The Golden One is a powerful sorcerer who rules the magical world of Menonia in another dimension. He draws his power from sunlight, so he becomes progressively debilitated when cut off from solar radiation. He can survive extremely prolonged deprivation, however, and may very well be immortal. His powers include shape-shifting into a dragon form and opening dimensional portals. He must have enough energy to voice his spells at a given volume, or else they will not work.
The Transformers cartoon
The Golden One ruled the land of Menonia in peace until the Quintessons banished the criminal Mara-Al-Utha to his world for practicing sorcery. The Golden One initially tried to help Mara-Al-Utha adjust to living on another world and to teach him good ways to use his magic. However, the Quintesson's actions and attitude made this job difficult. After several incidents of Mara-Al-Utha causing his experiments to explode, an angry Golden One declared the Quintesson should go live in a cave. However, when they arrived at the cave and the Golden One indicated Mara-Al-Utha should enter, the Quintesson instead fired a beam from of one of his tentacles, causing the Golden One to fall into the cave and a huge rock to seal off the cave's entrance. There the Golden One remained for the next 12 million years, while Mara-Al-Utha took control of Menonia as "The Red Wizard".
In 2006, Daniel Witwicky and the Dinobot Grimlock stumbled upon the room on Cybertron containing the transport device which the Quintessons had used to send Mara-Al-Utha and other Quintesson criminals to other worlds. Grimlock accidentally activated the device, transporting himself and Daniel to Menonia. Initially deceived by Mara-Al-Utha, who had disguised himself as the Golden One's favorite student, Daniel was imprisoned with the real student, whom he freed. Once they escaped, the elderly pupil led Daniel to the Golden One's prison cave. By this time, several others had tracked Grimlock and Daniel to Menonia, including his mother, Carly, the Autobot Blaster and his cassettes Ramhorn and Steeljaw. Steeljaw's tracking nose led them to Daniel, and Ramhorn's power shattered the boulder, freeing the Golden One, who regained some of his energy upon contact with sunlight.
Advised by his pupil of the Red Wizard's actions, the Golden One transformed himself into a dragon, flew to the castle, and struck the Red Wizard with mystic bolts that reduced his magic, revealing his true Quintesson form. However, the Golden One was still vulnerable, and Mara-Al-Utha was easily able to change him back to human form with magic. The Golden One told his allies he was too weak to make his counterspells heard, so Blaster converted to his radio-cassette deck mode, complete with a microphone for the Golden One to use. With his voice thus amplified, the Golden One was able to cast a spell that sent Mara-Al-Utha to yet another world. The portal from Cybertron then opened again, and the Golden One helped Daniel, Carly and the Autobots to return through it.