Loco Motive is Coming to Nintendo Switch

loco motive pixel itch indie train murder mystery game funny

UPDATE: Loco Motive is headed for full release on Switch & PC in 2023 (sorry if I don’t update this right away.) I absolutely adore it, and if you want to watch the awesome trailer for it, check out this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EFahJJOdMzI

I’ve spent a good amount of time my life on trains or watching, learning, and reading about trains. For my own context, it’s always been a novel way to travel, and some don’t dig it, but I do. The chic yesteryear of trains was incredibly stylish at any rate. You’ll find that aesthetic all here in Loco Motive.

There’s décor, chivalry, imbibing, attire, and class. It’s a great place for a story. I’d like to create some expressed form, perhaps a story, with this aesthetic someday. I’ve always admired it since it has been present.

I want to focus on this game though and set aside whatever personal partialities I may have about it. I love trains, but there’s certainly more to it! Just a side note though, all my reviews come from a place of positivity, so these reviews are all recommendations!

Somewhere Deep in Switzerland & A “Loco Motive”

So, with Loco Motive, I am happy to find out, that it is a comedy! That’s pretty helpful to following the story. As the game progresses, the need for seriousness drifts off target further and further. I probably don’t need to share too much about the story, since that’s the purpose for playing it, but you’ll find entertainment playing it.

Quick description though: it is a standard Agatha Christie loving, Murder On the Orient Express, all-about-it Clue/family drama in 1939 aboard a train in Switzerland. The conflict is a very classic trope, a tried and true one. Like all mysteries, just being in the genre usually checks all the switches into place for creating all the elements of an effective plot and engaging the audience.

This is a super-duper cozy classic mystery theme that rolls smoothly down memory railroad for me

Loco Motive Plays Its Cards Right

There’s another huge thing I need to say about Loco Motive. The pixel art on this game totally rocks. I’m notoriously anxious–but still a fan!–for things that make up the mystery or crime genre. But in this pixel sprite setting, I can have fun without pushing it. The same is true for the comic themes throughout this game. (This is Mr. Dave Pizza from the future, and I just want to tell myself, that there are tons of games everywhere for everything for everyone. Thought you might like to know.)

This scene was so funny

The description on Itch.IO says that the point-and-click navigation system mimics but outperforms the familiar LucasArts adventure games associated with this style. I know a little bit about such things through osmosis, but I think I’d still consider myself a novice to point-and-click games. It works well in a PC 2D platformer, particularly one in a confined space, and it is effectively implemented in Loco Motive. Moving around and interacting is quite easy.

There is some blood, but not too graphic really and nothing to get hung upon. There are several borderline mature themes, but all mysteries tend to have this, so you’ll probably know what you’re getting yourself into. The sound effects are a little over-the-top during the murders, but I couldn’t help but laugh as it squirted into the air during what was an otherwise serious moment.

Solid 3rd Act in Loco Motive

Every character in Loco Motive has something to say about the incident, and you can talk to all of them. Most objects on the train can be interacted with, but not all of them are useful–some are though, so check everything.

Everybody is potentially guilty. You become a detective, even though you’re technically a lawyer. It’s your duty to get to the bottom of the murder. It is your duty to figure out what’s going on.

I am trying to stick the first impressions to around 30 minutes, although I occasionally spend more time depending on the game. This is usually enough, and games tend to step up the difficulty around the marker anyway–I don’t know why. It probably has more to do with me if I want to avoid simply being superstitious or something. But this seemed like a nice place to stop. (Incidentally, I’m pretty sure it was the only place to stop, now that I think about it.)

I Choo-Choo-Choose this Whodunnit

Again, the pixel art in Loco Motive really is amazing. These luxury liners were so ornate in their aesthetic it truly requires some awesome skill to create a game like this. I’d be totally on board if this game gets fleshed out a bit more. It is good! (And now it is)

The developers are working on adding more to the game, so keep your eye on it if this interests you. It’s itch.IO, so you make the decision of how you want to support its development. (Yeah, did I MENTION it? Loco Motive is headed to console and full PC release through Chucklefish. Guess one of my game wishes came true.)

Thanks for reading my review. Read more at MrDavePizza.com There is a lot more where this came from, and you are the best for taking an interest here. Comment below if you like too!

About Dave Pizza

Hi, I'm Dave! I'm a gaming enthusiast and writer who covers indie game content for Mr. Dave Pizza. If you have any questions, you can leave a comment or for more detailed topics email me at dave@mrdavepizza.com. If you'd like to know more about me or this site, check out my bio page at https://www.mrdavepizza.com/about-me/ Thanks for reading my stuff!

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments