To be honest, 2013 was a pale year when it came to game releases, I didn’t get particularily into a game the same way I did with Bastion. Last year I was very excited about Metro: Last Light and said I had no doubts 4A would make another solid Metro game, oh boy was I wrong; they essentially abandoned their hardcore fanbase by making Ranger Mode a piece of DLC, or getting it “free” by preordering the game. (Hardcore mode, no HUD, limited ammo and so on.) The original Ranger Mode in Metro: 2033 was a free addition a couple of months after the launch, selling a game mode that had lots of praise as DLC on their next Metro game made me essentially lose all respect for 4A Games.
2013 wasn’t all that bad though, there was a particular game that surprised me.
The Stanley Parable
Is the name ringing any bells? Probably. Is there any way I could describe to you what the game is about in a way you would understand it? Absolutely not.
The Stanley Parable is essentially about a man named Stanley, he’s working in a company and has spent a good amount of years simply pressing the keys he was told to press, one day all of his co-workers are gone and there’s a guy narrating every action you make.
I really do mean you need to play the game for yourself to understand it, The narrator will try to tell you what Stanley is going to do. “Stanley faced 2 doors, he entered the door on the right.” Going either way leads to even more options, if you do as the narrator instructs, he will rant about how Stanley never made his own decisions, if you go the other way then he will tell Stanley he clearly knew he went through the wrong door. It gets more and more hilarious the further you go, but you will eventually reach an ending on the paths you chose.
The Stanley Parable is going to make you feel like you’re walking in an endless labyrinth, until you reach a dead end that will put you back to square one, a new path may open after your first ending, what would happen if you went the other way? Or stood still? Trying to make sense of the game will only give you a headache, there’s seriously no way a human being could make a game like this.
After putting a bunch of time into the game, it feels never-ending, it gets more and more ridiculous to the point of Spoiler, mark the text with your mouse to read: “The narrator will teleport you to Minecraft, tell you how amazing he is because he made a dirt house. Perhaps make you prevent a baby from going into fire by pressing a button, until you realize you can press the button until the end of time and the baby will still die as it walks into the fire after you’ve reset the button; followed by making you feel bad because you killed the baby. This is just one of the scenarios you could encounter.“
My brain already hurts by trying to explain how much creativity was put into this game, The Stanley Parable is a must have if you’re into any genre of PC Gaming. Seriously, even if you don’t like the game then you will still get an absolutely once in a lifetime experience in gaming. There’s no other game like it.