An evening of multiplayer with Transformers: Fall of Cybertron

Comic-Con 2012: Maxwell and Caro banter about their time with three of the multiplayer modes in Transformers: Fall of Cybertron.

Michael Bay's trilogy of budget-busting Transformers movies may have come and gone, but developer High Moon Studios is still keeping the spirit of the original cartoon series alive with Transformers: Fall of Cybertron. Earlier in the year we got the chance to see a sampling of the game's single-player mode, which emphasized the different mission types each character will feature. Now, on the eve of this year's San Diego Comic-Con, Maxwell and Caro got the chance to go hands-on for the first time with its multiplayer modes.

Caro I started off in Conquest mode. This was a team-based mode in which you earn points by capturing and holding command nodes. I spent a lot of time holding down nodes for my team and not seeing any enemies; but when they did approach me, I found that the balanced destroyer class--which was a bit sturdier than an infiltrator and more agile than the tank-like titan--served me well. I was pretty effective at keeping filthy Decepticons away from our sweet, sweet command points, and my team ultimately won the match.

Maxwell While you were off monkeying around with your capture points, Caro, I was playing tried-and-true Team Deathmatch. As a semi-unprofessional medic player in Team Fortress 2, I opted to play the scientist class exclusively during my session. Similar to TF2’s medic, this class can fire a healing beam at allies to restore their life, but unlike in TF2, it can still fire your weapon while using the beam--simply toggle the beam on or off and go about your shooting. The class itself is pretty weak, and its weapons don't pack as much of a punch, so working in concert with a teammate was the best option during my play session.

Caro I didn't spend too much time playing the multiplayer in War for Cybertron, but my immediate feeling was that this feels quite similar. On the plus side, transforming smoothly from a robot into a vehicle and speeding around the battlefield in vehicle form feels great. On the other hand, despite some powerful-looking melee attacks, combat in robot form doesn't have quite the sense of impact I would like. But the four classes offer a good variety of options for players, and I think that fighting as a team that understands the strengths and weaknesses of each class and works together well could be great.

Also, Matt Tieger from High Moon Studios mentioned that Dinobots and Insecticons will eventually be playable in multiplayer. He described this as being part of their "DLC strategy," so it sounds like you'll have to pay for this option, but if integrated well, it could bring more variety to the game's class dynamics.

Maxwell For me, the moment-to-moment combat in the competitive multiplayer modes felt very slow and forgiving compared to other third-person shooters. These are not inherently negative things; in fact, I felt the slower pace helped sell the fact that I was playing as a giant mechanical robot. This deliberate pace also meant that I was getting hit, a lot. The design compensated for this by giving each class a fair amount of health compared to other games, and it certainly took more than a few rounds to bring an enemy down.

Giancarlo HEY GUYS! I PLAYED THE SINGLE-PLAYER PART! IT HAD BUMBLEBEE FIGHTING HIS WAY THROUGH THE AUTOBOT ARK, BUT MEGATRON WAS BLOWING IT UP. SO CRAZY! THEN, I PLAYED AS A DECEPTICON THAT WAS HELPING STARSCREAM DIVERT ENERGON! STARSCREAM IS SUCH A TURD. DO YOU GUYS WANT TO SEE MY LASERDISC OF TRANSFORMERS: THE MOVIE?

Caro Ahem, we then played the co-op mode, called Escalation. In this mode, you play as one of four established characters, each of whom has a unique ability, and you need to work together to effectively fend off the waves of enemy Transformers who attack you. I have a soft spot for Bumblebee, so I selected him. His ability is to drop items that replenish his teammates' ammo supplies.

Maxwell Once Escalation started I was seemingly assigned to play as Optimus Prime at random. This character is meant to be the tank of the group. He has a lot of health and can hold up a shield in front of himself to block incoming attacks. In theory, while Optimus takes a beating using his shield, his teammates can provide fire support from behind. Or, in this case, his teammates just run around and kill the first thing that wanders into view. I'm looking at you, Caro!

Caro Unfortunately, at the exact moment the match started, a guy tripped over the wire connecting my headset to the output and disconnected it, so I wasn't able to communicate with my teammates. But I could still tell that this mode is very much a traditional horde mode. The waves started off being made up of small numbers of weak enemies, but as we continued fighting the good fight, enemies became both more numerous and more powerful.

