Discover the world of Transistor, a sci-fi-themed action RPG from the creators of Bastion.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (5,464 reviews)
Release Date: May 20, 2014

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Recommended By Curators

"Supergiant remains consistent with a visually stunning narrative experience backed up by a surprisingly deep combat system. Short, but replayable."
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“Transistor is a wildly smart action-RPG that places all of its trust into your intelligence.”
9.0 / 10 – IGN

“The game’s vision is intoxicating, and its execution is inspired.”
8.5 / 10 – Polygon

“Its art style is divine, its soundtrack is remarkable, its combat is intricate, and the story of its odd-couple protagonists is both smartly written and deftly told.”
9 / 10 – Edge

About This Game

From the creators of Bastion, Transistor is a sci-fi themed action RPG that invites you to wield an extraordinary weapon of unknown origin as you fight through a stunning futuristic city. Transistor seamlessly integrates thoughtful strategic planning into a fast-paced action experience, melding responsive gameplay and rich atmospheric storytelling. During the course of the adventure, you will piece together the Transistor's mysteries as you pursue its former owners.

Key Features
  • An all-new world from the team that created Bastion
  • Configure the powerful Transistor with thousands of possible Function combinations
  • Action-packed real-time combat fused with a robust strategic planning mode
  • Vibrant hand-painted artwork in full 1080p resolution
  • Original soundtrack changes dynamically as the action unfolds
  • Hours of reactive voiceover create a deep and atmospheric story
  • 'Recursion' option introduces procedural battles after finishing the story
  • Fully customizable controls custom-tailored for PC

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7 32-bit
    • Processor: Dual Core CPU - 2.6ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 1GB of VRAM: Intel HD 3000 GPU / AMD HD 5450 / Nvidia 9400 GT
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: 10.7.5
    • Processor: Dual Core CPU - 2.6ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0+ (2.1 with ARB extensions acceptable)
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: glibc 2.15+, 32/64-bit
    • Processor: Dual Core CPU - 2.6ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0+ (2.1 with ARB extensions acceptable)
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
Helpful customer reviews
52 of 70 people (74%) found this review helpful
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
Hell, It's worth it just for the music...
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21 of 24 people (88%) found this review helpful
19.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
There is a legitimate argument to be made that Transistor is too short for its price. I beat it in about 11 hours, although I'm only about halfway through with Achieves. I think this is a bit of a silly metric, though. The more key question to me is "was it a good experience".

I'd say "absolutely". It's a deeply beautiful and atmospheric game, with a bittersweet story told through powerful narration and themes. It also effectively uses game mechanics to pull you 'into' the story and world. It has a 'hum' button. There are several scenes where the controls and gameplay shift to make the player 'feel' the scenes. Basically, it's one of the best examples I've played of a game avoiding ludnarrative dissonance.

Transistor left me with that same feeling of satisfaction I get after finishing a good book. I like that feeling. I liked Transistor. Definitely recommended.
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20 of 25 people (80%) found this review helpful
40.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
TL;DR Version: 10/10 srsly this game is freakin' stellar

I can't recommend this game enough. It's seriously one of the most stunning games I've ever played. When I rank games in my head, listing them with all their faults in mind, all I can say is that Transistor is the ONLY game that I've played that has no faults.

Where do I start? I guess I can open up with the gameplay. Transistor does a fantastic job at letting you customize your moves. The pacing is fantastic- it does a very good job at easing the mechanics for you early on. For example, you start with a quick jab, and a long charging shot. Eventually you get an attack that is like a weak AoE. Pretty simple stuff, yeah? But then it tells you you can apply similar properties of powers to another, like combining them. Now your long-charge shot can split into multiples. And THEN you can apply powers to yourself, and not your other powers, to change up gameplay. The flexibility in powers allows for such a massively open-ended way to play. It's a simple 3-choice system that really allows the player to pick how they choose to play.

