- Thundercracker is a Decepticon in the Armada and Cybertron portions of the Unicron Trilogy continuity family.
Thundercracker suffered from low self-esteem and longed for approval from authority figures to validate his existence. He was willing to work as hard as necessary to gain attention and praise from Megatron, but when all his efforts were ignored or taken for granted, he grew frustrated. Thundercracker felt the need to engage in ever more risky and reckless behavior in an attempt to gain Megatron's notice. Many predicted this would lead to his destruction.
When next we see Thundercracker it is over ten years later, loyally serving under Starscream during the search for the Cyber Planet Keys. In the intervening years he became something of a jokester and goofball. This has often gained him the attention that he craves. Though frequently, especially when Megatron is the brunt of the joke, it is far from positive attention. Thundercracker doesn't seem mature enough to tell the difference, but he does know when to get the smelt out of Decepticon HQ before Megatron looks for someone to pummel.
When Starscream gained his new coloration, he stated with distaste that he looked just like Thundercracker.
Back outside the boundaries of the Unicron Singularity, Thundercracker and the few remaining Decepticons still loyal to Galvatron were given a boost of Omega Lock power, super-sizing them so they could take on the massed armies that had gathered from all of the colony worlds to oppose them. Thundercracker took on Optimus Prime himself to give Galvatron time to achieve his goal. However, Thundercracker was then gang-attacked by Leobreaker, Hot Shot, Jetfire, and Landmine, giving Prime the opportunity to chase Galvatron into the black hole.
Thundercracker continued to fight, and came very close to being directly in the path of the singularity-collapsing cannon-blast from the massive Ark starship.
After the defeat of Galvatron and the closing of the Unicron Singularity, Thundercracker realized that Galvatron was going to let him die in the cataclysm that his plan would have caused, and along with the other now-de-powered Decepticons, ran off. When the rocket boosters that were built on the Jungle Planet to push the world back to its normal place in the cosmos began to fail, the four Decepticons arrived, cackling... and helped with the efforts to keep the thrusters upright and functional, deciding to try being on the winning team for once.
Thundercracker spent most of his time then on Earth, under the supervision of Mudflap, helping rebuild cities damaged by the Singularity's effects. When the Autobots were ready to begin their Space Bridge initiative, Thundercracker went to see his new "best friend" Optimus Prime off. Unfortunately, he ran across his former Decepticon allies, who were sick of trying to fit in, and had built a ramshackle rocket and taken off to form the New Decepticon Army. The trio shanghaied Thundercracker, who really didn't want to join them, and took off for parts unknown.
They made it as far as Mars before the rocket crashed.
- Thundercracker with Zapmaster (Max-Con, 2003)
- Accessories: Wing-sword, 2 "blast" missiles
- Thundercracker is a redeco of Armada Starscream, transforming into a Cybertronic fighter jet. In both modes, pressing down on his cockpit canopy activates electronic sound effects; in jet mode, it also deploys his Mini-Con partner Zapmaster if he is stored under the cockpit. Plugging a Mini-Con onto his rearmost Powerlinx plug releases two spring-activated over-shoulder spring-loaded missile launchers, as well as more electronic sound effects. His left wing detaches and unfolds to form a large sword for use in robot mode. He is something of a rarity in the Armada line, in that he is a redeco that is a new, separate character rather than a "Powerlinx" upgrade of an existing character.
- In Japan, Thundercracker's toy is simply a "powered up" version of Starscream.
- Thundercracker (Built to Rule, 2003)
- For the Built to Rule line, Thundercracker was once again a redeco, a new-color version of the Starscream set. He can be assembled into a Cybertronic fighter jet or a robot, or to whatever else you feel like making out of the blocks provided (or any blocks you feel like adding). He came with a building-brick version of Zapmaster. The set features two missile launchers that use a unique "twist-block" pressure-launch mechanism. He was one of the last of the Transformers Built To Rule toys released at wide retail.
- Thundercracker (Deluxe, 2005)
- Japanese ID number: GD-02
- Accessories: Missile, Earth Cyber Key
- Part of the first wave of the Cybertron series, Thundercracker transforms into a Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jet. Inserting a Cyber Planet Key into his rear fuselage pops up the back panel, revealing a spring-loaded missile launcher. This assembly becomes his left forearm in robot mode, despite being almost as long as he is tall. He came with a silver-bordered Earth-style Cyber Planet Key; the Hasbro release has the Key Code "d98d" tampographed on the back of it.
- The Takara Galaxy Force release of the toy is slightly different from the later Hasbro Cybertron release, mainly the Hasbro version added a Decepticon insignia to the missile-launcher cover.
- Ground To Air Blast Pack: Crosswise vs Thundercracker (Multi-pack, 2006)
- In 2006, Target got multiple exclusive toys and reduced-price multi-packs, among them a set with unaltered versions of Thundercracker and Crosswise for about 75% of the cost of two Deluxes normally.
- Thundercracker with Downshift (Tiny Tins multi-pack, 2006)
- Part of a run of Wal-Mart exclusive sets, Thundercracker was also sold in a larger box that came with a special redeco of the Race Mini-Con Team member Downshift, plus a special Tiny Tins carrying tin for the Mini-Con. Thundercracker was altered to have both a different color scheme as well as a different tampograph decor than his normal release.
- Thundercracker (Legends of Cybertron, 2006)
- A smaller, simplified version of the deluxe toy was released in the fourth wave of the Legends of Cybertron line. Unlike the large toy, this version has two robot-mode fists, and the blaster-weapon is now an arm-mounted double-barreled weapon. The back panel does open, but he doesn't have a missile launcher.
- This mold was used to make Classics Jetfire, and the 2008 Universe Legends-class Starscream and Silverbolt.
- Excellion vs. Thundercracker (Multipack, 2007)
- During Christmastime 2007, Wal-Mart got several exclusive double-packs of Cybertron Deluxes sold under the Universe banner. For this series, Thundercracker came packaged with Excellion.
- According to Joe Kyde, the reason for Armada Thundercracker's red face was because the gray plastic used to make the eyes is unpaintable plastic, so he changed the original plan from gray face and red eyes to red face and gray eyes.
- One of Thundercracker's lines in the episode "Inferno", as well as several other episodes, is "git 'r' done". Seriously.
- In the the last episode of Cybertron, Thundercracker showed no signs of hard feelings towards the Autobots, and was even shown working hard on the Space Bridge for them. Even later when he is shanghaied by his former allies, he is shown wearing a rather badly drawn Autobot symbol on his chest. This could make this Thundercracker much like his Generation One namesake in that he doesn't have any real hatred towards the Autobots.
- He also doesn't like Starscream which makes him more like his Generation One counterpart.
- Of all the Decepticons in the Cybertron cartoon, Thundercracker is the only one who stayed loyal to Megatron/Galvatron from start to finish (well, at least till Galvatron betrayed him).
- Cybertron Thundercraker always seemed to come up with new "Attacks" (most of which failed horribly). The only successful attack was against Jetfire, namely his "Super Electric Lightning Thundercrackin' Punch".
- In Armada's Russian dub Starscream says "Looks like lightning hit me". This is a horrible mistranslation of "Thundercracker". Dubjerks!