1 Guzzle's packaging bio. It also name-drops Extempaxia, a Quintesson from the Transformers Universe Presents: The Wreckers comics, and Spanner, the Autobot technician responsible for building the space bridge in the Generation 1 Marvel comic.
Pg 20 – Kup refers to Animated versions of Generation 1 characters Skram and Blaster, and Fun Publications' Cybertron creation, Quickslinger. Blaster is fond of Quarian thrash, music mentioned in the previously-discussed Alignment, and Ragnarok & Roll, the title of an episode of The Real Ghostbusters. Kup also name-checks The Fallen, one of the Original Thirteen Transformers introduced in Dreamwave Productions' The War Within: The Dark Ages comic, and the Pit, the analog of Hell in the Transformers' belief system, first mentioned in the Beast Wars animated series. We also learn that Animated Rodimus was previously known as Hot Rod, like his Generation 1 counterpart.
Pg 21 – Kup refers to turbofoxes, Cybertronian wildlife first mentioned in Generation 1 Mirage's bio, and swears by Xal, a deity sworn to by the second generation Cybertronian Mindset in issue #9 of Marvel's Generation 2 comic. He notes that Rodimus has become known as the chosen one, an epithet borne by Generation 1 Rodimus and first mentioned in the episode “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 1”. Rodimus's team are here given the name Team Athenia, named for the planet introduced in that same episode (and later actually named in the Japanese dub of the episode), paralleling the Decepticons' planet-named Team Chaar. The two teams were seen in the Animated episode “TransWarped” where they battled in an asteroid belt, here dubbed the Magnokor belt after the magnetic-powered character from Inhumanoids. The Cosmic Rust infection that claimed Rodimus in that episode was named on-screen, but for the sake of completeness we'll remind you that's a reference to the Generation 1 episode that introduced the disease and bore its name.
Pg 22 – Dyson Cube is a webcomic. The Tower of Pion is a structure in the Autobot capital Iacon, introduced in Dreamwave's The War Within comic books. Ballobots are used in the Cybertonian sport of basketrek, mentioned in issue #21 of Marvel's Generation 1 comic. Ironhide's chant of “Brawn get mad! Brawn smash!” is, of course a reference to the Incredible Hulk. Cybertronian watering holes Maccadam's Old Oil House (first introduced in the UK Marvel comics, but has since made the leap to most every continuity going, including the Animated cartoon) and Widow's Cafe (an establishment that debuted in the Fun Publications story “Gone Too Far”) are also mentioned. Finally, Ironhide uses batch proto-initiator as a substitue for “mother” (as in, “brother from another”), a term first used in issue #3 of IDW Publishing's Infiltration series.
Pg 24 – Red Alert uses a Transfer Interlink, like BotCon character Apelinq. Like Ratchet before her, she trained at Protihex Medical Mechanical; the Orbital Torus State of Protihex was first introduced in Dreamwave's The War Within comics. Red is famous for inventing a cure for Gold Plastic Syndrome, a fan-coined nickname for an unfortunate condition that blights many Transformers toys made from swirly metallic gold plastic that causes them to crumble with age.
Pg 25 – The song on this page is titled “The Iron Baron”, the pre-production name of the original Generation 1 Grandus. It is sung by Rosanna (who will appear in a couple of pages), and appears courtesy of Twincast Productions, Ltd, named for Twincast, the upgraded form Blaster took in the Japanese series, The Headmasters. It refers to Belzone (a cancelled Generation 2 Autobot Power Master), the Void (the nothingness left when Unicron consumes a universe) and the Stonehenge Kick (Grandus's special attack, shared by his Generation 1 predecessor). I imagine its probably a parody of an existing song, but can't suss out what.
Pg 26a – Among the Cybertronian drugs Beachcomber indulges in are syk (from the UK Generation 1 Marvel comic story “Secrets”), simultronics (from IDW's “Spotlight: Blurr”), Angolmois (Unicron's life-force, from the Japanese Beast Wars II and Beast Wars Neo series) and crysmag (from the Headmasters two-parter, “The Final Showdown on Earth”). Rattletrap supposes Beachcomber's sensors would be work a few shanix, a kind of currency favoured by Death's Head in the UK Generation 1 comics.
Pg 26b – Highbrow met his end in the Manganese Mountains, a Cybertronian locale introduced in Marvel's Headmasters comic-book mini-series.
Pg 27a – Diablock Rock is named for Takara's LEGO-like building block line, Diablock. We also get our first mention of Trypticon prison, named for the Generation 1 city-bot Trypticon, just as the other Cybertronian structures from Animated, the Metroplex and Fortress Maximus, are.
Pg 27b – Dug Base should be recognisable as sharing a body design with Grandus. That's because he's based on the Brave toy of the same name, who was a redeco of the original Grandus toy. He appeared in vehicle mode in the Animated episode “Decepticon Air”.
Pg 28a – Dai Atlas is training Drift, a samurai Autobot introduced in the pages of IDW's “All Hail Megatron”.
Pg 28b – Animated Sky Garry shares the same attack as his Generation 1 predecessor, the Mystery Circle Punch. He was second to Big Bang, an Autobot commander designed to be the star of the 1991 Takara Transformers toyline, who was ultimately shelved and never produced (until Fun Publications revived the concept nearly twenty years later); Sky Garry was also a member of the '92 toyline, hence the reference. The translation of his name is a bit of a crack at the fact his name makes no dang sense. Here, it is given a meaning in an old Destron dialect; “Destron” was the traditional Japanese name for the Decepticons until recently. Page 222 sheds a bit more light on this reference.
Pg 29a – Illegal services Rattletrap is known to provide include shock pop datatrax (shock pop is a type of music enjoyed by the 2007 live-action movie's Grindcore; datatrax are a form of data storage introduced in the Beast Wars animated series), prismaball tickets (a sport played by the Generation 1 Nebulan Recoil) and forged S.T.A.R.S. indento-cards (S.T.A.R.S. was a “club” of sorts back in the mid-1980s, advertised through flyers packed in with Transformers toys full of exclusive stories and mail-away offers, including just such a card). He is in a relationship with a “botanist”... more on this on the next page!
Pg 29b – Allicons are creations of the Quintessons, who first appeared in The Transformers: The Movie. They were unnamed in the film, and were later named by Dreamwave Productions. Seaspray fought some during the War of the Waves on Antilla; the War of the Waves was the name of a Transformers Universe action figure two-pack containing Air Raid and Storm Surge, while Antilla was a planet introduced in the Generation 1 cartoon episode, “Cosmic Rust”.
Pg 29c – The Autotroopers' body type is 256-OZU-004, the ID number of Jake Sully from the James Cameron movie, Avatar.
Pg 30a – The aforementioned botanist! Animated Botanica began life as an April Fool's joke of sorts by character designer Derrick J. Wyatt, when he put her and several other characters into an image posted on his blog and challenged readers to figure out which characters were real and would be appearing in the third season, and which weren't. Botanica was a fake-out, but she's canon now, baby! She is noted to be in a relationship with Rattletrap (a callback to the original Rattrap and Botanica hooking up in Beast Machines), and she once rid the planet Daffodil II (mentioned in the letters page of issue #326 of the UK Generation 1 comic) of an infestation of Morphobots (from the Generation 1 cartoon episode, “Quest for Survival”).
Pg 30b – Like Kup before him, Wheelie was designed for the Animated cartoon, but not used, then finalized for the Almanac. He was found on Zeotopia, named for the world of the Hasbro toyline Xevoz, by the Silver Guardians, named for the security force from Power Rangers: Time Force.
Pg 31 – Pipes was another “April Fool's” character, designed to look like Huffer in reference to Generation 1 Pipes, who was a remold of Generation 1 Huffer, and both characters have the same special powers as their G1 progenitors. Huffer and Pipes are also designed after Nintendo's famous brothers, Mario and Luigi; their dialogue here is written with Italian accentuations.
Pg 32 – While describing Tracks, Beachcomber refers to two types of Cybertronian fauna: glitch mice (from the Generation 1 cartoon episode “S.O.S. Dinobots”) and nano-fleas (from issue #2 of the Transformers Universe comic).
Pg 33 – Cliffjumper not trusting Mirage is a reference to their Generation 1 ancestors going through the same clash in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Traitor”.
Pg 34a – Glyph graduated from Drouhard University, named for Brianne Drouhard, the character designer who created her. She is an Archaeometrist like her Generation 1 counterpart, and is known to have studied Gorlam Prime (introduced in IDW Publishing's “Spotlight: Nightbeat”). Her closeness with Tap-Out is a reference to the fact that both their Generation 1 counterparts were BotCon exclusives in the same year.
Pg 34b – Tap-Out's body-type is a 65356 9292 346 shell, the barcode number of the Animated Bumblebee toy. As an Archaeometrist, Glyph uses several fictional languages while describing Tap-Out.
The Fantoman giants are the Zentraedi from Robotech, who hailed from the planet Fantoma. Their in their language, “Dentalla” means “ally” or “friend”.
“Too doo nakotae” means “To life immortal” in the language of the aliens from the War of the Worlds TV series.
The Tenctonese are the alien race from the TV series Alien Nation.
The final language used is Klingon from Star Trek. “Ql'yaH” is one of the foulest words in the Klingon language, which defies translation. “pujwl'” means “weakling”. Apparently, Klingons would say Tap-Out has “batlh”, honor.
Pg 35 – Dude, Searchlight is basically Batman. He once beat up the criminals responsible for Operation: Burning Sky (named after a Generation 1 UK comic story) and deposited them in front of the Forum of Enlightenment (introduced in Dreawave’s The War Within comics).
Pg 36a – Volks is based on a Brazilian recolor of the original Generation 1 Bumblebee toy. Tap-Out calls him a LadiesBot217-type, in reference to the screenname of live-action Transformers movie character Sam Wiwicky, “LadiesMan217”.
Pg 36b – Carrera is based on a Brazilian recolor of the original Generation 1 Cliffjumper toy. In describing him, Bumper refers again to syk (see pg 26) and the Iacon 5000, a race name-dropped in the letters page of issue #326 of the UK Marvel comic. The measurement of weight, the kilo-unit, is used; this originated in the Animated episode “Rise of the Constructicons”.
Pg 36c – Furao is the name given to Generation 1 Bumblebee in the Brazilian translation of the Generation 1 comics. It means “Ferret” in both Portugese, and as this entry notes, “Old Malignus”; “Malignus” was the evil faction from the Brazilian version of the Transformers toyline, but see page 222 for some expanded meaning of this. Also referenced are the Flash Frenzy (personal spaceship of Cybertron Skyfall), Elba (a prison planet from the Challenge of the GoBots episode, “Escape from Elba”), cyber-ducks (mentioned in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “The Rebirth”, Part 1), a solar sail (a feature of the Armada Mini-Con Oceanglide) and the Blot Nebula (from the on-package bio of Classics Jetfire).
Pg 37a – Hubcap is friendly with an Animated version of Generation 1 Action Master Jackpot; their Generation 1 counterparts are good chums too, as seen in the Fun Publications story, “Gone Too Far”. Shanix are mentioned again (see pg 26), as is Aquillian crystal (a form of currency from issue #44 of the Marvel Generation comics), a protocol droid (a type of droid from Star Wars) and a paranoid android (Marvin, from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy).
Pg 37b – Searchlight is definitely channelling Frank Miller’s Batman! He mentions Bhul, a planet introduced in IDW’s “Spotlight: Arcee”.
Pg 38a – Autosanrin was the winning entry in a Transformers character design contest held by Japanese magazine Comic Bom Bom in 1986.
Pg 38b – Lightbright appeared in the Animated cartoon twice, but like most of the crowd fillers, went unidentified. She gets a name here for the first time, based on the Hasbro toy, Lite-Brite.
Pg 38c – Lickety-Split has the same story behind her as Lightbright, and also gets a name from another Hasbro toy, in this case, My Little Pony. Her entry references a Golden Disk (a Cybertronian artefact introduced in the Beast Wars cartoon), Orgenon and the Galactic Olympics (both from the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 1”), and Buzz Lightyear (from Toy Story, also immortalized as part of Takara’s Disney Label Transformers sub-line). The popular measurement of time, the nanoklik, introduced in Beast Wars, is also used.
Pg 39a – As previously intimated on page 25, Animated Rosanna is a singer, just like her counterpart from the Kiss Players series. She’s Cybertron’s number two star next to Windy (a female Micromaster from Takara’s final Generation 1 series, Operation: Combination, who was indeed a popular singer), and was formerly part of the Velocitron Band (a band from the planet Velocitron, as seen in the Cybertron episode “Champion”) with the Rock Bots (an unproduced idea for Transformers that transformed into musical instruments). Her songs include “Alive a Soldier” (a song from the Japanese version of the Animated cartoon), “Principle of Badness” (from Beast Wars II) and “There Is No Border in the Universe” (from the Japanese Generation 1 cartoon, Super-God Masterforce). Her hometown is Ky-Alexia, first mentioned in Dorling Kindersley’s guide to the live-action Transformers movie universe, which is just off the Mithril Sea, an ocean mentioned in the bio of Universe Rook. Her model number is 09262 8765 001, the secret agent number of Brock Samson from The Venture Brothers.
Pg 39b – As Transformers wouldn’t know the names of Earthly animals, Ramhorn is here called a Nosoron, the Polish name of Beast Wars character Rhinox; Steeljaw is a Cybercat, a species named in the Cybertron episode “Challenge”; and Zaur is a Brontobot, one of the preliminary names for Generation 1 brontosaurus Dinobot Sludge.
Pg 40 – Mega-dronex is not a Transformers term, but it’s got to be a reference to something.
Pg 41 – Exo-frame is a fairly generic term, but given the references to it found in the first book, I’ll bet this is a specific callout to the mechs of ExoSquad. Tutorbot 2.0 replaces the original, based on the Diagnostic Drones from Beast Machines. Reference is also made to a Project: Powermaster, named for the original Generation 1 toys with transforming engines; the toy design section towards the end of the book sheds a little light on this!
Pgs 42-43 – Sari’s powers include a Hyperspace Mallet (a joking name given to the popular anime trope that involves little girls pulling huge mallets out of nowhere), a Master Blade (the personal weapon of Generation 1 Fortress Maximus from the Headmasters series), a Skyboom shield (named for the Mini-Con shield weapon from Armada; the previous Almanac also gave Sentinel Prime’s shield this name), azusa skates (named for the Azusa Skatepark in California) and Micron Boosters for enhanced jumps (named after the series of blind-packed Mini-Con figures released by Takara; “Microns” is the Japanese name for “Mini-Cons”).
Pg 44 – “Single Green Robot” refers to the movie, Single White Female.
Pg 46 – Blackarachnia calls Waspinator a “circuit-glitched diode-blown dimwit” the same string of epithets hurled at Generation 1 Hot Rod by Kup in The Transformers: The Movie. She also notes that his stingers are “cranked up to eleven”, a popular term from the movie This Is Spinal Tap.
Pg 48 – Strika’s title, General of Destruction, was previously noted in the bio for her included in issue #24 of the Official Transformers Collectors’ Club magazine. It’s a reference to the typical Japanese title for Decepticon leaders, “Emperor of Destruction”. Her being armed with reciprocating cannons is a call-back to the original Beast Machines Strika toy, which was also equipped with them. She also has a small reserve of Forestonite, the mysterious energy source from the Japanese Generation 2 manga, “The New Battle!!” It is also clarified that her Team Chaar is named for the planet the team is stationed on, which was introduced in the Generation 1 cartoon episode, “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 1”.
Pg 49 – We’ve already covered Cosmic Rust (see pg 21), which was one of Oil Slick’s creations in the Animated universe, per the comic story “Bots of Science”. Here, another of his creations is named: the reverse evolution virus, which originated in the Micromaster Collection storyline. The remark about him training with an Autobot motorcycle refers to his on-package bio, which claimed he trained with Prowl as a Cyber-Ninja, something the show didn’t touch on. Cyclonus concludes his description of Oil Slick by saying “over, finished”; this is what you call a “Furmanism”, one of the many popular repeated phrases in the works of Transformers comic book writer Simon Furman.