The story is pretty interesting. It's nothing fantastic enough to win awards, but the way that they present you the story makes it interesting. Cloudbank is a mysterious place, and their little terminals and hints in dialogue makes you keep guessing what it really is. The characters, though, are rather lackluster save for Red and the Transistor. There are only 3 voices in the game, and one of them is simple grunts and humming. The Transistor character, voiced by the same fantastic narrator from Bastion, is the main spotlight for his character. The other characters, the Camerata, aren't so fleshed out.

The art and sound styles are fantastic. This shouldn't really be a point to deter anyone, as these are just aesthetics. But when something is so stellar and outstandish in a game, I need to point it out. This game has STYLE. It's a beautiful, artsy, cyberpunk experience that's complete with everything that you need to keep you immersed.

There's really only one problem with this game. I want more. It's so good, but it's a straight-forward story game that won't take you longer than 10 hours. I want more of Cloudbank. I want more of the Transistor combat. I want more, more, more! The ending made me satisfied, but I was sad that it was over.

Do yourself a favor. Buy this game. It's very, very good.
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17 of 21 people (81%) found this review helpful
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 8
#Discussions_QuoteBlock_Author
I see the spine of the world.
I know it's mine, twisted and tied.
BTW, my favorite soundtracks:
    [1]The Spine [2]In Circles [3]We All Become
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11 of 12 people (92%) found this review helpful
5.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
This game is short.
Real short. I finish this game in about 5 hours
But those 5 hours really worth the damn money!

The Music or Soundtrack or whatever is just Amazing!!
The Graphic in this game is kinda artistic. looks different and original
Combat system is superb. you can plan your attack rather than charging ahead!!!

The story is so f*cking good i had a great time with this game storyline and it's really something.
Word of warning though this game made me had a Great F**king existential crisis
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9 of 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
35.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 8
Uniting both action RPG mechanics and an engrossing world, Transistor isn’t just a spiritual successor to Bastion, it’s a full blown messianic triumph of beautiful art and sublime game design. Supergiant Games have exceeded their previous work with a game that marries fluent action RPG combat with sublime tactical planning & customisation. Yet that would be just half of Transistor's charm as the world, characters and narrative unfolds like an origami swan, leaving you to marvel at its gorgeous art design, intricate architecture and unique atmosphere.

The story begins with you, Red, claiming the Transistor from the body of a dead man. From there you begin to uncover the city of Cloudbank, why everyone has gone and what The Process is - sentient machine aggressors within this fallen Rapture. That reference is deliberate as there’s a little touch of Bioshock within Transistor - a fallen city, the mystery of its unravelling and tragedy yours to discover if you’re willing to put in the work to unlock its true secrets. This is made all the more acute by how Transistor welcomes you into its world with no fanfare, no menu screen. Just a fade from black opening up on your journey with the Transistor, voiced by the rich tones of Logan Cunningham, against The Process and their mysterious overlords - The Camarata.

To say any more would spoil the joy of discovering the details for yourself. Supergiant ames had deliberately kept details of Transistor to a minimum until release and it’s thanks to this blackout that’s made discovering the games systems, people and places a genuine joy.

It’s difficult to review Transistor without referencing Supergiant Games previous work - Bastion. That’s because its influences are plain to see with the same isometric-style viewpoint, similar art-style and even the same narrator. While those similarities may appear as merely iterative steps on paper for Transistor, they are in practice the opposite. The art style has evolved to be not just gorgeous, moody and atmospheric, it now conveys the spirit of Cloudbank without ever explicitly showing it in such a way that you feel part of that city, not just an observer with a controller.

Combat is real time action-RPG based with four main skills available at one time. You can freeze the action once your Turn() bar has filled at any time and then plan out your attacks methodically. Once done you can unfreeze the game and Red will perform her balletic combat attacks with the Transistor. This appears at first to just be a cool looking feature to break up combat scenarios but very soon it becomes essential to besting The Process.

In this frozen state you can see the damage you are likely to cause, the effect different attacks can have in combination with each other and use it to quickly get behind enemies to deliver backstab moves. There’s nothing quite like positioning yourself correctly, freezing time and then delivering a quick series of moves to destroy everything. I’m not especially clever but by Jove, Transistor made me feel like a combat genius.

