Transformers: Every Major Faction In The Franchise


  • Transformers
    lore expands beyond Autobots and Decepticons to include various factions with unique intentions and impacts.
  • From the fierce Autobot Aerialbots to the uncontrollable Decepticon Stunticons, Combiner teams play a pivotal role in battles.
  • Mysterious factions like Quintessons and dangerous groups like Reapers add depth and complexity to the



When Transformers fans hear the word “faction,” chances are two groups come to mind: Optimus Prime and the heroic Autobots, and Megatron and his villainous Decepticons. After all, it’s been these two groups that have remained at odds against one another regardless of the Transformers series they’re in. However, fans would also be quick to realize that there are more factions in the Transformers universe beyond the two iconic groups.

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Newcomers to the Transformers franchise might be surprised to learn that there are a multitude of other Transformers factions that have a stake in what’s to happen to the future of Cybertron as well as their fellow Transformers. Moreover, some of them have more power than fans would realize, and may even turn the tide of the war between Autobots and Decepticons should they choose a side.

Updated on May 27th, 2024, by Rhenn Taguiam: With September’s Transformers One exploring the origins of Optimus Prime and Megatron’s rivalry in the last days of Cybertron, fans and newcomers to the Transformers franchise may be interested in just what its lore can offer outside the ages-old rivalry between the Autobots and the Decepticons. Interestingly enough, fans may be surprised to learn that other factions and sub-factions exist within and beyond these two iconic teams – each with their own intentions and impact in the world of Transformers. Included among these special factions are the first of the Autobots’ and the Decepticons’ combined squads, a Combiner squad known for being rowdy and out of control, and even the supposed creators of the Transformers, all of which have been added to this list in its latest update, giving a complete overview of all the major factions in Transformers.

20 Aerialbots

1st Combining Special Autobot Team


While Combiners in Transformers are essentially more of a rare sub-species capable of fusing their bodies together, their allegiances also sparked the creation of teams within their respective factions. Among the Autobots are the Aerialbots, essentially the first special Combiner team of the protagonists, who form the over-eager Superion.

Surprisingly enough, the Aerialbots were only formed after the Decepticons created their own Combiner team to fight the Autobots. It’s only thanks to Alpha Trion’s intervention that the Aerialbots managed to come to life, with their existence attributed to the mysterious ancient Transformer. In Generation 1 continuity, the Aerialbots’ Superion is often shown as being too goofy for his own good. However, the Aerialbots concept has also been carried over to various timelines, often with the implication that creating Superion via Combiners can turn the tide against impossible battles.

19 Stunticons

The Infamous Aggressive Decepticon Combiners


Perhaps among the first demonstrations of Megatron’s adaptability as a leader, the Stunticons were born out of a desire for the Decepticons to contend with the Autobots in land-based combat. Taking the form of race cars, Megatron’s creations were brought to the supercomputer Vector Sigma to be given extremely hateful personalities. This unfortunately resulted in an infamously aggressive sub-team that even Megatron couldn’t control.

The Stunticons were originally the first Combiners in the Transformers series, with their combined form Menasor having the same destructive personality, making them difficult to defeat. Regardless of the continuity, the Stunticons were known for their extreme aggression. This has also been used against them, as their hubris and tendency for internal bickering gives the Autobots a much-needed opening to disable Menasor, separate the Stunticons, and disable them entirely.

18 Terrorcons

Often Depicted As Ancient Or Elite Decepticons


While the menacing name “Terrorcons” already implies their association with the Decepticons, their existence in Transformers lore is unique in how they’re often associated with different origins and purposes. Perhaps the most famous iteration of the Terrorcons would be their Generation 1 counterpart, where their first appearance positioned them as a Combiner team to form Abominus. In this appearance, the Terrorcons often switched allegiances between the Decepticons and their creators, the Quintessons – both of whom are usually up to no good, involving the Terrorcons in complex plots (that often blow up in their faces).

Other iterations of the Terrorcons are rather unique in their nature and mission. For instance, the Terrorcons are Energon-manipulating Decepticons in the Unicorn Trilogy, while they are heroes in the reverse-alignment Shattered Glass. Meanwhile, the Terrorcons are an undead army in Transformers Prime, whereas they are Unicron’s enforcers in the Rise of the Beasts live-action film.

