Transformers: War for Cybertron is a third-person shooter combat game and one of the several War for Cybertron video games. It was developed by High Moon Studios and published by Activision. It is the first piece of media set in the Aligned continuity family in the early days of Cybertronian war. and would later be followed up by Fall of Cybertron.
Chapter I: Dark Energon
It is the waning days of the Great War on Cybertron before the Transformers come to Earth. Megatron, genuinely believing a caste system will bring Cybertron back to its Golden Age, is researching a dangerous power source known as Dark Energon to fuel his conquest of the planet. Megatron discovers that the factory that produces Dark Energon is guarded by a neutral army led by Starscream, and he leads an attack on the station. After his ship crashes into the hull of the station, Megatron, Brawl and Barricade defeat Starscream's army and harness the power of the Dark Energon. Cornered, Starscream tells Megatron that he's the only one who knows how to make more of the energon and that he will help the Decepticon leader if Megatron takes him into his army. Megatron reluctantly agrees to this. Doing this also causes Jetfire to lose trust in Starscream and warn Zeta Prime of their ambitions.
In Exodus Chapters 18–19, Megatron laid claim to Trypticon Station and the Dark Energon contained within. By this point in the war, however, Starscream was already a full member of the Decepticon army. The Dark Energon was his trump card in case he ever chose to betray Megatron to the Autobots. The taking of Trypticon Station happened largely behind the scenes in the novel, without Starscream actively defending it—Megatron took advantage of a rare absence of Starscream from the station to make it his own. He returned from an errand to find his loyal pack of Decepticons brutalized by Megatron's gladiators, and his power base usurped.
Chapter II: Fuel of War
Megatron sends the Seekers to reactivate the ancient Energon Bridge that will produce new Dark Energon. After encountering Autobot security probes, strange jellyfish-like life forms, and fighting legions of Autobot defenders, they succeed. They then start the assault on Iacon.
In Exodus Chapter 22, Starscream and his Seekers reactivate the Geosynchronous Energon Bridge to help Megatron conduct Energon from Cybertron's core to Trypticon Station. The events are basically the same as the game.
Chapter III: Iacon Destroyed
With his new powers, Megatron takes the fight straight to the Autobots' capital city. While Starscream and Brawl lead the main attack on the city, Megatron takes Soundwave and Breakdown on a flanking attack to recover the Omega Key, which will allow him to access the core of the planet. Arriving at the key's holding place, the Decepticons learn that the Autobot leader Zeta Prime has taken it to keep it safe. The team regroup with Brawl and Starscream, and use Dark Energon bombers to eliminate the remaining Autobots before storming the building in which Zeta Prime is waiting. Megatron defeats the Autobot leader, stealing the Omega Key and punching a hole in his chest. Zeta reveals that the key Megatron has just stolen only activates the real Omega Key, and that soon it will find him. Suddenly a huge ship awakens and takes off. This is the Autobots' last line of defense.
In Exodus Chapters 24–27, Megatron led a group of Decepticons to capture the Code Key of Justice while Starscream acquired the Code Key of Power. Together, the two could access the Plasma Energy Chamber. He was confronted with Sentinel Prime at the end, but only because the Prime had been Starscream's prisoner up until that point, and the Seeker commander had released Sentinel to delay Megatron. After defeating Sentinel Prime in personal combat (no holographic death rooms), Megatron found the Key inside Sentinel's body. At that moment, Teletraan-1 reactivated Omega Supreme to protect the Plasma Energy Chamber from Megatron, at Starscream's secret behest.
Chapter IV: Death of Hope
- Characters available: Megatron, Soundwave, Breakdown
- Boss: Omega Supreme (Vehicle mode)
An unknown amount of time later, Megatron is commanding his ship in search of the "Omega Key." The ship is suddenly attacked by Omega Supreme, who shoots them out of the sky, causing them to crash-land in Iacon. Megatron, Soundwave and Breakdown began a desperate retreat from Omega Supreme's attack and take cover in a large tower. Once inside, the group hear Starscream announce that Megatron is dead and that he is taking command of the Decepticons (surprise!). Enraged but unable to make any outside contact, Megatron leads his forces through the city, dodging attacks from Omega Supreme while searching for a way to fight him. Soundwave discovers that they can use some of the Autobots' Nucleon Shock Cannon turrets on a tower roof against the massive Autobot. Along the way, the group makes contact with Starscream and corrects his mistake, using him to distract Omega Supreme. Once they reached the turrets, the group manages to shoot down Omega Supreme, causing him to crash to the ground below. This is when Megatron and the others make the final assault on him...to unlock Cybertron's core.
In Exodus Chapters 27–28, Omega did nothing to pursue Megatron. Instead, he attempted to depart Cybertron altogether to keep the Plasma Energy Chamber, inside him, away from the Decepticons. Starscream and the Seekers shot down Omega in a brief aerial skirmish.
