In addition to the similar games listed above, which have been linked to this game specifically in the database, you may find games with a similar theme to Oxenfree in the following lists:
While many games include characters to interact with, some are specifically designed to make relationships a central element. Whether this is during the rounds of a puzzle game amidst a zombie outbreak or as we race cars around a circuit, they can offer a unique way to think deeply about how we relate to each other and to the games people play.
In contrast to films or books, characters and relationships in video games need to be discovered by the player. Some of my favourite relational moments in games happen amidst other action. Often these other actions – whether shooting, puzzle-solving, or fetching and carrying – serve to underline the difficult, awkward and snatched nature of interpersonal interactions.
While some video games revel in the density and effort required to discover the narrative in their virtual worlds, others want to make it as easy and accessible to make their story your own.
Two things come together in these games. Characters are fully voiced by actors. Choices have a tangible effect on how things turn out. For former reduces friction for the player. The latter increases engagement.
Games like the Frog's Princess
, King of Dragon Pass
and Call of the Sea
offer a story-book feel with branching narrative that can be a novel way for younger players to discover the joy of stories.
Other games like South of the Circle
, Before Your Eyes
and It Takes Two
offer fully voiced experiences with choices that don't create new endings but still add a sense of involvement.
Then there are games for older players like Detroit: Become Human
, Last Stop
, Grand Theft Auto
, Twelve Minutes
and Heavy Rain
combine branching stories and fully voiced characters. These games use the immersion of the human voice and branching stories to create engaging experiences.
Voices and choices are a large part of what it means to be human. The games in this list use these two things to create experiences that engage on a deeper level.
The British Academy Games Awards are presented annually to recognise, honour and reward outstanding creative achievement in Games. The awards categories reflect the wealth and diversity of the games sector.
The awards started in 2004 and are presented by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA). For parents, they are a great way of discovering brilliant games to play in their family. The games included here are from these categories:
The Family Games Award highlights games that will work really well for parents and children. These often include multiplayer features and feature a cast of family-friendly characters.
The Games Beyond Entertainment award is also of interest as this highlights more unusual games with an emphasis on storytelling that addresses topics that parents may find appealing themselves.
Video games often place you in positions of power, saving the world, righting the wrongs and bringing justice. Of course, real life isn't neat and tidy like that. There are many games where you are challenged to make difficult decisions
and some of those put you in situations without power, where the kindest thing to do is to lie.
Whether it's not telling Ellie the truth about her unique response to the infection so she can have a "normal" life in The Last Of Us
, lying about who's drugs they are to save a friend in Life Is Strange
, deciding not to be honest with friends to save their feelings and avoid confrontation in Oxenfree
or rearranging an old man's memory so he thinks he's made it to his dream in To The Moon
, telling lies is sometimes the right thing to do.
The games in this list challenge our neat conceptions of right and wrong. Playing them, we face the messiness of real-world justice and consider the power of withholding the truth. We might not always agree with the reasons or ethics, but we have a chance to revisit our values as we play.
Video games create spaces for us to go and play. These spaces are sometimes an escape from the real world. Equally, games can help us revel and celebrate the real world.
Inspired by an article
written by Keith Stuart about autumnal games, this is a list of games that are played while the leaves are falling.
These games offer, rather than escapism, unique ways to appreciate the season we are living in. They are an exercise in the present moment, where we find writ large, the joys of harvesting apples, warm fires, crisp walks and the breathing in before the long dark of winter.