The Final Station is a game created by two indie developers, Oleg Sergeev and Andrey Rumak under the studio name of Do My Best Games. Published by Tiny Build this stunningly crafted experience encapsulates everything that is to be expected from an unforgiving survival game and captures beautifully the tension, uncertainty and underlying horror of a mysterious apocalyptic world.
You are a train driver who begins their day like any work day. However, part way into your journey an unexplained calamity befalls the world. Your plans are changed by the powers that be and you are tasked with a new course of action. You must transport a military cargo to it’s destination and as a secondary objective you must search the stations you stop at for survivors and attempt to bring them to safety. After the calamity has occurred the stations are plagued by hordes of strange humanoid creatures that you must defeat using a small variety of mechanics, in order to find the food, supplies and survivors that lay within each station.
To fight off the shadowy creatures that attack you at each stop you have a gun, which you have to find ammo for, a melee attack and environmental objects. Reacting quickly to throw chairs and boxes effectively takes out individual enemies and saves a little of your precious ammo. Along the journey you must also collect food and medical supplies to keep your passengers alive. If you die you are put back to the most recent check point or you may restart the level at any time if you wish to do things better or more efficiently. This system allows for the stress levels to remain at generally manageable levels and allows you to more easily work out the best way to tackle certain rooms and situations. The Final Station is not an easy game by any means, but the way the game is put together means that you are able to work through it’s more difficult elements fairly effectively. Often resets are required to ensure that you have enough ammo to get you to the end of a level as generally it is difficult to get through a level without killing every enemy and using only bullets to do this will lead to you ending up in situations you cannot get out of.
Graphically, The Final Station is a beautiful example of good pixel art. The characters are all distinctive despite being visually simple. Coupled with the perfect animation of the characters, enemies and objects in the world the game possesses a great depth and atmosphere as a result of all it’s visual elements. The colour palette is completely perfect for the tone of the game and enhances the dark and mysterious setting.
The music is beautiful and extremely haunting, which adds to the overall well crafted feel of the game. Every aspect of The Final Station feels lovingly created and the music is certainly no exception. Continuing to add to the apocalyptic but not entirely hopeless atmosphere the music disappears and re-appears at the right moments and possesses a tone that very much enhances the tension and mystery.
Everything about this excellent game is exquisite and offers you an unforgiving but gloriously beautiful trip through a world full of uncertainty and potential horror. You have no idea what has happened to the world, you have no idea what you will find at your destination and you have no idea what will happen to you on the way there. A true gem in every respect and a very enjoyable experience.