Transformers: Forged to Fight Review

The Transformers: Forged to Fight mobile game just came out in the U.S. for iOS and Android. It’s a fighting game that includes characters from many different generations of the Transformers franchise. That means you can have G1 Optimus Prime fight the live action Micheal Bay movie, Optimus Prime. Alternatively, you could have fan-created Windblade from the IDW comics take on Beast Wars Rhinox.

Developed by Kabam, who also made a very popular Marvel Comics fighting game called Contest of Champions. Transformers: Forged to Fight uses the same fighting game engine as Contest of Champions, but adds a 3D experience to the game by giving the characters the ability to sidestep.


The idea behind Transformers: Forged To Fight is that Transformers from every single aspect of the franchise’s history are being drawn into battle by an unknown enemy. You’re going to see characters from the original 1980s generation, Beast Wars, The Michael Bayverse live action movies, and the IDW comics fighting each other in one-on-one battles.

The story of the game comes to you by way of single-player chapters. Marissa Fairborn is the human character who acts as your battle commander.

At each stage, you are on a map that can have multiple branching paths. It allows you as the player to take an easier route or a harder one. Each with its own varying levels of rewards.


With multiplayer comes base management. Along with harvesting resources, you’ll be able to assign idle Transformers to guard against other players attacking your base. You’ll also be able to form an alliance with your friends. If you join in on alliance battles you stand to get larger rewards than going at it solo.


One of the biggest reasons to play Transformers: Forged To Fight, is the ability to collect so many Transformers from many different generations of the franchise. This is something you haven’t been able to do before in thirty plus years Transformers games. With so many different characters you’ll get some unique animations. Everything from Transforming, shooting, and special moves.

As far as mobile fighting games go this is one of the best ones I’ve played. It’s fun and easy enough to learn. Though I do wish I could find a list of moves.

Like nearly every other mobile game available, this one is freemium. You’re going to get asked a lot to buy energy, crystals, shields, repair kids, etc at every opportunity. Personally, I would rather spend twenty bucks up front to have a fully unlocked game.


YOSHICAST #013 – Talking Sketch Covers With Casey Coller

On this Episode of the YOSHICAST we have a chat with comic book artist Casey Coller and talk about blank comic book covers.


TransMissions Podcast
TFCon video

Casey Coller
Twitter: @CaseyWColler

Here are some images from our visit to the Megatron, Killing Joke graffiti in Chicago, Illinois. The street art was created by artist Greve.

Thanks for checking out episode #013 of the YOSHICAST! If you want to comment on what you’ve heard on this episode please send an e-mail, leave a comment below, Facebook me, Send me a tweet, or call me up and leave a voice mail. I’d love to hear from you. (360) 610-7047.

TransMissions: Peter Frank

My eight response to the 100 letters was from Peter Frank. Peter’s Orginal Letter to Marvel’s Transformers appeared in Issue 40: Pretender to the Throne!

“This is possibly the most bizarre message I’ve ever received in my life, haha! Your project is fascinating, and I’m honored to be a tiny part of it.”

Peter’s Letter in the 80s Marvel comic reads:

Dear Transmissions,
I think I have a No-Prize coming. In issue #21 of the TRANSFORMERS, Jetfire dropped ol’ Danny Finkelberg about 6,000 ft. up and then caught him at about a hight of 10ft. Of course there’s a considerable amount of distance between those two points and ‘Finky’ must have gained a lot of speed in the time he fell. Now, the mistake: Since Finky was falling at a tremendous rate of speed, how could he fall into supposedly metal hands without breaking every bone in his body? The explaination? Easy; Wheeljack considered the possibility of the Autobots handling humans often, so he designed a special material which feels soft no matter how hard it is hit. Prime made sure every Autobot had hands coated with this material, so humans would be safe when touched or held by and Autobot.
I hope I have met the qualifications of a No-Prize, which are: to point out a mistake and then provide an explanation that “saves your dignity.”
Make Mine Marvel!
Pete Frank
Erie, PA

Peter gave me the answers to my questions via e-mail. So, here is Peter Frank, 3o-ish years later.

How did you discover the Transformers?

In May of 1984, I was nine years old. I remember it took a while for those letters to be published, so, I can’t believe I was so young to actually write a letter like that.

At 41 today, I have a five-year-old son and one-year-old daughter, and seeing them now, with their relative experience (or lack thereof), it makes this observation of myself all the more crazy.

