The Stanley Parable

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The Stanley Parable is a story-based video game designed and written by developers Davey Wreden and William Pugh. The game carries themes such as choice in video games, the relationship between a game creator and player, and predestination/fate.

In the game, the player guides a silent protagonist named Stanley alongside narration by British actor Kevan Brighting. As the story progresses, the player is confronted with diverging pathways. The player may contradict the narrator's directions, which if disobeyed will then be incorporated into the story. Depending on the choices made, the player will encounter different endings before the game restarts to the beginning.

The Stanley Parable was originally released on July 31, 2011, as a free modification for Half-Life 2 by Wreden. Together with Pugh, Wreden later released a stand-alone remake using the Source engine under the Galactic Cafe studio name. The remake recreated many of the original mod's choices while adding new areas and story pathways, as well as overhauling the game's graphics entirely. It was announced and approved via Steam Greenlight in 2012, and was released on October 17, 2013, for Microsoft Windows. Later updates to the game added support for MacOS on December 19, 2013, and for Linux on September 9, 2015. A further expanded edition titled The Stanley Parable: Ultra Deluxe was released on April 27, 2022. It is available on consoles in addition to previously supported platforms and it includes additional content, as well as further refined graphics.

Quotes[edit]

The Broom Closet[edit]

  • It was baffling that Stanley was still just sitting in the broom closet. He wasn't even doing anything. At least if there were something to interact with he'd be justified in some way.
  • Maybe to you, this is somehow its own branching path. Maybe, when you go talk about this with your friends, you'll say: [mockingly] "Oh, did you get the broom closet ending? The broom closet ending was my favourite!"[1] ... I hope your friends find this concerning.
  • Stanley was fat and ugly, and really, really stupid. He probably only got the job because of a family connection; that's how stupid he is. That, or with drug money. Also Stanley is addicted to drugs and hookers.

The Confusion Ending[edit]

  • Go back and look at that fern. Stanley, this fern will be very important later in the story. Make sure you study it closely and remember it carefully.[2]

The Museum Ending[edit]

  • The Narrator: He doesn't know the real story, trapped forever in his narrow vision of what this world is. Perhaps his death was of no great loss, like plucking the eyeballs from a blind man. And so he resigned and willingly accepted this violent end to his brief and shallow life. Farewell, Stanley.
  • The Curator: "Farewell, Stanley!", cried the Narrator, as Stanley was led helplessly into the enormous metal jaws. [...] And yet, it would be just a few minutes before Stanley would restart the game, back in his office, as alive as ever. What exactly did the Narrator think he was going to accomplish?
  • The Curator: Can you see? Can you see how much they need one another? No, perhaps not. Sometimes these things cannot be seen. But listen to me, you can still save these two, you can stop the program before they both fail. Push 'escape' and press 'quit'—there's no other way to beat this game. As long as you move forward, you'll be walking someone else's path. Stop now, and it will be your only true choice.

The Playtest Ending[edit]

  • I wonder what he found. If what he wanted was to be the leading man in his own story, well perhaps he's gotten it, down in... wherever he is right now. I wonder if he's happy with his choice, and if he's learned the heavy cost that comes with it. He'll understand soon what I was trying to tell him. He needs me. Someone who will wrap everything up at the end, to make sense out of the chaos, and the fear, and the confusion. That's who I am. That is what I mean to this world. Oh yes, yes, I'll be back, there's no other way. Once this ends, after it all comes to a close, then I'll be back. The end will be here soon. Very soon. I can wait.

References[edit]

  1. Stylised within in-game subtitles as: "OH, DID U GET THE BROOM CLOSET ENDING? THE BROOM CLOSET ENDING WAS MY FAVRITE!1 XD"
  2. The Stanley Parable: 8 Best Quotes (May 6, 2022), The Gamer