Chapter V: The Final Guardian
- Characters available: Megatron, Soundwave, Breakdown
- Boss: Omega Supreme (Robot mode)
The Decepticons descend into the impact crater to loot Omega's remains, but he transforms into robot mode, unleashing his full barrage on the squad. Megatron manages to corrupt Omega with Dark Energon, using him to reach and corrupt the core of Cybertron with Dark Energon. The planet itself is now under control of the Decepticons. Or is it?
In Exodus Chapter 29, Omega did not fight alone—Optimus Prime and his top aides were present fighting alongside Omega Supreme at his crash site, until Megatron brought the Guardian low and ripped the Plasma Energy Chamber from within him. Because that was all he needed from Omega, the Guardian was not captured in Exodus, but left badly wounded for the Autobots to retrieve and repair.
Chapter VI: Defend Iacon
In a decimated Iacon, the young Autobot messenger Bumblebee is sent to tell the soldier Optimus that Zeta Prime is dead. Optimus decides to take temporary control of the Autobots, adopting Bumblebee into his team. The two of them and Ratchet kick off a counterattack to push out Decepticon forces. They manage to reactivate the planetary guns, clearing the skies over Iacon, and proceed to aid Ironhide in reclaiming the Decagon, tangling with Starscream along the way. Entering the Decagon, Optimus receives a message from Zeta Prime, revealing that he is not yet dead but is being held in a prison in Kaon. Optimus gathers up a bunch of Autobots to rescue their fallen comrade.
A direct conflict with Starscream like this did not take place at this point in the novel. Iacon was the last bastion of Autobot resistance for most of the novel, and did not need to be reclaimed. Furthermore, Sentinel Prime had been captured since the beginning of the war, so Optimus Prime had already accepted his role as leader.
Chapter VII: Kaon Prison Break
- Characters available: Optimus, Bumblebee, Sideswipe
- Boss: Soundwave
Optimus allows his team to be captured by the Decepticons and enter the prison. The three are just barely saved from a firing squad by Air Raid, but as they escape into the tunnels below, Air Raid is captured. The three Autobots sneak through the prison, rescuing Air Raid and releasing all the Autobot prisoners (including Arcee and Jazz). Using the chaos as a distraction, the trio sneak to the high security bunker Zeta Prime is being held. When the Autobots try to save them, Soundwave attacks, sending out Frenzy, Rumble, and Laserbeak. The Autobots defeat them, but Soundwave manages to retreat. When Optimus tries to rescue Zeta, the Prime tells him that he is already dead and collapses. Optimus returns the body to the High Council, who tell Optimus that he must accept that he is a Prime and take up his role as leader. Thus, he becomes Optimus Prime. He then travels to the core to stop its corruption by dark energon.
In Exodus Chapter 32, Optimus Prime, Jazz and Prowl stormed Kaon to recover a dying Sentinel Prime. It did not involve being deliberately captured or a battle with Soundwave.
Chapter VIII: To the Core
Optimus's first task as Prime is to cure the currently infected core. Heading to the entrance, where Omega Supreme is being held by the Decepticons, the three Autobots manage to free Omega, then call in Ratchet to repair him enough to open the Omega Gate. Thanks to the help of some space slugs, Optimus, Warpath, and Ironhide defeat a corrupted space slug and reach the core. However, the core tells Optimus that, in order to repair itself, it will have to shut down for millions of years, forcing Optimus and the Autobots to evacuate Cybertron. Before the core shuts down, it gives Optimus the Matrix of Leadership. A vessel of pure energy and the collective wisdom of the primes.
In Exodus Chapter 33–34, Optimus Prime, Jetfire and Bumblebee traveled down to the Core, disconnected the corrupted Plasma Energy Chamber, and Optimus received the Matrix of Leadership. It was a largely uneventful trek, as Megatron staged no troops around the Core and trusted the sheer intensity of the Dark Energon in that region to ward off any Autobots. Also, no space slugs.
Chapter IX: Aerial Assault
Returning to Iacon, Optimus Prime orders the launching of a full-scale evacuation of Cybertron's surface. However, as the transports leave the atmosphere, Megatron, feeling slighted by his "brother", begins shooting them down with his
giant purple griffin massive orbital space station. Optimus quickly realizes the need to shut down the station, and hastily sends a group of fliers to shut it down from the inside. The team manages to disable the power core, but Megatron taunts them as he activates a back-up generator. Then the station itself begins to mock them. Realizing the station is a Cybertronian, the team flies in deeper to find its Transformation Cog to force it into its robot mode before it can finish leveling Iacon, and "The Last Prime" along with it. Succeeding, the Autobots race out of the quickly transforming space station as it reveals itself to be Trypticon. The Autobots manage to shoot out the massive Decepticon's thrusters, causing it to hurtle towards the surface of the planet, just outside Iacon. Meanwhile, Optimus and the others decide to investigate the crash site and finish off the beast themselves.
