Tuesday, May 29, 2007

My Robo Vision gets the best of me

Alt Meister in NFS:Carbon
While there have been many current era Transformer video games since the Beast Wars game came out on PS1, for some reason the kind of Transformers I like have never been in any US video games. The most I could hope for were incidental 'cameos' in current racing games by cars or trucks that looked like the old Transformers I knew. Back in 2000 there was a racing game for Nintendo64 called Ridge Racer 64. In the desert level there was a bridge that went over a portion of the track and driving across this bridge occasionally there'd be a tractor trailer that looked like Optimus Prime. Every time I'd be racing that track I'd look for Optimus because it was so cool to see him in a video game. The Transformers I grew up with as a kid were still pretty dormant in the US at that time. I thought these incidental cameos were about as close as I'd ever come to seeing Optimus in a video game (besides that old Commodore 64 game).

There's a new TF video game coming out June 19 based on the upcoming Transformers movie and they've gotten Frank Welker and Peter Cullen to do the voices of Megatron and Prime, which is great but I don't care for the movie character designs. I'm not alone on this, either. I was listening to Episode 69 of the Paunch Stevenson show where the hosts Greg and Rob decide that what Activision should do is ignore the movie and base the game off the Generation One cartoon. I agree but I laughed at the idea because come on, how likely would that be?

So I'm reading the description of the Transformers Movie game at Target's website and something caught my eye. Here's a quote:

"Get the Target Exclusive Transformers Videogame with Decoders to Find Hidden Codes Unlocking Exclusive Generation One Skins, Including OPTIMUS PRIME"

And I'm thinking, HOLY CRAP! Optimus Prime as I knew him is going to be in this game! But Target makes it seem as if the G1 skins are only unlockable in their exclusive "Robo Vision" version. I thought, damnit, I already preordered this from GameStop. But then I did some more research on the game and found this interview with the game's executive producer. He states "we have several unlockable characters across our portfolio... that give players the chance to play with characters from Generation 1 that are not in the film." Now he's not just talking about the version on sale at Target, he's talking about the game in general. So Target can go screw themselves if they're trying to make it look like only their version will have the G1 skins.

There will also be an exclusive "Cybertron" edition of the game for XBox owners. The description says this version will feature a "Bonus code to unlock two ‘Cybertron’ levels, one for each side in the game (Autobot and Decepticon)". I wonder if that's just a marketing snow job just like what Target's trying to do. Now of course I can't deny the Cybertron edition will have exclusive extras like the bonus content disc, but the way they word the hype on the Cybertron levels makes me think the only thing exclusive regarding the extra levels is the code they supply to unlock them. I think it's possible that ALL the console versions of this game have the cybertron levels and the only thing exclusive to the XBox is that they give you the code right off the bat.

I'm really kind of pissed off at all the marketing BS and I wished Activision would just come out and say what the hell I can expect for my money when I buy the PS3 version. But if I'm decoding all this right, I'm going to be able to play as the original Peter Cullen Prime and Frank Welker Megatron fighting it out on Cybertron regardless of what platform version I buy. I don't need Robo Vision to see how that's going to kick all sorts of robot ass.


Heavyarms said...

Hmmmm, I wonder how exactly you'd be able to play as G1 Megatron, since the game features "free roaming action." Do you just fall to the ground and wait for someone to come pick you up when you turn into a P-38? Of course, if it IS true that you can play as their G1 incarnation, that'd give me reason to consider getting a PS3.

What'd you think of the Armada game? The point where you get through the Tidal Wave level and he transforms and you realize now you gotta tackle that big behemoth is one of my favorite all time video game moments.

Evil King Macrocranios said...

I am interested in what way you'll play as G1 Prime, since from what I understand it's movie Prime guiding the player and talking to them one on one. I don't know if the player character gets many lines but it would be fantastic if they did, especially if it's Prime or Megatron.

I wouldn't buy a PS3 just for this game. If this game is the deciding factor in your purchase of a next gen console, I'd say get the XBox 360 elite. The extras in the Cybertron edition are probably worth it.

I think the Armada game is the reigning king of Transformer video games. I don't honestly expect that this movie game will dethrone it. Funny how even after the upcoming movie, my favorite TF game is probably going to be the one with the voices of Gary Chalk and David Kaye in the roles of Prime and Megatron.

Heavyarms said...

Thinking more about getting a Wii. Between work and kids and little plastic toys, I don't have the time to sit down and play a game for 6 hours on end like I used to (I still have not finished Metal Gear Solid 4 or GTA: San Andreas). The Wii seems more like a pick up and play system.

I'm a G1 fanboy through and through, but I met Gary Chalk last year and told him that, as far as I was concerned, HE was the voice of Optimus Prime. Damn, that Armada game is hard, though.

Rob said...

Heavyarms, I disagree. Peter Cullen is Optimus Prime, no contest. I'm thinking more about getting a Wii, too. My brother has one and it's a lot of fun, plus it has the Virtual Console. As for a G1 Transformers video game, Megatron would float around in gun mode. That might look stupid, but what other options are there?

Evil King, as you've written, Greg and I think the new movie character designs are horrendous. Even the new movie toys look stupid. Optimus Prime and Megatron should not look like skeletons. Despite all of our bashing, will we see the movie in July? *sigh* Yes.

Evil King Macrocranios said...

If G1 Megatron is in the game as a big floating gun I'll buy two copies.

Heavyarms said...

Evil King, thought you might find this of interest. Atom, one of the guys over at CollectionDX, was flown by Activision out to Santa Monica to take a look at the new movie game. They flew out a couple of writers from various fan sites as a thank you.



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