PS2 Walkthroughs: Transformers Walkthrough

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Transformers Walkthrough

Transformers Armada: Prelude to Energon for PS2

Version 1.2 (May 12th, 2004)

By Christian "BlackFurredBeast" Pohl
(chris5975@web.de)

1.   Intro
1.1. Foreword
1.2. Email Policy, Credits and Copyright Notice
1.3. Version History
1.4. Spacing and Length
1.5. Things to do

2.   FAQ (please read first before mailing me)

3.   Characters
3.1. Optimus Prime
3.2. Red Alert
3.3. Hot Shot3
3.4. Enemies! And how to beat them...

4.   Minicons
4.1. R1 Minicons (Blasters)
4.2. R2 Minicons (Secondary/Support)
4.3. L1 Minicons (Armor/Movement)
4.4. L2 Minicons (Support)
4.5. Minicon Combos

5.   The Levels
5.1. Amazon
5.2. Antarctica
5.3. Deep Amazon
5.4. Mid-Atlantic
5.5. Alaska
5.6. Starship
5.7. Pacific Islands
5.8. Cybertron

6.   Bosses
6.1. Antarctica (Starscream)
6.2. Deep Amazon (Cyclonus)
6.3. Mid-Atlantic (Tidal Wave)
6.4. Starship (Starscream - Again)
6.5. Pacific Islands (Megatron)
6.6. Unicron

7.   Cheat Codes
 
8.   Thanks and EOF

*********
* Intro *
*********

* 1.1. Foreword *

I happened to notice TRANSFORMERS ARMADA: Prelude to Energon by sheer accident.
When I got a gaming magazine, I popped in the accompanying video DVD and found
myself looking at a new TRANSFORMERS game made by Melbourne House, and
distributed by Atari. As an old fan, having played with the toys in my youth,
I looked at the footage which showed a graphically impressive game, and the
guy showcasing it was having a blast playing. So I preordered my copy and
hoped for the best. I wasn't disappointed. The game is really good, and I am
trying to do it justice in this FAQ. But without further ado, let's rumble!

This is my second FAQ, so if you have something on your mind (except for
senseless bashing of my work) just tell me.

If you need to find certain info quickly, use the index number in your search.
I try to avoid using complicated search tags when possible, so the numbers
should suffice.

* 1.2. E-Mail Policy, Credits and Copyright Notice *

If you want to participate in this FAQ by sending alternate minicon
combinations, boss strategies etc., feel free to mail me at chris5975@web.de.
PLEASE include "Transformers FAQ" in the subject line, or otherwise my filter
daemon will thrash your mail silly :-).

And PLEASE, read through the notes in front of each chapter. They clarify some
things that MIGHT arise. 

This FAQ is done by me (so far). Additional credit will be given where it is
due. The Cheat Codes come straight from the GameFAQs Transformers "Codes and
Secrets Page".

Feel free to download this FAQ and use it personally. If you want to post it in
it's entirety (with this message!) on your web page, please drop me an e-mail
at chris5975@web.de and include the line "Posting Permission" in the subject
field.

* 1.3. Version History *

- 1.0: Initial Release, including Level Walkthroughs, Character/Enemy lists,
       Minicon Guide, some Boss Strategies, Cheats

- 1.1: Notes on Veteran and Commander Difficulties, some clarifications/
       corrections.

- 1.2: Some restructuring (moved the FAQ FAR up)

* 1.4. Spacing and Length Check *

This guide is best viewed with a fixed-width font such as Courier New.
Just in case you use anything other than IE, here's a quick way to check
spacing and length.

         1         2         3         4         5         6         7
1234567890123456789012345678901234567890123456789012345678901234567890123456789

The tens should be directly over the 0's, and all should line up perfectly. If
not, you'd better adjust your font.

* 1.5. Things To Do *

- Find out exactly what minicon team adds which benefits
- Notes on higher difficulty levels

**********
* F.A.Q. *
**********

The most Frequently Asked Question (at least as my mail volume is concerned)
is: WHEN/HOW/WHERE CAN I FLY?

Read this:
You'll need the minicon SLIPSTREAM, which is to be found in the Mid-Atlantic
stage. It is the ONLY minicon in said stage, AND it has instructions on how
to use it (as have all minicons, if you didn't notice). And it allows you only
to glide. I will ignore any and all question partaining to this topic. It IS
pretty obvious, isn't it?

******************
* The Characters *
******************

* 3.1. Optimus Prime *

He's the boss of the Autobots, the mightiest warrior for the good cause.

His stats:
Attack : *****
Defense: ****-
Speed  : ***--
Power  : *****
(this translates to a maximum of 10 Minicon Power dots, see the "Minicon"
 section)

Optimus can transform into a truck. In this form he is pretty sluggish, but
when he picks up speed, he can steamroller clusters of enemies.
In Robot mode he is only marginally slower than Red Alert, but can't soak up
as much damage. In the later stages Optimus will be your 'bot of choice,
because later on minicon capacity WILL be a major factor in winning the game.

* 3.2. Red Alert *

Second-in-Command, he briefs Optimus when the boss is out and doing the
blasting.

His stats:
Attack : ****-
Defense: *****
Speed  : ****-
Power  : ****-
(translates to a maximum of 8 Minicon Power dots, see the "Minicon" section)

Red Alert doesn't pack quite the punch Optimus does, but he balances that
with a higher defense and a decent boost in speed. I used him most of the
time in my first playthrough and only in the later third of the game, when
juggling Minicons got tricky I ditched him in favor of Optimus.
His Vehicle form is pretty useful in any terrain, able to climb steep cliffs
with speed and ease, and being able to steamroller (or at least scatter) enemy
groups.

* 3.3. Hot Shot *

The young hot-head, the BEST there is - as he says :-)

His stats:
Attack : ***--
Defense: ***--
Speed  : *****
Power  : ****-
(translates to a maximum of 8 Minicon Power dots, see the "Minicon" section)

Hot Shot is extremely nimble and extremely fragile, at least in my hands.
It may be possible to employ him in a "commando" style of play, with the right
Minicon loadout, but I have only tested him in the first level and some Minicon
hunting and found him too fragile.
His vehicle form is a superfast sports car. Not good on rough terrain, but in
the open he can run away from any source of trouble.

* 3.4. Enemies! and how to beat them... *

Here's a short listing of the enemies, most with the names from the "Data
Cards" from the Extras Section. Included are some hints on how to put the hurt
on them.
"Found in" lists where they show up first time when doing no revisits.

- Small Grunts
  Found in: Amazon, Antarctica
  Threat  : nah, you kidding?
  Attacks : weak blasters
  How to beat: Point gun, pull trigger, done.

- Medium Grunts
  Found in: every level except Cybertron
  Threat  : in numbers they're ugly
  Attacks : Blasters, grenades (later)
  How to beat: Point gun, pull trigger, done. They take a few more hits
               though

- Medium Grunts w/ Shields
  Found in: Mid-Atlantic and afterwards.
  Threat  : medium to high, depending on numbers and commanders
  Attacks : Blasters, Grenades
  How to beat: First, get rid of their shields. Missiles/Grenades work fine.
               Then they're pretty weak. Avoid their grenades, though.

- Sarges/ Stealth Sarges
  Found in: Alaska onwards
  Threat  : high
  Attacks : Rocket, melee
  How to beat: They are nimble and attentive, and usually avoid missiles and
               grenades. So get them with blasters or arc guns. Their jumping
               melee attacks HURT. And later they get stealthy. You've been
               warned...

- Heavy Units
  Found in: Amazon onwards
  Threat  : high
  Attacks : Double missiles, Blasters
  How to beat: Stay away and have DEFLECTOR handy. Their missiles are easy to
               avoid, but their blaster fire can eat your energy quick. Close
               in they stomp the ground, knocking you over. So don't get close
               in.

- Commandos (the data cards call them "stealth guerilla"
  Found in: Deep amazon onwards
  Threat  : Ouch!
  Attacks : Melee slam, EMP guns
  How to beat: Area effect weapons help. Melee doesn't. They usually drain your
               power with their EMP guns, so take your distance, recharge and
               finish them off.