Pg 50 – Cyclonus’s backstory heavily hints that he shares a similar history with his Generation 1 counterpart, coming from a future where Megatron has been rebuilt into Galvatron. He has transwarp circuitry (used for bending space and time, introduced in the Beast Wars cartoon and later played a big role in Animated) in his reactor linkage, a part of Transformer anatomy that it wouldn’t be pleasant to stuff anything up, according to issue #57 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic. Cyclonus is armed with an oxidizing laser, like his G1 counterpart originally was, and blades that can generate waves of blinding, corrosive black light, like the black beam gun that G1 Cyclonus upgraded to when he became a Targetmaster. The comment about Starscream's circuity and self-preservation algorithms seems to suggest Cyclonus is a rebuilt Skywarp, who was last seen floating in space in “TransWarped”, just as G1 Skywarp may or may not have become G1 Cyclonus (but let's not open that can of worms).
Pg 52 – Blackout is armed with four zander cannons, named for IDW Publishing writer Zander Cannon. Beast Wars Rampage and Scavenger and Beast Machines Che all had galva-conductors, but Blackout has them in his particle-blasters, which makes them feel like a reference to Generation 1 Galvatron, who had a particle cannon. His astro blasters are named for the Mini-Con weapon from Armada. His seismic energy dischargers are noted to be reverse-engineered from an “oddly misplaced Cybertronian” named Crasher, a reference to the Challenge of the GoBots character well known for her seismic stomps, along with an indication that she might have somehow wound up in the Animated universe. Further, the specific name of these dischargers comes from the bio of Fracture, the live-action movie toyline’s own Crasher homage.
Pg 54 – Spittor mouth tendrils are given the name Legion Tentacles, after the hideous appendages that sprout from the mouths of the monstrous Legion in Takara’s creepy Kiss Players series.
Pg 55 – Many fans were reminded of Generation 1 Bombshell and his mind-controlling cerebro-shells when Dirt Boss was introduced, and the Almanac doesn’t let them down, officially giving Dirt Boss’s devices that name. The Generation 1 homages continue as the Constructicons are hinted to be building something called Devastator.
Pg 56 – Soundwave’s black and red avatars are referred to both as electrostatic copies, named for the toy redeco they represent (“Electrostatic Soundwave”), and Soundblaster duplicates, after the upgraded form Soundwave took on in The Headmasters, to which these avatars are coloured in homage. His primary avatar is called a sonic white version of himself, after the “Sonic White” coloration of the Music Label Soundwave toy that its colours are based on. The virtual world he trapped the Autobots are in is called both Realvision (from issue #48 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic) and a makeshift InfoCore (after the massive computer system from Beast Machines).
Pg 57 – Ratbat and Laserbeak are both describing as having the vampiric and cowardly characteristics of their Generation 1 predecessors, respectively. The Scraplets, tiny robots from issue #29 of the G1 Marvel comic, are mentioned, as is the measurement of distance, the hic, from the UK annual story “The Magnificent Six” and used in the previous Almanac.
Pg 58 – Reflector has a Photon T-34 cannon, named after the live-action movie Real Gear Robot. Their hard-light hologram powers are a reference to a strange scene in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Divide and Conquer”, in which the original Reflector’s components disappear in a flash of light. The measurement of time, the megacycle, is used: it originated with Beast Wars, but has since become widely used.
Pg 59a – Smelting Pools and a personal pickaxe weapon were the hallmarks of the original Generation 1 Straxus, who first appeared in issue #17 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic.
Pg 59b – Slapper is another of the aforementioned “April Fool” characters posted to Derrick J. Wyatt's blog, a redeco of Spittor, just as Robots in Disguise Slapper was a redeco of Beast Wars Transmetal Spittor. Energon Discharge Powder would be the Transformer equivalent of sneezing powder; when afflicted with a fit of “sneezing” in the Beast Wars episode “The Low Road,” Rhinox would involuntarily discharge energon. It is Vrobian in origin; Vrobians were psychic vampires from issue #63 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic.
Pg 60a – Porter C. Powell’s limousine was designed to resemble the Tonka GoBot Tux, and the Almanac follows through with this idea in designing a robot mode for it, giving him the GoBot’s characteristic top hat. The robot is named Stretch, which was the alternate name the GoBots cartoon gave to Tux; his banishment across the dimensions seems to hint that Animated Stretch and GoBots Stretch could be the same character. Furthermore, the reference to quantum-string vibration levels appears to hearken back to the GoBots' method of cataloguing alternate universes, which they refer to as “levels”, as seen in the Challenge of the GoBots two parter, “Invasion from the 21st Level”, and revisited in the Fun Publications story “Withered Hope”.
Pg 60b – Flip Sides is another April Fool character, an Animated version of a Decepticon sleeper agent available exclusively through online retailer eHobby, and a redeco of the cassette mold also used to create the original Rosanna. Fans noted that unfortunate similarity in colors between Flip Sides and Rosanna, who were not released terribly far apart, but the Almanac has played with that similarity here, with Blurr’s report suggesting that Animated Flip Sides and Rosanna could possibly be one and the same.
Pg 61a – Scalpel is an Animated version of the Revenge of the Fallen character, having started life as a piece of fan art Derrick J. Wyatt drew for his blog.
Pg 61b – While the original Generation 1 Magnificus was not a clone in his bio, he was made into one by Dreamwave Productions in issue #1 of their ongoing series, and that idea is carried on into Animated Magnificus. Project Doppelganger is explained and CNA is mentioned again (see pg 18 for both); CNA is also referred to by another name, hard-coded design schematics, a term from issue #2 of Transformers Universe Featuring the Wreckers. Magnificus’s knack for dealing with organics is presumably a reference to the closeness between G1 Magnificus and the organic alien Ga’mede. Reference is also made to the planet Ijurn, mentioned in passing in Dreamwave’s Micromasters mini-series.
Pg 63a – In describing his part in the events of “TransWarped”, Shockwave name-checks several Decepticon leaders who did not appear in the series: Straxus (seen earlier in the book), Gutcruncher (a high-ranking Generation 1 Action Master), Skystalker (Generation 1 Micromaster with aspirations on leading the Decepticons), Deathsaurus (leader of the Decepticons in Japan’s Victory series) and Clench (European-exclusive Decepticon leader from the interstitial period between G1 and G2). Clench is noted to command Team Kaon, named for the Decepticon city on Cybertron introduced in Dreamwave’s The War Within comics. It appears to break the format of teams being named after planets, until you remember that Animated has a lot of the Decepticons living on a planet they have named “New Kaon” after being exiled from Cybertron. In the same breath, Megatron’s team is noted to be “Team Earth”.
Pg 63b – As in the first Almanac, the text which appears in the headers and footers and behind the numerous illustrations on many of the episode guide pages is Cybertronix, a symbol language developed for the Beast Wars cartoon that hides hidden messages to be decoded. The font on this page, and that used on all Decepticon internal logs, is the “Predacon” font. Messages on this page include:
The header contains the first of
several Ask Vector Prime questions. “Ask Vector Prime”
was a segment that Hasbro ran on its Transformers website when the
Cybertron series was current, allowing readers to pose
questions for the ancient Transformer Vector Prime, which he would
often give obtuse, vague, point-missing or silly answers to. This
Q:Who is the mysterious figure in the Animated opening credits in Japan?
A: Which one? A:There are a lot of characters in there, like Optimus Prime and Blitzwing.
The question refers to a bizarre cloaked figure of shadow seen in the new opening sequence created for the Japanese version of Animated, and also seen on the back cover of this very book. Vector Prime gives one of his characteristically unhelpful answers.
Hidden behind the crushed Blurr cube are the lyrics to the Johnny Mandel song, “Suicide is Painless”, best known as the theme tune of the TV series M*A*S*H.
The footer contains another Ask Vector Prime:
Q: Does the ship used by Scorponok in the Marvel Comics have a name?
A: It was called the Semper Tyrannis.
Pg 64 – This partial episode summary for “TransWarped” takes the form of the Headmaster's account on Yatter, the Transformers equivalent of Twitter introduced in the Collectors' Club exclusive story, “Eye in the Sky”. Yatter is copyright Alternate Reality, Inc, the computer programming company from issue #40 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic. The Beast Wars II Moon toy appears in the title bar, as does the Japanese ID number for Raiden, C-131. The page prompts users to post with the order “Report to me at once!”, the command Optimus Prime gave Ironhide in the opening scenes of The Transformers: The Movie. The arrow-shaped Start box is taken from Generation 1 instruction leaflets. Headmaster's screen name ends in 42, which is both the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and a nerd cliché so tremendously tired that the Headmaster's use of it unsurprising. He has 26632 followers, after the Star Trek vessel, the NCC-26632. He follows 137 people; there are entirely too many possibilities for me to figure out what this is referring to!
The lists of top trackers and trending topics are, of course, full of references:
The top four trackers all post replies to the Headmasters Yatts in the main body of the article, with userpics screencapped from episodes or other media that depicted them. These four are in_your_face_furg (Furg was the doorman at Dancitron in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Auto-Bop”), SJ2Sweet (Sally Jones from Energon), President_for_Life (one of the many titles of Generation 1 Arab dictator Abdul Fakkadi) and Maggie_M_999 (Maggie Madsen from the live-action Transformers movie). The other trackers are ravagekitteh (the actual in-fiction Yatter account of Shattered Glass Ravage; also exists in real life on Twitter), SacredPalutena (Palutena from the Kid Icarus video games), Where_am_I_Hibiki (“Where am I now?” was a question often asked by perennially lost Ranma ½ character, Ryuga Hibiki), triffid_venom_stings (referring to the titular carnivorous plants from “Day of the Triffids”), Wallace_Enoch (Enoch Wallace from the Clifford D. Simak novel “Way Station”), HeecheeTechGuy (the Heechee are aliens from the works of Frederik Pohl) and Ignignokt108 (Ignignokt is one of the Mooninites from Aqua Teen Hunger Force; 108 is a number with great significance in many Eastern religions and has as a consequence become another of those “nerd numbers” like 42. You might be most familiar with it as the sum total of the mysterious string of numbers from Lost).
Trending topics include Digital Doom (from a 1987 Generation 1 pack-in leaflet which depicted a battle known as “Digital Doom on the Highway to Destruction”), Ear Fungus (an infection often detected in visitors to the Sector 7 mobile command unit, part of the “alternate reality game” promotion for the first live-action movie), #TFARP (the hashtag of the real-life TransFormers Animated RolePlay), WrecknRule (catchphrase of the Wreckers), Shortpacked! (webcomic of Transformers fan David Willis), #FIRRIB and #FIBRIR (an ancient fandom debate revolving around the colors of Generation 1 Rumble and Frenzy; they mean “Frenzy Is Red, Rumble Is Blue” and “Frenzy Is Blue, Rumble Is Red”), I Risk My Life For Earth (the title of an episode of the Japanese Transformers series, The Headmasters), Darque Chocolate (the villain of the murder mystery dinner from the Official Transformers Collectors Convention 2004), Battle Protocol (the title of the first episode of Robots in Disguise), #ertd (the nonsensical acronym for the Extra-Terrestrial Response Division from Panini's Armada comics), ThisManThisMayonnaise (Donny Finkleberg's proposed “Potato Salad Man” graphic novel from issue #15 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic) and Rotate Blade (a fandom nickname for Beast Wars Dinobot's spinning tail-blade weapon, derivied from an infamous fanfic).
65 – Xal
referenced again (see pg 21), and the Autobots' ship is finally
revealed to have a name: the Orion,
after the spaceship captained by Generation 1 Bumblebee in
Dreamwave's ongoing series. This begins a trend that will be
developed fully later in the book!
Cybetronix on this page, like all the others presented as Autobot records (this one is a page from Bumblebee's private journal) is in the “Maximal” font. This is not alone, however: also present is the “Ancient Autobot” font, which was created by author Jim Sorenson in the late 90s, based loosely upon some characters seen in the Generation 1 episode, “Cosmic Rust”. This font was later used in the “Allspark Wars” online game that was part of the promotion for the live-action movie. These passages are:
The Cybertronix in the header are the lyrics to the opening theme of Underdog. When criminals in this world appear...!
The Ancient Autobot in the middle of the page reads “Help me Cortana”; Cortana is a character from the Halo video game series.
The Cybertronix behind the images of damaged Bumblebee is an excerpt from the instruction manual to the video game The Bard's Tale, dealing with wizardry.
The Ancient Autobot in the bottom left reads “animalia arthropoda insecta hymenoptera apidae apinae bombini bombus” the kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, subfamily, tribe and genus of... the bumblebee. See what they did there?
Pg 66 – As in the first Almanac, the timecodes for the Autobot incident reports correspond to Star Trek stardates. For this episode, it's the Deep Space Nine episode “Melora”. Cybertronix on this page:
The header translates into lyrics from Rush's “The Spirit of Radio”.
The text behind the damaged Bulkhead decodes as lyrics from the Kinks' “Come Dancing”.
The footer translates to “34 degrees 57 S, 150 degrees 30 W”, co-ordinates of latitude and longitude denoting the location of the titular island from the Jules Verne story, “The Mysterious Island”.
Pg 67 – Starscream uses the swears frag and smeg; the former is a fairly common sci-fi swear that saw use in the Beast Wars cartoon, while the latter is from Red Dwarf. He call his teeth mecha molars (a term used in issue #41 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic), and refers to the SynthAxe, a rare real-life musical instrument from the late 1980s. His AllSpark-endowed weapon form is called a Targetmaster configuration, after the Generation 1 Transformers who featured transforming weapons.
Cybertronix on this page:
header is an “Ask Vector Prime”.
Q: Is Classics Killzone the same character as Alignment Killzone?
A: They come from divergent timelines but they are both aspects of the same being.
This refers to a Decepticon character named Killzone, who cameos at the end of the Fun Publications story “Gone Too Far”, and who coincidentally had the same name as a character from the at-the-time-non-canon Alignment. Isn't it an amazing coincidence that author Jim Sorenson was involved in an argument on the TFWiki over whether or not they should be considered the same character?
Behind Starscream's weaponized head are the romanized Japanese lyrics to “Night of Summerside”, the theme tune to romance anime Kimagure Orange Road.
The text behind Megatron's head translates as the chorus from David Bowie's “China Girl”.
footer is another “Ask Vector Prime”:
Q: Were the early Matrix bearers in FFOD 4 named?
A: Yes. The first narrator was named Primon, the Alpha Prime. Next was Prima who fought Sentinel Major. The third was named Prime Nova, or Nova Prime. He was followed by Guardian Prime. Next was Zeta Prime, and then Sentinel Prime. The last narrator was Optimus Prime.
This question refers to a long scene in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Five Faces of Darkness”, Part 4, in which Rodimus Prime communes with past Autobot leaders inside the Matrix. They were unnamed but for some descriptors in the episode script (“ancient robot”, “brooding robot”, etc) and here, the Almanac has given them all the names of pre-existing past Primes from other continuities. Prima, Prime Nova and Sentinel Prime were first named in issue #65 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic; Nova Prime would later be introduced in IDW Publishing's comics, and is here connected explicitly with his old namesake. Zeta Prime was another IDW addition to the list, who went on to appear in the War for Cybertron video game, while the mysterious Primon was has only ever been mentioned once before, in the BotCon-exclusive “Reaching the Omega Point” storyline, as a predecessor of Prima. Alpha Prime is here given as Primon's title; it originates with Dreamwave's More Than Meets the Eye guidebook, where it was given as the name of the first Matrix bearer, who was succeeded by Guardian Prime.
68 – This
final “TransWarped” summary is time-coded 47254.1,
stardate of the Star
Trek: The Next Generation episode,
“Dark Page”. The battle at the mine from “A Bridge
Too Close” gets the same time-code as it did in the first
Almanac, stardate of the episode “Invasive Procedures”,
and other events from the three parter are coded with the stardates
of “Interface” and “Phantasms”. In a non-Trek
reference, Prime comments that Bulkhead “fastballs”
Bumblebee, referring to the trademark move of X-Men Wolverine and
Colossus, in which the latter hurls the former like a
Cybertronix on this page:
The header translates into the English lyrics of the original 1960s Astro Boy theme tune.
Behind Megatron's head are the romanized Japanese lyrics of the Ranma ½ theme, “Yappappa Yappappa Iishanten”.
The footer is a set of co-ordinates, “48 degrees 51 32 N, 2 degrees 23 56 E”, location of the Pere Lachaise Cementary in Paris, where rock legend Jim Morrison is buried.
Pg 69 – The timecode for “Three's A Crowd” is the stardate of the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode, “Necessary Evil”. Cybertronix on this page:
The header is the opening narration of Xena: Warrior Princess.
Just below the title is a set of co-ordinates, “38 degrees 58 4.58 N, 106 degrees 2 42.61 W”, which point to the basin of South Park, Colorado, where the titular TV show is set.
