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- The Metal Hunter is an alien construct in the Beast Wars portion of the Generation One continuity family.
The "Metal Hunter" is a Vok weapon, sent to destroy the Transformers after the Planet Buster weapon failed. Partially if not entirely organic, it begins its life cycle as a flowering plant with sprawling tendrils; the plants spread by dispersing spinning seed pods that are carried by the wind. When properly signaled by a Vok transmission beam, the plant will expand, reshape itself, and turn into a giant metallic floating fortress shaped like the flower's seed pods. The Metal Hunter fortress is heavily armed, capable of short-range teleportation, and responds instantly when properly accessed through its control interface. It can be controlled by the Alien Disk.
Beast Wars cartoon
The base originated from an alien site located in what appeared to be a newly cut canyon. The site was apparently activated by Tarantulas just as the Maximals Airazor and Tigatron arrived. A strange plant at the site seized the two hapless Maximals and fired a massive energy beam, transporting them into space. Some time later, a replying beam of energy came from space, prompting the plant to morph and grow into the massive Metal Hunter base.
The alien device's first (and only) action was to unleash a massive energy wave at the Transformers surrounding it, knocking them all offline. Strangely, the effect was much less noticeable on Transmetals and Fuzors, both of whom were knocked out for several minutes, but unharmed. The remaining Transformers entered stasis lock as a result of the attack.
Recovering from the initial attack, Megatron infiltrated the base and was able to take control of it by inserting the Alien Disk into a specially designed niche. Control of the Metal Hunter appears to have been his first taste of godhood: he immediately projected an enormous relief of his own face onto the base's side. Speaking to his fallen troops in a booming voice, he lifted them (and Optimus Primal) off the ground before teleporting them inside the base, which then teleported away itself.
Megatron had his troops wire the base with transwarp cells; his intent was to take the weapon to Cybertron, where he would use its power to conquer the entire planet. Optimus Primal noted with great alarm that this might very well bring Cybertron's exact location to the attention of the aliens.
Though the Maximals were unable to locate the teleported Metal Hunter, Tarantulas -- betrayed by Megatron and temporarily siding with the Maximals -- was able to do so with ease once given access to their scanners. The Maximals attacked, providing a distraction for Rattrap and Tarantulas to infiltrate the base. Operating the base from a floating control chair, Megatron unleashed a barrage of firepower from the base at the attacking Maximals.
While Rattrap rescued Optimus Primal, Tarantulas managed to sabotage and destroy the alien base, mere seconds before its teleport sequence would have transported it to Cybertron.
Other Metal Hunter flowers were later shown to exist, though none of these behaved aggressively.
- The weapon was never actually called The Metal Hunter on-screen; the name comes from the episode scripts.
- It never actually hunted any metal, either.