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In The Transformers, the Insecticons were introduced as Decepticons who had taken alternate forms based on insect life rather than vehicles who eventually met up with Megatron and their other comrades on Earth. Gaining the ability to refuel by consuming matter both organic and inorganic and the power to clone themselves, they quickly became a considerable threat to the Earth. Though they would aid the Decepticons, they answered to Megatron only when it suited them and would gladly attack both them and the Autobots if it meant advancing their own goals.
The Transformers: The Movie saw the Insecticons participate in the Battle of Autobot City, only to end up among the Decepticons who were left critically damaged by these events. As such, they were then pushed out of Astrotrain on the way back to Cybertron, only to be reformatted by Unicron into a new set of minions for Galvatron. The Insecticons would also appear in season three of the animated series, either due to some clones surviving or animation errors.