A string of text is hidden down the left hand side of the page, almost unnoticeable in the page fold, which, when taken together with the smaller string beside the picture of the warehouse, reads: “Climb in the back with your head in the clouds and you're gone,” lyrics from the Beatles' “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”.
Behind the images of Dirt Boss's components are the lyrics to the Pinky and the Brain theme tune.
The text behind the disassembled cars is the first paragraph of Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle's novel, “Footfall”. It reads: “The lush tropical growth of the Kona Coast ended abruptly. Suddenly the passionflower vines and palm trees were gone, and Jenny was driving through barren lava fields. "It looks like the back side of the Moon," she said.”
Pg 70a – The header and footer of the “Three's A Crowd” summary are “Ask Vector Prime” segments.
Q: Is the Challenge of the GoBots cartoon canon for Transformers? Alignment? How about G.I. Joe?
A: GoBots are, yes, though in a very distant part of the multiverse. Gobotron is an aspect of Primus, and the Unicron defeated in Primax 703.02 Gamma hailed from that dimension. Alignment is canon for the Primax 984.0 Gamma universe. G.I. Joe is a complicated case. The events depicted in the G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero cartoon are canon for Primax 984.17 Alpha. So are C.O.P.S., Inhumanoids, even Jem and the Holograms. The events depicted in the 155 issue Marvel series are canon for Primax 984.0 Gamma. Otherwise, it varies.
Phew! This is a big one! It revisits the universal stream classifications demonstrated in the book's introduction; the streams referred to here are the worlds of the Devil's Due G.I. Joe/Transformers crossovers (Primax 984.0 Gamma; the Unicron who appeared in this world had a strangely organic brain, hence the retcon that he comes from the GoBots universe, where the GoBots share that feature), the Generation 1 Marvel Comics (Primax 984.0 Gamma) and the Generation 1 cartoon (Primax 984.17 Alpha). It also clarifies the complicated inter-relationship between Transformers and several other Hasbro properties from the 80s who had crossovers of varying degrees (some explicit, some of only the most vague implication) between each other.
second segment reads:
Q: If a Mini-Con toy is repainted into a new figure and not called a Mini-Con, is he still a Mini-Con?
A: Sort of. A toy with a Mini-Con symbol and a powerlinx hardpoint is always a Mini-Con, but the CHARACTER might not be. In other words, the Quadwal version always is, but the Primax or Aurex one might not be.
Jim Sorenson continues to prod an argument he once had on the TFWiki over whether or not characters Beta Maxx and Caliburn (repainted Mini-Con toys not explicitly characterized as Mini-Cons) are actually Mini-Cons or not. The first Almanac said they were. We also get another reference to a concept the first Almanac introduced: the Quadwal universal stream, home of the “real world” that we live in.
70b – Several
pieces of Transformer anatomy are named in First Aid's report on
Ultra Magnus's injuries. Many of them are generic computer and
machine terms that have been used regularly throughout Transformers
history (like “struts”, motherboard” and
“rotators”) but some of the more specific callbacks
the Generation 1 cartoon episode “City of Steel”), boron
the G1 “War of the Dinobots”), piston
“Autoboot Camp”), manga
the G1 episode “Fire on the Mountain”) and fuel
in issue #29 of the G1 Marvel comic). Magnus's armor is noted to be
made of Cyberium,
a metal mentioned in the Animated
your own adventure” book series, “Be The
Cybertronix on this page:
The header is a set of co-ordinates, “32 degrees 49 32 N, 117 degrees 13 41 W”, denoting the location of the Art Expressions Gallery in San Diego, address of IDW Publishing.
The caption for Magnus's shattered shoulder reads: “We are like dwarfs on the shoulders of giants”, paraphrasing a quote from philosopher Bernard of Chartres. See how that works?
The caption of Magnus's severed arm says: “IT'S ONLY A FLESH WOUND”, which was the reaction the Black Knight had in Monty Python and the Holy Grail when his own arm was chopped off.
The final caption denoting a wound to Magnus's pelvis translates as the title of the Huey Lewis and the News song, “It's Hip to Be Square.” Grrooooan.
71 – The
timecode for “Where Is Thy Sting?” is the star date of
the Star Trek: The
Next Generation episode,
“Force of Nature”. Bumblebee drops a reference to his
this concept from the original Generation 1 cartoon (mentioned in the
episodes “Divide and Conquer” and “The Autobot
Run”) was analogous to what modern fiction calls a spark (the
essence of Transformer life); Beast
on-package bio explained that the spark was part of the larger laser
core, and Bumblebee's crack here seems to line up with
Cybertronix on this page:
The header translates into the lyrics of the theme tune to the 1950s Zorro TV series.
The caption beside the image of the alley reads “WE DID IT”. It also appears to have... the number 12 at the beginning and end of the sentence? I'm puzzled, but I'm going to assume it's referring to the song of the same name from Dora the Explorer.
The footer is the co-ordinates “40 degrees 15 8 N, 58 degrees 26 23 E”, location of the “Door to Hell”, a crater in Turkmenistan where natural gas has been burning since 1971.
72 – The
timecode for “Five Servos of Doom” is the start date of
the Star Trek:
Deep Space Nine episode
“Second Sight”. The second season episode, “A
Fistful of Energon”, is given timecoded with the star date of
“Timescape”. Prowl credits Yoketron with the saying: “The
seeds of the future lie buried in the past”,
the mantra of Optimus Primal from Beast
and restates the first Almanac's note that Lockdown's shop features
cable made of cybertitanium,
a metal introduced in the Japanese tech specs of Generation
Cybertronix on this page:
The header reads: “Here I come to save the day!”, catchphrase of Mighty Mouse.
Down the right-hand side of the page is: “I know kung fu”, a quote from The Matrix.
The text behind the signal beacon reads: “We will control the horizontal. We will control the vertical. We can roll the image; make it flutter”, an excerpt from the original opening narration of The Outer Limits.
The footer hides the co-ordinates “35 degrees 53 N, 14 degrees 27 E”, which point the way to Malta Island.
“Predacons Rising” is timecoded with the star date of the
Star Trek: The
Next Generation episode
“Parallels”. The events of “Where Is Thy Sting?”
are given a different code here than on their own page, which is the
star date of the Next
“Attached”. The timecode the first Almanac gave to
“Megatron Rising, Part II” is used again to refer to that
episode; it's the star date of the Deep
Space Nine episodes
“If Wishes Were Horses”.
Cybertronix on this page:
The header is a quote from Aldous Huxley's “Brave New World”, and reads: “The greater a man's talents, the greater his power to lead astray. It is better that one should suffer than that many should be corrupted. Consider the matter dispassionately, Mr. Foster, and you will see that no offence is so heinous as unorthodoxy of behaviour. Murder kills only the individual–and, after all, what is an individual?”
The text under the header reads: “Why don't you pass the time by playing a little solitaire?”, a quote from The Manchurian Candidate.
Down the right-hand side of the page is “Yossarian Lives”, an anti-war slogan derived from the Joseph Heller novel, “Catch-22”.
On the left side of the transwarp lab image, the text says: “Bandersnatch 7, Jubjub bird 4”, two creatures from Lewis Carroll's poem, “Jabberwocky”. I'm unsure of the reason for the numbers.
On the right of the lab image is “MINDCRIME”, title of a concept album by metal band Queensryche.
The footer contains the co-ordinates “38 degrees 52 15.56 N, 77 degrees 3 21.46 W”, location of the Pentagon.
Pg 74 – Poor Waspinator's note makes a few Beast Wars callbacks, in addition to those inherent in the episode itself. Waspinator claims the “universe hates him” (a lament the original Waspinator made in “Deep Metal”), and makes reference to a floating mountain and a set of standing stones, alien artefacts featured in “The Trigger” and “Chain of Command”, respectively. This adds fuel to the fire that Waspinator and Blackarachnia may have actually wound up on the Beast Wars planet, but as Derrick J. Wyatt said after “Predacons Rising” aired, Jim Sorenson clarified that this isn't the literal intent of the references. Meanwhile, the ammonite in the top right and the crab at the bottom are colored like the Beast Wars Neo characters Dead End and Rockbuster, again respectively.
Pg 75 - “Human Error, Part I” gets timecoded with star date of the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode, “Inheritance”. Cybertronix on this page:
Under the episode title is the dedication from Bram Stoker's Dracula, “TO MY DEAR FRIEND HOMMY-BEG”.
On the right-hand side of the page, behind the header and the Sound Wave Toy image, is the first paragraph from the instruction manual to the video game Legacy of the Ancients.
Pg 76 – This whole summary for “Human Error, Part II” is, of course, written in homage to L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The snake coiled around the border in the lower left is one of Bill Forster's pets, named 1812 after a robot drone from Farscape. The critter in the bottom right, meanwhile, is based on the Transformers Device Label flash drive toy. This feline figure has been released in various colours as Generation 1 Ravage, and Beast Wars Tigatron and Cheetor; here, it's being rendered in the colour scheme of a lesser-known Generation 1 kitty, the Pretender Beast Catilla.
Pg 77 – Unfortunately, the people who pinned up these fliers won't be seeing these three dogs again, as they have all met their ends. Pis was killed by Wilder in the Super-God Masterforce episode “Rage!! Little Devils with No Need for Rules”, Patch (unnamed in his appearance) and his owner were slain by Shockwave in issue #65 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic, and the third, nameless dog was the victim of Decepticon super-science in issue #8 of the Fight! Super Robot Lifeform Transformers manga. The Seymour mentioned on the garage sale sign below is presumably Seymour Simmons from the live-action Transformers movies. He probably needed the money after he lost his job!
78 – The
energy cloud from “Decepticon Air” is here called The
named for a nebula from Fred Saberhagen's novel,
“Berserker's Planet”. It has been given this name by “the
a nickname for the alien Quintessons, who debuted in The
Transformers: The Movie,
and are referenced several more times in the Almanac.
Coded writing on this page is all related to Sentinel Prime's voice actor, Townsend Coleman:
The Cybertronix behind the Sonic Jammer 3000 is an extended original passage, which takes the form of a fictitious introduction to The Tonight Show, for which Coleman was the announcer for many years. It reads: “Coming up on The Tonight Show with David Endocrine, lobbyist Nick Naylor, actor Maxwell Donahue, and musical guests Dethklok. Also, stupid human tricks.” Endocrine is a parody of real-life talk show host David Letterman who featured in Frank Miller's Batman graphic novel, The Dark Knight Returns. Naylor is a tobacco lobbyist from the Christopher Buckly novel, “Thank You For Not Smoking”. Donahue appeared in the Remington Steele episode, “Stronger Than Steele”. Dethklok are the stars of the Adult Swim cartoon, Metalocalypse. “Stupid Human Tricks” is a real Tonight Show segment.
The Cybertronix on the left reads “Cowabunga”, catchphrase of Coleman's character Michelangelo on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
The Ancient Autobot across the bottom of the page translates as “Animalia Arthropoda Chelicerata Arachnida Parasitiformes Ixodidae Ixodoidea”, kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, subfamily, tribe and genus of... the Tick. Har har.
Pg 79 – Oh boy, here we go. This three-page summary of “This Is Why I Hate Machines” takes the form of an issue of “Alternity Today”, a multiversal newspaper named for the Alternity, the hyper-evolved Autobots of the future who watch over the multiverse, from the Japanese toyline of the same name. This page is absolutely busting at the seams with references. Let's take 'em as they come.
The Cybertronix on the left of the header says “Bored now,” a quote from the evil vampire version of Willow from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The price is also in Cybertronix: it's 1.00 Shanix (see page 26).
The actor playing Shockwave in Sentinel's propaganda film is revealed to be an Animated version of Hoist, in reference to Generation 1 Hoist's stint as an actor in the G1 cartoon episode “Hoist Goes Hollywood”.
Rosanna's concert was in the Rad Zone, an irradiated area of Cybertron from issue #78 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic.
Nearer, My Spark, to Thee paraphrases the hymn, “Nearer, My God, to Thee”. This article mentions Zebres (Headmaster component of Cybertron Base from Takara's Robot Masters series), Aero-Bot (of the Playskool Go-Bots) and the X-Dimension (home of the Takara-exclusive repaints, the X-Dimension Mini-Cons). We also get a new universal stream designator: Yayayarst 201.11 Beta. This refers to the previously-unnamed Playskool Go-Bots continuity family, and appears to single out its starting point as the release of the 1-2-3 Transformer toy, Rescue Roy.
Secret Agent Men is titled after the song by Johnny Rivers, “Secret Agent Man”. This article recounts an attempt by Mainframe (from the “Rise of the Chevy Autobots” online game) to capture the heads of the Los Bogos project (Los Bogus was a resort from the Robots in Disguise episode, “Commandos”) that was foiled by Sector 7 (from the live-action Transformers movie; the story continues on page S7, ho ho). The project leaders are Stuart G. Power from Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future, Doctor Braxis from Challenge of the GoBots (here named “Thadius”, but in the GoBots cartoon, his name was actually Zebediah), Amadeus Sharp from Bionic Six, Emmett Benton from Jem and the Holograms and Crystal Kane from Centurions.
Across the Great Divide is the title of a 1976 movie. This article kicks off by establishing for the first time a universal stream designator for Robots in Disguise, Viron, when describing Decepticons Dreadwind and Smokejumper (whose universal stream of origin is traced to the release of their toy in April 2003). They have “locked the Lunar Battle of 2011 in a repeated time loop”, prompting the Autobots to invent the Challenge Blaster to intervene. The reference here is a deeeeep one. The Lunar Battle spoken of is the battle seen in the opening sequence of The Headmasters (it plays every episode, hence, repeating time loop, you get it?) The precise universal stream designator given, however, is the airdate of the Headmasters episode, “Explosion on Mars!! Maximus Is in Danger”, which was when the opening was modified to interact with the real-life Challenge Blaster light gun, which children could fire at the screen to gain points.
Something Organic This Way Comes paraphrases the quote from Shakespeare's Macbeth, “Something wicked this ways comes.”
The general plot of the “Unchained Memory” article is a parody of the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Starscream's Brigade”, but with Autobots instead of Decepticons. The story continues on page G2 (for Generation 2). Characters and places mentioned are:
Ulchtar (the pre-release name of G1 Starscream) from the continuity of “The Energon Within”, the video game included on the free CD-ROM that came with the first wave of Universe toys (seriously!).
The satellite penitentiary of the planet Zone (introduced in the Victory episode “Get Back Gaihawk”, when the planet was still known as Micro) from the continuity of the Super-God Masterforce, Victory and Zone mangas, which splinters off from the Japanese cartoon timeline with the publication of the first issue of Masterforce.
Screechwing and Spiketail, unreleased redecoes of Beast Wars Sonar and Stinkbomb planned for the Beast Machines toyline.
Nightprowler and Leatherhide, unreleased redecoes of Beast Wars Cheetor and Soundwave planned for the Universe toyline.
Albitron, an aborted exclusive for the unofficial convention Transcon² who would have been a redeco of the alligator version of Beast Wars Megatron.
This quintet's combined form, Toxitron, an unreleased redeco of Generation 2 Laser Optimus Prime. In case you didn't figure it out, the theme of the team is unreleased redecos!
In the “@ALT2DAY.com” inset box, the Voltronic Multiverser (an amped-up version of the Voltronic Galaxer from the G1 cartoon episode “Blaster Blues”) is reported to have discovered a new universal stream: Xobitor 1085.06 Alpha, the world of the Robotix cartoon (which premiered on October 6, 1985). “Xobitor”, of course, is just an anagram of “Robotix”. More importantly, Alt2Day.com is a real website – click here for annotations for it!
“Is That a Whig” finally gives a surname to Alexis from the Armada cartoon; in naming her “Thi Dang”, the Almanac realizes the Vietnamese ethnicity originally intended for the character. The illustration is of the character as she appeared in the Energon series, and she has finally begun moving towards her childhood dreaming of being President. The writing behind her is the language of the Visitors from V; translated, it is their tagline, “We are of peace”.
Across the bottom of the page is an ad for “Ai-surance”, a parody of insurance company Esurance Inc, complete with Robots in Disguise T-AI (or “Ai”, as she's known in Japan) in the role of mascot Erin Esurance. Other insurance companies are parodied in the ad, primarily GEICO, which is represented by jokes based around their two most famous mascots: a gecko and a caveman. In reference to the gecko, the parody company is named after a breed of gecko, TOKAY, while a Generation 1 Sharkticon takes the place of the caveman in their famous slogan, “Even a caveman can do it”. Other companies spoofed include Kaiser Permanente (Kaiser Sozenente, named for the master criminal from the movie The Usual Suspects) and American Mutual (AllSpark Mutual).
