Activision is no stranger to hit game franchises, but one of its more recent surprises has been the High Moon Studios developed shooters based on the Hasbro’s hit Transformers toy line. Both Transformers: War for Cybertron and Transformers: Fall of Cybertron were big hits with gamers. Now the publisher is looking to score a trifecta with the announcement of Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark, currently in development for current consoles and PCs.
For fans, there are a few unexpected twists and turns in the Autobots’ upcoming road trip. First, Rise of the Dark Spark may carry on the legacy of the previous Transformers games, but it will be doing so without High Moon Studios at the helm. Instead, Rise of the Dark Spark’s development is being spearheaded by Edge of Reality, the studio behind SEGA’s The Incredible Hulk and the recently released free-to-play shooter, Loadout.
Even more surprising, Activision has announced that the new game will somehow tie the Cybertron game universe into the Michael Bay movieverse. No details have been released on exactly how this will happen. The story could somehow lead up to the beginning events of Bay’s original Transformers movie and then pick up after or during the events of the upcoming Age of Extinction flick. Another possibility (used more than once in the Transformers comic books) is that some sort of cosmic event will bring the two distinct universes together. Activision’s wording in the press release announcing the new game could certainly be construed that way:
“This third-person action adventure video game goes beyond the movie by uniting the universe of director Michael Bay’s TRANSFORMERS movies with the ever-popular Cybertron universe. Players will choose from over 40 playable characters from the two different universes as they battle to secure the Dark Spark.”
Regardless of how Rise of the Dark Spark attempts to bring the two Transformers properties together, fans of Fall of Cybertron and War for Cybertron should still feel right at home, as the new title looks to follow the same formula as the previous entries. Once again, players will switch between Autobots and Decepticons over the course of the single-player campaign. Rise of the Dark Spark will also feature the return of the fan-favorite multiplayer mode, Escalation, which pits teams of up to four players against wave after wave of increasingly difficult enemy forces in a brutal survival mode.
Transformers: Rise of the Dark Spark is currently slated for a June 2014 release on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U, 3DS, and Windows-based PCs.