- Jet Sniper (those flying bots)
  Found in: Mid-Atlantic onwards
  Threat  : In packs, yes. Solo: umm... no
  Attacks : Blaster
  How to beat: AIRBURST makes pretty short work of them. They zip around and
               vary their height, but usually one solid hit with AIRBURST and
               they're toast.

- Shieldarms (pink, with white "shells" and twin laser cannon)
  Found in: Alaska onward
  Threat  : high (solo) to deadly (in packs)
  Attacks : Twin laser cannon
  How to beat: DEFLECTOR is your friend. Those suckers can unleash a hail of
               shots, so you either avoid or deflect it. They eat through your
               energy real quick. 

- Lightning Rod (red laser beam guys)
  Found in: mainly Pacific Islands, some in Antarctica
  Threat  : so-so
  Attacks : sensor beam that charges up and hurts
  How to beat: The bigger problem with these guys is the knockback. So either
               snipe them from FAR away or avoid their beams. Bring terrain
               between you and them and they can beam all they want :-)

- Spider Tanks
  Found in: Antarctica onwards
  Threat  : not that much
  Attacks : small blasters when moving, charge beam when "braced"
  How to beat: Unload heavy firepower their way and watch their pattern.

- Dropships
  Found in: Every level except Cybertron
  Threat  : for itself - none, depends on cargo
  Attacks : Cargo
  How to beat: Need heavy firepower to down, usually HAILSTORM missiles and
               a BIG blaster cannon. 


************
* Minicons *
************

I won't list where to find them here, but I will CAPITALIZE the names in the
Walkthrough, so if you need to know where a specific Minicon is, push CTRL-F,
enter the name and check the Caps check option (sorry, I only have the German
version of IE, so you need to figure out that bit yourself :-))

Power means the number of "dots" each minicon has. The more power, the more
dots. Add the dots to figure if you can cram all the minicons into your 'bot
of choice. Remember, Optimus has a maximum of 10 dots, Red Alert and Hot Shot
have 8 each, so you could add one 2-dot, two one-dot and one four-dot Minicon
into Hot Shot or two four-dot and two 1-dot (or any combination that totals
10) into Optimus Prime.

Minicons have their own power supply, so you don't need to worry about ammo.
Every minicon has an energy bar that decreases when you use it. When you stop
using it, it will recharge. Recharge time depends on the particular minicon
and synergy bonusses (if any).
Most sensor/shield minicons have a power toggle. You turn them on and they
operate until juice runs out, that is when they turn themself off and start to
recharge. Usually you can switch them on as soon as they have a bit of power
regained, but with some (mainly the Dash minicons or COMEBACK) you need to
fulfill special conditions (like going back to Autobot HQ or having ground
underneath your feet).

* 4.1. R1 Minicons (Blaster) *

Starting with the standard blaster and going right from there (push the right
directional key)

BLASTER
Power : n/a, basic built-in gun.
Fires a stream of bullets until empty. Minimal single shot damage,
minor damage if on autofire. Your basic pea shooter.

AFTERSHOCK (green)
Super Heavy Cannon
Power: ****
Charge-up cannon. Deals medium damage when single-fired, can be charged
up to tremendous levels. Don't get hit or your charge is wasted. Good range
and damage

CORONA (green)
Super Ribbon Beam
Power: ****
A cousin of the Lightning cannon, the Ribbon Beam family of guns immobilizes
a target and damages it. CORONA can get up to three targets in this fashion.
May be useful, but I stick to the Lightning cannon.

OVERWATCH (blue)
Impact Gun
Power: **--
A pretty handy weapon versus large clusters of enemies. It shoots a stream of
bullets that explode for splash damage on impact. Not that powerful, but a
nice fill-up if you go for a minicon synergy bonus and have too much high-power
stuff elsewhere. Good range, minor to moderate damage.

AURORA (blue)
Heavy Ribbon Beam
Power: **--
CORONA's smaller cousin. Captures up to two targets.

SKIRMISH (red)
Heavy Blaster
Power: *---
One of my early/midgame faves. Fires in bursts and deals moderate damage.
With an all-red team this increases to an impressive hail of bullets.
Moderate damage, but high volume of fire.

JUMPSTART (red)
Super Hvy Arc Gun
Power: ****
Too bad you get this thing near the end of the game. It dishes out damage in
buckets and can hit up to five targets. The ultimate crowd buster, especially
versus light enemies. Shields don't offer protection against this. Only
drawback: It drains power real fast.

SPARKJUMP (violet)
Heavy Arc Gun
Power: **--
JUMPSTART's smaller cousin, hitting up to three targets. Pro's and con's are
the same.

FIREFIGHT (yellow)
Super Heavy Blaster
Power: **--
This is AFTERSHOCK's smaller cousin. Same mode of operation, not quite the
damage potential.

* 4.2. R2 Minicons (Secondary/Support) *

Starting with SLAPSHOT and going right.

SLAPSHOT (red)
Grenade Launcher
Power: **--
Shoots a round grenade. Range is pretty short, but the grenades bounce and
roll down slopes. The blast radius can catch about four or five medium enemies
and the grenades are wonderful versus bunkers and turrets. Beware: The blast
can hurt you too. Pretty useful, epsecially if your power limit gets too high.

LOCK-ON (red)
Homing Missile
Power: **--
Your first minicon. This baby is pretty handy throughout the game. The damage
is enough to take out small or medium enemies in one or two hits and it has
the best range for quite some time (until the sniper Minicon is aquired)

HIGHGEAR (red)
Dash
Power: *---
(Appears under L2 Minicons too)
Enables you to dash once in robot or vehicle mode and needs to recharge
afterwards. Handy if you prefer the hit-and-run style.

SMACKDOWN (red)
Super Melee Booster
Power: **--
(Appears under L2 Minicons too)
I try to avoid melee combat like the plague, so I can't vouch for the
usefulness of this gizmo. It supposedly maxes your hand-to-hand damage.

AIRBURST (violet)
Flak Cannon
Power: **--
One of the most useful gadgets in the game. Not only can you frag those
annoying fliers and dropships, you can also use this as a crowd buster.
It does moderate damage in a big burst and will not hurt you, even if you
are smack in the middle of an explosion. Good range and low power make this
one of my best-liked toys.

WATCHDOG (violet)
Limpet Mines (whatever that may be)
Power: **--
WATCHDOG can be a real livesaver in some boss/bunker battles. They stick to
enemies, can be detonated by shooting them and have a delay timer. I like
them, at least more than CLAYMORE. 

DISCORD (violet)
Scrambler
Power: **--
Utterly useless. This baby should make your enemies attack themselves, but
after having tried this on every enemy type without success I parked it FAR
away. Bad range, bad power-to-usefulness ration (ONE shot per charge) and
sloooow recharge time make this a real waste. Too bad, the idea sounded
promising.

FULLSPEED (yellow)
Super Dash
Power: **--
(Appears under L2 Minicons too)
Nice one. You get three boosts in robot and vehicle mode, AND get one jet boost
in glider mode (with SLIPSTREAM) before recharging. Makes reaching some faraway
places easier.

FLASHBANG (green)
Rocket Launcher
Power: **--
Fires two dumbfire missiles (no homing) straight ahead. More damage than
LOCK-ON.

KNOCKDOWN (green)
EMP Field
Power: ****
This one could be a lifesaver, were it not for the high power cost. KNOCKDOWN
emits a powerful wave of EMP energy, destroying smaller enemies and knocking
back/down larger foes. Too bad it won't work on Heavy Units...

LOOKOUT (green)
Sniper Rifle
Power: ****
Yes, it IS a sniper rifle, and yes, you can headshoot-instantkill enemies with
it. It adds a third zoom level to your first-person view. The range is
awesome, and gets better when coupled with RANGEFINDER. Good one.

PRESSUREPOINT (green)
Melee Booster
Power: *---
(Appears under L2 Minicons too)
I try to avoid melee combat like the plague, so I can't vouch for the
usefulness of this gizmo. It supposedly boosts your hand-to-hand damage.

RANGEFINDER (green)
Range Enhancer
Power: **--
(Appears under L2 Minicons too)
I didn't find it until near the game's end, so I can't tell how much range is
boosted, but other people swear by it.

