Transistor Review Roundup

The latest RPG from the creators of Bastion is out today for PS4 and PC, but is it a must-buy?

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Transistor, a sci-fi game from the creators of Bastion, released today on PC and PS4. In the game you play as a singer named Red who takes possession of the titular sword that was going to be used to kill her. Combining action-RPG gameplay with strategy elements, the game has generally been well received by critics.

On review aggregator Metacritic, Transistor is currently sitting at 85 for PS4 and 83 for PC.Here's a summary of some of the game's reviews:

Game Informer -- 9/10

Transistor’s focus on combat lets it shine, but one battle after the next results in a strictly linear path to game completion that can feel repetitive. ... Players looking to find all the answers by the time the credits roll are likely to be disappointed. Transistor is as much about what is left unsaid as what is explained. I find that openness to interpretation refreshing; I suspect I won’t be the only one. [Full review]

IGN -- 9/10

Transistor’s the kind of game that made me immediately jump back in to take on New Game Plus. I wanted to continue exploring the excellent combat in new, more challenging scenarios. I wanted to double back on the areas that I’d missed the first time through, and try to fill in the gaps of the fantastic story. But most of all, I wasn’t ready to leave Red or her world behind. [Full review]

USGamer -- 4.5/5

Transistor is the story of a girl and her sword and their quest to save their home from an unknowable destructive force. The freedom you're given to complete that goal through battle makes an interesting contrast to the unrelentingly linear road that takes you there; and the Transistor's running dialogue - alternately defiant, lost, confused, affectionate, and mournful -pulls you into the adventure while neither spelling things out too obviously or being too needlessly obfuscatory. Over the course of the journey, the bond between Red and her sword deepens. Until the end, where a single word contains more emotion than the entirety of most games. [Full review]

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GameSpot -- 8/10

Transistor is always a good-looking game, but in these instances, it demonstrates a rare knack for combining its visuals and music to powerfully convey both narrative information and tone, driving the story forward with Red's own unwavering resolve. So in the end, yes, Transistor is a fun action role-playing game with a neat combat system, but beautiful moments like these make it more than that. They make it a game with a soul. [Full review]

Joystiq -- 3.5/5

In the end, it's the unique digital world of Cloudbank and the refreshing combat that driveTransistor. The perfectly executed turn is consistently rewarding, while uncovering the dark side of Cloudbank and untangling the motives of the Camerata proves enticing enough to draw you along, even if the story doesn't strike all of its intended chords. [Full review]

Quarter to Three -- 2/5

Transistor starts off strong with its phenomenal soundtrack, striking visuals, lively animation, and intriguing premise. ... But Transistor’s promising start crumbles quickly, especially if you go into it thinking “yeah, these are the guys who did Bastion, all right”. The story is convoluted and brimming with extraneous detail, doled out at optional terminals and on unlockable screens you might never see. Names you’ve never heard waft into the game and suddenly one of them is important and you have no idea why. ...When I reviewed Bastion, I wrote the review as a list of 15 things all games can learn. For me, the real disappointment of Transistor is that developer Supergiant seems to have forgotten half those things. [Full review]

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