Game News: "Transformers Earth Wars" Kup & Hun-Grrr info and character Q&A
In previous weeks, we’ve taken a look at art concepts for Kup & Hun-Gurrr as well as their modeling and animation pipelines. This week, we’ll be diving deep into gameplay territory.
Kup and Hun-Gurrr are both members of the Special class, yet their in-game stats and abilities differ widely. Upon release, they will be paired to an as of yet unannounced Autobot and Decepticon.
Design Goals & Role
Kup is a hugely experienced fighter and a key member of the elite Wreckers unit. Therefore, we wanted to give him respectable damage and enough health to stand his ground on the battlefield. He fits a role of a deep strike and assault unit, a damage dealer that can survive in the middle of enemy base, tackle important targets and escape when needed.
Kup’s base stats of put him close to Windblade. His attack range is relatively small, but he can dish out almost as much damage as gunners. Kup’s health pool (while not as high as a regular ‘warrior class’ bot) is twice the health of most air units. Moreover, his movement speed of 2.3 (compared to 1.8 for gunners and 2 for air) allows him to move between targets with relative ease.
Attacks & Weaponry
As his primary attack against buildings and bots, Kup uses dual submachine guns. Their rapid rate of fire means Kup can deal highly consistent DPS (damage per second) and can finish off targets in a quick and efficient manner.
But Kup has more tricks up his sleeve... Every 10 seconds, he will use a long range cluster grenade attack. These grenades significantly increase his DPS, can be thrown over walls and deal damage across a respectable area of effect.
Teleport to a target location and gain 70% damage reduction and immunity to slows and stuns for 5 (lvl 1) - 8.4 (lvl 10) seconds.
Orbital Bounce is what makes Kup truly unique and will let highly skilled players (with their impeccable timing and positioning) turn a good bot into the stuff of Cybertronian legends.
This teleportation skill was voted by the community as one of their favourites and we’ve since improved it by adding a shielding component to ensure that once Kup dives deep into the heart of an enemy base, he’ll get the protection he needs to escape safely.
Design Goals & Role
Leader of vicious Terrorcons and a cunning tactician, Hun-Gurrr both looks and fights like no other ‘con! His unique ‘mode based’ special ability hugely increases his damage potential and allows him to attack multiple buildings at once. Used in conjunction with gunners and medium/close range fighters like Nemesis Prime or Galvatron, Hun-Gurrr can cut through enemy lines with ease.
Stat wise, Hun-Gurrr is comparable to the leader of Predacons - Razorclaw. He has an impressive movement speed of 3.4 (0.2 faster than Razorclaw and twice as fast as warrior class ‘cons, who usually move at 1.7). Damage of our Terrorcon is 10% lower than Razorclaw’s, but his health is 10% higher!
Attacks & Weaponry
In his regular mode, Hun-Gurrr has a series of vicious melee attacks as well as a medium-range fire breathing move similar to the one of Grimlock.
Attack with fierce strength hitting multiple targets in a line, setting enemy buildings on fire and dealing up to 300% (lvl 1) - 425% (lvl 10) of damage. This mode lasts 15 seconds.
Fire Frenzy is what turns a cool looking ‘con into the truly terrifying harbinger of destruction. Until now, this type of “mode based” ability has only been used on the new combiners (Frantic/Righteous Rage abilities of Optimus Maximus and Bruticus). Once activated, Hun-Gurrr engages the chosen target and stays in this special mode for 15 seconds, he’s able to move and retarget as needed.
Moreover, his attacks can hit multiple targets in a long line behind the target, setting them on fire and dealing greatly increased damage. With good support and positioning, Hun-Gurrr can easily carve huge holes in even the strongest defense lines.
New Bots Preview - Dev Q&A Answers
You asked and we answered! Check out the responses from Chris (Product Owner) and Adam (Game Designer) to your questions in our latest developer Q&A.
Q) How do you determine relative sizes between bots and their alt form to other bots? / How do you decide a size of bots? Do you have any reference material you need to stick to when deciding a size of bots?
A) There are two different scales used in the game; one for the Team screen and another scale that is used in battle. For in-game clarity, we try to make bots fit within the boundaries set for their respective classes. Occasionally we’ll tweak scales on a per bot basis but there’s only so far we can go in terms of scale before things either become hard to read or start obstructing the in-game interface or competing with buildings. In game size also affects their physical radius and path finding. As in the comics and cartoons, we take some liberties but respect the size relations between bots; Bumblebee will always be much smaller than Optimus Prime for example.
