Dreamfall Chapters sets out to wrap up the saga started in The Longest Journey and its sequel, Dreamfall. It picks up right where Dreamfall left off and goes on to weave a complex narrative that's as intriguing and emotionally gripping as any best-selling novel. What makes Chapters so fascinating is the way it uses player choice to shape the story. Players are forced to face the past demons of characters and make profound decisions about how they should move forward in life. Apart from the compelling questions, the game seals the deal with its visuals. Stark is a beautiful, totally convincing near-future city that any modern urban dweller can easily see living in, while Arcadia is an enticing locale in a rustic Renaissance fair kind of way. It also has excellent voice acting that brings the right level of emotion and vitality to some exceptional writing. Zoe in particular is written with a depth and humor that makes her both sympathetic and utterly convincing.
Though it's incredibly well made, Chapters does contain a few problems. First, there's the possibility of getting stuck. During one playthrough, Zoe was suddenly stuck inside her apartment, unable to get back out. Second, a poor sound mix made one of Kian's missions (the search for a traitor at a secret meeting) hard to execute. Third, there's Crowbot. Crowbot is a cowboy hat-wearing cartoon crow who voices the public map/location finder for the people of Stark, and he's annoying, with an obnoxious, twangy voice that's so jarring, it has no place in its futuristic setting. Even with these flaws, Dreamfall Chapters is a fantastic game that maturely explores individual and societal issues through deft writing and interesting quest design, making players feel as if the fate of two worlds is truly in their hands. It's not often a game is this thematically ambitious or as successful at conveying its message. Though its episodic nature leaves players hanging, (Book 3 won't be out for some months), its first two chapters are chock-full of enough thought-provoking questions to ensure players will be back to experience the rest of the tale.