In Exodus Chapter 36–37, Trypticon Station began firing on the Autobot fleet as it fled Cybertron. Optimus Prime and a crew aboard the Eight Track commandoed their way into Trypticon and blasted apart the station from within. The novel made a point of (mostly) treating Jetfire as the only Autobot Seeker, and so there were no Air Raid and Silverbolt to act as his wingmen for a flying assault. Also, Trypticon did not transform in freefall.
Chapter X: One Shall Stand...
- Characters available: Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Ironhide
- Boss: Trypticon
All seems quiet as Optimus, Ironhide, Bumblebee, and others search the wreckage, but soon a very much alive and enraged Trypticon emerges to wage a long and difficult battle with Prime and the Autobots. After repeatedly targeting key weaknesses, Optimus uses his axe to knock Trypticon off balance, sending him plummeting into the deep Energon pool below, causing the last of his systems to shut down. Later, as the remaining Autobot transports escape the planet's dying surface, Optimus informs his primary contingent of their new transport—an Ark that will allow them to keep Cybertron's legacy alive, wherever their adventures may take them. So begins the fall of Cybertron...
In Exodus Chapter 38, Trypticon Station transformed after making planetfall. Optimus Prime and the core Autobots left Cybertron aboard the Ark, avoiding conflict with it. Instead, the Wreckers led by Ultra Magnus remained behind to confront the creature and cover the other Autobots' escape. Soul-crushingly, the battle between the Wreckers and Trypticon was not depicted and, instead of being destroyed, Trypticon transformed into the Nemesis to pursue the Ark through space.
The multiplayer options make up a large portion of War for Cybertron's content.
The single-player campaigns can be played online, with players taking control of the other two allies that are, in singleplayer, rather low-quality A.I. If other players are participating, a tally of each participant's kills is kept.
This cooperative mode puts several friends together against an unending horde of enemies. With each horde vanquished, tougher ones come in. The players can get points from killing enemies, and these points can be used to get new weapons, ammo, health, and to access new areas. Characters in Escalation mode are the same as those selected in Campaign (as well as bonus and DLC characters); custom multiplayer 'bots are not available here.
This broad option is where you will be spending most of your hours after you beat Trypticon. Here, players can create their own Cybertronian combatant and pit them against the multitude of online transfans and 12-year-olds that will more than likely slaughter you. Custom characters can be leveled up by killing dudes in matches, with specific bonuses being given for specific actions. As they level up, more abilities become available.
Characters are created from four different bases, each of which feature different weapons, abilities and alternate forms. They are:
- Scout - Cars. Fast, usually cloakers.
- Scientist - Jets. Also fast, usually medics and buffers.
- Leader - Trucks. Balanced, with emphasis on defense and ally-aid.
- Soldier - Tanks. Slow and powerful, with offensive abilities.
Initially, players are only able to create one of each class, but as they level up, more slots open for a maximum of three of each class. Names can be chosen for each, but don't get too excited about making the Transformer you always dreamed of: bodies are limited to about three options per faction and look exactly like characters from single-player (for example, the Autobot Scout category lets you choose from Bumblebee, Sideswipe, Jazz or Arcee). And while you can pick your color scheme, the palettes are rather limited, especially for Decepticons. Downloading or unlocking additional characters will also make their chassis available for customizing.
Choosing a playlist will automatically send you into a lobby, where the service will do its best to form balanced teams (I.E., you hopefully won't see a team of level 25 leaders fighting one level zero Scout). The service will also select a random stage, which players can veto. Finally, when the game begins, combatants select their character. If your scientist gets butchered too many times, you can pick a different character at any time during the match, and you will switch to it upon dying. Players also cannot pick a faction; the game does it automatically. Weapons can only be picked up from defeated enemies; ammo caches, overshields and energon are scattered throughout the stages.
- Team deathmatch: Kill 40 opponents to win. Games can range from four to sixteen players.
- Deathmatch: Kill 20 opponents to win. It's a free-for-all.
- Conquest: Capture and defend several "power nodes" until your team gets 400 points.
- Code of power: Capture the flag. Team with highest score after two rounds wins.
- Countdown to extinction: Plant the bomb in the enemy's base three times to win.
- Power struggle: Control the active power node until you get 400 points.
Players can also set up private matches, where the game options and maps can be adjusted as you see fit, but they are invite-only. Hopefully, you've got a lot of online friends!
- Optimus Prime
- Air Raid
- Arcee (Unlocked after completing the Autobot Campaign)
- Jazz (Downloadable Content Character)
- Scattershot (Downloadable Content Character)
- Zeta Prime (Downloadable Content Character)
- Slipstream (Unlocked after completing the Decepticon Campaign)
- Shockwave (Downloadable Content Character)
- Demolisher (Downloadable Content Character)
- Onslaught (Downloadable Content Character)
- Dead End (Downloadable Content Character)
- Neutron Assault Rifle
- Scatter Blaster
- EMP Shotgun
- Thermo Rocket Launcher
- Energon Repair Ray
- X12 Scrapmaker
- Ion Displacer
- Ion Cannon
- Magma Frag Launcher
- Energon Battle Pistol
- Photon Burst Rifle
- Nucleon Shock Cannon