Maxwell As we were racking up the kills, we were also awarded money to spend on various upgrades littered throughout the map. Some of these upgrades came in the form of basic ammo or health packs, new weapons and items, and environmental traps to help thin the AI hordes. The most powerful of these upgrades--such as an airstrike station--can be paid in increments by any member of the team. Once the goal had been reached we could all enjoy the rewards. Having a variety of unique upgrade types will help make each cooperative map feel distinct in ways other than layout.

Caro I still wish that the action had a greater sense of impact, but I think the option to play as recognizable characters like Optimus and Bumblebee in multiplayer is promising, and I'm looking forward to seeing how some of those more powerful options, like the airstrike station, can change things up.

Our brief time with Fall of Cybertron made us hopeful in some ways and apprehensive in others. Most of all, it left us wanting more time with the game--more time to learn how to make effective use of each class, more time to practice working effectively as a team, and most of all, more time to find a goofy-looking head for our custom Destroyer-class Transformer. Thankfully, we won't have to wait too long; Fall of Cybertron is scheduled for release on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC this August.

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Discussion

44 comments
qnqr
qnqr

maybe its a stupid Q but can u multiplay on different platforms?

friend of mine has it on xbox and im about to get it on pc..

 

ty in advance :D

alphared1
alphared1

Played the demo.  Freaking awesome.  Obviously it does not feel like like most shooters.  Why should it?  This is a sci-fi action game featuring robots, not some cliched 10th version of a middle-eastern war game.  SO WHAT if it doesn't feel like your average shooter game? - I say GOOD!  This game fresh and a whole lot of fun. 

MegaPyroFlame
MegaPyroFlame

The map looks like a re-skin of Complex from WFC.  That was my favorite map, so I'm okay with this.

mred1289
mred1289

anyone ever selected a solider with like 7 blocks of health and get killed by a scientist in a shootout? god i really hope they fixed this and made it more balanced...i wanna have fun while playing a game,i dont wanna have to scream at the tv and say to myself why the hell dident i kill this guy when A: i have more health and B: i started shooting at him and hitting him way before he even noticed me and still die other then that it looks great 

1234ritchie
1234ritchie

Looks very similar... As much as I loved the WFC multiplayer, I can't help feel this is almost idenitcal.

 

That being said I'm glad they have expanded the customisation, one thing I felt was lacking! Still gonna buy it, just hope I'm not let down!

Tekken312
Tekken312

LOL at Giancarlo. Lay off the Redbull, dude.

jack00
jack00

This looks the exact samething as the multiplayer of War for cybertron, which sucked big time.

diablonn
diablonn

Have to say the sound is just awesome!!!!

Bgrngod
Bgrngod

The opening paragraph in this article made me laugh.  The "spirit" of the Bay movies?  Are you kidding?

Draco416
Draco416

Loved WFC, the only thing was that the hit detection was seriously unbalanced. Hopefully they'll adjust it in this one. Can't wait for this, Escalation day one for me!

Techn1c4l
Techn1c4l

Please don't screw it with lag just like the previous game.

Blazeingdragin
Blazeingdragin

U should be able to fully mod ur bot just like u would a gun in another shooter if they make a modding system with the depth that it should have i'm definitely getting this.

ccintron83
ccintron83

I really hope to see some kind of a brutal melee finisher incorporated into this game. Just to see how all those wires and sparks would look like as oil leaking out as blood in this game similar to the movies would add to the effect for me of how brutal this war really is. 

LoganWesker
LoganWesker

never really played multi..just don't pull a gears of war 3 and ruin your signature mode; don't ruin escalation mode

BludshedX
BludshedX

 @jack00 looks like every other multiplayer third and first person shooter to me

zerooo0
zerooo0

 @jack00 Obviously you didnt know how to handle War for Cybertron Multiplayer then.

RetroSEAL
RetroSEAL

 @Bgrngod that might have been would he meant, but i think by spirit, he meant the original transformers. That's how it sounded to me, because he dismissed the Michael Bay-ness in the first line, and then said keeping it alive with the spirit of the series.