TRACTOR (green)
Tractorbeam
Power: *---
Nice gimmick, nothing more. I'm too busy SHOOTING my enemies to swing them
around or drop them from cliffs.

FAILSAFE (green)
Heavy Homing Missile
Power: ****
Too bad you can't combo THAT monster easily with one of the green blasters.
It delivers accurate death over great distances.

HAILSTORM (blue)
Heavy Cluster Rockets
Power: ****
Four dumbfire (NO homing) missiles. Good for massive damage over mid- to long
ranges. Blast hurts you too.

CLAYMORE (blue)
Proximity Mines
Power: *---
Too bad this doesen't distinguish between friend or foe, otherwise it would
have been much more useful. Otherwise, use it for retreating battles.

TWISTER (blue)
Vortex Projector
Power: ****
Too cumbersome to lug around. The range is pretty pitiful, and it won't work
on large foes (bosses included). Invest into something other (perhaps
HAILSTORM)

SHOCKPUNCH (blue)
Combat Field
Power: **--
Coats you in an energy field that damages enemies on contact. Too bad it gets
deactivated when you get knocked down, otherwise it would have made the top
gear versus Sarge-class bots.

COVERT (blue)
Stealth Field
Power: ****
(Appears under L2 Minicons too)
Makes you invisible. May be useful when used by Hot Shot on a commando op :-).

* 4.3. L1 Minicons (Armor/Movement) *

Starting with SAFEGUARD and going right.

SAFEGUARD (red)
Armor
Power: *---
When you get it, it's the minicon of choice. It absorbs a small amount of
damage from each hit and is always active. Useful until SLIPSTREAM appears.

COMEBACK (violet)
Reactivator
Power: ****
Instant extra-life. Too bad you get it when you must choose between this and
SLIPSTREAM. Can be handy in boss battles with no difficult terrain from the
last savepoint. COMEBACK works only once, afterwards you need to go back to
Autobot HQ to recharge it.

BULLETPROOF (green)
Heavy Armor
Power: **--
Better protection than SAFEGUARD. Useful early on, if you happen to find it.

BUILDUP (green)
Auto-Repair
Power: **--
One of the most useful Minicons, especially in the last boss fight. BUILDUP
is always active and regenerates your health at a slow, but steady pace.
Don't bet on it to keep you alive, you need to do some dodging, but used
in conjunction with a hit-and-run style BUILDUP will do fine.

STRONGHOLD (blue)
Super Armor
Power: ****
This makes you into a tank. You can withstand enormous punishment, but you'll
get it much too late for it to be of any use.

HIGHJUMP (blue)
Boost Jump
Power: *---
This is neccesary for some jump'n'run passages in the later part of the game,
and it can be useful in minicon hunting.

* 4.4. L2 Minicons (Support) *

Starting with HIGHGEAR and going right.

HIGHGEAR (red)
see above, under R2 minicons

SMACKDOWN (red)
see above, under R2 minicons

SHEPHERD (violet)
Mini-Con Sensor
Power: **--
Your best friend in minicon hunting. It darkens the surrounding landscape and
marks every minicon and datacon with a bright blip you can see through
intervening terrain and structures. Size of the blip shows distance. Neat and
VERY helpful to get the hidden ones.

DEFLECTOR (yellow)
Energon Shield
Power: **--
One of my favorites. This surrounds you with a 360-degree beam coat. Most
enemies use beam and blaster weapons as their main guns, so this is a must have
for most missions, especially for Alaska and beyond. Duration is ok too.

FULLSPEED (yellow)
see above, under R2 minicons

PRESSUREPOINT (green)
see above, under R2 minicons

RANGEFINDER (green)
see above, under R2 minicons

KICKBACK (green)
Reflection Shield
Power: ****
Were it not for the heavy power cost, this would be the shield of choice.
It reflects incoming bullets in a random direction, making it an ideal assault
accessory when you're in the midst of your foes. Too bad the time you get out
of your charge is so short :-).

SHOCKPUNCH (blue)
see above, under R2 minicons

SHIELDWALL (blue)
Ballistic Shield
Power: **--
This is DEFLECTOR's cousin, only this one protects versus missiles and
grenades.

HAWKEYE (blue)
Energon Vision
Power: *---
The Transformers equivalent to thermal optic goggles, this one shows the
Energon signature of an enemy, even through walls or bad lighting. Sweet, but
exchange for SHEPHERD for serious minicon hunting.

COVERT (blue)
see above, under R2 minicons

* 4.5. Minicon Team Combos *

- 2 yellow minicons - yields the most Energon bonus
- 4 minicons (any color) provides higher energy recharge.

*** maybe more to come ***

**********
* Levels *
**********

I'll refer to the glowing things that contain minicons and datacons as "glows"
or beacons, so just don't get confused.
You'll get mission briefings from either Optimus Prime (if you play Red Alert
or Hot Shot) or Red Alert (if you play Prime). For simplicity's sake, when
referring to the caller, I'll use the term CO (communications officer). Less
typing that way :-).

A note on SECOND/THIRD VISIT headers: These apply to level revisits AFTER you
have found certain minicons. Check the Minicon listing in front of each level
walkthrough to see what neccesitates the revisit. Usually it involves
SLIPSTREAM or HIGHJUMP, though. 

This walkthrough is for RECRUIT difficulty. 

Veteran difficulty introduces more enemies (as if the hordes later on weren't
enough) that can take a little more punishment.

Commander difficulty adds a LOT more enemies, they do more damage across the
board and can take bucketfuls. Imagine Small Grunts with the stamina of
Mediums. Mediums can take two or three homing missiles before blowing up, and
Heavy Units are damn tough, like "Boss tough". Go figure. Not only that, the
designers even switched the minicon locations, so you can't simply say "ok,
only this minicon and I wipe the floor with them", since you don't know where
that particular minicon parks. Good luck man.


* 5.1. Amazon *

Minicons to find: 9
- LOCK-ON
- PRESSUREPOINT
- SAFEGUARD
- DEFLECTOR
- CLAYMORE
- FLASHBANG
-----------> after getting SLIPSTREAM
- HAILSTORM
- TRACTOR
- FIREFIGHT

Datacons to find: 13

Mission Summary: Follow the tutorial instructions and reach the top of the
mountain.

After watching the gorgeous CG sequence, move your 'bot forward until your
Intercom beeps. Accept the call, listen what your CO has to tell you and do
as he says. Use the first few moments to familiarize yourself with movement
and shooting. Better now than in the heat of battle :-).
Halfway up the cliff you'll get another Intercom call. Answer it and get ready
for your first fight. You can easily snipe the lone Decepticlone from where you
got the call by switching into recon mode (Circle button) and aligning the
target sights until they turn red. Push R1 and see the debris fly.
Notice the glowing ball the decepticlone dropped? Energon. Energon is your
friend. Collect all you can get. Head further up the cliff until you get
another call. You'll fight more 'Clones and find your first minicon, LOCK-ON.
Equip it and go on.

The next objective (and an impressive landmark) is the ruined temple dead
ahead. Get rid of (or evade) the 'Clones along the way and activate the save
point/warp gate. You'll respawn here if you get yourself killed. Cross the
bridge. After crossing the bridge, it's time for a small detour. Follow the
bank of the river and head LEFT instead of straight ahead. You should notice
a glow between the trees. Go there and grab your next Minicon: PRESSUREPOINT.
Since you don't have anything there (yet), put him on and go to the temple.
Try to head for the save point (the pillar of light should be easy to spot
through the trees and you can snipe away at two 'Clones guarding the entrance.
Save, enter and clean the house. Try to stay near the entrance and let the
enemies come to you. After blasting to bits any and all who oppose you, enter
the Temple proper.

