User Score
6.5

Mixed or average reviews- based on 684 Ratings

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  1. Mar 4, 2012
    6
    I liked it but it just didn't make me feel like a part of the story, it felt more like walking a guided tour. I like games with a good story but this is more like an interactive picture book. Exploration is hardly awarded with extra depth in the story and it takes far to long to walk back to the right path however there are some very nice places to see. One more minor thing that annoyed meI liked it but it just didn't make me feel like a part of the story, it felt more like walking a guided tour. I like games with a good story but this is more like an interactive picture book. Exploration is hardly awarded with extra depth in the story and it takes far to long to walk back to the right path however there are some very nice places to see. One more minor thing that annoyed me were the plants, because once you notice they keep staring at you it can't be unseen. Because they are 2d and thus have no sides it makes sense that they did it this way but it still feels a bit awkward. In conclusion I'd say that this is a pretty good story but I don't think it should be placed in the game category. If it wasn't marked as a game I would definitely have rated it with an 8 or more. But if I had to recommend a storytelling game that actually feels like your part of the story I would pick either Amnesia, Penumbra or Bastion these are all completely different game as well from each other as from Dear Esther but the thing they all have in common is that they are all heavily based on their story however my examples are far more interactive. Expand
  2. Feb 15, 2012
    10
    I'm not exactly sure what I just played, but it was one of the most beautiful things that I have ever experienced. Dear Esther is something of a new genre of game, all to itself. It's more of an artistic expression coupled with minor interactivity and a frighteningly poetic story. As an advocate for games as art, this is my new "exhibit A". The visuals, the weather, the sounds, the music,I'm not exactly sure what I just played, but it was one of the most beautiful things that I have ever experienced. Dear Esther is something of a new genre of game, all to itself. It's more of an artistic expression coupled with minor interactivity and a frighteningly poetic story. As an advocate for games as art, this is my new "exhibit A". The visuals, the weather, the sounds, the music, and the narration all came together to give me an experience that was as immerse and gratifying as the best of more hardcore genres. I am personally terrified of heights, and there were certain moments in this game that put that fear into practice for me, and most games don't do that. It was a unique journey and I know that I will play it again someday, and again after that. But I don't know when. I'll have to let it simmer in my mind for awhile. Expand
  3. Feb 14, 2012
    9
    It would be difficult for me to call this a game in the traditional sense. It is certainly an adventure, and the fragmented, random narration really helps to expand on the very heavy themes found in Dear Esther. I certainly enjoyed it, and would definitely play through multiple times, just to get a better grasp on the big picture that the plot constantly alludes to. That said, the endingIt would be difficult for me to call this a game in the traditional sense. It is certainly an adventure, and the fragmented, random narration really helps to expand on the very heavy themes found in Dear Esther. I certainly enjoyed it, and would definitely play through multiple times, just to get a better grasp on the big picture that the plot constantly alludes to. That said, the ending is... remarkably intense, and the last action that you take really makes you think. Not enough games are willing to take existentialism and the strangeness of the unknown into their plot, and it definitely pays off in this one. This is the kind of plot that keeps you awake at night, thinking of actions and consequences, as well as how all things must end.

