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Transformers: Generation 1
Scraplets are robotic parasites. They are semi-sentient robotic lifeforms, generally about five centimetres tall. Like the Transformers, Scraplets can transform between two modes: they transform from various humanoid or animal modes to nuts or bolts.
In the comic, the Scraplets first appeared as an interplanetary cloud which a Decepticon cargo freighter passed through on its voyage from Cybertron to Earth. During the incident, the pilot of the freighter was infected by the Scraplets and involuntarily brought them to Earth along with him.
Scraplets feed on other robotic lifeforms, which makes them very dangerous to them. Scraplets generally travel in large packs in search for robots, and on finding one, they eagerly jump onto it, fastening themselves to the robot's armour plating. Once fastened, the scraplets release some kind of corrosive agent that lets them sink partly under the armour plating and makes them impossible to remove. Using the raw materials of the host, one scraplet can multiply itself many times, creating further scraplets and rapidly overwhelming the host.
As the feeding continues, the host robot begins to rust and decay, withering away until its inevitable death. Scraplets are - in effect - very contagious, so other robots near an infected robot risk infection themselves.
Scraplets also can combine large numbers of themselves into a single giant humanoid-shaped creature, to attack large-scale threats/food.
However, scraplets have one major weakness: water is fatally poisonous to them. When doused with water, a scraplet loosens its grip on the host robot and falls away, letting it be safely destroyed without harming the host. Furthermore, they have no taste for organic material, so humans can approach them without fear.
The origin and homeworld of the scraplets has never been explained in the comic.
Scraplets appeared in the "Shattered Glass" storyline by Fun Publications. These scraplets came from a mirror-universe, and repaired robots, instead of destroying them. However, they eat dead Transformers such as their Cliffjumper.
Scraplets appeared in the "Dungeons & Dinobots". They were a potion designed to heal damaged Transformers. They feasted on dead metal, leaving healthy metal untouched. The metal is recycled into living metal or into more scraplets. They are fatal to Zombies. They were usually contained in vials, as the air in Cybertron's Shatterverse is loaded with water vapor, which kills them.
Scraplets appeared in Transformers: Prime. Like their comic book counterparts, the Scraplets ignore organic material. Unlike their comic book counterparts, they do not transform, and are spherical in shape. They can fly, and their mouths contain rows of razor-sharp teeth, which make a sound like a chainsaw when they are about to attack. While Scraplets will eat anything metal, they prefer living metal, making them a threat to Autobots and Decepticons alike, however like their comic incarnation, they are harmless to organics, making them vulnerable to attack by the Autobots' human allies, and on one occasion a human tricked the Scarlet swarm into an Insecticon by picking up a scraplet and throwing it at the Insecticon, causing the whole swarm to attack as well. The Scraplets demonstrate a weakness to cold temperatures; it is unknown if they have a weakness to water as in the comics. They are regarded as the most dangerous vermin on Cybertron. The episode "Scrapheap" marks their first appearance outside the comics.
In "Scrapheap", the Scraplets were recovered from a crashed escape pod buried in the Arctic. Once thawed, they invade the Autobot's HQ while Optimus and Arcee patrol the Arctic leaving Bumblebee, Bulkhead, Ratchet, Jack, Miko, and Raf to repel the enemy. The Autobots' human allies helped to fight against them. The Scraplets were frozen when Bulkhead lured them through the Ground Bridge back into the Arctic.
They are among the few lifeforms remaining on Cybertron. In "Orion Pax" Pt. 3, Jack Darby tries to stop a horde of scraplets from eating Vector Sigma. When an Insecticon catches up with him, Jack uses the Scraplets as a weapon to destroy the Insecticon where they end up chewing upon its body.
- Scraplets at Transformers Wiki