Begin a journey through one of the most original first-person games of recent years.
User reviews: Mostly Positive (4,720 reviews)
Release Date: Feb 14, 2012

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Buy Dear Esther

Buy Dear Esther + Soundtrack

 

Recommended By Curators

"Is this even a game? I dont think so.... Its a very atmospheric experience though."

About This Game

“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.

Soundtrack

Jessica Curry's haunting and beautiful soundtrack to Dear Esther, now available on Steam, has been a hit with gamers and critics alike. Reviewers have said ""Curry's score reflects the player's feelings without oppressively instructing them. Exquisitely constructed, both sonically and visually" (Eurogamer), "as beautiful as the game is, it’d be remiss not to mention Curry’s atmospheric soundtrack...impossible to ignore." (Edge), "spellbinding, fascinating aural landscape: a resounding success" (Square Enix), "Curry's delicate & understated musical score achieves a level of excellence. It's the ultimate achievement of composition." (Bitgamer). The soundtrack was shortlisted for the Excellence in Audio award at the Independent Games Festival 2012

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X

    Minimum:

    • OS:Microsoft Windows XP / Vista / Vista64
    • Processor:Intel core 2 duo 2.4GHz or higher
    • Memory:1GB XP / 2GB Vista
    • Graphics:DirectX 9 compliant video card with Shader model 3.0 support. NVidia 7600, ATI X1600 or better (Pre-Sandybridge Intel graphics chipsets not yet supported)
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:2 GB HD space
    • Sound:DirectX 9.0c compatible sound card

    Recommended:

    • OS:Microsoft Windows XP / Vista / Vista64
    • Processor: Quad core 2.4GHz or higher
    • Memory:1GB XP / 2GB Vista
    • Graphics:DirectX 9 compliant video card with Shader model 3.0 support. NVidia 8800, ATI Radeon 2900 pro or better (Pre-Sandybridge Intel graphic chipsets not supported)
    • DirectX®:9.0c
    • Hard Drive:2 GB HD space
    • Sound:DirectX 9.0c compatible sound card
    • OS: MAC OS X 10.6.7 or higher
    • Processor: Intel Core Duo Processor (2GHz or better)
    • Memory: 2GB
    • Hard Disk Space: At least 2 GB of Space
    • Video Card: ATI Radeon 2400 or higher / NVIDIA 8600M or higher / Intel HD Graphics 3000
Helpful customer reviews
75 of 98 people (77%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: March 15
I love this game.
Why? Cause it's unusual. It's not like any other exploration/adventure game i've seen on steam.
You can compare it to book with missing pages and those pages that you have are not in order.
It was so beautiful in term of visual appearance and atmosphere back in 2012.

Dont buy if you are looking for any kind of action and can't spend few hours just walking around this island, slowly unfolding story.
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46 of 56 people (82%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: April 11
I really enjoyed Dear Esther. Whether it be the beautiful visuals, the powerful ambient music or the in-depth analysis into the human mind. Dear Esther has it all.

I was perplexed upon reaching The Caves, it's truly stunning at what can be achieved within the parameters of the Source engine.

I'd consider this as more of an artistic experience than a game. I found myself questioning so much during my playthrough and for that, I'm thankful for such a wonderful journey.
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17 of 26 people (65%) found this review helpful
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: June 24
Very boring, a true walking simulator.

You can do nothing but walk and walk; there are no enigmas or riddles (I expected that), and basically you walk on a closed and forced path that eventually leads you to the end. The plot is pretty sad and surely not entertaining, even though the voice acting is as remarkable as the visuals and the music.

I would recommend it to... none. There are games that try to create emotions, as Dear Esther does, without being this dramatic, sad and generally unappealing.

I wish there was more other than the melancholic voice of a hopeless character in this game; I reached the end in an hour, and I didn't enjoy it. The replayability is absent, except of course if you want to go through the game again.

Graphic: 7/10
Sound: 8/10
Gameplay: 4/10
Longevity: 2/10

Final Rating: 4/10

Dear Esther fails hard bringing emotions and a fresh breath among the first person adventures. Recommended only to game reviewers and developers. Definitely boring and not entertaining for the gamers.
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11 of 15 people (73%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: April 5
9/10 Best walking simulator I have ever played.

No need to run (not that you can), just enjoy a nice leisurely stroll around a deserted island. Game contains varied environments to appreciate. Savour the beautiful scenery while free roaming and exploring.

I deducted a point because of some narrator that kept interrupting my otherwise immersive walking experience.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 26
Work of Art or Complete Crap? On the one hand I love it divides opinion, focuses on storytelling and how it's trying something new. On the other hand I played 8 mins and got bored. Games at there heart are about interactivity, that's what makes them unique and what makes them the best storytelling form in my opinion. Dear Esther demonstrates what I think is the wrong way to make 'art games', art games should be about an individuals emotions or experiences, something personal. Tell a story through interactivity, if not, make a film.
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