    Gameplay 5/10
    Atmosphere 9/10
    Plot 10/10
    Execution 10/10

    Excellent Game
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  4. Feb 19, 2012
    4
    A pretty visual game, but it is 85 minutes of gameplay for 10$. I cannot seem myself walking through that island again. Maybe at 3$ that would not be so bad
  5. Feb 14, 2012
    10
    To call this a game would be almost entirely inaccurate. This piece is better described as an interactive fiction narrative. The only game play mechanic in this work is to guide your character through the story. However, what makes this piece of work interesting and outstanding is the atmosphere that is created through the narrator's speech, the beautiful graphics, perfect music score, andTo call this a game would be almost entirely inaccurate. This piece is better described as an interactive fiction narrative. The only game play mechanic in this work is to guide your character through the story. However, what makes this piece of work interesting and outstanding is the atmosphere that is created through the narrator's speech, the beautiful graphics, perfect music score, and amazing ambient sound. This is an experience that no one should pass up, my first play-through took up a little over 2 hours of my time; for $10 this is a fantastic deal. Expand
  6. Feb 14, 2012
    10
    Originally a mod for Half-Life 2, this remake is very different from what you might expect a game to be.
    Calling it an interactive story would be more accurate. There is no "action", no real items or objectives, you just explore the island while a narrator tells you a story. It is certainly not for everyone, but for people that are looking for an experience rather than a game I would
    Originally a mod for Half-Life 2, this remake is very different from what you might expect a game to be.
    Calling it an interactive story would be more accurate. There is no "action", no real items or objectives, you just explore the island while a narrator tells you a story. It is certainly not for everyone, but for people that are looking for an experience rather than a game I would highly recommend it. The visuals and soundtrack are breathtaking, the narrator does an excellent job, and the atmosphere in general is amazing. If you are looking for something different and have the time and patience to immerse yourself into it, this game will provide you with an unforgettable experience.
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  7. Mar 12, 2012
    0
    A lot of people tend to try and justify the purchase of something that they cannot return. It's quite sad that people, held hostage by their own denial, have mistaken holding forward for gameplay and 'listless' narrative for a storyline. Sure, it has graphics, but every game has graphics. In fact, lots of films have graphics and some books have pictures in them too. And I think a film orA lot of people tend to try and justify the purchase of something that they cannot return. It's quite sad that people, held hostage by their own denial, have mistaken holding forward for gameplay and 'listless' narrative for a storyline. Sure, it has graphics, but every game has graphics. In fact, lots of films have graphics and some books have pictures in them too. And I think a film or graphic novel would be an infinitely more rewarding experience than this 45 minute "game", for the same price. Don't buy this. Expand
  8. Feb 18, 2012
    10
    Superb. If you are prepared for reflection, then you will be deeply moved by this masterpiece. Ignore the low ratings as they are not the intended audience. This is a work for adults.
  9. Apr 18, 2012
    1
    This is not a game. It is a story, that's it. Nothing more than a story, where you can walk around. It doesn't have anything else but the walking and the story. I don't think that this should be marked as a game, since this simply isn't a game.
  10. Jun 3, 2012
    0
    Horribly boring. I based my decision only because the reviews were ravingly good. Even the ratings were in the upper 80s. I will never base my choices on that again. I will from now on, download demos and see for myself.
  11. Feb 18, 2012
    0
    To each their own I guess. Dear Ester is not a game. At best it is an interactive movie. In reality it is one of the 1990 Multimedia scenery viewers. This "game" has been horribly mislabeled and advertised.
  12. Mar 7, 2012
    1
    i got this game the day it was released on steam, and about an hour after i was left more puzzled than anything the game had offered. it wasn't due to the story, or not being capable of deep thought. some of my favorite films are from the likes of tarkovsky (where the stalker game came from), jodorowski, and have a love of art, literature and all things strange, minimal etc. as my useri got this game the day it was released on steam, and about an hour after i was left more puzzled than anything the game had offered. it wasn't due to the story, or not being capable of deep thought. some of my favorite films are from the likes of tarkovsky (where the stalker game came from), jodorowski, and have a love of art, literature and all things strange, minimal etc. as my user name would imply i've played games of every genre since DOS. point and click adventures and so on. something like dark seed, or the path is really more reminiscent of what i had hoped for. dear esther just kind of tells you a story for an hour. at the end, i had no desire to replay it, and was left wondering if the money invested went to licensing fee's to pay for the music and narration. a few things change places, and a bit of the dialog is mixed up in replays. there's absolutely no puzzles, or interactivity other than listening watching and holding forward. upon sharing these thoughts on a forum like steam, you're immediately clawed at by a relentless army of fanboys who must have skipped over the last 20 years of PC gaming. to some this game is probably a great breakthrough, but alas i felt like it would have been great only if it were the prologue to an actual game. overall the experience was very negative to me, i felt like this should have been half price at the MOST, if not free. to top it off i was in disbelief that news dropped saying they made back all their investment, in a matter of hours after release. i guess this is why we are getting video games that could have been so much more these days. because most of them are just cash in's. they see a marketable area and go for it, inevitably enough people will buy any game that didn't cost a million bucks to produce and make it profitable. Expand
  13. Dec 10, 2014
    7
    Dear Esther is an interesting experience, although I'm hesitant to say it was good.The writing is obnoxious and sometimes cryptic, and it just comes off as pretentious. The story behind it is actually fairly good, however. The best part of this game for me was the gorgeous environments. The caves in particular were stunning. That being said, they basically have to be to balance out theDear Esther is an interesting experience, although I'm hesitant to say it was good.The writing is obnoxious and sometimes cryptic, and it just comes off as pretentious. The story behind it is actually fairly good, however. The best part of this game for me was the gorgeous environments. The caves in particular were stunning. That being said, they basically have to be to balance out the actual amount of time it takes to beat, which is about an hour. Overall this game was interesting, and it was worth the $2 I spent on it. $10 is just insane for this game. I would recommend this to anyone who likes art for its own sake, because that's really all I can consider this game to be. Just make sure you get it on sale. Expand
  14. Feb 1, 2015
    7
    Whether Dear Esther is a game or not is irrelevant, however the experience I derived from it is difficult to evaluate. I didn't regret the purchase, but I'm reluctant to call the 'game' enjoyable. If anything, it felt more like a spiritual journey in a sense; a journey that sometimes overextended itself in the more bland and empty sections of the game. This is primarily due to the lack ofWhether Dear Esther is a game or not is irrelevant, however the experience I derived from it is difficult to evaluate. I didn't regret the purchase, but I'm reluctant to call the 'game' enjoyable. If anything, it felt more like a spiritual journey in a sense; a journey that sometimes overextended itself in the more bland and empty sections of the game. This is primarily due to the lack of gameplay mechanics, so Dear Esther must rely heavily on the following three things - story, visuals and sound.

