Dear Esther, Proteus, and Journey: Are These Truly "Games?"

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burntham77

Journey was an amazing experience, but it was closer to listening to classical music than anything else. It was a video game, sure, but you didn't play it as much as you moved through it.

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flyup

I've played Dear Esther several times. The soundtrack and voice acting are premium. The entire experience is provoking. If you don't like this game you are a mouth-breather and I don't want anything to do with you.

If you don't like Dear Esther you are the reason AAA titles have death counts and glorify violence. If you don't like Dear Esther you are the reason we are constantly slaying dragons in Tolkien's world.

If you don't like Dear Esther- you are the reason why games suck.

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vrmlbasic

I disagree.

I've played many AAA titles without death counts. There are AAA games that glorify non-violence as well, and I've played them.

I'd test out Dear Esther but I'm not going to plunk down cash for it until I've tested it out...

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jgottberg

I got it on Steam for $2.50 - I'm not sure if that's still the price but IMO, it's well worth it. Not a bad entry fee.

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Ilander

Dear Esther was great. I played through it once, was entirely satisfied with my purchase, and that was that. I may revisit it, in time, like one rereads a cherished book.

As to whether it was a game...well, it was. The game was to continue. If you continue, you get more of the story. That's it. It's a simple game, but you do invest time, even strategy (of sorts) in how you interact with it. Just not by clicking and pointing and shooting and scoring.

The dividing line for me is interactivity. Minecraft was fine before it had an "Ending," and no one debates that it's a game. Second Life is a game.

It's all about exercising our minds in an interactive way.

So, I guess I'll check out Proteus...in time, I have too many games to play first.

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Led Weappelin

I enjoyed the look and over all feel of Dear Esther. It was like reading an interactive book in a way. No, Dear Esther is not a game. It's a trip. And I'd gladly take another if done that well.

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jgottberg

I could see taking a few rips and then sitting back to enjoy the scenery but that's about it.

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jgottberg

I don't know if it's kosher to reply to one's own post but felt compelled after buying Dear Esther this AM on Steam. I have to say, my expectations were set extremely low given the review in this piece. Glad to say, I loved the game so far. I'm about an hour in and love the scenery, the narration and just the adventurous feel of exploring this place. Well worth the money, IMO - even if I had to pay full-price ($10).

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Crackalackin

Dear Esther was a waste of money.

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vrmlbasic

You're asserting that because it has the "craftsmanship" of a game but not the "purpose" of a game then it is a game? That doesn't compute in my book as it is like saying that a non-functional replica of something should be considered equal to what it apes.

Amazon keeps trying to get me to buy the replica phaser for Star Trek Into Darkness. By your logic, that's just as much of a phaser as the in-universe device.

BTW perhaps we did not have this "discussion" about "what constitutes a game" for RPGs and shooters because they fulfill both the "purpose" and "craftsmanship" of a game. The column invites this obvious line of criticism but yet doesn't really deflect/counter it...

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Blackheart-1220

these games would make really good screensavers

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chop_slap

I concur...these just seem like cute glorified screensavers you can download, but without the malware.

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wazkatango

This is such a reactionary article. We know you're upset Thomas, but the rest of us shouldn't be required to care about how you feel unless this is a popular and repeated issue. In other words, LOL DEAR ESTHER ISN'T A GAME.

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