The Stanley Parable is a single-player exploration game available for purchase on Steam for USD 14.99.
- Difficulty: Easy
- Gameplay Score: 3.5/5
- Graphics Score: 3/5
- Music: Not much music. Dialogue would be a 4/5 though.
It features a main character named Stanley that the player controls. Depending on whether you obey or disobey, the ending to your Stanley Parable will be different. The controls are a simple WASD that allows you to move around and explore the setting, guided by the disembodied voice of the narrator. You will find yourself curious about the twists and turns of the nondescript office building and this desire to know more, fuels the constant replay of the same choices over and over again…
In the beginning, the game was intriguing. The dialogue from the narrator was condescending but I thought it was hilarious and found myself responding to his dialogue through the choices I made. At one point he pissed me off enough that I refused to listen to any of his directions and that gave me a rather interesting ending. That is, in my opinion, the essence of the Stanley Parable: making a decision whether to obey or disobey. In a way, the game challenges not only the existence of Stanley but it also forces you to consider how your own life is similar to the way this game is played. It is at once both unnerving and impressive that a game can force so much philosophical, existential dogma down your throat while you listen to the same intro time and time again.
I have played through every single ending and my personal favourite is the confusion ending. Why? I would recommend you to find out yourself. The game is easy to play but requires patience and a healthy dose of curiosity. I have found that my friends either hate it or love it.
I personally enjoyed finding all the different endings and to see which one I liked best. That being said, the frustration and mental exhaustion is real. Never has a game actually made me feel so mentally exhausted due to repetition and tedium. While the narrator was hilarious, his dialogue got more and more irritating as I got more tired. I would highly recommend to not play and finish this game in one sitting. If you are someone who loves to explore and seek out the unknown then I would highly suggest you try this game out. If you are someone who is impatient and needs instant gratification then you may struggle with this game.
Overall, a great game and fantastic voice acting. The graphics are decent and the gameplay is pretty fun (in small doses). Below are some interesting, wtf captures of this fantastic game: