Dear Esther

Dear Esther on PC screenshot #1
Dear Esther on PC screenshot #2
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Third party DRM: Steam

This game requires a free Steam account to play.


"One of the most haunting and well-executed titles of this or any other generation." -

"A trip through a brilliantly conceived landscape that rewards attentive engagement with a moving story." -

“A deserted island…a lost man…memories of a fatal crash…a book written by a dying explorer.”

Two years in the making, the highly anticipated Indie remake of the cult mod Dear Esther arrives on PC. Dear Esther immerses you in a stunningly realised world, a remote and desolate island somewhere in the outer Hebrides. As you step forwards, a voice begins to read fragments of a letter: "Dear Esther..." - and so begins a journey through one of the most original first-person games of recent years. Abandoning traditional gameplay for a pure story-driven experience, Dear Esther fuses its beautiful environments with a breathtaking soundtrack to tell a powerful story of love, loss, guilt and redemption.

Forget the normal rules of play; if nothing seems real here, it’s because it may just be all a delusion. What is the significance of the aerial -- What happened on the motorway -- is the island real or imagined -- who is Esther and why has she chosen to summon you here? The answers are out there, on the lost beach, the windswept cliffs and buried in the darkness of the tunnels beneath the island… Or then again, they may just not be, after all…

Dear Esther is supported by Indie Fund.

Key Features:

  • Every play-through a unique experience, with randomly generated audio, visuals and events.

  • Explore Incredible environments that push the Source engine to new levels of beauty.

  • A poetic, semi-randomised story like you've never experienced in a game before.

  • Stunning soundtrack featuring world-class musicians.

  • An uncompromisingly inventive game delivered to the highest AAA standards.

Customer reviews


More of a story

Venhiem | Jan. 7, 2015 | See all Venhiem's reviews »

This isn't really a game. More like a story that you walk through. You can call it a walking simulator.
The graphics are very good. Not excellent, but fitting.
The story is also very good. That is what this game is: just a story.
The dialogue and sounds are good. The narrator just babbles random stuff at you mostly.
The gameplay sucks. No jump, run, punch, anything. Just walk and walk and walk. I'd recommend it only if you know what you're getting. Also, know that you could probably just watch a let’s play of it and get the same experience, if not better, since it'd be free.


Well ... you can trudge around and look at stuff.

mushclone298 | Oct. 26, 2014 | See all mushclone298's reviews »

Story: 20/25 Gameplay: 10/25 Graphics: 23/25 Sound: 20/25 Well, I thought I was reviewing a game. But ... a game let's you do stuff. This is more of a non-interactive story. Speaking of story, it's pretty good. If only the narrator didn't speak in a monologue every few minutes. It's very good, just too wordy, which means most of today's audience won't care enough to listen to it. The gameplay is ... trudging. It would appear at first that you could explore this island, but you can't, gotta follow the path. Not sure why you would want to explore anyway cause the guy walks as slow ... as ... balls. But look pretty stuff. The graphics are actually pretty good. Very nice and depressing with ghosts that freak you out at first. The sound is done very nicely too. All in all, what the hell did I just "play"?


Mixed Feelings

emptyhaven | Oct. 20, 2014 | See all emptyhaven's reviews »

I really like good stories. I really, really like good and well written stories. Games like To the Moon draw me in because the story engages me and puts me in a world I can understand.

Dear Esther is also a good story, but I don't know if I wanted to play through the story as I did, or if I would have preferred reading it in a book. Sometimes, one form doesn't do as well as another, and finding the right medium for a story can be tricky.

What works for this game is that the first-person perspective attempts to immerse you in the world, making the experience seem more urgent to your senses. The story, in a way, becomes yours, or at least the persona you project onto the avatar you control. Dear Esther drives you through the story, hoping the story drives you in even further. If this was its purpose, then I can rate it well, considering it fulfilled its purpose with me.

Overall, I think it is worth a try. You might not like it and say that it lacks proper gameplay aspects, and I will say, in its defense, that you should listen to the story and stop reading too much into the "game" aspect.


Non-Interactive story

Oktarnash | Sept. 26, 2014 | See all Oktarnash's reviews »

Very small game, I believe it is around either 1 hour or 2 hours long, and all you have to do is press W, and move the mouse, really they should have removed movement controls, and just let you pause when you want to observe. I would say don't get this, but some people will. Although I would say just go watch a TV show, it will at least give you move bang for you time.


Do YOU think that this is a game?

therealBIGdeal | Sept. 25, 2014 | See all therealBIGdeal's reviews »

I don't believe that Dear Esther is a game in the normal sense. It doesn't have roguelike elements, it's not a top down shooter, and there is little to no player interaction. You simply walk, and listen. For a game that has very limited gameplay, the world seems very beautiful. In fact, the most disappointing thing about the game was the lack of exploration available to the player. I would love to be able to go to the grim and gray beach, or climb the foggy peak.

If reading and casual gaming are your cup of tea, then this game will most likely appeal to you. It has a good story that is simple to follow and have a nice length. However, if your preferred games are Skyrim and DOOM 3, look away. You have to approach this game with a certain mindset to get a satisfying experience.