The Death Saurer was developed as a counter to the Republic's Ultrasaurus, a Zoid that was considered to be unstoppable. To defeat it, the Death Saurer was armed with a new weapon, the Charged Particle Cannon. This weapon, long considered to be one of the most powerful ever mounted on a Zoid, was capable of levelling almost any target in a single blast. No form of armour or defense was effective against this weapon. While other Zoids have mounted Charged Particle Cannons, the Death Saurer's is still the most powerful. Additionally, unlike other CPC-armed Zoids, the Death Saurer does not need to be immobilised in order to fire its cannon.
In addition to its powerful weapons, the Death Saurer is also covered by some of the thickest armour on any Zoid. The Death Saurer's armour was designed to defend against such weapons as the Ultrasaurus' quad 360 mm Cannons and the Gojulas Supercannons. The only weakness in its armour is the intake for its Charged Particle Cannon. The intake is less protected than the rest of its body, and is vulnerable to attack. Destroying it will expose the Zoid's power system to a direct attack.
The Death Saurer's only other weakness is the ponderously slow speed at which it moves, which makes it an easy target. Of course, its thick armour and powerful weapons mean that it can survive almost any assault.
The Republic began a program to overcome this failing, eventually resulting in the deployment of the Madthunder in ZAC 2048. The Madthunder force was used to counterattack the Death Saurer force in the Republic's capital, and succeeded in defeating them. From there, the Republic drove towards the Empire's capital, capturing it in ZAC 2049. Zenebas' personal Death Saurer was one of the first Zoids to face a Guylos Deadborder, being crushed by the latter's gravity cannons. The surviving Death Saurers were integrated into the Guylos army and served as shock troops, but were destroyed in the meteor strike of ZAC 2056.
In ZAC 2099, the Guylos Empire found the ruins of a previously unknown advanced civilisation on Mount Olympus, on the Western Continent of Europa. Inside these ruins was a Death Saurer which, while damaged, provided them with enough information to reverse engineer its technology and begin limited production of it for their armies. They also developed a new Zoid from its systems, the Geno Saurer.
In response, the Helic army began work on recreating the Madthunder. The two massive Zoids faced each other again in ZAC 2102 on the Dark Continent, the Helic Madthunders again triumphing. However, Imperial Regent Gunter Prozen had his own Zoid, the Bloody Death Saurer. He used it to attack the Helic forces in the Imperial capital, before it was disabled by a Guylos Iron Kong. Mortally wounded, Prozen set the Zoid to overload and explode, destroying the city and the bulk of the two armies present.
In ZAC 2230, the Zi-Arms corporation found the wreckage of a Death Saurer. Using technologies developed for the Chimera Blox, they revived it in a new form, the Mega Death Saurer. However, the Zoid went berserk and attacked everything around it, destroying the Zi-Arms forces. In the end, the combined power of the three legendary Tiger Zoids, Whitz Tiger, Rayse Tiger and Brastle Tiger was required to destroy it.
The Death Saurer first appeared in Zoids: Chaotic Century, as a major part of the central plot of the series. It is depicted as a truly evil Zoid with a thirst for death and destruction and a will of its own, able to possess the minds of lesser beings such as Prozen and Hiltz. In the past, before humans came to Planet Zi, the Death Saurer had been created by the Zoidans and wiped them all out, with the exceptions of Fiona, Hiltz and Reese. After this, it was defeated by two unnamed scorpion zoids. As a part of his plot to take over the Guylos Empire and the rest of Zi, Imperial Regent Gunther Prozen revived the Death Saurer and used it to attack the Imperial capital, and armies from both the Helic Repbulic and the Gulyos empire were powerless to stop it. The Zoid was destroyed by Van Flyheight's Blade Liger, exploding and apparently killing Prozen.
In Zoids: Guardian Force, Hiltz planned to use the Death Saurer, enhanced by the Zoid Core of the Death Stinger, to destroy all life on Zi. It was explained that while the core was genuine, the body of the Death Saurer fought in the Imperial capital was a low-quality copy. The core survived by fusing with Prozen, who had inexplicably managed to survive the destruction of the first Death Saurer. The 'true' Death Saurer was found at the end Guardian Force, having been locked in an ancient city, but was revived when Prozen and the Death Stinger's core were fused to create a new core for it. The revived Death Saurer was much stronger than the first, leaving Van's Blade Liger and Raven's Geno Breaker unable to harm it. Even the Ultrasaurus's gravity cannon is unable to damage this Death Saurer, and the Ultrasaurus was crippled by it. Using a large lens like object, Hiltz (now merged with the Death Saurer's core), was able to use the Death Saurer's charged particle cannon on target all across Zi. Fiona initially planned to destroy the Zoid Eve to stop the Death Saurer (an event that would actually cause the destruction of all Zoids), but eventually came up with the plan of firing Van's Blade Liger out of the Ultrasaurus's gravity cannon to destroy the Death Saurer. Before that happened, Raven discovered an energy shield around the Death Saurer that he'd have to break down for Van's idea to work, and managed to do so even though it used all of the Geno Breaker's power. After being fired out of the gravity cannon, the Blade Liger successfully destroyed the Death Saurer.
Not physically but in more of a visual, the Death Saurer's lone appearance in Zoids: New Century Zero is a super deformed version breathing fire (apparently intended as "animation within the animation") at the start of a news broadcast. The Death Saurer is also mentioned in passing in some episodes; Doctor Laon boasts that his custom transport, the "Great Whale King" is as powerful as one, and Steve Tauros mentions offhand that his Hover Cargo's shield could deflect shots from a Death Saurer's Charged Particle Cannon.
The animation model of the Death Saurer also has somewhat exaggerated proportions; the Zoid's neck is longer and thinner than the model's, while the head is proportionally smaller, making it more closely resemble Godzilla than the model kit. Its claws are also elongated and razor sharp, as opposed to the blunt, squared off fingers of the model kit.
The Death Saurer kit comes on five frames (one of which is a weapons frame also shared with the Red Horn, Sabre Tiger and Dimetrodon), along with a battery-powered motor with light, a clear frame, thirty-two rubber caps, a frame of washers, a rubber band, two small chromed silver pilots, and label sheets. The Death Saurer is moulded in bronze, bright red, and silver, with silver weapons and a smoke-coloured canopy.
The Death Saurer’s construction is reasonably involved and complex, especially given the Zoids size. The Death Saurer uses a pair of “C” sized batteries for motion. Once activated, the Zoid walks forwards, waving its arms, sweeping its tail from side to side, the jaws opening and closing and the fan on its back spinning. The Death Saurer's eyes also flash on and off.
Like several other Zoids of the time, the Death Saurer could use a number of different optional weapons that were included in the Empire Customise Set. The Death Saurer was released in 1987, and was produced up until about 1989.