If Michael Bay's interpretation of the Transformers (and the
requisite gaming spin-offs that came with it) wasn't quite your style, another
option is on the way.
Hasbro has tapped UK developer Jagex to create a
massively-multiplayer online game based on the 80s toy icon. It's scheduled to
be released in 2012.
Jagex is the company behind the hit Runescape, which has
been recognized by Guinness
as the world's most popular free massively multiplayer online game. There are
roughly 10 million active accounts per month in the game and over 156 million
registered accounts. All totaled, Jagex has made over 40 online games.
"There is a huge appetite for an online Transformers
game and we will utilize every bit of our development and publishing expertise
to deliver a dynamic and action-packed game that Transformers fans will find
irresistible," said Mark Gerhard, CEO at Jagex.
Activision has been the company behind the most recent
Transformers video game adaptations (including the forthcoming Dark
Side of the Moon), but it won't be associated with this release.
Jagex and Hasbro haven't given a lot of details about the
new titles, but they're likely to take Optimus Prime and company in a different
stylistic direction. At its heart, though, expect an epic, perpetual battle
between the Autobots and Decepticons.
The Transformers first appeared in stores in 1984 and
blasted almost immediately onto the pop culture scene via a Saturday morning
syndicated cartoon series that ran for four years. The cartoon resurfaced in
the mid 1990s, when Hasbro rebroadcast the original series with a flashy
computer-generated title sequence.
Long before the 2007 reboot of the franchise, the
Transformers have been a regular presence in the gaming world, with titles
reaching as far back as the Commodore 64.
Will Peter Cullen reprise his voice work as Optimus Prime?
It's unclear. But one thing's a virtual certainty: Shia Labeouf and Megan Fox
aren't going to be allowed within 15 miles of this thing.