Depth Charge was once an Imperial Peace Marshal, whose territory was completely destroyed, and every robot under his protection slaughtered, by the malicious entity known as Protoform X. Since that fateful day, Depth Charge has lived for no other purpose than to enact justice (or vengeance) on X. His single-mindedness makes him a relentless hunter, stopping at nothing to prevent X from taking any more lives. His quest has more than taken its toll on Depth Charge, though — whatever he was before, he is now a joyless, hollow shell of a being. While he sometimes expresses sympathy for other beings and lends aid to his fellow Maximals, Depth Charge has clearly been consumed by his mission, and the destruction of Protoform X is now more important to him than the original reasons behind his quest.
He is also one of the more SERIOUS characters.
- Brazilian name: Profundeza
- French name (Canada): Torpille
- Chinese name (Taiwan): Mó-gǔei Yǘ (魔鬼魚, "Devil Fish")
- Italian name: Mantas (toyline), Abysses (cartoon)
- Polish name: Głębinobot ("Abyssalbot")
- Spanish name: Manta Raya
Depth Charge was a Peace Marshal stationed on Colony Omicron when Protoform X broke free and went on a rampage. As the colony's sole survivor, Depth Charge made hunting down "X" his only mission in life. Pursuing Protoform X to places throughout the Universe (including Starbase Rugby) Depth Charge successfully captured Protoform X, and turned him over to the Maximal Elders. The Elders decided that Protoform X should be placed in stasis aboard the Axalon and dumped on an uninhabited world.
Knowing that "Primal would screw it up", Depth Charge continued to monitor the Universe for any trace of Protoform X. The sensors on his Starhopper picked up traces of Protoform X just as he was pulled through a temporal anomaly; the strange radiation of the wormhole-like disturbance sucked in his ship and Transmetalized his superstructure. The resulting crash left him on prehistoric Earth with a Transmetal Manta Ray body, and put him right in the middle of the Beast Wars.
Depth Charge became a wild card for the Maximals. Although against the Predacons, and shocked by the presence of the Ark, Depth Charge initially refused to follow Primal's orders. They never knew if he could be counted on, as his pursuit of Protoform X, now known as Rampage always took precedent. His new body gave him the Cybershark (not the fellow Maximal) drone, which he used to track Rampage and later, inadvertently, Dinobot 2. His single-minded obsession usually ended up getting the Maximals in trouble. Once he outright refused to help the other Maximals in a mission to recover their Sentinel defense software, which resulted in its ultimate loss.
However, Depth Charge would comply with the Maximals from time to time. When Depth Charge was called forth to stop Megatron from launching the Nemesis he followed the order instantly, for even he knew how important it was to stop Megatron. Ironically it was Rampage who found Depth Charge on this mission and forced him into battle. They fought, their battle intensified by nearby Energon crystals throughout the terrain.
As Depth Charge attempted to shove an Energon spike into Rampage's spark, Rampage released Depth Charge's hands and laughed maniacally as he allowed his rival to destroy the both of them. His reasons for this are unknown. Some fans believe Rampage was using Depth Charge's own obsession with him to manipulate and corrupt him, with this scenario the ultimate test to see just how far the Maximal would go to claim "justice" over him. It may also be that Rampage simply decided he wished to be free of Megatron's control.
This incident was also the only time in the Beast Wars when a Maximal killed a Predacon (not for a lack of trying). And even though character deaths had occurred before in the show, this was also the first time when one Transformer slew another with his own hands (All prior Predacon deaths occurred through either an accident (Scorponok and Terrorsaur) or their own efforts backfiring on them (Tarantulas), while the slain Maximals were either killed in a trap (Optimus Primal, temporarily) or simply died of accumulated damage rather than anyone actually delivering a killing blow (Dinobot)).
IDW Beast Wars comics
When Optimus Primal was brought before Alpha Trion and Primus and told to select any Cybertronians past or present to form the foundations of a new army that would take the fight for the multiverse to Unicron himself, Depth Charge was chosen by Primal, along with Rhinox. Depth Charge was less than thrilled about being brought back to life, but that didn't stop him from saving Rattrap from a newly-corrupted Blackarachnia. Despite the sight of his old "friend", he still declined to participate, and left Rattrap unconscious only to run smack into the Piranacons.
- Depth Charge (Ultra Transmetal, 1998/1999)
- Japanese ID number: C-46
- Depth Charge transforms into a robotic manta ray, plus has a third "air skimmer" mode. The very end of his tail detaches to form a sword/harpoon. In all modes, his robot chest/manta mouth is a spring-loaded, gravity-fed disc launcher, with 7 disks (Power pizzas as Cheetor calls them). He comes with a "cybershark" drone-unit that has two spring-loaded missile launchers in its mouth. This drone can attach to Depth Charge's manta/skimmer modes, or be used as a hand-held weapon in robot mode.
- For the Takara Beast Wars Metals line, the "DEPTH CHARGE" tampograph changed to "CYBERTRON" and the faction sigil, as with all toys in the series.
- Depth Charge Vs. Inferno (Multi-pack, 1999)
- Japanese ID number: VS-46
- During Beast Wars Metals, Depth Charge was available both individually and in a double-pack with Metals Inferno. Both toys were identical to their individual releases.
- Depthcharge (Ultra, 2004)
- Depthcharge was redecoed for the Universe line, into a series of dark drab greens, maroons, and black, with paint-wash effects on his wings. The end result is actually kinda Star Warsian. The toy had several small changes made for safety reasons. On the main toy, the front small... manta-ray-mouth thingies were cast in a much more pliable plastic. The tail of his cybershark drone was also changed to pop off as a separate piece; this also allows it to spin, plus makes it easier for Depthcharge to hold it in robot mode. The discs were given a much thicker, rounder border as well, and he only has 5 disks instead of 7.
- In the jovial Japanese dub of Beast Wars, nearly all the characters were given bizarre quirks with the intention of inserting extra "comedy" elements. Depth Charge had a habit of singing "Ito Maki-maki", a Japanese folk song, while transforming. The words translate to "Wind the thread" (it's a fishing song, get it?).
- Depth Charge's severed head can be seen in the junkyard in the Spark of Darkness episode of Beast Machines, precisely 5 minutes and 3 seconds into the episode.
- Depth Charge is one of the few characters in Beast Wars cartoon to go by his original Cybertronian name rather than change it to suit his new alternate mode.
- Depth Charge is one of the two Transmetal characters in the third season to have an actual gun, the other being his nemesis Rampage. Most other transmetal characters have some kind of improvised weapon, such as Cheetor's hands coming together to fire lasers and Megatron's tail flail being used like a laser cannon.