As the story progresses you’ll acquire more skills and this is where the combat evolves from those mechanics set down originally by Bastion. Instead of just swapping out skills when you want a change, every skill can be slotted into a secondary or tertiary upgrade slot to augment an already installed ability.

For instance, the basic attack move you start with is Crash(). You can then modify it with a skill like Bounce() which will chain attacks to multiple targets. Or with Cull() that sends enemies into the air. Or you could use either of those modifiers as one of the four main abilities. Cull(), a basic uppercut move and Bounce(), a skill that sends out pulses of energy.

This enables you to define the combat system in any way you want it. Like aggressive frontal-assault tactics or stealthy concealment? Perhaps turning a few enemies on to your side floats your boat? Or maybe just a blend of different styles? Transistor allows you to do what you like with this combat system rather than force you down a particular road.

The only restriction is if your health is reduced to zero in combat. Instead of death, one of your abilities is overloaded and will require at least two trips to an access point in order to recover. Then there are the Limiters - status effects that reduce your capability in combat but with the rewards of increased experience. As you can tell, what appears as a simple combat system in the beginning soon evolves into a complex and involving way to deal with The Process.

The way that combat is combined with the narrative is just as intriguing. As you use these new abilities in different ways or combinations it unlocks more about the person you acquired them from in the first place. Slowly the pieces of this mysterious world start to come together as you become more adept at combat. It encourages creativity and a deeper understanding of the mechanics you're working with on order to unlock the secrets of Cloudbank.

But It’s not all dark alleyways and moody lighting as you’ll have access to a ‘backdoor’ - a safe haven separated from the unrelenting assimilation of the Process. This serves as a menu to access the different challenge rooms Transistor offers. Here you can test and refine your combat skills and increase your level. Or you can just kick back and listen to the ridiculously awesome soundtrack while lounging in a hammock.

This densely packed experience is made up of small touches like that. From the way Red drags around the weighty Transistor, to how she combs her hair with her fingertips when admiring a view, with the best of all being her ability, at the touch of a button, to hum along to the excellent soundtrack.

Before playing I didn’t expect to be fully enraptured by Transistor, thinking the spectre of Bastion would haunt the experience too much. But neither did I expect Transistor to take that formula and evolve it into something so sublime and handcrafted that tears would roll down my cheek as the credits rolled. From its combat mechanics and customisation, to the narrative and the visually appealing art-style, this is an experience to be savoured, to lock yourself away in the confines of your gaming boudoir and revel in its luxurious design and perfection.

Highly Recommended - MUST PLAY - 10/10

Be sure to check out Nerd House Gaming for more reviews!
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10 of 12 people (83%) found this review helpful
10.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
I loved this game, the soundtrack is amazing, and the combat, while it can be a little boring once you figure out the good combos, is still fun to learn.
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 6
Another banger by Supergiant Games.

Let me start by saying that Transistor's music is absoultely fantastic. It's composed by Darren Korb (also did the soundtrack for Bastion) it has a futuristic feel to it with a little bit of Noir in there. It's also neatly integrated into the game and its story. The protagonist is a singer for crying out loud.

Her name's Red, she's a singer, and her friend is now a talking sword. That's all you get at the begining of the game. Transistor's story is open ended, surprisingly heartfelt and imaginative. There are no clear-cut solutions or ideologies, the characters have their (sometimes questionable) motives, and it's hard to say what's what at times. The game is also very subtle about its themes. Very much like Bastion, you can speculate and fill in the gaps with your friends. Fun stuff.

Much like the story, the gameplay is brilliantly crafted and also very much open ended. Every bit of it is customisable, and the game makes you feel like you're in control of its systems. To simplify it- it's a real time action RPG. By pressing the right trigger you change it to a turn based structure, but it's more of a special power. The "turn" lasts only a short while but you can trample over the enemies without consequences as they are frozen in time, and you have a bunch of tools that can do the trampling.

