2012-08-03

Transformers: Fall of Cybertron – Impressions From The Demo

by Yo Snyder

The demo for Transformers: Fall of Cybertron is now available
on Xbox Live and PSN, and it’s actually a pretty thorough one. Not only
do you get to try out a couple levels from the single player campaign,
one as Bumblebee and one as the Decepticon Vortex, but you can also try
out the multiplayer and the new “build your own Transformer” feature.
We’ll take more about the multiplayer in another update soon, but for
right now, we just wanted to share some quick thoughts on the two
single-player levels you can test out in the demo.

The Autobot
level with Bumblebee serves more as a tutorial than anything else, and
obviously comes early in the game. You’ll learn the basics for controls
and some of the nifty things you can do as a transforming robot. While
not exactly a cover-based game in the sense that you’ll be “sticking” to
cover like in Ghost Recon or Gears of War, making use of cover is
important, and one of the nice additions is the ability to switch which
arms your weapons are on. 

The Decepticon level with Vortex gives
us a sense of the vertical and airborne gameplay. The levels are bigger
and more open, with an early section being an on-rails flying segment
that transitions into more traditional run and gun and then opens up
into a large area where you can have the choice to attack on the ground
or take to the air. Flight controls are easy to transition to, and a
nice thing about the game is it gives you plenty of options to customize
controls to your liking. Taking to the air is a nice change of pace
from running around or even just driving, and the moments where you can
transition back and forth from air and ground during combat are a lot of
fun.

As for some of our general impressions; the combat is a lot
fun,  and it’s fast and fluid. There seems to be a better mix of melee
and ranged combat this time around, or at least I found more moments to
combine the two more naturally. There appears to be plenty of
opportunities to upgrade and customize characters, which is always a lot
of fun. The levels were nicely paced, giving you moments to play both
in robot and vehicle form. The environments still feel a bit too
similar, but then, on a giant robotic planet, it’s hard to get away from
everything looking metallic and, well, robotic.

All in all, the
demo really gave me a positive feeling about the single player campaign.
The last game was fun, but quickly felt very samey. The fact that there
will be more options for customizing weapons, loadouts and perks gives
me hope that the “blast away at everything in sight in slight different
looking robotic corridors” gameplay of the last game will be a bit more
diverse this time around, especially if there are more of those bigger
levels that allow you fight both on land and in the air, whichever you
prefer.

The game looks great, definitely has that Transformers
feel, it’s fun to play, and it’s always cool to be a huge, transforming
robot. So if the levels can keep things interesting, Transformers: Fall of Cybertron
looks as though it can be one of those sequels that takes the solid
foundation of the first game and then build something better. Again,
we’ll have our impressions from the multiplayer portion of the demo
soon, and look for Fall of Cybertron later this month (August 21st to be precise).