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Train Station Renovation review for Xbox One, Switch, PC


Platform: Xbox One
Also on: PC, Switch
Publisher: Ultimate Games
Developer: Live Motion Games
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No
ESRB: E

The last simulator I played from Ultimate Games was Demolish & Build 2018. It was an unmitigated disaster, right down to the fact that the game was actually released on the Switch in 2020 (if you want to get an idea of the fine eye for detail that went into that game). With that in mind, I didn’t go into Train Station Renovation expecting a whole lot.

You can imagine my surprise when I discovered that I actually liked it.

I mean, I wouldn’t say it’s a GOTY contender or anything. It’s an incredibly niche, kinda janky game that can be somewhat frustrating as you try to use your controller to place items just so, and that gets very repetitive as you painstakingly pick up individual items of trash. There’s also unintentional hilarity as the game gives you hands, which float right at the bottom of your vision throughout the game.

But even with those flaws, there’s something delightfully zen about the whole enterprise. On multiple occasions, I’d sit down to play Train Station Renovation, then look up at the time and discover I’d sunk a few hours into picking up garbage, wiping away graffiti, painting walls, and placing benches. While there’s some element of creativity to it, too — you get to pick what types of toilets and clocks you want, and you can choose from a wide range of styles! — the real joy of the game comes from losing yourself in repetition.

Again, Train Station Renovation is very, very niche. To fully enjoy it, you’ll have to want to do the same actions hundreds — if not thousands — of times, and you’ll have to do so keeping in mind these are things that, in real life, would be mind-numbingly boring. But as long as you approach it with that caveat, you may discover that this is a pleasant way to pass the time.

Ultimate Games provided us with a Train Station Renovation Xbox One code for review purposes.

Grade: B-