Publisher Annapurna Interactive brought a spate of games with it to PAX East 2017. Among them is a game we've been waiting on patiently – that actually just received a release date – for four years now: What Remains of Edith Finch. The follow-up to developer Giant Sparrow's masterpiece The Unfinished Swan, Edith Finch is a first-person puzzle game that explores the life and tragic deaths of the rather unlucky Finch family.
Conveyed as a series of short stories dealing with each character's death, the game largely takes place in and around a house that, at least for us, strongly evoked Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. A few different chapters of the collection of stories were on display, all functioning as good snack-sized impressions of the game. Much like Giant Sparrow's previous release, there is a certain Disney-esque charm to just about everything featured in the game, and the writing and voice work look like they're going to be absolutely brilliant.
For better or worse the gameplay seemed to be less of a sure thing. The demo we had seemed a little clunky, and we even got trapped in a bathroom for our first time through, because the item we needed to interact with wasn't working properly. After a restart everything was fine, however, and once we got going everything was wonderful. The puzzles we saw mostly revolved around figuring out the proper way to move items within the spaces you explore, but nothing proved a real challenge.
We mean this in a good way, though, as while the puzzles do make you think, they don't go so far as to interfere with or stand in the way of the game's story-telling. This is good, because by all indications the story is going to be the main attraction. It's also worth considering that we may have been playing an old build of the game, so the version we played could also be lacking a layer of polish and finesse that the final version is going to include.
The bottom line is that What Remains Of Edith Finch is primed to be a story-telling marvel, and given developer Giant Sparrow's pedigree – The Unfinished Swan is one of this writer's favorite games of all time – nothing short of greatness should be expected. Everyone should be keeping an eye out for Edith Finch when it launches within a matter of weeks.
Will you be visiting the Finch family's home next month? Were you a fan of The Unfinished Swan? Throw some paint blobs in the comments section below.