Virginia Image
Metascore
74

Mixed or average reviews - based on 36 Critics What's this?

User Score
4.9

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 130 Ratings

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  • Summary: Virginia is a single-player first-person thriller set in a small town with a secret. Experience a missing person investigation through the eyes of graduate FBI agent Anne Tarver.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 36
  2. Negative: 3 out of 36
  1. Sep 23, 2016
    100
    There are very few games as emotionally affecting as this. The story is thrilling, powerful and thought-provoking, and the music sends chills straight through your soul.
  2. Oct 5, 2016
    90
    A weird and wonderful game that although short, leaves one hell of a mark.
  3. Sep 27, 2016
    86
    Virginia is a great game for film lovers. The David Lynch universe is really well made.
  4. Games Master UK
    Nov 9, 2016
    79
    An interactive story that blends dreamy police procedural with Lynchian nightmare to intriguing effect [Nov 2016, p.78]
  5. CD-Action
    Jan 12, 2017
    70
    By constantly comparing their game to “Twin Peaks” and “True Detective” the developers set the bar so high that they could not fulfill expectations. Nevertheless Virginia is an interesting experiment worth your time (especially that it only takes two hours to complete). [13/2016, p.58]
  6. Sep 23, 2016
    70
    A disorienting game which delivers a twisted story and a wonderful soundtrack. The gameplay, though, puts the player in a passive role, and the PC version shows some technical flaws. A conceptual project that will be judged as brilliant by some players - but also boring by many others.
  7. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Nov 5, 2016
    20
    Calling it a waste is too rude, but I cannot imagine why would someone pay for such a puffy nonsense. Several clever moments cannot save the game, which only tries to look like a piece of art. [Issue #268]

See all 38 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 23
  2. Negative: 10 out of 23
  1. Oct 1, 2016
    10
    Wow, what an experience! I played it at a friends house, have no plans on replaying it, yet went ahead and paid for it to support what theWow, what an experience! I played it at a friends house, have no plans on replaying it, yet went ahead and paid for it to support what the devs have done here.

    If you're a fan of Blendo games (Gravity Bone, Thirty Flights of Loving, Quadrilateral Cowboy), but also like the thoughtfulness and drama of The Chinese Room (Dear Esther, Everybodys Gone to The Rapture) than you will love this game.

    Don't listen to people complaining about the game length, they really need to understand game development more. No good film or piece of music begins by setting out how long it will be. Gamers need to start thinking quality, not quantity. The two hours it takes to complete is paced perfectly, had it lasted much longer than attention would start to fade.

    Since there's a demo available, I'll just end off with a comment on the music. The score is fantastic, unbelievably high levels of production value, and is a step in the right direction for the industry. Play with headphones! The sountrack adds a lot of emotion, and I don't see that as a bad thing at all. You must experience it.
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  2. Sep 28, 2016
    9
    Phenomenal, interactive narrative experience.

    There's no high scores but the act of interactivity in the thing made it more compelling for
    Phenomenal, interactive narrative experience.

    There's no high scores but the act of interactivity in the thing made it more compelling for me. I'm not going to write a long review explaining whether or not this is a game (it could only be experienced on a machine that allows the user to control parts, interact with areas and feel like they're a part of it) but I will say you should play it. Play it and then talk about your interpretation with anyone that will listen. The thing is pretty oblique, but oh man have I enjoyed dwelling on the thing since I first saw the credits roll.
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  3. Sep 29, 2016
    8
    This game (though it's not really a game in the strictest sense - there is no actual game-play, only exploring areas and moving the plotThis game (though it's not really a game in the strictest sense - there is no actual game-play, only exploring areas and moving the plot forward in set ways by interacting with the highlighted objects and characters) is certainly an interesting experience. There is a lot of detail and nuance in the surroundings and the actions of the NPCs, and the world feels real enough that at times I actually felt afraid to make the player character turn around for fear of what I would see. Given that there is literally no way to get hurt or be set back, that's an impressive level of psychological impact.

    Having that said, there were some parts that I thought were vague and confusing - and not in the interesting what-is-really-going-on-here, is-this-dream-or-reality way that the game strives for (and often, in fairness, succeeds at). Given how much the game depends on a sense of immersion, any moment when you're not sure where you are and what you're doing is a problem. To be sure, it's very impressive how often you DO understand what's going on without a single line of dialog or even much in the way of written records, but still - at times, I felt like the game was failing to either show OR tell, and dropped me out of the story as a result.

    All in all, I would consider it flawed but still interesting. If you have twenty bucks to spend on a few hours of strange and haunting experiences, I'd recommend it.
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  4. Sep 24, 2016
    5
    Sorry, I'd love to recommend this game, but it just didn't do it for me.