Pgs 80-81 – The references just keep coming in this double-page newspaper spread.
We'll start with the horoscopes on the left, named Astroscopes for the Armada Mini-Con of the same name. The map at the top of the column is the map from the movie Time Bandits. The signs are Xal (see page 21), Chronarchitect (an ancient god and overseer of time from the BotCon storyline, “Reaching the Omega Point”), the Void (see page 25), Shokaract (megalomaniacal BotCon 2000 exclusive; those born under this sign are “hunters”, which Shockaract was before gaining his power), the Core (the organic core of Cybertron from Beast Machines; the end of Beast Machines is referenced with the implication that Megatron is a Voidian), Serpent O.R. (an android version of the G.I. Joe emperor, from the Devil's Due G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers universe), Yggdrasil (a huge tree on the planet Greengard from the Beast Wars Neo manga), the Key (Sari's AllSpark key), the Golden Disk (see page 38) and Aquarius (a planet from the Beast Wars Neo episode, “Personal Combat in the Deep Sea!!”). Their respective Cybertronian months are Ferruneon (“Ferrum” is Latin for “iron”, but I'd like to think there's more to it than that), Navitaneon (perhaps from the Japanese Beast Wars NAVI computers), Primaneon (evidently from Prime, Prima, Primus...), Inrituneon (?), Chokoneon (from Chokon Power, the mysterious energy of Super-God Masterforce), Zetca- (a Godmaster warrior from Masterforce; the hyphen suggests this might have been supposed to be “Zetcaneon”), Boltaneon (from Boltax, guardian of the Underbase in the G1 Marvel comics), Rokuneon and Heptaneon (“roku” is Japanese for “six” and “hepta” is Greek for “seven”, but these are the eighth and ninth months – apparently, even Cybertron's calendar fell foul to a revision that left some of the months' names making no sense, like the Gregorian calender did with September onwards) and Bahneon (?). The illustrations of the constellations themselves are mostly self-explanatory, but in a particularly cute reference, the stars for Cronarchitect form the shape of a racoon with an hourglass: a reference to the time-manipulating Beast Wars Neo character, Heinrad. In the Beast Wars Neo manga, Heinrad served the “Ruler of Time and Space” - perhaps this being is the Chronarchitecht himself!
The weather report below the episode summary mentions the Devastator Winds (for which Revenge of the Fallen Devastator is named, according to his bio), which are buffeting the Tri-torus area; “Torus states” is a term for the regions of Cybertron introduced in Dreamwave's The War Within comics. The report is given by Pipo of the Micromaster Rescue Patrol Team from Victory. The winds have brought all landcross service to a halt; Landcross is the combined form of Victory's Multiforce.
NY6991 is the badge number of Officer Ricky Walsh in Die Hard: With a Vengance.
The weather forecast reveals a few Cybertronian days of the week, all named after writers who have worked on Transformers cartoons: Wolsol (Marv Wolfman), Dixosol (Buzz Dixon) and Wisesol (David Wise).
The article about the Robotix universe continues on this page, with the features of the universe being described; the planet from the show, Skalorr, is a version of Cybertron, and it's computer, Compu-core, is a node of Vector Sigma. It is noted that Cybertron was also once known as Skalorr in Primax 698.20 Theta, the world of the BotCon 1998 script-reading, “Visitations”. Mention is also made of Xobitor 286.0 Gamma, the world of Marvel's one-issue Robotix comic book. All of these discoveries were made by a synthoid Protector (synthoids are artificial humans from the G.I. Joe cartoon who also appeared in the Geneation 1 episode “Only Human”; the Protectors are the agents of the Alternity; Protector Elita Seven is also a synthoid) named Hacker X-9 (named after Real Gear Robot Hacker X-3) from the continuity of the 2007 live-action movie's “Capture the Cube” online video game. Additionally, X-9 was also the Japanese ID number of the Beast Wars incarnation of Ravage; could this Protector be Ravage in a synthoid body?
Another new universal stream provided by this article is Gargent, the world of the Tonka GoBots. Streams mentioned are 984.08 Alpha, the Challenge of the GoBots cartoon, and -1084.22 Alpha, which is surely supposed to be the evil GoBots mirror universe from the episode “Transfer Point”, though the airdate doesn't line up. The Gargent cluster was discovered by Advenas and Cheetor of the TransTech universe, which is here given the designator of Nexus for the first time.
The stock ticker at the bottom begins with a chart for Dirk Manus Industrial Average; Manus was a con man from the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Money Is Everything”. References in the ticker are: ConSec (from the movie Scanners), GENOM (from Bubblegum Crisis), O.C.P. (from Robocop), Rearden Steel (from Ayn Rand novel Atlas Shrugged), Umbrella Corp (from the Resident Evil video games), Ziktor Industries (from V.R. Troopers), Rekall (from Total Recall), Veridian Dynamics (from Better Off Ted), Damage Inc. (the title of a Metallic song), ZikZak (from Max Headroom), Universal Exports (from the James Bond movies), TyrellCo (from Blade Runner), Gizmonic (from Mystery Science Theatre 3000), Asimov Fnd. (named for Isaac Asimov's Foundation series of novels), Biffco (from Back to the Future II), Rossum (from Dollhouse, itself named for Rossum's Univeral Robots, the Czech play that created the word “robot”), Summako (from the 2009 remake of The Prisoner), ウェイランド湯谷 (Weyland-Yutani, from the Alien film series), Yoyodyne (originally from Thomas Pynchon's V), Blue Sun (from Firefly), Spacely Sprockets (from The Jetsons), Extensive Enterprises (from G.I. Joe), SkyNet (from the Terminator movies), Curious Goods (from the Friday the 13th TV series), Strickland Fuels (from King of the Hill), S-Mart (from the Evil Dead film series) and Sirius Cybernetics (from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, mispelled “Sirus”).
If you can believe it, even the numbers on the stock ticker are references! Once divested of their decimal points, they represent certain issues of different comic books: the negative numbers denote an issue in which a character of note died (specifically, characters who have REMAINED dead, or at least, were still dead at the time the Almanac was published!), while the positive numbers are of issues in which someone made their first appearance. They are:
Spectacular Spider-Man #107 - Jean DeWolff
X-Men #108 - Moira MacTaggart
Amazing Spider-Man #121 - Gwen Stacy
Uncanny X-Men #136 - Jean Grey
Amazing Spider-Man #294 - Kraven the Hunter (who has since been resurrected!)
Cerebus the Aardvark #300 – The title character
Uncanny X-Men #486 - Corsair and D'Ken
Action Comics #601 - Katma Tui
Batman #673 - Joe Chill
Detective Comics #818 – Ventriloquist
Action Comics #870 - Jonathan Kent
Action Comics #871 – Doomsday
Flash #106 - Gorilla Grodd
Strange Tales #110 - Doctor Strange
Batman #121 - Mr. Freeze
Amazing Spider-Man #129 – Punisher
Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #134 – Darkseid
Incredible Hulk #181 – Wolverine
Batman #181 - Poison Ivy (181 appears twice)
Action Comics #242 – Brainiac
Uncanny X-Men #244 – Jubilee
Uncanny X-Men #266 – Gambit
Adventure Comics #283 - General Zod
Thor #337 - Beta Ray Bill
Batman #357 - Jason Todd
Amazing Spider-Man #441 - Mattie Franklin
Detective Comics #523 - Killer Croc
Pg 81b - And finally, the crossword. There are some mistakes present in it that impede solving it, which we will note as we go along. Many answers simply involve abbreviating the clue into an acronym (for example, the answer to 14 across, “Isotropic weight”, is simply “IW”). The answers are, in order and with notes on their origin where appropriate:
1. Transformation Lock Virus, employed by Megatron in Beast Machines.
13. PI (Private Investigator)
15. HP (Hit Points)
20. Vilna, capital of Lithuania
26. Fermi, one of the scientists who worked with J. Robber Oppenheimer on the Manhattan Project.
30. YA; Yuss is a province of Cybertron from the UK annual story, “The Magnificent Six”
31. HI, abbreviation for Hawaii, where the Aqua Raider Team battled in the Armada “Linkage” mini-comics
32. Novaroid, servants of Dark Nova from the Battlestars storyline
39. RN (registered nurse); Paradron Medics appeared in the Generation 1 cartoon episode, “Fight or Flee”
40. IX (nine)
41. Laos, where Starscream was spotted on March 12th, 1982, in the “Hungry Dragon” alternate reality game that promoted the live-action Transformers movie
42. Attacktix – misspelled as “Attactix”
46. KC; another goof, this ought to be KK for “King Kong”. Rather than point fingers, though, let's pretend it stands for “King Con!”, issue #54 of the Marvel Generation 1 comic, in which Iguanus scales the Empire State Building.
49. Yr (year)
54. OO; “00 gauge” is the most popular scale of model railway, at 1:76 scale. How do we make the railway connection? The “Grandpa” mentioned in the clue was a train in the Robots in Disguise episode, “Secret Weapon: D-5”.
55. Mrs, a reference to Micromaster Discharge’s failed plan to marry team-mate San D-Go
61. TV, a reference to the Generation 1 Junkions and the fact that their leader Wreck-Gar was voiced in The Transformers: The Movie by British star Eric Idle. This clue is actually 61 DOWN, not across.
62. Cybernet Space Cube, the computer-generated addition to the Generation 2 cartoon
66. Vis, as in “vis-scanners”, and so forth
68. Ca (carbon)
70. AK, Alaska, where these two Mini-Cons were located in the Armada Playstation 2 video game
72. ET (extra-terrestrial)
78. Frijoles, born of a silly little joke on the TFWiki, which gave an article to the “Frijoles”, after woeful Unicron Trilogy stereotype Carlos exclaimed “Holy Frijoles” in the Energon episode, “Cybertron City”
83. Ice; water is the cure for Scraplets (see page 57)
87. Knok, Autobot Powermaster partner to Doubledealer, who had a second bat-like Powermaster named Skar. Here, Skar is revealed to be a Nebulon bolt-bat; Cybertronic bolt-bats were mentioned in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “S.O.S. Dinobots”
89. Ming, of Flash Gordon fame
93. Zod, from Challenge of the GoBots
95. Wig, referring to the time Beast Wars Megatron donned a judge’s wig in the episode “Other Victories”
99. Lion, referring to Beast Wars II “father and son” duo, Lio Convoy and Lio Junior, who both transformed into lions
101. Virulent Clones, who were spawned on the planet Ceti Alpha Seven in the BotCon exclusive story, “Descent into Evil”
105. SD, South Dakota, location of Mount Rushmore
108. Lio, a misspelling of Victory Autobot Victory Leo’s name
109. PSA, referring to the public service announcements Bumblebee, Tracks and other Autobots starred in for the Generation 1 cartoon
110. Rou, from BotCon exclusive character Roulette
111. AZ, Arizona, location of the Grand Canyon
112. TAI, referring to T-AI, the Autobot computer from Robots in Disguise, who identified the Generation 1 computer, Teletraan I, as her father
114. NBE, from the live-action Transformers movies
118. Syli. The Quintessons had no specific currency in past fiction; Sorenson admits he used this word, the currency of Guinea from 1971 to 1985, to make 90 down fit.
119. Armornecking, clearly drawn from the human term “rubbernecking,” used in the bio for Generation 1 Getaway
125. Nov (November)
130. OD (overdose)
134. DL (down-low)
135. Orbit Disruptor Cannon, from the Generation 1 episode “B.O.T.”
142. Tarn, a Cybertronian city and Shockwave’s hometown per the UK annual story “State Games”
143. NJ, New Jersey, noted to exist on the planet Ganzvort in the bio of Generation 1 Rewind)
144. TOE (Theory of Everything)
145. Fuzors, the Beast Wars characters who were a fusion of two animals
150. IED (Improvised Explosive Device)
151. EPA, the Environmental Protection Agency, whose agent Walter Peck bedevilled the Ghostbusters in their film
154. TN, Tennessee, though the Ark-19 was only crippled over Tennessee, and actually crashed in the Gulf of Mexico, in IDW’s Devastation series
157. Gobotron, home planet of the GoBots. A controversial question, claiming Wheelie comes from Gobotronic parentage!
162. Coda, the dropped sub-title of the final four issues of IDW’s All Hail Megatron series
164. Ambassador of Destruction, grandiose title of Super-God Masterforce Deceopticon Overlord
2. R Infinity Accelerator, from IDW’s “Spotlight: Ultra Magnus”
5. Rio, Portugese for river; this clue carries on the joke that the Cybertronian language “Malignus” is the same as Earth’s Portugese (see page 36)
6. III, the Intelligence and Information Institute, from the Generation 1 Marvel comics
7. Owled (groan)
10. Impactor, leader of the Autobot strike time the Wreckers, who first appeared in the UK Marvel Comics story “Target: 2006”
11. UFO; the Autobots wouldn’t believe Daniel Witwicky when he claimed to have seen a UFO in the Headmasters episode, “Return of the Immortal Emperor”
19. Whalers; Generation 1 Pretender Longtooth developed a fixation on a whale-like alien in issue #64 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic, while Jonagar was a ship Kup flew into the mouth of a space whale, per a story he told in the cartoon episode “Chaos”
20. Vroom; the Asphalt Wars were mentioned in his bio
24. Byracrane, a bear Transformers cult from the Beast Wars Neo manga
34. Isaac – Sumdac, that is!
36. Sty; Beast Wars Razorbeast transforms into a wild boar
46. Koraja, as named in the Marvel Comics Headmasters mini-series
48. Pie, an ancient fandom joke
55. Mt (mount)
56. Sparkdrinker, the axe wielded by Cybertron Metroplex
58. RCCL, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Trypticon fired on a ship off the coast of Carbombya in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Thief in the Night”, though that ship belonged to “Luxury Cruises”
59. Sure, as in Generation 1 Targetmater Sureshot
63. EL (extra life)
67. Iran; Prince Jumal appeared in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Aerial Assault”, but the Middle Eastern country he ruled was not named
73. Timaeus Project, the experiment that essentially transformed the Autobots of the future into the Alternity, from the toyline of the same name
76. IL, Illinois, saved by the Air Defense Mini-Con Team in the UK Panini Armada comics
81. Abel, killed by Sixshot in the Headmasters episode “Terror! The Six Shadows”
82. Gator; alloygators were first mentioned in the BotCon exclusive story “Games of Deception”, and Generation 1 Action Master Krok’s partner Gatoraider is here retconned into being one
84. Ebi, Japanese for “shrimp”. Like the Malignus/Portugese joke, the book present “Destron” as being the same as Earth’s Japanese (see page 28)
90. Godzilla, mentioned with this descriptor in the third issue of Marvel’s Generation 1 comic.
92. EOD (Explosive Ordinance Disposal)
96. GNP (Gross National Product)
103. TSS; the Toxic Sludge Swamp comes from Generation 1 Snap Trap’s bio
104. Cain, from Zone
105. Salad; lead sulphide crystals were a favourite of the Mecannibals from the Generation 1 Marvel comic
107. Bar; Maccadam’s has been covered already and will be seen again the book, but the Black Hole Bar and Grill appeared in issue #52 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic
115. EN (the letter n)
117. Colander (Strain-R is not an Allspark mutation who has appeared in any previous fiction)
118. Bit of a screw-up here: there is no 118 down. There is, however, a two-letter word running dowards one square right of 118 across, with no number, to which this clue is supposed to be attached. The anawer is “Ye”.
121. Mobat, a G.I. Joe vehicle
123. CNS (central nervous system)
137. Teens; the Headmaster Teens were Japanese-exclusive Headmaster heads who came without a body of their own
140. PITE; Powerglide referred to Astoria Carlton-Ritz as a “pain in the afterburner” in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “The Girl Who Loved Powerglide”
145. FGD (flue-gas desulphurization)
146. UOO (University of Oxford). Heath Blaisedale appeared in the Generation 1 audio book, “Sun Raid”
147. ZBR; Zobovor is the screen name of Transformers fan Dave Edwards
149. RTF (rich text format)
153. Ado, from the title of Shakespeare’s play
158. RD (red dwarf)
The word jumble unscrambles to read “neutron laser demagnetizer cannon”, the weapon of Screech, Action Master partner to European exclusive character Take-Off. Why is it a “good tool for an eagle scout”? Because that’s what Take-Off’s bio calls Screech!
