The Stanley Parable is a first person exploration game. You will play as Stanley, and you will not play as Stanley. You will follow a story, you will not follow a story. You will have a choice, you will have no choice. The game will end, the game will never end.
Release Date: Oct 17, 2013

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July 13

The Stanley Parable Update Released

Yo! I've just pushed out an update to Stanley Parable! Here's the changelog:

  • Fixed cyrillic font issues
  • Fixed crash on startup on some Windows 8.1 computers
  • Added localization: Ukrainian, Turkish, Polish, German
  • Fixed Portuguese localization
  • (Edit) Updated choice PSA
  • R88888888888888

Please let me know if you run into any issues!

106 comments Read more


“It's not the fact that The Stanley Parable makes you think about the nature of choice in games that makes it extraordinary. It's the fact that it does so while simultaneously managing to be a wildly entertaining, hilarious, and surprising experience.”
9/10 - Gamespot

“It's this bouncing between serious tone and irreverence that makes The Stanley Parable so special. You never know what to expect."
10/10 - Joystiq

“Where so many games that aspire to be more than games end up less than any form of art, Stanley Parable strives, and then succeeds.”
10/10 - Destructoid

“Astoundingly labyrinthine onion-like layers of narrative tangents the player can embark on in what feels like the unholy interactive offspring of Inception, Being John Malkovich and Portal.”

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About This Game

The Stanley Parable is a first person exploration game. You will play as Stanley, and you will not play as Stanley. You will follow a story, you will not follow a story. You will have a choice, you will have no choice. The game will end, the game will never end. Contradiction follows contradiction, the rules of how games should work are broken, then broken again. This world was not made for you to understand.

But as you explore, slowly, meaning begins to arise, the paradoxes might start to make sense, perhaps you are powerful after all. The game is not here to fight you; it is inviting you to dance.

Based on the award-winning 2011 Source mod of the same name, The Stanley Parable returns with new content, new ideas, a fresh coat of visual paint, and the stunning voicework of Kevan Brighting. For a more complete and in-depth understanding of what The Stanley Parable is, please try out the free demo.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/8
    • Processor: 3.0 GHz P4, Dual Core 2.0 (or higher) or AMD64X2 (or higher)
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Video card must be 128 MB or more and should be a DirectX 9-compatible with support for Pixel Shader 2.0b (ATI Radeon X800 or higher / NVIDIA GeForce 7600 or higher / Intel HD Graphics 2000 or higher - *NOT* an Express graphics card).
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX 9.0c compatible
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.8 or higher required
    • Processor: 3.0 GHz P4, Dual Core 2.0 (or higher) or AMD64X2 (or higher)
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: ATI Radeon 2400 or higher / NVIDIA 8600M or higher
Helpful customer reviews
3,696 of 3,878 people (95%) found this review helpful
28.6 hrs on record
Posted: March 18
This is one of the best walking simulators I have ever played. You get to walk around and look at things while a man with a beautiful voice narrates your actions. Sometimes you get to click on things and he calls you an idiot. It reminds me of my mother.
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1,871 of 2,084 people (90%) found this review helpful
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: June 22
My computer crashed at one point during the game.

I thought that it was part of the game.

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1,429 of 1,604 people (89%) found this review helpful
2.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 12
This is a game about choice.

You can choose to not play it.

But you would be incorrect.
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1,173 of 1,342 people (87%) found this review helpful
7.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
Perfect piece of art, which could only been made with videogame mechanics. It's hard to explain and not to spoil everything. Just play the demo and if you like the humor - buy it.
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557 of 627 people (89%) found this review helpful
3.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 26, 2013
And so Stanley read the review with extraordinary joy. Not only because the reviewer was witty and clever, but also seemed like a handsome chap. Stanley decides to give the reviewer all his money. Stanley? Could you follow the story please?
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703 of 845 people (83%) found this review helpful
3.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013

The Stanley Parable began life as a mod for Half Life 2 and was recently updated and released on steam with achievements, more story branches and shiny new visuals. It places players in the mundane shoes of Stanley, a corporate desk jockey who is placed in an office in front of a computer where he punches buttons for a living. One day his monitor goes blank and the other corporate drones that he shares the office building with disappear and so begins your Journey as Stanley. Being the dull chap that he is, Stanley himself doesn't offer much ion the area of entertainment, but a charming English narrator provides the personality and humor necessary to make The Stanley Parable an enjoyable experience. The narrator provides player with instructions, becoming almost like a GPS device that has confused itself for a raconteur.

Where most games are about following the rules, The Stanley Parable is best enjoyed when breaking them. If the narrator says go right, you will certainly find more satisfaction in taking a left and listening as the narrator's knickers become twisted by your wanton disobedience. By taking these divergent paths you will find yourself faced with one of the game's 15 different conclusions. Each conclusion revels something a bit different about Stanley and they range from conspiratorial to surreal. The game plays a few tricks on you by repeating rooms endlessly or swapping out props on the fly truing an office into an apartment space. All of this is rendered in a simple and clean visual style. The color palette is muted to reflect just what a dull and miserable existence our pal Stanley has and the props are equally generic creating an appropriately stodgy atmosphere. As advertised the texture work adds far more detail than could be found in the original mod and overall the HD remix has much greater visual appeal.

