Hands-on with award-winning Japanese indie puzzle game Tranth
C. Custer | On September 20, 2013 at 10:38 am
At its core, Tranth is a puzzle game that involves rolling blocks to fuse them with other blocks until all the blocks in a given level are linked together.
This article is part of our coverage of TGS 2013.
I came upon Tranth at TGS rather randomly; it was the one game among the spread of ten 2013 amateur game design award winners that no one was playing at the time. I don’t speak Japanese, but the game was simple enough that I was able to figure out how to play it almost immediately. And I have to say that I had a lot of fun, although I can’t really explain why.
At its core, Tranth is a puzzle game that involves rolling blocks to fuse them with other blocks until all the blocks in a given level are linked together. I’m fully aware that makes no sense, so just watch this video of Tranth in action; you’ll get it almost immediately.
What you can’t tell from the video, though, is that the controls feel really great. There’s something oddly satisfying about the moment each block locks into place, and something very natural about the way they flip about. It’s a little reminiscent of another Japanese indie game, actually: Katamari Damacy, at least in terms of how it feels.
I didn’t play the game for long, but it was cool enough that I hope something more comes of it. Even if there’s never an English version, I’ll be happy to download the Japanese one and obliviously roll my blocks around all day with no greater idea of what it all means. It’s not hard to see why Tranth won an award, and while there’s no way I’m aware of for you to play it right now, it’s definitely one to keep an eye out for in case a version ever finds its way out into the public.