I grabbed the new Transformers game earlier today and gave the first Decepticon campaign level a spin this evening. This is a game that’s specifically meant to target my nostalgia and then attack it for ridiculous effect.
The best thing about it is that this is (so far) a pretty competent game. It’s full of giant robots blasting the crap out of each other, a story about Megatron’s megalomania, takes place on a planet where just about everything transforms, and has some solid fundamentals. It plays basically like a hybrid of Gears of War and Modern Warfare 2 in that it’s a third-person shooter (with no cover mechanic) and is heavy on the action.
Of course, you do have the ability to transform at will between vehicle and giant robot mode, which is half the fun—run into a room, shoot a few fools, then jump into the air and transform in mid-air into a car to zip away and recharge before attacking again.
Then again, all they needed was this trailer, because Peter Cullen as the voice of Optimus Prime could basically have said any kind of dialogue they wanted and all I would hear was “buy this game.” When I hear Optimus, I’m five again.
I haven’t dropped into the multiplayer yet other than during the demo, but it of course has a progression system like most shooters do now (though it tracks each class you can play as separately). And what’s with everything Activision having a Prestige-style system now? Blur had it, too.
What’s great is that it basically ripped most gameplay elements from Gears of War and replaced the Cogs with Transformers. Everything about this game works – the action, the control scheme, the multiplayer.