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Transformers: War For Cybertron

Transformers: War For Cybertron

Transformers: War For Cybertron

Transformers: War for Cybertron is a third-person shooter video game developed by High Moon Studios and published by Activision. It was released in North America on June 22, 2010 and in PAL regions on June 25, 2010 for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. Two portable versions were released for the Nintendo DS, one featuring an Autobot campaign, the other a Decepticon campaign. A game for the Wii called Transformers: Cybertron Adventures was developed by Next Level Games and utilizes the same characters and setting as War for Cybertron. A sequel, Transformers: Fall of Cybertron was released on August 21, 2012 in North America and on August 24 in Europe.

The game takes place on the planet Cybertron, prior to the Transformers arrival on Earth. The Autobots and Decepticons are engaged in a civil war. The game can be played starting from either faction's perspective, but begins chronologically with the Decepticon campaign. The game revolves around the use of a substance known as Dark Energon, which the evil Decepticon leader Megatron believes will allow him to return the planet to what he refers to as a golden age.

War for Cybertron received generally positive reviews from critics. Aggregate websites GameRankings and Metacritic report scores in the mid 70% range across all three platforms. Several reviewers cited it as an improvement over past Transformers games. Critics generally felt that the cooperative and multiplayer versus modes were solid, but cited repetitive visuals in regards to the game's setting.

Transformers: War For Cybertron Plot

War for Cybertron developer High Moon Studios and publisher Activision worked closely with Hasbro to create the design and story for the game. "I want to make the game I've been waiting 25 years to play" said Tieger. The studio brought the concept and idea to Hasbro for approval. It began with a sketch of Bumblebee. "That was that first sketch that we slid across the table to Hasbro and said 'What do you guys think?' And that's where it all started" said Tieger. High Moon presented the idea of setting the game on Cybertron during the Transformers' civil war between the Autobots and Decepticons. Aaron Archer, Senior Design Director for Hasbro, stated of the Cybertron-based setting "that's a really cool place and the early days of that civil war between the Autobots and Decepticons was a story that hadn't really been fleshed out in any format."

Each of the characters were totally redesigned for the game, taking cues from previous iterations from the Transformers lore. "What they've allowed us to do is take a licensed property and treat it like a brand new IP" stated Tieger. The vehicle modes for car-based characters initially consisted of wheels, however the developers found that it crippled gameplay by removing the player's ability to strafe while in vehicle mode. Taking the dilemma to Hasbro, the two companies agreed that characters would turn their wheels down and hover in while in vehicle mode, allowing for more movement. The vehicles would then revert to the traditional wheeled mode while using a character's boost, maintaining what the Transformers license had established with previous canon.

The world of Cybertron was designed in such a way that the Transformers would have a proper scale on their homeworld. "It doesn't make sense that things would be smaller than them in their world," Tieger said, adding "the key character in scale was making their world gigantic and huge." Matt Krystek, Lead Designer at High Moon stated that since the game is not tied to a movie they were able to tell their own story. He cited the G1 universe as the inspiration for the game. Jim Daly, Lead Concept Artist at High Moon also cited the G1 universe as the main inspiration for the design of Cybertron itself, also stating that there were elements from Disney's TRON, Blade Runner, and the Aliens franchise.

Hasbro's Aaron Archer stated the game would be only part of a bigger group of media. "This won't be the only touch point. It's a big place that we're going to build off of." At a BotCon 2010 panel, War for Cybertron Creative Director Matt Tieger stated Activision is currently in talks with Hasbro on creating additional titles. He also added that Hasbro is "considering" expanding the brand further into the realm of video games. Joe Moscone, Senior Account Manager for Hasbro's public relations team, further clarified that War for Cybertron is in the same continuity as the Transformers: Prime animated series and Transformers: Exodus novel, and that this would be the primary continuity going forward. Hasbro has released a toy line based on the War for Cybertron setting. Transforming figures of Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Megatron and Soundwave from the game have been released by Hasbro under the Transformers: Generations banner.

Transformers: War For Cybertron Gameplay

War for Cybertron is played from a third person perspective. Transformers are classified into four main categories, Leader, Soldier, Scientist, and Scout. Each character in the campaign is classified as one of these types, and their weaponry, abilities and vehicle form are largely influenced by their character class. Players can change between forms at will, and each form has unique abilities. While in robot form characters can also collect different weapons, reminiscent of those found in first-person shooters. While in vehicle form each character can boost their speed.

Each campaign level gives the player a choice of three Transformers. The campaign can be played in single-player or cooperatively via online multiplayer, and players can enter or leave the game at any time. If fewer than three players are present, the game's AI controls the remaining playable characters. Cooperative and competitive modes of the game are limited to online play, with no split screen features available. The game levels are designed to allow characters to comfortably navigate and play the game in either mode.

SettingWar for Cybertron is set on the planet Cybertron, prior to the Transformers' contact with the planet Earth. Robotic in nature, each Transformer has the ability to transform from their robot mode to an alternate form, such as a tank or jet. The Transformers are engaged in civil war with one another. A group of evil Transformers form a splinter group separate from the main faction. Known as Decepticons, they follow Megatron, their powerful and ruthless leader. The main faction, known as the Autobots, follow the command of Zeta Prime. Zeta Prime is killed, leaving behind an inexperienced leader, Optimus, who must lead the Autobot forces to prevent Megatron from corrupting the planet, itself a Transformer, with Dark Energon. The Decepticon story is told in the first five chapters of the game, with the Autobot story directly following it. Players may choose to start either campaign first regardless of chronological order.

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