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Bastion Soundtrack Edition
Rock, Paper, Shotgun - firstname.lastname@example.org (Nathan Grayson)
Bastion was absolutely marvelous, and Transistor – aka, Bastion 2: Cyberpunk Boogaloo – very much looks to be following in its pathway summoning footsteps. But while surface-level similarities (a Logan-Cunningham-voiced narrator-type, bleak yet beautiful environments, a silent main character, isometric perspective, etc) might suggest a familiar experience, Supergiant definitely isn’t sticking to Bastion’s straight-and-narrow. Case in point: Transistor isn’t entirely a solo affair. As part of a gigantic interview/preview session (the full results of which you’ll see very soon), creative director Greg Kasavin explained to RPS that the action/turn-based tactics RPG hybrid will include a fairly novel form of multiplayer functionality.
Bastion creators Supergiant recently revealed their next game, Transistor. In it, protagonist Red finds a giant USB stick, and promptly destroys a legion of robots while trying to figure out where their input port is located. I can sympathise. You never get the bloody things the right way round first try.
Oh wait, it's actually a whopping great big sword - the eponymous Transistor - acting as both Red's weapon against the robotic onslaught, and the means with which Supergiant can pipe the smooth tones of Logan Cunningham directly into our ears. You can see and hear that it in action in this 15 minute PAX East game demo, courtesy of YouTuber Total Biscuit.
You can also see that same footage, this time with Total Biscuit interviewing Supergiant's Greg Kasavin. Kasivin details Transistor's planned combat, which expands from Bastion's real-time ARPG nature with a new strategic planning mode. Here you use action points to plan movement and attacks, which can be quickly executed, letting you pull off complicated plans without relying on twitch keyboard skills.
Enemies will have specific weaknesses to target in strategic mode. In the video, you can see the Young Lady robot type has, like many of us, a weakness to backstabs. But the same enemy teleports away with each hit, leaving a shadow copy that also opens fire. "This is a game in which you start with the ultimate weapon right at the very beginning," Kasavin says. As a result, enemies are designed to keep you thinking through the sword's abilities, and constantly switching between real-time and planning modes.
Transistor is out Early 2014. Platforms are still to be announced.
Supergiant - that's the developers of the fantastic Bastion, and not some sort of king of the giants - have announced their next game. It's called Transistor, it looks fab, and Logan Cunningham (the voice of Rucks) is back "in a vocal capacity". Well, I'm sure he makes a mean omelette, but that's the part of him we wanted - so grand. Read on for more details, plus the exciting reveal trailer.
As you can see, Transistor's isometric combat looks pretty similar to Bastion's, so fans of whacking gasfellas with a giant hammer should be well catered for. This game's set in a new world, with a new protagonist: a currently unnamed woman wielding a massive sword. However, it's a massive sword with a shady past - aren't they always? Here's the lowdown, from that Supergiant post:
"In Transistor, players assume the role of a young woman who gains control of a powerful weapon after a mysterious group of assailants nearly kills her with it. Now she must fight from street to street against forces that will stop at nothing to recover the weapon. During the course of the adventure, players will piece together the Transistor’s mysteries as they pursue its former owners." I bet the sword used to be a dagger, or something.
Transistor will be playable at PAX East in Boston this week, if you happen to be going, so we'll see and hear more of the game very soon.
The Humble Bundle has evolved. No, not into a Wartortle - the charitable pay-what-you-want initiative is set to get humbler and bundlier and even more regular with the announcement of The Humble Weekly Sale, which will offer a new game for your consideration every Tuesday. The first deal goes live now, with the wonderful Bastion. As ever you can pay what you want for a DRM-free copy of the game (on Windows, Mac and Linux), though a donation of $1 or more will also get you a Steam key. If you beat the average you'll get extra digital content; spend $25 or more and you'll get physical merch thrown in too, including an actual Bastion bandana. Just the thing for when you wake up in a world of floating islands, with Logan Cunningham narrating everything you do.
Here's the full list of additional gubbins. Pay over the average to unlock:
Bastion Digital Soundtrack (MP3/FLAC)
Exclusive Bastion Digital Art Pack, featuring never-before-seen artwork
Bastion Sheet Music
Bastion iPhone/Android Ringtones
While $25 or more will also get you:
Bastion Original Soundtrack CD
A real Bastion bandana
A Bastion postcard
A postcard for Supergiant’s newly-announced next game, Transistor!
As usual, you can choose how much of your money you want to give to the devs or to charity - the charities in this case being the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Child's Play.
Oh and here's what Bastion looks like, in case you've forgotten somehow:
If you ask me, Supergiant Games' Bastion was one of the best games to come out in the last few years. So, a new game from that indie dev studio is great news.
The glimpses of gameplay make it seem like Transistor shares some of Bastion's DNA, but the visuals are more Akira/Blade Runner than SNES retro-toon RPG. It looks cool and sounds great. Here's what Supergiant is saying about the game:
In Transistor, players assume the role of a young woman who gains control of a powerful weapon after a mysterious group of assailants nearly kills her with it. Now she must fight from street to street against forces that will stop at nothing to recover the weapon. During the course of the adventure, players will piece together the Transistor's mysteries as they pursue its former owners.
We expect Transistor to be released in early 2014. We have not yet decided on which platform or platforms the game will be available for.
