What Remains of Edith Finch is a first-person narrative-driven adventure game. Developed by ‘The Unfinished Swans’ Giant Sparrow and published by Annapurna Interactive. It was released in 2017 to universal critical acclaim.
It belongs to a nice subgenre of videogames known pejoratively as “walking simulators”. This includes Gone Home, The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture, Firewatch, and Dear Esther.
What Remains of Edith Finch is presented as an anthology of mini-games. Which mirrors the Russian stacking Dolls-Esque Story-within-a-story structure of the game. You are given a mostly linear series of rooms to explore. Where you will come across secret crawlspaces and alternate routes.
The story is mostly delivered via exposition. The character of Edith Finch provides voice-over narration. The words she speaks hang surreally in mid-air and become a part of the scenery. This is to direct the player’s attention to a particular spot. You can walk through the bedrooms of your departed relatives. Each death is played out in small gameplay vignettes. Varying in visual style and even genre.
The player begins on Orcas Island, off the Washington state. With the journal of Edith Finch in your possession. It is a recounting of her experiences while returning to her ancestral home. She is the last surviving member of the family. From Edith’s perspective, we come to find out that the family is believed to be cursed. With nearly all of its members meeting a grisly and untimely demise.
In the past few months word got around of a possible Xbox Series S/X and PS5 version. On the 28th of July 2022, a free update was released. After being confirmed in the publisher’s showcase event. The PS4 version of the game was offered up for free with the Playstation Plus subscription service. The bad news is that if you haven’t purchased the game separately, you will not receive the free upgrade.
This has happened before. In March 2022, the Final Fantasy 7 remake was available on PS4 as a free monthly game. Then a free upgrade for the PS5 version was released. Initially, there was a catch. Those that redeemed the PS Plus version didn’t get immediate access to it. In December of 2021, this decision was revised. AS players who got it on PSPlus would be able to upgrade for free.
Starting this Wednesday…
• Episode Intermission, the DLC featuring Yuffie Kisaragi, will be 25% off for a limited time! pic.twitter.com/mnkCIRR586
— FINAL FANTASY VII (@finalfantasyvii) December 19, 2021
The game currently has a Metacritic average of nearly 90 across all platforms.