17 Constructicons

The Original Combining Decepticons


When fans of the Transformers series hear the term “combining Transformers,” the Constructicons may come to mind. Aside from being a part of the Combiners sub-group, the Constructicons were indeed the first of the fusing robots that Hasbro imported in 1985 from the Diaclone franchise. After their introduction as special Combiners who can form the powerful Devastator, the Constructicons have become a staple sub-faction within the Decepticons throughout their incarnations.

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For instance, Constructicons in Energon are known as the powerful Construction Team, while they become a medic team in the reverse-alignment world of Shattered Glass. Some iterations also transformed Constructicons into smaller-sized Micromasters, like in in the Unicron trilogy, and the more tragic Mini-Constructicons who were assistants of the Decepticon Ramjet.

16 Quintessons

Mysterious Intergalactic Traders Who Created The Transformers


In the original Transformers series, it’s revealed that the Transformers didn’t “naturally” blossom as technological marvels on Cybertron. Instead, they were actually creations of mysterious technological aliens known as the Quintessons – intergalactic traders who rely heavily on their manufactured machines to function as a society. As it turns out, the Quintessons originally created the Autobots as domestic robots and the Decepticons as soldiers. However, they were booted out of Cybertron by the Autobot A-3, who eventually became Alpha Trion – the oldest living Transformer.

After their ejection from Cybertron, the Quintessons spent the ensuing millions of years conspiring against their creations. While they are often defeated by the Transformers on both sides, Quintessons across Transformer media follow a familiar pattern in their appearances: they demonstrate their business and political acumen in manipulating others to do their bidding, they create powerful robots who eventually betray them, and they always come back with another convoluted scheme.


Film Equivalent Of An Earth Defense Force


While not necessarily a faction with Cybertronians, NEST or Non-Biological Extraterrestrial Species Treaty is an interesting take on a human-led Transformers faction throughout the Bayverse continuity. In the canon, NEST was born as the result of the disbandment of Sector Seven, with spec ops soldiers from the US and the UK teaming up with Autobots in their efforts to fight Decepticons after the momentous battle of Mission City.

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What makes NEST an interesting faction to explore is the way it represents humanity when forced to immediately react to an extraterrestrial threat. Despite their success in defeating the Fallen, NEST’s control over alien technology made them a global power in the enforcement of human affairs. While disbanded after the Battle of Chicago, a splinter CIA group called Cemetery Wind started to assassinate both Autobots and Decepticons alike – an effort exacerbated by the Transformers-killing Transformers Reaction Force. NEST was reborn anew in humanity’s efforts in stopping the collision between Earth and Cybertron.

14 Earth Defense Command

Earth-Based Forces Against Evil Transformers

Marissa Faireborn of Earth Defense Command

Perhaps the most comprehensive iteration of a human-led faction in the Transformers universe would be Earth Defense Command, a joint initiative by the planet’s nations to protect Earth from various Cybertronian threats. While similar in nature to NEST, the Earth Defense Command had more interactions with both Autobots and Decepticons throughout various incarnations of the Transformers series.

In the original cartoons, the EDC had numerous stations designed to monitor traffic throughout the Solar System and even integrate Cybertronian tech in human vehicles to keep up with Transformers in combat. Meanwhile, the GI Joe-related Wings Universe had the EDC assist in building cyberfactories to create Transformers that are classified as citizens of Earth who eventually took sides in the Autobot-Decepticon War. Its iterations in both the “Generation One” versions of the Dreamwave and IDW comics had the EDC become the department in charge to improve Human-Autobot relations as well as prepare for Cybertronian threats.

13 Vehicons

Foot Soldiers Within The Decepticons

A Vehicon

Perhaps the equivalent of Stormtroopers in the Transformers universe, Vehicons are Cybertronians who mainly serve as Decepticon foot soldiers. They’re notable for their consistent black-purple color schemes, with sub-classes called Seekers sporting white-black-silver forms. Although their origins are relatively unknown, Vehicons have been shown to exist as early as the first war in Cybertron before the Cybertronians’ arrival on Earth.

Despite their intended purpose as cannon fodder for Decepticons, Vehicons boast some of the cooler alternate forms among Transformers. Vehicons often come as sleek sports cars, stealth tanks, heavily-armed helicopters, as well as jets.