There is one minicon (SAFEGUARD) in the middle of the courtyard, and two
datacons are to be found. The easy to find one rests on top of the temple,
simply climb the broken walls and make your way across the top until you reach
it. The second one is a little harder to get. From where you picked up the last
datacon, turn around and go back the way you came, until you stand next to this
pillar-thing where one guard was patrolling. Look below and you should see
a faint glow coming from a small alcove on the inner courtyard wall. If you see
it you'll know how to get there. Simply drop down one ledge and move until you
are above the alcove. Drop down another ledge and you should have your next
datacon. Leave the temple for your next mission objective. You'll need to
repeat the whole climbing and jumping part until you reach the point where
you found the first datacon, then jump down and follow the path next to the
waterfall, up to another glow. You'll get another datacon. Not too far off,
on the same side of the river, nestled between some trees, you should see some
'Clones guarding a glowing something. Get closer and you'll discover two
datacons in close proximity. After picking them up, head towards the waterfall
again. Make your way slowly across the bridge, getting rid of 'Clones along the
way. Notice a beacon to the left. 
Save your game and note the path winding up that hill. Transform and roll out, 
like the boss said :-). Stop on top of that hill and line up your sights with
the very obvious ramp. Transform and floor it. After crossing the first ravine,
stop and make your way to the left, through the enemy-infested woods, for
another datacon. Get back to the path and cruise along. You'll come upon a
fallen tree where the 'Clones stage a small ambush.
Get rid of them, transform and take the next jump. Fight off the 'Clones and
follow the path up another steep hilltop. Again, aim for a good run and drive
down the hill at full speed for a tricky double jump. Don't go off the gas.
Afterwards, use the Deep Ravine save and get the minicon (DEFLECTOR) nearby.
I suggest using it, because you'll need every bit of protection you can get.

Next up is a small detour. From the Deep Ravine save point, cross the ravine
and move on to the next one, but don't jump. Instead, look right and down.
You should see a grassy patch near the bottom of the ravine. Go there and
look around. You should notice a cave. Inside is CLAYMORE. After getting him,
make your way back towards the Deep Ravine save and go on.

(thanks to samuraa2002 for the correction when to get CLAYMORE)

Up the mountain we go!
Find your way up the mountainside. Hint: Check for enemies. Where they can go,
you can go too. About halfway up you'll encounter another small vehicle jump.
Floor the gas, but be prepared for a full stop after you cleared the gap. DON'T
TRANSFORM in midair, you'll end up flying straight into the closest ravine.
You'll get another call from your boss. Proceed with caution from here on.
Slowly make your way along the ruin, to the left. You can surprise the spider
tank that is waiting for you a little higher up. Take it out with the help of
your new minicon toy (and avoid it's beam weapon at all costs) and use the
save.
Use the small step to get to the next level. As soon as you get there, you'll
get a surprise visit by Cyclonus and a Heavy Unit. Use the DEFLECTOR to absorb
most of Heavy Unit's blasts and try to avoid it's homing missiles. After
beating it, you'll be treated to another CG sequence and be returned to base.
Return to Amazon/Mountain Ruin and search for a minicon (FLASHBANG) directly
below the save point. You might have found it on your way up already, but if
not, don't forget it. After that, go back to HQ.

Result after first visit: 
Minicons: 6/9, Datacons: 6/13

SECOND VISIT:

I suggest you use the Mountain Ruin savepoint as the base for your scouting.
Not only can you see most of the beacons from here, but you have a superb
liftoff point.

Look for a blip on a very obvious mesa. Lift off and glide over there. Don't
bother fighting, just drop onto that mesa, snatch the minicon (HAILSTORM)
and be off. From there, turn a little right and glide off that mesa. You
should see another beacon through the treetops. Drop there and grab the
minicon hidden there. It's TRACTOR.
Find yourself a warp gate, warp back to HQ and return to Mountain Ruin.
Now launch yourself and try to reach the far side of the level. Use the "hang
time" to look around and note easy-to spot beacons. Fly around and collect
stuff. Find FIREFIGHT on the right side of the level.

Go to the Deep Ravine savepoint. Cross the ravine and head right (when facing
the save across the ravine). Line your sights up with the waterfall ahead, 
jump off and glide along the ravine. Try to hang left so you don't smash into
the walls. Try to navigate onto that ledge and get a datacon from inside the
cave. Afterwards, return to Mountain Ruin and continue your search.

The next datacon is directly across the savepoint, on the far side of the
level nestled between some trees. You should see it as a faint glow when near
the Mountain Ruin save point.

After getting that get back to Autobot HQ. The only thing left here are some
more datacons which can be easily found with SHEPHERD later on.

Result after second visit:
Minicons: 9/9, Datacons 9/13

THIRD VISIT - picking up the pieces

Warp to Mountain Ruin with SHEPHERD equipped. Push L2 and have a look around.
The missing datacons should be easy to spot. Go there and collect them.
To get the two datacons near the Mountain Ruin savepoint, you need to jump off
the ruin and glide a little to the right, before turning back and going down.
Your flight path should resemble a "U". (Damn, I hate my lacking english
skills).

Result after last visit:
Minicons: 9/9, Datacons 13/13

* 5.2. Antarctica *

Minicons to find: 10
- HAWKEYE
- LOOKOUT
- WATCHDOG
- SLAPSHOT
- HIGHGEAR
- BUILDUP
- SPARKJUMP
-----------> after getting SLIPSTREAM
- SMACKDOWN
- COMEBACK
------------> after getting HIGHJUMP
- SHOCKPUNCH

Datacons to find: 6

From here on, you'll be accompanied by a permanent minicon partner that enables
you to execute slow motion moves by pressing the Square button. Watch out,
since powerlinking can drain your health real quick.

After watching the CG sequence, turn around and walk past the savepoint for the
first datacon in Antarctica. It's hidden behind a small rock spire, directly
behind the save point. Then proceed along the canyon. A few steps in, you'll
receive a call by your CO. Answer and proceed. When the canyon widens, slow
down and switch to recon mode. Here you'll get to know a new enemy type, the
sentry drone. If their beam hits you, they'll raise an alarm an you'll get
swarmed by 'Clones. Better to shoot them from afar. They are pretty fragile,
so one solid blaster salvo should take them out. Shortly thereafter you'll come
across a river filled with ice floes. Cross the river by jumping fron one to
the next. Be sure to use running jumps, because the gaps are fairly large for
the small jump capacity. After crossing the river, head up the rocky spire and
get your first Antarctica Minicon: HAWKEYE. It makes finding your way through
the poor visibility much easier, and if you take care and snipe away the
drones, you can safely exchange DEFLECTOR for it.
Drop down and head for the save point. Answer the call and go ahead.

The crevasse field is one of the tricker passages. But you'll simple need to
push through for now. Use the distant save point as a landmark and head there.
Ignore the tempting beacons for and use the icebreaker save point as your base
for minicon hunting.
On your way there you'll encounter some vicious fighting, but the small canyons
and rocks provide excellent cover. Simply don't get surrounded and you should
it to the icebreaker save point in no time.

When you have arrived at the Icebreaker, you should take a look around. There
are no less than four beacons in sight. One on the ship itself, one to the left
in the distance, near the water. One a little further right from the last and
finally another we can't reach yet, it's up on a ledge.
To get the Icebreaker beacon you'll need to employ a technique called the
"Transform jump". Look for a small ramp near the beacon. Take some distance and
transform into vehicle mode. Drive towards the ramp at full speed and transform
in mid-air. If done right, you should land, more or less elegantly, on the aft
deck to get the next minicon (LOOKOUT).
The beacon next to the water contains a datacon. Simply head for it and try not
to fall into the water. Nearby you should see a Spider Tank guarding another
beacon. Take out the tank and get your next minicon, WATCHDOG. 
Return to the Icebreaker and head right, towards the smoke.

You'll notice that you have to fight more Heavy Units by now. If you are calm
enough, snipe their heads off, otherwise let them have your missiles/blaster.

When you arrive at the smoke's origin, you'll find a host of 'Clones, augmented
by a Heavy Unit and a Spider Tank. Take them out and investigate the crashed
plane. Your reward: A call from the boss and a new minicon (SLAPSHOT).
Head back to the Icebreaker. Halfway back you should see an obvious ramp
leading to the left. Take it and answer the boss's call. Make your way to
the camp and flash all enemies you can train your guns on. Make sure you access
the save point and check your minicon loadout. You'll want to have either
LOCK-ON or FLASHBANG and DEFLECTOR equipped.

