Read on after the break, and find out why this might be ready for Optimus Prime-time.
When you get dropped into the single-player mode, you'll get taken through a brief tutorial in order to "check your systems out." On the Decepticon side, you'll get Starscream as your trainer, and the Autobots have Ironhide taking you through the paces. All the basic controls like movement, jump, targeting and so on are covered, after which you'll move on to transforming. To transform from robot to vehicle mode, you'll hold down the right trigger and ... keep it held down. That was our main gripe with this game, actually. It was too easy to have your finger pop off that trigger and whoops, you're a robot again. It's particularly aggravating when you're a flying 'former, revert back to aerial mode and have to get your bearings again.
Every character in the game has a primary weapon, a secondary weapon and a special ability. You can toggle your weapon mode on and off by squeezing the left trigger, which will bring up your aiming reticule, and the right trigger fires. For instance, Ratchet has an Energon Multi-Beam as his main weapon, and by hitting the right bumper or R1 you can switch to Sticky Grenades, his secondary offense. His special ability is Combat Repair, which heals nearby friendlies. They've made the special abilities emulate the characters somewhat: Optimus has "Valiant Leader" (he takes damage for you), Megatron has an instant-kill Fusion Arm Cannon and Ironhide can drop an Automated Rocket Turret.
Luxoflux has done a great job with the mutliplayer 4 x 4 battles, which run rings around the single-player campaign. The developers have nailed the scale -- when you have Grindor up in the sky trying to chase you down, you'll be grateful for that ability to turn into a speedy little car and zip away (thanks, Bumblebee!). You won't mind being a small guy vs. a big dude, because you'll have increased speed on your side. Just be sure to stay out of the reach of their weapons.
Ironically, the most improved part of the game are the transformations, which look terrific. If you jump off a building and transform into an auto or a jet on the way down, you'll either hit the ground with wheels screeching, or rocket off into the sky -- pretty thrilling stuff. A couple of the characters, like Sideways, are armed with sniper rifles, allowing you to grab a good vantage point and take a few shots before zooming off to a new spot. Translation: kablam, transform, roll out, transform, shoot again.
We played deathmatch in our sessions (Autobots vs. Decepticons, of course), and Luxoflux promises several other types of multiplayer will be available, including Control Points and some sort of Capture the Flag mode.
Activision and Luxoflux will be out at BotCon this weekend with a playable build of the game available to attendees, so if you're in the SoCal area, transform and roll out.
- Key specs
- Reviews • 18
- Game format Optical disc, Downloadable
- Online features Multiplayer, Voice chat, Video chat, Store, Browser
- Drive capacity 250 GB
- Controller type Wired, Wireless
- Motion controls Accelerometer, Gyroscopic
- Video outputs HDMI (v1.3), RCA / composite
- Released 2012-09-25
Microsoft Xbox One
Microsoft Xbox 360