Rain, Pain And A Soul Train: Transmigration

By Adam Smith on June 30th, 2014 at 4:00 pm.

News about games reaches me in many forms. Sometimes it’s a personal email from a developer, a conversation with a friend or another website’s reporting, but more often it’s a press release. They’re often coldly efficient, those press releases, listing a stack of genres, throwing buzzwords at the wall and hoping that at least a couple will stick. Not always, but often.

This afternoon I discovered that the best way to receive news about games is in the form of a few words twittered into the world by former journo-critic turned developer Tom ‘Gunpoint‘ Francis. “Look at fucking Transmigration. What the fuck is this delightful shit.” What the fuck indeed.

Feast your eyes on this.

It’s certainly delightful, Tom’s right about that. As for what it actually is, the official website is more interested in telling us what it isn’t. Here’s what Transmigration doesn’t involve:

- no 3d environments
– no upgradable weapons
– no revolutionary combat AI
– no combat
– no destructible terrain
– no crouching
– no running

And here’s what it does involve:

- lots of rain
– engaging, story-driven experience

A game about my life, eh? Well, it’s close. This is the story of Joseph, a miserable grump of a man who works for a company. “Yes, a company”, the site helpfully explains. That gives me a shiver in the old Kafkas, that does.

To tell you the truth, we suspect that he might not even remember what the company does anymore. But he’s there every morning, queueing to clock in. Oh, and it seems he’s been having trouble with sleeping lately. In fact there are nights when he can’t sleep at all. There are also days when he considers visiting that Transmigration Clinic they’ve opened nearby…

There’s a handy flyer about Transmigration just here. Eternal Trial Of The Metamorphing Mind perhaps? I could go for that. But part of the joy of a discovery like Transmigration is both the sweary method of discovery and the pleasure of having no answers. Bring on Joseph and his company. Bring on Transmigration Clinics and gorgeous tormented rainscapes.

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21 Comments »

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  1. GameCat says:

    At least, the game with disabled playable protagonist. I can’t really think about any other.

    PS. Twine fiction doesn’t count.

  2. DelrueOfDetroit says:

    Euthanasia into a virtual world gone wrong perhaps.

  3. Ross Angus says:

    YES.

    From the video, the controls seem to allow the player to either scratch their head endlessly, or perhaps shake their fist at the sky. I’m fine with this.

  4. Orija says:

    Is “engaging, story-driven experience” the new way of saying that it’s an artsy non-game with nothing to do like Gone Home?

    • Bull0 says:

      Is that a way of making an artsy non-comment with nothing to add like “meh”?

      • Orija says:

        Is that a way of making an artsy non-answer with nothing to add like “donno”?

    • DrManhatten says:

      Yep definitely looks like it. One of these look at me I am so arty I have no other ideas but hey I am art and therefore that’s fine. No sorry! Not buying that. If I want to see real Art I go to a gallery.

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        Hidden_7 says:

        And if I want to play with real mechanics I go play Chess in the park, feh!

        Everything can only be one thing.

      • David Shute says:

        There’s a lot of art that doesn’t get shown in galleries. You’re missing out.

  5. Wedge says:

    It does look lovely but… the plans to release “Act I” in 2015 is the part where I’m least enthused.

  6. Ahtaps says:

    “- lots of rain
    – engaging, story-driven experience”

    *Pulls back the mask* “Old Man David Cage!”
    “And I’d have gotten away with it if it weren’t for you meddling kids and your dumb dog.”

  7. unit 3000-21 says:

    The guy in this screenshot looks a bit like Dzierżyński to me.

  8. Shadowcat says:

    So the game involves:

    – 3d environments
    – upgradable weapons
    – revolutionary combat AI
    – combat
    – destructible terrain
    – crouching
    – running
    – lots of rain
    – engaging, story-driven experience

  9. Alien426 says:

    As far as rainy, pixely games go, I’ll always be very fond of Zanrai’s “Pixel Art Style And Water Effects Test”