Showing results for tags 'transistor'. - Extra Life Community Hub Jump to content

Search the Community

Showing results for tags 'transistor'.



More search options

  • Search By Tags

    Type tags separated by commas.
  • Search By Author

Content Type


Categories

  • Extra Life News
    • Extra Life Updates
    • Best Practices
    • Community Content
    • Why I Extra Life
    • Fundraising
    • Contests
  • Gaming News
  • Features
  • Podcast

Discussions

  • Extra Life Discussions
    • General Extra Life Discussion
    • Local Extra Lifers
    • Fundraising Ideas
    • Live Streaming Tips & Tricks
    • Official Extra Life Stream Team Discussion
    • Extra Life JSON Code Discussion & Sharing
    • Extra Life United
    • Extra Life Q & A
  • Articles & Extra Life Announcements
    • Announcements
  • Official Extra Life Guilds
    • Guild information and Discussion
    • Canada
    • Northeastern US
    • Southeastern US
    • Central US
    • Western US
  • Gaming Discussions
  • Other Stuff
  • Denver Extra Life Guild's Recent Posts

Calendars

  • Extra Life Community Calendar
  • Extra Life Stream Team
  • Akron Guild
  • Albany Guild
  • Albuquerque Guild
  • Anchorage Guild
  • Atlanta Guild
  • Austin Guild
  • Bakersfield Guild
  • Baltimore Guild
  • Birmingham Guild
  • Boston Guild
  • Burlington Guild
  • Buffalo Guild
  • Calgary, AB Guild
  • Morgantown Guild
  • Charlottesville Guild
  • Chicago Guild
  • Cincinnati Guild
  • Cleveland Guild
  • Columbia, MO Guild
  • Columbus, OH Guild
  • Dallas Guild
  • Dayton Guild
  • Denver Guild
  • Des Moines Guild
  • Detroit Guild
  • Edmonton, AB Guild
  • Fargo-Valley City Guild
  • Fresno Guild
  • Ft. Worth Guild
  • Gainesville-Tallahassee Guild
  • Grand Rapids Guild
  • Halifax, NS Guild
  • Hamilton, ON Guild
  • Hartford Guild
  • Hershey Guild
  • Hudson Valley Guild
  • Houston Guild
  • Indianapolis Guild
  • Jacksonville Guild
  • Kansas City Guild
  • Knoxville Guild
  • Lansing Guild
  • London, ON Guild
  • Los Angeles Guild
  • Milwaukee / Madison Guild
  • Minneapolis / Twin Cities Guild
  • Montreal / Quebec City Guild
  • Nashville Guild
  • Newark Guild
  • NYC & Long Island Guild
  • Oakland / San Francisco Guild
  • Omaha Guild
  • Orange County Guild
  • Orlando Guild
  • Ottawa, ON Guild
  • Philadelphia Guild
  • Phoenix Guild
  • Pittsburgh Guild
  • Portland, OR Guild
  • Portland, ME Guild
  • Raleigh-Durham Guild
  • Richmond Guild
  • Sacramento Guild
  • Salt Lake City Guild
  • San Antonio Guild
  • San Diego Guild
  • San Juan, PR Guild
  • Saskatchewan Guild
  • Seattle Guild
  • Spokane Guild
  • Springfield-Champaign, IL Guild
  • Springfield, MA Guild
  • St. Louis Guild
  • Syracuse Guild
  • Tampa / St. Petersburg Guild
  • Toronto, ON Guild
  • Vancouver, BC Guild
  • Washington DC Guild
  • Winnipeg, MB Guild
  • Denver Extra Life Guild's Events
  • Extra Life Akron's Events

Find results in...

Find results that contain...


Date Created

  • Start

    End


Last Updated

  • Start

    End


Filter by number of...

Joined

  • Start

    End


Group


Hospital


Location


Why I "Extra Life"


