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Transistor dev talks impact of the PS4's added power on indie games

Transistor  Screenshot - Transistor on PS4

You may recall during the PlayStation E3 press briefing, a moment in which eight independent developers took the stage to show off their PS4 titles. I'd imagine it was an inspiring moment for any indie developer hopeful to one day share the spotlight of the E3 stage with AAA blockbusters. For Sony, it was just another chance to show they are committed to indie developers with their new console.

While all eight indie games look attractive in their own right, it's not as easy to see how these developers are making full use of the PS4's added horsepower. It's easy to just look at an indie game and write it off as not being powerful. Whether it's the (relatively speaking) simpler graphics, or less in-your-face blockbuster game mechanics, you just don't get the same sense of "how does this added power make a difference?"

"You’d be surprised," said Greg Kasavin, Creative Director at Supergiant Games, who showed off Transistor during Sony's E3 event. Transistor is debuting on the PS4 when development concludes in 2014. 

"The extra power of the PS4 is actually super-useful for us, especially the added memory capacity," he explained. "This game is much more animation-intensive than Bastion already. The fidelity of the animation – I’m not sure we could achieve that on the current gen without significantly scaling it back.

"It really helps not having to spend all our time squeezing the game into a much smaller memory footprint. That allows our content creators on the art side and audio side to be more expressive."

While Kasavin admits the game isn't making "full use of the system's horsepower," he does think that "the spirit of the PS4 is that it has all sorts of games on it, large and small. That spirit was showcased at the E3 press briefing, and that's why we're here."

"I don’t know that a game like this would have made sense at the PS3 launch, but times have changed. Players now have a broader appreciation for these types of experiences. Again, we’re just thankful that our game got that recognition and could be part of this line-up," Kasavin concluded.

[PS Blog]

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Matt Liebl You can follow Senior News Editor Matt Liebl on Twitter @Matt_GZ. He likes games, sports, musicals, and his adorable dog, Wrigley. And his wife.
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