Sarracini's biggest issue was stumbling on basics like....ya know, research. (Seriously, a uniformed "Defense Minister"?!?!?!?)
The first five issues of "Armada" were good reading though. Sarracini balanced the tone, premise and characters and ended up setting the foundation for what should have been about 5 years worth of comics. Furman's run was only supposed to last for 2 issues. Even putting aside his inflation of that story, Lee's art ruins at least a few panels.
Raiz's art, while not toy accurate, was damned good. The characters looked like they were moving around and doing stuff. Raiz was definitely using legitimate control art as reference. But, he was clearly not using the toys. (And, that is okay.)
One of the things I like about the opening scene is that it reinforces just how vulnerable the mini-cons are compared to other Transformers, as Rollbar is almost crushed to death by a car crusher. That’s a little more mundane than being captured and rewired by Decepticons, but at the same time it grounds them. I also enjoy seeing them catch up with news via the local TV station since Megatron’s rampage didn’t go unnoticed.
It was not just the vulnerability, it was reluctance. If left to their own devices, the Minicons would have been happy to spend their time hiding in the junkyard.
(That said, I am not sure that Rollbar was in immediate/mortal danger. That scene looks to be a question of "Rollbar is being inconvenienced".)
The focus of the series definitely shifts. Sparkplug, the tank team, Leader-One and the saber jets are the only Minicons that Furman really uses. Rook shows up towards the end. And, it is a safe bet that he was intented to be a Mini-quisling, but the rushed nature of the last arc limits how much time is spent on him.
The question of choosing alliances carefully stays with the series though. It is the whole idea of "Fortress".
-notes that there were UK "Armada" comics as well, but has never seen copies first hand.