Developer: Supergiant Games Publisher: Supergiant Games Genre: Action RPG Format(s): PS4, Windows
Transistor is the story of Red. When we first meet her, she’s kneeling over a corpse which has been bisected by a giant sword; then a voice whispers out of the weapon, calling to her, begging her to take up arms and flee the city as quickly as possible.
That’s the entire set up to the game, with the rest of the story revealed in brief, gorgeously animated cut scenes and through various interactions with the world. Narrative details are sparse but a tale of revenge and remorse slowly builds up, sending the player on a violent quest against a countless enemies and a new threat in the robotic Process.
Countless touches combine to make Transistor incredibly memorable – like the ability to stand and hum a tune while looking out over the city. It would seem pretentious elsewhere, but here these optional moments give you an insight into the voice that Red has lost and let you bask in the awe-inspiring art.
While it may be lacking in hand-holding, or even basic tutorials, Transistor is a supremely confident second release from Supergiant Games, giving players a spare narrative and unusual mechanics and assuming that they’ll just get on board. And somehow the self-aware tone and bizarre elements in the world all come together to create a game that’s more than the sum of its parts and destined to go down as one of the best indie titles of the year to date.