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Long before the civil war, ancient Transformers began experimenting with Energon in an attempt to increase its yield and power. These experiments eventually produced results, creating an altered type far more powerful then normal Energon. This Energon, however, was quickly found to be a mistake. The new Energon was quickly shown to corrupt anything it touched, including Transformers, spreading like an infection that overwhelmed and altered the victim. Furthermore it was simply too powerful to be controlled by anyone. Because of this, it was called "Dark Energon". Its creation was halted and forbidden, with whatever remaining Dark Energon being destroyed. The files regarding its existence and how to create it were classified top secret and hidden. The last remaining Dark Energon and facility capable of manufacturing it were locked away onboard an orbiting space station under heavy security, commanded for over a thousand years by Starscream, who was joined at some point with assistance from Jetfire, Thundercracker, and Skywarp. Rumors and legends spread about the Dark Energon, but were widely believed to be nothing more.
During the events of the great war, Dark Energon had remained hidden and sealed away for most of the conflict. However as the war neared its end, Megatron, having learned of the Dark Energon, sought it and initiated a full scale assault on the space station where it was being kept. He and a small team of survivors from his flagship infiltrated the base and encountered Sky-Commander Starscream. After all the defenses were beaten, Starscream attempted to destroy what remained of the Dark Energon in a last attempt to keep Megatron from getting it, but only partially succeeded. What remained of it was directly exposed to Megatron who, with his evil spark and lust for power, was able to control it, gaining enormous power.
Hoping to gain such power, Starscream switched sides and became a Decepticon. With his knowledge of its creation process, Megatron began mass-producing the substance, using it in his war with the Autobots.
Controlling the Dark Energon, Megatron grew in power as its infection grew. To this extent, he came up with a plan to reach the core of Cybertron and infect the very core of their homeworld. In the battles he fought to obtain the Omega Key, he used those powers to open doors or destroy Anti-Aircraft Cannons. As he sought the key to the planet's core, Megatron battled Omega Supreme, and through the use of Dark Energon, corrupted his systems and defeated him, allowing him access to the core of their world.
Following this, Optimus Prime embarked on a mission to reach the planet's core and rid Cybertron of the infection. As he and his own team ventured to the core, they witnessed the Dark Energon's corruption first hand. When they finally did reach the core Cybertron's sentient mind told them they were too late, as the planet's very Spark had been corrupted; however it also told of a way to save the planet. If the core were to shut down, the planet would be able to heal and purge itself of the infection. The process would take millions of years, during which the planet would be uninhabitable. Being the only way to save their homeworld, Optimus Prime reluctantly agreed. To make sure that hope remained, and that the Autobots always had a piece of their homeworld, Cybertron's core gifted to Optimus a piece of what remained of it's pure spark, shaped like the Matrix of Leadership, and the Autobots began evacuating the planet.
The Dark Energon that infected the planet would not be removed until millions of years later, during which the Transformers had to abandon their homeworld, migrating all over space, making Dark Energon partially responsible for all of the events that happened in the years after the civil war.
Dark energon has a number of effects and side effects:
- It can be used as a very strong power source, just like regular Energon.
- It can be used to force open heavily locked doors and override other electronic devices.
- Any device that uses Dark Energon will begin to grow dark, spike-shaped crystals from it, referred to as "corruption". They will continue to grow with continued use and/or exposure to Dark Energon, reaching to other devices which it will corrupt upon contact. These spikes are also hazardous and will harm anyone who touches them. Direct exposure to Dark Energon by a Transformer will overwhelm and destroy them. Megatron, however, was able to control it, presumably due to his evil spark and will. As said by Starscream, any Transformer exposed to it would be destroyed instantly. Megatron proved however, that if a Transformer is exposed to dark energon by another Transformer who is able to control it, it will keep them from being destroyed while yielding all the power.
- Dark Energon crystals are also capable of spawning Energon Spiders. However, it has not been revealed at this time whether they come from the crystals directly or if Trypticon was able to manipulate the growth of the Dark Energon he released in some way.
- Dark Energon can revive dead Cybertronians. Megatron used this ability in Transformers: Prime to revive an army of dead Cybertronians on Earth, which Optimus and Ratchet promptly battled and defeated, and then used it to revive all the dead on Cybertron and bring them through the space bridge, which was destroyed when he touched the first one that came through.
War for Cybertron game
The Dark Energon plays a major role in the plot of the game; it is an engineered variant of normal Energon which is sought by Megatron and later used by him as a means of war. It is far more powerful than average Energon, possibly enough to be considered a type of Super Energon. As opposed to regular Energon in the game which takes the form of a glowing blue liquid, Dark Energon takes the form of dark purple, pulsating crystal spikes.
In a conversation between Megatron & Starscream, it is revealed that Dark Energon is the blood of Unicron and possesses properties of the Anti-Spark. It was used to revive Cliffjumper as a mindless zombie for lack of a better word and would spew from his body. After prolonged contact with Dark Energon's liquified form, it caused Arcee to nearly faint. Megatron stabs his spark chamber with a piece of Dark Energon in an attempt to gain its power. While examining a sample of the liquid removed from Arcee, Ratchet spills a bit of it on a robotic arm Bulkhead had broken earlier, causing the arm to become infected and come to life, not unlike the creature's from the Allspark in the movie-verse. (Ratchet, however, was distracted and did not witness this).
Later, when Megatron is searching for more Dark Energon, he receives a vision from Unicron himself that sends him to an active volcano. Dark Energon soon erupts from the volcano, sending purple flames and purple lightning in all directions.
Megatron later uses Dark Energon to restore his ship after it is immobilized by Bulkhead. Nemesis gains sentience. It sets out on its self-imposed mission of locating all the Iacon artifacts for an unspecified reason, though is later stopped when Jack, Miko, Raf, and Agent Fowler, the Autobots' human allies, groundbridge onto the ship and eventually expel the Dark Energon.As a result, the
After having the arm of a Prime implanted on him, Megatron is able to use the Forge of Solus Prime. He uses its power to transform a large crystal of Dark Energon into a blade which he names the Dark Star Saber.
While using Silas/Breakdown as a test subject in their Synthetic Energon experiments, Starscream and Knock Out used a drop of Dark Energon on him to give Megatron a means of controlling the aggressive recipients, only to turn Silas into a zombie creature capable of sucking Energon from other Transformers.
- Dark Energon resembles Phazon from Nintendo's Metroid series in that both of these substances can corrupt machinery and lifeforms, both can be used as a power source, and both are used by the antagonists.
- Although both are said to be created from Unicron, Dark Energon is not the same thing as Angolmois by far.
- The origin of Dark Energon differs in the two fictions that it appears in. In War for Cybertron, it is a form of synthetic energon that was created through tampering with regular energon. In the Prime cartoon, it is said to be created from Unicron.