Transformers Online Designed as a Mix of Destiny and Warframe, Targeting October 2021 for the Open Beta
It's been over two years since we reported the announcement of a new Transformers Online game project licensed to Leyou.
Now, at last, we got the first concrete details thanks to a handful of documents that went public following Leyou's acquisition by Tencent. Bear in mind that these documents are a few years old now and as such, features and concepts may have changed in some ways.
First of all, at the time of the license agreement between Hasbro and Leyou (dated August 2017), the Transformers Online game, powered by Unreal Engine 4 technology, was called Transformers: Impact and it was openly aiming to combine the best from Destiny (shared hub and combat spaces) and Warframe (cooperative PvE focus, frenetic combat, 'Frames' and weapons, free to play and live service model).
The document also includes plenty of info on the backstory and the main features as they were being designed at the time.
Many years in the future, the Aegis, a massive alien superweapon, drifts into the Sol
System. The Autobots and Decepticons wage a fierce battle for control of the derelict weapon. The battle ends in a massive explosion, decimating both Transformer forces and shattering the Aegis into massive Shards. The Shards rain down on Earth with devastating impact, instantly corrupting the land where they fall.
Now, with the combined fate of the Transformers and humanity threatened, the Autobots and Decepticons must band together from a small, desperate outpost, and fight for survival against the Corruption brought by the Shards of Aegis.
Gather the Transformers - Venture into the Corruption, find Transformers, bring them back
Transformation - Transformation into Vehicles enhances movement and combat
Factional Choices - Mission choices drive you toward the Autobots I Decepticons
Dynamic Headquarters - Headquarters and NPCs in it vary depending on Moral Choices
Diverse Environments - Each Shard is a new Zone (Antarctica, Sahara, New York, etc)
Starting with just a single playable Transformer, it is up to the players to rebuild the Transformers presence on Earth.
Collect - Players will collect new Transformers through gameplay or purchase
Unique - Each playable Transformer has a unique play-style and abilities
New Characters - Each playable Transformer is designed to fit ability set
Combat and Movement
Fast paced combat and movement designed to showcase the power and speed of the Transformers.
Feel the Power - Fight hordes of enemies and quickly dispatch them
Jump Around the Battlefield - Quick traversal options add tactical options
Deep Combat Systems - Main Weapon, Utility Weapon, Melee, Unique Abilities
Archetypes define the Transformer's abilities, movement speed, base health, armor, and initial weapon loadout.
Offense - Hits fast and moves faster. Prioritizes damage over survivability.
Defense - "Lock down" areas through damage mitigation or massive firepower.
Support - Assists teammates in combat. Healing, shielding, damage boosting, etc.
Control - Debilitates enemies. Shield drain, armor removal, slowing, etc
Quick Transformation into and out of Vehicles adds to the power and speed of combat.
Instant Abilities - Transform, execute ability, then Transform back at the push of a button
Traversal - Ground, Aerial, and Beast movement modes create new opportunities
From the ruins of the Earth, the Transformers rebuild their Headquarters which serves as a gathering place for Transformers and Humans alike. Together, they fight to survive.
Gameplay Hub - Return after missions to Craft, Customize, Upgrade, Purchase, etc
Interact with Key Characters - Main Transformers in HQ to give advice, quests, etc
Factional Choices - Players choose between Autobot & Decepticon quest-givers
Dynamic HQ - HO changes as you rebuild and make factional choices
Social Experience - See and interact with other players
The main characters in the Transformers universe will join the fight for survival.
Mentors in HQ - Give players advice and quests back at HQ
Fight With You - Join the fight alongside players on custom missions
Playable - Unique missions that allow you to play as key characters
Long Term Play
Transformers: Impact combines addictive combat with long term RPG systems to keep players entertained for years.
Collect, Level & Customize - Build your army & arsenal!
Crafting - Deep crafting system drives long term goals
New Content, New Goals - Playable Transformers, Weapons, Shards, Missions
Now, the original license agreement projected a Q4 2018 'early access' debut with the commercial launch coming in Q2 2019 on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. Of course that didn't happen (newsflash at eleven - videogame delays), which is why a first amendment was made in March 2019, and a second one in July 2020. This latter document mentions October 31st, 2021 as the new deadline for the Transformers Online Open Beta, while the commercial launch should occur 'no later than April 30th, 2022'.
Needless to say, even these dates are far from set in stone, but there is cause to be hopeful. After all, in Leyou's annual report from just a few months ago, we learned that developer Certain Affinity has submitted a 'satisfactory beta version' which prompted Leyou to grant an extra development funding of $10 million; last but not least, Leyou invited one of its premiere development studios, Splash Damage (Dirty Bomb, Batman: Arkham Origins, more recently Gears Tactics and the upcoming Outcasters), to help in this final phase. It shouldn't be long now before we see footage of Transformers Online; stay tuned.