Checking in on Activision's Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, I chatted for a bit with a game producer, who explained the sad business truth behind the lack of a Generation One Transformers video game.
While the Revenge of the Fallen game contains numerous references to the original Transformers series, with Aerialbots, Protectorbots, episodes of the cartoon, and a couple of unlockable G1 skins for multiplayer, we won't be seeing a G1 game any time soon. Why? Because there isn't enough demand.
Despite the large and vocal group of G1 fans, a group that I consider myself a part of, Activision doesn't consider that enough to launch a project based on the series. Unless Hasbro does something huge with the original toys and cartoons, that's not likely to change any time soon.
It's a sad truth of the video game industry - there is a distinct lack of willingness to take chances. That's one of the reasons Activision dropped Ghostbusters...why make a game without a major movie release to coincide with it?
The producer put things into perspective for me, pointing out that the first Transformers movie video game, despite being a giant pile of suck, sold millions of copies. People today just aren't as familiar with the origins of the franchise to gamble on the nostalgia factor alone.
Perhaps the release of Atari's Ghostbusters game will change that, and publishers will be more apt to look to the past for big name titles.
This also seems to indicate that whatever High Moon is working on for Activision, it isn't a Generation One Transformers title. Let the sadness ensue.
Update: Game producer Jason Ades doesn't remember talking to me, so it was just some other tallish, blond, relatively buff Activision game producer I talked to on Thursday afternoon for a good 10-15 minutes standing in front of the multiplayer demonstration at the Target game lounge, and not Ades. I removed his name from the rest of the post.