    Of those three, the visuals and sound are of great quality, imbuing a satisfying sense of tranquility, which sometimes shifted to a more haunting tone. The caves section in particular demonstrated excellent use of colour and was probably the only chapter in which I was fully engaged due to the constant change in the rock formations and scenery. Unfortunately, pretty rocks and water can only get you so far. It's ultimately up to the game's narrative that determines whether Dear Esther offers something more meaningful, and while it did, the delivery had more than a few flaws.

    Dear Esther's story relies heavily on the player's ability to interpret symbols and metaphors. It's like high school English class all over again, like analyzing a text but in digital form. There's nothing inherently wrong with this, but the dialogue is in my opinion far too convoluted and too full of purple prose for this interpretation to be done in an accessible manner. The fact that dialogue is randomly generated in this game also means that the player's interpretation is incomplete, they're not getting the full picture regardless of whether they explore the map or not. I think it's also unrealistic for a player to fully analyze and understand a paragraph of text that is read out with no more than 20 seconds of screen time and then never to be seen or heard of again, especially with the kind of writing that's presented in this game.

    Most players will end up floundering in confusion, and I suspect that for most of those who've played Dear Esther, the main reason they understood the story is because they read a wikipedia entry on the plot after they finished the game. That's what I did too, and when I consulted other wikis and read other people's interpretations, it was only then that things started to really make sense. Upon playing the game again, it was only then that I understood the various obscure references that formed the story. There's power in simplicity, and I feel that the Chinese Room made their writing too complex for the sake of sounding poetic. In the end, it becomes something that detracts from a potentially unique and unforgettable experience.

    Overall rating: 6.9/10
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  15. Mar 1, 2013
    0
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Possibly one of the most lamest games I have ever had the unfortunate displeasure of playing.

    The only thing that is good in the entire "multi-angle" movie is the scenery.

    The scenery looks amazing, however I'm quite sure you could see better with a cheap blender file rendering. Thankfully Steam had this game on offer when I bought it and I can see why, had I paid full price I'd have been taking it up with trading standards for false advertising.

    The game is advertised as an "adventure game" when I think of an adventure game I think of games like maybe text adventure games Behind Closed Doors, Very Big Cave Adventure, or point and click adventures like Secret of Monkey Island, Flight of the Amazon Queen, Grim Fandango, or puzzle adventure games like Myst or Dark Fall, or finally adventure/action games like Tomb Raider, or Uncharted.

    This game doesn't fit into any of these categories. This game is a very bad and very cheap effort at the games company trying to make a quick buck.

    The thing that makes the game so poor is that in the game the end user has absolutely nothing to do, other than admire the scenery and move the character around the island.

    Yes really that is it. It's like reading a Choose Your Own Adventure book without any turn to this page, or turn to that page.

    You have absolutely nothing to do within the game other than follow the path round try and veer off the path to look at something you quickly find yourself stuck on a rock unable to go any further, at most if you get bored there is a really big chasm that you can throw yourself into or drown yourself in the sea but unfortunately that just leads to a message stating "come back" and then a regeneration on the nearest land.

    There are no puzzles whatsoever in this game, there is stuff scrawled on walls like science symbols which you would have thought maybe used later in some kind of puzzle or something, but no they aren't used for anything.

