In As Dusk Falls, A Satisfying Ending Doesn’t Demand A Pleasant One

Narrative adventure games often land developers in a precarious situation. Inspired heavily by film and TV, the genre tends to stand out thanks to its branching paths, interactive roads not taken, and various endings. That means any team making such a game is writing not just one story, like a TV or movie writer, but many, and because any player could travel down any particular path, each one needs to feel satisfying in the end. Thus, many games in the genre struggle to strike that balance. Having played and seen several of As Dusk Falls‘ various outcomes, I find it to be one of the best examples of a story that ends well no matter where players take its characters.

Finding out how that delicate balancing act is achieved is chiefly why I recently spoke to Interior Night, the new studio that launched As Dusk Falls earlier this year. Speaking with CEO and creative director Caroline Marchal and art director Mike Bambury, we also touched on how the game manages to make its motion comic so emotive, that sequel teaser you likely caught at the end of the game, and who the players most cared about keeping safe in the years-spanning crime drama.

This article contains spoilers for As Dusk Falls.

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Author: Mark Delaney