"Ageing" Transformers

Discussion in 'Transformers Animated Discussion' started by thekryle, Mar 17, 2008.

  1. SMOG

    SMOG Vocabchampion ArgueTitan

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    Sure! Machines get old, break down, fall apart. Rechargeable batteries burn out. Electronics corrode and stop working. I think age should still mean something to TFs, even if they do live much longer than humans. I disagree with the idea that they should be considered immortal.

    It's already been canonized right from the early days of G1 that Ironhide and Kup are old, and in the case of Ironhide at least, it actually does hamper him somewhat. I imagine that eventually the spark could dim, the body give out, etc...

    zmog
     
  2. thekryle

    thekryle Well-Known Member

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    But then the whole "They're machines, they can repair themselves" theme comes in.
     
  3. TerraEsperZ

    TerraEsperZ Active Member

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    I prefer to think of Transformers age as being a mental state rather than a physical one, although it can impact the body. An older bot might be more hesitant to upgrade to the newest tech because he's too attached to his old body, or might not want to repair dents and defects because they have meaning to them.

    As for facial wrinkles, if I had to explain them, I'd say they aren't really wrinkles as such but rather they represent the age through the expression. I mean, you know how some human, even young one, can look really old just by their expression? Sometimes, regardless of age or actual facial defects, you can tell that someone is, deep inside, really young or old, or sick, or detached or anything else really. Ultra Magnus and Ratchet look old because they feel old and that shows on their faces. They've probably seen many horrors during the war that affected them deeply. The Decepticons however *like* fighting, destroying stuff and killing weaker beings; whatever they went through in the war was either great fun for them or at worst par for the course. They're all still young at heart (or spark), which is why they don't look old at all.

    That's how I'd explain it if I had to.
     
  4. Legless Pete

    Legless Pete Chairman Kaga

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    Alternatively, if their faces of made of a plastic or otherwise malleable substance, the wrinkles could be due to extended facial movements warping the material.
     
  5. SMOG

    SMOG Vocabchampion ArgueTitan

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    Yes, but only up to a point. Eventually the central network starts to decay, the spark casing is beyond repair, and the memory tubes are starting to lose their charges... or whatever. They can upgrade and repair and refit... but there's always a limit.

    Sometimes resources are limited. Ratchet may not be able to upgrade himself to a sleek supercharged new form any more than I could afford to have my body cloned at age 18 and have my brain transferred. Hell, I can't even afford a gym membership! Resources are limited, both on Cybertron AND Earth. ;) 

    On the other hand, some TFs have the chops to age gracefully. They don't fight it, 'cause they know they're just one cog in the great machine... and eventually they'll get the rest they earned, and their spark goes back to the Allspark and becomes one with the great beyond...

    So yeah, I can see how upgrade junkies could max themselves out, and last longer than other bots... but I'd still like to think that eventually, a TF just gets old and slow and buggy and tired... and finally shuts down.

    zmog
     
  6. Peaugh

    Peaugh Hi.

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    I think so. Hell, Bumblebee even referred to Ratchet as "having one foot in the scrapheap," so it's not impossible.
     
  7. Sol Fury

    Sol Fury The British Butcher Veteran

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    I think it's very possible. A spark could lose its charge, their systems could simply become outdated and incompatible with the latest parts, numerous other things that have been brought up.

    It's something that I am glad the series is at least touching upon. They're robots but not immortal by any means, it seems. Heck, an episode where Ratchet learns an old friend has passed away peacefully of old age would be very emotional, especially if the logical path of Ratchet facing his own mortality and deciding to retire from the team were followed. Maybe too heavy for the lighter direction of the series, but there's always fanfic.
     
  8. Dropshot

    Dropshot Transform your destiny

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    Sure Tfs can age, but just don't make them have any facial hair at all (Like alphatrion or scourge) it looks horrible in a robot and makes no sense.

    I think Tfs could die of ageing, but only if they don't receive proper manteinance for long period of time.

    If done correctly, they can live millions of years, and probably, they eventually get bored of their lives, so it could be that suicides are frequent or they choose to have their memories wiped and reborn in a new body.
     
  9. SMOG

    SMOG Vocabchampion ArgueTitan

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    I generally agree with you on this, though aesthetically, sometimes it looks okay. I like Cybertron Brakedown's spikey "beard" for example. I mean, as a purely decorative touch, it's not really any different than the various other decorative elements on TF heads and faces. How many G1 TFs had that little "soul patch" on their chins after all? :) 

    But I agree that it doesn't make sense that old TFs would just "grow" beards on their faces. That's particularly wacky.
    Like recycling their spark into a new body? So, sort of like reincarnation? I had a similar idea bouncing around in my personal fan-canon pertaining to TF biology.

    I would think that even if the spark itself is eternal (and that's not certain either), the other parts of a TF that make them who they are might break down... some parts just can't be replaced. Data is really just radiation in most cases... electrical charges, magnetic particles, light-sensitive dyes... so it's quite possible that their memories and cognitive abilities could dim over centuries, eventually leading to what would essentially be brain-death. All the maintenance in the world can't protect you from that.

    Ever had a hard-drive crash, and lose everything on your computer, gigs and gigs of data, writing, artwork, film projects etc..? I have. You might have the same processor as before, but your computer never will be the same again. What is lost, stays lost. (sob!)

    Naturally a high level of maintenance and frequent upgrades/replacements could allow a TF to live millenia... if not millions of years. But I would draw the line at functional immortality.

    It takes a lot to maintain a machine, same as it does a body... maybe plastic surgery and blood transfusions from a 100 virgins might keep me young until I'm 150... but it's not something I have access to. How many transformers have access to the kinds of parts, resources and high-end maintenance necessary to keep them feeling good for millions of years? Not many I'll bet... especially during a millenia-long war that wiped out their planet's resources and almost destroyed their race.

    Just because it's related (although not directly to Animated), I'll throw in my theory on the old "Who's older, Ironhide or Kup?" question in G1.

    Maybe Ironhide was always the senior officer, the crusty old war-horse, with Kup the up-and-coming officer. Then Ironhide goes into space with Optimus, gets lost on earth, and spends the next 4-40 million years in stasis at the bottom of a volcano. Meanwhile Kup spends the interceding eons fighting a desperate war on Cybertron. By the time that the Autobots on Earth wake up, Kup is now older than Ironhide, having put in more years of active service while Ironhide was taking his beauty nap.

    I always thought that would make a great fanfic... having Ironhide reunited with Kup, and finding him so much older, so changed from when he last saw him... driving home the weight of all the time the Ark crew spent lost.

    zmog