Something I have been working on it managing my Transformers collection down to a decent size.
Part of this has been defining what the characters mean to me, and as a more metaphysical goal, who the characters are.
Part of this process has been really figuring out the naming conventions of the Transformers.
We know, in a real-world sense, that the names are merely pawns in a larger economic game between companies - Hasbro has to put out Optimus Prime every series to stop him from being an Androidz or a Toy Story character. Some of the names are sacred - the aforementioned Prime, Megatron, etc - but what about a name like Afterburner? Who is Afterburner?
To define that, you have to look at the number of times the name has been used.
Afterburner is (using US-only names):
- a 1987 Autobot Technobot
- a 1993 Decepticon jet
This idea would make you think that the names are not that important if they can be reused for an Autobot and a Decepticon, but at the same time, it also gives the importance of names for these characters. Why is Prowl always an Autobot? These thoughts lead to a level of research into Transformer names that took many months to complete...
But that is a separate story than the one I intended to tell in this post. The Combaticons existed as just five characters in the G1 continuity, but recent developments in the Power Core Combiner subset say that perhaps there are more Combaticons out there. Along those lines, these are the characters I consider the Combaticons.
Names and bios to follow at a later time.