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- 1 Transformers: Generation 1
- 2 Transformers: Generation 2
- 3 Transformers: Robots in Disguise
- 4 Transformers: Energon
- 5 Transformers: Classics
- 6 Live-action films
- 7 Transformers: Prime
- 8 References
Transformers: Generation 1
The two Decepticons had very distinct personalities. Dreadwind was a pessimist, constantly taking the "glass is half empty" view (somewhat reminiscent of the Stunticon Dead End). The other Decepticons, bar Darkwing, avoid him, as they know he'll only depress them more. While Dreadwind does inspire dread on the battlefield, this only gets him even further down. Dreadwind transforms into an F-16 Fighting Falcon jet. His partner is the Nebulan Hi-Test. Hi-Test is the polar opposite of Dreadwind, who enjoys danger, and tries to get his partner to cheer up.
Dreadwind may be an eternal pessimist, but his partner Darkwing is actually worse - a manic-depressive who believes that life is just one long road of suffering and pain. While Dreadwind accepts his lot in life, Darkwing wants to make others feel worse than he does - via his electro-kinetic blasters if at all possible. He uses these to inflict unspeakable agonies upon his victims, considering that they at least can die and be done with it, while he still has to suffer. Darkwing transforms into a Tornado jet. Darkwing is partnered with the Nebulan Throttle. Throttle is a thief and a general crook. However, he is extremely honest, making it easier for Darkwing to get along with him.
Although one would think that the two would be perfect partners, the two despise each other, and especially detest merging into their combined mode of Dreadwing, where they bicker and continually try to depress each other further.
Darkwing and Dreadwind are considered highly collectable. Their designs are such that each toy has several points of possible failure. even from moderate use. This is compounded by the fact that they were released in the 1988 line, which was after the peak popularity of the Generation One brand, meaning lower production numbers. Consequently, examples in good condition can fetch a premium.
The peaceful planet of Nebulos had earlier been visited by the Autobots and Decepticons in Marvel Comics’ Transformers series, and when they departed, only ruin was left in their wake. To prevent such horrors from occurring again, Nebulan scientist Hi-Q detonated a bomb in the planet’s atmosphere which “poisoned” the planet’s various fuel supplies and resources – although harmless to Nebulans, the “poison” was toxic to Transformers. This was the fate which befell Dreadwind and Darkwing when they came to the planet looking for the departed Scorponok, and refuelled from Nebulan resources, causing their bodies to cease functioning. Their rotting, immobile hulks soon became tourist attractions.
Meanwhile, Hi-Q’s jealous partner, Hi-Test, had vowed to outdo his contemporary, and hired criminal Throttle to steal Hi-Q’s latest fuel conversion theories, which he had dubbed the “Powermaster Process.” Using this data, Hi-Test bio-engineered his and Throttle’s bodies, and offered partnership to Dreadwind and Darkwing, who accepted; the two Nebulans transformed into engines and connected to them, supplying them with untainted energy direct from their own bodies. The Powermasters ran roughshod over the planet, but were eventually defeated by a new team of Powermasters, including Hi-Q himself, bonded with Optimus Prime, and exiled from Nebulos.
Dreadwind and Darkwing soon entered into a partnership with the robot-eating Mecannibals, hiding their own robot nature by dealing through Hi-Test and Throttle, whose job it was to find other robots for the Mecannibals to feast upon. Setting their sights upon Autobot Pretenders Landmine and Cloudburst, the Decepticons lured them into the Mecannibals clutches, but in a strange twist of fate, the Pretenders were sent to gather spices to improve their flavour. Dreadwind and Darkwing pursued them to make things difficult, but when the fact that they were robots was revealed to the Mecannibals, Landmine and Cloudburst departed while Dreadwing and Darkwind fled.
The Mecannibals pursued the two Powermasters to Cybertron, where they took an assignment from Megatron to acquire the body of the deceased Decepticon, Starscream, hoping it would allow them to shake off their pursuers. Heading to Earth, they discovered that the energies of the Underbase that had destroyed Starscream continued to animate his corpse, but when Throttle and Hi-Test drained them away, they took the body back to Megatron for revival as a Pretender. Megatron’s subsequent apparent death put the duo out of work, however, and they drowned their sorrows at Maccadam’s Old Oil House, where they remained drunkenly unaware of some Mecannibals that had picked up their trail being dispatched by the Autobot Quickswitch. Dreadwind and Darkwing participated in the attack on Unicron when the chaos-bringer assaulted Cybertron, and survived to serve under Bludgeon’s leadership, aiding in the raid on planet Klo, where they killed the Autobot Getaway.
