Third party DRM: SteamThis game requires a free Steam account to play.
"One of the most haunting and well-executed titles of this or any other generation." - StrategyInformer.com
"A trip through a brilliantly conceived landscape that rewards attentive engagement with a moving story." - PCgamer.com
“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.
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.
Is it a game or an digital installation?Mandemon | March 5, 2014 | See all Mandemon's reviews »
This "game", yes in quotes, is quite divisive. To some, it's a masterwork, a true show that the video games can be "art".
On the other hand, there are cases like me, who look at this program and say "This is not a game. It's a digital installation." The program is quite similar to art installations, except it's digital. The game has no goal really, you just walk around, listening to narrator talking whenever you find something that triggers a voice clip.
Some people feel. Some, like me, do not.
Graphics wise the game looks good and that is pretty much all you can say. It's pretty. That is something everyone can agree on.
However, despite not really offering anything, it did give us something great. It opened the door to games like Stanley Parable and Gone Home. As such, this program works better as a piece of history, a milestone, than something to enjoy. As a game, as an entertainment value, well, I gave you two games. Check those out. I can only recommend this program as a piece of history.
Where art and games collideTraldera | Feb. 22, 2014 | See all Traldera's reviews »
Do not have any illusions about this game, it is not an action game, or a puzzler, or an RPG. You simply 'walk' around the game, observing the world around you. Now, this does sound incredibly boring, and I suppose if you want a hardcore gaming experience, it is. However this game is not meant to be for the hardcore players, it is for those that want something a bit different. The world is immensely detailed and beautiful, capable of telling a story through nothing more than visuals and a character narration. Although the world is limited in movement (essentially corridors), you don't notice as you are directed along paths you would normally take anyway. Where lesser games place invisible walls this game places rock formations or walkway fences. You do not feel restricted as you navigate the world. This game is a work of art, with a lovely story and music to complement it. If you're looking for something different to fill an evening, get this game. You won't be disappointed.
A story that transcends reality ....soura1993 | Feb. 22, 2014 | See all soura1993's reviews »
This game will take the explorer to another planet ... well according to me it's not a game ... it's not the traditional "shoot and run" .... but a story ... which is far beyond of our expectations !!!! Here the only equipment is a torch ... You will explore the lonely but large island and the only living person is you .. u will trust only the sound of the wind and the sea and the fragments of memory ... the characters "Esther" , "Donnelly" ..their true story will get blurred as the story progresses... And the amazing music and and the Environment,the sea ,the hills,the lighthouse ...will blow your mind.... This is another way of storytelling, a must play game !!!!!
Gorgeous but dullArteus | Feb. 21, 2014 | See all Arteus's reviews »
Dear Esther is a game I was really looking forward to at first but ended up letting me down in the end. While the environments are beautiful in places the gameplay just isn't there at all. While I find the term "walking simulator" a bit overused nowadays I just can't say it doesn't apply here. You walk around and listen to the narration as you do so. There's very little in the way of exploration, I spent a good amount of time thoroughly exploring every single bit of the maps and got nothing out of it. It doesn't help that you walk at a snail's pace and doing said exploration just wastes even more of your time because of the trip back to the main path.
My score is based almost entirely on how beautiful some of the environments are and how cheap the game tends to get during sales. If you feel like checking out some pretty environments it wouldn't be a bad purchase if you find it for a couple of dollars. Don't buy it if you're looking for anything more than an interactive (if that) story though.
A brave step forward for video gamesElfangorax | Jan. 23, 2014 | See all Elfangorax's reviews »
As you will likely have read elsewhere, Dear Esther really stretches the notion of what is traditionally called "a game." This is a very good thing. This work is a real boon to the argument that video games can and should be considered a form of art. It is anything but pedestrian, and that is what makes it so special and so well loved.
Dear Esther is visually astounding. Journey deep into the island's caves and you will be utterly in awe of the beauty therein. The music is also noteworthy, always appropriate in intensity for the situation, and never overwhelming it. The semi-randomised narration contributes significantly to the player's emotional state while traversing the island. His rantings and musings, his rage and his despair, all help lend colour to the landscape, and keep the player firmly rooted in the world before them.
Whether you would define Dear Esther as a game or not, it is without a doubt an experience you will not regret.