The Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe

Cover Art - The Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe
The Stanley Parable is a first person adventure game.

When a simple-minded individual named Stanley discovers that the co-workers in his office have mysteriously vanished, he sets off to find answers.

You will play as Stanley, and you will not play as Stanley.

You will make a choice, and you will have your choices taken from you.

The game will end, the game will never end.

Contradiction follows contradiction, the rules of how games should work are broken, then broken again.

You are not here to win.

The Stanley Parable is a game that plays you.
Platforms PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One S/X, Xbox Series S/X, Nintendo Switch, Windows, Linux, Mac OS
Developer Crows Crows Crows
Publisher Crows Crows Crows
Player Count 1

Game Review

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Journal Entries

June 13th, 2022

After 120+ hours for the Elden Ring Platinum trophy and with work nuts, I needed something fun and light. Something that I could enjoy, but required minimal mental acrobatics or dexterity. Well, 2013’s The Stanley Parable had a new version released recently. The Stanley Parable has come to consoles with The Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe!

I played The Stanley Parable late, maybe in 2015? I remember having fun enjoying listening to The Narrator going spare as I explored the office area. Thanks to some friends streaming the Ultra Deluxe version recently, I figured it would be a perfect choice. The bits of new content tickled my funny bone, and lying on the couch seemed the best place to explore again.

20220613 - Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe - Ah yes the adventure line tm
All you have to do is walk down a path. You select the path, but that’s it.

If you try The Stanley Parable for the first time, I recommend following the Narrators instructions. Don’t worry about exploring yet, simply follow the prompts. This path will show you most of the areas you can later explore, and sets the tone of the game well.

The draw of The Stanley Parable is the multiple story paths open to you. You don’t have to do strange things to unlock different story paths. A different path and then ending is achieved by walking through a different door. It sounds like such a minor gameplay task, but every path is different, and a treat to discover on your own.

20220613 - Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe - Yay I won - the story can take you in very unexpected directions
Another funny ‘ending’. The Stanley Parable is a huge choose-your-own adventure game.

Actually talking about the endings, there is a setting ‘Trigger Warnings’ you may want to turn on. There are a couple of endings that involve mental health and suicide. These are very much in the minority for the tonal shift, but that makes finding these two endings even more jarring. So my suggestion is these are topics you would rather avoid, enable ‘Trigger Warnings’. As soon as you start to get to the ending, you can then skip the ending and start back in your office.

As I explored the office as Stanley, I did notice a bunch of trophies had popped. A couple I knew about and had tried to get early, such as ‘Knock 5 times on door 430’. Others I achieved in the couple of hours I played. As I was shutting down for the night, I noticed I only needed 5 trophies, and one of those is always the Plat. So I had a sticky beak at what achievements were remaining.

20220613 - Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe - Yes I spoiled one trophy or did I
Oh no I spoiled a trophy. Or did I?

It was here I cheesed my first trophy. There is a trophy ‘Super Go Outside’ which is a callback to an original achievement. If you don’t know what I am talking about, I won’t spoil the surprise. If you do know, then yes I did the thing and have this trophy.

This leaves me with one semi-storyline-specific trophy, a speedrun, and one more. The Commitment trophy requires you ‘Play The Stanley Parable for the entire duration of a Tuesday’ for the Platinum.

I dislike these trophies. There is an easy way to get this – start The Stanley Parable Monday night, and then leave it. Make sure all power saving is off. Come back Wednesday morning and the trophy is ‘earned’.

To me, these trophy requirements encourage trophy hunters to waste power. I am going to try and get the trophy following the spirit of the challenge though. Tuesday’s are now going to be The Stanley Parable days. An hour or two each Tuesday, and I will get the trophy in a few weeks. This will combine another Platinum with some downtime and exploring all the endings.

20220613 - Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe - The Platinum is within sight
The Platinum is in sight

So expect a little blurb about a story branch for the next few weeks, because Stanley Parable Tuesdays are here for a while!

June 20th, 2022

I got to have my Stanley Parable Tuesday this week. It was a fun couple of hours exploring different ways of playing and messing with endings. This is the highlight of The Stanley Parable. One simple premise – exploring an office – and finding the impact each insignificant choice can have on the story.

Anyone that says they know the ‘two or three possible endings’ definitely has the wrong end of the stick. The Stanley Parable originally ran the ending spectrum from the dark to the ridiculous. The Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe doubles down on this, and then some.

I thought I would be replaying and finding a lot of the same endings while looking for new ones. What I didn’t expect were mid-game changes where previous runs had an impact.

20220620 - Stanley Parable - Settings World Champion
Generally, The Narrator is very supportive of Stanley’s efforts

On top of the bits and pieces I have been finding, there is the reassurance bucket to consider as well. The Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe has made many alternate endings depending on if you pick it up or not. It sounds minor, but there are some emotional and hilarious consequences when taking the bucket with you.

Another example was a bug in the original game that is now an ending of sorts. If you know where I am talking about, you know. I am not going to go into huge detail and spoil it for you, but Ultra Deluxe left the bug in rather than fix it. This leads to a very interesting twist that I never saw coming. Especially when I wasn’t trying to get here in the first place!

20220620 - Stanley Parable - Unintentional Ending
An unfortunate bug has turned into an unexpected ending

Trophy wise I have only the ‘play for all of a Tuesday’ to go. In a couple of weeks, I may be able to have a longer dedicated run meaning I could Platinum Stanley Parable soon. Or I could just mess around for an hour or two every Tuesday for a couple of months and let it pop that way.

Either way, I am going to have fun poking around for more secrets and fun to enjoy.

20220620 - Stanley Parable - If I take a Tuesday off I can have this pretty quick
Yes, I am definitely going for the Platinum

July 4th, 2022

I managed to get in Stanley Parable Tuesday this week. I didn’t play too much, but I did get some game time in! Once again I am simply exploring the office and trying to get as many different endings as I can.

Every time I think I have discovered all of the endings, the Stanley Parable throws me down a new path. Sometimes it’s because I thought I had already done a passage. Other times you need to do something in a slightly different order for a drastically different outcome!

I have been spending more time than I expected trying to get into offices and other areas I can see. Is this riveting action? Nope. But it is relaxing and how I intend to build up my Tuesday hours for the trophy!

20220704 - Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe - Why cant I get in the office
I want to get into this office. The PC is on, something must be in there!

There was one ending that was almost the same as I expected but with one exception. I won’t go into details, because the Stanley Parable is best experienced yourself. I will say that it did lead me to a surprisingly emotional ending in the best possible way.

Happy endings in the Stanley Parable are rare. It’s not that the endings are all bad for Stanley, it’s a case of most endings are not what I can call joyful. But this one was, and I didn’t expect it at all.

20220704 - Stanley Parable Ultra Deluxe - Surprisingly the most emotinal happy ending
Now do I have to go looking for droids?

I should have been keeping a log on how many hours I have been playing though. I need to play 24 hours on a Tuesday, and I have no idea how close I am to accomplishing this. So it might be quite a few more Stanley Tuesdays!