The Next Transformers Game Crosses Continuity Lines. I'm Scared.

The Next Transformers Game Crosses Continuity Lines. I'm Scared.

Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark is not just a sequel to Activision's lovely War for/Fall of Cybertron games or a Michael Bay-flavoured movie tie-in. It's both, and that scares the spark out of me.

Making a good Transformers video game is hard, at least I assume this is the case, because the majority of attempts over the past decade have been pretty abysmal. Let's break them down.

Good Transformers Video Games

  • Transformers (PlayStation 2 — 2004 — Melbourne House)
  • Transformers: War For Cybertron (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC — 2010 — High Moon Studios)
  • Transformers: Fall of Cybertron (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC — 2012 — High Moon Studios)

Bad Transformers Video Games

  • Transformers: The Game (Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PC Wii — 2007 — Traveller's Tales)
  • Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PC, Wii — 2009 — Multiple Developers)
  • Transformers: Cybertron Adventures (Wii — 2010 — Next Level Games)
  • Transformers: Dark of the Moon (Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 — 2011 — High Moon Studios)
  • Transformers Prime — The Game (Wii, Wii U — 2012 — Nowpro)

That's not counting portable editions (generally horrible) or mobile games (there was that one ok one). The industry's track record with Transformers video games is not good.

Looking at this list, Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark (we're not even trying with the subtitles anymore) has one thing going for it — it features characters and settings from High Moon Studios' recent success stories. That's one good thing.

The Next Transformers Game Crosses Continuity Lines. I'm Scared.

One good thing that is quickly negated by the fact that High Moon Studios isn't developing this game. Even if it was, the studio still managed to make a mess of the Dark of the Moon tie-in from 2011, and half of this game is movie-based.

No matter now, as Austin-based Edge of Reality is handling development for the Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, PC and Wii U versions of Rise of the Dark Spark. Looking over the studio's pedigree, they've done some ports of Tony Hawk Pro Skater for the Nintendo 64, Shark Tale and Over the Hedge movie games, more ports — oh, they worked on the PlayStation 3 version of Mass Effect. Earlier this month the studio released a free-to-play shooter called Loadout on Steam.

They've done some fine work, but there's not enough there to ease my worries.

I really should be excited about two Transformers universes colliding — I suppose in a way I am. I've not much love for the Michael Bay-verse, but I am incredibly interested to see how Edge of Reality ties the two together — what will High Moon's G1-flavored bots think of Bay's insectoid aliens machines? It's a situation bursting with narrative possibilities. It's got the compelling progression-based multiplayer of the Cybertron games, including the amazing Escalation horde mode. And hey, it looks like Edge of Reality knows how to develop for PC, unlike some studios (High Moon) I could name.

And who knows? If Transformers: Verb of the Adjective Noun takes off, it could lead to more universe-hopping. Let's get some Beast Wars up in this business.

The Next Transformers Game Crosses Continuity Lines. I'm Scared.

The one glimmer of hope in this new game announcement comes from the 3DS side of the fence. Activision tells me the version of the game for Nintendo's handheld will be a tactical role-playing game developed by WayForward Technologies, the modern masters of 2D gaming. There are so many words in that last sentence that make me happy. Almost enough to soothe my troubled heart.

Almost. I am still worried about Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark. At least I am not alone. We've finally found common ground, frowny-face Optimus.

The Next Transformers Game Crosses Continuity Lines. I'm Scared.

Comments

    Don't want this at all. The whole appeal of the War for Cybertron and Fall of Cybertron games is that they were based off the continuity of the original series and the comics and had absolutely nothing to do with the godawful Bayformers stuff.

      Like it or not, the post 2010 Hasbro "Aligned" continuity makes those games prequels to the Transformers: Prime cartoon rather than G1.

      There are too many characters that appear in the War and Fall of Cybertron games to realistically say it's the true prequel to Gen 1 (since many characters should not even be BUILT until a ways through series 1, gen 1).

      But they are very good games regardless and have the tranformers "feel" as it were.

    Is there actually any information about if it actually is a cross-over between both continuities - and if so, how exactly that's going to work?
    So far all Kotaku's shown is a trailer that didn't say much but made it seem like a Bayformers tie-in with some G1-style designs stuck in it and this article which seems to be based completely off assumptions... Am I missing something?

    Wow, they killed the franchise before they really announced it. This really feels like the Batman Arkham series again.

    Why cant they just make a game based on the G1 characters. Grimlock and the rest of the Dinobots would so own. If they did make a G1 game they could give the Dinobots something they lacked in the original animated series...a combiner form. But then they would be sooooo op its not funny lol.

      The world isn't ready for combined Dinobots, it'd probably cause a blackhole of awesome that'd destroy the universe.

      They briefly did a dinobot combiner: http://tfwiki.net/wiki/Beast_(G1)

    Blame Hasbro - it's been mentioned before that Hasbro's being trying to establish an 'official continuity' - bloody idiots

    I was really hoping for a High Moon video game version of the 1986 movie - complete with cel-shading

    Imagine multiplayer battled based on some of the skirmishes in that film!

      The speck of a positive is that HM is working on an unannounced game. It still could be a full WfC/FoC styled game.

    I loved war and fall of cybertron and i was so looking forward to a third installment.

    now we get bayformers and a different studio. So disappointing.

Join the discussion!