Last Stop Reviews
Variable State follows up the wordless weirdness of Virginia with a far more talkative, and more grounded, supernatural drama with Last Stop. The focus on its three protagonists' everyday problems over the underlying odd phenomena helps to make each tale more engaging, and in turn, makes the stranger things that occur feel more captivatingly mysterious in their initially limited use. It's a little light in terms of traditional player control, but Last Stop tells a hell of a good story that you still very much feel like you're in the director's chair for.
Despite its scope, Last Stop is a wholly captivating tale. Its grounded and fantastical halves work in harmony to create a narrative that has enough humanity to draw players in while also having a supernatural mystery at its center to keep players on the hook. It may not be the most interactive game in its genre, but it’s certainly one of the most charming, intriguing, and British.
Overall Last Stop is a well crafted game by very talented independent developers which will keep players engaged for a couple of hours. A polished and well built experience. Sadly, the journey is definitely more interesting than the destination with this one.
Last Stop tells a wonderful story that is well worth your time. There’s just so little that feels like a video game in it. Most of what is here feels like it’s included because someone was afraid players had too little to do. At its best Last Stop feels more like watching a solid season of TV. That’s not inherently a bad thing. A few sequences, however, show how embracing the gaming format is able to enhance it, and definitely left me wanting more. As long as you go in with the right expectations, though, I think you’ll find a lot to like.
Last Stop is a fantastic story-driven adventure that ties together elements of the supernatural with real-life situations in an impactful manner. I was totally hooked into each character’s tale, and whilst some chapters hit a little harder than others, I simply HAD to see how everything would unfold by the end. Add to that some brilliant writing and a wonderful soundtrack and it all comes together to make for a very memorable experience. There are some missteps along the way, with some iffy character models and animations as well as a few missing pieces in the story, but they don’t stop Last Stop from offering a gripping adventure. I was already a fan of Variable State following their work on Virginia, but Last Stop feels like a real step up for the team.
Last Stop’s anthology-based approach to storytelling is great and helps to keep you engaged throughout. Even though your choices don’t really impact the story, it’s a lovely journey that touches on some interesting themes. Unfortunately, the conclusion is disappointing as it delves a little too far into the realm of science fiction. Regardless of this, the grounded characters and interesting cast are worth meeting.
Last Stop is all about the story, making its three storylines the centrepiece of the experience. Characters introduced by them quickly become staples as their personalities and unfortunate predicaments take hold, all the while the overall plot takes shape and builds to a crescendo. It's disappointing that the vast majority of your decisions have little to no impact, but the ride Last Stop takes you on is worthwhile regardless.
Though it may alienate some players due to its lack of gameplay, Last Stop has an action-packed narrative that doesn’t get stale. It beautifully juxtaposes the mundane day-to-day life of three characters against a bizarre science-fiction story. The fantastic voice talent brings a level of charisma and life that unfortunately isn’t matched by the rather stiff in-game animations, although that doesn’t stop the game from being a fun tube ride through an alien-infested London where weird stuff happens to pretty ordinary people.
With three heartfelt stories about the meaning of the relationships framed in A Twilight Zone atmosphere, Last Stop is an ambitious interactive comedy-drama which succeeds to deliver its message, even if sometimes at the expense of gameplay experience.
Review in Italian | Read full review
Last Stop's changes in tone and genre can be jolting in spots, but the characters at the center of such stories manage to keep things grounded for a delightful experience.
While decisions may not have always been as weighty as I would've liked and the marionette movements were often distracting, Last Stop, for the most part, succeeded where it needed to. It provided three distinct stories that were surprisingly deep considering it only took about six hours to tell them all and allowed players to feel like they were in control even if that might not have always been the case. I never felt like my time was wasted in Last Stop, but if the game ever gets a follow-up, it'll have to be more polished with some meaningful changes to warrant a return to its stories.
Last Stop is a really fun, engaging, and well-written adventure game that struggles a bit at the end but is elevated by its various characters, great voice acting, good music, and beautiful yet striking minimalist art style.
Last Stop may succeed when it comes to delivering a (mostly) engrossing set of stories, but it suffers from a notable lack of substance when it comes to gameplay, with several moments of interactivity feeling like they were included solely only to draw things out.
Eventually, each story hurriedly resolves itself, foregoing tidy lessons or ironic endings but still lacking that crucial, elusive sense of lived-in authenticity. For as much effort has clearly gone into voicing and animating these characters within their 3D environments, we never spend enough time to seem like we really know them; quirks of the game’s strict linearity ensure we remain at a distance, observing relationships that are otherwise too thinly sketched to sustain the game’s emotional ambitions. Last Stop eventually arrives at an all-too-familiar game-design destination, hamstrung by its attempts at verisimilitude.
When it comes down to it, Last Stop is an entertaining journey that just goes completely off the rails in its final half, failing to execute on the interesting ideas it comes up with at the start. I know that endings shouldn’t take away from the ride, but when you’re playing a title that is almost completely narrative and character-driven, I just couldn’t help but feel a letdown when credits rolled.
Overall, Last Stop is something of a mixed bag. At its best it's an enjoyable and immersive narrative adventure game, and Paper Dolls is definitely a good enough story strand to have carried the game on its own had it been expanded. However, the different quality of its three stories, and the awkward narrative shift in its final chapter, does mean that Last Stop feels a little like a missed opportunity when all is said and done, and a good game that could've been excellent with just a bit more content and some tighter scripts.
Ultimately, Last Stop presents itself as a pleasant experience, able to offer interesting things to consider on the reasons that can push a human being to give a turn to his existence. Despite an extremely pleasant rhythm and many twists and turns, the narrative of Variable State, however, fails to really leave its mark on the heart of the player who, thanks to the manifestation of real alternative tracks only at the end of the game, ends up not feeling too much empathy with John's actions, Meena and Donna.
Review in Italian | Read full review
It’s a structure that ensures different perspectives and voices carousel in and out with pleasing regularity, but also in accordance with your mood. It works to intertwine three stories that are differently enjoyable — Meena’s is the most interesting character study, Donna has the most captivating mystery, John is primarily the comic relief — playing them off each other to make them that much more gripping than they would be alone. Variable State may still not have found the perfect interactive formula for its cinematic talents, but until it does “Last Stop” remains a moderate success.
Last Stop tells three interesting stories, but lacks enough meaningful choices or consequences to create investment in its drama.
Neither lengthy nor particularly interactive, Last Stop succeeds on the strengths of its writing, narrative, and characters.