The Space Station Espiel is beyond anything we’ve seen before, cloaking technology capable of rendering the station completely invisible, this technology has allowed the Espiel to sit on the outskirts of a strange alien planet known as Psy-Prime,
Upon Psy-Prime the intelligent inhabitants are trapped in an ever-strong ongoing civil war between themselves seemingly unaware of the Espiel no further away than their own satellites and space stations.
On board the Espiel was a 3 man crew, in charge of investigating and monitoring the alien race, but as their mission was coming to an end, something went wrong, the station went dark, losing it’s cloaking technology and communications array.
a sole recon agent (our unnamed protagonist) is sent to the Espiel to investigate and the game opens as you arrive at the docking doors. Stepping foot onto the station, it’s obvious things aren’t quite right, things seemed to have turned pear-shaped pretty quickly with a game left mid-progress and the crew nowhere to be seen.
Upon exploring the station, you’ll need to find the wristbands of each crew member in order to explore further, puzzles and clues left in audio recordings mixed with a little exploration and you’ll soon find your way forward, many of these puzzles revolve around finding information and then utilising that, such as missing tools that need replacing, or the specific location of a fuse, and then working out how to differentiate between working and blown fuses.
The delivery of the story and relevant clues through these audio logs make listening to every one worth while, they’re never too long winded that they feel boring or irrelevent, instead they’re filled with enough information to relay the happenings of the crew and ship. Unfortunately much of the information you need to solve the little puzzles is far too obvious and I never found myself stuck for what to do for more than a minute or two.
Graphically the Station looks pretty good for a £14.99 indie title, each section of the station is well represented and there’s not too many re-used textures, lighting is on an equal par with some impressive bloom effects which draw your attention to certain items which does assist with a couple of puzzles a little too easily.
The atmosphere feels isolated without being too quiet and the overall audio fits perfectly, with some eerie background music to keep things feeling tense, at times it feels as though The Station is trying to touch on horror, but then it resorts back to mystery and suspense which is a far better flow considering the latter stages of the game.
These last sections of the game are easily the best, there’s some discreet tying up of loose ends, and listening to and reading the various logs give you enough resolution to feel as though you know much more about the crew, but it’s the final seconds when you get the all encompassing twist, which instantly explains everything before and makes perfect sense.
Sadly these final moment don’t last long enough and come about far too quickly, I was really starting to get into The Station and enjoy learning about the crew and the goings on aboard the Espiel, but before you know it, it’s finished…
The flurry of 75g achievements where an indication of longevity, but I couldn’t help but feel The Station could have been longer, much longer and maybe it should have been. Upon completion there’s no backtracking, little reason to replay and no additional modes, it left me feeling a little cheated for my time, but equally I thoroughly enjoyed the brief time I spent on the Espiel.