By Ronald Gordon
Aliens. For years, we humans have studied the concept. But we never really understood the important question. Are aliens hostile?
The Station is a first-person, sci-fi, narrative-oriented game about an unnamed, disembodied protagonist who is sent to a space station called the Axiom. You’re sent there because the crew aboard the station has grown suspiciously quiet and you, as a Recon Specialist, are sent abroad to investigate the problem. While aboard the station, you find clues as to what happened to the three-person crew and what knowledge their research has brought them.
And, “serious spoiler alert,” the crew may have found the answer to the question I posed earlier, and the answer is definitely ‘yes.’ The aliens that the crew ran into are far more violent than expected. Soon enough, there isn’t a crew to save. Your last option is to escape and watch the Axiom self destruct, destroying whatever alien creature it held within.
I honestly loved this game because not only is it beautifully animated but the story is told well — you even get to learn about the interpersonal struggles of the crew. Things like a long term relationship being thrown out the window, a heavy drinking problem and debt issues are what make up the character development of the characters you never get to see alive. All of that is told through various voice recordings with some really stirring voice acting, and some texts and emails you can read (if you’re that type of person, which I am).
The camera was smooth and so was the movement. There wasn’t any music except for the occasional sounds that play in some of the rooms that you enter which made the atmosphere all the more eerie. You can pick up items and investigate them to see if they have hidden messages or ways to unlock puzzles. As I moved, I found I wanted to go faster than walking or sprinting, though. Other than that the game is very fun as you get to solve line puzzles and open doors to rooms that hold precious story elements and explore the Axiom for all it’s worth.
I also love space and the concept of aliens and the way The Station represents them is suspenseful. It’s not everyday you get to play a game like this, so story heavy and dramatic I mean. It’s what makes The Station enjoyable. If you want to pass the time with a twisting tale, then I’d highly suggest The Station for all sci-fi lovers out there.
Ronald Gordon is one of our mot recent New York Videogame Critics Circle interns from a partnership with the DreamYard Prep School in the Bronx.