How Would You Handle Trans-scanning?

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by Shady boi, Jul 14, 2021.

  1. Novaburnhilde

    Novaburnhilde シン・ブリュンヒルド

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    I kinda like the idea of alt-modes and weapons being part of a characters 'load out' when going on a mission. Taking into account things like terrain, what will fit in most / look out of place. Sometimes I imagine they'll have to get creative since I doubt smaller bots can just adopt alt-modes that are twice their size, like Optimus could pick from a variety of trucks and big rigs but he couldn't just adopt a muscle car form since... well, an oversized muscle car wouldn't exactly be a good disguise, would it?

    Colors on the other hand, I feel Cybes should be able to change color freely, as well as being able to hide their badges since I figure over time humans and other species would probably catch onto what those symbols mean.
     
  2. Applejacktimus

    Applejacktimus has been found dead in Miami

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    Makes me wonder if we could justify adaptive chameleon paint jobs with something semi-plausible like LCD-tiled plating.
     
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  3. Novaburnhilde

    Novaburnhilde シン・ブリュンヒルド

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    It's not something that comes up in the shows but I figure if your whole deal is to be in disguise it'd make sense to at least change color from time to time because otherwise people will start to notice the red and blue truck or the yellow Volkswagen. Similarly with faction symbols the Decepticons would for sure notice it and humans would begin to put the pieces together before long.

    Perhaps an interesting plot element could involve human supporters or the military putting Autobot sigils on vehicles and using them to create ambushes or a distraction.
     
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  4. Applejacktimus

    Applejacktimus has been found dead in Miami

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    And let's not forget the repaint potential. RID15 certainly didn't.
     
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  5. sikkusushotto

    sikkusushotto Well-Known Member

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    It has to be difficult, it has to be expensive, it has to require very special equipment or a very special individual or a very special location. There have to be trade-offs and consequences.

    Otherwise, there would have to be an in-universe explanation as to:
    1 - why small bots like Huffer, Cliffjumper, Bumblebee, Rattrap and so on exist
    2 - why more "useless" alt-modes exist
    3 - why everyone isn't a triple or quadruple changer or why everyone doesn't at least have a flight mode
    4 - why it doesn't happen far more often, why not switch to more military or utility vehicles before a fight or have someone bring a collection of vehicles to scan mid-fight

    I would stick with what G1/BW/BM established. Reformatting/rebuild on Cybertron is possible. Certain ships leaving Cybertron carry reformatting capability. Certain space and ground stations have that capability. Contact with the literal Matrix/Oracle/Vector Sigma or a chosen representative can also work.

    Once done and scanned, it must be very difficult and very dangerous to undo or change. Once organics come into play things get even more complicated.
     
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  6. Magnum Dongus

    Magnum Dongus Wishing for a reboot

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    I wouldn’t. Trans-scanning as is is way too easy and gives a character’s alt mode no real weight.
     
  7. CannonBlaster

    CannonBlaster Well-Known Member

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    Keep it like in G1. Maybe adding the ability for Transformers to scan on their own but still needing a computer to actually change their alt mode. Built-in scanners are too convenient
     
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  8. Murasame

    Murasame

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    Windows shouldn't be smashed either by an ordinary crash with a truck. The windows are the same cybertronian metal, just transparent. You wouldn't be able to slice their tires either, as they are not rubber, just metal that looks like the rubber of a tire. If you touched it, you would notice something is off.
     
  9. Rodimus Prime

    Rodimus Prime Sola Gratia, Sola Fide TFW2005 Supporter

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    I have always considered the faction symbols in alt modes added for the sake of the viewers, and not cannon.
     
  10. Honorbound

    Honorbound Bayverse Optimus was in the right.

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    I'd keep trans-scanning as an innate ability, but with several limitations:

    1) it requires a lot of energy
    2) it stresses the protomatter that comprises the Transformer's physical form (this along with 1) limits how often a Transformer can trans-scan a new alt mode; no rapid switching of vehicular forms here)
    3) a Transformer's morphcore - the part that stores the design data for both the robot mode and alternate mode - can only store one alt mode at a time. Multichangers are an exception, but the vast majority of them only have a third alt mode, with six being the hard limit. Also, the more alt modes a multichanger stores, the less distinct those alt modes become. For example. my take on Blitzwing couldn't have both a replica Earth jet and Earth tank mode - he could have one replica mode and one Cybertronic mode that looks like it was made out of the other mode. In Blitzwing's case, he'd have an Earth jet mode and a Cybertronic hover tank mode. Sixshot, the current record-holder for number of total modes (five, six including his robot mode), has a bunch of alt modes that look extremely similar to each other.
    4) any time a Transformer scans a new mode, the design template overwrites their old alt mode.
    5) mass-shifting isn't really a thing - Transformers can compress or expand their protomatter to get close to the vehicle's actual size, but doing so costs more energy, stresses the protomatter, and is uncomfortable as hell. If they're trying to mimic the size of something that's too small, it's like trying to squeeze into a way-too-tight pair of pants. If a bot the size of Bumblebee were to scan an F-22, the more likely result would be a Camaro-sized F-22. Tapedeck and Walther alt modes are off the table.
    6) a Transformer can't perfectly replicate a non-Cybertronian alt mode down to the last nut or bolt - they can get most of the details, including the passenger compartment, but getting every engine part right is nigh-impossible, since that's where the Transformer's non-convertible organs (spark crystal/spark chamber, morph core, energon battery, energon/materials digestive system, other stuff that I can't think of right now) go.
    7) Trans-scanning using a Transformer's native capabilities only works on similarly-shaped alt modes, i.e. going from a Cybertronian car to an Earth car. Going from a car to a jet requires invasive surgery. I still haven't figured out a reason as to why all Transformers don't convert into jets, but that problem exists regardless of the method of alt mode acquisition.
     
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