    I have nothing against mostly narrative 'walkie' experiences - I
    Sorry, I'd love to recommend this game, but it just didn't do it for me.

    I have nothing against mostly narrative 'walkie' experiences - I loved 'Dear Esther' which was like a haunting eulogy/poem, and liked 'Everybody's Gone To The Rapture' with it's small town dramas set against an apocalyptic backdrop. 'Gone Home' was nice too with the house revealing bits and pieces of the characters' past.

    I think the difference here is that there's absolutely no dialogue, text, ANYTHING except animation and music. So it's all left up to your imagination as to what's going on. The problem for me was that the storytelling just wasn't strong or interesting enough to grab me at any point, even though the music kept trying to convince me that I was taking part in 'epic' scenes. When the 'revelations' come at the end, they make little sense, emotionally or intellectually even if you've been following all the 'clues' along the way.

    I've heard some comparisons to 'Twin Peaks' but other than an obvious homage scene in a roadside bar with a sound-alike tune playing, it reminded me more of 'The X Files'. The music especially was very very reminiscent of 'The X Files'. Imagine an episode of 'The X Files' without dialogue. In first person. That jump cuts around. And you're not sure what's present/past/future/hallucinations. Which is the major issue here... other than some basic plot, I was never quite sure what's going on, why, or what meaning it had in the grander scheme of things... so I never got caught up in it.

    It sort of feels like it's going to be playing a detective game... but you don't do any detecting or figure anything out. You just sort of click through scene after scene. If you do happen to walk around... you can occasionally pick up a flower or a feather, which at the beginning you assume there must be some meaning or point to, but the meaning never really comes...

    Overall the experience was a little too willfully vague and arty for my tastes and left me cold. Points for a nice art style, lighting etc. While the music was well orchestrated, again it felt a little heavy handed without knowing exactly what was going on.

    Even for ~$10... it's hard to recommend this game. Emotionally it didn't grab me. Intellectually it was too vague for me to feel like I was figuring anything out. Mechanically there's really nothing to do other than scan for the next hotspot. Narratively the story is pretty slight and doesn't hold much weight because you're perpetually waiting for clarity which never comes.

    Advice for their next game? Steer a little less on the obscure side, just a little, if you want your players to be able to get wrapped up in the tale you're telling.

    2.5/5.
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  5. Sep 27, 2016
    3
    Not a game, not an experience, not really a walking simulator either. Hard to categorize this title, but one thing is for sure - it's awkward.Not a game, not an experience, not really a walking simulator either. Hard to categorize this title, but one thing is for sure - it's awkward.

    There is some story, but Virginia won't allow you to follow it, because it will chaoticaly jump from scene to scene before you could even read half the text written on files. The characters are bland, and not only because they won't say a word, but because it's very hard to follow on who? where? what? why? The visuals are fine, but the world is as lifeless as it could be. You basically wander around empty spaces looking for a next spot to click (which is incredibly easy, considering that the mouse cursor changes after you hit a live spot).

    The only strong point is the score played by the Philharmonic Orchestra from Prague. That's why I'm giving this game a 3. Other than that, I'd tell you to stay away from this one. If you have to, watch it on youtube or something. It takes around two, two-and-a-half hours tops, and you'll be able to rewind the boring parts. For me it was a no-no.
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  6. Sep 25, 2016
    1
    There's not enough video game, especially when the product is being sold as a game. Your interaction is so minimized that the game doesn'tThere's not enough video game, especially when the product is being sold as a game. Your interaction is so minimized that the game doesn't even ask you to walk around. You'll barely be allowed to move around a single room before it decides to jump cut yu to the next part of the plot. Your actions also have no bearing on the plot, and at no point is your skill ever required to actually progress. My advice? Watch it on youtube, you won't miss a thing.

    Does it hold up as an experience, though? No, not really. Though it attempts to be minimalistic without telling you anything through words, it still leaves too many questions unanswered, and because we never get to know the characters, there's no reason to care about them. Thus when the experience asks us to feel sad, there's no precedent, so you're left feeling nothing. The worst part of it all is that there's nothing inherently wrong with the story. It's not so bad that I can at least laugh at it. It's actualy boring, which is worse than being offensively bad.
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  7. Sep 28, 2016
    0
    Atari's ET 2600 has more narrative falling down a pixelated well than this mess.

    This is the problem with hipstery creators... they don't
    Atari's ET 2600 has more narrative falling down a pixelated well than this mess.

    This is the problem with hipstery creators... they don't get that they don't get what videogaming is all about.
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See all 23 User Reviews