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Last battle
Vital Statistics
Alias Insecticon scum

Fiercest Insecticon

Species Cybertronian (Insecticon)
Rank Insecticon commander
Status Offline
Production details
First appearance Toxicity
Voiced by David Kaye
"Talk during battle is a sign of weakness."

Hardshell was an Insecticon and one of the originals with his brothers Sharpshot and Kickback. After rising to the surface of Cybertron to search for more Energon, he and his brothers were recruited into the Decepticon ranks. Sometime after the Great Exodus he and some of his brothers upgraded forms and found themselves on Earth. Hardshell met his end at Miko's hands when she fired a shot from Wheeljack's ship the Jackhammer in a mission to avenge Bulkhead.

It should be noted that Hardshell was the first character to have come so close to offlining an Autobot in the series since Starscream killed Cliffjumper. However, this was broken when Megatron killed Bumblebee who would later be revived and killed him in return.



Hardshell was one of the original and more evolved Insecticons who thrived near Cybertron's core. However when the core was infected with Dark Energon, the Insecticons were forced to move to higher ground to find more Energon. At some point they came into contact with Shockwave who manipulated them into joining the Decepticon ranks.


Sea of Rust

Hardshell, Kickback, Sharpshot and several Insecticons were seen in the Sea of Rust protecting a discovery made by Shockwave. They were interrupted by the arrival of the Lightning Strike Coalition but were able to capture them and killed one of them after a long and brutal fight.

Expeirment testing

Hardshell and his brothers took the survivors of the most feared Autobot combat unit to Shockwave who applied new beast alt modes of another world to them, making them stronger and faster. Hardshell, Kickback and Sharpshot then accompanied Shockwave as he tested on them nemerous times.

Grimlock encounter

Two of the experiments Grimlock and Swoop managed to escape their cells and went on a rampage in Shockwave's tower. Hardshell was sent in to stop the conflict and test Grimlock's new found power. He immeditley boarded a turret and began to fire on Grimlock but Swoop unlocked fuel pods which Grimock threw at Hardshell's turret and eventually destroyed it, leaving Hardshell hanging from it. Grimlock then grabbed him and rammed his face into a console to gain the Dinobot's access to the next room. He presumably regained consciousness and escaped the tower before it blew up.

Wreckers Encounter

Hardshell has claimed to have offlined several Wreckers since getting his new body, though its unknown what Wreckers he offlined, evidence to support this claim can be seen from the scars on his chest and his lengthy battle periods against Bulkhead and Hardshell later.


Controlled by Airachnid

Hardshell and his brothers found their way to Earth and locked themselves in stasis later to be discovered by Airachnid. The Insecticons were temporarily controlled by Airachnid but declared their allegiance to Megatron and joined the crew of the The Nemesis. Hardshell and his brethren were forced into stasis lock when the Nemesis became sentient and zapped the whole crew complement in stasis.

Iacon relic hunt/Fighting Bulkhead

Megatron called for the most ferocious Insecticon, Hardshell put his name forward, and was sent with three other Insecticons to a volcanic region near the equator to search for an Iacon relic. He encountered Bulkhead and fought the Wrecker, but came off second best and lost a mandible into the deal. After recovering, he and his Insecticon companions found the relic containing a small amount of Tox-En, an Energon variant. They attempted to track Bulkhead, who had taken most of the Tox-En, and after following a false trail the Autobots had left, eventually caught up with him in a volcano's crater. Though Bulkhead was weakened by the Tox-En, he managed to expose Hardshell to enough Tox-En to severely weaken him. The Autobot hurled the Tox-En at Hardshell, knocking him into a volcanic vent. While the Tox-En was destroyed, Hardshell survived and climbed out of the volcano. He blasted Bulkhead in the back as Bulkhead stepped through the GroundBridge.

Mission aftermath

Returning to the Nemesis, Hardshell faced Megatron's scolding by failing to bring the Tox-En, but mollified his master by relating the news that Bulkhead had been terminated, but Knock Out got on Hardshell's nerves by stating that his Insecticon partner turned out to be useless. Hardshell snarled at him and when Megatron asked if Hardshell was certain that Bulkhead was executed, Hardshell stated he was by his very own hand. As Hardshell gloated about his victory to two of his Insecticon brothers, two Vehicons then got on his nerves when they called him and the Insecticons "pit-bound scavengers and scrap-eaters", resulting in a brawl which made Knock Out tell Megatron that they should be contained after a minor scratch to the chest when Hardshell inadvertently punched him. When they had a call from Wheeljack a short time later with the news that Bulkhead wasn't dead after all, Hardshell tried to reason that Bulkhead could not have survived the wounds he received in the battle. Megatron angrily demanded Hardshell return with Wheeljack's spark instead.

