Steam Next Fest: Road 96 promises a dazzling web of adventure

Each time it starts with questions – but each time they're different questions. First trip, when I'm watching a movie, what do I watch for? Do I want to be scared? To learn something? To feel something? Second trip, when I travel, do I travel alone or with friends? With family?

I love the idea of a procedural road-trip, but I am also wary. Surely that web of uniqueness is either ready to overwhelm or disappoint. One way, I'm frozen with the sheer number of options. The other, the only thing unique was that I had apple pie instead of cherry pie, or I travelled in a tractor instead of a station wagon.

Road 96 is a bit of a revelation, then. Even now, and even in demo form, albeit a generous, replayable demo that gives you a decent idea of how things work and what you're getting into. The setting is always the same – summer 1996, in a tinpot dictatorship that looks an awful lot like America. A sham election is on the way and the despot is likely to get in. Young people are fleeing to the border – but how will they get across the wall?

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