Of the two, Dreadwind was a particular favorite character of series writer Simon Furman, and served a long stint as the character who answered reader’s queries on the letters page of the UK’s exclusive Transformers title.
The American Transformers series ended in 1987, one year before Dreadwind and Darkwing were released. As the Transformers were originally manufactured in Japan by Takara, Takara produced their own spin-offs to the original series. Transformers: Super God Masterforce was the second of these and featured characters produced for 1988. As part of a different storyline, Dreadwing and Darkwing were recolored slightly (dark blue pieces of both Transformers were molded in red) and reinvented as the mighty Godmaster brothers, Buster and Hydra. They were also referred to as the Darkwings (perhaps as a nod to their American counterparts).
The lifeless mechanoid bodies known as "Transtectors" which would come to be owned by Buster and Hydra were stolen from a region of space called the G Nebula by the evil energy entity and self-styled "Decepticon God," Devil Z. Some years after the Decepticons were banished from Earth by the Autobots in 2011, Devil Z recruited two human beings, Lord Giga and Lady Mega, to find human partners for the Transtectors. A pair of brothers from Germany were soon found and bonded to two jet Transtectors, given the power to summon the Masterforce and transform into engines that allowed the jets to assume robot mode; Hydra, a master disguise artist and actor who plied his trade in the deadliest way as an assassin for the American criminal underworld; and the younger Buster, as cool as his elder brother, but more suave and amiable, and with a love of birds. Able to wield the power of lightning and wind, respectively, and to heal from any damage almost instantaneously, the two brothers can merge their Transtectors into the giant jet, Darkwings.
A string of defeats from the Autobot Godmaster Ginrai throughout their time serving as Decepticons eventually prompted Buster and Hydra to seek new ways to increase their power. Whereas Giga and Mega embraced the human aspect of their nature as Godmasters, Buster and Hydra rejected it, feeling that it was this which made them weak, and requested that Devil Z transform them permanently into entirely robotic beings. The villain did so, and Buster and Hydra were fused with their Transtectors as true robots, but even with this power, they proved unable to best Ginrai, and when Devil Z was destroyed, they fled into space with the other Transtectors that he had brought to life.
Darkwing & Dreadwind appeared under Simon Furman again, making their IDW Publishing debut in The Transformers: Stormbringer miniseries. Darkwing commands the Decepticon cell operating on Nebulos and when Thunderwing attacked the planet, Darkwing made the call to assist the Nebulans in an attempt to stop Thunderwing before he destroyed them along with the rest of the planet. Though showing a degree of leadership skill in this continuity, Darkwing also displays an amount of cowardice when both he and Dreadwind abandoned the battle at the earliest opportunity when Thunderwing's power was made evident.
- Generation 1 Powermaster Dreadwing
Transformers: Generation 2
In a few years' time Hasbro would revamp the TF toy line under the working title Generation 2, thus again licensing Marvel the rights to publish a TF comics series and thereby relaunch the old Transformers title as Transformers: Generation 2. Marvel in turn hired former TF writer Simon Furman to compose the new issue installments which would serve as engaging newsstand advertisements for Hasbro's reintroduced product. Furman's approach was to begin a fresh start although attempting to continue the previous TF storyline which he'd left off on, and it was in this way that the character of Darkwing would undergo a startling transformation. In #5 when an upgraded Megatron returned in super-power to reclaim leadership of the Decepticons from Bludgeon, Darkwing would attempt a sneak aerial attack on Megatron that resulted in his destruction by Megatron's enhanced offensive systems. Oddly enough, the aircraft depicted seemed to more resemble Dreadwind than Darkwing, although the design did not actually fit either Decepticon's jetmode nor their combined aeroform Dreadwing.