Red has a large selection of abilities to chose from, each ability has three functions- active, powerup and passive. You can attach unused abilities as powerups for the ones that are active, or you can use them as passive powerups for your statistics. Some abilities deal damage, some persuade, some create distance between you and the enemy, which you will need, as the enemies are tricky to handle (when they're not frozen in time that is). You will have to mix and match, see what works best, and then change it again. The game encourages experimentation- change your character's presets as many times as you want, it's easy and free of charge. The game's too forgiving? Obliterating enemies left and right? You can make the enemies harder and gain more experience. It's all customisable. Supergiant Games definitely built upon the already well made systems seen in Bastion and greatly improved them.

Heck, the whole thing's really well made. And, well, gosh darnit. Ain't this the prettiest darn game I have ever laid my blue eyes upon. This game's graphics are something special, tell you hwat. Inspired by Art Deco, its futuristic vistas are just... Just beautiful. A little bit confuisng to get through at times perhaps, but with these looks, hey, who's complaining.

The only criticism I have is that its story is too short. Now don't get me wrong, the story is really well made and doesn't drag, but you can finish it in 5-6 hours. Now, that's great, I like a well made story, if it has to be around 6 hours to present itself the right way, the way the author intended, great. but you WILL want to play more of it after you've seen the ending, and it is a shame that you will have to start up New Game+ to do so.

The good news is that the New Game+ mode is really well made and has some additional stuff in it. Everything transfers and the difficulty ramps up. Heck, they even change up the enemy spawns, so it's definitely worth a second playthrough. Plus- there's no way you're going to reach the level cap during your first run through Thransistor, so there's a bunch of new stuff you'll get to play with.

Well, that's a minor gripe, this is A+ material for sure. It's obvious that these guys know what they're doing, and every part of this game has been meticulously crafted with much passion and hard work. Whatcha gonna do next Kasavin? Cause whatever it is, I'm listening.
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9 of 12 people (75%) found this review helpful
29.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
The down side .....


NOT LONG AT ALL!


The up side......

great story

great gameplay

great soundtrack

great voice acting

beautiful visuals

a strange but engaging story

in my humble opinion its one HELL of a great game.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
8.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 3
Transistor? I hardly knew 'er!
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7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
7.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
One of the most innovate and amazing games I've played in a while, just amazing.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
I am now about 5 hours in? I think I may be playing throught the first time slowly, but that's mainly because I'm taking my time to see if I miss anything and doing all the challenges. The whole atmosphere constructed by the art and soundtrack is very immersive.

Gameplay:

It's an interesting take on giving players a choice between etiher real-time womanliness combat (which I'm not woman enough to do) or "halting time" so you can plan out a series of executions (use a skill, move, use a skill, use a skill, move, etc.), and even a mix of both.

Have to admit though, the controls on the keyboard aren't too great, and while it isn't a huge issue, I am more inclinded to use the plan-it-out option in fights just to make sure I hit the right things.

Art:

What can I say? It's beautiful. It's breathtaking. It looks like it was a hell-of-lot of work to do, so kudos to the art team. It's really amazing.

Soundtrack:

For me, the fantastic song "We All Become" featured in the reveal trailer stands out the most. Yet, it and every soundtrack/song mixed into the Transistor experience are all really, really well done.

Storyline/Immersion:

I have yet to complete the storyline, but the whole game comes together well. The world is given life and the characters given silent voices. While the story isn't told in a straightforward manner, having the player piece it together on her/his own is a nice variation.

Transistor is a phenomal work of art that everyone should experience. 10/10.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 31
Picture perfect game, BUT! On 1920x1200 Display it all looks so very tiny, intentionaly zoomed out beautiful looking. It is at least clearly shown that way on the store page.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
11.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 3
A deserving follow-up to "Bastion",
The storytelling is sublime once again.

