What Comes After: Light Depression, The Video Game

What Comes After is a short, atmospheric Switch game that follows a young woman who falls asleep on the last train of the night and wakes up to discover that the train has a second role – it carries the souls of the dead to “What Comes After”.

After some initial shock, however, she seems pretty OK with this.  She’s pretty much already given up on life and there are heavy hints that she was planning to buy a ticket for this particular train soon anyway.

You know, unless she has a fantastic and supernatural experience that convinces her that life is worth living.  That would be super handy.

It does kind of sit in the same sort of “is this really a game?” category that visual novels hang out in.  You have control over the character, and you walk through the train and need to press a button to talk to the various spirits – human, animal, or even plant – who are on their way to the afterlife, but that’s about it.  Once you’ve talked to enough of them, you get to see the story end.

And, hey, if you’re down for that ride, it’s a pretty unique little experience – and from Indonesia, which isn’t a country I associate with gaming (honorable mention: Dreadout).  Some of the translation could have used a second pass by an editor, and I would have liked the text to be just a LITTLE larger, but the dreamy art style carries it a long way.

Seriously, this was eye-strain city on the Switch screen.

As mentioned, you talk to a bunch of different spirits, most of whom already know that they’re dead and are perfectly cool with it.  One or two are angry, and there are a few with lasting regrets.  As a general rule, though, they think you’re a bit dumb for not realizing how good you have it, still being alive and all that.

Eventually you sit down with a cat for a bit, realize that you have stuff you still want to do in the real world, and wake up to do it.

Definitely the sort of experience to play through when you don’t mind feeling a little depressed, and the ending is happy enough that the overall emotional curve winds up positive.  I’m not sure I’d pay the seven bucks it normally goes for on the eShop, but the reason I wound up buying it myself was that I kept seeing it in the Deals section and eventually decided that it was worth the sale price of like half that.

 

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