I remember a couple things about that letter:

The publisher would reward people if they came up with a good resolution to a perceived flaw, and I remember I really, really thought I’d nailed it.

I was so devastated (no Transformers pun intended) to “disappoint” them that I don’t think it ever occurred to me how incredible it was to actually be published in the back of one of these comics that I cherished so deeply. Your bringing this up really has me seeing it with a different perspective. I’ve never felt lucky to have been published, but I feel like I should, now.

I vividly remember reading their response and lamenting I hadn’t thought through my explanation more thoroughly.

Another funny thing I remember: people often ended their letter with a witty “Until _________, Make Mine Marvel!”, filling in some sort of clever play on words, like “Until Prime tells a lie, make mine marvel…

I’d included my own, though it was edited from the printed version. (I’m sure you’ve read several of these plays on words in reading these letters throughout the issues.)

My horrific attempt at humor was “Until ice box – Make Mine Marvel!”

Obviously I wasn’t able to conjure the level of humor I was hoping to!

It’s a tiny thing, but it’s funny I remember that detail so well.

As far as your questions…

Discovering the Transformers… I cannot remember whether I saw the cartoon or the toys first. There was plenty of both in my life during this time.

I remember my first Transformer toy – Skywarp, a Decepticon plane that wasn’t often in the cartoon. Black and purple, and beautiful, haha.

I had those “friends across the street” whose parents were divorced and so these kids seemed to get everything they wanted. I’d be so pumped about my one awesome toy, and then they’d have a dozen, and all the really good ones.

(Although I did get the Omega Supreme toy one Christmas, which for a little while made me coolest kid on the block.)

It was with those friends that I went (all the way across town, to the “shady movie theater”) to see Transformers: The Movie when it was released.

I’ll never forget the kids in front of us, who every time a new character was introduced (like Soundwave’s new tapes) would yell, “Oh I have that toy! I have that one too! I do!” Hysterical to remember, now.

Where did you get your Transformers comics from?

I grew up (and still live) in a relatively quiet suburban area, however we were close to one of the busier, main roads in the area. About six blocks up the road, at an intersection with another major route, there’s a corner store – Kelly’s Corner Market.

I’d take back roads as far as I could, and then risk the one block along the main drag to get to the store.

Amidst the other comics (and uncovered porn), I’d check for the latest issue of Transformers.

I also got into Hawkeye and Batman, I remember.

That store was my main source, until I figured out I could order subscriptions.

You ask “Who are you today”, but honestly I have no time to even think about that, haha. I imagine a lot of it comes through in this message anyways.

Finally – “Are you still a Transformers fan?”

I’ll say I remain a devoted fan of The Transformers of my time. I don’t pay attention to any of the new incarnations, really.

I learned recently about that company that’s re-releasing the cartoons in high-def, and some release of the movie coming out again soon? I’ll definitely buy that, just to have it.

I may or may not buy a set of the cartoons for my kids. I’ll probably find some episodes online and see how they take to them, when I think they’re old enough.

I wouldn’t invest for myself, however. I have enough hobbies as an adult, and I cherish the memories of that time in my life, enough to not have to go re-experience it all.

If my kids were to get into it, however, I’m sure I would really, really enjoy going through it again, with them.

All that said, I do watch the first Michael Bay movie every once in a while, even though I hate it. “It’s still Transformers”, right?

My take on the live action movies was that they blew it when they made the stories centered around the human characters rather than the robots. I’ve said to many – “I don’t give a shit about the people – the story is supposed to be about the robots!” (which sounds hysterical to rationalize, as an adult).

With the comics – though the box is covered in dust in my basement – I’ll say I’m proud to still have Transformers issues #1 through #55 or so, all bagged and backed. I just opened the box a year ago or so, and they remain in great shape.

I also have a few acquaintances with whom I share our love of the story (usually centered around the movie).

Just today we had an exchange on Facebook about Vince DiNicola’s score (and how incredibly good it is).

I’m going on and on here, but I hope this is somehow fulfilling for you.

Again, I can’t believe I received something in the mail from someone about the letter in that comic.

It’s been great to think about all of this, and to share it with someone who appreciates it like this. Thank you very, very much, for reaching out.

Best of luck with all things!

Many thanks goes out to Peter Frank for his time to respond to me. I really enjoyed his answers.

