Ashwalkers is an inventive survival sim that puts the story centre stage. Whilst managing resources and the survivor's physical and mental health is important, the choices you have to make are where it's at its most inventive.
Ashwalkers tells an open-ended story the right way, mixing equal parts agency and powerlessness, hope and despair. From its bleak, monochromatic world to one of our own that can be just as unkind to the downtrodden, Ashwalkers leaves a memorable message to take away from this ambitious game.
Ashwalkers is an interesting and sometimes dark story. I was always curious whether I was making the right choices and getting my team closer to their goal, or if I was sending them to their deaths. Seeing how even the smallest of choices can affect the playthrough was rewarding, and the mystery of the Dome of Domes is worth a trek through the wastes for any fan of survival management and choice-based games.
While Ashwalkers has an interesting art style and atmosphere, it does little to capitalize on its survival mechanics, choice based narrative, and is far too easy for what it wants to be. While Ashwalkers may be worth a single playthrough, there’s not much to motivate repeat visits to this wasteland.
The core game of Ashwalkers is a great, atmospheric experience that takes classics like The Oregon Trail and transports them to a vividly realised post-apocalyptic setting. Characters are nicely defined, resource management is clearly presented, and I genuinely wanted to find out more about the world and its inhabitants. However, the actual process of playing the game is just too slow and becomes boring after the first couple of runs. There is a good survival and choice-filled game here, but you have to walk a long long way to get to it.
Ashwalkers really just isn’t an interesting experience. It takes the post-apocalypse and manages to make it soporific. I can’t really recommend it unless you’re looking for a unique way to cure your insomnia.
SummaryFrom the co-founder of Dontnod (Life is Strange) Hervé Bonin's new studio Nameless XIII. Face the dark corners of your humanity and find out what lurks in the shadows. Set 200 years after the first geological disasters the earth is a post-apocalyptic wasteland. Survive the weather, the ash storm, the grey blizzard and the acid rain.