Interests


Twitter


Instagram


Twitch


Mixer


Discord


Blizzard Battletag


Nintendo ID


PSN ID


Steam


Origin


Xbox Gamertag

Found 8 results

  1. That time of year when many of the people who write about video games make their lists of the ten best games released over the past year has swung around once again. Along with that time of year, the bandwagon that I hop onto has arrived. 2014, a year awash in a sea of AAA titles full of explosions, robots, and sci-fi concepts. I should have loved it; a year that seemed to cater to things I typically love in video games. But I didn’t love it. Oh, I certainly liked the robots in Titanfall. I enjoyed Destiny’s gunplay. A Call of Duty with Kevin Spacey came out. Tens of millions of development and advertising dollars were thrown squarely at gamers like me. Despite all of that money and effort, the games that most appealed to me the most were generally the smaller indie titles and AAA the exception rather than the rule. Jack Gardner's Top Ten Games of 2014 10. Nidhogg Oh, Nidhogg. How can anyone find it in themselves to dislike a brutally competitive, 8-bit fencing game where players duel to the death for the honor of being horribly devoured by a flying dragon monster? It takes a bit of time to get accustomed to the learning curve and the controls, but overcoming that difficulty rewards players with a game that leaves you on the edge of your seat. Every bout is a tense exercise in reflexes and snap judgments. It makes for a rollercoaster of an experience that can be enjoyed alone, but is even better with friends. 9. The Banner Saga One of the first games I played this year, The Banner Saga managed to fix itself in my mind as one of my favorite experiences in 2014. Many people had mixed feelings about the gameplay’s pacing, but I’m a sucker for turn-based combat with a heavy narrative bent. The Banner Saga manages to deliver a deep combat system while weaving a tale of humans and hulking Varl working together to survive the impending apocalypse. Players lead groups of soldiers and refugees and are forced to make decisions that often have no clear right or wrong, but each choice might lead to either good fortune or disaster. The journey constantly feels balanced on the edge of a knife, where the consequences for slipping are often the death of family and friends. It works as a great introduction to the grim fantasy world Stoic wants to create and explore in future installments. 8. Legend of Grimrock 2 Imagine my surprise when the second Grimrock adventure left me floored. Sure, I enjoyed the original Legend of Grimrock, but I had gripes with its repetitive halls, monsters, and somewhat unintuitive combat. I just didn’t expect developer Almost Human to absolutely nail the sequel. Almost every problem that I had with the first game was fixed in the second. Exploring the diverse areas of Grimrock really feels like discovering a long lost civilization. Monsters rarely feel overly used and often present a fresh challenge. The combat remains a bit oblique, but the introduction makes for a smoother tutorial. Almost Human has really shown what life there can still be in the older styles of game design. 7. Dragon Age: Inquisition I closed out my review of Inquisition by saying, “Do yourself a favor and play Dragon Age: Inquisition. Any missteps it makes pale in comparison to the enjoyable experience it can offer.” I stand by that statement. It is an amazing adventure through a fantasy world struggling with global, societal, and personal problems. Every nook and cranny begs to be investigated and explored. A completionist could easily spend hundreds of hours in Inquisition before reaching the conclusion. Progressive and entertaining writing embody some of the finest I’ve come across in video games. Several of the characters will be remembered for their originality and for breaking new ground. It is huge, gorgeous, and you can practically feel Bioware’s creative freedom down to the game’s bones. 6. Child of Light One of the high points of 2014 was experiencing Child of Light. It was like hearing one of your favorite fairytales for the very first time. An air of ethereal reality permeates everything from the incredible soundtrack by Coeur de pirate right down to the lightness of environment traversal. The ensemble cast are simple characters, but I mean that in a complimentary way. They are simple in the same way the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Lion are simple characters in the Wizard of Oz. They might be simple, but they’ve still got personality and they’ll stick in your memory. The baddies are scary and bad and the characters are straightforward, which is exactly what all the design decisions call for in the narrative. All the different parts work together to create something bigger than what almost anyone expected from such a small game. 5. Sunset Overdrive It seems like it has been ages since I’ve seen a game that so fully embraces the concept of play. Everything about Sunset Overdrive is focused on being fun and playful. Moving around its open world feels like an awesome co-opting of Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 while the gunplay and the guns themselves were stolen from Ratchet and Clank and then pumped full of cocaine. Sunset Overdrive feels like a continuous explosion set to a punk rock soundtrack (how is that for a pull quote?). It’s breathtaking. The top notch humor had me laugh out loud more than a few times. The story and characters are barely more than functional, but the gameplay refuses to be anything other than a loud, obnoxious, and glorious ride into the sunset that leaves nothing but awesome moments and good vibes in its wake. 4. The Vanishing of Ethan Carter One of the most satisfying things to me as a video game critic is when a developer clearly understands how to tell a story in an interactive medium. From the way they gently lead the player through a world both real and illusory, carefully hiding the confines of their game’s structure, to the final, revelatory gut punch it is clear to me that The Astronauts know their business. The Vanishing of Ethan Carter plays with how we perceive game worlds as both player and protagonist. Many might be quick to dismiss it as “just another walking simulator,” but that would be a mistake. I will say that it’s certainly a slow burn. However, those with patience, curiosity, and a spark of creativity will be able to see