The Wolf Among Us is a game developed by TellTale Studios in 2016. It’s an interactive fiction mystery where players traverse fabletown: a section of modern day New York where all the old time fables (like Snow White, The Big Bad Wolf, etc.) had to live after their stories of happily ever after ended. Players serve as the Big Bad Wolf trying to solve a series of murders occurring between fables; an incredibly uncommon occurrence.
Other than quick time events, the game is primarily driven through narrative where players will have the opportunity to make split decisions and respond to other characters dialogue in 1 of 4 ways. The characters of fabletown will remember the decisions and responses of the player, changing the trajectory of the game, the way characters treat the players, and the things the player is allowed to do or say later.
Impact of Mechanics
In my opinion, the mechanics enhance the mystery of the story. Because the player is uncertain of what any one path will allow or not, the player is left constantly wondering if they made the right choice. The ability to sway other characters is also significant in enhancing immersion in the narrative. In making decisions feel impactful, players truly feel like a detective and human interacting with other humans. It also a player to truly feel like they, instead of some removed persona, is actually in the game.
The narrative itself is incredibly interesting. It utilizes an evocative narrative with a twist on something everyone knows about: childhood fables. The darkness and gritty-ness also makes everything feel more mysterious as players are left wondering whats going to be around the next corner. The magic also makes it so anything could be causing anything, there doesn’t have to be a logical rhyme and reason to why thigns are happening which is intersting.
Although the player makes choices, in the end the main plot points are all more or less the same. The relationships and choices the players make ultimately does not affect the story, the plot points, and any major narrative moments. In the end, the choices are more of a flavor of the same game and story, colored by whatever player is playing.