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Best PC Exclusive 2013

Posted on Thursday, December 19 @ 07:36:42 PST by Paul_Tamburro

The Stanley Parable – Best PC Exclusive 2013

Platform: PC
Developer: Galactic Café
The Stanley Parable, or as it is sometimes known “That Shitty Walking Simulator That’s Not Even a REAL GAME," is a game in which you control a man who gets up from his desk one day to discover that his co-workers are curiously absent from his workplace. While on his way to discovering where they are, his every movement is described by the witty Narrator, who is equal measures charming and sociopathic. The whole game is driven by British actor Kevan Brighting’s performance, who provides the voiceover for the Narrator and who, in the game’s short runtime, easily and masterfully propels the character into the list of gaming’s all-time great antagonists, if you can really call him that—depending upon which path you choose to take through the game, the Narrator can either be your friendly storytelling chum or a sneering and condescending authoritarian.

The Narrator’s amusing yet unsettling dialogue is a large portion of what makes The Stanley Parable our PC game of the year, but that it features in such an accomplished and thought-provoking narrative helps a lot too. In a year where we were asked to wrap our heads around mind-boggling multiverse theories in BioShock Infinite, that The Stanley Parable is arguably the most philosophically challenging game of 2013 is no small feat. Player agency hasn’t been questioned so efficiently since, well, the original BioShock, but not only does it cause you to ponder your free will in video games, it leaves you questioning your freedom in reality, too. I’m unsure whether developer Galactic Café believes in determinism, but The Stanley Parable is one of the greatest examples of it in modern media, and its proposal that you are no more in control of your own life than you are pressing ‘W’ to move Stanley through a corridor makes The Stanley Parable a confrontational, engrossing experience.

Runners Up: View all of our Best of 2013 Award Winners here>>
Tags:   Best of GR

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