Games with strong focus on story and less focus on gameplay mechanics usually leave a strong impression despite the lack of action. Cutting back on action sequences leaves space for dialogue, exploration and emotional experience. Listed below are six games in this style that we enjoyed, in no particular order.
A Normal Lost Phone
A Normal Lost Phone brings a unique experience with the use of very simple mechanics. The whole gameplay is basically browsing a stranger’s phone that you found on the street. Let’s say that you try to unlock it to be able to determine the owner and return the phone.
In this case the task isn’t that easy. In order to find clues, you basically need to go through the owner’s contacts, personal messages… and suddenly you find yourself reading their emails and logging in to online forums. After being overcome by the initial curiosity, you will all of a sudden feel uncomfortable, almost like a stalker.
Life is Strange
Ever miss high school? Life is Strange will take you back to your teenage years and all troubles that come with it. Apart from the everyday school kids’ matters, whether it is the grades or crushes, there is also a huge storm about to hit the city of Arcadia Bay.
Luckily Max Caulfield, a 14 year old aspiring photographer just moved back to town and soon enough, she finds out about her ability to reverse time. Which would have come in handy back then because all of us probably did or said something stupid that we now regret. What makes the game is unique is the opportunity to make decisions that have consequences which really drags the player in.
The Red Strings Club
Released only recently, The Red Strings Club combines elements of an adventure and visual novel. Taking place in a cyberpunk setting, the game is driven forward by dialogues.
Most of the time, you will play as a bartender and attempt to learn useful information from the customers. While clicking through conversations might not be that exciting, you can also meddle with the guests’ emotions which opens up new possibilities and enhances the feeling of control. Thanks to this, the game will really drag you in.
What remains of Edith Finch
Edith, a 17 year old pregnant girl, decides to return to the house where she grew up to uncover the destiny of her relatives. The family is cursed and all of Edith’s relatives died long before they should have. Exploring the diverse and beautifully decorated house where every room is a world of its own, you learn about their fates.
The setting feels very personal and each member has an original sequence dedicated to their story. The gameplay of these sequences varies, therefore each of them feels fresh and innovative. You will have a chance to discover a kingdom or navigate a hungry shark down a hill. That sounds awesome, right?
The Wolf Among Us
The makers of The Walking Dead game followed up on their previous success with this title. Based on the Fables comic books, they created a thriller games series. Taking on the role of a sheriff to investigate murder, the core choice and consequence game mechanics allow the player to reach multiple endings based on their decisions.
While some might object that The Wolf Among Us is more like an interactive movie than a game, it is one of the best in the genre, comparable to successful TV series.
Homesick combines the elements of interactive storytelling with original approach. Waking up alone in a huge abandoned building, your task is to uncover what happened and where has everybody gone. The game includes a lot of exploration with a realistic postapocalypse feel to it.
Starting from simple hints, you will have to actually decode and learn to use a new alphabet in order to read messages and letters left behind. With superb graphics and ambient music, the game creates a unique experience.
There is our top interactive story games, did we miss any off that you think should be on here? Let us know in the comments below!