Transistor will be playable at PAX East. Can't wait to learn more.
Rock, Paper, Shotgun - email@example.com (Nathan Grayson)
When I say “Supergiant,” what do you think of? No, no, after an image of a particularly muscular giant wearing a cape. OK, no, but before the word loses all meaning and deconstructs into “Superg Iant,” which… what? Yes, correct, you think of Bastion. And that’s perfectly fair. After all, it is, so far, the only game that’s found the magically materializing path out of the little colossus that could’s lair. So naturally, SG’s “the Bastion company” in the eyes of most. It does twangy Western-flavored tales and narrators with voices made of gravel-bedazzled silk. But, while there are certainly far worse ways to be pigeonholed, co-founder Amir Rao isn’t interested in confining his company to a nigh-inescapable box.
A controller gets put down. A disc gets shelved next to dozens of others just like it. But, sometimes, the game lingers. It creeps into your sleep and live on in the backs of your eyelids, demanding ever more from you.
Here's an example: the one night that the crazy nocturnal zombies from Alan Wake showed up in my head. I was me in my dream, and not the overwrought author that's starred in two games.
I hadn't played an Alan Wake game in more than eight months. But a nightmare I had about a month ago threw me into a world straight out of Remedy's psychological horror thriller. I wasn't wielding a flashlight and automatic weapons like the writer hero of the two games. I was in trouble, prey for powerful enemies without any special video game abilities.
I don't know why some games stick around my subconscious more than others. Long after I've left them behind, they pop up when I least expect. I'm not talking about the warm fuzzies I get when remembering favorites like Phantasy Star on the Sega Master System, Shadow of the Colossus or Gravity Rush. Rather, these are straight-up ambushes from the chemicals in my brain, sneak attacks that I can't predict.
Back to that Alan Wake dream. I was on the run, inside my own clumsy body after looking back at the shadow-engulfed people that were chasing me—I can remember in horrifying detail the way that a slimy darkness snaked up their legs and over their bodies. I remember feeling utterly fucking helpless. And somewhere in the churn of my thoughts, I also remember some more conscious part of my brain thinking: "Didn't I beat this game already? And the other one after it? Why am I in here?!"
The feeling of being in a gameworld—without the power to control an outcome—can be a terrifying one.
Worst was how it ended. The Dark Presence—an evil force that possesses people in the Alan Wake titles—crawling up my feet, locking first my ankles, then my knees into place. I couldn't "see" what happened next but I could "feel" it. I lost the battle against the Dark Presence. That never happens in video games, which is probably why I woke up so agitated.
This dream made me wonder about how and why certain games worm their way into my head. It makes sense that Alan Wake would stay lodged in the recesses of my brain, since so much of Remedy's game concerns what happens below conscious thought. But Bastion was more of a surprise. The first few times I fell off the world in Supergiant's acclaimed action RPG, it reminded me of the acute physical sensation of when I'd fall in my dreams: a sense of increasing momentum paradoxically paired with full-body paralysis. But the Bastion-based dream was worse than just falling. This nightmare was filled with Lunkheads, the frog-like creatures that were my most hated enemy from the game. I suspect the real reason Bastion showed up is because the game's final choice is the kind of moment where you have to think about who you want to be in both real and fictional worlds. But dreams are never that clear cut, are they? I didn't have to figure out what I'd do after a cataclysmic tragedy in my Bastion dream; I was only left haunted by giant, disgustingly real versions of some of its antagonists. Lucky me, I guess?
What's more surprising are the games that haven't lingered on the edges of my unconscious brain. I loved Papo & Yo and fully expected to have daydreams or sleeping visitations from the PS3 game. But Monster and Quico haven't shown up after I fall asleep at all. Journey's another game, impressionistic as it is, that I figured would be in my dreams. But I haven't had any kind of adventures in the Wanderers' robe since I finished thatgamecompany's masterpiece. Likewise for Silent Hill 3, a game I swore would stay with me forever after scaring the crap out of me years ago, but it never ever showed up in my most meandering thoughts or dreams.
It's tough to figure out any sort of rhyme or reason as to why some games make appearances in my subconscious and others don't. The amount of time spent playing a game doesn't seem to factor into it. Titles that I've spent hours and hours with, like the Mass Effect series, never come to bed with me. The muscle memory that's a physical part of playing games probably isn't any sort of conduit to the part of my brain that brews up dreams. But the feeling of being in a gameworld—recreated in your mind with all its terror, beauty and familiar cues, yet without a button to press or the power to control an outcome—can be a terrifying one. As much as I love games, I'm glad it doesn't happen more often.
One of the neat things about Dota 2 is that you can download "Announcer Packs" that change the voice of the in-game announcer to any of a number of other characters.
This one may take the cake—Supergiant games has contributed a Bastion Announcer Pack to the game. I haven't used it, but it sounds like for $9.99, you can now have your Dota 2 game announced by Bastion's narrator Rucks. Which is amazing.
Bastion Announcer Pack [Dota 2 Store]
Nov 28, 2012
Maybe I'm just a sucker for pretty things, but Minecraft re-creations never cease to amaze me.
Today's impressive showing is the eponymous bastion of Bastion, created by Redditor cereal_bawks. Allow your eyes to enjoy: