REVIEW – When this game was announced, my hunch was probably correct back then. At that time (I think I might have written about this in Konzol Magazin as well), I named Transistor as one of my top picks, the surprise title to watch out for. Supergiant Games only created two games so far, but they are the perfect example of quality over quantity…
Although I’m not really into RPG games – a prime example would be Diablo III, which is basically not made for me -, Transistor still managed to catch my attention. Last time I opened the same way with Child of Light, which most likely means I have a twisted taste in gaming. (Believe me, this is true…) So, what exactly was the thing that got me hooked? The game’s world.
It’s very hard to create a nicely developed, yet not hypertextured – yes, there are examples, where the devs fall off that horse – world. Lots of colours are on our screen at the same time, but the result is not a puke inducing mixture. The graphics are not top notch, but they were never meant to be that.
What happens when a singer gets a ridiculously powerful sword? Nope, Red won’t decide to have a careeer in singing country music (thankfully it never happens!), instead she decides to jump into action. Basically this is the base of the storyline. In the futuristic city of Cloudbank, Red has a nice singing career with her beautiful voice, but she can’t just live her life like that… because the futuristic setting of the game’s world requires the obligatory robotic characters to appear, which happen to be our enemies, who would like to kill our heroine. The Process (see what they did there?), controlled by the
Camerata was about to finish the task, but the powerful sword called Transistor doesn’t manage to take Red’s life, instead she decides to take control of it. So basically Red and Transistor start to clear up the Camerata-members, ending up in the cemetery one by one. Of course, the sword will have a much bigger role later in the storyline, but I am not going to spoil it, because you should try this game, as it’s definitely worth a try.
This isn’t a first-person RPG (that would be Dark Messiah from 2006), instead Transistor is an isometric view RPG. The game seriously throws us into stuff with an in medias res move, although I have to say you’ll catch the drift quite easily. However, the battle system isn’t that simple. It isn’t a round-based RPG game! Imagine something like XCOM: Enemy Unknown, but here, you can seriously plan out what you want to do.
It’s definitely worth sometimes to sit back and properly plan out your round of attacks/moves, both which will be done in a very fast speed. When the game enters Turn() – this is the planning mode basically -, the game waits for us. The time allotted to us refills between these turns, but as the enemies might be a tough nut to break, make sure to not mess things up, or you might end up dying.
So the battle is a weird cross between real-time strategy and turn-based attacks, but it’s addictive and fun.
Again, I can’t say anything bad about the game’s audio. It’s a pleasure to listen t Darren Korb’s soundtrack. Hell, I have to admit that most of the time during writing these reviews, I regularly listen to classical music. But not this time! Right now, I am listening to We All Become. But I can’t pass by the commentary either; that’s also very nicely done. While being mystic about the world and its happenings, they all sound so good, adding even more to the already good gameplay. Bullseye.
A little shallow
So far I might have sounded like that Transistor is somewhere up in the high 90’s in terms of the rating. Sadly, no, Supergiant’s product won’t even reach the high percentage of 90 either. Why is that?
Somehow the whole game lacks that extra killer detail. I’d have liked to know more about Cloudbank, and I found the gameplay lacking that polish here and there. This is what makes or breaks a game to be a legendary piece of art. In this case, I can’t call Transistor a legend, because it misses that extra. But given the fact that Supergiant had no big money behind them (yes, I mean a publisher in this case!), they still brought out an amazing game.
Transistor is a respectfully developed, playable game with full of pleasure, as it is a cyberpunk marvel, but it trips on the gate of 90%. In the battles you have to account the time you have – the enemies can be more powerful than you think, so one bad round can make our whole plan go up in smoke, even ending up dying in worse cases.
This game only got a digital release, but I RECOMMEND it. With capital letters. Even for RPG-avoiders – you have to start somewhere. Whether it’ll be this game or Child of Light, as both games are excellent.
In the end, we will sing together in the moonlight…
+ Cyberpunk beauty
+ High quality audio
– Lacks that extra
– The Turn() can be deadly… for us
– I fear that the devs will be silent for another few years…
Publisher: Supergiant Games
Developer: Supergiant Games
Genres: Action RPG
Published: May 27
Gameplay - 8.1
Graphics - 8.5
Story - 7.6
Music/audio - 8.3
Ambiance - 8.6
Transistor is a respectfully developed, playable game with full of pleasure, as it is a cyberpunk marvel, but it trips on the gate of 90%. In the battles you have to account the time you have - the enemies can be more powerful than you think, so one bad round can make our whole plan go up in smoke, even ending up dying in worse cases.
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