Q) How long does the whole development process take to create per character?
A) From start to finish, the process takes around 6 weeks. However, we can create up to 4 characters in parallel over this period of time.
Q) Do you have any reference materials such as actual toys when developing new characters?
A) We draw inspiration from a wide range of sources when we compile a character’s moodboard and are often spoilt for choice. We make use of Transformers The Ark: A Complete Compendium Of Transformers Animation Models, the IDW comics, G1 movie references, the Marvel G1 Universe book and of course the toys themselves! The tfwiki and other fansites are an invaluable online source of knowledge, so props to those guys too!
Q) Does Hasbro review all the new characters before they make it into the game?
A) Absolutely. We work closely with Hasbro at each stage of the character creation process. This ensures we get feedback at each stage of the process from moodboards, through to blockouts and animations. An example of some feedback might be, ‘can you add the Autobot insignia to the character’s chest’ through to guidance on character sizing and the visual look and styling.
Q) Character itself or their ability, which do you guys work on first?
A) The class of the bot is determined by our designer before the artistic process begins, but it rarely affects the visuals and often the process is intertwined. One example of this is when we created Galvatron. In toy form, Galvatron has turned into both a cannon and tank. The design team wanted to make use of his static cannon as an ability to differentiate him from Megatron. Therefore, this feedback was given to the art team early in the process. Similarly, for weapons, the design team will give the art team feedback on which ones should be included with the character.
Q) Will Predaking be added to the game at some point? / Will Victorion be added to the game as a combiner?
A) We love both Predaking & Victorion and would like to add them in the future. However, we’re going to focus on some other innovative characters first that will hopefully bring unique gameplay options to battle.
Q) How much of a priority is getting the rest of the Stunticons out?
A) It’s going to take some time as we’re missing a lot of key Stunticons right now. However, Drag Strip may have a new Stunticon friend joining him very soon…
Q) Is Beast (the Combiner that consists of Grimlock, Slag, Sludge, Snarl and Swoop) in your future plan?
A) That sounds like an awesome combiner!
Q) Any plans to add Triple Changers?
A) Some of our favourite characters are Triple Changers. We’d love to add them, and when we do, we’ll do them justice with multiple abilities for each bot. This means triple changing both in both battle and the team screen.
Q) When can we expect to see the remaining Dinobots? / I am hoping to see the remaining dinobots soon. Can you tell me if you have plans to let them join the game?
A) Dinobots are awesome and we will add them ALL over time. Adam, our designer, is secretly hoping we’ll add Paddles, but we keep vetoing that suggestion! One day we’ll run out of new characters to add, and just have to include Paddles…
Q) I would like to see Metroplex and Trypticon bases incorporated into the game, are there any plans to add them?
A) Due to their size we’d need to find a novel way of using them. Either they’d have to become part of the base, or form a new game mode entirely!
Q) I have been requesting the same bot since I started playing. Are there any plans to add Warpath to the game? He is a G1 Autobot and the first tank to appear in the G1 cartoon. Right now the bots have no tanks when the cons have more than one. It would be great to see him fire from his chest cannon
A) We’re sad to say that he’s not on our plan right now, but we’ve doubled the number of Transformers in the game in just under a year so there’s every chance he could make an appearance in the future.
We’ve tried to focus on answering questions directly related to bots this time round, but here are some other responses to frequently asked questions!
Q) Can you release the ability damage numbers for Sunstreaker / Mirage / Pyra / Slug. IE: All the bots where damage is not mentioned. Silverbolt for instance. Even Bumblebee could be re-written. I don't understand why this has not been done already.
A) We only have the functionality expose one parameter per ability. For the aforementioned bots we’ve opted for duration. We aim to either provide a second parameter or possibly change what we display, especially for fire based attacks (the latter should be relatively straightforward).
Q) Do you plan to increase the maximum level for bots in the future?
A) We have no plans to do this at present.
Q) If you use a bot in battle which has reached it's maximum bot level, is the XP distributed to that bot and lost or do the other bots in your squad get the XP?
A) The XP is lost.
Q) When will we see the next Shuttle upgrade for 8 bots
A) Currently we do not have plans to release another Shuttle upgrade.
Q) Is there a plan to boost current battle boosts as most are very underwhelming at this point?
A) Yes we are going to address this. Stay tuned!