Tuesday 15 October 2013

New Game - The Stanley Parable

While browsing the web at a friends place I came across this very peculiar game. If you can call it that.

Image Source: http://takeoffeveryzig.wordpress.com

Exploring the internet for information on this subject is a bit of a waste. The game is so confusing and avant garde that descriptions are very vague. Since all official information that has been release by developers Galactic Cafe are just going to leave you with questions.

The game is called The Stanley Parable for one reason I can deduce. This maybe wrong but it's all I can think of.
The game is very heavily narrated. The narrator gives you direction on how to play. Where to go. Though it never seems to progress in any logical way. The narrator I believe is the famous Stanley. I say this because the whole game is a parable. Consistently talking about what has, is, and should be happening. You as a character may make decisions, interact and move around as you will but, as many games portray their main character you are a silent protagonist.

The Steam Train show from Game Grumps fame got access to a specially design demo of the game for them. The abnormality of the event sequences is explained well within this one video.

By now you're probably really confused. Well I believe that's the idea. The game seems to be holding one purpose. That would be to satirically express a massage about games and the arbitrary elements among them. Taking all the aspects of games that seem to be tropes in the industry about poor design quality or tedious mechanics, and fusing them into one sentient being named Stanley.

Another sneak peak includes Stanley talking about the critique of another player and his response to that.


Developed by Davey Wreden in 2011 as a mod for Half-Life 2. It has been taken to a whole new level and is being released in two days as of writing this post, on the 17th of October, 2013. The mod is very similar in game play and story. A lot of plot elements and experiences were added for this new remastered high definition stand-alone title. 

The main reason behind this game's unique design was based of a Wreden's perception that a lot of tripe-A titles make lots of assumptions about the people playing their games. If a player would like to try and figure out different variations to event sequences, games don't actually offer a way to answer those questions. Wreden stated, 
"That came from having played games my entire life, from asking "what if" over and over while playing" in an interview with Shacknews.
Galactic Cafe has also developed other interestingly strange titles that seem like totally satiracal pieces. This includes a Kanye West Twitter simulator. Where in this game you can tweet for Kanye but whatever you type, the game just causes a predeclared tweet to emerge. Theses are also satirical. You can follow people. You gain points for doing so which is probably some sort of a statement on value people put on having followers and Kanye's aggressive marketing for popularity.

In all, Wreden has developed a truly bizarre game which could do us all a service about informing us on better interactive/ immersive game design. The way this message will be received is for you to decide when this game comes out on the 17th of October on Steam.

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