Page 1 of 1

Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2017 7:49 am
by Kurona
Let me just preface this to say that while there are existing threads about Megatron's alt-mode and what it should or shouldn't be, those are outdated, short-lived, have expired links (some of which are used to make the majority of one's point) and thus I kind of feel it'd make more sense to start a new one rather than dragging up the corpse of one of those. Also, they just address Megatron and not Galvatron.

With that out the way, let's speed right along to what has seemed to overtake RIBFIR/RIRFIB as the most heated serious debate within the fandom: what should the alt-modes of the two most infamous Decepticon leaders be?

By the way Rumble's red and Frenzy's blue. Sorry, I don't make the rules

And of course, we'll start with the big Megs himself, the main focal point of most of these arguments over Galvatron, for one particular reason - the gun mode. The most infamous of the bizarre alt-mode choices in early G1. Most characters are fine to keep their alt-modes in one form or another; Optimus Prime's truck mode causes no fuss for reasons legal, believable or otherwise and can come in a variety of modernised forms as the years go on, allowing him to keep his iconography and recognisability while still feeling fresh. The same can be said about most other iconic characters in the franchise - Starscream, Bumblebee, Jazz, Hot Rod; none of them cause any problems in their alternate modes and can be easily updated and recognised even with a major design change. But while certain other iconic characters like Soundwave and Grimlock face different problems concerning their original alt-modes in modern day interpretations, Megatron in particular stands out for many, many reasons:-

-It's not mobile. While most alternate modes are chosen partly to allow greater speed, flight, manoeuvrability in the skies and many other reasons, Megatron's gun mode does not afford him any advantage in mobility as it is just a gun, and most of the time it seems he cannot move under his own power. Talking of which...

-He needs someone else to hold and use him. Putting aside the more laughable scenarios of trusting himself to Starscream on multiple occasions (including the movie), even if we were to assume the most loyal of troops under his command that he can select to wield his gun mode it still of course presents a disadvantage. He can't use it with no-one else around and it greatly reduces what options he has, as well requiring the focus of one soldier just to shoot him.

-He mass-shifts. We're not gonna beat around the bush here - scale is an omnipresent issue in the Transformers franchise and it will never be resolved completely; even the most stalwart attempts like the Michael Bay movies still have many an issue. Even beyond Megatron these issues obviously exist; Soundwave and his cassettes, the Combiners being far more than the sum of the parts, and of course just how on earth a robot that turns into a car can turn out anywhere near comparable size and mass to that of a robot that turns into a plane. I'm not going to argue that this is something we can solve, nor that it should be a serious focus for a Transformers series to try and get right (as interesting as the aforementioned Movies' attempts at it have been). But as Transformers fans and just consumers of fiction in general, some of this can be handwaved. Combiners can possibly be excused as that being an ability of theirs or something mystical to do with the Enigma of Combination. For the common car vs. plane example, movie magic and suspension of disbelief can play a part of that. Clever cinematography and my willing to accept that a man can fly can let this pass without the viewer really thinking about this nitpick while they're watching and just focus on the plot and characters in front of them.
Megatron turning into a gun is a far more egregious example. There is no way that any suspension of disbelief or amount of clever camerawork can make you believe that a handheld gun can turn into a giant robot without some sort of explanation or some huge mental gymnastics. Reasons might be given, clever ideas can be put forward; but at the very least you will still feel your suspension of disbelief wince a little. It's a bit of a difficult one to let slide.

But of course, we're avoiding the big issue here. Beyond believability - as important as that is - there is one huge, major issue; one big reason Hasbro does not let Megatron turn into a Walther P-38 anymore. They can't legally do it.
All things considered, the original Megatron toy was lucky to have been released when he was. A mere two years before new legislation was brought in and accepted on the subject of what you can and can't do with a toy gun. Don't worry, I won't bore you with the logistics here - I don't feel it's necessary, and to be honest I simply don't know enough about this type of subject. There's better people to explain this than me, and maybe it on its own would make an interesting topic. But it's beyond the scope of just Transformers I feel - it affects every toy gun, and it's getting into the realm of actual legality - I don't quite know all the history, and really, it's probably just enough to know Megatron isn't allowed his firearms license so Hasbro doesn't let him shoot a dude.