TransMissions: Mark Salom

My seventh response to the 100 letters I mailed out was not from Mark Salom, but from his sister-in-law, Fran Carpentier-Salom. Mark’s letter appeared in issue 7, entitled: Warrior School!

Transformers Issue 7“I am thrilled to tell you how happy I was to receive your letter for my dear brother-in-law (and Transformers fan) Mark Salom.” Fran wrote. “In fact, in Feb. 2012, Mark sustained a catastrophic fall in his home which rendered him a quadriplegic. His brother (my husband) and I had Mark treated at the renowned Kessler Institute, which is where the late actor Christopher Reeves sought treatment, but there was little that could be done for Mark. Thus, in May 2012, Mark moved full-time into a nursing home in Brooklyn. Rest assured, that he is as comfortable and, despite his situation, as happy as it is possible to be.”

As trilled as I was to get another response to the 100 letters I sent out, this one felt like a gut check. In the last few years I’ve gotten to be apart of the Transformers fandom through this blog and the TransMissions Podcast. Hearing Mark’s story and how he has been affected touched me more than any other response I’ve gotten thus far.

Mark is a Transformers fan. He’s one of us. He had a really shitty thing happen to him. I wish nothing be the best for him.

If I where a better writer, I could come up with a more eloquent way to introduce Mark’s original letter that was published in the 80s Marvel comic.

Dear Editor and Assistant Editor,
I am enjoying these new comic characters the TRANSFORMERS both in comic form and in animated cartoon (Channel 11-WPIX, Sundays at 10). It has come to my attention that between the comic and the animated cartoon there are (more or less) 11 different DECEPTICONS, 19 different AUTOBOTS and the 5 different DINOBOTS.
I would like in the future issues of the TRANSFORMERS (or in a special TRANSFORMERS Yearbook, like you did for G.I. JOE recently), a special reference section which has pictures and a brief information printout on al the above mentioned DECEPTICONS, AUTOBOTS, and DINOBOTS, and those robots you will yet bring to life, if any. Please follow up my thoughts when you get the series going again early in 1985.
Please try to keep the TRANSFORMERS animated cartoon going because it is really very good. Both children and adults can enjoy this show. – Mark Salom, Brooklyn, NY

Now 30 some odd years later and with the help of Fran and Mark’s trusty aide, Pauline,  Mark answers my questions.

How did you discover Transformers?

I discovered them in the early 80s. I discovered the comic series. also the movies, and the voice overs!!!

Where did I get my Transformers comics from?

I used to buy my Transformer comics in Manhattan—what most people call New York City. I live in Brooklyn, which is a borough of NYC, the same way that the Bronx and Queens and Staten Island are. The five boroughs, get it? On Saturdays, after synagogue services, I would take the subway from my home in Sheepshead Bay—the section of Brooklyn shown in the recent Bill Murray film Saint Vincent—into Manhattan to a special comic book store in midtown. That’s the good thing about Manhattan. It has something for everyone’s taste. Going to the comics store was a highpoint of my week. I actually have a big collection of old comics.”

Who are you today?

I am not sure how to answer this!

Are you still a Transformers fan?

I am still a big fan! But I don’t get much access to comic book stores and my cable tv service doesn’t seem to run the movies.

Many, many thanks go out to Mark, Fran and Pauline for their time and help. I wish the very best to all of them.

TransMissions: Mark Baker-Wright

My sixth response to the 100 letters I mailed out was from one Mark Baker-Wright. Mark’s letter appeared in issue 61, entitled: The Primal Scream.

Transformers_issue61_coverMark’s story starts out a little different then the others I’ve interviewed. See, mark found out about my little project from a facebook post about it. Mark even talks about having his letter show up in the Transformers comic on a blog post he wrote entitled: The Single Most Cataclysmically Important Transformers Story, Ever.

Mark’s Letter in the 80s Marvel comic reads:

Dear Transmissions,

After reading the several million letters you have printed by people begging you to bring back certain characters, I feel it is time to start giving your writers some advice. They shouldn’t pay so much attention to which new toys Hasbro are producing, and -most importantly- it shouldn’t matter that Hasbro is no longer producing certain characters as toys. Just because these characters aren’t made anymore doesn’t mean you have to kill them off in the comic!

In the 55 issues so far I have seen many characters (good and bad) killed off: Shockwave, Megatron and (everyone’s favorite) Starscream, to name some Decepticons, and Jazz, Blasters and Sunstreaker, on the Autobot side. Please stop this trend before all we’re left with are Pretenders, Micromasters, Powermasters and the like!

