Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture Review
Platforms: Playstation 4, Windows
Genre: Adventure, Puzzle
When did Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture Come Out?
Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture was first released for Playstation 4 on 11 August 2015. It was then released for Windows on 14 April 2016. It was developed by The Chinese Room, also known for the first-person shooter Half-Life 2 and the interactive fiction Dear Esther. It won the Audio Achievement from the 12th British Academy Games Awards in 2015 and the Best Dialogue from the Game Audio Network Guild Awards in 2016.
What Is Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture About?
“The answers are in the light,” you hear on a radio from the voice of Kate, a scientist who was studying the threat that made the whole village disappear. That sunny village set in England is a ghost town. Literally, the only life that remains is floating lights that carry out scenes between the deserted village’s inhabitants right before they all disappeared. There is an evident mystery here, signs of a town where its previous residents left in a hurry: abandoned cars, books and of course, radios. Similar to What Remains of Edith Finch, the key to the big story is in each character’s scenes and objects. The story is set in the ‘80s and that, of course, means that there were no phones or the Internet, which could ruin a narrative like this with all the rabbit holes and conspiracies and the possibility of live footage. Your mission is to get to the bottom of the story by listening in to the conversations you stumble upon, to radio transmissions and public broadcasts from leftover radios and TVs.
This game, despite having beautiful visuals is audio-based. Most of the action goes down through sounds and pieces of conversations (similar to Alt Frequencies – a game where everything happens in a radio broadcast). The village is worth exploring – there are beautiful gardens. But the drive is definitely in finding out the story.
Is Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture Worth It?
Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture is not without its flaws: be prepared to be patient when it comes to walking around – even when you’re supposed to be running. On another note, be aware that this game is on the lower spectrum of interactivity, so if interactive fiction is your jam, you’ll love this game (as I did). If it isn’t, approach with caution. For those who like a good story, the ending is definitely worth the journey (and so is the soundtrack, chorales fit for the end of the world).