Pg 82 - “Endgame, Part I”
is timecoded with the star date of Star Trek: The Next Generation
episode “Lower Decks”.
Prowl's shuttle is given the name Dawn
after the ship from The
Cybertronix on this page:
The header reads: “Do not waste your time searching for those wasted years”, lyrics from Iron Maiden's “Wasted Years”.
Behind the Dawn Treader are the lyrics to the opening theme of Speed Racer.
The text behind the listening device is the opening paragraph of the instruction manual to the video game Mars Saga.
The footer reads: “Second star to the right, and straight on till morning”, the directions to Neverland from Peter Pan.
Pg 83 – The final episode summary contains the following Cybertronix:
The header is an Ask Vector Prime:
Q: Was Dion rebuilt into anybody?
A: Which Dion? Celine Dion? I loved Titanic.
It refers to the Generation 1 cartoon episode “War Dawn”, in which Orion Pax is rebuilt into Optimus Prime. Fans have often wondered if Orion's friend Dion was similarly rebuilt, with Ultra Magnus and Ironhide being potential candidates. Vector Prime is... not helpful. :)
To the left of the damaged Starscream is “As you from crimes would pardon'd be, let your indulgence set me free,” a quote from Shakespeare's The Tempest.
Behind Starscream are the romanized Japanese lyrics of “Ano Hi Ni”, theme tune to the anime Video Girl Ai.
footer is the final Ask Vector Prime:
Q: Is the unique digital entity mentioned in Armada Primus?
This refers to the opening narration of the first episode of Armada, which mentioned a “unique digital entity” responsible for creation the Transformers.
Pg 89 – Fans began calling the rock mosters from “TransWarped” Rock Lords as soon they appeared on the show, after the Tonka GoBots spin-off that featured the questionable concept of transforming rocks. Here, the name is canonized, and Tutorbot 2.0 pops in to tell us that the Animated Rock Lords are just another species native to the planet Quartex, where the Tonka Rock Lords live.
Pgs 92-93 – Ninja Gladiator appeared in “Where Is Thy Sting?”, complete with background featuring TORQ III (from the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Day of the Machines”) and fighters Antron (from Micronauts) and Snake-Eyes (from G.I. Joe). The Almanac expands massively on the premise of a video game starring characters from other franchises, and this naturally leads to a big ol' pile of references.
Ninja Gladiator is produced by Flippy-Floppy Industries, the company that produced the Multi-World video game from issue #24 of the Generation 1 Marvel comic.
The main plot of Ninja Gladiator involves the Inhumanoids, monsters who were the star of their own self-titled Hasbro toyline and cartoon, attacking Metro City, setting for Robots in Disguise. To the quartet of Inhumanoids from the series (Metlar, Tendril, D'Compose and Ssslither) is added Hojoni, a Godzilla stand-in who appeared on a billboard in the Generation 1 episode “Kremzeek!” The game's warriors have assembled because the Inhumanoids' traditional enemies, the Earth Corps, are busy helping Emment Benton from Jem and the Holograms battle the Lunartix Empire, aliens from G.I. Joe.
The game's barcode is 91939, a secret code used by Batman in the Justice League episode “A Better World”, itself a reference to the publication date of Batman's first appearance in Detective Comics, September 19, 19239.
The game's playable characters are Hudson from Gargoyles, Big Boss from C.O.P.S., Felina from SWAT Kats, Slaughter Steelgrave from Starriors, Gizmo from Superbook (here given his Ukranian name Robik), Miles Mayhem from MASK, Brett from Turbo Teen and HGBG, short for Hideous Giant Brain Guy, the affectionate nickname given by TFWiki to an alien with a hideous giant brain from the Marvel UK comic story, “Deadly Games!” His attack, the Ego Whip, is a psychic attack from Dungeons and Dragons.
Each character's “special move” code is a real code from a real video game. Big Boss's is the super armor code from Megaman X4, Felina's is the survival mode code from Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo Revival, Steelgrave's is the infinite ammo code from Call of Duty: Finest Hour, Robik's is the invincibility code from the Sega 32X version of Doom, Mayhem's is the code for “Dark Metamorphosis” from Castlevania: Symphony of Night, Brett's is the combination for “Zelda's Lullaby” in Zelda: Ocarina of Time, HGBG's is the “Get the Tank” code from Grand Theft Auto III, and the “secret code” at the bottom of the manual is the ubiquitous “Konami Code” included in many of that company's games. Hudson's, however, eludes me (and seems very, very complicated!).
Pg 96 – The brand name of Sari's scooter, Secord, is derived from the real name of pulp comic hero the Rocketeer, Cliff Secord. Because it's also a jetpack, get it? The brand of turbines, Bader, appears to be a reference to famous WWII fighter pilot, Douglas Bader.
Pg 97a – “Thanatos-class” ships are named for the Thanatos, the ship commanded by the Generation 1 Predacons from IDW's comics. “Doomsday-class” ships, meanwhile, after named for the Doomsday, the Decepticon ship seen briefly in the opening of Armada attempting to stop the Mini-Cons fleeing Cybertron. Named Doomsday-class ships are the Nemesis (the Decepticon flagship from the Generation 1 cartoon, first named in Beast Wars) and the Darksyde (the Predacons' ship from Beast Wars). Thanatos-class ships are armed with omega whip cannons (from the manga “Full Throttle Scramble Power!”) and starblitz torpedoes (among the armament of the aforementioned Thanatos from IDW). Strika's ship is named the Kalis' Lament, after the starshpi from the Fun Publications story “The Dark Heart of Sandokan”, itself named for the Cybertronian city that was overrun by zombies in the UK Marvel comic story, “City of Fear!”.
Pg 97b – In addition to the recognizable Dai Atlas, the “avatars” for the Great War board game are Animated versions of Cybertron Wing Saber, Operation Combination's Scrash and Armada Sideways. The original Scrash was never actually seen; fans believe that had he been, he would have been based on the European-exclusive toy Skyquake, and this Animated character bears out that theory. Sideways is a particularly interesting one: the Armada character is a known dimension-hopper - every other character with the name Sideways is a variation of this guy, except for Revenge of the Fallen Sideways. A square on the board game overleaf confirms that Animated Sideways came from another dimension (indicating that he is the Armada character), while the body design he is sporting in the illustration on this page shares many similarities with ROTF Sideways, suggesting that they are the same character after all! More on this on page 144!
Pgs 98-99 – Hoo mercy! Guess we'll just have to go through this square by square!
The Japanese text by Yoketron reads: “Musabetsu Kakuto Ryuu”, or “Anything-Goes Martial Arts”, from Ranma ½.
The “new recruit” pictured is an Animated version of Generation 1 Bombshell.
Vehicon is a planet mentioned in the Robot Masters storyline, home of Reverse Convoy.
Antilla is a planet from the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Cosmic Rust” (see pg 30).
Bk'n is a planet mentione in the UK annual story “Another Time and Place”.
Zone is, of course, the planet from the series of the same name.
Combatron is a world from the Fun Publications story, “Force of Habit”.
Planet V is the Autobots' planetary headquarters from Victory.
Velocitron is one of the colony worlds from Cybertron.
Beta is a star system containing Beta 4 (mentioned in The Transformers: The Movie) and Beta 9 (from the Fun Publications comic, “Wings of Honor”).
Animatron is a new name, apparently derived from Animatros, the Japanese name for Jungle Planet from Cybertron. Perhaps an attempt to give the planet a real English name?
The Salvvatan system appeared in IDW's “Spotlight: Metroplex”.
Gigantion is another of the colony worlds from Cybertron.
The Vespa system was were Beast Wars Rattrap worked as a miner, according to the episode “Dark Voyage”.
Pages 114-115 establish that Omnitron is the world of Energon's Omnicons, seen briefly in a flashback in the episode “Survival Instincts”.
Paradron is a peaceful planet from the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Fight or Flee”.
An Animated version of Beast Wars Inferno.
Elba is a planet from Challenge of the GoBots (see pg 36).
Goo is a planet from the Generation 1 cartoon mini-series, “Five Faces of Darkness”.
The Underbase was a computer that was the focus a four issue arc in the Generation 1 Marvel comic, from issue #47-50.
take the right path here, and come back to the left one later! The
text beside these Animated
written in another font created in the 90s by Jim Sorenson, based on
graffiti symbols drawn by these two characters in issue #23 of the
Generation 1 Marvel comic. It reads:
“This game sucks tailpipe.”
“Hee hee, you said tailpipe.”
The Vestial Imperium appeared in the Fun Publications comic, “Cheap Shots”.
The Immobilizer was invented by Generation 1 Wheeljack in the cartoon episode “The Immobilizer”.
Just under Wheeljack is the game's copyright info: it is copyright (with a C in Ancient Autobot) Butler Brothers, a game company from Robocop. The code 934-TX was a running gag in Adult Swim show Sealab 2021.
An Animated version of live-action movie Frenzy.
Devcon was a bounty hunter from the Generation 1 cartoon episode “The Gambler”. Both he and Cryotek, a repaint of Transmetal 2 Beast Wars Megatron, appeared the BotCon Universe comic.
This is probably supposed to say Lithones, the inhabitants of the planet Lithone from The Transformers: The Movie, rather than Lithons.
Carzap would have been a repaint of Generation 2 Windbreaker released by Takara as part of their LEGO-esque Block Town line, but he got cancelled. This Animated character is even sporting his white, pink and purple paintjob!
Strike Force Alpha was a unit briefly seen in the UK annual story “And There Shall Come... A Leader!”
We've covered Cosmic Rust plenty by this stage (see pg 21).
Okay, let's go back to that left path. We start with Animated versions of Generation 1 Sideswipe and Sunstreaker, followed a few squares later by Hound and not-pictured Trailbreaker.
The Divine Light of Archa IX appeared in the BotCon Universe comics
Squadron X and the planet Pova both appeared in IDW's Last Stand of the Wreckers comic book mini-series.
Straxus smelted Generation 1 Scrounge in issue #17 of the G1 Marvel comic. The text besides Straxus reads: “Victory points are not dispensed to Autobots... only death!”, paraphrasing Straxus's most famous quote about mercy from that same issue.
An Animated version of Generation 1 Astrotrain.
An Animated version of Generation 1 Repugnus.
An Animated version of Super God Masterforce's Overlord. The illustration is based on Overlord's appearance in Zone, with his elaborate helmet, while his abandonment of the Decepticon cause is another reference to IDW's Last Stand of the Wreckers. The fact that he's drawn with Autobot-blue optics is probably tied into this.
And now our paths are lined up again, and we get the aforementioned square that notes Sideways's arrival from another dimension.
Tyrest is a region of Cybertron introduced in the UK comic story “City of Fear!
Gygax is a region of Cybertron introduced in the Fun Publications story “Dungeons and Dinobots”, named for Dungeons and Dragons creator Gary Gygax.
The Maximal Cybertronix behind Ultra Magnus in the top right is very small and mostly obscured, but what we can decipher of it tells us that it's a Transformers version of Winston Churchill's “We shall fight on the beaches” speech. It begins “We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in Vehicon. We shall fight on Antilla and Vespa...” and the majority of the rest is hidden behind Magnus.
Gold Plastic Syndrome (see pg 24).
The Eight Track is a ship from Fun Publications' “Wings of Honor”.
Floron III is a planet from the G1 cartoon episode “Quest for Survival”.
Animated versions of Moonradar (a Micromaster from Zone; the Japanese version of the American Countdown) and Gigatron (the Japanese name of Robots in Disguise Megatron).
The Atlas War on Combatron refers to King Atlas, ruler of the planet.
Machine Wars was a small Transformers toyline from 1997.
Pangea was the Japanese name of the starship on Gigantion in Cybertron. In English, it was the Lemuria.
See the crossword on page 81 for the Asphalt Wars.
The Vespa system and its mines agan.
The desert planet Praun appeared in the Headmasters episode “The Four-Million-Year-Old Veil of Mystery”.
The Lava Wars were also something mentioned in Last Stand of the Wreckers.
Alpha IX was mentioned by Kup in The Transformers: The Movie; it is home to petro-rabbits, for whom the Petro Wars are named.
Time Wars was the title of an epic serial from the UK Marvel comics.
Data Wars was the name of a Universe action figure two pack containing Clocker and Hardtop.
See page 30 for the War of the Waves.
The Riker War is named after Governer Riker from Victory.
I don't really have to explain Beast Wars to you, do I? Another reference to Animatron as well, furthering the notion that it's supposed to be a real name for Jungle Planet.
The Beta system again. The Dust Wars refer to its exceptionally thick dust, as mentioned in The Transformers: The Movie.
The Decepticon font beside Strika reads “Terminate”, the phrase her Beast Machines incarnation bellowed throughout the episode “Sparkwar Pt. I”.
The Tyrest Accord is an agreement from IDW's comics.
Now let's end by hopping over to the “Time Loop”. Here we see an Animated version of Revenge of the Fallen Skids falling victim to a Limbo parasite. Limbo was introduced in issue #100 of the UK Marvel comic; Generation 1 Skids met the same fate at the hands of its slimy inhabitants as his namesake here soon after.
Pg 102 – The sonic canyons are a region of Cybertron originally mentioned in Generation 1 Siren's bio. The first thing to be called a Matrix Chamber was, amusingly, not related to the concept of new Transformer life at all: it was an energy-generating device from the Robots in Disguise episode, “The Hunt for Black Pyramid”. “Sacred impliment”, meanwhile, is a term used on TakaraTomy's “World of Transformers” website to refer to the objects that give Transformers' life, like the Matrix of Leadership, the live-action movie Allspark, and Vector Sigma, the mega-computer from Generation 1 also mentioned on this page.
Pg 103 – The planet Fabricon appeared in the Challenge of the GoBots episode “A New Suit for Leader-1”.
Pg 104-105 – Lots of stuff!
Most of the attacks and skills of the characters listed here are shared by the original characters upon whom they are based. Exceptions include Devcon's Goongala Staves (“goongala” is the battle cry of Casey Jones from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), Heavy Load's Build Typhoon assault (that's the Robots in Disguise character's original Japanese name) and Road Rocket's Mach Speeder kick (when Generation 2 Road Rocket was re-released as part of the Microman toyline, that's what he was called).
In the upper right are two “seals”, one featuring Cybertronix that says “baitsu”, and the other the Autobot Security Services symbol from the IDW mini-series, Megatron: Origin.
The scroll in the upper left reads downwards, as if it were Japanese (though not right-to-left!). It reads: “You'll die as you lived/In a flash of the blade/In a corner forgotten by no one/You lived for the touch/For the feel of the steel/One bot and his honor”, paraphrased lyrics from Iron Maiden's “Flash of the Blade”.
The seal in the upper right reads “Bakusai Tenketsu” (Japanese for “breaking point”), a martial arts technique from Ranma ½.
That's Victory Star Saber's sword in the scroll at the bottom right. Just to the right of it are seals of the Shattered Glass Autobot Secret Police insignia, the Animated Autotrooper's insignia, and the “ancient Autobot” symbol that was seen on the forehead of the first Matrix spirit guide (earlier named by the Almanac as Primon) in the Generation 1 cartoon episode “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 4”.
The Cybertronix in the lower scroll reads: “Fight for the the honor/Fight for the splendour/Fight for your life”, lyrics from Iron Maiden's “The Duelist”.
The text at the bottom of the page is in Yautja, a font created by Jim Sorenson based on the symbols seen in the movie Predator. It's upside down to boot, and let me tell you, if I never have to translate f**king Predator again, it'll be too f**king soon. It reads: “What ho said da ting wid de tree bonce"and "Don't meddle wid tings you don't undahstand.” These lines, spoken in a thick Jamaican accent, were a hidden backwards message at the start of the Iron Maiden song, “Still Life”, intended to tell those who went out of their way to decode them in hopes of finding a Satanic reference they could use to persecute the band over to stop wasting their time. Whaddaya tryin' to say to me, Bill? :)
The final piece of coded writing, on the right-hand side of the page, is Narn from Babylon 5. It says: “Spare your life and choose the destruction of time over yourself”, lyrics from Iron Maiden's “Journeyman”. The lyrics are whispered in the song itself, as if a secret message, hence why Forster chose them.