    The scenery is stunning, especially when your in the cave, but other than that it is nothing more than just an interactive multi-angle movie which is something DVD's did years ago and is nothing new.

    As for it's definition as a game I'd actually question as to whether that is actually accurate the definition of game is as follows

    "A form of play or sport, esp. a competitive one played according to rules and decided by skill, strength, or luck.".

    There is no skill, strength or luck and I don't think just following a path around an island constitutes playing either, so it is more an interactive movie than a game.

    In addition to this the story line is just as bad. The entire story seems to depict the lives of a number of people 2 of them ended their lives on the island, whilst another 2 managed to kill themselves on the M5 motorway the scene of which is re-built in a pool, and finally you end up being another victim of the island or do you turn into a gull at the end and fly over the island?? Very bizarre story line.

    If you ever played Myst or Dark Fall and thought you might like it if they removed all the puzzles then you'd like this, but if you like the puzzles and at least some kind of a challenge then this is not the game for you.

    The game took me about 30 minutes to complete this morning, but now knowing how it works I could probably whizz round that island in about 10-15 minutes.
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  16. Jan 29, 2013
    3
    I'm all for stretching the boundaries of what can be considered a "game," and I love games with a emphasis on story. But this game fell flat. The story was uninteresting, the music was forgettable, and the pace was unbearably slow.
  17. Aug 12, 2012
    3
    Regardless of how good the storytelling is, or isn't, 10 USD is way too expensive for an hour of gameplay, let alone non-gameplay. If this is art, I'd rather stick to being an ignorant and uncultured hick.
  18. Jul 19, 2012
    0
    "Dear Esther, how horrid you truly are. Like a virtual tour I grew endlessly tired and helpless, evermore hopeless I was. Wanting, dreaming, and then dreading the time would come when I would then see the light~to find no answer; a shadows cast
  19. Sep 4, 2012
    3
    I like it when games dare to be different. I liked Penumbra, and I liked Amnesia even more; those games struck a nice balance with atmosphere and gameplay while being different from almost everything I had played before. This game, however, offers no such balance since it abandoned any semblance of gameplay altogether. It's been said here by other reviewers and I'll say it again, just toI like it when games dare to be different. I liked Penumbra, and I liked Amnesia even more; those games struck a nice balance with atmosphere and gameplay while being different from almost everything I had played before. This game, however, offers no such balance since it abandoned any semblance of gameplay altogether. It's been said here by other reviewers and I'll say it again, just to reinforce the notion: there is no interactivity to speak of and no real gameplay whatsoever. There are no meaningful choices to make, no consequences, no inventory to manage, no characters to interact with, no enemies to defeat or evade, no objectives to complete; you can't even control when your flashlight turns on and off (this feature is automanaged for you as you enter and leave unlit areas). It is a game that dared to be so different that it actually stopped being a game. Moving on, I don't want to obsess over what Dear Esther IS NOT this whole review, so I will talk about what it IS. As others here have pointed out, it is simply a different way of telling a story... a visual metaphor, if you will. In my opinion, it is an unsuccessful way of telling a story, and I wont be paying for any other "games" that may appear in this "genre". As a game, story, and movie respectively, it was boring and un-entertaining. Dear Esther's soundtrack is quite good, and it is visually is nice to look at, especially in the caves chapter; I will award a couple points for those qualities, even though I want to give it a flat zero. I'll award one more point to the fact that the developers had the balls think out side the box... in fact, they stepped outside the box, picked it up, folded it, put it in the recycle bin, went to the nearest Blockbuster Video and rented What Dreams May Come. So that's it, a generous 3 out of 10. Expand
  20. Oct 2, 2012
    8
    Even though it's questionable if you can call Dear Esther a game since it's more of an interactive story telling. If you're going in to it expecting it to be a game, you're gonna have a bad time. But if you're going in to it with the expectation of seeing exceptionally beautiful landscapes and and a great narrative, chances are you'll end up loving the game. 8/10
  21. Jul 18, 2012
    1
    I'm all for great story telling in a game, but this is no game at all. You explore a landscape while being told a story. No puzzles, no combat, no inventory, no jumping. You can't interact with anything. None of the buttons do anything except zoom in (they all zoom in). Occasionally you find a fork in the path you are on and think "Oh man, some semblance of risk/reward" only to findI'm all for great story telling in a game, but this is no game at all. You explore a landscape while being told a story. No puzzles, no combat, no inventory, no jumping. You can't interact with anything. None of the buttons do anything except zoom in (they all zoom in). Occasionally you find a fork in the path you are on and think "Oh man, some semblance of risk/reward" only to find out it's either a dead end or it winds back around to the other path. This is as linear,l and as boring, as a "game" can get.

