Released on May 16, 2018 for PC and Xbox One, Stay is a Narrative Adventure / Puzzle game developed by Appnormals Team and published by PQube Limited.
While in front of your PC, a mysterious chat window pops up and you find yourself chatting with Quinn, a person who has been kidnapped and locked in a room, in complete darkness and whose only "view" is to the outside. is an old computer with access only to this discussion. You will therefore have to help Quinn understand where he is, who did this to him but, above all, to help him survive and not lose hope.
The game is based on its history and its evolution, a very addicting and well-developed development. It is difficult to say more without revealing and spoiling too much, the game being mainly narrative, I can however, without going into details reveal to you that very serious and serious subjects are discussed: depression, anxiety, stress , kidnapping, isolation and suicide.
Game and gameplay
You are therefore not the character Quinn, but “yourself”, in the real world, in contact with him. The game interface (and almost everything that makes up the game) will be the chat window, the only link with Quinn. You will therefore not have control over Quinn at all, it is impossible to direct him directly, you can only advise him of actions to take.
However, Quinn will not obey you with the finger and the eye without flinching, it will be necessary to gain his confidence and, above all, to monitor his psychological state which is divided into four states:
With every dialogue, choice, or action, Quinn's state will change. If it is too bad, Quinn is at risk of sinking into depression, stressing out, having panic attacks, and even suicide. Because yes, Quinn can die, or even kill himself depending on his psychological state.
During each dialogue, without any exception, your answers and choices will therefore not only modify the story, but will also influence Quinn's psychological state.
Every now and then, Quinn will leave the screen to do something else, whether it's finding a way out or pacing aimlessly. As the adventure progresses and its explorations, Quinn may come across riddles and puzzles that you will have to solve. The solution is far from obvious, some puzzles are even a little difficult.
Another very important point for the game is the weather. This is because the game will continue to advance even if you quit it. Quinn may even yell at you or be ironic if you are gone too long, or if you left without warning that you are going to be away. But it's a double-edged sword: Quinn may sink to the bottom of the hole during your absence and you may find him dead when you restart your game if you have taken too long between two game sessions.
Stay is truly an excellent and surprising narrative game. Although the graphic aspect may put off some, it fits perfectly to the atmosphere and contributes to the immersion. The game tackles very serious themes which are very well represented in the game, without falling into clichés. As for the lifespan, the game offers a good fifteen hours of games and a very high replayability from all possible branches and endings.