Fighting Wheeljack/Death

The Insecticon found the Wrecker at an energon mine and the pair clashed, with Hardshell easily able to elude Wheeljack's grenade and eventually dominating the fight to the point where Wheeljack was on the ground and defenseless. As Hardshell stood over him, ready to deliver a killing blow, he was blasted by a pair of missiles from Miko who was piloting the Jackhammer, thus destroying Hardshell's spark and killing him for good. Hardshell's corpse was taken back to the Nemesis by the other Insecticons, who informed Megatron that a human girl was responsible for Hardshell's sudden death, which shocked and surprised him a little. Hardshell was metioned by Miko in Out of the Past. In Chain of Command, Wheeljack mentioned to Ultra Magnus that Miko saved his life from Hardshell and Miko mentioned Hardshell as a comeback at Starscream.

Personality and Traits

Hardshell was the most agressive and tough adversary in the Insecticons, and one of the Decepticons best warriors. This can be supported with Hardshell lasting lengthy periods against Grimlock, Bulkhead and Wheeljack and his claim of offlining several Wreckers. Shockwave described him as preferring to use combat strategy and weaponry over his insincts as seen by his choice of using a laser turret, but this did not mean he ignored his instincts totally as he quickly caught on to Bulkhead's misleading tactic.

He also seemed to have the intention for gloating about the Autobots (mainly Wreckers) that he offlined to his Insecticon brothers, but seemed to have little patience for those who insult him or his brothers as seen when he was quite willing to attack several Vehicons and Knock Out after the two insulted the Insecticons. He also did not seem to believe in mid battle banter, viewing it as a sign of weakness. 

Behind the Scenes

  • Hardshell is voiced by David Kaye who also voiced Megatron in the Generation One sequels "Beast Wars" and "Beast Machines". He also voiced Megatron in every series in the Unicron Trilogy "Armada", "Energon" and "Cybertron". To top it off, he also voiced Optimus Prime himself as well as Lugnut in Transformers: Animated.



Main Article: Hardshell Gallery


  • "There is no greater ferocity than an Insecticon hive. But... If you were to choose one among us.. *Hardshell lands on the bridge behind Megatron* I am Hardshell."
  • "Divide! And do not hesitate to conquer!!!"
  • "You know a thing or two about dirty tricks yourself, Wrecker." - Hardshell to Bulkhead in Toxicity.
  • "I know your kind. I have crossed more than a few Wreckers in my time."
  • "The Wrecker left me alive....*breathes out air deeply*...the last mistake he will ever make."
  • "No! Wait!!!"
  • "Yes. The Wrecker leaks from his wounds. Find him!"
  • "There is no logic in his movements. His trail was meant to lead us astray. To find the Wrecker, we must not follow. We must anticipate."
  • "Wrecker!!! Put down the rock and allow us to put you out of your misery."
  • "Your spark is mine...Wrecker!"
  • "I have none my lord. We failed to retrieve the Tox-En. But the green Autobot has been terminated."
  • "By my very own hand Lord Megatron."
  • "You should of seen the Wrecker's face when his spark expired. Knowing that he perished at the hands of a true warrior. Lord Megatron now understands that the difficult tasks are best assigned to an Insecticon."
  • "What did you say?!?"
  • "You could not produce restraints strong enough to hold us."
  • " He is bluffing!"
  • "Lord Megatron I swear upon the AllSpark the Autobot could not have survived his wounds!"
  • "Thanks to your crippled friend, I am all too familiar with your Wrecker tricks."
  • "Talk during battle is a sign of Weakness."
  • "Your spark will now belong to Megatron!" - Last words before death.


  • Hardshell is generally named "Bombshell" but due to a copyright on the name from Hasbro, Fall of Cybertron and Prime had to change his name to "Hardshell"
  • His design in Fall of Cybertron is heavily based upon his Generation One counterpart.
  • Exactly when he changed into his robot form is unknown.
  • He is presently the only member of the original three Insecticons to make an appearance in Transformers: Prime.
  • If Hardshell had faced against Optimus, it would be an interesting battle for fans.
  • He is the first Decepticon in the Transformers: Prime series to have come so close to offlining a main Autobot character since the series beginning. Tailgate and Seaspray don't count as they aren't main characters.
  • Hardshell's statement that he has fought several Wreckers implies that he has fought the unit either constantly or on a frequent basis during the war.

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