Pg 106 – Generation 1 Buzzsaw, Sundor and Garboil were all repaints of Generation 1 Laserbeak. Sundor was among the character's from Derrick J. Wyatt's April Fool image, though the Almanac has changed the spelling of his name (intended to parody Laserbeak's Japanese name, “Condor”) to the English word “Sunder”. Soundwave's description for Garboil, the ever-present wordsnatcher, was the name of a bird in the novel The Phantom Tollbooth. His Méliès-wave generator is named after filmmaker Georges Méliès. Wingthing was the bat-like partner of Soundwave when he was an Action Master, though she has been relegated to just a Ratbat repaint here.
Pg 107 – Matrix, “darkest hour”, yadda yadda.
Pg 110 – The transformation of Cybertron into a huge weapon was also the stated goal of Generation 1 Megatron in the first issue of Marvel's G1 comic. The three potential origins for Cybertron and the Transformers related here are also culled from different continuities: “natural evolution” from that same first issue (given the name atechnogenesis in Dreamwave's More Than Meets The Eye guidebook), “built as a factory” from the G1 cartoon's “Five Faces of Darkness”, and the “primordial titans” are, of course, Unicron and Primus, originally of the Marvel universe, but now the default communal origin across the multiverse. The two moon bases, meanwhile, were introduced in The Transformers: The Movie.
Pg 112-113 – In his opening narration, Cosmos mentions another earlier faction that existed on Cybertron, to go along with the “Malignus” and “Destron” mentioned elsewhere in the book. This race is the Guardians, the heroic faction from GoBots. As to the worlds that surround Cybertron:
The Hadeen System is named after the “Hadean System”, a region of space mentioned in Alignment (see pg 9) that is intimated to be the home-space of Cybertron. Why they changed the spelling by one letter, we couldn't say.
221B was the Baker Street address of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's fictional detective Sherlock Holmes.
Thuvia is named for the title character of Edgar Rice Burroughs's Thuvia, Maid of Mars, while its moons Kerchack and Kala take their names from two apes in Burroughs's Tarzan.
Frehley's Comet is the title of an album by former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley.
Aouda Fogg is named for the lead character, Phileas Fogg, and his lover Aouda, from the Jules Verne novel, Around the World in 80 Days. Its moon Ayrton is named for another Verne character, Tom Ayrton, from In Search of the Castaways and The Mysterious Island (see also pg 66).
The Autobot Mausoleum is a floating crypt from the Generation 1 episode “Dark Awakening”.
The planet Dread appeared in the G1 episode “Chaos”. Cosmos notes that you can see it through a telescope from Cybertron; Galvatron was able to see Cybertron from Dread in that episode. Its moon Westenra is named for the character Lucy Westenra in Dracula.
Thrush is named after the secret criminal organization from The Man From UNCLE.
Tsathoggua and its moon Eibon are named for a creature and a book, respectively, from the works of Clark Ashton Smith.
Belegaer is a great sea on Middle Earth from the works of J.R.R. Tolkien.
Botropolis is the home of the Playskool Go-Bots.
Galleon appeared in the Challenge of the Go-Bots episode “Et Tu, Cy-Kill?”; it was the planet mined for ore that was used to build the GoBot's homeworld Gobotron, and Cosmos refers to its mining history. Like Westenra, its moon Mina is named after Mina Harker from Dracula.
Thulsa Doom is the nemesis of Kull and Conan the Barbarian, from the works of Robert E. Howard. All of its moons are likewise named for characters and places from, or titles of, Howard's works: The Servants of Bit-Yakin, The Jewels of Gwahlar, the sorcerers Thugra Khotan and Thoth-Amon, the alien Yag-Kosha, and the king Numedides. Only Dun Scaith does not appear to be a Howard reference: it's a region of Scotland that many myths and legends are associated with.
Pg 114-115 – It was right about here that I figured Sorenson and Forster were deliberately messing with me. Oy. I guess the best way to do this is to do it a sector of space at a time. And we'll go alphabetically, rather than try to follow the splatter-pattern of the book. There'll be some repetition here, with planets that have already been named earlier in the book and identified earlier in these annotations, but I really can't face up to doing all the cross-references this page would entail so, hey, you get yourself some repetition. Let's begin!
We'll start with the worlds of the Decepticon Empire, denoted by purple markers.
Ceti Alpha VII appeared in the Fun Publications story, “Descent into Evil”. It's named in homage to Ceti Alpha V from Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan.
Chaar was the Decepticons' base of operations after The Transformers: The Movie. It is noted here, as mentioned previously in the book, that Strika rules it.
Dinosaur was Magmatron's home in Beast Wars Neo
Garo appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Mach Kick Voluntarily Enlists?!”
Ijurn was mentioned in Dreamwave's Micromasters mini-series
New Kaon is named after the Decepticon state on Cybertron, introduced in Dreamwave's The War Within comics. It was formerly known as Pyrovar, a world from Alignment which was also made the capital of the displaced Decepticon empire.
Intel featured in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Hardhead is Hardheaded”.
Karn was seen in issue #9 of the Generation 2 comic book.
Lucifer was the planet on which Optimus Prime was reborn as Star Convoy in Battlestars.
Styx was a Decepticon penal colony seen in IDW's “Spotlight: Hot Rod”. The planet it orbited was not named there; here, it is dubbed Charon. Charon was the ferryman on the river Styx in Greek myth.
Porcupine was where the Predacon Hydra was stationed in the Beast Wars Neo cartoon.
Thrull apppeared in the G1 episode “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 2”.
Zarak housed Scorponok's secret base in The Headmasters cartoon.
Next, let's look at the yellow-marked Vestial Imperium, introduced in the Fun Publications comic, “Cheap Shots”.
Derut IV and Funghurus Six were mentioned in the UK comic story “Deadly Games!” Mil-Wal, meanwhile, was name-dropped on the cover of that issue, as the homeworld of the alien Hooligan, a reference to Millwall football team and the reputation their fans have for hooliganism.
E'Brutoc and Tykos appeared in issue #7 of the Generation 2 comic.
Edaps was mentioned in the online bio of Transformers Collectors' Club character Stopgap.
Elaspos was introduced in the UK comic story, “Wanted: Galvatron – Dead or Alive!”
Eskabar is prrrresumably the newly-named homeworld of the nomadic Esk clones, who appeared in issue #6 of the Generation 2 comic.
Ethos appeared in issue #8 of the Generation 2 comic
Ganzvort was first mentioned in the bio of Generation 1 Rewind. It shares a few city names with Earth.
Ghennix is the homeworld of Hook, Line and Sinker, consumed by Unicron in issue #66 of the G1 Marvel comic.
Golganath VII and its Niter mines were mentioned by Kup in The Transformers: The Movie.
Gpii II is part of the Gpii system, mentioned in the Animated “Be the Hero” book, Web of Deception. Trobulum is an element found there.
Hydrus IV was the point of origin for Nucleon, as seen in issue #70 of the G1 Marvel comic.
Hyperion was mentioned in IDW's “Spotlight: Nightbeat”.
Kol was seen in issue #9 of the Generation 2 comic book.
Scarvix appeared in the UK comic story “Headhunt”.
The Harvest Lords of Sigrath were the masters of the Recyclons from the story “Collect and Save” in the Transformers Legends anthology novel.
Szoria, Karkas III and Jabbio-Koratus are the homeworlds of the Szorians, Karkans and Jabbi-Ko mentioned in issue #6 of the Generation 2 comic.
Tau-Ursa appeared in issue #3 of Blackthorne's Transformers in 3-D.
Vestum Major and Minor are newly-named here, created as an origin point for the Imperium's name.
Yst was the site of Unicron's rebirth in the Fun Publications comic, “Revelations, Part 3”.
Next, the Autobot Commonwealth, marked in red. Apart from Cybertron, we've got:
Antilla appeared in the G1 cartoon episode “Cosmic Rust”.
Athenia appeared in the G1 cartoon episode “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 1”, but was only named in the Japanese dub of the episode.
The Beta system, Alpha IX and Dromedon were first mentioned by Kup in The Transformers: The Movie.
Bk'n was mentioned in the UK annual story “Another Time and Place”.
Com appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Mach Kick Voluntarily Enlists?!”
Combatron is another Cybertron colony world featured in the Fun Publications story “Force of Habit”.
Daffodil II was mentioned in the letters page of issue #326 of the UK Marvel comic.
Deneb IV was mentioned by Kup in issue #39 of the G1 Marvel comic. Denebian stalkers appeared in the “Find Your Fate” book, Island of Fear, though their planet of origin was not mentioned.
Elba was a prison planet from the Challenge of the GoBots episode “Escape from Elba”. Here, it is revealed to be the up-to-now unnamed planet on which Garrus-9, the prison complex from IDW's comics, resides.
Floron III appeared in the G1 episode “Quest for Survival”.
Gigantion, Velocitron and Animatron were the colony worlds of Cybertron (Animatron is a new name for Jungle Planet created by the Almanac).
Goo was introduced in the “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 3”.
Junk is the homeworld of the Junkions, introduced in The Transformers: The Movie. It's sometimes called “Junkion”.
Master appears throughout the Headmasters cartoon, homeworld of the titular characters.
Micro appeared in the Victory cartoon; it was later renamed Zone by the time of that franchise.
Omnitron is a new name, but is explained to be the homeworld of Energon Omnicons, seen in the episode “Survival Instincts”.
Opulus was introduced in IDW's Stormbringer mini-series.
Paradon appears in the G1 episode “Fight or Flee”.
Planet V is the Autobots' planetary headquarters from Victory.
Praun appeared in the Headmasters episode “The Four-Million-Year-Old Veil of Mystery”.
Regulon IV was another planet visited by Kup, as mentioned in the G1 episode “The Rebirth, Part 1”.
The Salvvatan system appeared in IDW's “Spotlight: Metroplex”.
Vehicon was mentioned in the bio of Reverse Convoy from the Robot Masters toyline.
Vespa III would be in the Vespa system, where Rattrap worked as a miner according to the Beast Wars episode “Dark Voyage”.
Let's turn now to the orange Quintesson Pan Galactic Co-Prosperity Sphere, named for the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere of the 1930s.
Alaxuu (misspelt here as Axaloo), Lanarq and Xetaxxis appeared in the G1 episode “The Quintesson Journal”.
Andellor and Exton IX appeared in issue #2 of Blackthorne's Transformers in 3-D.
Brobdingnag is a new name for the planet of giant aliens that appeared in the G1 episode “Child's Play”. It's named for a land off giants from Gulliver's Travels.
Corata-Vaz and Rotan appeared in IDW's Revelation storyline.
Fabricon appeared in the Challenge of the GoBots episode “A New Suit for Leader-1”.
McColamo is not a pre-existing Transformers planet, or a reference to anything I can figure out. It is noted to be a Free Trade Zone; Dirk Manus from the G1 episode was a “free trader”, so perhaps this is intended to be a new home planet for him. He claimed to hail from “Epslion Airadne”, named for the real-life star Epsilon Iridani, which also appears here as part of the Co-Prosperity Sphere.
Menonia was among the planets mentioned in the G1 episode “Madman's Paradise”.
Mirtonia is the homeworld of the alien Carcass, from G.I. Joe's Lunartix Empire. Fans have long assumed it is part of the Mirtonian constellation, mentioned in Generation 2 Laser Optimus Prime's bio.
Monacus appeared in the G1 episode “The Gambler”.
Prysmos is the planet from the Hasbro series Visionaries: Knights of the Magical Light.
Quintessa, of course, was the Quintessons' home world, introduced in The Transformers: The Movie. The map also includes a New Quintessa, from the BotCon Universe comics. The name of the planet turned into New Quintesson is revealed here to be Ejoornus.
Sandokan appears in the Fun Publications story, “The Dark Heart of Sandokan”.
Skuxxos is the newly-named homeworld of the alien Skuxxoid from the G1 cartoon.
Taxxos is the homeworld of the Taxxons from Animorphs.
Tixlara was mentioned in the G1 episode “The Quintesson Journal”.
Tlalak is the newly-named homeworld of the Tlalakans from the G1 episode “Sea Change”.
Torkulon appeared in the G1 episode “Webworld”.
Tyroxia's inhabitants appear in the UK G1 comic story, “Kup's Story”.
Vrob is another newly-named world, homeworld of the Vrobians from issue #63 of the G1 Marvel comic
Xeptos was mentioned in the bio of G1 Magnificus.
Zamojin appeared in the G1 episode “The Face of the Nijika”.
Zeotopia is the homeworld of the Xevoz, from the Hasbro toyline of the same name. In describing it, Swindle swears by the Vault of Eternal Destitution, the afterlife of the financially unsuccessful in Ferengi belief from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.
Zull appeared in IDW's “Spotlight: Ultra Magnus”.
Now the blue Nebulon Republic, named for the Nebulans and their world Nebulos from Generation 1.
Andegea (misspelled here as “Andega”) appeared in issue #3 of Blackthorne's Transformmers in 3-D.
Antares is a real star. Antares III was mentioned in the Fun Publications story “Gone Too Far”.
Centaris VII (misspelled here as “Centarix”) appears in Fun Publications story, “The Dark Heart of Sandokan”.
Delta Pavonis IV, Cygnus VII and Antar appeared in the G1 episode “The Big Broadcast of 2006”.
Eurythma appears in the G1 episode “Carnage in C-Minor”.
Feminia appeared in issue #5 of the Story of Super Robot Lifeforms: Transformers manga. It got blowed up real good in Zone.
Hive appears in the Headmasters episode “Fight to the Death on Planet Hive!!”
Ilixios is the newly-named homeworld of the Ilxian aliens from IDW's Generation 1 comics, first appearing in Spotlight: Blaster. It's prrrrobably misspelled, what with the extra “i” between the l and x.
Klo appeared in issues #78-80 of the G1 Marvel comic.
LV-117 appears in IDW's “Spotlight: Wheelie”.
The Nalva system was mentioned in the G1 episode “Five Faces of Darkness, Part 1”.
Paradise appears in the Headmasters episode “Head Formation of Friendship”.
Regalis V was the planet which Botanica visited in Beast Machines. It wasn't named until the Fun Publications story “Wreckers: Finale, Part II”.
Sandra appeared in the Headmasters episode “SOS from Planet Sandra”.
Shi-La is the newly-named homeworld of the Shi-Lai race from the Fun Publications comic, “Cheap Shots”.
Taros IV appears in the Fun Publications story, “The Dark Heart of Sandokan”.
Twin Star appeared in the Headmasters episode “Battle for Defense of the False Planet”.
Urtusk is the newly-named homeworld of the Urtuskians from issue #52 of the G1 Marvel comic. This was also the first appearance of the GCSS, the Grand Central Space Station, where a drink called an Abraxan Blue Fireball was served; evidently a beverage from the newly-named planet Abrax, also part of the Republic.
Vandar is the newly-named homeworld of Vandarian fuzz-worms, mentioned in a Fun Publications Mini-Mayhem strip. The first Almanac named it “Vandaria”.
Varas Centralus appears in IDW's Stormbringer mini-series.
Zegris appeared briefly at the end of the Fun Publications story “Gone Too Far”.
Then the tiny little white spots that are the Vok Territory.
Nexus Zero was the home base of the Vok as seen in the Beast Wars episode “Other Victories”. Swindle mentioned it by name in the Animated episode “S.U.V – Society of Ultimate Villainy”.
Protos, moon of Methuselah, was the moon on which Primus created the Covenent in the BotCon “Omega Point” storyline. Methuselah is here noted to be the lab of Primacron, from the G1 episode “Call of the Primitives”.
And now.... the neutral and unclaimed planets, bathing these pages in green splotches.
10-11001-1110-1-10011-10101 is... quite a story. This binary string reads “2-25-14-1-19-21”. If you convert that to each number's equivalent letter in the alphabet you get “Bynasu”. Thus we can understand that what we've got here is a spelling mistake, that the code should actually read “10-11001-1110-1-10101-10011” (2-25-14-1-21-19) and that we're looking at the planet Bynaus, from Star Trek: The Next Generation, home to a race who spoke only in binary code.
Airlandia is the planet from the 1980s Hasbro toyline Air Raiders.
Alkalide appeared in the Beast Was Neo episode “Planet of the Ultimate Weapon”.
Alpha Q's realm and all the worlds within it are from the Energon cartoon.
Altair IV is the titular world of Forbidden Planet.
Antiga Prime is from StarCraft.
Aquarius appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Personal Combat in the Deep Sea!!”
The Archa System is home to the planets Archa VII (the spider-planet from the Animated episode “Along Came a Spider”, named in the previous Almanac) and Archa IX (from the BotCon Universe comics).