the value in Ethan Carter and understand why it placed so highly on my list. 3. Threes! Okay, I’ll be the first to admit that this game seems like a strange pick for the first of my top three games of 2014. For starters, it is a mobile game. There was a trend not too long ago where many gamers decided that mobile games were somehow “lesser” games because… phones? Or because they tended to be easier and presented a lower barrier to entry than, say, Gears of War or Super Mario Galaxy. The fact is that mobile games can be as deep and engaging as video games of the stationary variety. Threes proves that fact beyond any doubt. The concept is simple: Make the number three and then match similar numbers together on a sliding grid. What initially seems simple becomes more and more complicated as larger numbers are reached. I think the simplest way to convey the idea is to say that Threes is like someone mixed Tetris with a Sudoku puzzle. I’ve lost many hours to Threes and I’m likely to lose more. Its simplicity is ingenious. Threes is absolutely perfect for what it is and what it tries to do. 2. The Walking Dead: Season Two While I found the first season of Telltale’s The Walking Dead to be one heck of a narrative ride, I don’t think I really clicked with it until their second season. The second season focuses on a young girl struggling to grow up in a world overrun with zombies and collapsing social structures. Characters enter and exit the story, sometimes in a heart-achingly abrupt fashion. Almost everyone manage to make an impression, and by the time the final episode rolls around, both the young girl and the player have seen some really bad things go down. Then an awful, awful choice is presented to the player; a choice that pulls no punches. With only a handful of seconds in which we can make our choice, loyalties, affection, everything that has been built over the course of five or six hours is put to the test. It’s an agonizing moment, but the dramatic payoff of the time spent in this game world is an amazing achievement. Even remembering that choice makes me tense up all over. Regardless of what the player decides, each of the endings is an amazing conclusion for the storyline that began in Season One. Just writing about Telltale’s narrative prowess make me want to play The Walking Dead: Season Two again. 1. Transistor One of the finest soundtracks of the year created by Darren Korb. Incredibly beautiful art direction by Jen Zee. Fantastic design and writing by Greg Kasavin. Transistor has all of this and more. It is a true masterpiece of video game design and artistry. It takes a certain kind of boldness to release a game that is completely and unabashedly itself. Transistor doesn’t fear being misunderstood or that it might be found confusing. It jut is what it is and leaves players on their own to try and piece the story together. Experimenting with the ever growing number of abilities, playing the game, unlocks pieces of the narrative that inform character motivations and tell us about Cloudbank, the world in which they all live. It is a world that shares many similarities with our own world, a place where technology is beginning to infuse every aspect of daily life. Its silent protagonist exists not for convention’s sake, but to make a larger point when paired with the Transistor, a voice without a body. That speechlessness deepens the mystery. Why does she do what she does? I’m a big proponent of having a reason behind ever design decision in a game. There should be a reason characters act a certain way; there should be a reason that the aesthetic looks this way; there should be a reason that the narrative turn comes at the beginning rather than the end. Transistor has meaning. It has weight. It is an astoundingly beautiful accomplishment. What about you? What were your top games of 2014? Let us know in the comments!
  2. That time of year when many of the people who write about video games make their lists of the ten best games released over the past year has swung around once again. Along with that time of year, the bandwagon that I hop onto has arrived. 2014, a year awash in a sea of AAA titles full of explosions, robots, and sci-fi concepts. I should have loved it; a year that seemed to cater to things I typically love in video games. But I didn’t love it. Oh, I certainly liked the robots in Titanfall. I enjoyed Destiny’s gunplay. A Call of Duty with Kevin Spacey came out. Tens of millions of development and advertising dollars were thrown squarely at gamers like me. Despite all of that money and effort, the games that most appealed to me the most were generally the smaller indie titles and AAA the exception rather than the rule. Jack Gardner's Top Ten Games of 2014 10. Nidhogg Oh, Nidhogg. How can anyone find it in themselves to dislike a brutally competitive, 8-bit fencing game where players duel to the death for the honor of being horribly devoured by a flying dragon monster? It takes a bit of time to get accustomed to the learning curve and the controls, but overcoming that difficulty rewards players with a game that leaves you on the edge of your seat. Every bout is a tense exercise in reflexes and snap judgments. It makes for a rollercoaster of an experience that can be enjoyed alone, but is even better with friends. 9. The Banner Saga One of the first games I played this year, The Banner Saga managed to fix itself in my mind as one of my favorite experiences in 2014. Many people had mixed feelings about the gameplay’s pacing, but I’m a sucker for turn-based combat with a heavy narrative bent. The Banner Saga manages to deliver a deep combat system while weaving a tale of humans and hulking Varl working together to survive the impending apocalypse. Players lead groups of soldiers and refugees and are forced to make decisions that often have no clear right or wrong, but each choice might lead to either good fortune or disaster. The journey constantly feels balanced on the edge of a knife, where the consequences for slipping are often the death of family and friends. It works as a great introduction to the grim fantasy world Stoic wants to create and explore in future installments. 