    I gave it 1 point for the atmosphere and writing.
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  22. Aug 12, 2012
    2
    First things first, this is not a game. By it's own admission, it is more an experiment of narrative in the game medium. It fails, in my estimation, a failed experiment. If you've played the free "Stanley Parable" mod for Half-Life 2, you will have at least an inkling of what kind of template Dear Esther uses (though clearly, the former is more lighthearted than the latter). Let's throwFirst things first, this is not a game. By it's own admission, it is more an experiment of narrative in the game medium. It fails, in my estimation, a failed experiment. If you've played the free "Stanley Parable" mod for Half-Life 2, you will have at least an inkling of what kind of template Dear Esther uses (though clearly, the former is more lighthearted than the latter). Let's throw some complements about this title out there first. It does have some nice graphics and the environmental design is striking at times and...umm...well, I'm sadly out of good things to say. The next nicest thing I have to say is at least it only lasts about an hour. You start the game with no idea how or why you are there, nor any instructions. So, inevitably you begin to walk around. And I hope you enjoy walking around, because that is the only action that you, as the player, get to do. As you amble onward, every 5 or so minutes the game spits a bit narrative at you. Unlike the Stanley Parable, none of Dear Esther is particularly interesting or well written, and it most definitely isn't cohesive. I believe that lack of cohesion was done unwittingly, rather it was used as a mechanic by the game's designers to give the paper thin prose an air of mystery...being obtuse makes things hard to understand and, when done right, makes you work to follow the thread and give you a sense of accomplishment or reward once you start piecing things together. Problem being on this breadcrumb laden story's path, there is no thread. You come across bits of narrative slowly (and I do mean slowly - you walk at the pace of a geriatric snail, mash the Shift key all you'd like), and over time you realize none of them really connect. There is just random narrative, islands of text that refuse to work together in harmony to create an overarching story. Little things that do start to have any kind of meaning or interest or appear to be revealed in interesting ways end up being things that are already explained to you in the synopsis of the game. If you want a mild surprise, read as little about this game as you can - including, and especially, it's own synopsis. In the end, you might as well just fire up Skyrim, start wandering aimlessly, and play a 15 second clip from a different book-on-tape every 5 or so minutes. It'll be just as interesting. All I can say is I'm glad I was able to get the game on sale for $1.39. Expand
  23. Jan 1, 2013
    3
    This game was quite simply boring and not an "experience" as many call it. Its story isn't bad and the graphics look nice, but aside from those two features the game is no fun. All you are doing is walking around at a slow pace throughout the duration of the game and it is being acclaimed likely because people are attempting to look for something in the game that isn't there. Don't wasteThis game was quite simply boring and not an "experience" as many call it. Its story isn't bad and the graphics look nice, but aside from those two features the game is no fun. All you are doing is walking around at a slow pace throughout the duration of the game and it is being acclaimed likely because people are attempting to look for something in the game that isn't there. Don't waste your time with this game, it would better be spent playing games that are guaranteed to be fun. Expand
  24. Feb 1, 2013
    1
    I wouldn't even really call this a game. Its just wandering around in some nice graphics with a not so good story line that doesn't really go anywhere.

    Its kinda like a book with a great cover and blurb....but was never finished, and somehow is being sold in stores...

    I play most of the games I have at least twice. But this one I wont go near again as its just a waste of my time.
  25. Jul 29, 2013
    0
    It's not a game. You just run around and listen to random paragraphs of text which doesn't make much sense. Playing this so-called game for free is not worth the time spent, but paying for it is just nonsense.
  26. Aug 9, 2013
    0
    Any number known to man would represent an overrated score for this walking simulator. Dragging your excruciatingly slow character across the island is terribly uninteresting, and the tale being told does not make up for that. If this was actually art, as some would like to believe, you would see at least some creative use of the possibilities of videogames at work, but no, let's just walkAny number known to man would represent an overrated score for this walking simulator. Dragging your excruciatingly slow character across the island is terribly uninteresting, and the tale being told does not make up for that. If this was actually art, as some would like to believe, you would see at least some creative use of the possibilities of videogames at work, but no, let's just walk around while hearing a story. I actually paid money to hear a poor audiobook while exploring a virtual place quite resembling the real world a few steps from home.

