Dr. Lacus, who created the War Machine and The Automaton, created this third monstrosity of a boss tank, if two weren't enough. Its standard mode is a red circle with a flashing red and white circle in the middle. When it transforms, the circle rapidly flashes, and it can take the form of any fully-upgraded tank. In its idle mode, it has a spinning heptagon beneath its body. The official name for this contraption in development was 'Project: Pseudo'.
The Shifter has a multitude of attacks, one for each tank it can morph into. It also has a few special attacks to itself, including a second phase.
Transform: This is used randomly. When transforming, the bottommost barrels will come out, followed by any other layered barrels on top. The opposite happens when it changes form. The Shifter is most vulnerable when it is transforming, as attacks are much more effective on it when that happens.
Tanky Things: Shifter will act like the tank it is transformed into, basically just doing what players would do with that tank. Used the most often.
Stream: Used in Triplet form. Releases a highly concentrated line of bullets from its three barrels for 5 seconds. Any tank that is caught in the bullet stream is pushed along with the bullets, which do small amounts of damage.
Sanitize: Used in Penta Shot form. It moves to a corner and shakes its body to sprinkle high-damage bullets from side to side for 8 seconds. Resembles a hailstorm from the right perspective. Tanks in the bullet storm are pretty much trapped.
Wave: Used in Spread Shot form. The frontal barrel fires first and releases a Destroyer bullet, followed by the rest of the barrels releasing normal-sized bullets all at once. Usually repeated 2-4 times.
Tornado: Used in Triple Twin form. The two barrels on each side split into 4 barrels for each set, and spins rapidly while firing Gunner-sized bullets for several seconds.
Gatling: Used in Octotank form. The Shifter stays stationary for a moment, and suddenly its barrels start spinning incredibly rapidly while an Auto Turret pops out of the top. The barrels will stop spinning every now and then to release 10 speedy bullets in a straight line from each barrel, and continue spinning. While this is happening, the Auto Turret on top will fire at players. Any bullets that are fired at The Shifter while it's spinning (only in this attack) will be deflected and disappear. Any tanks that touch its spinning barrels will get damaged equal to half of their max health and are flung away.
Launch: Used in Booster form. A big red target will appear over one of the fighting tanks. One second later, the Shifter will whizz by and ram into the targeted tank. The damage is avoidable by moving out of the target, but it's hard because the target is big (radius: 4 tiles.) If the Shifter hits a Fortress wall by accident, it will be Paralyzed for five seconds and will use Transform afterwards.
Strafe: Used in Fighter form. The two side barrels will split in two, while the rear barrels will increase their reload. The Shifter will sweep through the largest crowd of tanks, dealing damage as it goes through. The front cannon is moved to the back while this attack is occurring for extra movement speed.
Automatize: Used in Auto 5 form. It will start moving in a square that is 10x10, and point all of its available cannons to face one player, and fire at them rapidly while moving in the square pattern. It will follow the pattern for 5 repetitions.
Toggle: Used in Sprayer form. The Shifter will release Sprayer bullets in a much wider spread than normal and quickly stop within 2 seconds. It will repeat this attack six times in rapid succession.
Eradicate: Used in Auto Gunner form. The Auto Cannon gains an enormous Lancer spike that protrudes way outside the Shifter, and it detaches to chase tanks while the Shifter fires upon them. Lasts for 20 seconds.
Release: Used in Streamliner form. It will gain an extra 5 overlapping barrels to form 2 sets of Streamliner barrels side to side, and point them at one player and fire. Surprisingly easy to avoid, since the barrels are so far apart that a level 45 tank can just stay still and let the bullets stream past them.
Exterminate: Used in Annihilator form. The Shifter fires three homing large Crashers, which have as much health and body-damage as a maxed Spike. Once all three Crashers are killed, it will fire three more again and the attack ends.
Capture: Used in Hybrid form. The drone barrel on the back releases 16 drones, which immediately surround a tank, but form a tight 310 degree angle around it. They will slowly herd in the tank, which is granted damage immunity, towards the Shifter. When it is close enough the drones will disperse and will become killable, the buff will end, and the Shifter will fire a Destroyer bullet right in the face of the captured tank. The damage immunity is to prevent the tank from dying on the drones that surround it. Once the attack ends, the drones will act like normal triangle drones that are controlled by an Overlord/Overseer/Manager and will be killable.
Navigate: Used in Auto Smasher form. The Shifter's Auto Turret will project a laser onto 6 tanks in a certain order, and the Shifter will attempt to ram into them in that order. If it fails to ram into one tank for 5 seconds, then it will move onto the next. If no tanks are rammed into, the Auto Turret will gain an additional 3 barrels like a Quad Tank and fire randomly in any direction.
Shield: Used in Landmine form. The Shifter will surround itself with a transparent green circle, while it regenerates 50 HP every two seconds for 30 seconds. The forcefield will knock tanks back, but if it is destroyed while the Shifter is still regeneration, the Shifter will attempt to chase down the player that destroyed the shield (landed the last hit on it.) The shield has the health of an Alpha Pentagon.
