The Stanley Parable Review

This game is not worth $15. I thought this game would be upwards of 4-6 hours long. The game barely tells any story at all. Have I completely missed the point? I doubt it. The game is supposed to be a commentary about choices in video games. Frankly, I think The Walking Dead does a better job at taking to the player about choices than this game does. This is a tamer game that certainly has a goal of making you laugh, but lacks any sort of depth that you might expect if you had played a game like The Walking Dead prior to this one.

I read one review where the guy felt that he had wasted 2 hours and $15. I won’t disagree with the money part. The 2 hours that this game does offer (if even that much) is not wasted. It simply becomes very disappointing when you realize that the extent of the game is extremely small. I sort of felt that I had achieved something when I had unlocked the “making of” segment of the game, but that’s about it. The game may as well have 3 endings rather than 12 or so. While they are all different and unique, after you’ve seen about 3 or so, you don’t feel like there is really anything else to discover. If you’re looking for an open-ended game to explore, this is not it. That is sad, considering that the game is exploring the choice that you have in games. Even when you get the “true” ending for the game, the game doesn’t even let you explore this new area that you’ve encountered. It seems really lame.

I did a paper for a philosophy class in my college days. I talked about the potentiality of things. You can only do something that you have the potential to do. I can’t fly because I can’t fly. The game seems to give so little in the way of potential endings. For $15, I expect a bit more than what they offered. But let’s think about it in a different way. I could “fly” to New Jersey tomorrow if I wanted to, but it would be impractical. I would miss work and probably be fired. I would have to spend money that I shouldn’t be spending. The good thing is that, unlike real life, this game does reward the player for making a “wrong choice”. When I say “reward”, I mean the game’s narrator usually hates you for it.

But that’s part of the satire. You have to push through the narrator defying you or else you’ll keep ending the game with the easy ending. The subtle commentary regarding the choices that we have in video games is a nice change of pace, but I’d rather just play a game like The Walking Dead that truly tests my choices. In this game, I feel like I am just trying to find all of the endings rather than enjoy a game. That is the biggest problem with this game. Where it could have been a slightly engaging game with great wit, we get a lot of wit without the backbone that other games have. There’s no real substance. Until the game developers take any “Let’s Play” videos off of YouTube and such, I’d say not to buy the game and just enjoy it at a friend’s house or enjoy “watching” the game online.