Generally favorable reviews - based on 66 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 48 out of 66
  2. Negative: 0 out of 66
  1. Aug 23, 2013
    The Unfinished Swan is a creative experiment that’s worth a play, even if some aspects feel incomplete.
  2. Dec 10, 2012
    The Unfinished Swan is a beautifully crafted, unconventional, sophisticated and provocative game denying the gameplay stereotype by a constant surprising of a gamer. The game is resisting to deplete all of its interesting themes in quite possibly the most annoying way - it ends itself in the middle of the road, at the place where the gamer is willing to submit to it completely.
  3. Dec 4, 2012
    The Unfinished Swan isn't without its charms, and there were moments in the abandoned city, with the vines overgrowing walls and bridges in all directions, that I almost loved it. However, in its very short runtime The Unfinished Swan introduces too many different ideas and doesn't sufficiently explore or refine any of them-not even the bad ones. That might suit the theme, but it makes for a game that feels frustratingly incomplete.
  4. Nov 30, 2012
    A brief, sweet experience made all the better by its unique presentation and interesting mechanics. [Issue#225, p.82]
  5. 90
    Surreal creation brings a unique experience to gamers and presents itself as a carefully polished precious stone. [Dec 2012]
  6. Nov 29, 2012
    More of an artistic experiment than a real game. Its visuals are beautiful and it offers various gameplay mechanics but none of them is particularly engaging. [CD-Action 13/2012, p.67]
  7. Nov 26, 2012
    Unlike anything else out there: beautiful and inventive. [Christmas 2012, p.100]
  8. Nov 25, 2012
    Charming, beautiful and fresh; like playing through your favourite bedtime story. [Christmas 2012, p.88]
  9. Absolutely enchanting from start-to-finish, Swan is a real treat and a prime example of why bigger isn't always better. [Holiday 2012, p.77]
  10. Nov 15, 2012
    The Unfinished Swan is more than just black and white. The Unfinished Swan is simply a fantastic fairytale adventure. [Nov 2012]
  11. Nov 14, 2012
    Succinct, smart, tight, fresh, mature and beautiful. One of the year's standout titles. [Dec 2012]
  12. Ian Dallas himself emphasized that exploration and discovery are the core themes of The Unfinished Swan. So it's a bit unfortunate that only the first level truly embraces this concept, where you're confronted with nothing except for an endless blank space. [November 2012, p.76]
  13. Nov 10, 2012
    The Unfinished Swan is best seen as an interactive bedtime story. There are no enemies to kill, the threats to Monroe's safety are few and far between and there's nothing too taxing to figure out, but that's not what this title is all about. If you sometimes tire of the triple A titles and enjoy seeing what else the medium of games can offer, or you have enjoyed creations like Journey over the past few years, then Unfinished Swan should be on your list of games to purchase.
  14. Yeah, the puzzles are moderately difficult, and (we think) the levels are linear, but there's simply no denying childlike wonder Unfinished Swan engenders, nor the indelible mark it leaves upon your heart. [December 2012, p70]
  15. 100
    There are very few games which are able to buck trends with aplomb and do it this gracefully. Pick it up when you can and give it the time it deserves.
  16. 80
    The Unfinished Swan is a great experience for the growing audience that appreciates this kind of video game.
  17. Nov 6, 2012
    The Unfinished Swan isn't exactly a masterpiece, but at least it aspires to mastery. There are few titles that take such obvious risks and attempt to give an increasingly mainstream population of gamers an inspired, original adventure.
  18. Oct 30, 2012
    The Unfinished Swan might be a very arty game. It's not a Van Gogh by a long shot. The gameplay stays the same throughout the game, and that's just plain boring. A big thumbs up for the idea, it just lacks a finishing touch, the hand of a master painter, so to say.
  19. Oct 30, 2012
    Dreamlike and brilliantly white, until you give the world color. The Unfinished Swan is visually breathtaking and the story it tells, presented as a children's tale, invites to reflection.
