by Joseph Leray
Supergiant Games' "Transistor" will feature a kind of passive, persistent-world multiplayer mode says creative director Greg Kasavin. Speaking with Rock, Paper, Shotgun, Kasavin explained that the company is "interested in ... a sense of feeling connected to other people who are playing, in a subtle way."
"You can still have your personal experience around the story, but you always know you belong in a larger [world]," he elaborated. "For example, players can sometimes see traces of other players' paths moving around. Things of that nature. What's interesting to us about this world is that it lends itself to some interesting things like that." Later in the interview, he mentioned that "the part where you don’t feel alone in the world is very important to us."
The most obvious comparison here is From Software's "Dark Souls," in which players could leave ghostly warnings in particularly dangerous areas, but Kasavin also warned against expecting deathmatch or co-op modes in "Transistor." Says Kasavin: "The combat maybe could work in multiplayer, but I don't see this game having deathmatch arenas or whatever."
The idea of a co-op mode in "Transistor" seems interesting at first blush, but Kasavin quashed that idea pretty thoroughly: "We also want the narrative and atmosphere to be important in 'Transistor,' so having two characters running around at the same time would come at a heavy cost. It may open up some interesting gameplay opportunities, but at the expense of other areas."
"It’s not in the cards for us right now."
Here's what is in the cards: "Transistor" is due no earlier than next year on as-yet-unannounced platforms and features, as evidenced by this fifteen-minute intro, a gorgeous sci-fi dystopia and grid-based tactical combat.
It's probably too early to make any definitively gushy pronouncements about "Transistor," but come on: Supergiant's resistance to feature-bloat falls on receptive ears, and "Bastion" is as glittering a track record as any.