The following issue would see a deactivated Darkwing being repaired by Frenzy & Rumble, and #7 presented the new Darkwing in jetmode (a stealth bomber) attacking a mining operation on the planet Tykos in a move by the Decepticons to pirate the metal-strengthening gas Rheanimum. Beyond this point, Darkwing did not appear again in the G2 comic series, to say nothing of Dreadwind. The character was portrayed in issues 4 through 7, each time merely to be found on only but a single page of the given comic book; and in these few appearances, Darkwing never had one line assigned in the script.
The toy which "Darkwing" was based on was released to mass-market as Dreadwing (the first usage of the name for a singular TF character) & Smokescreen (a name previously assigned to a certain Autobot); note that in European markets the toy was packaged as Ace\Evader and Stealth\Assault. These molds were eventually recolored as a new G2 version of Megatron & Starscream, though this concept was abandoned and the product never received a mass release. In the G2 comic book storyline, writer Furman ever-so briefly depicted this prominent action figure duo (Dreadwing\Smokescreen) as the wrong character altogether, and allowing no character development at that. (Interestingly though this treatment was more than most other G2 jet-based Decepticon toys received.) This in itself did not serve Hasbro's marketing interests.
The smaller Smokescreen stealth aircraft, a Northrop MRF "Switchblade" developmental concept, is designed to lock into the mid-rear of the larger Dreadwing, a Northrop Grumman ATB-2 conceptual jet. When Smokescreen is disengaged, Dreadwing can additionally transform into a missile tank. The MRF [Multi-Role Fighter] is outfitted with two wing-mounted long-range missile launchers, while the stealth flying wing\tank is equipped with a massive six-shooting anti-tank missile gatling-launcher (comparable to the Soviet Штурм anti-tank missile system used in aircraft produced by Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant of Russia). The launcher is fixed to Dreadwing's shoulder when in robotic mode, much like as with the 1984 Soundwave toy.
- Transformers Voyager Dreadwing and Scout Smokescreen (2010)
- A Tokyo Toy Show exclusive in Japan, this figure is a blue redeco of Voyager Mindwipe, while Smokescreen is a blue redeco of Scout Skystalker. This figure set is an homage to the Generation 2 Dreadwing & Smokescreen tandem. In keeping with the homage, both Dreadwing and Smokescreen sport Generation 2 Decepticon symbols.
Transformers: Robots in Disguise
A homage to the Generation 1 character, Dreadwing is the combined version of Dreadwind and Smokejumper (instead of Darkwing). The duo are presumably homages to G2 Dreadwing and Smokescreen. Dreadwing did not appear in any fiction.
- Robots in Disguise Dreadwind and Smokejumper (2003)
- Dreadwind is a green redeco of Generation 2 Dreadwing; the same mold was used for ATB Megatron and Beast Wars Second BB. He came packaged with his partner Smokejumper.
- Smokejumper is a redeco of Generation 2 Smokescreen.
- The two figures can combine to form Dreadwing.
The first Dreadwing toy bearing no relation to any of the past holders of the name or its components, the Transformers: Energon incarnation of Dreadwing has been cloned from the "corrupt" spark of Mirage, lacking in all emotion and considered pure evil. Even his fellow Decepticons admit that he brings a chill to the air, as he swoops upon the Autobots like a plague. He pledges allegiance to no cause or goal beyond the termination of anything and everything that stands in his way.
- Energon Mega Dreadwing
- Dreadwing is a redeco of the Energon Mirage toy, transforming into a Cybertronic speedboat/hydrofoil. Pressing a button on his deck causes a pair of spring-loaded missile launchers to pop up; this assembly forms a backpack for robot mode that turns them into over-shoulder cannons. The boat's rear section features another pair of spring-loaded missile launchers, plus fold-down "flight wings". These form forearm-mounted weapons in robot mode.
- This toy was redecoed into Timelines Banzai-Tron.
Dreadwing is a part of the Predator Attack Mini-Con team and transforms into an eagle. He is not related to any previous Transformer of the same name.
He had a biography printed in issue #17 of the Transformers Collectors Club magazine, which described him as an all business hunter who is feared even by his own teammates.
- Classic Mini-Con Dreadwing (2007)
- This toy was later redecoed into the Takara exclusive Mini-Con Wedge Shape and Shattered Glass Divebomb.
Dreadwing is the name of a Decepticon who appeared in the toy line and video game tie-ins for the 2007 live action Transformers movie. He turns into a blue camouflage (gray in the video game) MiG-29 "Fulcrum" with drop tanks.
