If you click on a link and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Learn more.

The Beauty Of The Barren: Dear Esther

The fancy-dan version of Source-based island adventure Dear Esther causes ripples of excitement whenever it raises its haunted head, nowhere more so in recent times than at the IGF where it has received four nominations. However, there are important matters to take care of before its Valentine's Day release. To that end, I have prepared several boxes so that we can put our heads together and decide which one Dear Esther belongs in. Perhaps a trailer will help us to choose?

Before placing your eyes all over the video below, observe these boxes. The first is a shimmering thing whose edges are ever-shifting and ill-defined. It says 'Game' on its topmost surface, when that bothers to exist. The next container is constructed of cogs and valves - a collection of rivets spell out the words 'Modified Mod'. The third carries a plaque reading 'Interactive Art Journey'. It's less of a box and more of an experience. And then there's a matchbox that someone has written 'Un-game' on in Crayola. The sounds of scripted terrorism blare from within.

It is imperative that Dear Esther be placed in one of these containers as soon as possible.

I am building a box out of smiles and the spoken word, then writing 'lovely things' on the side.

Join the Rock Paper Shotgun supporter program

Sign up today and get access to more articles like these, an ad-free reading experience, free gifts, and help us create more great writing about PC games.

See more information


We love having a friendly, positive and constructive community - you lot are great - and we want to keep it like that. Our main commenting rule is "be excellent to each other". Please see our code of conduct, where you can find out what "be excellent" means. TL;DR? Respect others, think before you post, and be prepared for puns.

More News

Latest Articles