I really love the cyberpunk setting and computer references as a geek & programmer.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
Simply said: incredible game. Get it. Amazing art direction, great story, very fun gameplay. I can't come up with a single thing I didn't like.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
13.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
I love this game. A while after finishing Bastion, a game made by the same developers, I found out about Transistor and could not wait to try it out. I went into this game blind, so I wouldn't have any high expectations. The only thing I knew about this game was that this game was going to be awesome and pretty. So after actually playing the game, I felt like it was worth every penny and even more than that.

The game has a beautiful storyline. I love the characters and the amazing voice acting, and the character development will make you love the protoganists or even the antagonists for sure. Fitting with the beautiful storyline comes the amazing graphics that the developers brought to you. Every stage, every fight, every moment is basically a breathtaking piece of art, hand-painted. Not to forget the beautiful soundtracks that each fit in their respective part in the game, keeping the atmosphere intact like you're stuck in another universe.

But don't let the radiance of the graphics and the fluent tunes distract you, because the combat mechanics are something to keep your attention on. It's original and not repetitive at all. You can unlock new abilities on the go, keeping you change your strategy from time to time because you keep getting more to play with. If you don't, you'll have a hard time beating the game.

In the end, if the game still hasn't gotten you in their grasp with their story, character development, graphics or music then it will try with the replayability that's available in this game. Finishing the game does not mean being done with it, because of the "Recursion" option, introducing procedural battle after finishing the end boss.

If you love a pretty game with a nice story, I definitely recommend buying it. If it's on a sale, then don't hesitate to buy it because it will definitely be worth it.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
23.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
Worth your time- you can tell how much time, talent, & effort was put into the game. Personally played through it twice thoroughly- enjoyed it the further I pushed with the limiters. The only downside is once you've completed everything, pushed everything to the max, and unlocked everything - you've reached the apex of the game and there's nowhere else to go except through the linear progression again or experiment with combinations you haven't worked with before. Again - would reccomend.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
9.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
The art is awesome.

The soundtrack is awesome.

The combat system is awesome.

The story is awesome.

Seriously, I don't think there was a single thing I disliked in this game. I fell in love in the first minutes, got hooked and finished it in one sitting, because I couldn't stop playing.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 7
It was suspicious enough after Bastion that the guys at Supergiant know something. This game has ambience, immense fun, fine-grained control of difficulty implemented as an in-game feature, different play styles and combos, etc.
It might sound weird but this game is exactly what I need after a long day of coding. #D~

A brilliant piece of work. I would really want to spend an afternoon in the Sandbox() with the developers just talking.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
7.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 31
If you liked Bastion, you should buy Transistor.
If you like heartrendingly beautiful games, you should buy Transistor.
If you like games that constantly force you to adapt and reevaluate how you're approaching a challenge, you should buy Transistor.
If you're a human being, you should buy Transistor.

In all seriousness, coming to Transistor from Bastion, I was a little worried. Bastion had extremely tight and hugely enjoyable gameplay, and it seemed like Transistor was discarding that for a slowed down, more strategic approach. I could not have been any more wrong.

Transistor provides a system that is pretty easy to learn and grows in complexity and versatility as you progress, allowing you to really tailor your abilities to how you want to play. Unused abilities become modifiers for your equipped abilities or modifiers for your character herself, allowing you to constantly alter your playstyle. You pick the pace at which you fight, choosing whether to focus on fighting in real time, or relying more on using the “time freeze” mechanic to stop time and allow you to plan a whole flurry of attacks in quick succession.

Regardless of this flexibility in playstyle, if your health hits zero, instead of dying and starting over, you lose one of your abilities randomly. This serves an elegant two fold purpose. On one hand, it provides punishment for the player who failed to stay alive, removing an ability that that player specifically wanted to use. On the other hand, because that ability is now removed from the game for a while, the player is forced to mix and match and experiment with whatever abilities are left in the ability pool. To stay alive, the player must adapt.

And there is some satisfaction to be had from being forced to adapt. By forcing your hand, Transistor challenges your creativity, your willingness to change the way you think or to try something new. It sits on the precipice of balancing hugely gratifying gameplay with a breathtaking world and a resonating story, and does not disappoint.

You should probably go buy it.
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