Barbarossa is a new name for the Pirate Planet from the Headmasters episode “Mystery of the Space Pirate Ship”, because it was the name of a famous pirate (it means “Redbeard” in Italian). It was also the name of a planet from the TV series Andromeda, but that might be coincidence. Furthermore, Swindle has relabelled the planet Pirate Moon, rather than “Planet”, in reference to the Cybertron action figure two-pack, “Search for the Pirate Moon”.
Beast is the homeworld of the Battle Beasts, as seen in the Headmasters episode, “Rebellion on Planet Beast”.
Bedlam seems to refer to the John Brunner novel, Bedlam Planet.
Bhul was introduced in IDW's “Spotlight: Arcee”.
Byer's Planet is from Robert A. Heinlein's novel Tunnel in the Sky.
Caldoon IV appears in IDW's Last Stand of the Wreckers.
Chronos appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Planet of Time”.
The Coriakin system is named for a character from C.S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia. Its planets Camazotz and Ixchel are worlds from Madeleine L'Engle's novel, A Wrinkle in Time.
Crystal appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Break Is a Preadcon?”
Crystallium is the setting of 1980s Remco toyline The Saga of Crystar.
Cyteen features in the C.J. Cherryh novel that shares its name.
D'Hoonib is from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Darhos appears in the Headmasters episode, “Find MegaZarak's Weak Spot!!” When it was name-dropped in issue #5 of the Animated Arrival comic, it was misspelled “Dahros” and the first Almanac carried that spelling over. It appears the intent with this map is to declare the first spelling a mistake, as Swindle has crossed it out on his map, but the replacement spelling is also a typo – this time, it's “Dharos!”
Dendron Beta (?)
Devola was the site of a major victory by Tidal Wave in Armada.
Divine Wind is from Ender's Game.
Donovan appears in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Mirage in the Sand”.
Druidia is from Spaceballs.
Eberron is from Dungeons and Dragons.
Ellipsus, Adelbaran and Argus IV are from Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors.
Energoa was the name for prehistoric Earth in the Japanese dub of Beast Wars. Author Jim Sorenson noted that he thought about calling the planet Waspinator and Blackarachnia wound up on in “Predacons Rising” by this name, so this is probably what it refers to.
Eran is mentioned in issue #1 of the Great Transformer War manga. Swindle has evidently had bad dealings with the scientist from the planet who appears in that story, Doctor Dalton!
Eternia is the homeworld of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.
Exbar is from Blake's 7.
Fara appeared in issue #6 of the Generation 2 comic.
Femax appears in issue #53 of the G1 Marvel comic.
Fhloston is from The Fifth Element.
Flame appears in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Dinosaur Combiner Magmatron”.
Fleed is from the anime UFO Robot Gendizer.
Furnacia is the home world of the Firebug from the UK G1 comic story of the same title. When the Firebugs fled Furnacia, most of them wound up on Thessin, also seen here.
Giedi Prime is from Frank Herbert's Dune. It was also Jim Sorenson's screen name back in the 90s!
Godbless appears in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Chase the Mysterious Capsule”.
Gor is from John Norman's Chronicles of Gor novel series.
Gorlam Prime was introduced in IDW's “Spotlight: Nightbeat”.
Guard appears in issue #8 of the Victory manga.
H'lven is from DC Comics' Green Lantern.
Hala is the homeworld of the Kree race from Marvel comics.
Hyneria is from Farscape.
Jhi appears in issue #73 of the G1 Marvel comic.
Jiangyin is from Firefly.
Jion appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Angry Magmatron”.
Jormungandr appeared in issue #5 of the Beast Wars Neo manga.
Kaiba V was mentioned in the 2007 live-action movie video game.
Kalkar appears in issue #3 of Blackthorne's Transformers in 3-D.
Ki-Aleta was introduced in IDW's “Spotlight: Hot Rod”. As the result of what is presumably a mistake, it appears twice on the map. Presumably, one of these was supposed to be a different planet.
Kinmoku is from Sailor Moon.
Kobol is from Battlestar Galactica.
Krankor is from the Japanese movie, Planet Prince, popularized in the west by its lampooning in Mystery Science Theatre 3000.
Leida appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Waa! He Got Eaten”.
Luxor appeared in issue #4 of the Beast Wars Neo manga.
Macron, Xeres and Z'Gunn were all mentioned in the BotCon 2000 exclusive story, “Herald” (which was in itself a reworked version of a story from 1999 that lacked these planetary namedrops). The Almanac adds an extra “n” to the end of the last planet's name, which is spelled “Z'Gun” in the story.
Madelan appears in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Hang in there, Stampy”.
Magrathea is from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
Majipoor is from Robert Silverberg's novel series of the same name.
Marklar is from South Park.
Maxie's World was the title of a 1989 cartoon based on Hasbro's Maxie fashion dolls.
Melmac is the homeworld of the titular alien from ALF.
Merseia is from Poul Anderson's Technic History novel series.
МИР is a new name for the unnamed planet from IDW's “Spotlight: Cliffjumper”. It is Russian for “the world”.
Milton appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “The Seized Capsules”.
Mongo is the homeworld of Flash Gordon villain Ming the Merciless.
Moriturus was seen being destroyed in the Cybertron episode “Fallen”
The Morthrai System and its planets Mor-Tax and Qar-To are from War of the Worlds.
The worlds of the MQ System (Pz-zazz, Cameron, Pequod and Cheyne) were the setting for the “Matrix Quest” storyline that ran from issues #62-66 of the G1 Marvel comic. MQ, Matrix Quest, get it?
Mumu-Obscura appeared in IDW's “Spotlight: Sixshot”.
N'Aconda is a new name for the planet from issue #3 of the UK's live-action Transformers movie comic. It's inhabitants, the Thrall and A'ovan, were named in the story, but the planet wasn't.
An ambassador from Odessyx appeared in the G1 episode “Madman's Paradise”.
Necronom IV is the title of the H.R. Giger painting that inspired the look of the Alien movie series. Alien fandom has on occasion repurposed this name as a potential moniker for the hypothetical homeworld of the films' creatures, and the Almanac follows through on that.
New Avalon is from BattleTech.
New Texas is the setting of BraveStarr.
Nintenduu LXIV is from Futurama.
Nuliajuk is from Jerry Parnell's CoDominon novel series.
Orc is the homeworld of Mork from Mork and Mindy.
Orga, Duke and Vector were planets on which Armada Thrust scored major Decepticon victories.
P-0908 appears in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Duel in the Labyrinth”.
P-4376 (here mistakenly spelled with a D) appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “The Black Hole Crisis”.
Pangar is from Stargate.
Parthus and Zeeros appear in the Challenge of the GoBots episode “Et Tu, Cy-Kill?” Swindle makes reference to the Parthian raiders from that episode. Antaris III appears in the episode “Quest for the Creator”.
Pastal appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Troubled DNAVI”.
Pern is from Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern novel series.
Planet X is presented here as a combination of three different worlds to have gone by that name in Transformers fiction: the otherdimensional planet of techno-mauraders from Cybertron, the world from which the metal-eating Dorya insects hail, as seen in the Victory episode “The Death-Bringing Space Insects!” and finally “Energy Planet X”, from issue #6 of the Victory manga.
Ploor is from Edward Elmer Smith's Lensman series.
Pollux, Nemon, Oran, Doom and Arus are from Voltron: Defender of the Universe.
Pova appears in flashback in IDW's Last Stand of the Wreckers mini-series.
Pyrrus is from Harry Harrison's Deathworld series.
Quartex is the home planet of Tonka's Rock Lords.
Reptizar is from the Shadow Raiders cartoon (based on the War Planets toyline). Relevant fun fact? It was the final planet seen in the series, being consumed by series antagonist the Beast Planet, after it was teleported out of the galaxy in which the cartoon took place. That's why there aren't any other Shadow Raiders planets on the map!
Rimmerworld appeared in the Red Dwarf episode of the same name.
Sargasso appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Sub-Commander Longrack”.
Sarpeidon is from Star Trek.
Skaro is the homeworld of the Daleks from Doctor Who. We get another reference to their Mark III Travel Machines.
Skriixos V is the newly-named homeworld of the mysterious Skriix aliens from the original Beast Wars video game.
Solid appears in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Burning Heart Below Freezing”.
Soror is from the original Planet of the Apes novel.
SR388 is from Metroid.
Stero appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Survive the Hot-Blooded Instructor”.
Stroggos is from Quake.
Talos IV appeared in the first episode of Star Trek
Tarazed is a star system from Andromeda.
Tasmos appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Bump the Physicist”.
TC², Qom-Riyadh and Hebron are planets in Dan Simmons Hyperion Cantos series of novels.
Tencton is the homeworld of the aliens from Alien Nation. The message below it is intheir language, Tenctonese, and says “Newcomers World”; “Newcomers” was the other name by which these aliens were known.
Thermia is from Galaxy Quest.
Thra is from The Dark Crystal (note Swindle's reference to valuable crystals!).
Thundera is the homeworld of the ThunderCats.
All the worlds of the Tiresian Union – Fantoma, Optera, Karbarra, Praxis, Garuda, Spheris, Peryton and Haydon IV – are from Robotech, or more specifically, it's unproduced sequel series, The Sentinels.
Triceti appears in the Challenge of the GoBots two-parter, “Renegade Rampage”.
Tube appeared in the Beast Wars Neo episode “Attack! Randy”.
Vhoorl is from the works of H.P. Lovecraft.
Wall appears in the third Zone story page.
We Made It is from Larry Niven's Known Space novel series.
Wendesday and Greengard feature in text stories printed in the graphic novel collection of the Beast Wars Neo manga.
Yautja is the homeworld of the aliens from Predator, as confirmed by the simple message in Yautja beneath it: “Predator World”.
Zel Samine was the setting for Takara's Generation 1 Playstation 2 video game.
Terminus and Gaia are from Isaac Asimov's Foundation series of novels.
Z'ha'dum is from Bablyon 5.
Gasp.... wheeze.... and finally.... in addition to the above-mentioned Tiresian Union and Alpha Q's realm... the other named regions of space...
The Benzuli Expanse was introduced in IDW's “Spotlight: Galvatron” and formed the backbone of their Revelation series.
The Blot Nebula was mentioned in the on-package bio of Classics Jetfire.
The Eshems Nebula first appearance in IDW's Reign of Starscream series. Aliens from this region later appeared in their Defiance series; in this map is anything to go by, they're the Ejoornians who were displaced by the Quintessons when they took over their planet.
The Falcon Nexus is mentioned in the BotCon 2000 story “Herald”.
G Nebula 89 is from Super-God Masterforce
The Galran Khanganete is named for the Galra empire from the anime Beast King GoLion, which was dubbed to become Voltron.
The Kvi cluster was mentioned in the Animated “Be the Hero” book, Web of Deception.
The Plait Expanse features in the Fun Publications Shattered Glass story “Do Over”.
The Skeleton Nebula appears in the Cybertron episode “Warp”.
The Stone Place is named for a nebula from Fred Saberhagen's novel, “Berserker's Planet”.
Pg 116 – Avalon Boulevard is named after high councillor Avalon from the Dreamwave Energon comics. Dolrailer Spaceport gets its moniker from the Japanese name of Robots in Disguise Mega-Octane. The hanger here is named after Shingo XXIV, a notable individual who wrote a letter that was printed in issue #38 of the Generation 1 Marvel comics.
Pg 117 – Eronus Way is named for a member of the Autobot Council of Autobots from Dreamwave's The War Within comics.
Pg 118 – Bricolo is the is the French-Canadian name of the Generation 1 Constructicon Scrapper. A character with this name was mentioned in the Fun Publications story, “I, Lowtech”.
Pg 119 – Horsepower is named for an Autobot who appeared in the UK comic story, “The Big Shutdown”. Sparkride is named after the repaint of the Generation 1 Protectobot Groove who was a component of Guard City in Operation Combination. These two appeared, unnamed, in the “First (And Second) in Flight” comic packed with the Jetfire and Jetstorm toys.
Pg 122 – Photon pulse cannons were the personal weapons of choice of the Generation 1 Autobot Headmaster, Brainstorm.
Pg 123 – Powered Convoy is designed and named after the Diaclone toy that was repainted to become Generation 1 Ultra Magnus.
Pg 124 – Commandrons were a line of motorized transforming Tomy toys available through McDonalds in 1985. Meanwhile, Maladroids were a subset of the Select 1980s toyline, Convertors.
Pg 125 – This Maccadam's menu is full of fun stuff.
The robots appearing on the menu are Animated\versions of (top to bottom, left to right) Generation 1 Sky Lynx (reimagined to transform not into an Earthly space shuttle, but a Cybertronian one, based on Generation 1 Jetfire), live-action movie Barricade, Generation 1 Chromia, Beast Wars Neo Stampy, Victory Hellbat, GoBots Cy-Kill, Beast Wars Antagony, Generation 1 Blaster, Beast Wars Tarantulas, Victory Clipper, Generation 1 Mindwipe, TransTech Cheetor (looking very much like Animated Blurr, whose design was based on his) and a monstrous makeover for Robots in Disguise Sky-Byte! Bonus points if you spotted Number 5 from Short Circuit squirrelled away in the bottom left, behind the bottle!
Energon at Maccadam's comes in two varieties: Z (from Zone) and Ultra (from IDW's comics).
I'm afraid I can't identify the source of any of the vintage years.
Mebian Energon comes from Mebion, a region of Cybertron mentioned in Generation 1 Magnificus's bio. It includes theragen, a Klingon chemical from Star Trek.
Nova Cronal Energon comes from Nova Cronum, introduced in Dreamwave's The War Within comics. It includes emphemerol, from Scanners.
Ankmor Energon comes from Ankmor, introduced in the Fun Publications story “The New World” and named for Ankh-Morpork from Terry Pratchett's Discworld novel series. It includes Atroquinine, from the Ace Attorney video game series.
Stanixian Energon comes from Stanix, a region of Cybertron from the UK comic story “The Magnificent Six”. It contains janquore, from Jann Nogra's novel New York 4012, and smilex, the Joker's deadly toxin from the Batman movie.
Animatronian Energon is the book's third reference to a newly-created English name for the Jungle Planet from Cybertron. It contains phazon, from Metroid Prime, and terrazine, from StarCraft.
The fuels on tap have various origins McGuirkness (from Guinness and Coach McGuirk from Home Movies), Panther Pilsner featured in the Three Stooges short “Three Little Beers”, Flat Tire is name for Fat Tire Beer ('cause Transformers have wheels!) and Budweiski (Budweiser and...?).
“Oil can! Oil can!” is a quote from the Tin Man in The Wizard of Oz.
The oils by the can are also named for real beers, but have other meanings too: Heinleinkin (named for both Heinekin beer and sci-fi author Robet L. Heinlein), Black Tar of Thentis (Black Star beer and Thentis from John Norman's Chornicles of Gor), Corona Solar Lite (Corona beer, favourite brand of Transformers writer Simon Furman, and the Corona Solar Light lamp) and Michelobay (Michelob beer and Michael Bay, director of the live-action Transformers movies).
Mudder's Milk is a drink from Firefly.
The right column gives us more Cybertronian days of the week in addition to those seen on page 81. They're all still named after Transformers cartoon writers: Dillesol (Flint Dille), Gerbesol (Steve Gerber), Davisol (Paul Davids), Maleksol (Bryce Malek), Marxsol (Christy Marx), Glutsol (Don F. Glut) and Robbisol (Dick Robbins).
This Island Iced Tea is a mash-up of the book This Island Earth and the drink Long Island Ice Tea. Fictional contents include Brekhov (named for Colonel Brekhov from G.I. Joe), D2rz (the code printed on Cybertron Cannonball's Cyber Key), Jipe (a Malignus from the Brazilian Transformers toyline), Aethelric (a character from the UK comic story “Man of Iron”) and Caf-Pow (a drink from NCIS). Other ingredients in this drink and the others are real chemicals and pieces of hardware
Latta Collins is named for the cocktail Tom Collins, and the actor who portrayed Generation 1 Starscream, real name Chris Collins, union name Chris Latta.
Manterror is named for the Beast Wars character of the same name.
Bloody Z is named for the Bloody Zone, another name for the Blasty Zone from Robot Masters. Its ingredients include Worcestershire sauce, written in the Internationl Phoenetic Alphabet.
Zero's fictional ingredients include tripledacus (the Jointron combiner from Beast Wars II) and Rose's Ethanol (Rose's is a brand of mixer drinks).
