Saturday, April 13, 2024

‘Transformers War For Cybertron’ is power struggle

Jonas Ward

Imagine a world encrusted with layers of metal and grime: A sentient robotic race amidst a nonsensical war over power and control. Enemies who were once allies kill each other because of past gripes that fuzed over into madness. “Transformers War for Cybertron” is the original, quintessential Transformers story prior to their arrival on earth. Developed by Highmoon Studios originally for the PS3 in 2010, “Transformers War for Cybertron” is a galactic ride full of energy and cannon fodder. 

Buckle up, because the story for “Transformers War for Cybertron” is sure to rev engines. There are two campaigns for this game. The do-gooders’ Autobot campaign and the tyranny fueled Decepticon campaign. Players can choose to play either campaign, which starts at different intervals throughout the story. Both of the campaigns intertwine with a story that is awesome in scale. 

In the middle of a civil war, players will start the story with three Autobots by the names of Optimus, Bumblebee and Ratchet. They are on a mission to figure out the fate of their commander in chief Zeta Prime, who had gone missing in the middle of a battle. Later in the mission, the trio discovers that their leader, Zeta Prime had been bested and killed in battle by the evil Decepticon leader Megatron. Megatron is completely mad, he was destined for glory and fame as a young gladiator, but shunned because of his self centered and violent tendencies. He started an uprising to completely take over their home planet of Cybetron and cleanse it for himself and his lunatic followers.  

After the death of Zeta Prime is made public to the Autobot forces, they decide to dub Optimus their new commander in chief with the Prime title. Optimus originally was a bookkeeper drafted into the war when his home city of Iacon was bombed and destroyed. He was a footsoldier who learned to become a leader during troubling times. 

Later in the story, Megatron and his army infiltrated an abandoned air base protected by the rogue scientist Starscream. Megatron and his army were there to obtain a highly volatile form of energy called Dark Energon. Megatron’s goal was to harness this energy to give him and his army the upperhand in the war he created. Starscream’s protectors could only do so much to keep Megatron and his army at bay from the Dark Energon he had been protecting for so long.

Nearly all of Starscream’s protectors were killed by Megatron’s forces except for his two identical twin brothers named Skywarp and Thundercracker who are also rogues. The Starscream trio is known across the universe as the Seekers. Megatron was able to brainwash the trio into joining his Decepticon army after instilling fear because he noticed that Starscream was a valuable scientist. Later in the story, players realize that Starscream  never wanted to join Megatron’s army. Starscream went back to his rogue ways later trying to defeat Megatron himself to take over his army for his own intentions. Starscream is easily one of the most interesting characters in the whole game with tremendous character development.  

Word was spread to the Autobot forces about Megatron’s raid for dark energon on Starscream’s air base. An Autobot flight soldier named Jetfire broke the news to Optimus Prime warning him that Megatron had attained a resource that was able to power weapons bigger than they can imagine. Optimus Prime and his allies decided that they needed to do something to help them in their favor. So they decided to travel underground on their planet to awaken an ancient Autobot protector named Omega Supreme. Omega Supreme is the gatekeeper to the planet’s core. He is a ginormous mountain sized being who has seen his fair share of battles protecting the core of the planet. Megatron ironically had the same idea. This was a notable point in the story and the campaign really takes off from here.  

Megatron and his army were able to beat the autobots to Omega Supreme, corrupting him with the dark energon and  making him extremely weak. The Decepticon army later kidnapped the giant Omega Supreme in an attempt to hide him from the Autobots. While the Autobots were busy trying to rescue Omega Supreme, noticing he may be the only one able to help them win the war, Megatron was racing to the planet’s core.  

After this, the story climaxes into a whole string of events that are just too juicy to spoil for future players. The story of “Transformers War for Cybertron” is easily one of the best ever devised for a third-person fantasy video game. It keeps players wanting to know what happens step by step. It’s gripping, dark and intense. It makes players relate to the characters and the struggles they must endure. 

Upon its original release, fans have been jumping out of their seats for Highmoon Studios. Previous attempts by other developers to produce a Transformers game this substantial were subpar because of graphics technology. “Transformers War for Cybertron” has fantastic graphics. Each character has their own movements, body language and interesting colors. The scenescape of their planet is some of the best fantasy landscapes ever created. Darks, lights and interactive materials are everywhere for players. Movements are amazing while watching characters morph into different vehicles to travel which is easily one of the most rewarding parts of this game. The sounds the player will hear are absolutely incredible. They are extremely sci-fi and entertaining while playing through the story. 

The controls and the gameplay are traditional for this third-person video game. The gameplay is fluid, full of action, guns, highspeeds and puzzles. While embarking on these journeys, the controls are what make it all at the end. The characters are easy to maneuver while walking, flying and driving. Fighting is one of the main parts in this game, mostly done with different types of guns. Aiming at enemies through an aligned crosshair is easy for the most part, unless the enemies are shooting back. All of these factors are bunched up into a really great and rewarding playing experience for anybody. 

If players are looking for a game that is incredibly underrated in the Playstation 3 library, “Transformers War for Cybertron” is an extremely good title worth sourcing. The story, gameplay and even online multiplayer aspects make it entertaining. Not only was “Transformers War for Cybertron” successful when it came out, the game spawned two other sequels and also a popular TV adaptation. A Netflix original titled “Transformers: War for Cybertron Trilogy” is now in its third season. The show gained a 95% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, which is spectacular for a show based on a video game. 

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