8. Legend of Grimrock 2 Imagine my surprise when the second Grimrock adventure left me floored. Sure, I enjoyed the original Legend of Grimrock, but I had gripes with its repetitive halls, monsters, and somewhat unintuitive combat. I just didn’t expect developer Almost Human to absolutely nail the sequel. Almost every problem that I had with the first game was fixed in the second. Exploring the diverse areas of Grimrock really feels like discovering a long lost civilization. Monsters rarely feel overly used and often present a fresh challenge. The combat remains a bit oblique, but the introduction makes for a smoother tutorial. Almost Human has really shown what life there can still be in the older styles of game design. 7. Dragon Age: Inquisition I closed out my review of Inquisition by saying, “Do yourself a favor and play Dragon Age: Inquisition. Any missteps it makes pale in comparison to the enjoyable experience it can offer.” I stand by that statement. It is an amazing adventure through a fantasy world struggling with global, societal, and personal problems. Every nook and cranny begs to be investigated and explored. A completionist could easily spend hundreds of hours in Inquisition before reaching the conclusion. Progressive and entertaining writing embody some of the finest I’ve come across in video games. Several of the characters will be remembered for their originality and for breaking new ground. It is huge, gorgeous, and you can practically feel Bioware’s creative freedom down to the game’s bones. 6. Child of Light One of the high points of 2014 was experiencing Child of Light. It was like hearing one of your favorite fairytales for the very first time. An air of ethereal reality permeates everything from the incredible soundtrack by Coeur de pirate right down to the lightness of environment traversal. The ensemble cast are simple characters, but I mean that in a complimentary way. They are simple in the same way the Scarecrow, Tin Man, and Lion are simple characters in the Wizard of Oz. They might be simple, but they’ve still got personality and they’ll stick in your memory. The baddies are scary and bad and the characters are straightforward, which is exactly what all the design decisions call for in the narrative. All the different parts work together to create something bigger than what almost anyone expected from such a small game. 5. Sunset Overdrive It seems like it has been ages since I’ve seen a game that so fully embraces the concept of play. Everything about Sunset Overdrive is focused on being fun and playful. Moving around its open world feels like an awesome co-opting of Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 while the gunplay and the guns themselves were stolen from Ratchet and Clank and then pumped full of cocaine. Sunset Overdrive feels like a continuous explosion set to a punk rock soundtrack (how is that for a pull quote?). It’s breathtaking. The top notch humor had me laugh out loud more than a few times. The story and characters are barely more than functional, but the gameplay refuses to be anything other than a loud, obnoxious, and glorious ride into the sunset that leaves nothing but awesome moments and good vibes in its wake. 4. The Vanishing of Ethan Carter One of the most satisfying things to me as a video game critic is when a developer clearly understands how to tell a story in an interactive medium. From the way they gently lead the player through a world both real and illusory, carefully hiding the confines of their game’s structure, to the final, revelatory gut punch it is clear to me that The Astronauts know their business. The Vanishing of Ethan Carter plays with how we perceive game worlds as both player and protagonist. Many might be quick to dismiss it as “just another walking simulator,” but that would be a mistake. I will say that it’s certainly a slow burn. However, those with patience, curiosity, and a spark of creativity will be able to see the value in Ethan Carter and understand why it placed so highly on my list. 3. Threes! Okay, I’ll be the first to admit that this game seems like a strange pick for the first of my top three games of 2014. For starters, it is a mobile game. There was a trend not too long ago where many gamers decided that mobile games were somehow “lesser” games because… phones? Or because they tended to be easier and presented a lower barrier to entry than, say, Gears of War or Super Mario Galaxy. The fact is that mobile games can be as deep and engaging as video games of the stationary variety. Threes proves that fact beyond any doubt. The concept is simple: Make the number three and then match similar numbers together on a sliding grid. What initially seems simple becomes more and more complicated as larger numbers are reached. I think the simplest way to convey the idea is to say that Threes is like someone mixed Tetris with a Sudoku puzzle. I’ve lost many hours to Threes and I’m likely to lose more. Its simplicity is ingenious. Threes is absolutely perfect for what it is and what it tries to do. 2. The Walking Dead: Season Two While I found the first season of Telltale’s The Walking Dead to be one heck of a narrative ride, I don’t think I really clicked with it until their second season. The second season focuses on a young girl struggling to grow up in a world overrun with zombies and collapsing social structures. Characters enter and exit the story, sometimes in a heart-achingly abrupt fashion. Almost everyone manage to make an impression, and by the time the final episode rolls around, both the young girl and the player have seen some really bad things go down. Then an awful, awful choice is presented to the player; a choice that pulls no punches. With only a handful of seconds in which we can make our choice, loyalties, affection, everything that has been built over the course of five or six hours is put to the test. It’s an agonizing moment, but the dramatic payoff of the time spent in this game world is an amazing achievement. Even remembering that choice makes me tense up all over. Regardless of what the player decides, each of the endings is an amazing conclusion for the storyline that began in Season One. Just writing about Telltale’s narrative prowess make me want to play The Walking Dead: Season Two again. 