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.
User reviews: Very Positive (21,865 reviews) - 91% of the 21,865 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Oct 17, 2013

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“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, zippity zop 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

Mac OS X
    • 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).
    • Storage: 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
280 of 302 people (93%) found this review helpful
25 people found this review funny
25.8 hrs on record
Posted: September 8, 2015
The Stanley Parable is a one of a kind game. You play as Stanley, an employee that has to press buttons. When suddenly, you stop and head out your office. A narrator describes your adventure and it's up to you to listen to him or not. Explore the office building and make different choices every playthrough and unlock all of the many endings possible!

The Pros:
  • Beautiful - The graphics are decent, the lightning glorious, and walking through the building is pleasant to the eye.

  • Choices - The best thing a game can do for you is let you be in control. The Stanley Parable makes you make your own story, every step of the way, and unlocking a different ending every time. Such decisions include taking the left or right door, going to the meeting or not, or turning off the evil machine... or not. Every action has a thing to say for the ending.

  • Comical - The narrator says things that are sometimes very funny, the way he reacts when you disobey him and the scenes you encounter have some very rich monologue.

  • Deep - It might not look like this the first time you play, but as you uncover different endings you will see the hidden meaning behind Stanley's story. The writing is very cleverly done, the existance of the narrator poses further questions, and the very nature of reality bends amongst different endings.

The Cons:
  • Repetitive up to a point - As the story forks at different intersections, you are bound to repeat parts of it until you reach the branching point. Some of the paths require waiting for long narrations to play, so you might become a little impatient along the process.

  • Unconventional Achievements - Most achievements require a degree of witt to figure out what they want (or read a guide) but there are some that are really unnecessary, such as playing the game for the entire duration of a Tuesday, implying either BIOS Time Changing or leaving the PC idle for 24 hours, the Unachiveable, which requires configuration file tweaks and the Go Outside which makes you not play for... 5 years. Of course, circumventable with a little sly techniques, but they are not achievements related to the game. They don't track progress or skill, they're just there to mess with you and waste your time.

The Stanley Parable stand out amongst the rest of pshycological narratives and really puts the player in a position of power over his destiny, or at least gives him a very powerful delusion about it. Buy with confidence, it is an enjoyable experience.

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103 of 115 people (90%) found this review helpful
53 people found this review funny
2.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 21, 2015
Narrator: "Stanley was fascinated about reading reviews. On this particular day, a new review showed up on his news feed. Stanley got excited. Without hesitation, Stanley began to read it."

Narrator: "Sorry, I said, without hesitation, Stanley began to read it."

Narrator: "Ahem. Without hesitation, Stanley began to read it."


The Stanley Parable is an odd one partly because it is, in essence, a first-person walking simulator with minimal “gameplay” in it. So, does it qualify as a game? Not in the traditional sense, that is certain. So what is the catch then?

Unlike other walking simulators you would find around, The Stanley Parable's gimmick is its narrative-driven "gameplay", so to speak. Taking the role of Stanley Parable, you find yourself alone at your desk in the office until one day when the computer screen turns blank and all your colleagues mysteriously vanish. At this point, you begin to follow The Narrator’s voice which “guides” you through the complex by narrating what Stanley would have done in the first place.

But this is where the game shines and, arguably, distinguishes itself from other dull walking simulators. If you remember how games nowadays (maybe even in the past) boast about how they provide the player with choices and consequences which in reality are all just an illusion, then The Stanley Parable showcases and criticises the nature of those narrative constructions in video games. You are given various opportunities to not do what the voice tells you to do which leads to a range of interesting, but twisted events and endings - some are peculiar, some are rather sad and others are hilarious. During each ending though, the playthrough resets and takes you right back from the start where from there on it is up to you to do whatever you want, once again. Whilst this might seem weird, maybe even underwhelming since you begin to think that you just completed the “game”, in fact it is all a continuation. Each reset is a new experience where at least one thing is different from the previous playthrough. As much as I would like to discuss these events and endings, they should be left for the player to experience without spoiling anything. So, the"game" indirectly encourages the player to break the flow of the narrative and does it in a very smart way, indeed.

It all comes down to the level design which was well thought out. At times, it even starts playing with your mind. It makes you question yourself: Are you in control? Or is the “game”? What if it is neither? Heck, it even mocks both you and itself, including The Narrator. The hidden story behind all this is rather deep once you uncover it. What it tries to achieve here is unprecedented. Additional praises include The Narrator’s voice acting which is excellent and the soundtrack that fits perfectly with the mood of the “game”. Visually, it looks similar to any recent Source game. It has a nice colour pallet and some of its aesthetics resemble something from Aperture Science. In truth, The Stanley Parable does many things right, it seems, making it very hard to criticise it for any flaws or to even be nitpicky. The most obvious observation would be that it is a very short “game” of up to four or five hours if you go for all its endings, I would say. It is even possible to complete it in about five minutes if you follow The Narrator’s instructions. However, based on its scope, I believe it has the right length and does not over stay its welcome. More would have definitely made it actually repetitive.