According to his bio, Dreadwing is a born thief with the power of teleportation.
According to the biography printed in the Reign of Starscream compilation, the Dreadwing-style drones are called Class Alpha Drone Units. Dreadwing started out as one of the drones but is the most developed of them, and serves as their controller among the Decepticons.
Dreadwing is featured on the cover of Tomart's Action Figure Digest #159.
Dreadwing appears in Transformers: Defiance by IDW Publishing. In issue #2 he sides with Megatron in his decision to counter-attack Cybertron's invaders and is among the fleet that attacked their ships. He commanded the drone forces.
Dreadwing style drones appear among the Decepticon army in the first issue of the IDW Publishing Transformers: Movie Prequel.
In The Reign of Starscream issue #3 Dreadwing appears among the Decepticon troops on Cybertron. He sees to recovering the memory banks from the body of Frenzy and delivering them to Starscream. In issue #4 Arcee returns to Cybertron from Mars by hiding in the landing gear of Starscream's ship. Once on the planet she is discovered by a Dreadwing and Payload drone, who she deactivates. In issue #5 Starscream sacrifices the sparks of Crankcase, Elita One, Grindcore, Signal Flare, and Warpath to bring his new Allspark Cube online. Although the cube fails to function Starscream doesn't have time to find out why as Dreadwing makes his bid to overthrow the Decepticons using his army of drones. Most Decepticons side with Dreadwing, except Thundercracker, who remaines loyal to his leader. Crosshairs beheaded Ramjet and the Autobots are able to deactivate the drones as Starscream overcomes Dreadwing's remaining forces, including Divebomb. Dreadwing escapes to the Nemesis, but is followed by Starscream. Crashing on Mars Dreadwing thinks he was free, but Starscream has followed and kills Dreadwing before turning his eye to Earth.
Note - The appearance of Dreadwing is modified in the IDW Publishing stories so that he has a Cybertronian alternate mode.
In Transformers: The Game, Dreadwing appears as solo-class drones for the Autobot & Decepticon armies. Autobot versions have eyes with a mask, & their primary color is blue with yellow markings. Decepticon versions have a lens-head & their color is grey camo. Both versions can launch deadly flamethrowers & a ring-of-fire. Dreadwing is playable in the PSP version.
Dreadwing style drones were sent to attack Optimus Prime in a story called "Prelude: Optimus Prime" from issue #1 of the Transformers magazine by Titan Magazines. They were unsuccessful and Optimus launched the Allspark into space.
Dreadwing style drones patrol the sky of the United States in "Twilight's Last Gleaming, Part 1".
Starscream briefly mentioned his betrayal by Dreadwing on Cybertron.
- Transformers Deluxe Dreadwing (2007)
- A small-sized toy from the movie line that transforms from a MiG-29 to robot. Features Automorph technology. With a real MiG-29 being 1737 centimeters long and this toy measuring 17 centimeters long, it would have a scale of 1/102 and he would stand about 50 feet tall in robot mode. Has missiles that fire from the afterburners (in vehicle mode) or from his "hands" (in robot mode).
- Also available in a black repaint as Overcast and in an orange "Tiger Meet" redeco as Fearswoop for the Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen toy line.
- Transformers 3D Battle Card Game Movie Dreadwing (2007)
- Dreadwing is among the characters which appeared in the 1st wave of Transformers 3D Battle Card Game by Wizards of the Coast. He is a redeco of movie Starscream.
Dreadwing is a main cast Decepticon who appears in season two, voiced by Tony Todd, who previously voiced the Fallen in "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen". He is the split-Spark twin brother of Skyquake.
Dreadwing, according to Optimus, was the captain of an army of Seekers, and is an expert in explosives. Like Skyquake, Dreadwing is intensely loyal to Megatron, though his loyalty to his twin is stronger. However, unlike his brother, Dreadwing is better at keeping his temper in check.
In addition to his calculating tactics, cool-minded leadership, and fierce loyalty, Dreadwing has outwardly shown a sense of integrity not normally characterized by the Decepticon agenda. During situations of dwindling odds, Dreadwing considers all possibilities within battle, and is wary of the potential consequences of hasty decisions. He will even fight alongside the Autobots if surviving the situation calls for it. In order to secure a favorable outcome or the welfare of his sovereign lord, the dreaded seeker will save face, or indeed the sparks of a few Autobots, if it means a clean victory and living to battle another day...