1. Transistor One of the finest soundtracks of the year created by Darren Korb. Incredibly beautiful art direction by Jen Zee. Fantastic design and writing by Greg Kasavin. Transistor has all of this and more. It is a true masterpiece of video game design and artistry. It takes a certain kind of boldness to release a game that is completely and unabashedly itself. Transistor doesn’t fear being misunderstood or that it might be found confusing. It jut is what it is and leaves players on their own to try and piece the story together. Experimenting with the ever growing number of abilities, playing the game, unlocks pieces of the narrative that inform character motivations and tell us about Cloudbank, the world in which they all live. It is a world that shares many similarities with our own world, a place where technology is beginning to infuse every aspect of daily life. Its silent protagonist exists not for convention’s sake, but to make a larger point when paired with the Transistor, a voice without a body. That speechlessness deepens the mystery. Why does she do what she does? I’m a big proponent of having a reason behind ever design decision in a game. There should be a reason characters act a certain way; there should be a reason that the aesthetic looks this way; there should be a reason that the narrative turn comes at the beginning rather than the end. Transistor has meaning. It has weight. It is an astoundingly beautiful accomplishment. What about you? What were your top games of 2014? Let us know in the comments! View full article
  3. I believe that Transistor would classify as one of the few genuine video game tragedies, though such classification could doubtless be debated to death. Transistor is a game of paradoxes and mysteries. It is a tragedy, but it is also a tale of revenge. It focuses on the end of the world and the beginning of a new one. It is about an eloquent singer without a voice. Supergiant Games designed almost everything in Transistor with multiple purposes in mind. While this might seem confusing at first, it is really a dazzling testament to the talent at Supergiant Games. All the individual pieces of Transistor click together to create a cohesive and interesting whole that is shocking, beautiful, and full of silent rage. Inevitably people will compare Transistor with Supergiant Games’ first project, Bastion. On a purely surface level, Transistor shares a similar sense of style and world-building with its predecessor. It is highly stylized, played from an isometric perspective, and there is a constant voice helping to clarify the narrative and objectives. However, in almost every other respect it is an entirely different sort of beast. Nothing in Transistor is straightforward. The story begins with a murder gone wrong and a stolen voice. Red, the protagonist, was a famous and influential singer in the city of Cloudbank, until a group of individuals known as the Camerata attempted to silence her permanently. They only half succeeded. Though they stole her voice and managed to kill the mysterious man who was with her at the time, Red finds herself armed with the assassins’ weapon: the sword-like Transistor. Rather than run and escape Cloudbank, Red decides to take the fight to the Camerata just as a strange mass of creatures known as The Process begin to tear the world apart. Most of the talking done in the game is done by the Transistor itself which has absorbed the soul of the unknown man who was killed instead of Red. Red herself can only communicate back by typing on the various terminals scattered throughout Cloudbank. Because of her lack of voice, Red’s motivations and intentions are left to the player to interpret and aren’t necessarily clear until the final moments of Transistor. The narrative takes some strange turns and brings up a lot of questions that it doesn’t completely answer, at least not after a preliminary playthrough. What starts out seeming like a simple, little story ends up asking huge questions that feel relevant to our rapidly advancing, digital society. After having a few days to mull it over, I think I have a firm grasp on what Transistor was all about, what it meant. I’ve been trying to think of a less pretentious way of saying this, but I haven’t been able to come up with one: Transistor’s narrative doesn’t stoop to accommodate everyone. It requires a bit of effort on the part of the player to understand and piece together what happened over the course of the game. It isn’t a grand mystery, but it is an exercise in interpretation (which I think is bloody fantastic to see in a video game). Many games feel the need to spell themselves out, but Transistor understands that you don’t need to spell everything out and that sometimes conclusions that players reach themselves feel all the more valuable because they had to reach for them alone. There are going to be a fair number of people who won’t feel like delving into the narrative of Transistor and that’s fine. However, those people will be missing out on part of what makes this game truly great. The Transistor can absorb the fragments a person leaves behind after their death and make use of their power in combat. While the gameplay of Transistor initially feels very similar to the action-oriented gameplay of Bastion, a major addition changes everything. The Transistor allows the player to stop time and plan out a certain number of actions, which then unfold within the span of a half-second. This lends the game an almost turn-based feel as the time-stopping mechanic takes several seconds to recharge after being expended, during which the player is left vulnerable and unable to use (most) abilities. There are four ability slots that are open at any given time, each with one open augment slot (which can be upgraded to two augment slots), and later in the game there are unlockable passive skill slots. There are tons of different ability combinations for players to explore and discover what configurations they prefer. However, for those curious about the world and characters of Cloudbank, no combination will be satisfactory for long. Every person that the Transistor absorbs has a story and you unlock different pieces of their story by using their power as a main ability, and augmentation, or as a passive. If you want to discover everything about Transistor, you’ll be constantly forced to incorporate new abilities in different ways and adapt your strategies accordingly. While background information might not be enough of a motivation for some players to experiment with their preferred abilities, I found it to be very effective at getting me out of comfortable ruts with tried and true strategies. Right up until the end of the game I continued to acquire new soul fragments; only reverting to what I found to be my most powerful ability configuration for the final, climactic