Transformers is a Japanese–American media franchise produced by American toy company Hasbro and Japanese toy company Takara Tomy. It follows the battles of sentient, living autonomous robots, often the Autobots and the Decepticons, who can transform into other forms, such as vehicles and animals. The franchise encompasses toys, animation, comic books, video games and films.
The franchise began in 1984 with the Transformers toy line, comprising transforming mecha toys from Takara's Diaclone and Microman toylines rebranded for Western markets. The term "Generation 1" covers both the animated television series The Transformers and the comic book series of the same name, which are further divided into Japanese, British and Canadian spin-offs, respectively. Sequels followed, such as the Generation 2 comic book and Beast Wars TV series, which became its own mini-universe. Generation 1 characters underwent two reboots with Dreamwave in 2001 and IDW Publishing in 2005, with a third starting in 2019. There have been other incarnations of the story based on different toy lines during and after the 20th century.