  20. Oct 27, 2012
    The Unfinished Swan is not a common game but definitely a work of art. A pearl of game and visual design that no one must leave behind.
  21. Oct 25, 2012
    You'll quickly forget about the short length of The Unfinished Swan when you step into the wonderful world of the game. It is an imaginative journey where the level design surprises you time after time.
  22. Oct 24, 2012
    More a missed opportunity than anything else, The Unfinished Swan is a pleasant fairytale story with a some good ideas and one or two magic moments. In the end though it is easy to come away with the feeling that this was a brief and very linear experience that just hinted at something that could have been truly great.
  23. Oct 23, 2012
    It's hard to give any notation to The Unfinished Swan, as it's another arty conceptual game from Sony Studios, with terrific ideas of gameplay. Unfortunately, those good features aren't going any further and you will probably finish it in about three hours. Some of you won't be interested in paying for such a short game, especially if you aren't of the poetic kind. For the others, it's an experience that deserved to be played.
  24. Oct 22, 2012
    If you're a sucker for artsy indie games that tell an interesting story and feature unique gameplay, then you'll certainly love The Unfinished Swan. If you're not quite sure what you're getting in to, than wait for the demo or check out the trailer at the very least. Either way, The Unfinished Swan is a PSN game worthy of your attention.
  25. Oct 22, 2012
    In fairness, the fairytale nature of The Unfinished Swan's story strongly suggests that this is a game aimed at a younger audience, and when considered in that light, it does well to introduce the basics of the puzzle genre at a level that children will easily pick up. Unlike the best children's stories, however, there isn't much going on beneath the surface, and those intrigued by the game's unique premise will be left wishing there was more to it than just a few clever ideas.
  26. Oct 22, 2012
    The first truly brilliant PSN game since Journey blew everyone's mind last year. A unique experience you won't forget any time soon.
  27. Oct 22, 2012
    Where Giant Sparrow's narrative vision is clearly focused, The Unfinished Swan's gameplay deviates rather rapidly from that opening castle of wonder.
  28. Oct 22, 2012
    While the talented (and surprisingly small) team of developers at Giant Sparrow deserve immense credit for their efforts here, I think Sony also deserve a pat on the back for publishing unique art-house titles like this.
  29. Oct 22, 2012
    There's a reason you'll finish it in a day: because you won't be able to tear yourself away.
  30. Oct 20, 2012
    The Unfinished Swan tries to touch the player with a special aesthetic and a unique gameplay concept, but it only succeeds on an average level. It loses itself too much in trying to be something special and never really grabs the player because of it. It lacks unity and continuity and therefore doesn't let its beautiful mold settle, which leaves the game with a pretty aura, instead of a soul.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 93 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 25
  2. Negative: 3 out of 25
  1. Oct 24, 2012
    Unfinished swan is representative of its own theme
  2. Oct 23, 2012
    This is the most intuitive unique game that's come out since Journey. You're in an all white space and to figure out where you can go you haveThis is the most intuitive unique game that's come out since Journey. You're in an all white space and to figure out where you can go you have to throw paint randomly out there until stairs, hallway, etc are revealed. It's a blast figuring out these puzzles. I recommend this to anyone who likes fun. Full Review »
  3. May 28, 2014
    While I give Unfinished swan credit for being something refreshingly different, it also seems to rub that point in a bit too much. The gameWhile I give Unfinished swan credit for being something refreshingly different, it also seems to rub that point in a bit too much. The game seems to be trying too hard to be artsy to the point that you are not sure if you should be playing with it or just looking at it..

    But, once the novelty wears off, the game does feel a bit barren and very basic. The art style is pretty, and the story cute, kind of like a kids story book. But, like kid's storybook it gets a little dull after a while.

    Unfinished Swan is clearly a milestone in gaming opening up many future possibilities, but it is also just the beginning and requires a bit more substance to make it more than it is.
    Full Review »