    Art can explore new ways to use a particular media, and the greatest works of art may change the way we see that media in a permanent way. This game doesn't even try to explore the possibilities of gaming. If this was a movie there would literally be no difference, except you wouldn't be pressing W. It is not fun, it is not creative, it is not an interesting story, but you can still buy it and tell everybody who says it isn't good that the game is just to deep for them.
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  27. Oct 22, 2013
    10
    This is hardly a video game, and more a piece of art. The scenery is breathtaking, the music is spectacular, and the story is eerie. A lot of people won't see this for what it is simply b/c there is little to do except walk around. This is the type of game that you lock the doors and turn off all lights, and sounds and just experience it. Experience the history, the serenity, theThis is hardly a video game, and more a piece of art. The scenery is breathtaking, the music is spectacular, and the story is eerie. A lot of people won't see this for what it is simply b/c there is little to do except walk around. This is the type of game that you lock the doors and turn off all lights, and sounds and just experience it. Experience the history, the serenity, the loneliness, the sorrow or an island world and a mans story. I found the game to be like a good book with the pieces of the narrator slowly filling in the gaps to find out just what has happening, is going to happen, and what once was happening. Though it was short, I felt it was worth every penny of the sale price, and has replay value on the living and breathing world alone. I can't imagine if skyrim had had a world so alive, bright, dark, and dead such as this. What an amazing time for video games we live in. If you play consoles and Call of Duty, you won't be able to appreciate this sort of artwork most likely. Expand
  28. Dec 25, 2014
    0
    tl;dr: Interesting and provoking thoughts, but NOT a game, NOT worth money.

    Dear Esther is an artistic work, I cannot deny that, but the creator lost all right for respect and credit when putting this up for sale. There are many modders out there who contribute much greater, albeit different, efforts for free. Whether intentional or not, putting it up here on steam was awfully
    tl;dr: Interesting and provoking thoughts, but NOT a game, NOT worth money.

    Dear Esther is an artistic work, I cannot deny that, but the creator lost all right for respect and credit when putting this up for sale. There are many modders out there who contribute much greater, albeit different, efforts for free. Whether intentional or not, putting it up here on steam was awfully misleading and tricked many into buying it, believing it is an actual adventure game. At least everyone I know who bought the game, including myself, sprung that trap.

    It is an insult to all modders out there that this "game" is being sold. The developers of Dear Esther were thrown a lot of money that others deserve more.
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  29. May 19, 2012
    3
    Very pretty graphics, the sea looks excellent and the mountains are great, if you like graphics then buy this program. The story is weird and interesting but this is NOT a game. It is a walk though a dark and wonderful 3D island, you can't win or lose so no game.
  30. Jul 16, 2012
    2
    I picked this game up in the Steam Summer Sale on July 16th. People complain about video games becoming movies, then talk about this game as if it is something unique or game changing. This game is an interactive island walking simulator that tells you bits of story every now. The people telling you that it is an "interactive fiction narrative" or "interactive story" are misleading you.I picked this game up in the Steam Summer Sale on July 16th. People complain about video games becoming movies, then talk about this game as if it is something unique or game changing. This game is an interactive island walking simulator that tells you bits of story every now. The people telling you that it is an "interactive fiction narrative" or "interactive story" are misleading you. It is no more an interactive story than a book is an interactive story. The story is partially randomized at the very start of the game and it is set in stone at that point. You must then walk through the island, discovering fragments of the story, and have the game tell the story to you. There is nothing intellectual, artsy, or deep about this game. The game is stunningly lackluster in everything that makes it a game. This game comes across as being made by a company that wanted to do a 1 hour cinematic, but knew that moviegoers wouldn't care for this narcissistic, pretentious drivel. Expand
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 37
  2. Negative: 3 out of 37
  1. Jan 10, 2013
    30
    With no story or true narrative to latch onto, there's no reason for players to care about what's going on. And there's only one thing ever going on in Dear Esther: nothing. Broken up into individual pieces-the graphics, writing, and music clearly show talent and might have led to interesting stories or games-but together they form a dull, lifeless experience that's quickly forgotten.
  2. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Apr 25, 2012
    50
    To call this piece "a game" and rate it as an ordinary game is not fair. You can find many flaws in the game's mechanics but if you just follow the story your experience will be unforgettable. [Apr 2012]
  3. CD-Action
    Mar 13, 2012
    55
    Thechineseroom studio managed to create something surprising and original, but Dear Esther is something you experience rather than play. [April 2012, p.79]