Critical Play: Mysteries: Slender Man

I played Slender Man released in 2012 and released on Steam this year. Designed by Mark Hadley for Parsec Productions, the game explores an abandoned cabin and the surrounding woods as you try to uncover the identity of a monster outside. I enjoyed playing this game a lot. I like mysteries that don’t start with clear clues. Instead you have to wander around and explore your space to identify clues. The game’s architectural design does a good job contributing to the mystery and conjuring up a feeling of being alone in a scary place. The goal of the game is to collect eight pages which help you solve the mystery of the monster’s identity. You use a flashlight to illuminate the outside space and explore. The narrative of the mystery is woven into the game architecture, sound design, and other play components. I felt like they did a good job leaving it up to the user to track down Slender Man by using minimal guidance. However, I wish that there could have been slightly more clues. Ultimately, I think the game effectively generates a mysterious atmosphere but did not create the most compelling mystery.

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