Stufry
Stufry

This just goes to show that these reviewers do not know what they are talking about. Half Moon Studios was trying to work off the source material (Hasbro inspired cartoon series 1984-87) Guess we can't all be fanboys! ;-) @Bgrngod

Alucard_Prime
Alucard_Prime

 @Techn1c4l Too late for that. This game doesn't use dedicated servers, meaning the host is just another player. So I believe the online connectivity will be very similar to the first game, which is luck of the draw basically. The only thing that seems to have improved now is the host migration feature they added, so at least if the host quits it won't end the match. Still getting this game day 1, campaign looks great. 

mred1289
mred1289

 @PDXmauler97 yea that is true then again in other mutliplayers evry1 has the same health ya know,this one well you get the point

PDXmauler97
PDXmauler97

 @BludshedX Hmm. Didn't know a lot of third person shooters had giant robots duking it out with eachother. As for first persons, what part of this reminds you of COD, MoH, and BF?

carolynmichelle
carolynmichelle moderator staff

 @RetroSEAL That's right. The "series" referred to at the end of the sentence wasn't meant to be the Michael Bay series. (As a die-hard Transformers fan from back in the day, it's the celebration of the original Transformers spirit in these games that makes me want to love them.) Sorry that wasn't clear; we've tweaked the sentence to reflect that. Thanks, all! 

WolfGrey
WolfGrey

 @RetroSEAL I think honestly to keep away confusion they simply shouldn't of mentioned Micheal Bay at all. Such a piece of crap director.Gave transformers a terrible image and then is going after TMNT next.Turtles...from space...I just want to end him.I swear he gonna destroy every childhood franchise out there.

 

At least we have Half Moon Studios To keep transformer's image intact.

Giancarlo
Giancarlo moderator

 @Stufry Perhaps you missed my paragraph will the all caps.

WolfGrey
WolfGrey

 @Stufry More like i guess we can't all have some taste.Because anyone who likes all 3 movies has none.

WolfGrey
WolfGrey

 @Alucard_Prime I solved this issue with DMX hosting.As long as the host doesn't quit, i have a perfect connection and no lag.

PDXmauler97
PDXmauler97

 @mred1289 I didn't play WFC, but games with different health systems make it way more strategic and fun. It keeps it from being the fastest one to press a button wins.

william5000
william5000

@carolynmichelle you cant heal what you've Killed! a life for a life' the whole thing has to be re-made from scratch.

WolfGrey
WolfGrey

 @carolynmichelle Though i really do appreciate that you changed it to have the original cartoon series referenced. Much better.

 

Sorry if was being a pain in the butt XD

WolfGrey
WolfGrey

 @carolynmichelle Yes but regardless the wording wasn't done well and honestly it is more like a old injury coming back than anything else.Any time most people think of transformers nowadays the whole you get reminded of the micheal bay crap.Actually saying it is just adding lemon juice to the paper cut, therefore not needed.

 

I(like many others) simply want to forget that those movies ever happened as they were an insult to the transformer name and many people's childhoods.Now he is doing even WORSE with TMNT.We REALLY don't need to be reminded.

 

You however could of made the beginning of the article rather pleasant by omitting his work and simply changing it to a reference to the generation 1 series.These games are geared towards those fans anyway so it would make a lot more sense for an article that is based on the multiplayer of a game that is honoring that generation of transformers no?

 

I am just simply stating what makes sense.That is all.A simple edit or change of one sentence gives the beginning of the article a completely different feel when you read it. True?

carolynmichelle
carolynmichelle moderator staff

 @WolfGrey Look, I don't like it any more than you do, but the Michael Bay movies happened. That's the reality we, as Transformers fans, have to deal with. It's a painful truth, but it's a truth nonetheless, and only after we accept it can the healing begin.

WolfGrey
WolfGrey

 @carolynmichelle Sorry for another reply, ut if you simply put original in front of 'series' then you would instafix your mistake.Though having Micheal Bay mentioned at all is asking for people to argue and be annoyed int he comments.Micheal Bay ticks A LOT of fans off.

WolfGrey
WolfGrey

 @carolynmichelle Though you should just completely omit saying micheal bay at all, still doesn't sound right...

WolfGrey
WolfGrey

 @carolynmichelle Thank you very much for doing so! Did not expect that. Sorry we old transformers fans get a little crazy about that stuff. XD

 

Once again thank you!

william5000
william5000

dude!!!!!!!!! you said it all, i was trying to tell someone who pretended to have watched the 80s series that dark side micheal bay DESTROYED one of the most significant part of my childhood in. a good thing Stan Lee is overseeing whats going on in Marvel movies Phewww...