Death Road to Canada is an Indie randomised RPG game with Rogue elements published and developed by Rocketcat Games and Madgarden. It was originally available on PC, it was also ported to iOS and Android. Recently there was a console port by UKIYO which introduced Death Road to Canada to the Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and Playstation 4.
The game is available on the Playstation Store for your regional pricing.
The story is simple yet effective, the zombie apocalypse has happened, and, in this scenario, the only safe haven is Canada. So, your group of survivors must make the harsh journey starting from Florida across miles of hostile territory filled with bandits, zombies and other survivors who may join your group. Now to begin with I was sceptical as it seemed like a very simple concept that had been done to death already in other Oregon Trail style games however that all changed when I was a dog wielding a katana leading a group of anime fans who were also wielding katanas. Shortly after that Thor sent Valkyrie down with Mjolnir to aid me in my journey to Canada, suffice to say it was this point that I knew this was going to be an amazing game.
The game from start to end is only two weeks but by the end, it will have felt like so much more after everything you’ve had to go through. They’ll be a lot of events happen on one day which could be anything from encountering a group of bandits who kill one of your party to finding an injured animal in the road. The events are randomised as are the outcomes a lot of the time as I have come across the same encounter across multiple playthroughs and had different outcomes regardless of what I do. The randomisation is what will kill you more than anything and even the best run in the world can be ruined by the game giving you a wretched run of events that take your resources and/or kill your survivors, but would you expect anything less from a game with Rogue elements?
For the most part of the game you’ll be watching your car (if you have one) or your survivors running down the road with the often-hilarious story and random events in the text above. When you reach an area, you can scavenge for supplies the game will give you the option to loot the location or carry on if you don’t like the sounds of the location, but this will cost you gas and you will miss out on some valuable resources. It may also mean you don’t get to recruit some powerful rare characters like Valkyrie or Cloud from Final Fantasy VII
Sometimes the game will stop you for horde battles, in these, your band of survivors is put on a far too small area with a never-ending horde of zombies and you have to stay alive for a certain amount of time. Suffice to say that was how many of my first attempts at this game ended. You get swarmed and especially if you get forced into one of these battles when you have little to no ammo then you have no chance. Some of the rare characters can pick up the slack though as Valkyrie, in particular, was invaluable to me clearing hordes and eventually reaching Canada.
Now to what we all love in a good zombie game, the weapons at our disposal to kill the undead for good. There are a lot of weapons, both melee and ranged, that can be used to kill the zombies standing between you and Canada however while there is a great variety of weapons to fight off the zombie hordes the guns are the only ones’ worth using when you have horde battles. this is because hand weapons like bats, for example, take stamina and you can only do two or three swings before your character has to rest for a few seconds to recover. This obviously makes hand weapons next to useless and only worthwhile once you’ve run out of bullets which shouldn’t happen as long as you don’t waste your bullets on regular scavenging missions.
Graphics and Audio
The graphics are simple, it uses a pixilated style and while some may complain than newer shouldn’t rely on that style anymore I quite like it. It makes it look very retro and a game like this really doesn’t need new generation graphics to be entertaining. Everything is pleasing to look at which is something some other games nowadays cannot say. There are a few things that obviously had more time spent on them such as the Rare characters who all look exactly like who they are referencing which is a nice touch.
As for the soundtrack, well when I came into this I was not expecting to get such an upbeat track, it’s strange, catchy and for some unknown reason it works, don’t ask me how but it just does. I’d been expecting a very morbid and dark soundtrack so getting something so upbeat was surprising and felt right even though we had friends dying to random events left, right and centre.
Death Road to Canada is a game that will go from you loving it to you cursing its very existence, its brutal events combined with the occasional lack of AI help makes it frustrating but oh so rewarding once you finally get to Canada. It has a fair amount of replay value, with various unlockable skills and different game modes to try so you’ll be playing this for a long time and will certainly get your money’s worth. If Rogue games, games with insanely unfair RNG or survival games are not your thing then stay clear if you want to keep hold of your sanity.
|+ Tons of replay value||– Combat especially with hand weapons can be a bit clunky|
|+ Very entertaining story and events||– Unpredictable and in some instances extremely unfair events|
|+You can play as a dog wielding a katana – that alone makes this game worth buying||– Horde battles can get a little tedious|