The Transformers have been staples of animation nearly as long as they’ve been mainstays of the toy rack. They’ve starred in plenty of cartoons throughout their thirty-plus years of existence, some better than others. The best examples are the ones  made by people who take the lore seriously — which is why we’re optimistic about Rooster Teeth’s upcoming prequel trilogy, War On Cybertron.

Originally announced as three movies (hence the “trilogy”), War On Cybertron will instead be split up into six 22 minute episodes apiece. The first of these, subtitled Siege, will premiere on Netflix at the end of this month.

The Autobots are on Earth because civil war wrecked their home planet of Cybertron, and the Decepticons are here because they’re jerks who followed them. Rooster Teeth’s trilogy retells how that all went down. Turns out the fate of Optimus’s home planet came down to one decision…

The war that has torn apart their home planet of Cybertron is at a tipping point. Two leaders, Optimus Prime and Megatron, both want to save their world and unify their people, but only on their own terms. In an attempt to end the conflict, Megatron is forced to consider using the Allspark, the source of all life and power on Cybertron, to “reformat” the Autobots, thus “unifying” Cybertron. Outnumbered, outgunned, and under SIEGE, the battle-weary Autobots orchestrate a desperate series of counterstrikes on a mission that, if everything somehow goes right, will end with an unthinkable choice: kill their planet in order to save it.

F.J. DeSanto, who has written many Transformers comic books, served as showrunner for Transformers: War On Cybertron Trilogy: Siege. The six-part first chapter stars Jake Foushee as Optimus Prime, Jason Marnocha as Megatron, Linsay Rousseau as Elita-1, Joe Zieja as Bumblebee, Frank Todaro as Starscream, Rafael Goldstein as Ratchet, Keith Silverstein as Jetfire, and Todd Haberkorn as Shockwave.

Transformers: War On Cybertron Trilogy: Siege launches on Netflix July 30.