Our starting point is Oracle
, the keeper of the Autobot data ArkHive. The idea is that the Hive is the library — established after the 'Cons took power — where all Autobot data is stored and analysed. As part of this, subsets of Oracle's massive intelligence — think of them as like Jamie Maddrox's dupes, only more Borg-like — are routinely embedded in Autobot combat units where they function as a combination of war correspondant and network hub (essentially, technological equivalent to the secure telepathic link used by J’onn or M’gann). Every so often, a subset is returned to the central intelligence and reassimilated in order to disseminate what it has experienced and is replaced in the field with another subset. As a result, subsets tend not to have a lot of personality. And like the Navajo Codetalkers of WWII, they're typically killed if there's any chance of the 'Cons taking them prisoner.
Our particular subset — let us call her Oracle-1
— ends up with a commando unit ultimately consisting of:
- Arc Knight, the group's leader. Enlisted in the war after his loom-matrix — the means by which new transformers in this mashup are born — was destroyed by the 'Cons. Prefers to cripple and maim 'Cons rather than kill them because for them that is a fate worse than death (the 'Cons have a concept of a digital Valhalla with similar entry rules to ours). Alt mode is typically some form of high-performance ‘muscle car’ vehicle, given a brooding and gothic makeover (ie, the Batmobile).
- Nightwing, the scout. Comes from the same loom-matrix as Arc Knight, but sports a far more devil-may-care attitude to the mission despite his mentor’s every ‘This is serious’ attempt, sort of a response to his agile frame meaning he tends not to slug it out with enemy ‘Cons. Alt mode is a next-gen VTOL craft with a similar aesthetic to Knight’s bodywork (ie, the Batwing).
- Hood, the good soldier. Survivor of another loom-matrix who signed on to Knight’s payback mission, but makes no bones about the only way to deal with ‘Cons being to kill them as quickly and often as possible. Alt mode is always dark red, originally a muscle car that is smaller and less intimidating than his mentor’s, reflecting his more direct approach.
- Huntress, the sniper. Another loom-matrix orphan, she joined the group around the same time as Hood and shares his attitude towards 'Cons but she has no problem hurting them real bad when she’s asked to. Alt mode is originally a ‘motorcycle’ similar to Oracle-1.
When the team hit Earth, those four + Oracle-1 are the only survivors and they've got no way back. They lay low in a cave system outside Gotham and Oracle hooks into the internet to learn about their new home where she encounters teen hacker Tim Drake
and strikes up a friendship, using him as a lens through which to study humanity. As Oracle-1 and Huntress are the smallest members of the team — less than a storey high in anthro mode — they are able to physically interact with the human world in the way the others can't without attracting undue attention.
It turns out that there are two 'Cons prowling the city — Joker
— looking for lost property: three small ‘blank’ protoforms. It turns out that the Decepticon commander, Bane, is aware of the stranded 'Bots and doesn’t want the exiles to get their hands on potential reinforcements before a larger 'Con force arrives on Earth. As a result of this search, there are soon some impressively
This in turn leads to an ongoing investigation headed up by detectives Renee Montoya
and her new partner Barbara Gordon
Naturally the enemies meet up, with the 'Cons cornering Hood. They almost kill him until Huntress intervenes, mortally wounding Joker and ripping off half of Dent’s face in the process. A parting shot as he flees with two of the protoforms devastates Huntress, but the arrival of the rest of the 'Bots arrive results in one of Dent’s protoforms being lost, though both sides mistakingly assume it has been destroyed…
The battle intensifies the bond between the two ‘H-bots’. In order to recover from their injuries, they canabalise Joker’s body between them, adding enough armour (and thus mass) to move from their original motorcycle and musclecar alt-forms to a matched set of a Lamborghini Gallardo
and a Lamborghini SUV
. If it came down to it, Huntress and Hood would probably now save each other before any other member of the team.
The protoform recovered by the ‘Bots, though containing Decepticon base-code, is reprogrammed by Arc Knight and Oracle-1, and jokingly named Robin by Nightwing as a reference to having been stolen from the ‘Cons. Aggressive and prideful, the new ‘Bot of necessity adopts a motorcycle alt mode, deriding Huntress for surrendering the nimbleness of hers.
As the season continues…
- Stephanie Brown, a parkour-using misfit with a grudge, discovers the missing protoform. Unable to speak, and with her native 'Con source code corrupted due to being damaged, she is named Black Bot by Steph. Together, they fight crime!
- Bane punishes Dent for his failure by forbidding him from repairing the damage to his face. As a result, Dent begins to slowy continue disfiguring his injured side.
- Renee and Barbara cross paths with Steph and Black Bot, which ultimately leads to the four of them discovering the Autobots — and the Decepticons.
- The protoform Dent managed to retrieve is activated and names herself Harliquin (alt mode is a Harley Davison). It is eventually revealed that unbeknown to the other ‘Cons she has been infected by the remnant of Joker’s ‘spark’, placed there during the battle with Huntress and Hood as his final act.
- Bane arrives in Gotham — not from outerspace, but Venezuela, where the ‘Con ship crashed and is being canibalised to build a space bridge. He’s basically built exactly like Optimus Prime but with a black paint job.
- Contact is re-established with Cybertron. Oracle Prime demands the usual reintegration of Oracle-1, who has no wish to lose her newly gained autonomy.
- Tim Drake is revealed as a member of Task Force X, a black ops group which wants to bring the 'Bots under their control... or eliminate them.