battle. While I found Transistor to be at a well-balanced difficulty, players looking for more of a challenge will be able to use unlockable limiters to give themselves combat restrictions in order to get more experience points. While the meat of Transistor revolves around its combat, there are many small, caring touches that make the game world feel a bit more human. These little things range from a button that allows Red to hold the Transistor tightly and hum along with the background music to a short pizza party sequence that results from interacting with a certain terminal. Those two examples might not seem like much, but they make the characters feel like people rather than pawns. Those slight moments inform and reinforce the rest of the game while simultaneously serving to briefly lighten the mood. Heavy topics arose throughout my time of Transistor and having some breaks, however short they might be, from looming catastrophe was welcome. Transistor’s world is dramatic, bold, and beautiful largely due to the work of art director Jen Zee and composer Darren Korb. Transistor is doubtlessly some of the finest work that either of them have ever done. You could take a screenshot from just about any portion of Transistor, crop out the UI elements, slap a frame on it and it would look right at home in an art exhibit. Seriously, I cannot emphasize how gorgeous I found Transistor. The lovely visuals are likewise complimented by an amazing techno-jazz-electronica-noir soundtrack that seemed to insistently pull me forward, giving me a sense of urgency. The few tracks that make use of Ashley Barrett’s incredible voice serve as a reminder of what Red has lost. For all of the energy present in the Korb’s excellent soundtrack, many of the pieces contain hints of sadness and loss, heralding the direction events are destined to take. (Warning: The Transistor soundtrack contains some light spoilers) Conclusion: Transistor is not a game to play if you are looking to turn your brain off. The combat asks for tactics and the story requires some thought. It isn’t a long game, easily finished in two or three sittings, but it needs a certain level of engagement. It tells a tale of heartbreaking reprisal and presents moral questions to its audience. Some players might be dismayed at the lack of choices and exploration. However, Transistor is largely an on-rails sort of experience; not having a large degree of player choice or exploration aren’t bad things, they are simply different ways to make a game. As a game, Transistor is a deep and thoroughly enjoyable experience. As a narrative, Transistor sits as one of the best video game tragedies of all time. Transistor was reviewed on PC. It is currently also available on PlayStation 4
  4. I believe that Transistor would classify as one of the few genuine video game tragedies, though such classification could doubtless be debated to death. Transistor is a game of paradoxes and mysteries. It is a tragedy, but it is also a tale of revenge. It focuses on the end of the world and the beginning of a new one. It is about an eloquent singer without a voice. Supergiant Games designed almost everything in Transistor with multiple purposes in mind. While this might seem confusing at first, it is really a dazzling testament to the talent at Supergiant Games. All the individual pieces of Transistor click together to create a cohesive and interesting whole that is shocking, beautiful, and full of silent rage. Inevitably people will compare Transistor with Supergiant Games’ first project, Bastion. On a purely surface level, Transistor shares a similar sense of style and world-building with its predecessor. It is highly stylized, played from an isometric perspective, and there is a constant voice helping to clarify the narrative and objectives. However, in almost every other respect it is an entirely different sort of beast. Nothing in Transistor is straightforward. The story begins with a murder gone wrong and a stolen voice. Red, the protagonist, was a famous and influential singer in the city of Cloudbank, until a group of individuals known as the Camerata attempted to silence her permanently. They only half succeeded. Though they stole her voice and managed to kill the mysterious man who was with her at the time, Red finds herself armed with the assassins’ weapon: the sword-like Transistor. Rather than run and escape Cloudbank, Red decides to take the fight to the Camerata just as a strange mass of creatures known as The Process begin to tear the world apart. Most of the talking done in the game is done by the Transistor itself which has absorbed the soul of the unknown man who was killed instead of Red. Red herself can only communicate back by typing on the various terminals scattered throughout Cloudbank. Because of her lack of voice, Red’s motivations and intentions are left to the player to interpret and aren’t necessarily clear until the final moments of Transistor. The narrative takes some strange turns and brings up a lot of questions that it doesn’t completely answer, at least not after a preliminary playthrough. What starts out seeming like a simple, little story ends up asking huge questions that feel relevant to our rapidly advancing, digital society. After having a few days to mull it over, I think I have a firm grasp on what Transistor was all about, what it meant. I’ve been trying to think of a less pretentious way of saying this, but I haven’t been able to come up with one: Transistor’s narrative doesn’t stoop to accommodate everyone. It requires a bit of effort on the part of the player to understand and piece together what happened over the course of the game. It isn’t a grand mystery, but it is an exercise in interpretation (which I think is bloody fantastic to see in a video game). Many games feel the need to spell themselves out, but Transistor understands that you don’t need to spell everything out and that sometimes conclusions that players reach themselves feel all the more valuable because they had to reach for them alone. There are going to be a fair number of people who won’t feel like delving into the narrative of Transistor and that’s fine. However, those people will be missing out on part of what makes this game truly great. The Transistor can absorb the fragments a person leaves behind after their death and make use of their power in combat. While the gameplay of Transistor initially feels very similar to the