Transistor PS4 review

  • Posted May 24th, 2014 at 11:41 EDT by Adam Byrne

Review Score

Transistor

PSU Review Score
9.0
Avg. user review score:
0.0

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Summary

The enticing narrative, interlaced with gripping story-mechanics, all culminating in a fittingly poignant finale make Transistor a game that deserves to find its home in as many PlayStation 4's as possible.

We like

  • Immaculately-conceived game world.
  • Refreshingly dynamic gameplay system.
  • Narrative structure and delivery is top notch.

We dislike

  • A little more enemy variety wouldn't go amiss.
  • Some may find issue with length.

See PSU's review on Metacritic & GameRankings

Once your slots are assigned to one-button commands the customized experience ascends to a further level by allowing you to approach the game’s enemies in real-time by tapping your newly-created attacks in a furious foray of expression, or by activating a turn-based system with a swift push of R2. For the latter, players can map out their pathways of attack and execute an oftentimes stunning series of moves, devastating the numerous foes unlucky enough to be standing in the general vicinity of the strike. Both offensive avenues expend part of an energy gauge that’s placed atop of the screen, and the amount of energy dictates what series of attacks Red can produce; there’s also a momentary period of downtime necessary to recuperate the gauge, within which you’ll find yourself cowering and dodging in the face of increasingly hostile enemy attacks. Additionally – as if the gameplay wasn’t malleable enough - players can modify aspects of the difficulty by applying as many as ten ‘limiters’, which attempt to hinder your advancement in several creative means, whilst at the same time granting a further percentage of experience used for levelling up after seeing off whatever section of enemies.

Such is Transistor's combative depth, a single playthrough simply isn’t large enough to cater for all the variants possible within the gameplay mechanics. Luckily developer Supergiant Games has prepared for such an eventuality by creating a ‘recursion mode’, which is unlocked upon completion of the game for the first time. The mode effectively acts as ‘New Game+’, allowing players to retain all their functions and to continue levelling up in order to unlock the rest of what the game has to offer; enemy strength is altered accordingly, of course, as is their patterns, meaning that no single playthrough will ever quite be the same. The one drawback to a continual playthrough is perhaps the slight lack of enemy variation at certain periods of the game – thankfully the dynamic gameplay never allows the level of enjoyment to substantially drop but there’s certainly something to be said for more advanced enemies to mirror the malleable combat.

Just like that feeling of utter satisfaction when a young, budding artist unequivocally proves that their first song wasn’t a mere one-in-a-million fluke by releasing a second to equal triumph, Supergiant games has struck gold once again with its latest prismatic sci-fi title, combining an incredibly refreshing gameplay system with a lush, stimulating world that manages to cleverly nestle itself between that of a utopia and dystopia. The enticing narrative, interlaced with gripping story-mechanics, all culminating in a fittingly poignant finale make Transistor a game that deserves to find its home in as many PlayStation 4's as possible.

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Adam is a PSU editor and a recent English graduate of IADT in Ireland. When he’s not glued to the PlayStation or revelling in cheesy ‘80s action flicks you can find him talking nonsense on Twitter.
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Related information

  • Related game: Transistor

    Release date (US):
    December 31st, 2014
    Developer:
    Supergiant Games
    Genre:
    Action - RPG
    Rank:
    0 of 2,667 Games
    Up 0 places (in last 7 days)

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