Before I discuss the games proper, let me say that by all conventional standards these are not games. There's no reward system (winning or losing), there are no levels to be beat, no bosses to battle and no series of objectives to be completed. There essentially is no way to fail at playing these games unless the key to move forward is broken. These games basically amount to Walking Simulators, where your interaction with the world in the games are limited to, picking up objects and putting them down, pressing a button, turning on and off a flashlight and simply walking forward. All 3 of these games are done in first person. These games don't take any real cognitive effort to complete and offer no challenge to anyone who would consider themselves a hardcore gamer. However, despite having the same limitations and a similar set up, "The Stanley Parable" manages to be not only incredibly fun and hilarious but it manages to do what "Dear Esther" and "Gone Home" could not do. So what's so great about "The Stanely Parable" ? Before I answer that, let me explain what's so bad about "Dear Esther" and "Gone Home". FYI:
SPOILERS FOR THESE GAMES ABOUND! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!