Slice: Used in Spike form. Lancer spikes will protrude from all of the Shifter's base body spikes, and it will spin rapidly and increase its movement speed by 300% for 10 seconds. However, body damage dealt to tanks is halved but the knockback is increased by 200%. All tanks hit will also receive the Broken debuff for 15 seconds, although this is after they have been hit. It will slow down and repeat this attack again, except for 8 seconds the second time around.
Scope: Used in Stalker form. The Stalker barrel splits and two, and the two halves rotate away from each other in a full rotation. When they come back together, a rectangular barrel extends from the now-formed barrel and five high-speed shots are fired off. These are very hard to avoid, but they have much more penetration than damage. 50% chance to transform into Ranger directly after this and use...
Aim: Used in Ranger form. A scope rectangle appears on top of the trapezoid part of the barrel, and the Shifter points it at the tank with the highest score before proceeding to fire off at it with an extremely high-speed shot which is almost unavoidable. This deals heavy damage, and the Shifter will go after the second and third-highest tanks that are on the leaderboard. 75% chance to transform into Predator afterwards and use...
Fire!: Used in Predator form. When it occurs directly from Ranger, the three barrels start alternating rapidly and begin letting off a hailstorm of bullets while the Shifter aims at tanks randomly. Lasts for 8 seconds.
Overkill: Used in Overlord form. It will begin producing drones at an INCREDIBLE rate, which attempt to target the closest tank to them. If they do not succeed in destroying their targeted tank within 10 seconds, all the drones will explode, dealing heavy damage to any tanks unlucky enough to be around them when it happens.
Awaken: Used in Necromancer form. The symbol of The Lich flashes on the center of the screen, and any nearby squares become the Shifter's undead minions. These minions have the equivalent of 10 points in Drone Health, Speed, and Damage. If there are less than 30 squares in the vicinity, then the Shifter will create its own drones at the cost of a little bit of its health.
Cloak: Used in Manager form. The Shifter will make itself disappear and teleport to somewhere else in the room while regenerating health at 50 HP every two seconds. If a tank is able to hit it while it's cloaked, the effect ends and the Shifter will attempt to capture the offending tank with its drones. When this happens, the tank that is drawn in is dealt HUGE amounts of damage by the drones if it can't escape. However, the tank will usually survive because the drones are quite slow.
Armament: Used in Battleship form. Two small semicircles appear on the sides without drone spawners. The drones proceed to form a lance and a shield for the Shifter, that look very similar to the Wicked Prince. Like a normal battleship, the drones will disappear after a few seconds, but the Shifter will still be constantly producing drones to replace the ones lost while the attack is ongoing. This attack lasts for 20 seconds, and during this time the Shifter will attempt to both poke tanks with its lance and reflect bullets off its shield.
Retreat: Used in Factory form. The Shifter creates 6 Defensive Turrets in front of it and retreats into the nearest corner. These turrets have 1/2 their normal health (1/4 of an Alpha Pentagon.) When all the turrets are destroyed, six lime green circles will rise from the areas where the Turrets were and fly into the Shifter, letting it gain some health back (randomized between 100-500 as a whole.)
Fortify: Used in Auto Trapper form. The Auto Turret barrel will split in three to form a tiny Triplet, while the trap barrel creates a copy of itself. The Shifter wedges itself into a corner while the Auto Turret fires at tanks and the two trap barrels create a barrier of Traps. During this attack, the Shifter will regenerate health at 10 HP per second.
Pointy: Used in Mega Trapper form. The trap barrel will widen substantially and release three AI-controlled Spikes that will chase players down. They have a 0/10/10/10 build but have much more health. During this time, the Shifter will attempt to build a wall while the tanks are distracted. If a tank isn't distracted and goes after the Shifter, then it will use Transform. If it does manage to finish its wall, it transforms into Tri-Trapper and uses...
Trump: Used in Tri-Trapper form and only after Pointy. The three trap barrels will all move to one side and the Shifter will move vertically up and down to create a long, thick trap barrier. If any tank hits the traps by accident, then they are given the "Mexican" debuff for 10 seconds.This causes the tank to gain a mariachi hat and guitar and start dancing around in a small area. Yes. Very stereotypical.
Deter: Used in Tri-Trapper form if not coming after Pointy. The trap barrels will split in two to form a total of six trap barrels, and a big Auto Turret with eight barrels appears up top. The Shifter will spin and fire traps to protect itself while the Auto Turret will fire at tanks in all directions. The Shifter will also regenerate 30 HP every two seconds while this attack is in effect for 16 seconds.
Barrage: Used in Gunner Trapper form. The trap barrel will move to the same side as the Gunner barrels, and fire both off at the same time (the trap barrel has the same reload as the gun barrels) at different tanks. Lasts for 7 seconds.
Freeway: Used in Overtrapper form. The trap barrel splits in two and move to two sides, and the drone barrels merge into one and move in between the two trap barrels. The Shifter fires fast-moving traps that enclose a tank between two trap lines with an opening at the end. Regardless if the tank makes it out or not, two seconds later four drones will come speeding down the "road". Once they reach the end, they will go back into the Shifter's drone barrels. Any tanks that are hit inside the "road" are knocked into the curb of traps, dealing high damage to them.
