Percentile Rank

The Novelist is ranked in the 38th percentile of games scored on OpenCritic.

Rating Summary

Based on 14 critic reviews
Fair Man

OpenCritic Rating

68

Top Critic Average

23%

Critics Recommend

Based on 14 critic reviews

Score Distribution

Unscored Reviews

Rock, Paper, Shotgun
Unscored
Unscored
Dec 9, 2013

I was deeply disappointed to find after all my worrying and all my sacrifice that The Novelist's conclusions are suspiciously neat, too mechanical and too implausible in the family permanently cutting off one option in favour of another rather than pursuing compromise later in their lives – the destination is, sadly, not the measure of the journey. Some familial interactions ring hollow too, sound too scripted, too dramatic, too perfect. Nonetheless, it's a journey I'm glad I made.

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Scored Reviews

GameGrin
10 / 10.0
10 / 10.0
Dec 11, 2013

The Novelist is the most personal and beautiful game I have ever experienced. The creator, Kent Hudson, has quite plainly poured his heart and soul into this game, and the outcome is genuinely something to behold. Never before have I felt so emotionally involved in the characters, their situation and potential future, as in this truly player-driven story.

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Hardcore Gamer
4 / 5.0
4 / 5.0
Dec 14, 2013

We're simply not used to having real emotional reactions to video games. Sure, some titles are getting better at it, but for the most part that's something truly lacking in the medium.

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Twinfinite
4 / 5.0
4 / 5.0
Dec 11, 2013

I'd easily recommend it for anyone interested in thoughtful, emotionally-driven story — though, its focus on this is likely a detractor for many more "traditional" gamers.

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Eurogamer
8 / 10
8 / 10
Jan 2, 2014

It's an interesting short experiment in narrative choices, then, but perhaps I'm just missing the point because I'm single, young, childless, and will never be able to afford that house. In any case, I really hope Mr Ghost gets to flip a table over one day or spew some food just once, because he's really earned it.

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Polygon
7.5 / 10.0
7.5 / 10.0
Dec 11, 2013

The Novelist captures the quiet heartbreaks of family life.

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Game Informer
7 / 10.0
7 / 10.0
Dec 13, 2013

Seeing one character succeed at another's expense isn't exactly fun, but it results in some tough and thought-provoking decisions

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GameSpot
7 / 10
7 / 10
Dec 9, 2013

The Novelist doesn't tell the most tightly constructed of stories, but the choices it forces you to make have real, affecting weight.

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RPG Fan
70%
70%
Dec 17, 2013

A disappointing experiment in disappointment.

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IGN
6.5 / 10.0
6.5 / 10.0
Dec 9, 2013

The Novelist is an interesting, minimalist study of family relationships undermined by a rather superficial narrative.

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The Digital Fix
6 / 10.0
6 / 10.0
Jan 19, 2014

The Novelist still remains an interesting experiment that you will find yourself getting caught up in. Playing as an outsider to the family gives you a significant amount of objectivity but also prevents you from ever really connecting.

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Game Revolution
Dec 11, 2013

[W]hile The Novelist certainly has a particular charm with its minimalist visual style and unique concept, I felt underwhelmed by my experience with it.

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VideoGamer
5 / 10
5 / 10
Dec 17, 2013

An intriguing narrative is bogged down by sparse mechanics and repetitive environments.

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Slant Magazine
Dec 14, 2013

These mechanics aren't broken so much as literally insane, in the sense that each chapter requires you to do the exact same things, somehow expecting different results.

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