In conclusion, at the end of the day, I personally found the experience enjoyable and perhaps that is enough to warrant a recommendation. It is a not a traditional game, and I would even say that it is not a game. It acts almost like an interactive playground for the player to experiment various ways to break the narration. But it is uniquely designed, intelligently written and amusing at times. Yes, very creative. Actually, it might as well have the best narrative as far as I am concerned. Personally, I could not find any traditional faults with it, aside from having almost no "gameplay", if that counts. I will admit that this might be the first and only non-game which I really enjoyed. So if you are looking for a traditional game, then do not get The Stanley Parable. You will be disappointed. However, I strongly recommend it for its one-of-a-kind experience which should not be missed nor ignored.

One advice though: Do get it on a sale. I believe ten pounds, or your regional equivalent, is a tad too much for its amount of content, even if it is exceptional. Maybe that is its only flaw actually.
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94 of 104 people (90%) found this review helpful
27 people found this review funny
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 11, 2015
A game is good when you know the Narrator deserves an Emmy Award.
The neverending seriousness going in with the bizzare's game and strange, random and yet intriguing pace.
This game is extraordinary, it may seem questionable and pecuilar in the start, but man this game gave me a good time with laughing my pants off.
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50 of 53 people (94%) found this review helpful
51.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 2, 2015
A gem in my opinion!

This is one of those games that I actually tell myself I’m so glad that I played. The concept of this game is great to me.

You play as Stanley. A man who works in a mundane job pushing buttons all day. Orders come through to his screen to push buttons and he does as told. One day, Stanley realises no orders are coming through, and that no one else is in the office. He gets up to see what’s going on.

That’s where we come in! You navigate Stanley around a very seemingly linear office, and quickly discover that you have a narrator dictating everything that you do, before you do it. Of course, leaving you room to either play out what he says, or go against it. You come to various paths and crossroads and are given the choice to either do what you’re told or not.

What I love about this game is how it plays on pure human curiosity. If you go one way, you usually wonder… but what would happen if I went the other way? There is many endings to the game, and as the narrator goes on with his story, you wonder what is true. If anything you’re being told is true, what the real story to the game is or if there even is one. It gets you thinking, and I love a game that’ll make me think!

I enjoyed this game very much. I have an odd “fear”, kind of, of missing or losing things. So being given a game with many paths, endings and different things to find, admittedly I did OCD over it a bit and actually went as far as drawing myself a map (Don’t judge me). But it was a lot of fun! I had a great time playing this game and think it is something anyone could enjoy.

The graphics are nice. I wasn’t aware before, but this game actually started as a Half-Life 2 mod. As a standalone game I think it did really well for itself.

The characters are amazing. I love both Stanley, the narrator and the odd “relationship” they have with each other (Even though Stanley never speaks). The voice casting for the narrator is on point, I honestly couldn’t imagine the character any other way. He’s well-spoken and has a great charm about him. The narrator in ways kind of “trolls” you a bit with how he tries to keep you on track or how he reacts when you go against him. But he’s a great character and that is important for a game so dependent on that character being entertaining.

The humour in this game was something I did enjoy quite a bit. The way things are done and played out I was quite impressed with.

In terms of achievements, a few can be a little tedious, but in ways you ain’t even mad. As said before the game can “troll” you at times and it does so even more through the achievements. I would say that it’s still easy to 100%, but there is a few that you kind of need to “cheat” to achievement. For example, an achievement titled “Go outside”, your task being to “not play The Stanley Parable for 5 years”. Which, come on!

All in all, I love this game and really think you should give it a try. If you like a good bit of humour and like your curiosity being tempted I think this game is a good one for that.

TL ; DR : A great and unique game that tests your curiosity and gets you thinking. It has many endings to offer and generally is fun, definitely try it!
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46 of 48 people (96%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
14.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 9, 2015
This isn't a review so it's more of an...observation.

When I bought this game, I expected a quirky, fun, and curious adventure.

Why then, throughout every ending, was I constantly on edge? This is not a horror game. In fact, there is only one single part in the entire game I would say could actually jump you, and it's an error noise.

But...something within me was bothered during my gameplay. Was it the blank interior? The lack of music?
Maybe it was the pure silence you experienced while awaiting the narrator to provide you with your next choice.

No. I think it's more.

There's something else about this game. Something I noticed from the start. Something about this game is...wrong. It's like you are being watched. The entire time. And, even more disturbingly, you discover in one of the endings that this is entirely possible.

This is not a horror game.

And yet...'s something else entirely.
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