High Moon Studios did great work on Transformers: War For Cybertron, then stumbled quite a bit on Transformers: Dark Of The Moon. That doesn’t stop us from having high hopes for the studios next big title, Transformers: Fall Of Cybertron. Thankfully this title is another original story and not a movie tie-in which means there is definitely a lot of hope for the game and thanks to Activision community manager, Dan Amrich we have new details about the game. Apparently Dan got a first look at the game last week and has now revealed some interesting details about the next installment in the Cybertron saga.
The first thing he talked about was how much High Moon has taken fan input into account, listening to what fans didn’t like and fixing it. According to the game’s director Matt Tieger their goal this time around was to take everything gamers didn’t like about War for Cybertron and make them so good that they would actually be selling points for the game this time around. The main elements they wanted to work on were improving the AI, reducing repetition in the gameplay, and bringing more variety to the visuals. This game still takes place on Cybertron or what’s left of it after all the fighting. The Decepticons have taken over the planet and only a few Autobots remain. The Ark, the ship that took the Cybertronians to Earth, is under construction, and many bots have already fled the planet through other means.Optimus Prime has some very tough decisions ahead of him, does he stay and fight or retreat and plan to fight another day. Either decision will its consequences and let’s just say that not all the Autobots are on board with Optimus Prime’s decision, no matter which one he makes. This may give the game a bit of an RPG element though we are not sure how much at this point.
Transformers: Fall Of Cybertron also gives us more backstory about the mysterious Grimlock. Players will be able to play as Starscream as he watches the Decepticons torture Grimlock and then as the story progresses they will be able to take control of Grimlock himself. Grimlock isn’t your standard Autobot, he uses a sword and shield melee style and breathes fire. Most of the other bots use long-range attacks with guns and such but Grimlock is uniquely equipped for some seriously vicious up close and personal combat. He’s like a damn space T-Rex.
Transformers: War For Cybertron was broken up into two campaigns, telling the story from both the Autobot and Decepticon point of view. Lots of players felt like this made the game feel a little disjointed so Fall Of Cybertron has just one narrative but will still shift between characters as you go. The team doesn’t want players to rush through the game and they have designed it to let players truly appreciate and experience everything Cybertron has to offer. I’m not too sure about this one, hopefully they got the pacing right because if they don’t the game could feel like its being dragged on. Cybertron is a huge world and the team went to a lot of trouble to make sure players got the feel of that scale, both in the planet itself and its characters. They even had a level in the game was at the maximum size the current Unreal Engine could support. Take Bruticus for instance, he’s the combined form of the Constructicons, and he’s big but then there is Metroplex, an entire city that is itself a Transformer. Optimus can give Metroplex strike commands and Metroplex attacks. This should be really, really freaking cool.
Transformers: Fall Of Cybertron isn’t a cover-based game, it’s a navigation based game according to Tieg. All the characters are vehicles as well, so they wanted to make getting from point A to point B an enjoyable experience. You will be faced with multiple attack scenarios and it should be clear how the action takes place in a smaller arena of combat, but is still very focused on precise movements and getting places quickly, setting up sniper shots, and getting out. The game should feel very mobile.
Taking things one step further, the developers have introduced the concept of viewing transformation as “an indicator of behavioral state change.” What that means is that when you see an enemy, the form they have chosen (vehicle or robot), should tell the player something about thinking on an AI level. By looking at your enemies’ form, you should be able to “read” them and somewhat predict and anticipate their tactics based on how you see them transform. Both Decepticons and Autobots can use the same weapons, and through a new store system, you’ll be able to upgrade those weapons.
High Moon wasn’t quite ready to show off multiplayer but they did give them a look at the character customizer that will be used in the mode. Character customization has been amped up from the previous game, now your torso piece determines what kind of vehicle you are and there are seven other elements (shoulders, arms, wheels, etc) that you can customize for your robot form, and you will unlock more parts via gameplay. Each class has unique parts — the Scout wheels, for instance, won’t appear on other classes. Also, if you’re a fan of chromed-out rides, the slide that lets you decide how shiny you want your character to be should be endless fun.
There’s also an improvement that every fan should love and that’s the addition of more ammo. The team promises that their should be no shortage of bullets this time around. So far it looks like everything is on track and Transformers: Fall Of Cybertron is set to make the franchise respectable again after that whole Dark Of The Moon debacle.