(Zavian Sildra blogs about video games. Catch his regular Blog at 1up.com

Return to Cybertron

"It's a sequel!  RUN!"

After getting back into some online multiplayer recently with Transformers: The War for Cybertron, it got me thinking... what additions to the impending sequel would really be impressive?  Here's what I'd like to see in the next game (in no particular order of awesomeness, or necessity):

New worlds.  Cybertron was excellent; now let's see something else.  Earth is fairly obvious, and--done right--could provide the backdrop for some great firefights.  But why only Earth?  Maybe expand the scope a bit: how about the moon?  Mars?  Or even crazier, maybe hanging in the atmospheres of gas giants like Jupiter or Saturn, or circling dangerously close to the surface of the sun?  If we're gonna be in our "local" solar system, I'd like to see creativity, something with real "wow" factor.  Of course, they could instead go the other route, and utilize any of the other alien worlds in the Transformers mythos, like Nebulos or Quintessa.

Character-specific powers.  Skywarp's teleport?  Mirage's invisibility?  I can accept the character abilities being rendered generic in the first run, but for a sequel I expect better.  I'm sure it could be made to work without sacrificing play balance, and having more ways to play would only increase the depth of the experience (and provide very entertaining fan-service).  Imagine how'd you approach a level with Hound's holograms, Bombshell's cerebro-shells, or Rumble's--well, er--rumbling.

Improved multiplayer/character creation options.  I'd like to see some greater flexibility in online (and local, actually) multiplayer, like the ability to throw in AI-controlled 'bots, and construct your own custom battle scenarios.  Add to that the ability to build customized characters piece by piece (rather than just recoloring existing in-game models, though that has its own special place in Transformers tradition) and you've got some really robust multiplayer options.  The ability to take a custom character into the campaign mode would be nice, too (or exclusive/bonus characters as well--not being able to use Shockwave or Jazz in campaign mode is pretty lame, really).

Different character styles/classes.  There's such huge variety in the Transformers universe, so let's see some more of it in the next game.  Micromasters, Headmasters, Pretenders, even Beast-Machines--let's try 'em out.  Combiner teams need to make an appearance, at least as an enemy.  If they could make a playable combiner team work, I'd be really impressed.  Five-player gestalt multiplayer?  That would be something!

Unicron.  OK--he's been done to death (and yet won't ever stay dead), but honestly--playing as part of a massive army of robots battling Unicron as he devours your world... or facing him alone as part of a desperate Matrix-powered last stand... that's pretty ambitious staging for a video game, and would be a blast to play.  He hungers!

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