The Darksyde (sometimes Darkside) is the name of the Predacon vessel that Megatron's troops "borrowed" to get to Earth after he stole the Golden Disk. Terrorsaur named her, though Waspinator wanted to call her the "Buzzerbot". Megatron didn't care either way. After it crashed on prehistoric Earth, the Predacon Inferno preferred to call the ship "the Colony", though just about everyone else referred to it as the Predacon Base.
- Japanese name: Terror Crusher / Terra Crusher (テラクラッシャー, see Trivia)
Exiting Transwarp, the Darksyde was immediately fired upon by the pursuing Maximal science vessel Axalon, though the better armed Predacon ship quickly took the upper hand. Despite the urging of his first officer to destroy the Axalon when the Maximal's shields failed, Megatron arrogantly decided to merely toy with his opponents by slowing down the ship enough for the Axalon to catch up, then unleashing a broadside from the Darksyde's side guns, severely damaging the Maximal ship.
However, Megatron would not have long to gloat, as several well-aimed plasma cannon shots from the Axalon strafed the hull of the Darksyde, crippling the ship and shattering off its (from top) left wing as it plummeted down to the planet's surface along with the Axalon.
The crashed Darksyde became the Predacon base, their center of operations on Earth. The ship apparently crashed in a volcanically-active area, as the impact created lava-filled concentric cracks around it, and an upwelling of lava in the main control center. While it's arguably dangerous to have a control room where you can't walk across the floor without melting, it does look seriously badass.
The base contained a main control and monitoring center with a holographic projector; given the absence of a proper floor, hover platforms were commonly used by the Predacons to get around much of the base. The base also included CR tanks capable of restoring severely damaged Predacons (or Maximals) to full functionality; a private suite used by Megatron, including a CR tank/hot tub; a lab area used by Tarantulas; holding cages suspended over the lava pits (keyed to Megatron's voice command); and a secure storage area which held the Predacons' remaining Transwarp cells. The grounds surrounding the base were laced with automatic weapons, programmed to scan for and target Maximal energy signatures.
In addition to day-to-day Predacon operations, the base was the scene of several battles. The first involved a messy and destructive hunt for Cheetor, who accidentally teleported into the control room.. Another resulted from Megatron's attempt to reprogram Rhinox into a Predacon; the rogue Maximal very nearly brought Megatron down from power by taking out first his troops, then his kneecaps. Rhinox's comrades stormed the base to recover him, however. The Maximals forced their way into the base a third time when Optimus Primal was infected with a rage-inducing virus; the berserk Maximal leader stormed through the Predacon base, taking out troops one after the next, until his comrades arrived to heal and retrieve him.
The Maximals also managed to infiltrate the base more covertly on numerous occasions. When the Predacons managed to hack into Maximal communications, Rattrap went undercover as a turncoat. He escaped from one of the suspended prison cages and searched through the Predacon base till he found a Maximal codebreaker chip installed in one of its communication panels.Rattrap entered on another occasion to install a spy camera and cable; when the Predacons discovered it, they faked their own destruction, drawing the Maximals into the abandoned base to salvage space drive parts. Optimus Primal noted that even abandoned, a Predacon ship was still a dangerous place. Using Rattrap and Airazor as a distraction, Tigatron slipped into the base to search for information about the latest alien site to have revealed itself (though this turned out to have been exactly what Megatron wanted all along.)
At least once, the base's lava pits proved to be a distinct liability. When the planet was hit by a quantum surge in the wake of the Planet Buster's destruction, Terrorsaur and Scorponok lost control of their hover platforms, collided, and tumbled off. The two sank into the lava and were never seen again.
Tarantulas proved able to cut power to the base at will; he did so once with a magna pulse, and again through unknown means when Ravage and the Maximals arrived to take Megatron prisoner. The base took considerable damage while under assault from Ravage's Transwarp cruiser.
After the destruction of the Maximal base, Megatron's troops stole the Sentinel shield module from the Maximals, and installed it in the Predacon base, providing it with a defensive energy shield.
- (Note: In the Japanese dub, the Darksyde's computer AI was named Navico.)
The original crew of the Darksyde included:
- Megatron - Captain/Commander
- Dinobot - First Officer/Second-in-command
- Scorponok - Chief Engineer, later second-in-command after Dinobot turned on Megatron.
- Tarantulas - Weapons/Special Ops. Secretly a spy for the Tripredacus Council.
- Terrorsaur - Fighter
- Waspinator - Pilot
Beast Wars 10th Anniversary
- Megatron (2006)
- A small toy of the Darksyde was included with the Beast Wars Tenth Anniversary version of Megatron. The packaging calls it the
PreadconPredacon ship, possibly due to trademark issues. (A typo on the packaging was corrected by a sticker.)
- The name of the Predacon ship comes from fandom interpretation of Terrorsaur's line from the Beast Wars episode "Equal Measures," which welcomes Cheetor "to the dark side," upon Cheetor's arrival within the Predacon ship. Since there wasn't an established name for the ship at the time, some fans thought that Terrorsaur may have been speaking more than metaphorically. The name was used in the Transformers Beast Wars: Transmetals video game, making the name official, and again years later in the booklet inside Kid Rhino's Beast Wars season 1 DVD set. In the BotCon 2006 exclusive toy box set and accompanying story, "Darksyde" was spelled with a "y" to avoid possible trademark problems. Despite the glee with which the name is joyfully batted around in the fandom, the show itself never specifically called it anything other than "the Predacon base" or "Predacon ship".
- In the Japanese dub of Beast Wars, the Predacon ship was given an official name long before "Darksyde" was canonized in the West. Unfortunately, the Japanese name of the ship is rendered so nebulous by alternately acceptable transliterations that it's impossible to tell what they were actually going for in English. The katakana for the ship's name - テラクラッシャー te-ra-ku-ra-sshā - can reasonably be read as "Terra Crasher", "Terror Crasher", "Terror Crusher" or "Terra Crusher". Given the sense of humor forcefully injected into the Japanese dub of Beast Wars, it's possible they wanted "Terra Crasher" because the ship literally smacks into the Earth. Another decent possibility could be "Terror Crusher" (since Predacons use "Terrorize" as Activation codes) or "Terra Crusher" ("Terra" referring to the latin word for earth, which makes the ship's name the "Earthcrusher").