This week I had the pleasure of completing SuperGiant Games' latest release, Transistor. I decided to buy the game a week after it was released but was checking out any review and bits of information I could come across. During that time I was also listening to the games soundtrack.
Transistor is one of the best games that I've played so far this year. I put it up there with Second Son as a personal favorite. One thing that I began to appreciate after playing for a some time is that there is no tutorial. You start the game and within a few minutes you are thrown into the fire. No explanations just fight for your life. The big sellers for me are the RPG elements and overall combat.
The RPG elements work in a manner or attack upgrades. You have four slots that can be used but you get about 16 attacks to choose from. What do you do with the remaining attacks? You use them to augment the attacks that you are currently using. This brings an very good amount of depth and variety to your game play.
The overall combat is fairly fast paced. You will not be able to just go in and hack your way to success. They have a feature that is a "planning mode" where time pauses and you can plan out your attacks on your enemies. This is a very neat feature and one that becomes practically mandatory later on, especially depending on your loadout of choice.
I don't think I can speak highly enough of the games' soundtrack. It is simply phenomenal. While I do tend to listen to a games soundtrack while playing, this is one that stands on its own musically. There are about 5 tracks that have vocals but the entire project is very well done. If you never play Transistor, the soundtrack is available on its own and worth listening to.
The Story Being Told through the Music
While reading some information on the game I came across a comment from one of the team members at SuperGiant Games. They stated that those that listen to the soundtrack but didn't play the game would be spoiling the game and story. I initially had a look of confusion when reading this and didn't think it would be possible. Once I finally picked up the game I was going through the story and listening to the music that I was already quite familiar with from my time of solely listening to the sound track. While playing the game, the story and the music come together like few experiences that I have encountered before. I began to understand what the guy at SuperGiant was saying. Musically the game tells a story. It has climaxes. It has build up to tense moments. It has everything you expect from a story except that it is all audible.
Transistor is a really good game. The game play is nice. The story is nicer. The music is nicest part of the entire ensemble of components. Individually the pieces are very capable of standing on their own but together they are nothing short of a masterpiece of a video game.
If you would like to give the soundtrack a listen it is available here.