Chase: Used in Cartographer form. One tank is marked for destruction, and the Shifter will chase the tank down for 30 seconds, ignoring other tanks that fire at it. If it fails to catch the tank, the Shifter will use Transform.
Shielding: Used in Paladin form. The spikes all swing left or right to cover the entire tank, and spins quickly. Tanks hit will receive the Broken and Paralyzed debuff. This attack lasts for about 15 seconds.
Encircle: Used in Thruster form. The Shifter runs circles around a group of tanks, where the side lances extend to deal damage to the tanks inside. Lasts for 10 seconds.
Flee: Used in Rocket form. All barrels will point directly backwards while the Shifter runs from all tanks, while passively regenerating a small amount of health. This defensive behavior lasts for 15-30 seconds.
If all possible transformations have been exhausted, the Shifter can transform into one of these transformations only once:
Magnetize: Used in Mothership form. The drones start moving in a pattern that resembles a magnetic field around the Shifter, and any nearby tanks slowly begin to be pulled in. Once they are close enough, the drones attack them.
Selection: Used in Dominator form. The three Dominator forms will be rotated through quickly, and the Shifter will land on one and start using it to attack nearby tanks. Lasts for 30 seconds.
Eject: Used in Arena Closer form. The Shifter will rapidly fire Arena Closer bullets for 6 seconds, but the bullets do little damage or penetration. However, they do still have the insane bullet speed that will cause any tank hit to bounce uncontrollably around the room for the next few seconds.
Once one of these transformations are used, the normal sequence resumes. If all three special transformations are used, the Shifter will go to Stage 2 regardless of its health.
Once the boss dips below 1/4 health, the second stage begins. The Shifter retracts its current form and transforms into a new form. Five Lancer spikes are evenly spaced around it, and in between of those spikes are trap launchers. Five Auto Turrets are arranged in a circle on top while in the middle is a rapidly flashing yellow-white core. The Shifter also gains 3000 health back instantly. The heptagon still is beneath the body.
De-Energize: This is always active. An energy-replenishing feature didn't go as planned, so instead of 50 HP being given back when this tank attacks, it actually looses 50 HP instead. This is to speed the fight along.
Alpha: The trap launchers are retracted and the spikes extend, while the core starts flashing rapidly. Directly after this, it uses...
Omega: The Auto Turrets on top aim at different tanks while the spikes rotate rapidly. The Shifter will instantly ram into a random tank, doing heavy damage. This attack sequence can't be used again until all other attacks are used.
Fortifry: (yes, that spelling is intended.) The trap launchers make a barrier of traps around the Shifter, while the Auto Turrets point in one direction and release a flurry of tiny Gunner bullets while spinning around. Any tank that is hit will receive the Burned debuff. Lasts for 12 seconds.
Strike: The spikes will retract in slightly, then fly out at an incredible speed. Tanks that are hit will receive MASSIVE body damage. After 4 seconds, this attack is used again.
Sparky: The Auto Turrets merge into a mini-Dominator turret with the core on top. The core will go from white to red as it charges up to release a glowing red bullet that is cracking with electricity. Any tank hit will receive heavy damage and the Paralyzed debuff. It takes 5 seconds to charge up the shot. After this, the turret de-merges into 5 individuals again.
Final Attack Sequence
The following attacks occur in order when the Shifter reaches 5% health.
Five: The trap and spikes are completely retracted. All tanks are rooted in place and the Shifter gains damage immunity.
Four: The core starts flashing very fast, and the Auto Turrets all face in.
Three: The Auto Turrets start pumping energy into the core, which starts glowing faintly red.
Two: The core glows very red, while the Auto Turrets disengage and retract into the Shifter.
One: The Shifter shakes uncontrollably, and tanks can move again. They have ten seconds to destroy the Shifter. If they fail, Zero is used. If they succeed, Deactivate is used. However, there is a 10% chance of Recall happening in place of both.
Zero: The Shifter starts shaking even more uncontrollably, and all tanks have five seconds to get out of the room before it explodes, instantly killing any tank left in there.
Deactivate: The Shifter suddenly shuts down and collapses into a heap of polygons, and all tanks that took part in the fight (at any point, even those who died) are granted 50,000 points.
Recall: A portal opens, and the Shifter is sucked in. The screen will then shake slightly as an explosion is heard in the distance. All players will receive a Panzer Token when this happens instead of a bounty.
- As a little side effect, the G1 Transformers transforming sound will play every time this boss changes form.
- The same mysterious scientist accidentally programmed a little quirk in this tank. When it is lured into another room of the Fortress and there happens to be another (minor) boss tank in there, it will completely ignore the tanks it was fighting before and go for that boss tank! Said boss tank will also do the same and go after the Shifter once it notices it.
- This tank is the only Son of Panzer to not have a specific tank that it resembles.
- All of the attack names are one word, but the tank is anything but simple. It has the most attacks of any Fortress boss tank.
- Only one tank represented here has two distinct attacks to its form, the Tri-Trapper.
- It is the one of the only Fortress Boss Tanks with a BGM, owing to its unique abilities.