12 Ultracons

A More Strategic Variant Of The Decepticons


While Transformers forming splinter groups from within their respective factions isn’t new, the Ultracons hold the distinction as one of the more unique sub-groups in the Transformers franchise for its more story-tied origins. When Optimus Prime and Megatron appeared to have died in a space bridge alongside Starscream’s coup attempt among the Decepticons, High Auditor Ratbat gathered some loyalists to create their splinter faction. Dubbed the Ultracons, this faction believes the war against Autobots could be won more efficiently with a smaller force that can control their access to resources.

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Despite Autobot factions such as the Wreckers and the Protectobots stopping the Ultracons from gaining more influence in other areas of Cybertron, the Ultracons became a notable splinter group for making history. Unlike other sub-factions in this era, only the Ultracons had access to a Combiner in the form of the Constructicons. This effectively defied the Crisis Intervention Accord between Autobots and Decepticons that proposed powerful Combiners to become non-aligned.

11 Reapers

Living Weapons Created For Destruction


The Reapers in the Transformers franchise may hold the distinction as one of the most unique factions out there courtesy of their origins. Not only does no one know where they come from, but they’re also not necessarily Transformers. Essentially “living weapons” who want to destroy everything to pursue their version of peace, this band of destructive beings will fight anything that crosses paths with them.

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The fire-breathing dragon-like alien Klaxa is the only Reaper ever named in the franchise, with a Deathbringer sentient mechanoid being their leader. Other Reapers include someone who looks like a raven, a hooded Reaper with an unrecognizable body, a Reaper with a penchant for spinning around, and a Mechanoid Reaper who looks like a tank. Their indeterminate origin and functions as well as the implication that they don’t listen to reason make Reapers one of the most dangerous villain factions in the franchise.

10 Cybertronians

The Main Species Of Transforming Robots


Not to be confused with the original Cybertronians, the new Cybertronian faction was born soon after the Ark that carried both the Autobots and Decepticons crashed on Earth. With no direct line of communication between the Decepticons on Cybertron and Megatron, the Decepticons back in Cybertron were in dire need of new soldiers. This predicament led to the rediscovery of budding, a Cybertronian reproduction method via mitosis.

While budding did enable Decepticons to form new Transformers, they did so without the influence of Primus. As such, the new generation of Decepticons and their descendants were devoid of any morals, and eventually abolished ideologies reflected by both Autobots and Decepticons. Now simply Cybertronians, they’ve acknowledged Cybertron as a barren wasteland and have begun cyberforming other planets to be compatible for their survival, with a view of themselves as a superior species.

9 Autobots

Protects The Earth As Their New Home


Perhaps the most iconic faction in the Transformers franchise, the Autobots are known to defend themselves and other races against the evil Decepticons, all for ideals of freedom, justice, and peace throughout the galaxy. Given their rather pacifist nature, Autobots tend to choose non-aggressive transformation modes, such as cars and trucks.

During the war, the Autobots learned how to use more combative modes as well. Originally the only kind of Transformer out there, the birth of the Decepticons led to members that vastly outnumbered the Autobots. It was through the intervention of Optimus Prime that the Autobots were able to turn the tide in the harsh war for Cybertron’s future. And when Optimus Prime and the rest of the Autobots got sent to Earth through the Ark, it became the Autobots’ new mission to protect this new planet.

8 Decepticons

Domination Is Their Ultimate Objective


Opposite the Autobots are the Decepticons, Transformers who want nothing but pure control over their planet and domination over others. The faction is primarily more concerned with amassing power and exerting it over the galaxy, with goals such as developing weapons, securing energon resources, and defeating the Autobots. Given their aggressive nature, Decepticons chose more combative machinery as their alternate modes.

Unlike the Autobots that almost always have a Matrix-bearing Prime as their leader, the Decepticons simply follow the one who is the strongest among them. Aside from this tenet causing internal conflict among their ranks, this does mean the Decepticons also have members of different motivations – greed, power, and aggressive expansion of Cybertron.

7 Maximals

Heroic Animal Transformers


In the far future of Cybertron, the Great Upgrade affected Autobots and provided smaller, more fuel-efficient bodies. Now called Maximals, they easily became the predominant species of the planet and effectively became its leaders. As with the Autobots, the Maximals are mostly “civilian” in terms of upbringing, often upholding the views of their ancestors regarding democracy and freedom.

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Taking after the pacifist nature of the Autobots, the Maximals also have rather civil and non-combative beast modes. These tend to be in the form of mammals, fish, and birds, although some Maximals can become dinosaurs, reptiles, and insects. Now led by Optimus Primal, the Maximals aim to preserve life in the new Cybertron.

