I’ve actually never watched any of the Planet of the Apes films so Planet of the Apes: Last Frontier was my first experience with this cinematic universe and it was one that left me interested in the world itself but less so about the characters and story of the game.
Having not seen the movies im not a hundred percent sure but I believe the events of Last Frontier are tied in with the films in some capacity. I can imagine a lot of the appeal to players comes from that and the Telltale-esque experience. From the style of clothing people wear and the kind of style the human settlement has there is a Western feel to the people in the game in contrast to the tribal feel of the apes. Players make choices as a character from each of the factions as the story progresses. Human settlement leader Jess has to make decisions relating to a pair of ‘ape hunters’ and how to deal with the apes that come into town just as the presence of the ape tribe becomes known; while Bryn, the middle son of tribe leader Khan has to deal with how to get his tribe through the harsh winter approaching while they’re stuck in the mountains.
Overall the narrative is okay and visually it is one of the best looking games in its genre, so there’s no comic-like artstyle taking away from the fact this is based on a film series. My main issues were how there’s not that many huge differences that the choices make until the end. Yeah, there’s around 19 variations of 3 different major endings but even when I continuously argued against combat fellow characters just ignored me mostly and I then go on to join said fighting I just opposed. It just made the characters feel like huge hypocrites in that situation. This feeling isn’t as bad if you take the other routes in the game but throughout Last Frontier I felt like the side characters were always the ones putting things in motion and my choices were just an opinion that meant nothing until the very late game. Even then you can see the very clear cut routes that’s the ‘canon’ route because of the clear nature of the characters.
A character relationship menu also feeds into the outcome of certain scenes and the outcomes. Really this is the big thing that makes the changes since your choices only affect the relationships for the most part. Even then, the side characters also have clear natures and overall there is very little reason I found to naturally make the ‘bad’ choices since there aren’t many times you’re confronted with truly tough decisions that question your morality.
A few extra features exist such as active Mixer voting support and hero stat support but a main one is 4 player local co-op. Which is good that you can get friends involved in the decisions with you and could probably lead to interesting moments if you disagree but it’s kind of ruined by the lack of decisions that are tough to make. That’s the sort of thing you want for a co-op experience for these kinds of games. I can also see local co-op being quite hard for a full group of people to get through in one sitting since the game is just under 3 hours long for one playthrough.