If you’ve always dreamed of becoming an SNCF network controller, drop it, Train Valley is for you! As for the rest, we still invite you to stay on this test, if only for the sake of discovery… Discovery is sort of the main attraction of this game, which manages to play this card wonderfully.
For fans of Railway Empire we have here a much less developed game, more in the arcade, but not in the presence of miniMETRO. Though it represents the perfect compromise between the two, taking on the atmosphere and concept of the Railway Empire while simplifying the experience with simple traffic controls like the miniMETRO.
So the basic concept is simple: you will need to connect all the stations together and make the trains move from one station to another according to the city (indicated by color and logo) where it should go. While paying attention to crashes, your expenses and annual taxes, to avoid the end of the game … or rather, the bankruptcy that will constantly await you throughout the game.
In addition, each level adds its own difficulties, and the diversity of biomes offers new challenges, as well as new restrictions for your development, without changing the situation drastically. In most cases, this is due to the use of tunnels and bridges between your stations. However, sometimes the task is made more difficult by the addition of special slow trains that can arrive at any time and are necessary for your progress, or even at a level where you will have to face missiles destroying your trains from time to time.
An entertaining but sometimes stressful experience when it comes to completing a ride on one of your trains with only $1,000 of cash left to keep at any time due to annual taxes. Fortunately, the game offers, for those who just want to have fun without worrying about the rest, a sandbox mode that allows you to complete missions without stress and difficulty, although this also takes away from us much of the interest in the experience.
Flaws are legion to ruin the experience
Only if the perfect game existed would it be known. Thus, Train Valley Console Edition is no exception to the rule and certainly not free from flaws. Chief among them is none other than its playability and ergonomics. Indeed, despite the visible efforts made by the development teams, the menus remain unintuitive, as does the gameplay.
In fact, it’s mostly due to the associated support, even more so than the game, however the experience has suffered a lot, even spoiled, while on PC it was enjoyable. Another notable shortcoming of the title is the lack of depth in the face of the Railway Empire we mentioned earlier.
However, if here we would have liked a more complete game with deeper controls, this is the prejudice of the developers, who preferred to offer a more sober and relaxing experience, albeit reduced.
So there are some downsides that increase the very short lifespan (takes 5 to 10 hours to overcome) without spoiling the experience too much (except perhaps for the gameplay) which remains enjoyable and sometimes requires you to use your brains wisely to to achieve success.