The last time players were thoroughly engaged as a voyeuristic hero/anti-hero/anti-villain was Sega's Nighttrap. After the horrid critical and commercial failure that the game turned out to be, we haven't really been able to jump into the shoes of a voyeur as often, until The Novelist came along.
Orthogonal Games is aiming to lurch into uncharted territory with an unprecedented game about family, life, choices and the interaction between an ethereal player-character and a family on the verge of falling apart. It's a neat concept that has already garnered almost universal support on Steam's Greenlight page just because it's such an out-there concept. Most gamers are just completely befuddled at how you actually play the game, which will be interesting to see if the Greenlight page is ever updated with more videos.
I, for one, really have no idea how the game is properly played other than floating around and highlighting things. Then again, that's assuming we could even call it an interactive piece of digital game media in the same way that we label other titles as interactive entertainment. Gears of War this game is not.
Still, I'd love to see more of The Novelist. I like the minimalist approach to some potentially heavy themes, and the art-style – while it doesn't quite pop in the same manner as something like Don't Starve or Riot – has a very poignant feel to the portrayal of the family characters.
If you like what Orthogonal Games is doing with The Novelist and you're keen to see more original titles populate and grow the Steam Store, be sure to pay a kind visit to the official Steam Greenlight page.
Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.
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