Dreadwing debuts in "Loose Cannons" where he was pursued to Earth by Wheeljack after he blew up Seaspray's ship with a proximity bomb. He scans Agent Fowler's jet which he uses to escape as Wheeljack accidentally blows up a gas station. Dreadwing meets up with Megatron to proclaim his loyalty and to ask what happened to his brother Skyquake. Megatron tells of Skyquake's termination by the Autobots while Starscream was in charge. Dreadwing vows to make the Autobots pay for what happened to Skyquake, but is told to stand down by Megatron, who will be the one to decide when the Autobots will be destroyed. Dreadwing disobeys him by secretly contacting Wheeljack and meeting up with him in a forest/canyon to do battle. Even though Wheeljack brings Bulkhead, both are defeated by a well-placed bomb that knocks both out. Dreadwing then spirits Bulkhead to a docking area where he rigs him with a bomb. As Optimus Prime and Wheeljack come to save Bulkhead, Dreadwing is contacted by an angry Megatron. Despite Megatron's warnings that Optimus is not easily disposed of, Dreadwing asks for a chance to avenge his brother, which Megatron allows. Optimus tries to reason with him, but Dreadwing ignores his pleas and engages in battle with him. Optimus Prime traps Dreadwing with a shipping crane and in a tense standoff with Wheeljack, Optimus, and the still rigged Bulkhead, Dreadwing agrees to disable the bomb. Dreadwing escapes afterwards by setting off bombs he had set up before to distract the Autobots. He returns to the Nemesis and swears his absolute loyalty to Megatron much to the latter's delight. Dreadwing is not happy about Starscream's move.
Dreadwing later appears in "Crossfire", where Megatron offers him a chance to replace Airachnid as his first lieutenant. Dreadwing brings Breakdown with him on a covert mission to kill Airachnid, but the plan falls apart when Airachnid's taunting causes Breakdown to attack her without Dreadwing's order. Dreadwing then attacks Airachnid and manages to break off one of her legs, forcing her to retreat, but not before being webbed to a tree. Breakdown pursues her despite Dreadwing's orders to first release him. This leads to the death of Breakdown. Dreadwing was unable to recover his remains, much to the displeasure of Megatron. When Airachnid challenges Megatron to find and face her, Dreadwing offers to accompany him, but Megatron refuses the help. Dreadwing goes anyway with a legion of vehicon drones just as Optimus Prime has Megatron at gun point. Dreadwing offers to spare the Autobots' lives if he lets Megatron go, giving his word. When Megatron is released however, he orders the Decepticons to attack the Autobots himself before he and Dreadwing escape. During the flight back to the Nemesis, Megatron states that Dreadwing will make a fine first lieutenant. He gives the Autobots the Forge of Solus Prime, then takes care of Starscream, once and for all.
In "Flying Mind", Dreadwing attends to damage sustained to the Nemesis from Bulkheads attack on the power core but proves futile. He later witnesses Megatron infusing the ships core with Dark Energon and the ships fight with the Autobots. However the ship then came to live and put all of the Decepticons (Dreadwing included) into stasis.
In "Triangulation", Dreadwing goes to Antarctica to hunt for one of the Iacon relics competing against Optimus Prime as well as Starscream (who mistook Dreadwing for Skyquake). When the relic is found at a nearby base in Antarctica, Dreadwing fights Optimus Prime as Starscream breaks the relic out of the ice and places the object on him which forms armor around Starscream which Optimus Prime identifies as the Apex Armor. Dreadwing attacks Starscream where no attacks from Dreadwing penetrates the Apex Armor. Optimus Prime and Dreadwing had to temporarily work together in order to fight Starscream. With Dreadwing drawing Starscream's attention, Optimus Prime attacks Starscream as Dreadwing tries to use one of his bombs on Starscream which doesn't work. Dreadwing tries to get Optimus Prime to fall back which works as Dreadwing sets off some bombs which sends Starscream through the hole in the ice. Dreadwing then prepares to fight Optimus Prime who tries to get Dreadwing to turn against the Decepticons. Dreadwing states that he will terminate Optimus Prime the next time they meet and leaves.