And with that, we arrive at Generation 2; a good few years after those toy gun laws were introduced and Hasbro saw that for the first figure since 1984 of Megatron (that transformed), they couldn't make him a gun. So, of course, we got a tank. An alternate mode that has stuck around to this very day - G2, Armada, ROTF, multiple DW and IDW bodies, Combiner Wars, Titans Return, he was going to be one in Animated Season 4... Megatron's taken up a tank form a lot. And it's pretty easy to see why - if the character's iconic alt-mode is a gun and you can no longer make him a gun, why not make his new alt-mode a gun that moves? Speeding on right ahead we come to Machine Wars, where Megatron took up for the first time a flight mode - a jet. He'd take up Earthen flight modes a few more times in Animated and Titans Return and they seem to work out well, especially when you've got a big 'ol fusion cannon slapped to the bottom of it. Perhaps the final most significant alt-modes to mention would be his Cybertronian modes - whether a tank or some sort of flight mode, a lot of the time this tends to represent his feelings of superiority to other worlds and species; refusing to 'infect' himself with any vehicle mode not cybertronian. It's a pretty good concept and feeds well into recent characterisations of him. It also provides a unique look to him among his earth-based soldiers when done well.

He's had a lot more modes in the past 30 years of course; many a car comes to mind, but most of the time these are one-off things to fit a gimmick or theme and are not what one tends to think about when they consider definitive Megatron alt-modes. That said, the batmobile he took up in Cybertron is pretty badass...

In my personal opinion, I prefer Megatron to be a gun. ... and a triple-changer.
Most criticisms I have with the gun mode are done away with when you consider the idea it's a last resort - when everything's gone to hell around him or there's some huge threat he and the Autobots have to team up against, risking the power of mass-shifting - potentially making it an important plot point and not just something he can casually do - and diverting all available power to just firepower, and trusting yourself in the hands of a capable ally like Soundwave or Optimus? That's badass, and a sight to behold. Hell, a lot of great, iconic scenes in G1 had Optimus teaming up with Megatron by firing his gun mode; which they even re-created in the otherwise bad Machinima Combiner Wars series. So yes, I think a gun mode does work... when it's a last resort and not his primary alt-mode.
For a primary alt-mode, I prefer to go with a flight mode. Decepticons have always been linked to flight thematically in some way, and I don't think I need to sell anyone on the speed and manoeuvrability of a jet. The mode just makes sense to me. Especially when one considers that if he has a gun mode, then there's no need for a Tank mode since that's just an excuse to give him a gun mode that moves. To me this just seems like the best solution.

And right onto Galvatron. Most of his modes are the same as Megatron - Tank, cybertronian jet, gun - and let's face it, the cannon mode falls into the same we-need-to-make-him-a-gun-but-not-a-gun category as a tank. This one does have the unique little thing of being immobile, however - which probably fits Galvatron well. He doesn't need to move and he doesn't need anyone to operate him. He just needs to blast a hole in your chest and crumble you to dust because he's Galvatron, dammit!

Ironically, that reasoning is also why a Tank is my preferred Galvatron alt-mode as it represents how he's psychologically different and, well, insane compared to Megatron. He doesn't need anyone's help or any teammates. He doesn't need any last resorts. All he needs is to shove a huge barrel of **** You Particle Cannon in your face. It's bulky, it's imposing, it's powerful, and it's just the right mode for someone as insane as this dude.

Buuut that's just my takes. What's your favourite mode - or modes, as it were - for the Megs and the Galvs? Do you like the mobility offered by actual vehicle modes, or is it difficult for you to imagine the Decepticon leader without being a gun?

... I think I made this way too long.

Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Tue May 16, 2017 9:33 pm
by Rodimus Prime
You know, I thought that was way too long as well, until I actually read it. Very good and concise post. ;)^

Let me get this out of the way 1st: I grew up on G1, especially the Marvel comics. The very 1st issue of Marvel comics I ever read was issue #13, titled "Shooting Star" and guess who the main (and only) Transformer character was? I've loved the Megatron character ever since. In the last 30-odd years since I've been a fan, I've loathed the character of Optimus Prime in almost all incarnations, except Optimus Primal from Beast Wars (who is technically a separate character, but still represents the Optimus of the series) and Fire Convoy from Car Robots. All other Optimus Primes make me want to gag. So, my emotional response is that my preferred Megatron alt mode is the Walther P-38. No stock, no longer barrel. Just the handgun. For Galvatron, same thing. Big tripod cannon with an orange noodle for a barrel.

Now, for my rational response. :-D

I think that Megatron, being the leader, should have an alt mode that best represents his personality, as well as one that is practical. (Which the gun is NOT, for reasons Kurona already mentioned.) For me, this would be the jet. The tank is a satisfactory alt mode, but it's not very practical, due to its lack of speed and maneuverability. Of course, it makes up for it in firepower and near-invulnerability, which is preferable, especially in hand-to-hand combat in robot mode, as we saw in the G2 comics. But for the purposes of being a supreme leader of an army, having to be all over the battle-field to make sure the fight is going your way, being a jet is preferable to be. It makes Megatron more mobile and if he has enough firepower he can fight better as well. The only downside is he's more vulnerable to attacks, especially when he's flying. So I guess both modes have their pros and cons. But if I had to choose, I would choose the jet mode. He had it in Prime, in Revenge of The Fallen, where technically he was a triple changer, and in Robots in Disguise, where it was 1 of 10 modes he had.

However, my favorite rational alt mode for Megatron is his truck mode from Dark of The Moon. It was big, ugly, powerful and menacing, just like Megatron himself. It was faster than a tank, yet probably still had the same destructive power, or close to it.

I did think Master Megatron's alt mode of a race car from Galaxy Force was a unique take on him, even though he was out of scale. Then I saw a digibash/customization of the toy into Rodimus's colors, and it just looked badass.

Galvatron? Like I said, the G1 tripod cannon will always be the iconic alt mode for me, but I think for him the jet mode is also the most fitting. His volatile personality requires that he be mobile and agile, and a tank or a cannon just can't do that. He has to be a plane in order to satisfy his constantly changing moods and needs. For this, my preferred Galvatron is the one from Super-Link.

Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 9:21 am
by shajaki
I've always had head-cannon for their alt modes. The hand gun and cannon modes to me are made useful by being more powerful than simply his arm cannon. Like, much more powerful. In bot mode their arm cannons are just a solitary blaster, but while in alt mode they draw on their entire body for power. Otherwise it's quite redundant.

What I prefer to see them as, is:
Megatron = tank
Galvatron = cannon/jet

I've always seen Megatron more as an powerful armored brute, whereas Galvatron as sleek(er) and fast but just as powerful.

Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Wed May 17, 2017 4:12 pm
by Kurona
shajaki wrote:I've always had head-cannon for their alt modes. The hand gun and cannon modes to me are made useful by being more powerful than simply his arm cannon. Like, much more powerful. In bot mode their arm cannons are just a solitary blaster, but while in alt mode they draw on their entire body for power. Otherwise it's quite redundant.

I'm the same way - hence why I appreciate the barrel of Megatron's gun mode not being his Fusion Cannon. The Fusion Cannon being as powerful as it is but only forming the scope of the gun is an indication of just how insanely over-the-top destructive that should be.

Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Sat May 27, 2017 10:17 pm
by SureShot18
While I don't mind Megatron being a gun, like Kurona said it can create some cool plot points, I prefer him to have the ability of air and land travel. So I like the idea of a helicopter, ala Animated, and a tank. The tank because it's a rolling gun and the helicopter because it's unique and a neat design. With a jet mode Megatron becomes too similar to Blitzwing or any of the Seekers. Megatron should stand out among his soldiers.

Galvatron, eh, he can be a tank or the classic cannon, doesn't really matter.

Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Sun May 28, 2017 8:33 am
by Tyrannacon
Personally? Alt-modes are variable to me and while I see them as an aspect of the particular aspect of the character's personality I understand that these are toys and kids will get away carting around a Megatron that is anything other than a gun or a traditional weapon fake looking or not. I do applaud the fact he did become a NERF gun for the classics line though. I felt that was a really good choice to pay respects to the original version in a lot of ways. Though as the world is changing it is problematic mostly due to people's often overly justified paranoia.

There is a specific charm about Megatron being a gun and Galvatron being an artillery cannon of sorts given that's how they were originally, but ideas evolve and so do character designs and society has evolved as well in a lot of ways. I do prefer Megatron as a tank though as it is more practical in today's world for kids to play with as well as the character's origins. A point made Kurtzman and Orci when they wrote the first 2007 movie linked Megatron's transformation of being a gun like Darth Vader morphing into his lightsaber and having someone wield him. I actually agreed with that heavily because there's something scary about the aspect of him not being a gun that makes it a bit more of credible threat as it requires no one to wield him to do damage. As for their choice, the Jet mode does work, but I prefer the flying space tank of doom and death from RotF.

Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Sun May 28, 2017 3:02 pm
by Black Hat
I've never liked Megatron as a gun, for the reasons already mentioned. My personal 3 favourite things for Megatron to turn into are:

>A tank: Self explanatory really. It's essentially a huge mobile gun, so thematically it works, and tanks are just cool. Plus it has an easy spot to incorporate the fusion cannon in the form of the tank barrel.
>An artillery piece/self-propelled gun: Basically taking the "gun on treads" analogy to its logical extreme. There's some amazing looking mobile artillery out there, some of which are more or less modified tanks anyway. I'm actually in the process of modifying a Universe Dropshot into Megatron, so he'll turn into a multiple rocket launcher vehicle (and have DOUBLE ARM CANNONS).
>A helicopter gunship. Jets are cool and all, but for an airborne Megatron I much prefer an armed and armoured helicopter, like the Hind D. They're huge, they're tough, and they're packed with enough weaponry to level a city block. They're pretty much flying tanks. And in Animated, Megatron turned into one! (Albeit a fictional one based on an Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft).

As for Galvatron, I think the TR toy got it right- a triple changer that can be either a cannon or a space jet.

Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Thu Jun 01, 2017 1:07 am
by Z3ROhour

Skullgrin megatron TFP 003.JPG
Skullgrin megatron TFP 003.JPG (101.09 KiB) Viewed 5795 times








Galvatron II G3.jpg



Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 3:03 pm
by Nacelle
I often make him a tank in my own fanfics as it is a very powerful alt mode when fits with how I often portray him as significantly stronger than most other deceptions.

Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2018 8:23 am
by AllNewSuperRobot

Galvatron is perfect just as he is. The Cannon is an instrument of brute force. His cunning and genius lay in his Bot Mode, The cannon is his most lethal response, when he tires of talk. It is fit for purpose. He doesn't need to be anything flashy. Basically, as I've always understood it, if he battles you in Bot Mode you have a chance at survival. If you see his Cannon Mode, you're dead. In that respect nothing better represents the dual aspects of his nature than such a simple, yet elegant design.

Megatron, I must admit, I was never a fan of him as a Gun Bot. As much as I have a soft spot for Mold variants (let alone what it means metaphorically for Megatron to be represented as a gun) it just always seemed a bit too.. unremarkable, to be the alt-mode to a Leader. Much like I've always viewed a mere jet or tank too ordinary, in light of the Decepticon ranks being full of both.

A leader, in a warrior based culture such as the Decepticons (or later Predacons) should represent the most powerful. To be at the head of such a feudal society, you have to show in all forms, you reign supreme. To me, there is only one alt-mode that ticks all those boxes, although I personally don't use this name for the toy itself...


Re: Your preferred Megatron and Galvatron Alt-Mode(s)

PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2018 7:18 pm
by Nacelle
Nacelle wrote:I often make him a tank in my own fanfics as it is a very powerful alt mode when fits with how I often portray him as significantly stronger than most other deceptions.

Currently, this is the sort of tank I have for Megatron.
And this one is kinda similar to the one I pictured for Galvatron.