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6 Predacons

Predatory Animal Transformers


In the far future of Cybertron, the Predacons slowly developed a hatred towards both Maximals and Autobots as they seek to dominate through cunning and brute strength. While their origins differ depending on the universe, Predacons are almost always either Decepticon descendants or new Cybertronians that took their name out of the Decepticon sub-faction.

Similar to Megatron of the Decepticons, a Megatron also leads the Predacons. This time around, Megatron named himself after his ancestor and sought the original Megatron’s vision of traveling back in time to ensure the war on Cybertron happened in favor of the Decepticons. Armed with his unique brand of cunning and scheming, Megatron transformed the Predacons into a force to be reckoned with.

5 Mini-Cons

Human-Sized Transformers Buffers


Due to the nature of Transformers as capable of interfacing with any type of machine, the Mini-Cons demonstrated it’s completely possible to become human-sized instead. Although identical in terms of basic appearance to any Transformer, Mini-Cons have the unique ability to Powerlinx with a Transformer, either boosting their base abilities or even providing them access to unique weapons.

Although they remain a neutral faction nowadays, the Mini-Cons had a sinister origin. While the war on Cybertron was raging, Unicron created the Mini-Cons to blend in with the populace and, upon activation, bond with them and generate more chaos. It’s through this negativity that Unicron would supposedly rise and devour Cybertron. Thankfully, the efforts of Autobots helped the Mini-Cons gain their independence.

4 Dinobots

The Autobots’ Fiercest Warriors


Separate from the next-generation Maximals and Primals, the original Dinobots are a subgroup of the original Autobots. Considered some of its fiercest warriors, the Dinobots possess alternate modes based on fearsome dinosaurs. However, despite being an Autobot subgroup, the Dinobots don’t necessarily like the Autobots as they see them as either cowardly or weak to take extreme measures needed in combat.

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This was because their original purpose was to destroy anything too strong for Autobots to handle, which also contributed to their attitudes being rowdy and aggressive. Some also view the Dinobots as disobedient and with a penchant for pranks, notable for their jokes that often escalate into fights.

3 Combiners

A Sub-Species Of Combining Transformers


One of the most notable qualities of Transformers is their ability to combine, but not all Transformers are capable of doing this. Known as Combiners, various Transformers can combine through different means. For instance, various Combiners are groups compatible with each other that form a Super Robot. Meanwhile, Gestalts are combination robots that have one dominant personality. A Scramble City Combiner, meanwhile, is a Super Robot with interchangeable limbs.

Regardless, Combiners find their first origins in the Constructicons, created by Shockwave and imbued with life from Optimus Prime’s Creation Matrix. In some instances, Megatron brainwashed the original Constructicons into working with the Decepticons. In the comics, a being known as Nexus Prime wielded the Enigma of Combination, a relic capable of bestowing the power of combination to anyone its wielder desired.

2 Junkions

Scrap-Based Robots


Perhaps one of the most intriguing Transformers factions out there, Junkions are Transformers that inhabit the planetoid Junkion. Unlike typical Transformers, their physical forms are more or less made out of trash metal from their homeworld. However, despite how this radically alters their appearance, being “scrap-made” made Junkions extremely resilient. Not only are they extremely difficult to kill, but they’ve routinely learned how to repair themselves quickly out of spare parts and even salvage injuries on Transformers that Cybertronian science would deem irreversible.

Oddly enough, Junkions also formed an obsession with Earth broadcasting, with much of their culture and speech made out of clippings from radio and television. This also made Junkions a bit playful and mischievous, and not outside using dirty tricks to gain the upper hand when engaged in combat.

1 Rescue Bots

Junior Autobots In The Making

Rescue Bots

Coming from the television show Transformers: Rescue Bots, the Rescue Bots are a team of specialized Autobots designated to stay within Fire Station Prime to use their skills to help others. Although from a show geared towards children, it’s interesting to note that Optimus Prime himself selected the Autobots that would become the Rescue Bots, now officially under Rescue Force Sigma-17.

Interestingly enough, the show would eventually feature Rescue Bot Training Academy students, all Transformers training to become Autobots to be sent on real missions. Despite being part of a kid’s show, the Rescue Bots offers an interesting look towards modern-day training to become a part of a well-known faction of Transformers.

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