The Stanley Parable

Developer(s): Davey Wreden; Galactic Cafe

Designer(s): William Pugh; Davey Wreden

Writer (s): Davey Wreden; William Pugh

Narrator: Kevan Brighting

Composer(s): Blake Robinson; Yiannis Ioannides; Christiaan Bakker

Engine: Source

 

Original Release: 27th July, 2011

“Nihilistic Daydream” is probably what describes The Stanley Parable the best. We follow our faceless office worker “Stanley” and the Narrator as Stanley discovers everybody in his office building has mysteriously disappeared. The Narrator explains Stanley’s day to day life, he goes to work and presses buttons as he is told to. The Narrator explains that Stanley is perfectly fine doing exactly as he is told. This is a game of choice, the narrator taunts the player, stating they don’t have free choice over their actions or thoughts.

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Undertale: Friendship is Magic

Developer: Toby Fox

Engine: Gamemaker: Studio

Release Date: 15 September 2015

Undertale is a role playing video game created on Gamemaker: Studio, the same engine I am using for my game. It uses a birds-eye or top-down perspective, which gives a nice depth to the game and plays a big part in the puzzles throughout the game. Despite having relatively simple style and game play, this makes it easily accessible and puts more value on the story line.

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Game Thoughts Pt. 1

So, for my game that I’m making as part of my digital design course the scariest thing about the brief was making a game that had VALUE. I really struggled to find games that had value, a.k.a things like diversity, safety, gender equality, trust, justice etc. that I enjoyed playing. We were shown games like Layoff and Against All Odds by Games For Change, which both had great messages about humanity but were short- lived and not as involving as other games.

The games I found most interesting were games like Undertale, The Walking Dead and Night in the Woods (all of which I reviewed). They all had strong narratives and very 3 dimensional characters. This is what I wanted to re-create in my 2D platformer, I don’t know how, but personally, these games are the ones that have the most value to me.

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Papers, Please

Welcome to Arstotzka!

A Communist state that has ended its six year war with a neighboring country Kolechia, somewhere around 1981-1982. You have been chosen to be the Inspector at the new border checkpoint opening up in Grestin, a border town that is the centre of the volatile relationship between Kolechians and Arstotzkians. West Grestin is Kolechian and East Grestin is Arstotzkian. There are other countries too, Antegria, Impor, Obristan, Republia and United Federation.

This is the set-up for the game and, you might be excited for a game that ominously mirrors, perhaps, Berlin in 1961. This is also a well-timed game: it was released in August 2013- coinciding with the trade blockade against Ukraine in retaliation for the possible signing of an association agreement with the EU and as social and political unrest has begun creating barriers in our current society.

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Metroid: Zero Mission

 

Metroid: Zero Fusion is the revamped version of the original Metroid Game from 1986. The game mechanics and use of visual space is completely upgraded, while also keeping the nostalgia of the original. I played this is 2005, a year after the release on GameBoy Advance. Since we are revisiting 2D Platformers for our Game Design assignment, I thought this particular game would be interesting, for its design but also for its history.

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Vladimir Propp’s List

Propp suggests that there are 8 different character types in a story:

  • Protagonist
  • Antagonist
  • Dispatcher
  • Donor
  • Helper
  • Person-sought-for (Princess)
  • False Protagonist

Supporting Characters:

  • Family Members
  • Connectors

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The Walking Dead: The Complete First Season Review

The Walking Dead, one of my favourite HBO TV series released an interactive survival horror video game developed and published by Telltale Games in 2012. This game is based on the original graphic novels by Robert Kirkman and it hints to the TV Series main storyline. The game is played in five episodes and is the story of Lee Everett, a criminal who was on his way to jail as the outbreak hit.

The game has a strong narrative, which you follow playing as Lee as he interacts which other survivors; families, orphans and lone wolves. The Walking Dead hits the player hard where one would not expect unless you had read the comics or watched the series – it confronts with moral and ethical decisions that are made in a split second and then makes the player responsible for those decisions. If you are playing for gore and blood, then look elsewhere. Sure, it has its moments of horror because that is the genre, but that is not the focus of the game nor is it the highlight.

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