You might want to sneak around the edges of the camp and try to collect the
mini-/datacons located in the buildings. If you get too close to the center of
the camp, you'll trigger the boss battle, so be careful. But you CAN obtain
most of the stuff BEFORE actually fighting the boss. Just be prepared.

Once you reach the center of the camp, you'll get attacked by STARSCREAM.
Refer to the Boss Section for tips on how to beat him. 

After kicking his tin butt, you'll end up in HQ. Use the Camp Savepoint to
return and plunder.
Take SLAPSHOT with you, level the buildings and find:
HIGHGEAR, BUILDUP and SPARKJUMP, as well as a bunch of datacons. 

Result after first visit
Minicons: 7/10, Datacons: 6/6

SECOND VISIT

Now we'll get the most obvious minicon we left out earlier. Warp to the Ice
Breaker save point and head for the beacon that sits comfortably up on one
outcropping directly ahead. Move around the left hand side of this ledge and
you should see a nice, even ramp ahead. Go up there and glide across. Your
reward: SMACKDOWN.
Afterwards, head over to the Icebreaker again. Enter the aft deck via transform
jump and climb up the superstructure. Take out the lone Spider Tank that is
guarding a high ledge near the ship's prow. Go there, climb the cliff and glide
over to the island. Get the COMEBACK minicon, take out the defenders and glide
back to the Ice Breaker. Warp back to Autobot HQ, you're done here for now.
The last minicon will have to wait until you got HIGHJUMP.

Result after second visit
Minicons: 9/10, Datacons 6/6

THIRD VISIT

Use the Ice Canyon waypoint and make your way to the river with ice floes, but
don't cross it. Instead, take a left until you find a small canyon with a
beacon, guarded by a beam trooper. Dispose of them and ascend the left snow
tower with HIGHJUMP. Then hop across to the glowing beacon and snatch
SHOCKPUNCH. Get home to Autobot HQ. 

Result after third visit:
Minicons: 10/10, Datacons 6/6

* 5.3. Deep Amazon *

Minicons to find: 8
- SKIRMISH
- KNOCKDOWN
- RANGEFINDER
- AIRBURST
-------------> after getting SLIPSTREAM:
- TWISTER
- COVERT
- OVERWATCH
- SHIELDWALL

Datacons to find: 7

You start on a hilltop. Look around and notice a beacon on one of the ledges.
We'll get that as soon as we are finished with the next stage.
Make a few tentative steps forward and receive another call. 
Follow the path down until you reach a small jungle village. In there you'll
meet a small force of 'Clones, backed up by a pretty well hidden Heavy Unit and
SKIRMISH, your next Blaster upgrade. Nearby you should find another beacon.
Head towards it and find a datacon and a new enemy type, the Commando 'Clones.
These annyoing buggers usually move on all fours and hide pretty well in the
high grass. When attacking, they get on their hind legs and fire an EMP burst
that INSTANTLY drains your minicon energy. Then they move in close and clobber
you.
Make your way to the savepoint and look around. The Sun temple has two VERY
obvious beacons, one is gliding around on a dropship (you need the glider to
get it) and if you turn right, you'll see another pretty obvious one.
The next leg of your journey is a straightforward assault. The temple is
guarded by artillery turrets. I prefer to blast them with FLASHBANG. Cross
the rope bridge and prepare for some frenzied shooting. You'll get swarmed by
enemies, but with your new toys, it shouldn't be that hard. 
Anyways, after clearing the area in front of the temple, it's time to hunt some
beacons.

First, use the save. Then travel around the temple's base. On the rear side,
you'll find a datacon, nestled between a stand of trees. Look around and you
should note two more beacons on your right hand side, but on the same piece of
land you're on. Go there. The closer beacon contains a Datacon guarded by two
Commandos. If you don't want to get badly mauled, just drive in, snatch the
beacon and be gone, heading through the woods towards the more distant one,
which will yield another datacon. Continue into the dense forest. You should
make out another glow, surrounded by huts. Prepare for some vicious fighting.
Your reward: A datacon and KNOCKDOWN near the riverbank. Time to show them
Commandos a dose of their own medicine, right?
Return to the Sun Temple. Time to get CYCLONUS - and new stuff.

Move towards the temple's left side and you should notice some stone debris
lying around for you to climb up. Make your way up the steps, collect one lone
datacon along the way. You'll end up in front of one entryway. From here on,
make your way slowly into the pyramid and search THOROUGHLY every nook and
cranny. You should find RANGEFINDER, the weapons range enhancer, It's hidden
in an alcove after the first big chamber. When you have reached the
antechamber (the one with the savepoint), save, note the high-up hallway in the
corner opposite the savepoint. Right next to it is a hollow tube. Enter and
push X. You'll ride an elevator up to the top and face CYCLONUS. See the Boss
section on tips how to beat him. After the winning CG and the automatic warp
back to HQ, return and get your reward: AIRBURST, a very handy flak cannon.
DON'T use it on the dropship carrying that minicon, or it will vanish. Go back
down and warp to MID-ATLANTIC.

Result after first visit:
Minicons: 4/8, Datacons: 6/7

SECOND VISIT

The Antechamber savepoint makes a good starting point for exploring.
First order of business is the minicon being carried by that dropship.
Use the elevator up to the top of the Sun Temple and wait until the dropship
gets close. Best time to start is when the dropship has moved over the
waterfall and starts to descend. Anticipate where it will go and intercept it.
Do not chase it, try to intersect your flight path with that of the dropship.
Glide onto it and grab the minicon (TWISTER). Don't be disheartened, it may
take a few tries.

After getting TWISTER, stay on the dropship and have it carry you around. Note
the beacon on the far side of the level. When you get close to the Sun Temple
again, hop off the Dropship and glide towards the huge waterfall behind the
temple. Smack in the middle you should see another beacon. Grab it and add
COVERT to your arsenal. Get back up the Sun Temple and fly off to the right, to
the island farthest away from you. It has a beacon on it's highest peak. It's
OVERWATCH, guarded by a host of Commandos. Just grab your stuff and be on your
way, because that battle can get tough.

Make your way back to the Hill-Top savepoint. Remember that beacon up on a
ledge close by? Simply look for some steps to ascend and glide over the small
space. Grab the minicon (SHIELDWALL) and warp back to Autobot HQ.
The last datacon can only be obtained with HIGHJUMP, so no use hanging around.

Result after second visit:
Minicons: 8/8, Datacons: 6/7

THIRD VISIT

Warp to the Antechamber savepoint. I used Hot Shot for the next stunt, but
it MIGHT work for Optimus/Red Alert as well. Stand in front of the high-up
hallway, HIGHJUMP and transform when at the highest point of the jump. With
a little luck and a running start you might end up in that hallway. Explore
and snatch the last datacon for this level.

Result after third visit:
Minicons 8/8, Datacons 7/7

* 5.4. Mid-Atlantic *

Minicons to find: 1
- SLIPSTREAM

Datacons to find: 1

One of my favorite stages in this game.
The medium troopers start sporting shields in this mission, but with LOOKOUT or
area-effect weapons, you'll get rid of them quite easily. Just prepare for
harder fights from now on. And they start tossing grenades. So if you see
something round and dark coming your way, dash or strafe out of the way.
These eggs HURT.

The first part is pretty straightforward. Make your way across the island,
thrash your foes and get on top of the cliff, where you'll find your next
minicon: SLIPSTREAM, the glider wings.

Before going head-on with TIDAL WAVE, the boss of this stage, I suggest we warp
back to Autobot HQ and plunder as much of the other drop zones as possible.
Every drop-zone will include a "second visit" header, where you can quickly
check up on missing mini- and datacons.

