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Train Conductor Review: The Best Line-Drawing Game Yet

Now we all know about Firemint’s Flight Control, the game that revolutionized and started the line-drawing era on the App Store; Train Conductor most likely being influenced by the success of Flight Control.  And the developers being from Aussie, they had to have some type of communication as Train Conductor seems to revolutionize the line-drawing genre even more.  And it may just be me, but are Aussies somewhat genius when it comes to line-drawing?

Train Conductor takes place in none other than Australia, with four locations available to unlock.  It also comes with Plus+ integration, meaning online leaderboards, achievements, and friends.  The goal of the game is to match the train with the number on the railway, and of course, you can’t crash any of the trains.  There is both a day and night mode; each with its own twists to it and its own levels.  It’s a little bit on the short side, but overall, a blast to play.

Likes

Polish: No, I’m not referring to the people of Poland, but more on the design of the game. And I hate to be cliche using the phrase “This game is extremely polished”, but it seems all the more necessary when referring to the menu designs and overall look of the game.  It’s almost as good looking as Flight Control, if not better, and the design was a major point in this hidden line-drawing game.

Twist: Line-drawing games have gone pretty far, almost as far as leading people to the toilet.  But many developers have tried, and none have ever come up with the idea of a more “sorting category” type of thinking as seen in Train Conductor.  I’m not sure if I explained thoroughly enough, but the point of the game is to match the #1 train with the #1 railway track, and so on and so forth.  There are ghosts and skeleton trains in the night mode, and the overall game almost felt like a totally new genre.  Of course, it still has some homage to the line-drawing concept, and that being the reason of my categorization.

Fun: I can’t really place a finger on it, but the game is just plain fun.  I didn’t have many moments of, “Ughh, this game is killing me”, more like “I need more achievements.”  Of course, being an achievement whore, the game meant more replay value than a normal, sane iPhone gamer.  Either way, I had a lot of fun with the game as all casual games should be.

Dislikes

Plus+ Glitches: When the game would be over, the worldwide leaderboard placed me at #1 or #328 randomly, but when I go to check, I’m around #27 or so.  Not that it’s a huge deal, but something to fix in the upcoming update.  Also, the scores on the leaderboards were quite delayed, putting a score that I scored maybe on my first try.  A way to update the scores on the leaderboards would be another convenient option.

Content: I beat the game in none other than 2 hours, the only replay value coming from the achievements.  Unlocking everything was quite easy, and it would be better to add some more in there.  While the night mode was a good addition to extend content, I couldn’t help but feel the game needed more.  Maybe the game was too easy, or maybe it was just short I have no true way of telling.  Either way, as a gamer, I suggest some more… stuff in there.

Train Conductor is the best offering in the App Store right now, and I believe The Voxel Agents are headed in the right direction.  While there were some flaws here and there as mentioned above, the overall game is a game you shouldn’t miss; one that I felt should be owned by everyone.  If I had to suggest a line-drawing game to anyone, it would be Train Conductor.

Train Conductor was developed by The Voxel Agents, and I played through version 1.0 on my iPhone 3GS.  The price is $1.99.



  1. Bob on Sunday 27, 2009

    I agree completely. Hidden gem!

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