Supergiant slam dunk: Pyre released

Pyre [official site], the new party-based basketballing RPG from Bastion and Transistor developers Supergiant Games, is now out. Our boy Brendy set himself ablaze in his fervor to finish it and tell us all Wot He Thinks, which was evidently foolish. We’ll find out his assessment after he’s released from the burn ward so, for now, here’s a reminder that Pyre is now out.

So there you are, down in purgatory with your mates, trying to win your freedom by playing magical foot-o-rugg-a-basketball. Pyre’s battles are on the sportsfield, in real-time 3v3 slamming and jamming where teams are trying to extinguish the other’s roaring pyre by pelting it with balls of water. You build teams from your party and naturally you have wizard powers to help with your sporting.

Also, it’s a story! As you travel the world, you’ll meet people, get to know folks, and probably gab a whole lot about how life is hell but at least there’s sport.

On top of the campaign, Pyre does have a two-player competitive local multiplayer mode to simply slam, jam, ram, bam, and flam with a pal.

Pyre launched last night for Windows and Linux. It costs £14.99/19,99€/$19.99 on Steam.

27 Comments

  1. Zorgulon says:

    This reminds me – I really need to play Transistor one of these days. I adored Bastion, and must have picked their second game up shortly after release, but never got around to actually playing it. Here’s hoping this is as good – it sounds ike it might be from poor Brendan’s plight.

    • Zekiel says:

      I would temper your enthusiasm for Transistor. It is *definitely* worth playing, but I don’t think it’s as good as Bastion. Its combat is quite an odd mix of tactical and real-time, and its story is very odd – it doesn’t do what you expect, and I don’t mean that in a “I never saw that twist coming!” kind of way.

      But it is beautiful and evocative and quite unique. And obviously YMMV.

      • Premium User Badge

        basilisk says:

        Plus it gives of a strong vibe of being unfinished. The ending is very rushed and feels off, somehow. Like there’s something missing there.

        It’s an interesting game, though.

        • Bluestormzion says:

          I wouldn’t say that the game feels unfinished… I think that the way the ending, and everything happening around the ending, makes you feel is a deliberate choice. I don’t want to talk about what happened in the ending, and the events around the ending, but to me it was a natural progression of what happened in the game.

          • AngoraFish says:

            Transistor has a fantastic setup and introduces a whole bunch of fascinating back story while hinting at numerous intriguing characters and thereafter goes… literally nowhere.

            The ending is all kinds of rushed given the slow build of the first three quarters of the game.

            Overall, Transistor is more than worth the effort, and the music as always is fantastic, but it most definitely does feel unfinished.

      • PiiSmith says:

        I agree. Transistor did not draw me in like Bastion did. The combat felt less fluid and the story was also not as compelling to me.

    • davethejuggler says:

      I’ve bounced off transistor three times. I love the aesthetics, but the gameplay left me cold. Still need to try and get through it!

      Seems like Pyre has been incredibly well received so far, so excited to try it out.

    • RuySan says:

      It’s beautiful and very atmospheric, but i found it only a bit fun.

    • Beefenstein says:

      Obligatory dissenting view: I found Bastion a little repetitive and therefore unfulfilling in terms of gameplay with the actions of flat characters narrated in a way which did nothing but annoy me.

      Transistor seemed nice but equally the story had no sign of going anywhere and the gameplay just wasn’t very fun.

      I sadly expect this game to receive rave reviews, me to get it in three years for practically nothing in a bundle, and again find out that I just don’t like it.

      • digital_sneeze says:

        They’re beautiful games, but my God they’re dull. Pretty wrapping around superficial gameplay, and in Transistor’s case unfinished feeling (which was a blessing really as I had to force myself to finish it).

        Pyre supposedly acts more like a visual novel with some gameplay attached. That might actually work to their strengths to be honest, if they can deliver a memorable narrative along with the obviously immense art then I think I could actually take something away from it, instead of feelings of confusion of their positive reception, and bit of loathing that I wasted my time with it.

        Man, I’ve wanted to vent about Bastion and Transistor for ages. Now I just need a vehicle to moan about Witcher 3.