So, back from plundering? Good. Let's get that huge piece o' junk called TIDAL
WAVE. I suggest you pack AIRBURST and SPARKJUMP for the first leg of the trip.
First, make your way back up that cliff. Then look for the glowing beacon
ahead and glide over there. Pick up the datacon and look for the next closest
island. Make your way across the islands, always trying to get the highest
point for jumpoff. Don't worry if you drop a little short, usually you have
shallow water. Only the last glide to the savepoint can get a bit tricky.
Try not to steer to much, aim for the lowest leftmost part of the island and
you should find a nice, cozy landing spot. Save and prepare for boarding.
You might want to have some hefty punch loaded, the next area involves many
enemie hordes. I packed SLIPSTREAM (obviously), DEFLECTOR, OVERWATCH and
HAILSTORM, but you might need other combinations, depending on your 'bot of
choice. Anyways, fly over and "swab the deck". You'll need to destroy all
enemies, including the Flying Snipers, then a new gang will come up via the
elevator. Kick their tin butts and use the elevator down one level.
Activate the save point and annihilate the horde of troopers waiting on the
lower deck. OVERWATCH works wonders here :-). Enter the lit area and turn
either left or right, moving past the "pillars". You should come to another
lift. Take it up and clean the command room you enter. Follow the corridor
(and watch out for a Commando in ambush) until you reach an exit.
Turn either left or right (depending on where you exited) and you should
notice a faint blue glow coming from a set of openings near you. Enter one of
those and make your way through the corridors and halls. 
HINT: Look for a big door with a Decepticon-Logo on it.
Look for the switch RIGHT next to the door and take up the lift to a room with
a savepoint and double doors. In the ensuing fight, you'll get to know the new
Sarge enemy type. They coordinate the medium troops, and they have a nasty
habit of jumping at you and smacking you silly. Clean the room, save and
prepare. Equip your favourite long-range weapons and use the lift behind the
double doors. Watch the CG sequence (stop drooling already!) and get ready.
Bossfight: TIDAL WAVE. See the Boss Section for details on how to beat him.

Result after first visit:
Minicons: 1/1, Datacons: 1/1

* 5.5. Alaska *

Minicons to find: 5
- AURORA
- BULLETPROOF
- DISCORD
- HIGHJUMP
- KICKBACK
Datacons to find: 9

Before doing anything else, climb up the incline near the starting point.
Look around and line up your sights with the island off the shore. Jump off
and glide over there. Don't fiddle with the steering too much, you will make
it easily to the island. Pick up AURORA and return to shore. 

Ignore your CO's orders for a moment and head along the shore. Along the way
you'll get to know a new enemy type, Shieldarms. These suckers can transform
into wheels and cover great distances pretty quick, and they have two quickfire
laser cannons with which to unleash a deadly hailstorm of fire. I suggest
having DEFLECTOR with you. As you travel along the shore, you should spot a
beacon ahead, sitting on a peninsula. Keep a little distance to the waterline,
since the shore gets pretty steep and if you fall into the water, there's no
way back up on land. After weathering the assault of a troop of medium grunts
and a Sarge, you can lay your hands on BULLETPROOF.
Return to your starting point and head for the lake/canyon. Don't get killed
along the way. As soon as you can, activate the Canyon Mouth savepoint.
Receive a call from your CO and make your way through the canyon until you
reach a small bowl-shaped valley. Here you have one of the first oppotunities
to easily take out a dropship :-). After clearing the valley, Look for a
pretty obvious ramp. Across from it there's a small ravine. Jump off the ramp
and try to glide over there. You most likely won't do an elegant touchtdown,
but try to get there. Follow the ravine and get rid of all the enemies along
the way. You'll reach another small valley, with a beacon dead center. It's
DISCORD. Then walk around the edge of the valley you're in and look for a
beacon on one of the ledges nearby. Climb up a ramp across from the beacon and
glide over there. That will net you a datacon. Walk along the ledge you're on
and you'll end up in yet another bowl-shaped valley with a beacon on a ledge
a little below you. Jump or glide there and get yet another datacon. There
should be a canyon nearby (probably with a host of enemies) that will lead you
to the Box Canyon Savepoint.

A few feet past the savepoint, you'll notice a pillar with convenient steps
etched into it. Jump up on the ledge close by and prepare for a somewhat tricky
jumping passage. First, make your way along the ledge and cross the canyon by
jumping from one ledge to the other. Make sure you try to take the shortest
leap possible, since you don't have the power jump upgrade (yet).
When on the left-hand ledge, make your way slowly ahead and watch for a gap in
the ledge. Jump across it and go on, jumping on the next higher platform. Then
cross the valley again. Make a few steps forward and jump across the valley yet
again. From the outcropping you're on right now you should see a steep incline.
Jump/glide over there and ascend it. You know you are on the right track when
you get a call by your CO.
Be prepared for some vicious fighting, since the enemy has terrain advantage
and has dug himself in. Behind the enemy lines you'll find HIGHJUMP, a
mandatory minicon. Without it, you'll not get much further in this level.
Equip him, then look for a well-concealed cave entrance. Use the savepoint and
get ready for one hell of a climbing tour. The place to start is directly
across from the savepoint, make your way slowly and carefully up the inside
walls, until you come upon a fallen rock spire. Jump onto it and slowly creep
over it. Enter the cave nearby and follow the tunnel into a cave with two
exits. The exit to your right has a new datacon, the one to your left splits
into two tunnels. Take the left one to find the next datacon, and the right one
to end up in a small tunnel with platforms along both walls and water at the
bottom. Jump across the gap and continue up along the wall. You should end up
in front of a new tunnel entrance. Follow the tunnel which will deposit you
back in the main cave. DO NOT try to cross over to the tempting beacon. You'll
need the glider for that. Instead go where that grenade tossing medium trooper
was and exit the cave. Receive your CO's call and use the save as soon as you
can. Then warp back to Autobot HQ and get SLIPSTREAM. Head back into the cave,
Glide over to that beacon you saw earlier and get the measly datacon it holds.
Either glide back or fall down to the cavern floor (and use the warp gate to
get back up to the Cliff-Top savepoint :-)). Anyways, you'll need to re-equip
HIGHJUMP and climb along the right-hand path until you reach a small valley.
At the valley's entrance, you'll find KICKBACK, and further in you'll spot
another beacon, but before you can reach it, you'll get a surprise visit by
STARSCREAM - again. Afterwards, you'll be warped back to Autobot HQ. Return
to Alaska and get the beacon - yet another datacon . Be prepared to face
Stealth-Sarges who might knock you off that ledge you'll have to climb to get
back to the valley. Afterwards, return to HQ.

Now might be a good time to return to Antarctica and Deep Amazon to get some
missing stuff. See the THIRD VISIT Headers on what to find.

Result after first visit:
Minicons: 5/5 , Datacons: 6/9

SECOND VISIT

Not much to do. Use SHEPHERD to locate the last missing datacons and be done.
Use Canyon Mouth savepoint to start. One is deeply hidden in the Mountain
Caves. Look for another exit from the ravine with the water at the bottom.

Result after last visit:
Minicons: 5/5 , Datacons: 9/9


* 5.6. Starship *

Minicons to find: 1
- AFTERSHOCK

Datacons to find: 10 (second half of the level)

Get out your favourite assault loadout and enter the level. Your first task is
to get to the bridge. You don't need to worry about missing anything critical,
just make your way ahead and try to stay on top of your enemies. Make your way
through the first enemy-infested compartment. Look for ramps that lead up.
Sooner or later you'll come near a switch. Getting there will trigger an scene
showing reinforcements approaching. Get rid of them too and use the lift they
came with. After you get up the ramp, you'll notice a hallway with a very
distinct doorway. You'll have to open this door (and a couple more) to get on.
Behind every door you'll be greeted by some more enemies, including a troop of
Shieldarms. Hopefully you either have DASH enabled or carry DEFLECTOR,
otherwise you'll get clobbered in a heartbeat. After that, you'll have to face
off versus a Heavy Unit and two commandos, After this slugfest, you'll be
greeted by two Stealth Sarges, a savepoint and the lift to the bridge. If you
didn't have it already, equip HIGHJUMP and proceed past the guards. Get
AFTERSHOCK. To leave the bridge, you need to use the switch near the door.
But you won't get far, because Starscream pays a visit.
After the rought and tumble CG, you need to get back to the aft of the ship,
which is now the "up" side. Luckily, you don't need to worry about enemies,
just the terrain to deal with.