action-oriented gameplay of Bastion, a major addition changes everything. The Transistor allows the player to stop time and plan out a certain number of actions, which then unfold within the span of a half-second. This lends the game an almost turn-based feel as the time-stopping mechanic takes several seconds to recharge after being expended, during which the player is left vulnerable and unable to use (most) abilities. There are four ability slots that are open at any given time, each with one open augment slot (which can be upgraded to two augment slots), and later in the game there are unlockable passive skill slots. There are tons of different ability combinations for players to explore and discover what configurations they prefer. However, for those curious about the world and characters of Cloudbank, no combination will be satisfactory for long. Every person that the Transistor absorbs has a story and you unlock different pieces of their story by using their power as a main ability, and augmentation, or as a passive. If you want to discover everything about Transistor, you’ll be constantly forced to incorporate new abilities in different ways and adapt your strategies accordingly. While background information might not be enough of a motivation for some players to experiment with their preferred abilities, I found it to be very effective at getting me out of comfortable ruts with tried and true strategies. Right up until the end of the game I continued to acquire new soul fragments; only reverting to what I found to be my most powerful ability configuration for the final, climactic battle. While I found Transistor to be at a well-balanced difficulty, players looking for more of a challenge will be able to use unlockable limiters to give themselves combat restrictions in order to get more experience points. While the meat of Transistor revolves around its combat, there are many small, caring touches that make the game world feel a bit more human. These little things range from a button that allows Red to hold the Transistor tightly and hum along with the background music to a short pizza party sequence that results from interacting with a certain terminal. Those two examples might not seem like much, but they make the characters feel like people rather than pawns. Those slight moments inform and reinforce the rest of the game while simultaneously serving to briefly lighten the mood. Heavy topics arose throughout my time of Transistor and having some breaks, however short they might be, from looming catastrophe was welcome. Transistor’s world is dramatic, bold, and beautiful largely due to the work of art director Jen Zee and composer Darren Korb. Transistor is doubtlessly some of the finest work that either of them have ever done. You could take a screenshot from just about any portion of Transistor, crop out the UI elements, slap a frame on it and it would look right at home in an art exhibit. Seriously, I cannot emphasize how gorgeous I found Transistor. The lovely visuals are likewise complimented by an amazing techno-jazz-electronica-noir soundtrack that seemed to insistently pull me forward, giving me a sense of urgency. The few tracks that make use of Ashley Barrett’s incredible voice serve as a reminder of what Red has lost. For all of the energy present in the Korb’s excellent soundtrack, many of the pieces contain hints of sadness and loss, heralding the direction events are destined to take. (Warning: The Transistor soundtrack contains some light spoilers) Conclusion: Transistor is not a game to play if you are looking to turn your brain off. The combat asks for tactics and the story requires some thought. It isn’t a long game, easily finished in two or three sittings, but it needs a certain level of engagement. It tells a tale of heartbreaking reprisal and presents moral questions to its audience. Some players might be dismayed at the lack of choices and exploration. However, Transistor is largely an on-rails sort of experience; not having a large degree of player choice or exploration aren’t bad things, they are simply different ways to make a game. As a game, Transistor is a deep and thoroughly enjoyable experience. As a narrative, Transistor sits as one of the best video game tragedies of all time. Transistor was reviewed on PC. It is currently also available on PlayStation 4 View full article
  5. Supergiant Games has released a new batch of screenshots alongside the official launch date of their next isometric action-RPG. On May 20, Transistor (which we played at E3 last year) will hit PlayStation 4 via PSN and PC through Steam and the Supergiant Games website. It will retail for $19.99 worldwide. The voice-over work will be in English, while the text will have localization options in French, Spanish, Italian, German, Russian, and Portuguese. You can view screenshots for Transistor on the Extra Life Facebook page. View full article
  6. Supergiant Games has released a new batch of screenshots alongside the official launch date of their next isometric action-RPG. On May 20, Transistor (which we played at E3 last year) will hit PlayStation 4 via PSN and PC through Steam and the Supergiant Games website. It will retail for $19.99 worldwide. The voice-over work will be in English, while the text will have localization options in French, Spanish, Italian, German, Russian, and Portuguese. You can view screenshots for Transistor on the Extra Life Facebook page.
  7. At E3 2013, Sony went out of its way to demonstrate its support of indie titles and developers, dedicating a large section of their booth area specifically to independent games. One of the games on display was Supergiant Games’ Transistor which I was able to play for a sizable chunk of time. The demo of Transistor began with text, explaining that assassins had been silencing the important voices of Cloudbank one by one and that Red, one of the most famous and beloved singers in the city, was next. These assassins, who belong to a group known as “The Process,” fail to kill Red, but succeed in taking her voice. Red is saved by clutching onto the Transistor, a sword-like device that contains a sentient intelligence and can absorb other minds into its own. The Transistor whisks Red to safety on the other side of Cloudbank, where it explains to her what it is and who The Process are. Red sheds her impractical singer’s garb and takes off on the run from the homicidal machines of The Process. As