Subsurface Circular is very different from my average train journey

Mike Bithell’s new text-based adventure shares similarities with my average train journey to the extent of robotic figures nodding their heads to some obnoxiously loud electronic music. I fear I am one of them.

essentially a short steam review summary


Luckily the trains I get on in the UK don’t really have chairs facing each other, so I don’t have to look at anyone

It’s a great self contained story. Not since Device 6 have I whipped out a notepad and started jotting down stuff to try and solve the puzzles. Without delving into any spoilers, the choice provided in the story had me genuinely sat deciding what to do for a while, a lot more thought provoking than some of the Telltale games’ decisions for example. That isn’t a knock at those games at all, I love them, but I usually feel binary and confident in the decision I make in a Telltale game, where as in this it’s a grey area in which you’re not quite sure whether what you’re doing is right (and as one character states, both choices will result in harrowing circumstances).

As the credits roll and the game cycles back to the opening menu (musically devoid aside from the familiar subway haze of brakes and doors), I sat percolating on the ramification of the decisions I had made, as there is evidently no in-game validation.

I would certainly recommend, amazing value considering the normal price is under a fiver and I got it for even cheaper with the special promotion. Bithell Games have thrown in a few additional features such as a developer commentary (always welcome), some hidden achievements and even a concept art gallery which is lovely.


The game’s simplistic and efficient UI. You just about can’t make out the barrage of insults. Someone’s a bit touchy.

A fascinating asymmetry, the game captures the subway atmosphere well despite the futuristic narrative and the supplementary fact that EVERYONE IS A ROBOT (something the ‘Teks’ themselves comment on in a humorous manner); train cars screech, passengers get off, characters can’t get signal (funny that we can’t escape this fucking inconvenience even in a fantasy world) and the stations and conversations built around them establish a believable society. This is an achievement considering you will never see the surface, or the decision you make coming to fruition

Congratulations to the team, I had a great time playing the game.

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