You start in the area just behind the bridge. Make your way up (use an
emergency light as landmark) and use the bridge lift as steps. Now use the
Datacons as waypoints to travel up the inside hull. If possible, close the
blast doors you pass, so you don't fall ALL the way back down. Thankfully,
the controls allow for balancing along small ledges, so you can use the door
frames as walkways. The next "big" landmark is the lift that brought the
support troops in earlier. Operate it and go "up" one level.

This next bit will be a bit more tricky, because it involves a few more
"running jumps". First, leave the lift for the opening with the orange lights
behind it. Hop up the wall to the datacon ahead. Operate the switch and use the
elevator to get ahead - sideways :-) Then carefully cross the gap and pick up
the datacon in the dropship. then cross the next gap and enter the next
compartment and make your way up the ramp in there, towards the next datacon.
Keep left and walk up the ledge along the wall, where the datacon beacon shines
down. Turn around, face the datacon and jump up on it's ledge to take it.
Go ahead, jump up the steps and look for the next datacon. Jump down to where
it rests and make your way across the gaps. Careful, you CAN fall down there.
You'll end up in front of another dropship, behind which the next datacon
beckons. Cross the gaps (the one with the too) and jump up the wall for the
datacon. Your CO will call you when near the exit. To get the last datacon,
use the ledge you're on. Turn left and walk slowly all the way to the far side
of the room where the datacon rests on some tech bit. Make your way carefully
back to the exit and jump out of the ship. Use the save. Prepare to fight
Starscream again. See the Boss Section on tips to beat him.

Result on first visit:
Minicons 1/1, Datacons 10/10

* 5.7. Pacific Islands *

Minicons to find: 6
- SHEPHERD
- FAILSAFE
- FULLSPEED
- STRONGHOLD
- JUMPSTART
- CORONA
Datacons to find: 12

This is it. The final battle for the last couple of minicons. Prepare to fight
everything Megatron has to offer. Note: Most of this levels' datacons are
hidden in barracks (looking like small garages with the decepticon logo as
doors. I'll deal with them seperately, because each one presents an interesting
tactical problem :-).

The level requires you to make heavy use of SLIPSTREAM, so I suggest you take
DEFLECTOR as well, for some handy extra energy. Have LOOKOUT at hand, because
you can sniper away some threats. But as usual, simply try to get where I tell
you to :-).

First order or business is to get rid of the Beam Troopers that are sitting so
conveniently near the cliffs. Best to sniper them away from as far away as
possible. Deal with the Troopers and their Sarges as you see fit. Then make
your way to one of the snipers' platforms and glide from there. Your target
lies bang center between two "easter island"-style statues. You might want
to shoot away the blaster cannon that's guarding the landing spot.
Before you do anything else, activate the save point. Then you have a couple
of options.

- Disable the bunkers.
- Get the beacon near the lighthouse.

The beacon near the lighthouse just is a datacon.
Now for the bunkers. I'll use the savepoint for reference. There are three
bunkers mearby, two to the left, the other to the right, when facing the way
you came. Each of those produces troopers (on first visit) or Shield Arms
(later). To disable one, you need to get near the front door and "operate" it.
You'll be warped inside the bunker and have to deal with the 'Clones inside.
Too bad those bunkers don't stay out of action, as soon as you re-enter the
level, the bunkers are up and running again :-(. And you won't get rewards from
blasting them again either. 

Bunker Busting: LIGHTHOUSE
As seen from the point you respawn on

Left, farthest away from the savepoint:
- Initial Setup: Four Heavy Units, no cover
- Reinforcements: none (thank whomever)

Here, maximum firepower is in order. With no cover, you'll need to take down
the Heavies as fast as possible without taking too much punishment yourself.
Either pack DEFLECTOR, SHIELDWALL or KICKBACK (preferrably one of the first
two) and a big gun/secondary. 

Left, close to savepoint:
- Initial Setup: Corkscrew Ramps, central pillar,
  Shield Troopers, Gun Turrets, Sarges
- Reinforcements: mone, thankfully

I suggest you take out the Turrets first, they can cause much grief, even with
DEFLECTOR equipped. Then remove the Sarges from play, and finally hunt down
the small fish. Try to use the central pillar as cover and choose where to
fight.

Right, directly in front of save:
- Initial Setup: Small room with bridge and outer corridors,
  Shield Troopers, Sarges, 2 Gun Turrets in the outside corridors.
- Reinforcements: none

You can actually RAM the gun turrets (as Optimus) to quickly remove them.
Then use the corners of the outer hallway to your advantage and whittle away
at your foes.

Afterwards, it's back to level exploring again. Move around the plateau until
you are close to a ravine. To your right should be a waterfall, across from you
a gap between two higher cliffs. Glide across the ravine, ignoring the shots
fired at you. Bypass the bunkers (for now) and head towards the savepoint. We
will use it as a landmark in a minute. Then, leave the plateu for the
settlement your CO mentioned. First, get the obvious minicon from the Island
off the settlement.
It's SHEPHERD, your key to the last few missing 'cons in Amazon and Alaska :-).
But that's not the one your CO mentioned. So zip past the guards and head for
the village. Shoot the round tank-things close to the cliff to find the REAL
minicon inside: FAILSAFE, heavy homing firepower! Best to equip it and leave
the village. Return to the Plateu savepoint for some Bunker Busting,

Bunker Busting: PLATEU
As seen from the point you respawn on

Right, close to your landing spot
- Initial Setup: Room with lots of cover, many aisles.
  Six Heavy Units, lots of small fish
- Reinforcements: 3 Squads of Shield Troopers

Here you can opt for a nice hit-and-run battle. Use the pillars/aisles to your
advantage. Avoid getting hit. Take your foes in small bites.
Watch out for reinforcements, Those Shield Troopers have a nasty habit of
showing up on your rear side.

Right, directly in front of save
- Initial Setup: No cover, 4 Sarges
- Reinforcements: 6 Stealth Sarges, 6 Sarges, mixed.

Either use something with Area Effect or retreat into one of the doorways to
deny your opponents their freedom of movement. Best to have some HEAVY armor
equipped. WATCHDOG works wonders, despite my earlier moanings :-)

Left, directly next to save
- Initial Setup: Corkscrew ramp, Central Pillar, two gun turrets, troopers
- Reinforcements: 2 Sarges, 2 Squads of troopers

Pretty easy, compared to the one before. Simply destroy the turrets. Then
breathe deep and clean the lowest level. Afterwards, hunt any scattered
survivors. Done.

After sacking these bunkers (if you can do it in one go, I salute you!), we'll
collect another beacon that's hidden on the far side of the plateu. Turn left
on the respawn point and walk along the cliff's edge. Don't be afraid to get
down a little. Maybe you want to launch yourself from the plateu towards the
village and press R3 (rear view) to see where it is located in relation to the
save point. It's just a measly datacon, but anyway. After that, head back
towards the village and prepare for some annyoing climbing. The next
leg of your trip is infested with Beam Snipers, who delightedly blast you back
to the village if you let them. Do you let them? That's the spirit, son :-)
Use your favorite long-range weapon to blow them off their perches. 

Make a quick pit stop at the Dry Riverbed savepoint and look ahead. There is a
new plateu available to you, complete with bunkers to bust. You can only reach
it with SLIPSTREAM equipped, so don't even try anything funny. Use your good
starting point to glide all the way to the small glade at the far right corner
of the plateu. Grab FULLSPEED and be gone. Back at the Dry Riverbed savepoint,
go to the tip of the pinnacle the save is on. Look down (or use SHEPHERD)
to find a minicon at the base of the cliff: CORONA, the super ribbon beam. 

Before taking on the last bunkers, just let's get some more firepower.
Make your way across the gap and up the ledge where the two gun turrets are
parked. Climb and glide all the way to the Volcano savepoint, taking another
datacon with you along the way. Activate the save. From there, Don't go up the
incline, instead, jump off to the right (when the incline is behind you) and
glide along the wall of the volcano. A few dozen feet off the savepoint you
should easily spot a beacon lying on a ledge. Land (or crashland) there and
pick it up. It's STRONGHOLD, the Super Armor. Then return to the Volcano
Savepoint, equip FULLSPEED and ge up the incline. Triple Dash off the end of
the incline and glide across the crater. Aim for the gap across from your
starting point. After navigating the gap, turn left and use the right analog
stick to check your left-hand side. Stay close to the wall. You should see a
beacon near you pretty soon. It's in an indention in the wall, on a ledge.
Go down there and grab your last Minicon for this game, JUMPSTART, a super-
heavy lightning cannon. 

Afterwards, we'll have our last...

BUNKER BUSTING: DRY RIVERBED
From closest to farthest away, using Dry Riverbed as landmark.

Closest to save:
- Initial Setup: Small room with bridge, 2 gun turrets, outer hallway
  Shield troopers, Sarges
- Reinforcements: Sarges, Shieldtroopers, Stealth Sarges

Whatever you do: DO NOT STAY ON THAT BRIDGE - or in the central room either.
Get out there, snipe at the gun turrets from the outside and keep moving.
Best to have some heavy area firepower with you, like JUMPSTART or CORONA.

Middle bunker:
- Initial Setup: same as the first PLATEU bunker
- Reinforcements: same as the first PLATEU bunker

This is pretty easy, compared to the last bunker. Simply use the terrain to
your advantage and take your time. Not too difficult. 

Furthest bunker:
- Initial Setup: 4 Sarges, 4 Shield Trooper Squads, no cover
- Reinforcements: Shield Troopers, 2 Sarges

After getting all the bunkers, make your way back up to the Volcano Savepoint
and prepare for the biggie: MEGATRON. See the Boss Section on how to beat him.

Result after first visit:
Minicons: 6/6, Datacons 12/12

If you haven't done yet, equip SHEPHERD and get all the stuff you missed. 

* 5.8. Cybertron *

This level is nothing more than a big boss battle, so head to the Boss Section
on tips to beat him. 


**********
* Bosses *
**********

I will list my strategies here, maybe supplemented with user-submitted ones.
Please note that these strategies are not written in stone, as you might find
your own, depending on style, minicon preference and skill.

* 6.1. Antarctica (Starscream) *

My Minicon-Loadout:
L1 - BUILDUP
L2 - DEFLECTOR
R1 - SPARKJUMP
R2 - FLASHBANG

I tried to grab as many minicons as possible before triggering Starscreams
entrance, so I happen to use this loadout. 

Directly after the CG scene, I hammer Starscream with a missile. Usually the
blast knocks him down, so you can pound him with SPARKJUMP. Eventually he will
transform and get off, Seek an open area where you can keep him in sights.
He will do strafing runs at varying heights, try to get him bang center in your
sights when he makes a low approach. Use DEFLECTOR to weather his blast barrage
and blast him with a missile. He should fall down. SPARKJUMP him,
rinse, repeat until dead.

* 6.2. Deep Amazon (Cylonus) *

My Minicon-Loadout

L1: SAFEGUARD
L2: HIGHGEAR
R1: SKIRMISH
R2: LOCK-ON

The first thing you ABSOLUTELY need to do:
Get off the Pyramid's top. Cyclonus usually charges you and throws you into
the river, where you are slower and easier to hit. So deny him the fun and
jump down, preferably in small hops, so you won't lose too much energy.
Then start a hit-and-run battle. The increased energy recharge you gain from
having an all-read loadout allows you to pepper him with bullets and missiles,
and the dash comes in VERY handy when evading his homing missiles. When he
transforms and comes at you, watch the rotor on his back. If that moves slowly,
go in and slug it out toe-to-toe. If you can land a combo, you'll knock him
prone and have the chance to unload your highspeed blaster at him.
This shouldn't be too hard to pull off. 

* 6.3. Mid-Atlantic (TIDAL WAVE) *

My Minicon-Loadout

L1: SLIPSTREAM
L2: DEFLECTOR
R1: SKIRMISH
R2: LOOKOUT

This battle is pretty straightforward. Aim for TIDAL WAVE's head, zoom in and
let him have three shots with your Sniper Rifle. Either take cover until
your gun has recharged, or jump off the pinnacle and fly over to the other
island , if TIDAL WAVE is too close for comfort. You can easily weather his
missile barrage by taking cover and avoid his bullets with DEFLECTOR. Snipe at
his head as often as possible and he should fall - literally. 

* 6.4. Starship (Starscream - again!) *

My Minicon-Loadout

L1: BULLETPROOF
L2: KICKBACK
R1: SPARKJUMP
R2: WATCHDOG

I never thought mines could be so much FUN!
Let Starscream come to you. Pepper him with WATCHDOG's mines. Light them with
SPARKJUMP and use KICKBACK to weather his shots/blows. Repeat until dead.
Laughably easy. 

* 6.5. Pacific Islands (Megatron) *

My Minicon-Loadout

L1: BULLETPROOF
L2: DEFLECTOR
R1: FIREFIGHT
R2: FAILSAFE

Jump down into the crater. Try to aim that you land on the ramp beneath the
ledge you come from. Transform (you take less damage that way). You should have
lost only a fraction of your LONG life circle. Trigger Megatron by walking
to the large Decepticon icon in the platforms' center. Start moving around him
("circle strafe") and charge your blaster. If charged high enough, blast him.
Don't waste your missiles on him yet, since he'll block them. 
If he transforms. take some distance and shoot him with your missiles. Whatever
you do, don't let him grab you, he'll do nasty things to you and you might end
up in the lava. If you keep moving, you should get him sooner or later. 

* 6.6. Cybertron (Unicron) *

This is pretty straightforward. You have only one weapon, the Matrix Cannon and
can fly at will. The controls are as sensitive as in glider mode, so watch out.
I found it to be easiest to use the airbrake often and to keep my targeter
trained on Unicron, instead of blasting full throttle around.

The actual fighting is pretty lame. You need to navigate inside his mouth
BEFORE he starts his destruction beam. Try no to touch the rim of the opening.
When you're inside, aim for the bright spot and HAVE IT SQUARE IN YOUR
TARGETER. Unload your gun as often as possible. When done right, you're spat
back out and you have to chase him again. Do this three times. Then he starts
to go panic and tries to avoid you. Follow him as much as possible and continue
your assault. After four to five more hits he's history and you're treated to
some nice CG outro and credits.

That's it, you've beat the game, congrats. Now try the harder modes :-)

***************
* Cheat Codes *
***************

I usually don't use Cheat Codes, but for those who want to try out stuff or
don't want to play through Commander Mode to unlock Turbo and Big Head Mode,
here you are. I WILL NOT include Action Replay codes. Don't ask. I usually
get the numbers wrong, and besides, cheating like unlimited Health and stuff
GREATLY lessens the fun. Visit www.codejunkies.com or www.exploder.net, if you
need such. 

Level Cheats

(taken from the GameFAQs "Codes and Secrets"-page)

Enter these at the "Difficulty Select Screen" when starting a new game. 

Deep Amazon Level Complete:
Left, Right, Left, Left, Right, R1, R2, Circle

Mid Atlantic Level Complete:
Circle, Square, Circle, Square, Right, Left, Left, Right 

Alaska Level Complete:
R1, Circle, R1, Square, Left, Left, Right, Left

Starship Level Complete:
Left, Left, Right, Circle Circle, Right, Right, Left 

Earth Complete:
R2, R1, L1, L2, Square, Circle, Square, Circle 

Big Head/Turbo Mode
(thanks to MrRockMan and billalexander on the GameFAQs Transformers board)

At the Autobot HQ main menu screen hit the following:

Big Head Mode:
Circle, Circle, Circle, Square L1 L1 L1 L2

Turbo Mode:
L1 R2 R2 Square Square Square Square L1

After each code you should hear Red Alert say the code was accepted

To obtain these "legally", you need to find two special hidden datacons 
on 'Commander' Difficulty.

******************
* Thanks and EOF *
******************

- CJayC, for his killer site (less commercials, please!)
- Atari/Melbourne House, for one of the best games 2004
- Everyone who helped in making this Guide, namely (so far)
  - MrRockMan
  - billalexander
  - samuraa2002
  - Miles Flinn (for reminding me of a missing minicon in the list)

[EOF]

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