First of all, I've not the remotest of interest in anyone telling me their personalised take on TFs distinctly vague and hazy cannon and suggesting that 'Cybertronians didn't have Beast modes before coming to Earth'. Many, many G1 characters possessed Beast modes who never came anywhere near our planet, and as a starfaring race, its not difficult to imagine that the Cybertronians used their powers of disguise to better hide and integrate with other alien species besides our own. Add to this the fact that animals are just cool in general, you don't need much of a storyline to justify their inclusion. Anyway, you have two main types of animal mode - Beasts (land based animals which are further broken up into sub categories - more on that later) and Aviators, which are flying creatures. Beast modes in general control in the same way as Cars, Trucks and Tanks. Regular movement causes your animal to walk/canter/lumber/prowl around as you'd imagine, they also have a melee attack with their respective horns, claws, teeth etc which is slightly more damaging than a Robot mode melee (3 bars of damage instead of 2.5), and holding L1 makes them sprint. Whilst sprinting, pressing R2 will activate their 'strike' ability, which is a even more powerful melee (4 bars), but not so easy to hit with, and again its appearance varies depending on the animal. Due to the fact that animals are alot more varied in appearance and movement than simple vehicles, they fall into a number of previously mentioned sub categories to better showcase their abilities. 'Scout Beast' covers most four legged hunters like Lions, Tigers, Wolves etc and certain insects, and they are the fastest and most agile Beast mode. Their melee is a claw swipe accompanied by a suitable growl, and their strike is a leaping slash. Also, similar to G1 Razorclaw, they have twin machine guns mounted unobtrusively around their shoulder/chest region, allowing them a degree of ranged offence (though they only have half the ammunition of a Car). 'Leader Beast' covers heavier, bulkier animals like Bull, Bison, Rhino and Gorilla, and is a slower but better armoured Beast class. The horned variety use gores and headbutts as their melee, the Gorilla punches, and as you'd expect the strike is a battering ram (clothesline for the Gorilla). Being affiliated with the Leader class, instead of machine guns they have rocket launchers mounted on their backs, but again, limited ammunition. 'Soldier Beast' covers the biggest, meanest beasts - we're talking dinosaurs and monsters along with heavily armoured insects and crustaceans here. You can pretty much imagine for yourselves what their melees and strikes look like, and their cannons are mounted in their mouths, allowing them to shoot fireballs which have the same properties as tank shells. 'Aviators' are your flying animals like birds, bats, winged insects etc, and handle in similar fashion to jets, though with the added cool factor of flapping their wings even when stationary. R2 is a quick wing tuck and turn allowing them to rapidly change direction (its intended to be a very agile aerial class), L1 is your 'thrust' though in addition to the boosters firing on the birds back, they'll also lean forward and flap their wings. Like the other beast modes, they have a powerful melee which sees them perform a short dive and slash in the direction of the targeting reticle, unlike the other beasts however they have no ranged weapons, instead possessing a 'hunt' attack which locks on like a missile (it can lock on to Robot mode too), before pressing R1 to dive right at your prey as though you ARE the missile, automatically giving a furious chase and tearing into them with your beak or teeth, causing heavy damage. (It should be pretty obvious at this point, but each of these animal chassis would have access to the same weapons, abilities and killstreaks in multiplayer as their vehicle class counterparts) These ideas are pretty fanciful, and very much unlikely to make it into the game as animals are alot more individual than vehicles and would thusly require more work in terms of animation and sound effects, but nonetheless I thought I'd share them here, as personally I reckon they'd be a riot to play as. Beast mode engage!