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Transformers: Exodus is the title of the prequel novel for the Transformers Prime series. Published in 2010. It is meant to tie in with both that series and Transformers: War for Cybertron. Its full title is Exodus: The Official History of the War for Cybertron.

It was followed by two sequel novels, Transformers: Exiles and Transformers Retribution.

Exodus

  • Asskicking Equals Authority: This is how the gladiators, and eventually, Decepticons, run things.
  • Because Destiny Says So: Orion Pax becoming Optimus? Megatron starting a global war that would destroy Cybertron? Yeah, the Covenant of Primus predicted it all.
  • Black Best Friend: Jazz for Optimus. Though he technically isn't really black...
  • Combining Mecha: The Combiners, of course.
  • Composite Character: Some of the Autobots and Decepticons appear to combine elements of their various portrayals throughout the years. For example, Optimus is a data clerk much like Dreamwave's War Within Optimus, while his preference for using swords in battle harken back to movie Optimus.
  • Continuity Snarl: Though intended to be a backstory for War For Cybertron and link it to Transformers Prime, Exodus contradicts both in several areas, and it even contradicts itself on a number of things.
    • Alex Irvine explained at Bot Con 2010 that differences between the novel and game were not due to miscommunications but, rather, resulted from deliberate choices as both products moved in slightly different directions; Hasbro was aware of and approved all of them.
  • Curb Stomp Battle: In a very short amount of time, the Decepticons conquered 85% of Cybertron.
  • Cyber Cyclops: Shockwave, as per tradition. Though you wouldn't know that from the book alone, as there isn't any reference to it.
  • Feet of Clay: This is how Cybertron comes to view Sentinel Prime. Inverted in that at the end, after being imprisoned for long time, he returns to some of his Badass days in a battle with Megatron, where he fights well enough to earn a sincere salute from the Decepticon Leader.
  • Fight Clubbing: Megatron and a majority of the Decepticons were originally fighters in underground coliseums.
  • Flat Earth Atheist: Jazz doesn't believe in the Thirteen, seeing them only as abstract concepts to guide Cybertronians. To his credit, it's been a while since the Thirteen were around, and he most likely isn't alone in this belief.
  • Homeworld Evacuation: At the end of the novel, most of the Cybertronian race packs up and leaves the planet.
  • How the Mighty Have Fallen: Several characters in the opening chapters make reference to how Golden Age Cybertron was a mighty intergalactic state but that in the pre-War era it's a stagnant, isolated planet.
  • Info Dump: The first chapter is immensely guilty of this. It takes information that could definitely be introduced later and throws it all into the intro.
    • We don't need to know what the city looks like, when Orion Pax is sitting at a desk, and he's not even looking out a window--or even thinking about the city at all.
  • Merchandise-Driven
  • Mythology Gag: It's Transformers. Every chapter has at least three.
  • The Obi-Wan: Alpha Trion to Orion Pax/Optimus Prime.
  • Reality Ensues: Much of the war is subject to this. As lower class gladiators, the Decepticons are the stronger army but as the former government, the Autobots had access to better war equipment. As the war ground on, both sides' advantage cancelled out and victory comes down to one thing: There are more Decepticons than there are Autobots.
  • Shout-Out: An extremely obvious one to the Six Flags amusement parks, with Six Lasers Over Cybertron. Six Lasers itself is a nod to Beast Wars.
  • The Starscream: Three guesses who, and the first two don't count.
    • Debatably, and interestingly, Megatron seems to see Orion Pax/Optimus Prime this way.
    • Megatron also sees Shockwave this way, thinking that Shockwave can and will eventually turn on him.
  • Ultimate Universe: Like the rest of the Aligned Continuity, the book combines elements of past incarnations of Transformers and combines them into one universe. For example, Primus and Unicron exist, but Primus used the AllSpark to create the Cybertronians. At some point, the Quintessons invaded Cybertron, only to be fought back by Sentinel Prime.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: How Megatron starts.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: They can, there just isn't anything to go back to.

