In the wake of Unicron's defeat, the battered Decepticons struggle to survive, and the Autobots enjoy a period of peace and celebration. But peace never lasts...
Japanese title: "The New War"
It is the year 2005. Autobots have reclaimed Cybertron while the Decepticons, now squabbling with each other for energon, retreated to the planet Chaar. Cyclonus realizes that to return the Decepticons to fighting form, they need drastic measures.
Somewhere else, the first Galactic Olympics are being held. Blurr is griping about being stuck in a mission with Wheelie when he wants to join the events. But Perceptor wants them to go to Autobot City on Earth, to deliver the new Transformation Cog for Metroplex, as his old one was damaged during the battle the year before.
Meanwhile, the Galactic Olympics are being sabotaged. In the middle of the confusion, Spike, Kup and Ultra Magnus are kidnapped. The Autobot leader suspects Decepticon shenanigans. Arcee and Springer follow the saboteur’s spaceship escaping the now supposed-to-be quarantined planet.
Cyclonus sneaks into Unicron’s memory banks to watch how Rodimus Prime shoves Galvatron into space. He then does some fast calculations and comes up with Galvatron being on the planet Thrull. There they see their leader soaking in the hot lava pools.
On Earth, Blaster and Outback goes to Federated Republic of Carbombya to investigate EDC reports of Decepticons in that country. Outback, equipped with a “Decepticon detector”, then flushes out Dirge and Ramjet. The two Autobots get the coordinates of Chaar from them...which they report to Rodimus Prime who wants to go there to investigate.
Arcee and Springer, meanwhile, commandeer the Skuxxoid's (that alien mercenary guy) bigger but uglier spaceship. The alien guy escapes and then calls his benefactor to confirm that the Autobots indeed suspect the Deceptions to be behind the disruption. The tentacled, egg-shaped benefactor listens to the report and then tunes out as he sees their prisoners, Spike, Kup and Ultra Magnus, being led by a Sharkticon.
Cyclonus, Scourge and the Sweeps return to Chaar, where the rest of the Decepticons are convinced that the solution to their problems is to have a strong leader again. They cheer when they hear that Galvatron lives, and are desperate enough that they give their remaining scraps of energon for reviving him. Rodimus Prime and Grimlock are spying nearby. Rodimus almost pities them, while Grimlock finds it funny (giving a rather possessed-sounding chuckle). Rodimus realizes that the Decepticons are too down on their luck to be the ones responsible for the kidnappings. Their cover suddenly gets blown and the Decepticons attack.
Original airdate: September 1,1986
Production number: 700-86
Written by: Flint Dille
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"Resist me, and be destroyed!"
- — Menasor, threatening to kill people.
Cyclonus: "Once Decepticons nearly held the quadrant through terror. Now we scrap like slarrgs over a few energon cubes. Is this how you honour the memory of Galvatron?! Is this the fate of the mighty Decepticon Empire?!"
Astrotrain: “In the days of Megatron, it was not like this.”
Cyclonus: “You mean Galvatron.”
Cyclonus and the Sweeps: “Hail Galvatron! Hail Galvatron! Hail Galvatron!”
Astrotrain (Muttering to Menasor): “Well, they were the same guy.”
- — The Decepticons remember the good old days.
"Autobots, you walk the thin line between glory and despair. Soon, you shall cross it."
- — A Quintesson.
“This is going to be a tough one.”
“I can't see the attackers.”
"That's what makes it tough."
- — Springer and Arcee.
"Nah, I was the same way until I got blown apart a few times."
“Didn’t you want to say something about concord and tranquillity in the galaxy?”
“Aww, give me a break.”
- —Ultra Magnus and Rodimus Prime.
Rodimus Prime: “This planet is quarantined. Nobody comes, nobody goes until we find Kup, Spike and Magnus.”
(A spaceship escapes)
Springer: “So much for quarantine. I need a ship!”
Arcee: “And you’ll need a gunner!”