So is The Stanley Parable a biting satire of the way in which modern games tell their story by allowing us to control a character on a predetermined path where deviation is punished? Is it a parody of the life of the average key punching office drone? Or, is it just an excuse to have a rather cheeky British man tell us what to do? The answer is that it's all of these... and none of them. It's a game that will give each of it's players a different take away. Each playthrough lasts between 15 minutes and a half hour. This doesn't sound like a lot of playtime, and it isn't but there is a tremendous degree of satisfaction in finding new ways to get the game to react to what you are or, in some cases, are not doing. Seeing all 15 endings without consulting a guide will probably take around 3 hours. These 15 endings are not Mass Effect 3 style endings either—they are wholly unique and there are a couple of treats for gamers to be uncovered. Ultimately, The Stanley Parable will not be everyone's cup of tea, but it holds a very special spot in the gaming landscape. It's a testament to satire and unconventional design as well as manipulating gamer's expectations. In short it's the antithesis of it's key punching dullard protagonist.
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192 of 208 people (92%) found this review helpful
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: June 20
The Stanley Parable is a really good meta-game. The game investigates the relationship and interaction between the character, the player (you), the narrator and the game developers. (Almost) The entire game is set in a dull Source-made office landscape, yet managed to keep my interest all along because of the intriguing and deceiving narration.

You can play through it in probably half an hour on your first go, but the game has tons of different endings, and you can approach the game in lots of different ways. I played it for roughly 2,5 hours, and I believe I got all the endings, or at least as many as I fancy for now.

Give it at go!
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1,090 of 1,379 people (79%) found this review helpful
14.0 hrs on record
Posted: April 11
I stayed in a broom closet for 5 minutes just so I could imagine myself being with the Narrator. Alone. With our clothes off.
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347 of 416 people (83%) found this review helpful
7.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
How to explain the Stanley Parable with out giving anything away... Well simple enought. Go play the Demo.
But keep in mind that the Demo is not the Demo from the game but rather the demo OF the game.
No,,, that doesn't work.. . . Wait I know! The Game is like the demo but its completly different .. ... No that does not work ether.... Perhaps.... Oh I know what can explain the game in one simple word, or number .... Yes number would be more appropriate!

8 . . . . 8 , 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8 . . . . .. Also this is an amazing work of art!
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408 of 533 people (77%) found this review helpful
27.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 28, 2013
The Stanley Parable is a ground-up remake of the cult Half-Life 2 mod and expands it in a dozen directions without altering its fundamentals. It is one of those "first-person walking" games in which you wander around a completely non-violent experience exploring the environment and unravelling the story, like Dear Esther.
You are Stanley, an office worker. Stanley has the job to push buttons on command until some day those commands abruptly stop. Stanley is leaving his desk to investigate, his actions are directed by a narrator who guides him through the office facility to discover the truth.
The Stanley Parable is a game about walking from A to B. As you approach a pair of doors, the narrator will indicate that Stanley takes the left one. Whether you do and how you decide to follow up your revolt or acquiescence, tilts the game towards wildly different conclusions. A playthrough may only take minutes, but The Stanley Parable has a lot of choices and a lot of different endings. It will take a few hours to see everything and every ending.
At each of the game's many intersections, you can follow the narrator's instruction or ignore it and face the consequences of your petty resistance. Each combination of choices leads to something unique. Some of these "endings" are lighthearted, some are absurd and many centre around the narrator's attempts to get back to his story.
The Stanley Parable has not the best Source Engine graphics. Many of the environments are bland, but deliberately so. Delightful hidden details show their faces everywhere if you are willing to look.
The best part of The Stanley Parable is the voice acting of the omnipotent Narrator. He plays witness to every move which do you make. From a kindly, yet firm, guiding hand at the start of the game to an acerbic wit if you ignore him, the Narrator really adds a soul to the world of The Stanley Parable.
I enjoyed the game and I would recommend the game to people who want to try out something different instead of the normal games, but I would advice everyone to try out The Stanley Parable Demo before buying the game. It will tell you nothing about the main game, but you should then be able to decide if the game is something for you or not.
If you should still be unsure, you can also try the free mod, to make your final decision. The mod does not actually require Half-Life 2 on PC, only the Source SDK.