Exiles

  • Adaptation Species Change: Barring Thundertron, the Star Seekers were all Cybertronians in past continuities but are unrelated breeds of Mechanical Lifeforms here.
  • Adaptational Badass: Ransack was Comic Relief back in Transformers Cybertron but co-rules Velocitron here and leads its Decepticon faction.
  • Ambiguous Situation: Is Trypticon dead or has he succumbed to Shapeshifter Mode Lock? Even Transformers Prime doesn't offer a clear answer.
  • Combining Mecha: Nexus Prime was the first of them.
  • Composite Character: Wreck-Gar is a mix between his G1 and Animated selves.
  • Crapsack World: Velocitron. Its hypergiant sun is close to blowing, they don't have enough resources to build a spaceship, political tensions are at an all-time high, and the sun causes massive dust storms and EMP waves.
  • Fantastic Racism: Thundertron is dedicated to wiping out every Cybertronian, native to Cybertron or the colonies, in existence. His planet was destroyed during their colonization era.
  • The Generic Guy: Makeshift's Shapeshifter Default Form.
  • Landfill Beyond the Stars: Junkion.
  • I Fight for the Strongest Side: Axer.
  • Innocuously Important Episode: Subverted. Though it was supposed to be this, budgeting and time issues for Transformers Prime rendered most of Thundertron's backstory, along with all the World Building, pointless.
  • Landfill Beyond the Stars: As always, Junkion. It was the main dumping ground during the Golden Age.
  • Lost Colony: Velocitron and Junkion.
  • Portal Network: The Cybertronians used a series of Space Bridges to move around the galaxy as they colonized it. Deconstructed as this meant that the colonies didn't have any space ships to evacuate when the Rust Plague hit and the Space Bridges were disallowed given the risk of them spreading the disease.
  • Sins of Our Fathers: Most of the Autobots and Decepticons weren't even alive during the Age of Expansion, and the colonizers likely fell to plague and war, yet Thundertron's vendetta continues.
  • Space Pirates: The Star Seekers.
  • Superweapon Surprise:
    • The core of Junkion is the Requiem Blaster, the weapon of Megatronus Prime.
    • The weapon that Optimus has been tracking across the colonies isn't the Star Saber, it's the Cyber-Calliber.
  • Wretched Hive: Aside from being a dumping ground, Junkion's other major claim to fame was being a hiding place for low lives during the Golden Age.

Retribution

  • Adaptation Species Change: The Quintessons are now tiny organics in metal suits, much like the Daleks.
  • Adaptational Badass: Gnaw.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Rather than the Quintessons' loyal legion of Mooks, the Sharkticons are enslaved.
  • Abusive Precursors: Averted. The Quintessons didn't create the Cybertronians, Quintus Prime, one of the Thirteen, created the Quintessons.
  • Awesome but Impractical: The Requiem Blaster turns out to be this. As powerful as it is, it overheats very quickly. In a space battle with the Nemesis, the Tidal Wave is forced to eject the Blaster lest it destroy the ship. Happens when your superweapon is several billion years old.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Thundertron.
  • Can't Kill You - Still Need You: Axer tries to win back Megatron's good graces by revealing where the Ark is headed. It worked, but Axer clearly didn't give any thought as to what might happen to him after he'd told Megatron.
  • Combining Mecha: Superion.
  • Crapsaccharine World: Aquatron. It has bountiful reserves of energon and a variety of Transformers but it's controlled by the Quintessons.
  • Disappointed by the Motive: Megatron is not very impressed that Thundertron's hatred for Cybertron is motivated by the collapse of the Cybertronian Empire. The Empire fell because the Rust Plague was killing off Cybertronians by the planets.
  • Enemy Mine: As per tradition, the emergence of the Quintessons causes the Autobots and Decepticons to team up.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Megatron may believe that Evil Is Hammy but Thundertron takes it to a level that even the Emperor of Destruction finds overkill.
  • Evil Knockoff: The Sharkticon Matrix of Leadership.
  • Evil Versus Evil:
    • The Decepticons vs. the Star Seekers.
    • They later join the Autobots against the Quintessons.
  • Eviler Than Thou: The Quintessons to the Decepticons who almost become Big Bad Wannabes.
  • Feeling Oppressed by Their Existence: The Quintessons are still nursing a grudge over losing Cybertron.
  • Humans Through Alien Eyes: Xeros has a discussion with the Autobots regarding the few organic species of the galaxy in a manner much like this.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Shockwave says that Alpha Trion is pulling more strings than Optimus even knows exists.
  • Mechanical Lifeforms: According to Xeros, most of the galaxy is made of these.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • The Quintessons are nothing but this.
    • Rodimus uses a bow.
    • Alpha Trion can be used as a substitute Key to Vector Sigma.
  • Reality Ensues: The Star Seekers get their servos on an ancient superweapon that predates most planets. For all its power, they discover that such ancient technology has extremely poor heat dissipation and can only manage a few shots at a time. They also discover that the most powerful gun in the universe actually eats up a lot of energon to power its devastating shots. All they manage is, essentially, a flash grenade before they have to detach it.
  • Save the Villain: Optimus saves Megatron's life, even as it's pointed out he has no good reason to do so, and the Ark tows the Nemesis off Aquatron.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Space Is Noisy: So much so that Megatron requests that Thundertron stop screaming so loudly.
  • Villains Want Mercy: The Quintessons. They don't get it.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: It's never outright said what happened to Quintus Prime but everyone is quite sure that the Quintessons backstabbed him at the first opportunity.
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