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The Stanley Parable Helpful Development Showcase is an extremely insightful and informative look into what it takes to make a video game. This week: A review of last week's blog post

Davey Wreden, Blogger

May 8, 2013

5 Min Read

The Stanley Parable Helpful Development Showcase is our way of connecting you to the development of The Stanley Parable by giving you a small look at what's been going on behind the scenes. Each week we'll give you a tiny peek into what it takes to make a game like The Stanley Parable, the creative challenges we come up against in the course of development, and how to not judge yourself as a person for the quality of choices you've made in your own life. These are just a few of the topics we'll cover in this incredibly useful blog series.

This week: A critical analysis of last week's blog post

You may recall that in last week's installment of the Stanley Parable Helpful Development Showcase, I explored narrative paradoxes and how to use them to make your game objectively terrible.

I'm very upset to report that after careful consideration, it seems that my presentation was incredibly flawed, and that much of the information I presented as fact appears to have been an utter fabrication. This week I would like to set the record straight by explaining what exactly was misreported and to correct any logical inconsistencies.

Right off the bat I dropped this turd:

"Wrecking your own game isn't just good for your players, it's also tremendously rewarding!"

This is a boldface lie, actively sabotaging my game's narrative is in no way rewarding. In fact it's one of the most emotionally destructive things I've ever done. I wake up every morning in cold sweats, I live the day in a nauseous haze, and I go to bed a horrible, anxious, miserable shell of a human being. I can directly attribute this to my work making my game's story terrible, and I apologize for leading people to think I enjoy it.

This is by far the most racist mistake that I made, and though several other inaccuracies were nearly as racist, I feel like this one deserves a specific apology.

I then presented these two characters, named Chev and Marsh:

And made the following claim:

"See how already the narrative has stopped making total sense? That's the effect that we're looking for here."

This too is a falsehood, the story in fact makes perfect sense. “Love,” as referenced in the second Attribute, is the name of a gay bar on 32nd street. While Marsh has deep affections for Chev, she is not currently inside Love with him, nor is she in any gay bar anywhere.

Again, I feel the racist undertones of this mistake deserves specific acknowledgment.

There are a number of minor gaffs throughout the next several lines (fluctuating in severity of racism), but in particular I want to call attention to this statement, which I made toward the end of the article:

"Could we take this even further and confuse the story even more? Of course we could, there is always more nonsense out there, always new piles of shit to heap onto your work, always a greater sense of sheer hatred you could be conveying to your players. Believe in your dreams."

This is perhaps the most egregious element of the entire blog post, and I feel sickened for having posted it. The truth is that there is no more nonsense in the world than what I depicted in this article. I used all of it, saving none for others to aspire to. I encouraged children to pursue even greater heights of absurdity, knowing it was a futile task.

Not three hours after posting this, I received an email from a small German child:

What have I done?? I filled a terminally ill child with hopes and dreams for a future that he'll never actually see. And then he'll die, like all animals.

Ashamed at what I had done, I hastily booked a plane to Germany to see the child before he passed away.

When I landed it turned out I had booked a flight to the wrong Germany. I got on another plane.

This photo was taken with my iPhone


I arrived at the boy's bedside moments before he died.

Next to him was a computer. He had been writing something. The story, for a video game. "Oh please god," I thought to myself, "please let it be terrible. Please let Franz have created the piece of shit he dreamed of. Please let me not have polluted his final moments on this earth." In a cold sweat, the dying boy at my side, I read through his writing, his final testament to the world.

It was the most beautiful story I had ever read. Franz died in brutal agony.

Franz may have been the first German boy whose life I ruined as a result of something I posted on this blog, but with your help he can also be the last. It is with this goal in mind that I have founded the Franz Baumgaertner Memorial Fund.




The Franz Baumgaertner Memorial Fund will directly impact children all over the world, children just like Franz, who believed in a dream that was impossible. 100% of the funds we receive will go toward educating children not to wish for something that's impossible, or stupid. Kids don't know what's good for them, and together, we'll keep it that way.


Please donate today. Please help us make sure that what happened to Franz never happens again.

The responsibility is yours.

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