I progressed through the level, I encountered people who had recently died or were dying. The Transistor was able to communicate with them and convince their souls to come along on the adventure, absorbing them into itself. Each time this occurred, a new ability was unlocked to use in battle. After unlocking all the abilities in the demo, I was able to attack with a short-range shockwave, a long-range piercing laser, a devastating cluster bomb attack, and teleport dash through obstacles and enemies to use sneak attacks. Much like Supergiant Games’ critically acclaimed Bastion, combat occurs in real-time. However, players can now freeze time and plan out their next few moves in advance before executing them in quick succession. This adds a very enjoyable layer of strategy to engaging enemies in combat. Players won’t be able to use this ability continuously. A bar at the top of the screen depletes after each usage, and players will need to wait until it fills back up again to unleash their strategic fury upon their foes. There are light RPG elements to the combat, as well. You can see how much life enemies have and how much damage you do to them. After a combo done in strategic mode, a small message will appear next to an enemy which tells you how well you did against it. I actually laughed out loud after I unleashed a flurry of attacks against a boss creature and the message progressed from “Great!” to “Overkill” to “Seriously, can’t you read?” Transistor felt really at home on the PS4. The Supergiant team did a great job mapping the controls to appropriate and natural feeling buttons and creating a pretty self-explanatory HUD. Each attack was mapped to one of the controller’s face buttons, while R2 controlled the time freeze ability. There was just something intangibly satisfying about destroying enemies in both real-time and in the lightning strikes following the time freeze. Given that Red has lost her voice, the Transistor becomes her voice. It talks constantly, explaining the world and monologue-ing about the state of affairs in which the two find themselves. The demo ends with the Transistor urging her to escape, but Red silently riding her motorcycle back into the heart of Cloudbank with the amazed Transistor in tow. I honestly couldn't wait to see what happened next and how abilities would be expanded and improved further along in the game. Visually and audibly, Transistor impressed me. I even heard that someone (i.e. me) put the trailer for Supergiant Games’ next hit on loop in a YouTube playlist, just to hear its music and see the visuals. But don’t just take my word for it. You can watch the trailer below: Transistor will release in early 2014 on PS4 and PC.
  8. At E3 2013, Sony went out of its way to demonstrate its support of indie titles and developers, dedicating a large section of their booth area specifically to independent games. One of the games on display was Supergiant Games’ Transistor which I was able to play for a sizable chunk of time. The demo of Transistor began with text, explaining that assassins had been silencing the important voices of Cloudbank one by one and that Red, one of the most famous and beloved singers in the city, was next. These assassins, who belong to a group known as “The Process,” fail to kill Red, but succeed in taking her voice. Red is saved by clutching onto the Transistor, a sword-like device that contains a sentient intelligence and can absorb other minds into its own. The Transistor whisks Red to safety on the other side of Cloudbank, where it explains to her what it is and who The Process are. Red sheds her impractical singer’s garb and takes off on the run from the homicidal machines of The Process. As I progressed through the level, I encountered people who had recently died or were dying. The Transistor was able to communicate with them and convince their souls to come along on the adventure, absorbing them into itself. Each time this occurred, a new ability was unlocked to use in battle. After unlocking all the abilities in the demo, I was able to attack with a short-range shockwave, a long-range piercing laser, a devastating cluster bomb attack, and teleport dash through obstacles and enemies to use sneak attacks. Much like Supergiant Games’ critically acclaimed Bastion, combat occurs in real-time. However, players can now freeze time and plan out their next few moves in advance before executing them in quick succession. This adds a very enjoyable layer of strategy to engaging enemies in combat. Players won’t be able to use this ability continuously. A bar at the top of the screen depletes after each usage, and players will need to wait until it fills back up again to unleash their strategic fury upon their foes. There are light RPG elements to the combat, as well. You can see how much life enemies have and how much damage you do to them. After a combo done in strategic mode, a small message will appear next to an enemy which tells you how well you did against it. I actually laughed out loud after I unleashed a flurry of attacks against a boss creature and the message progressed from “Great!” to “Overkill” to “Seriously, can’t you read?” Transistor felt really at home on the PS4. The Supergiant team did a great job mapping the controls to appropriate and natural feeling buttons and creating a pretty self-explanatory HUD. Each attack was mapped to one of the controller’s face buttons, while R2 controlled the time freeze ability. There was just something intangibly satisfying about destroying enemies in both real-time and in the lightning strikes following the time freeze. Given that Red has lost her voice, the Transistor becomes her voice. It talks constantly, explaining the world and monologue-ing about the state of affairs in which the two find themselves. The demo ends with the Transistor urging her to escape, but Red silently riding her motorcycle back into the heart of Cloudbank with the amazed Transistor in tow. I honestly couldn't wait to see what happened next and how abilities would be expanded and improved further along in the game. Visually and audibly, Transistor impressed me. I even heard that someone (i.e. me) put the trailer for Supergiant Games’ next hit on loop in a YouTube playlist, just to hear its music and see the visuals. But don’t just take my word for it. You can watch the trailer below: Transistor will release in early 2014 on PS4 and PC. View full article
×
×
  • Create New...