As a rule, movie tie-in video games are abysmal. Made with too little time and not enough polish, they exist primarily to fleece more money out of the movie-going public, to experience the movie’s story a second time. (Toy Story 3 stands as an exception to this rule, as its game was, by all accounts, rather fantastic.)
The first two Transformers games based on Michael Bay’s movies were just awful. But there may be cause to hope over the tie-in for the Transformers: Dark of the Moon game (I’m still hating that title). What’s the cause for this sudden optimism? Unlike the first two games, which were made by TT Games and Luxoflux respectively, this new one is being made by High Moon Studios — the developer behind last year’s excellent Transformers: War for Cybertron. While not perfect, War for Cybertron showed that High Moon has a real love for these characters and their world, and it got the best reviews of any Transformers game ever.
Now, the odds are against High Moon besting itself with Dark of the Moon, since once again we have a game that’s been given far too short a development life. But the press release sent out today by distributor Activision makes it sound like High Moon is at least trying to make the game worthwhile.
High Moon has created a new gameplay mode for this new game called “Stealth Force,” which represents a hybrid between robot mode and vehicle mode. Why it’s called Stealth Force, I have no idea, because as you can see Bumblebee model it in the trailer above, there’s nothing whatsoever stealthy about it. It looks more like “battle tank” mode to me.
The Dark of the Moon game also has the distinction of introducing robot characters that are new to the Michaelbayverse, including the movie’s big bad, Shockwave. High Moon’s game features a storyline that serves as a prologue to the events in the movie, so at least it’s not just a regurgitation of the film, right?
Do we dare hope for a good game?
You can find out more about the game at transformersgame.com. Here are the game’s first screenshots.