The Final Station, let’s a railroad to the max and get on the choo! Choo! Train, into a god-forsaken wasteland, where things have gone really, really wrong and I will probably find out why. Whether you like it or not, unless I fail to keep the passengers alive. Which is a very hard thing to achieve I must admit. The lot of them keep bleeding out on me, while I fiddle with maintaining the faulty equipment and the power level. The system has a nasty habit of redirecting power away from the air recycling system in the passenger cabin. Luckily I have yet to see my valuable cargo turn into worthless fertilizer. Despite these minor issues I eventually reach my station. As my train locks into the station, I realize something has gone seriously wrong.
The Final Station is one part of system management. One part is side-scrolling action and survival horror. While the rest is quite an intriguing story with something weird going on. Controller wise game is quite simple and very easy to understand. Even if there is no tutorial that I could find, I found it intuitive. Whenever a system on the train requires input an exclamation-marks pops up. The same holds true for the passengers that will have a dialogue with each other when the player is within earshot. That being said. Text in general could use a bigger font and a way to read it after things have been said.
All the passengers that survive will provide various bonuses, which can be seen when next to them on the train. While these poor fellows have a bad habit of bleeding out a bit too fast, it’s funny how none really cares.
It can be a bit hard to follow the dialogue when juggling food, dying people, and technical problems, maybe have at least dialogue stop when fiddling with mechanics
The side-scrolling survival horror part in The Final Station occurs when the train stops and the player embark. Each of these stages involves investigating the area, interacting with people, and scrounging for supplies, while searching for the code. Which is the only way to unlock the train stopper and move on to the next story. There are also a lot of enemies, where a lot of punching and creative use of furniture is needed to survive. Since bullets, first aid kits, and supplies like food are finite supplies. Every now and then stores can be found as well, where hard-earned riches can be spent. It’s quite satisfying to punt a toilet through an annoying ankle-biting monster.
This brings me to a small issue, while there are checkpoints, they are usually poorly placed. They pay very little attention to what monsters are next to the player. Which can lead to me re-spawn surrounded by the enemies I ran past. While triggering a checkpoint.
Graphically The Final Station is full of small touches, details that add to the atmosphere. But if sprites are not your thing, then you have been warned. That being said, the background feels a bit out of place at times. While the graphics are nice and moody, the ambiance drives the apocalyptic feel of it all even further, sprinkled with music cues here and there.No to mention how few sound effects are used overall.
That being said, while I greatly enjoy the game, it can be a bit frustrating here and there due to enemies and the environment. To get the full story and all the in-game dialogue, resources have to be managed and all the passengers have to be saved. This is where some of the re-playability comes from along with Steam achievements. If there are any branching paths I just don’t know yet. But it would be a waste not to, but apparently, there will be differences in the dialogue and NPC interactions, however, I had some issues working out that menu, it was not intuitive at all and poorly highlighted.
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