Hype is a dangerous thing indeed. There are few swords more double edged than it in the media, and for many franchises it has led to as many failures as successes. Fail to promise enough and you get overlooked by your competition. Promise too much and you get called a liar and the backlash can be immense. Devote most of your budget into the campaign over the product, and you end up producing Aliens: Colonial Marines. For the better part of a year, Machinima has been hyping the living hell out of their new franchise, pulling out all the stops to make Combiner Wars their Transformers series.
From hiring John Bailey (AKA Epic Movie Trailer Guy, XCOM government man and the go-to fan voice of Optimus Prime) to relating the story closely to the IDW comics, this looked promising. In fact, even the individual trailers promised to try and veer away from the creative rut some series fall into; with Starscream being shown in an oddly positive light and his promo framed in a manner akin to a Presidential campaign announcement. Even while clearly on a tight budget, the product looked promising. Or at least it did, right up until we saw the first episode.