I’d better just add this I’ve just flicked to the final page of issue #56, and seen Megatron! So perhaps this letter was unnecessary.

Mark Wright
Louisvill, KY

mark-baker-wrightMark gave me some of his time to answer my questions. So here is Mark, 3o-ish years later.

How did you discover the Transformers?

I *think* I saw Bumblebee in the toy store before I even knew what Transformers were, but won’t swear to it. I first became familiar with the franchise through friends at school, and through the cartoon mini-series which aired a couple of times before the series proper began.

Where did you get your Transformers comics from?

For the most part, I either got my comics from the grocery store or via subscription (especially once I figured out that subscriptions were cheaper than getting the issues from the store!). I got every issue as it came out starting with issue #8, but did have to go back by various means to collect issues #1-7 (especially comic shops. But the closest to me was on the opposite end of town, so this was by no means convenient) I’m quite proud of having every Transformers-related comic Marvel US ever put out (with this caveat: I only have one issue of the “digests” that only collected a couple of previously-released issues, as well as only one of the “collected comics” softcovers… In this case the one that collected issues 1-3 in a slightly-edited form. I don’t know how many “collected comics” were released).

What compelled you to write to Marvel’s Transformers?

My letter itself (as well as my blog entry) gets to this fairly well. It was clear at this point in time that the Transformers toy line was focused on just a couple of line-wide gimmicks each year (at the time that I wrote, this would have been Pretenders and Micromasters. A year or so later, it was just Action Masters and Micromasters), and I was afraid that the comics would be following suit (which, to a degree, of course they were).

What was it like to see your letter printed in the back of the comic?

I was pretty excited to see my letter printed. After all, I was just 15 at the time, and this was like becoming famous!

Who are you today and are you still a Transformers fan?

I’m still a Transformers fan, and keep pretty active in the online community. Besides my blog, Blackrock’s Toybox, I’m pretty well-known on several of the more prominent message boards, where I’ve used the moniker “G.B. Blackrock” for many years now. I work as support staff in higher education, having completed almost 15 years on the staff of Fuller Theological Seminary, and now working at Azusa Pacific University for just over a year.

Many thanks goes out to Mark Baker-Wright for his time to respond to me. I really enjoyed his responses to my questions.

TransMissions: Brendan Crispin

My fifth response to the 100 letters I mailed out was from one Brendan Crispin. Crispin’s letter appeared in issue 63, entitled: Kings of the Wild Frontier.

Transformers_issue63_coverBrendan Crispin, responded to my letter for an interview by saying, “My mother forwarded the letter you sent to my old address which you found in the fan letters page of issue #63. Yep, my mother still lives in the same house. It’s wild to think you are contacting me more than 25 years after the Transformers comic book published my letter.”

Crispin’s letter in the 80s Marvel comic reads:

Dear Transmissions,

For a long time I’ve felt that the Transformers series was somewhat disappointing, while at the same time being full of potential. In the last few issues I’ve perceived crucial changes that lead me to believe you’re finally tapping that elusive potential. And best yet, it’s leading somewhere! Megatron’s revival, although not captivating for me, was an essential step in your progression. And now that Megatron’s revival, although not captivating for me, was an essential step in your progression. And now that Megatron’s overseeing the restoration of Starscream–this is almost too much! Optimus Prime unleashed? Never! Really? I’d love to see Prime kick Megaton into the next time zone.

One Suggestion: I’m sure a lot of Transformers fans would like to contact others, including me. So why don’t you devote a page each issue to addresses of TF fans who’d like to correspond? Give it a try, eh?

Brendan Crispin
Madison, WI

Now, 30ish years later we get to hear from Brendan Crispin again.

Youseph: How did I discover Transformers?

My cousin who was a few years younger than myself came over to my house and brought his Constructicon Bonecrusher figure with him. I remember how eagerly he told me about Bonecrusher. I don’t remember specifics, but I imagine he told me about the character’s quotation and info from Bonecrusher’s profile as printed on the back of the toy packaging. Probably also that Bonecrusher combined with other Constructicons to form a larger robot. I was about 13 years old then. I quickly became enamored with Transformers.

Youseph: Where did I get my Transformers comics from?

