trò chơi Info
Platkhung Win, PS4
Publisher The Astronauts
Developer The Astronauts
Release Date Sep 26, 2014

Its story — a fairly simple blover of horror, mystery and human drama — could certainly be told in a book or a movie. Variations on it already have sầu been. But in any other format, something of utmost importance lớn the formula would be missing: immersion.

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That"s not a buzzword I use lightly, but it is key to The Vanishing of Ethan Carter. This is a game that pulls you inlớn its world in an almost literal way. Being a part of the unfolding narrative and having the agency to lớn explore it & piece it together at your own pace is essential, building an experience that could only be pulled off this successfully as a video clip game.

In both its narrative và its gameplay, Ethan Carter refuses to hold your hand

As The Vanishing of Ethan Carter begins, you step into lớn the shoes of Paul Prospero, a psychic detective who has been summoned khổng lồ a quiet riverside town khổng lồ search for a missing boy — the eponymous Ethan Carter. Prospero must explore the town và its surrounding countryside, gathering evidence & piecing together what horrific scenes have happened leading lớn Ethan"s disappearance.

In both its narrative sầu & in its gameplay, The Vanishing of Ethan Carter refuses to hold your hvà. From the moment you enter the Red Creek Valley area via a dark train tunnel, you"re on your own, miễn phí to explore at your own pace, with pretty much every area opened up from the start.

The key khổng lồ actually progressing through the story lies in solving a series of around 10 individual puzzles. But if you want to lớn totally ignore those and dash right to lớn the final area from the start, that is possible. You won"t get an ending until you go bachồng and complete each of the puzzles, but again, the game isn"t going to lớn tell you where to lớn go or force you lớn follow a set path.

That freedom was more than a little intimidating at first, but the more time I spent with The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, the better I was able to read the environmental cues pointing me toward each new puzzle. The open nature of the game was a double-edged sword; it meant that I took my time exploring the game thoroughly và grew incredibly familiar with this beautifully crafted location, but it also meant that I spent a lot of time backtracking at the protagonist"s not-terribly-fast pace.

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My reward for the backtracking was more than worth it, though. Ethan Carter"s puzzles are never terribly complicated, but I found satisfaction in slowly figuring out how khổng lồ bởi vì them. Again, since this is a game that has no tutorials, the puzzles can appear obscure at first. There"s never going to be a tooltip lớn walk you through a solution. So while the answer might be easy, the challenge is in the process of figuring out how to lớn arrive sầu at that answer; và it was a challenge that I enjoyed unraveling each time.


It"s no surprise that developer The Astronauts would want players lớn focus on the surroundings. Though it has the soul of a low-budget indie game — no combat, a simple, soft-spoken plot, etc. — The Vanishing of Ethan Carter has the looks of a modern triple-A release. The game world isn"t massive sầu, but it is detailed to an almost absurd degree. This also means it can be a resource hog for many computers. However, it"s worth cranking the settings up as high as your PC will allow; every inch of this world has been placed with meticulous, loving detail, and it all added khổng lồ the sense of place that built as I worked toward solving the mystery.

That mystery is itself wonderful and taut. It"s a kind of restrained storytelling that"s sure khổng lồ leave sầu some players frustrated by the matter-of-factness of the answers waiting at the end. For me, I was impressed by an attention lớn detail that matched the world of the game. Every single piece of dialogue, every scrap of paper, every tiny clue exists for a reason. All of it fits together into a tight plot that left me emotionally drained even as I marveled at its simpliđô thị.

Wrap Up: The Vanishing of Ethan Carter tells the kind of story that works best in a game

There"s more to lớn The Vanishing of Ethan Carter that I"ve omitted for fear of spoiling the game"s best surprises, but I will say that each of these moments is inextricably tied to lớn the method this story is being told in — that is, as a video game. It is evidence of a kind of narrative sầu that games can bởi better than anything else, as well as proof that games can work with a story that doesn"t need to be overblown or exaggerated — main character"s paranormal powers aside. If you have sầu the three or four hours to lớn devote to it & care about the future of games as a storytelling medium, Ethan Carter is must-play.

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The Vanishing of Ethan Carter was reviewed using final downloadable code purchased by staff. You can find additional information on"s ethics policy here.