(They both rush off, leaving Rodimus with cleanup)
Rodimus Prime: “Why’d I have to be the chosen one?”
- —Rodimus Prime is abandoned by Springer and Arcee.
Skuzzoid: "I surrender. I surrender. By galactic agreement, you are obliged to honor my surrender and... Springer: "I know what I'm obliged to do, and I don't care."
- —Skuzzoid begging for mercy and Springer not giving him any.
Arcee: Look, since you wrecked our ship, we're gonna have to take yours, therefore you're gonna have to take a hike. Got it? Skuzzoid: I got it, I got it.
- —Arcee negotiating and Skuzzoid before he bails out.
Cyclonus: “There’s nothing to fear, Unicron is dead.”
(They hear a sigh.)
Cyclonus: “Must be the wind.”
Scourge: “There is no wind in space.”
- —Cyclonus and Scourge learn that daddy's still home.
“Our charts don’t show any planets in that sector – no, wait. Here it is. I thought it was a smudge on the screen.”
“Yeah, that fits the description of Chaar.”
- — Rodimus Prime and Outback.
“I say we pulverowderize the Autobots! I say we pulverowderize ‘em!”
- — Rumble's inspirational rally.
“I never thought I’d feel sorry for the Decepticons.”
“Me Grimlock, not feel sorry. Me Grimlock laugh!” (snickers)
- — Rodimus Prime pities the Decepticons, while Grimlock mocks them with a disturbing chuckle.
Animation and/or technical glitches
- The Constructicons form Devastator, even though Mixmaster is absent in this episode.
- Reinforcing this first point, when Menasor strikes Devastator, we get to see only Bonecrusher, Scavenger, Hook and Long Haul when they are forcibly split up.
- The winner of the race in the Galactic Olympics uses Jazz's character model, but a few seconds later (if we are to assume that the results being read out after the scene-shift are for the race we've just seen) he's identified as "Munka Spanka." That possibility notwithstanding, it's also possible that the character was intended to be Jazz, only for the lines referring to him to be changed at some point during production. Scatman Crothers, Jazz's voice actor, had recently passed away, but Munka Spanka doesn't speak anyway, so... Most likely this is Jazz and the results of another race are being told.
- During the course of the episode, dead and deactivated bots are seen loitering around on Chaar. The list includes Kickback, Shrapnel, Thundercracker, Skywarp and the supposedly-on-Thrull Galvatron, celebrating his own imminent rescue. Thundercracker and Skywarp could perhaps just be other (similar) seekers as in early (season 1) episodes many more were seen on Cybertron.
- Perceptor's description of the transforming cog is rather confusing. He introduces it as Autobot City's transformation cog, but then says "it control's Metroplex's ability to transform". This begins an ongoing trend of the cartoon dialog treating the two as if they were one and the same, despite the animation showing them as two distinct (though sometimes related) entities.
- First appearance of Outback, Octane, Tantrum, and (gasp!) Abdul Fakkadi.
- The Quintesson who utters the line "Autobots, you walk the thin line between glory and despair. Soon you shall cross it." seems to be channelling Beast Wars Megatron when he says "Yesssss" afterwards.
- Middle East tensions in the 1980s resulted in the poorly made (depending on whom you ask) spoof called Carbombya.
- In one scene, Blurr asks why Metroplex's new transformation cog wasn't shipped via Galactic Express, an allusion to the fact that John Moschitta had previously appeared in a series of Federal Express commercials.
- In an interview with Flint Dille, he said that the Quintesson origin story came “The Secret of Cybertron," an aborted script for the movie by him and his fellow writer, Jay Bacal. 
- When originally aired, this and the other four parts of the story all had a unique set of opening credits. Unfortunately, the DVD release of the mini-series only includes this opening on parts 3 and 5.
- Though he didn't appear in the episode, Sparkplug is credited in the cast.
(Separate by commas and link each one so a page can be created for it if it does not already exist)
Quintessons, Season 3 episode