Dreadwing makes a brief reappearance in "Triage" where Megatron gives praise for Soundwave for retrieving the Resonance Blaster, the Decepticon leader shows his disappointment in Dreadwing's failure.
Dreadwing appears in "Alpha; Omega", volunteering to lead an assault on the Autobots, but Megatron talks him out of it, explaining Optimus's new power with the Star Saber. But Megatron takes Dreadwing with him to Cybertron, to the tomb of an unknown Prime, who Megatron takes the arm from and attaches it to his body.
In "Patch", Dreadwing was present with Megatron when Starscream proposes a truce. When Knock Out tries to disconnect the cords to Megatron's psychic patch, Dreadwing comes in and asks if everything is all right. Knock Out tells Dreadwing that he was just checking to see if the cords are connected right. Dreadwing also views the clips from the psychic patch about the day when Skyquake had perished and his Terrorcon form being trapped in the Shadowzone. In anguish and frustration having viewed his twin brother Skyquake's fate, along with Megatron's telling Starscream to keep that to himself, Dreadwing travels to the deck of the Nemesis and screams into the night rain.
In "Regeneration", Dreadwing (feeling that the cause of the Decepticons is now in disgrace) secretly arranges for a meeting with the Autobots alone. When the Autobots arrive, Dreadwing gives them the Forge of Solus Prime and pleads that they use it wisely. Dreadwing also tells the Autobots that Omega Keys are under heavy guard on the Nemesis thanks to Starscream, who is now back in his ranks with the Decepticons. Optimus Prime then tries to get Dreadwing to join the Autobots, but Dreadwing respectfully refuses, stating that siding with Autobots is not the same as deserting the Decepticons. After returning to the Nemesis, Dreadwing is confronted by Megatron, who voices his concern about Dreadwing finding out about what happened to Skyquake, but gives him some comfort to get it over with, stating of the possibility that the Decepticions will restore and rule Cybertron if they are only united by cause and cooperation (including Dreadwing's). After Knock Out completes the transformation cog transplant on Starscream, Dreadwing arrives vowing that Starscream won't "spread his wings again." Realizing that something has gotten into Dreadwing's mind, Starscream assured to him that Skyquake met his demise with honor, but Dreadwing stated to Starscream that he disgraced Skyquake by reviving him as a Terrorcon. Starscream then offers to make amends for his actions, but Dreadwing insists that taking Starscream's spark will be the only retribution. However, Megatron breaks up the fight ordering Dreadwing to stand down. Dreadwing refuses to oblige to Megatron's order and raises his sword in an attempt to kill Starscream, but Megatron kills Dreadwing using Dreadwing's own gun. Afterwards, Megatron tells Starscream not to make him regret on who he chose to spare.
In the season three premiere, "Darkmount, NV", the Forge of Solus Prime was found in the Autobot base after it was destroyed. This made Megatron realize that Dreadwing had brought it to the Autobots and betrayed Megatron before he was killed. Later, in the season 3 finale episode "Deadlock", Bumblebee unknowingly avenged Dreadwing's death by killing Megatron.
- Prime Cyberverse Commander Dreadwing (October 12, 2012)
- A redeco of Commander Dreadwing. With a new pair of weapons.
- Prime Powerizer Voyager Class Dreadwing (October 12, 2012)
- A redeco of RID Voyager Dreadwing. With a new weapon.
- Prime: Beast Hunters Deluxe Class Dreadwing w/ Dread Assault Cannon (2013)
- Bellemo, Mark (2007). Transformers Identification and Price Guide. Krause Publications. pp. 199–200. ISBN 978-0-89689-445-7.
- "Transformers" (US) #42 (July 1988)
- Google patents
- TFW2005.com - Tokyo Toy Show Exclusives Revealed: Elite Guard Prowl and Dreadwing/Smokescreen
- Dreadwing (2004) - Decepticon - www.tfu.info
- "The Classicverse Mini-Cons". Transformers Collectors Club magazine (Fun Publications): p. 6. October–November 2007.
- Greg Sepelak and S. Trent Troop (2007). The New World. Fun Publications.
- Tomart's Action Figure Digest #159