Whether or not they're are still called Combaticons, that was the working title for this batch of characters...sadly my game is still shrink-wrapped and mocking me on the coffee table until I get time to play it!
As with everything, it all starts with very simple sketches/thumbnail ideas to find form. I really only spend about 15-20 minutes (or less!) per sketch, it's kind of a flood of ideas at this point.
After we settle on an idea, I take it to the next step, a grayscale over a tighter drawing. I incorporate the vehicle form, the bot form, and if I can, I try to drop in a little action sketch to help find the personality.
So this is the image that gets sent to Hasbro for approval to continue on to the final.