I started collecting the original Transformers comic book series from very early on. I don’t remember which issue was the first I bought, but I’m pretty sure it was one of the first 8 issues and that I bought it at a Waldenbooks which was a mall-based bookstore chain. I don’t recall if I ever paid for a subscription to have the comics sent to me in the mail, but I would’ve bought issues at various comic book stores and other stores that sold comic books back then such as grocery stores, drug stores, KMart and maybe even gas station convenience stores. I did buy the first several issues of the series which I had missed, and I collected the entire series till the end.

Youseph: Who are you today?

No one extraordinary, but I wish I could once again experience the anticipation and thrill of discovering new Transformers characters in the TV cartoon and when the new season’s toyline was released.

Youseph: Are you still a Transformers fan?

Yes and no. I’m not an ‘active’ fan, but I still strongly and fondly remember my teenage years as a Generation 1 Transformers fan. If new Transformers toys and cartoons were still being produced in the style of Generation 1, I’d undoubtedly still be buying some figures and watching the cartoon. :D But sadly, G1 went down an unfortunate path leading to Pretenders and Action Masters.

A huge thanks goes out to Brendan Crispin for his time to respond to me. I really enjoyed his responses to my questions.

TransMissions: Ulysses Stockdale

The fouth response from the 100 letters I mailed out was from one Ulysses Stockdale. Ulysses’s letter appeared in issue 26 entitled: Funeral For A Friend.

Transformers-issue-26-coverUlysses responded to my letter for an interview by calling me up. It was truly a lot of fun to talk with him. After I asked my interview questions Ulysses had several of his own and was pleased to learn of the recent Transformers: The Movie blue-ray release.

Ulysses’s letter in the 80s Marvel comic read:

“Dear Transmissions,
I have just read TRANSFORMERS THE MOVIE, and I very much want to congratulate you for doing a very superb job on this movie. The plot was great, I love every minute of it. But there is something I need to have answered. I was very saddened to see Ironhide’s death along with the other Autobots on the ship, as well as Optimus Prime’s death. What I want to know is will Optimus and the other Autobots ever be brought back to life by the Creation Matrix, or by something else? they survived ten millions years, so couldn’t they live another million? O hate to see Optimus go, he is my favorite Autobot. Please don’t get me wrong about this, but we both know that no Autobot, not even Rodimus Prime could ever be as wise and as strong as the great Optimus Prime. I would very much like to see a sequel to these movie (even if it does kill you) because only you guys can do it the best. Buy the way, keep up the good work on the TRANSFORMERS comic books, the artwork is great.
Ulysses Stockdale
Heiskell, TN”

Now, 30ish years later we get to hear from Ulysses again.

Youseph: How did you discover the Transformers?

The original cartoon of course. That just caught my attention. I was a big anime fan when I was young. They used to show Star Blazers, Tranzor Z, the american version of the anime. When I saw Transformers it really caught my attention. I’d seen the toys prior to the TV show, but I didn’t pay much attention to the toys. They kinda looked a little less than neat so to speak. But the cartoon really caught my attention. That’s how I got into it.

Youseph: Where did you get your Transformers comics from?

Anywhere I could score them. My parents where not exactly fond of me buying comic books in general. They thought I could use my time much more wisely. I was a kid and that kind of stuff…. You gotta let a kid be a kid. That kind of stuff is a gold mine for a kid.

I found my comic books at 7-11’s or gas stations. Anywhere that they had a comic book rack. I collected them out of order. Whatever I could find I would buy and fill in the gaps later.

Youseph: What compelled you to write to to Marvel’s Transformers?

Primarily it was the movie. I’d never seen such a well done animated movie. I really really enjoyed the movie and of course my love for the Transformers. I was heart broken that Optimus was killed off in that movie. And of course the next thing I did, I had to have a movie adaptation of the comic book so I went out and found those. The movie was primarily what prompted me to write.

Youseph: What was it like to see your letter printed in the back of the comic?

It had to be pointed out to me that I was even in the letters section. As a kid, it was like hitting the lottery. Not that I got anything from it, but wow, My name is out there. My letter is out their, in print now. It was really cool as a kid, but as I look back on it, it was a bit humbling that someone would take the time to respond to me.

Youseph: Who are you today and are you still a Transformers fan?

A happily married man with a wife who understand I’m still a kid at heart and has no problem with my fascination with transformers. Yeah, I still love transformers. I have all the blue rays for the most recent movies.

I really have to thank Ulysses for his phone call and his time. I had a lot of fun chatting with him. He still has my number, so who knows. Maybe I’ll hear from him again down the road.