The Tube is out there.
As a storyteller, gaming has several personalities. Sometimes we go story-game-story-game with cutscene ‘movies’, or we pick through branching prose with interspersed decisions, or we read out comic book narratives interrupted by puzzle breaks. Sometimes the action is the story, like Breath of the Wild’s millions of private adventures emerging from its systems – but that was paid for with a loose narrative that divided opinion. So you can go wide-open and emergent but lose authorship, or tell a tight story but weaken the interaction that makes games games. Last Stop is a story game that does the latter; in this supernatural tale of the London Underground, you’re railroaded.
After a short retro-sci-fi prologue, we see three passengers sitting along a bench seat on the Tube. Each has a story to play, their paths and fates intersecting in an urban fantasy adventure. London is well realised – not in detailed models of famous landmarks but in quiet observations of the day-to-day. You’ll skip your schoolwork and loiter on the estate, have an affair behind your husband’s back and fall short as an overworked dad with a dud boss. The scenarios feel real and get across something of London’s spirit. These are great little vignettes of the mundane in front of which the fantastical plot points can shine. Intriguing, funny, touching: good stories, well told.
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