        • Premium User Badge

          MajorLag says:

          “Pretty wrapping around superficial gameplay”

          Yeah, that was my assessment of Bastion as well. I really felt bored playing it and just stopped after… I don’t know, an hour? It is really annoying that so many well-received games are like this.

          • Dewal says:

            Maybe it’s their fault that the game isn’t enrapting right at the start (gameplay wise), but the “game-feel” of the game is very weapon dependent in the case of Bastion, and in one hour it doesn’t shock me that you didn’t get to unlock a weapon that could have more suited your style. I know that there were some weapons I couldn’t play with (like the weak&fast daggers) and if they were forced on me for the first hour, I may have never got into the game.

          • digital_sneeze says:

            Yeah it’s weird, but I also end up seeming to love lots of games that have amazing art and little gameplay. Firewatch, Inside and the Kentucky Route Zero games spring to mind. Anyone could argue they’re just pretty showpieces but somehow they work for me. Perhaps because they nail down exactly what they intended to do, instead of pushing the illusion of gameplay depth. Or something.

    • Premium User Badge

      calcifer says:

      Let me be the dissenting voice here. I really liked Bastion, but I absolutely loved Transistor, so much that I’ve finished it 3 times since release.

      Pyre seems not nearly as good as the previous games (so far; I’ve only played about 2 hours), but if you liked Bastion, you should probably give it a shot as well.

      • benexclaimed says:

        Agree completely. Transistor is one of my favorite games of the last few years, really. One of the few I’ve NG+ed.

      • Hammurabi says:

        Yes! Bastion was good – atmospheric, pretty, played well, but I got a little weary of it, and the gameplay didn’t evolve enough during the course of the game to get me to play already to the end.

        I loved Transistor, though. It is also one of my favorite games of the last few years.

    • Rainshine says:

      I found Transistor much more fun than Bastion. Excellent sound for both of them, but the combat in Transistor was 100x better than Bastion — there’s something resembling turn-based mode.

  2. Talahar says:

    As far as I’m concerned it’s a 3 out of 3 Supergiant Games for me. Also, a 3 out of 3 game soundtracks from Supergiant Games.

  3. Moraven says:

    Buy the soundtrack now. Get the game later when I have time to play. Another great OST from Darren Korb and crew.

  4. Cuitarded says:

    Personally, I completely loved Bastion and Transistor. I also think SG does an excellent job of crafting a unique story and compelling gameplay.

    However I completely understand if their type of game is not for everyone. The games are unique to the point of being slightly niche, and I think their art / production style is a bit of acquired taste.

  5. Durgendorf says:

    Very odd to see so many slam Transistor here, when the last Supergiant post was a Transistor lovefest.

    I think a lot of people’s disappointment stemmed from expecting another grand slam voice performance from Logan Cunningham and getting something more understated. Which pretty aptly sums up the entire game.

    • Beefenstein says:

      Not in my case. I didn’t like the narration in Bastion.

  6. Just Endless says:

    Everyone here is mentioning Bastion and Transistor, which is what you’d expect people to do I guess, but this is a very different sort of game; contrary to the Visual Novel claims floating around the internet right now, it’s MUCH MORE GAMEPLAY FOCUSED than either of those games. The game I keep thinking of while playing it (I’ve got 12 hours logged) is Super Smash Bros, in that it’s a game that balances tactics with in-the-moment skill, it’s centered around encounters/matches that you plan ahead for (who would counter this situation best, etc), and that it’s utterly intense to play (game gets real, REAL hard if you take it up on some of its challenges).

    I think it’s gameplay-wise one of the tightest games I’ve played in years, and DID NOT PLAN to play it 6 hours a day today and yesterday.

  7. ElElegante says:

    I got this yesterday and was all ‘Ooooh!’ and ‘Aaaah!’ over the visuals and the characters and the dialogue and the soundtrack – oh gods, the soundtrack! – until I got to the first battle. I was expecting something vaguely resembling RPG mechanics, but instead I got a really weird real-time metaphysical basketball MOBA where only one person moves at a time and I was all ‘What is this and why is this not fun!’. Then I refunded the game and was sad for a bit.

    • Beefenstein says:

      I find I rarely like games too. I buy them more than I play them.

      I guess games, in the end, really aren’t that important.