Coming off an immensely popular trilogy of movies that have made billions of dollars around the world, it’s difficult to say  that Transformers: Age of Extinction is a risky proposition. At the same time, this newest iteration of the series about giant polymorphic robots is starting from a potentially shaky position, having chucked the previous trilogy’s entire cast and redesigned all of its mechanical characters.

As Age of Extinction‘s June 27th debut approaches, we’re getting more and more glimpses at what has been (to this point) a fairly closed production. Not only has Hasbro posted 13 new character images that introduce much of the non-human cast, director Michael Bay (Pain and Gain) has recently spoken about the story and overall direction of the series.

Entertainment Weekly has shared a recent interview with Bay in which he discusses the creative future of the Transformers franchise. Regarding Age of Extinction, Bay says:

“It’s kind of like a new ‘Transformers.’ We had three, the first trilogy, and this is going to be the next one… I’m not necessarily sure that I’m doing [the others], but that’s what it’s meant for.”

Though unrelated to EW‘s article, a number of just-released profile images reveal the extent and overall look of Age of Extinction‘s Transformer characters. Focusing largely on new characters – especially the much-hyped Dinobots – these images can be viewed below:

Though the full view of the updated looks for the classic roster of Dinobots is exciting, perhaps the most interesting reveals lie in the listed Decepticons. Not only do we get a good look at main heavy Galvatron, there’s also a clear view of Lockdown – also known as the mysterious figure in the film’s trailer whose entire head transforms into a cannon.

Bay shed quite a bit of light on Lockdown, stating:

“Lockdown is an interesting character. He travels the galaxy, he works for somebody else. And he’s here for one person, one alien, and then he’s out of here… So he doesn’t really want to take sides. The cause and balance of the galaxy is kind of messed up when different species play with different species. And that opens up a whole other gigantic world for Transformers.”

This is indeed fascinating, as it expands the potential conflict of Age of Extinction beyond the last three films’ Autobot/Decepticon war. Transformers fans will no doubt debate just who Lockdown’s employer is, and whether or not that revelation will provide the lead-in to the already-planned Transformers 5.

For now, you can place our money on the Quintessons, if only because seeing the cackling mechanical sadists realized on the big screen could be both disturbing and exhilarating. If the franchise does indeed move in that direction, it will be interesting to see if it embraces the full space opera weirdness of the larger Transformers canon.

What do you think, Screen Rant readers? Do the Transformers’ new designs hit the right notes? And if Lockdown is indeed the gateway into a larger science fiction universe, do you approve?

Transformers: Age of Extinction will transform and roll out on June 27th, 2014.

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Sources: EW; Coming Soon