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Dear Esther is the commercial remake of a Half-Life 2 modification of the same name first released in 2007. This version was redesigned entirely for the Source engine. The game is set on a remote, desolate island somewhere in the outer Hebrides. It is entirely story-driven and has no action sequences. It is possible to swim in certain section, but the player's character is immediately called back when he dies. The player walks the protagonist around, exploring the island, while a narrator gradually releases information about the meaning, hinting at a motorway accident. While he moves towards an aerial through four chapters with a linear design, the significance of the accident and the link to the island become apparent. Through its slow pace and the classical-driven music, the focus is more on the ambiance and the experience, than on actual gameplay, even though there are hardly any scripted parts.


Dear Esther Windows A waterfall crashing down
Dear Esther Windows Walking back up the stairs along the cliff.
Dear Esther Windows A scene with paper boats
Dear Esther Macintosh A spectacular moonlight view at the path and shore below from high atop the tower

Promo Images

Dear Esther Screenshot
Dear Esther Screenshot
Dear Esther Screenshot
Dear Esther Screenshot

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User Reviews

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Critic Reviews

GameZebo Windows Feb 17, 2012 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100 Windows Feb 13, 2012 9 out of 10 90 Windows Feb 15, 2012 90 out of 100 90
Game Informer Magazine Windows Feb 13, 2012 8 out of 10 80
Digital Spy Windows Feb 15, 2012 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
Gameplay (Benelux) Windows Mar 31, 2012 80 out of 100 80
ActionTrip Windows Feb 29, 2012 7.7 out of 10 77
Absolute Games ( Windows Mar 01, 2012 76 out of 100 76
Mana Pool Windows Aug 08, 2012 7.4 out of 10 74 Macintosh May 16, 2012 14 out of 20 70


Topic # Posts Last Post
Meditative / zen 3 Cantillon (21113)
Apr 04, 2020



  • 4Players
    • 2012 – Best Story of the Year
  • GameStar (Germany) / GamePro (Germany)
    • 2012 - #5 Best Indie Game / Mod of the Year (Readers' Vote)

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Contributed to by Sciere (631405), Kabushi (243722) and Iggi (17053)