The Final Station is a side scrolling platform game with a mix between old school 8-bit and 16-bit graphics. The setting for this game is a future where it has been 106 years since there was a alien visitation and society is ever vigilant and preparing for a second visitation. The main character in this adventure is a train conductor who just got off vacation and is tasked with transporting something extremely important and mysterious. The story advances through text as the conductor finds letters, notes, emails, IM conversations, and finally chatting with the people you come across in your adventure.
As you travel from station to station you catch wind that things are not going very well in the preparation for the second visitation and that it may be looming just around the corner, if its not already here. On your journey things continue to get worse as an unknown outbreak has occurred, causing normal citizens to become dark violent and mindless. On top of this serious outbreak the second visitation has arrived, and society has fallen into a complete melt down as seemingly no one knows how or if the two events are related.
Playing this on Xbox One the controls were difficult to get a handle on at first as the cross hairs used for aiming your weapon and the direction the conductor is facing are attached to your right stick. This makes switching the direction and aiming placement very challenging, but with some practice and lots of ammunition survival is still possible.
Level design was simple and straight forward utilizing the 8 bit foreground well crating lots of up and downs and small details making the world come to life, much of the world is dark thick lines or blocks unless you access the doors to let light in. The hostile and mindless enemies also reflect this darkness. The 16 bit backgrounds and environments bring the story to life adding in environmental story telling reinforcing the apocalyptic occurrences and sense of doom for the world at large.
The narrative that accompanies this environment is dark and mysterious. As the conductor you are an outsider looking in and if you want to do more than survive you can investigate and read to gain a greater understanding of the narrative. While I think this is a cool direction to take and it makes sense for the character that is being played. When you reach the ending not everything makes sense unless all the dots are connected. I’m fairly certain I explored and read everything that was available and I still had a difficult time trying to understand the ending.
Overall, I enjoyed my experience with Final Station. It was a great story despite the confusing ending, while it didn’t have many of the typical elements to a RPG, the fact that the story was experienced from only the perspective of the conductor really put me in his shoes, and this was a fantastic decision made by the game designers. The survival element to this game was executed fairly well. I was also pleasantly pleased after seeing the trailer that this was not just another Zombie game, while it has some zombie type elements in it there’s much more going on than what is presented on the surface.
The Final Station is available on Steam, PS4, and Xbox 1
If any of you have played Final Station let me know what you think, or lets discuss your favorite zombie/biological outbreak game.
Interesting Perspective for story development
Art direction was cool
Cool and simple survival game
Tough to play with a controller
Teeters on Zombie genre