The Metroplex needs little explanation. It's sole fictional ingredient is Matejka, named after Transformers fan Anastasia Matejka, who played Timelines Flareup in the BotCon 2008 Animated script reading, “Bee in the City”.
The Metrotitan is named for Zone's Decepticon redeco of Generation 1 Metroplex. It's ingredients include an eye lag, a brand of screw.
Kadomatsu is evidently the Transformer answer to karaoke. A kadomatsu is a traditional Japanese New Year decoration.
The Vesper is a real cocktail, created and named in the first James Bond novel. Naturally, we don't need to draw the line between this and “stirred, not shaken” for you.
Pg 128 – The Emirate Xaaron Spacebridge Nexus is named for the Autobot leader from the Marvel comics, who first appeared in the UK serial “Target: 2006”.
Pg 134 – Lisa Kane is a friend of author Bill Forster.
Pg 135a – Unnamed in the episode they appeared in, Cancer and Hydra are based on the Super God Masterforce characters with whom they share their names. Vangelus, meanwhile, is another of Derrick J. Wyatt's April Fools illustration characters; he's a caricature of Transformer fan Chris Ho, and sports his screen name.
Pg 135b – The Burger Bot placemat has quite a few sneaky references in it.
Buger Bot's mascot is B.O.T., the titular human-made robot from the Generation 1 cartoon episode, “B.O.T.”
His purple pal Pickles is an anthropomorphic version of the griffin-shaped fortress from the G1 episode “Aerial Assault”.
Did you figure out that the connect-the-dots puzzle was Mount Rushmore? The extra faces are those of G.I. Joe's Cobra Commander (who added his visage to the mountain in the Joe cartoon two-parter, “Worlds Without End”) and Tricky Dick himself, former US president Richard Nixon.
The fictional presidents listed on the mat include:
Walter Barnett, head of I.I.I. From the Marvel Generation 1 comics.
Elaine Nakamura, mentioned as one of the greatest presidents in the 1990s TV show Time Trax.
Tommy Kennedy, Optimus Prime's little buddy from the live-action segments featured in the fifth season of the Generation 1 cartoon.
Howard J. Nissen, from Frank Miller's Give Me Liberty comic book mini-series.
Edward Augutter, real named of “Auger” from Inhumanoids. He was elected president in the final episode of the show, but as noted, never served.
Benito Caruso, from the H.G. Wells novel The Shape of Things to Come.
John Keller, the Secretary of Defense from the live-action Transformers movie. We also get another reference to the Los Bogos project (see pg 79).
Pg 136 – The Jekka Amphitheatre appeared in the G1 UK comic story “Deadly Games!”
Pg 137 – The gas station attendant's nametag reads McFeely, a reference to... well, me! Your humble annotator! Jim and Bill blew me away with this honor.
Pg 139 – Another reference to the Pit (see pg 20) and the Beast Wars standing stones (see pg 74).
Pg 143 – Since the body text makes a point of saying the Autobot workers are nameless, “Boost Hammer” presumably refers to the tool attached to the highlighted worker's arm. It's named after Wrecker Hook's solitarium weapon from Robot Masters.
Pg 144-145 - Hhhhhhookay, we're on the home stretch now, with these Omega Sentinels pages being the last big jobs. For the sake of my sanity, repeat references to planets and battles that have already come up in the Almanac wont be noted here. Note how all the file cards are written from a Decepticon perspective!
Let's start with the evidence tag in the top left. Fictional numbers which appear on it are:
17 and TFC-10, the Japanese ID numbers of the original Generation 1 Soundwave and his TF Collection reissue.
369-09-JA43, the serial number of the G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra toy, Shockblast (which was a substitute name for Generation 1 Shockwave for a short time).
It also has some REAL numbers on it, which are all aspects of scientific and mathematical constants with their decimal points relocated.
66.7428 – 6.67428 x 10^-11 m^3 kg^-1 s^-2 is the Universal Gravitational Constant.
271.82818 – 2.7182818 is the the Exponential Constant.
31.41592 – 3.141592 is Pi resolved to six places.
161.80339 – 1.6180339 is the Golden Ratio.
And the rest:
Gamma Supreme's ship mode is named the Gung Ho, after the craft from Beast Wars Neo, and is piloted by an Animated version of Beast Wars Neo Longrack.
The font at the bottom of Gamma Supreme's file card is Zentraedi, created by Jim Sorenson based on the aliens from Robotech and their written language. It reads: “Shots now hurt other players”, a quote from the video game Gauntlet.
Gamma Supreme's “tech specs” card is done in the style of the Japanese Beast Wars Metals line. The Cybertronix on the card reads: “The Ancient Autobot on the card reads, from top to bottom: “Gamma Supreme”, “Punk”, “Rock”, “Girl” and “If you dont got Mojo Nixon, your store come fixin”, the last being a bit of a mangling of a lyric from the 1988 Dead Milkmen song, “Punk Rock Girl”. The real lyric is: “If you don't got no Mojo Nixon, then your store could use some fixin'”. The label under his ship mode reads: “Eskimo”.
The post-it note to the left of Alpha Supreme's file card reads “My rigid grill structure is bearing down on your unprotected cargo door”, a quote from Mystery Science Theater 3000, popularized in Transformers fandom when it became associated with Beast Wars Dinobot as the result of some unfortunate parsing in an alt.toys.transformers poster's signature. “Dinobot has spoken. My rigid grill structure...” became one of the most persistent memes of the era.
Alpha Supreme's ship mode is named the Axalon, after the craft from Beast Wars, and he is captained by an Animated version of Beast Wars Optimus Primal. His file card continues the story of Animated Sideways begun back on page 97, further drawing the connections to the Armada character by noting that he too possesses Trans-Phase powers. The Chinese characters, meanwhile, mean Shangai, again making the suggestion that this Sideways could have gone on to become Revenge of the Fallen Sideways. The file card also mentions the Silvart War (a conflict touched on in the final episode of Victory) and the brainstormer (an interrogation device from Challenge of the GoBots).
Alpha Supreme's tech specs card is done in the style of those packaged with Takara's Encore series of Generation 1 reissues. The tag BLKJCK refers to the original Optimus Primal's European market name, “Blackjack” while ODIM was his Cantonese name. The Ancient Autobot on the second card simply says “A3”.
The map sandwiched between Alpha Supreme's two cards has lots of coded text on it, but some of it has apparently disappeared into the page fold, because the header that should obviously say Trypticon only says “Trpticon”. This is obviously Trypticon prison (see pg 27); prisoners named in Cybertronix include Cryotek (who's a gangster), Rampage (psychopathic serial killer of Beast Wars fame), Beta (Generation 1 Beta was a heroic freedom fighter, but Shattered Glass Beta was a crime boss), Zero from Challenge of the Go-Bots, and, er, ManBearPig from South Park. Other passages read: “Cell Block D63” (D-63 was Trypticon's Japanese ID number), “ya vas lyublyu” (“I love you” in Russian, a phrase that was the subject of discussion in classic prison movie The Great Escape), and “Brooks was here” and “So was Red”, messages from the prison drama The Shawshank Redemption. There is one obscured passage, the visible portion of which reads either “easer” or “eaker”.
Epsilon Supreme's ship mode is named the Eclipse, a spaceship from the Fun Publications story “Force of Habit”, and he is commanded by an Animated version of Generation 1 Scattershot. The file card refers to an unseen ship called the Victory, after the name Sorenson and Forster's previous book, The Ark, gave to the Decepticon spaceship from the Generation 1 cartoon that became the villains' underwater headquarters.
The text below Epsilon Supreme's ship mode is a Russian proverb that reads: “One person is gathering food, and seven others are eating”.
Animated Omega Spreem first came into being when Derrick J. Wyatt recolored Animated Omega Supreme's model for his blog. Spreem was a European-exclusive Generation 1 Action Master. Power Plans were technical read-outs on Action Master packaging; all the pieces of tech singled out here were on the original Omega Spreem plans.
Beta Supreme's ship mode is named the Battlestar, after the 1991 Takara Transformers series, The Battlestars; in honor of this, he is captained by an Animated version of Big Bang, (see pg 28). His file card has another message in Babylon 5's Narn: “Malem me pakeno”, a quote from King Kong which means “Woman of gold”.
Beta Supreme's profile is done in the style of the data files included with Takara's TF Collection series of Generation 1 reissues. The Cybertronix on it translates into the lyrics from the Iron Maiden track “Mission from 'Arry”, while the Japanese at the bottom translates into the proverb “The nail that sticks up gets hammered down”.
The Ancient Autobot on the map below Beta Supreme reads: “The Dude abides” (a quote from The Big Lebowski) and “Prupis” and “Dunsay” (for Bob Prupis and George Dunsay, members of the original 1984 Transfomers marketing team). The lowest line of text is in Rylodian, a font created by Jim Sorenson based on the language from The Last Starfighter. It says “You are here”.
Images hidden in the background include a “Boxtron” comic strip by Donny Finkleberg (a comic book writer who masqueraded as the super-villain Robot Master in the Marvel G1 comics), the CGI cutaway of the Steelhaven seen in full on pages 154-155, and a WWII propaganda poster designed for the 2010 Doctor Who episode “Victory of the Daleks”, depicting one of the titular creatures. The episode aired less than three months before the publication of the Almanac!
Pg 146-147 – And it goes on!
Eta Supreme's ship mode is named the Hyperion, after the Autobot ship briefly seen at the beginning of the Armada cartoon, and he is captained by an Animated version of Generation 1 Hot Spot. The Ancient Autobot on his file card reads: “No candy in your till, no cutie left to thrill”, lyrics from the April March song, “Chick Habit”.
The red Ancient Autobot on the folder just right of Eta's card reads: “Silly rabbit”, part of the slogan for Trix cereral. Below that, obscured, are lyrics from the Animal's “Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood”: “Sometimes it seems that all I have do is worry, then you're bound to see my other side”. Tucked away just behind the folder is the Maccadam's menu from page 125.
Delta Supreme's ship mode is named the Darkstar, after an Autobot shuttlecraft seen in the Generation 2 comics, and he is captained by an Animated version of Generation 1 Silverbolt. His file card mentions an unseen ship called the Revenge, after the name The Ark gave to Galvatron's ship from The Transformers: The Movie. The Cybertronix on the file card are lyrics from the Sandy Rogers song, “Fool For Love”.
The Ancient Autobot on the pin at the top of Longarm Prime's reads “Vanting Ballog”, for Hasbro brand directors Michael Vibede Vanting and Michael Ballog. The badge itself is a S.T.A.R.S. Idento-card (see page 29), and its serial number, XΨ390 is the prisoner number of Sirius Black from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. The badge is also a combined reference to The Fifth Element: it's labelled a multi-pass, after a kind of pass-card from the film, and the Cybertronix at the bottom reads “Leeloo Minai Lekarariba-Laminai-Tchai Ekbat De Sebat”, the full name of the movie's character Leeloo.
There's a line of text in Arabic at the bottom left. If anyone can translate it, give me a holler!
Kappa Supreme's ship mode is named the Chromia X, after the ship piloted by Beast Wars Airazor in the Fun Publications story “Dawn of Future's Past”, and he is captained by an Animated version of Cybertron Override. The Decepticon Graffiti on his file card translates into lyrics from Johnny Cash's “Tennessee Stud”.
Theta Supreme's ship mode is name the Tsunami, which does not appear to be a pre-existing Transformers spaceship. It's captained by an Animated version of Robots in Disguise Railspike. The Cybertronix on his file card reads: “Anyway, my eyes are not accustomed to this light”, lyrics from the Statler Brothers' song, “Flowers on the Wall”.
Zeta Supreme's ship mode is named the Xantium, after the ship featured in IDW's Stormbringer mini-series, and he is captained by an Animated version of Marvel UK character Impactor. We also learn that the Autobot strike team from the UK comics, the Wreckers, existed in the Animated universe.
The number on the star chart hidden behind Iota Supreme's image is CA JJZ 109, the license plate of the famous car from the 1968 movie, Bullit.
Iota Supreme's ship mode is name the Iron Hope, after the ship from the Fun Publications' story “Force of Habit”, and he is captained by an Animated version of Robots in Disguise Wedge.
The numerical code in the top left of the data read-out on Iota Supreme reads SSG-577, the hull classification of the submarine USS Growler, which is part of the Intrepid Air and Space Museum, where author Bill Forster used to work. The Japanese on the right reads Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, the anime which was dubbed to become Battle of the Planets and G-Force. The numbers above, HQ7886, appear to refer to 1978 and 1986, the years in which Battle of the Planets and G-Force premiered, respectively.
The Ancient Autobot descending all the way down the left-hand side of Iota's read-out are the lyrics of Shivaree's “Good Night Moon”, while on the right are the nonsense lyrics from Vertigogo's “Combustible Edison”.
The Ancient Autobot on the post-it note to Iota's left reads: “I always found it funny somewhere there's a kid playin' with a little figure of Earnest Borgnine”, a quote from the script for the movie True Romance (not actually in the movie itself).
While the envelope behind Iota Supreme is a little tricky to read due to parts of it vanishing into the page fold, Bill Forster put up an unobstructed version of it on his DeviantArt account. Across the top, it reads: “Elite Guard. If over 10 envelopes accumulated at your workstation, return surplus to front desk receptionist.” The first user of the envelope was Alpha Trion, who sent a missive to Computron, an Animated version of the G1 Technobot combiner first mentioned here. Computron then used it to send something to Perceptor, who sent something to Blaster, who sent something to Kup, who sent something to new Animated character Punch, though he accidentally wrote Counterpunch and had to cross out the “Counter”, a reference to the faction-switching Generation 1 spy, Punch. The final recipient was Shockwave; the entry begins with “Sho” written in Predacon Cybertronix, before being crossed out and replaced with “Longarm” in Maximal. But this is in the From box, so what does this mean? Did Punch know Shockwave was Longarm?
Lastly, the evidence tag on the extreme right of this page is the same as the one on the previous spread, except for:
The numbers on the side are now D-101 and TFC-18, the original and TF Collection Japanese ID numbers for Soundwave's upgraded form, Soundblaster.
The Bin# is now 66.2606 – 6.62606 x 10−34 is Planck's Constant.
Pg 148 – The Steelhaven was given its name in the first Almanac. It is named for the ship commanded by Fortress Maximus in the Generation 1 Marvel comics.
Pg 150 – Swindle mentions Planet Q, home of Energon's Alpha Q, seen in the star map on page 114-115.
Pgs 154-155 – References in the technical cutaway of the Steelhaven include:
The Vanguard Booster was a Mini-Con weapon from the PlayStation 2 Armada video game.
The Kurisama targeting system is named for Transformers fan Chris “Kurisama” Vera, who created the CGI model used on these pages.
The DA5-ID Shield Generator is named for the character Da5id Meier from the Neal Stephenson novel, Snow Crash.
The Vertias-class Hyperspace Engine refers to Chris Vera's own surname, in its original Latin form.
21-IX, a reference to Chris Vera's birthday, the 21st of September.
The Steelhaven's brig is reinforced with gurunium, a mighty metal from Victory.
TA-22, a reference to Chris Vera's dearly departed car, a 1974 TA22 Celica.
The Roche-class engines are named for Transfomrers fan-turned-pro, writer, artist and all-round trouser-shattering bloke, Nick Roche.
The Steelhaven's shuttle are all craft from other media. They include the Blue Nixie from Dungeons and Dragons, the Nautilus from Jules Verne's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, the Poison Orchid from Scott Lynch's novel Red Seas Under Red Skies, the Weatherlight from Magic: The Gathering, the Black Pearl from Pirates of the Caribbean and the Alcarondas from the works of J.R.R. Tolkien.
Pg 222 – Even at the finishing line, the Almanac sneaks in a few last references to things we have not seen in the book before in the form of an Animated timeline. In addition to the previously-mentioned Guardians, Malignus and Destrons (explaining how they can be old dialects, as touched upon at various points in the books) we have:
Cyberglyphics are the ancient symbol writing from the live-action movie universe.
The Protectons were the heroic faction from Robotix.
Zeemon Magnus is named after the GoBot politcal leader, Zeemon.
Devron was a former Decepticon leader from the Generation 1 cartoon. He is only ever seen as one of the statues in the “Hall of Heroes” (the hall in which Starscream is coronated in The Transformers: The Movie), his name given by animation model sheets showing the hall's layout.
Megazarak was the Japanse name of Generation 1 Scorponok, and later used as the name of a Decepticon leader from another dimension in the Universe toyline.