Sounds 8/10
Graphics 5/10
Gameplay 3/10
Atmosphere 8/10
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380 of 504 people (75%) found this review helpful
4.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
This short review/analysis contains spoilers about the game. Stop reading if you want to have a fresh experience with the game. Everything below is my speculation, don't take them as definitive facts.
The Stanley Parable is everything and beyond video games. It's a giant commentary on todays game development philosophy. Throughout its unexpected span and twisty narrative, it has a clear message - there are problems with narrative in video games, which we have not addressed yet.
In recent years we have seen a great amount of open world/sand box games. But there hasn't been shortage in linear games with strict control over players actions. Invisible walls or direct threatening by the game if you go off the map, even in scenarios where the level design suggests more freedom than the available and, but not limited to - bugging out the whole game or level by reaching unexpected locations are common practices in multiplayer and even in singleplayer games since decades.
The layout of the office (which is briefly explained in the museum, behind the scenes room) is designed and created with the mind that the dialogue and attention span of the player would balance and lead to the first sense of conflict - the two doors.
This first dilemma is presented geniously - with a confident and calm voice. At this point the narrator is still following the hardcoded written script. Which is what I describe as the main and simple story the whole Stanely Parable is based around - there is a problem, the protagonist decides to end the tyranny of the evil force and it concludes with a happy ending.
The simple story has cartoonish elements. Toward the end of it, it cultivates exaggerated tone and willingly becomes boring, it's purpose is to show the most basic and at the same time intriguing story. But only if the player obeys/follows the steps the given by the narrator.
Not obeying the narrative, leads to all sorts of interesting results, which ultimately don't explain the whole picture of The Stanley Parable, which is left to players imagination. The game doesn't feel the need to address any of the questions which the audience asks frantically after playing it. The same happened in the demonstration, particularly in the 'Escape elevator' sequence.
Throughout the exploration/ending hunting there are many sections where the nature of narration and design in games is examined and often made fun out of.
Many actions, which are not part of the hardcoded script, of the player are directly commentated by the narrator.
Like the 'Broom closet' - this room has no place in the whole game. In traditional game narrative it would be a waste of time - there isn't a collectable or extra life and if the player decides to explore it, the game would punish him for doing so. But here, the comedic nature of TSP rewards the player for paying attention to it, even if it is only a piece of dialogue.
Achievements are another device with which the The Stanley Parable mocks the current video game industry. Take the 'Click on door 430 five times' for example - a great way to address the ridiculous amount of pointless achievements in some games. Or 'Unachievable' - an obvious phantom which doesn't have a solution. It is created solely that particular part of the player audience grinds through the game, desperately trying to get it.
So, how does The Stanley Parable get away with being so rude to every aspect in the modern video game industry, while being part of it?
Its complete and constant self awareness makes TSP simply perfect. It is written and executed exceptionally well. It deflects most of the criticism, directed at it, simply by being one.
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551 of 759 people (73%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
Mind-blowing piece of art. Amazing voice acting. The demo alone is more entertaining the majority of AAA titles.

Definitely a must buy.
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570 of 808 people (71%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 7
This is a good review.
And now you will click in order to like this review.

Thank you
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262 of 357 people (73%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 29, 2013
Stop whatever you're doing now and buy this piece of art.
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45 of 45 people (100%) found this review helpful
15.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 18
This game has no objectives or enemies or puzzles but it does have a deep emotional story about who Stanley is and where he is, you will have to find out for yourself. I think that covers The Stanley Parable review.
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42 of 44 people (95%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 10
Only game I've ever played where I've been perfectly happy to voluntarily sit in a broom closet for 10 minutes.
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76 of 98 people (78%) found this review helpful
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 20, 2013
I've been playing games for many a year now and many of these games have had lines in them. Many games have had truly great lines in them. Who could forget that one to the left of the web on Tempest? The one that stretches out from the explosion in Minestorm? Ah, the beautiful lines that you crash your bike into in a game of Light Cycles. They were good lines. And as time went past, games got more lines. Then one day we decided that lines weren't enough and we had some triangles and we put the triangles together and we made videogames with triangles instead of dots and instead of lines and oh, what did we lose? But it was OK because then lines came back into fashion around 2006 and they sort of glowed too. Glowy lines! We made games with glowy lines and the lines in those games were great too. I didn't like the green ones so much in Geometry Wars but they were trying y'know?

Years and years of great lines and yet, it took until 2013 for us to get THE BEST LINE. Ladies and everyone else out there, The Adventure Line is the best line in all of videogames. Let us take a moment to let that sink in. The. Adventure. Line.

The Adventure Line is the best line. Sing it from the rooftops because this is -the- Oscar worthy line performances, the BAFTA of road markings, the Laurence Olivier award of yellow. Thank you, Adventure Line. You're amazing. Just great.
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117 of 165 people (71%) found this review helpful
6.3 hrs on record
Posted: May 18
This is a Story of a man name William. William heard about a mod called The Stanley Parable for Hal life 2. William picked up the mod and had fun. When William heard about the game on steam. He was so delighted that he bought the game right away. Too describe this game is impossbile. William wrote a review for the game that he thoought was clever.
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67 of 87 people (77%) found this review helpful
7.0 hrs on record
Posted: January 20
I absolutely love the broom closet ending.
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80 of 114 people (70%) found this review helpful
10.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
Oh my land, is this game something.
It's definitely something, that's for sure.
and that definitely something is great!
Loved this game in the free version, love it now.
Great endings, great (secret) endings and just a great overall atmosphere.
Buy it if you want to experience The Stanley Parable in all it's glory.
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