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Firewatch was #6 on my Top Ten Most Wanted Games of 2016, so I don't think it will come as much of a surprise when I say that Firewatch was a game I truly couldn't wait for, and that's also why I am very pleased to tell you that the game is an utter delight.
And moments like these is what makes Firewatch stand out from anything I have ever played before. In the end, when everything is said and done, Firewatch is about the protagonist Henry. We got to live inside his head and tried to understand what he thinks and feels. But the truth is that Henry is who he is. A man looking to escape his past and somehow find redemption in the wilderness. We are just there to witness this and tag along for the ride. If you are looking for a game that is visually stunning and different from anything else you have ever played then I cannot recommend Firewatch enough, yes it is short between 6-8 hours. But I can guarantee you now, those will be some of the best 6-8 hours you will have ever spent in a video game.
Firewatch is a rare and beautiful creation, that expands the possibilities for how a narrative game can be presented, without bombast or gimmick. It's delicate, lovely, melancholy and wistful. And very, very funny. A masterful and entrancing experience.
If you note the two main characters' penchant for irony and have been paying attention to the clues in the game, such as the cheap mass market paperbacks scattered about the area, you'll sense that the mystery isn't on the level of some global alien conspiracy, but rather, like "Firewatch" itself, it's something mundane and graspable. In the context of a medium that's normally obsessed with feeding on the outlandish, I mean that as a compliment.
Firewatch is truly more about the journey, than it is the destination. In the end, I didn't care all that much about the mystery being solved, however, I did care about Henry's overall progression. You not only feel for this character, but you more or less are this character.
Firewatch is truly something special. It tells a beautifully crafted, character-driven, engaging story with impeccable pacing. It’s deeply reflective and thought provoking, not only in the context of its characters and their situations, but in a broader context of player interaction with video games.
If you were expecting a video game replete with all the big budget thrills you're accustomed to, you might find Firewatch a lean, almost sparse affair. You wouldn't be wrong either. This isn't a game for everyone. In fact for some, it could barely pass off as a game, due to its narrow focus on telling an immersive tale. Nonetheless, it achieves what it set out to do. Namely, using well-worn video game elements to tell a story that stays with you long after you're done. And for that, Firewatch's a triumph.
If you have experience exploring the outdoors, or want to better understand what it is to duality of feeling like a pioneer in an undiscovered location while simultaneously feeling secluded and vulnerable Firewatch might resonate as strongly with you as it did with me.
You seriously need to play Firewatch. It's a five-star game, and an experience I will remember for a long, long time. Now that there's been a release on Xbox One, nobody has an excuse to miss out.
Firewatch is a breath of fresh air in the adventure game genre. While the game is primarily dialogue based like other adventure games, gameplay is more FPS-like as you will climb cliffs, rock faces, rappel, and cross over make shift bridges as you work to solve the mystery of the Shoshone National Forest. While some navigation issues make getting around the environment difficult, the real salt in the wound is the abrupt, and illogical revelation that makes no sense in the context of the events leading up to the finale.
Firewatch is truly a storytelling masterpiece. The mystery unfolds at a proper pace as you explore the beautiful Wyoming wilderness and the characters naturally grow as they encounter different experience. Rich Sommer and Cissy Jones did an exceptional job with the voice acting, bringing Henry and Delilah to life and making me form an emotional bond with them. I highly recommend this game to anyone who loves a great story.
Review in Arabic | Read full review
Even better than presenting its dangers, Firewatch presents the threat of danger. This is no feel-good summer beach read; this is a brutally beautiful and fragile story of people running from their problems—and problems running away from any tidy conclusions. This is the video game equivalent of a page turner, and adventure games have rarely been in finer form.
Firewatch pushes the still-forming first person exploration genre ahead several steps, with wonderful dialogue, sumptuous design, and a story that examines loneliness in unique ways.
A gorgeous, spellbinding game that plays with your thoughts and delivers a narrative throughline that you never see coming. An absolute must for fans of storytelling in games.
Firewatch is amazing for many reasons, but above all because it's an adult game that deals with serious issues, with realistic adult dialogue to match. And it deals with those issues just like actual adults would: sometimes with humor, sometimes with anger, and sometimes with sadness. It is among the very best of the first-person narrative genre, and it reminds us what video game storytelling is capable of in the right hands. It's a game I can see coming back to every year or two just to revisit its beautiful sights and memorable characters – just like a good book.
Firewatch is a short, succinct, game that tells the story it wants to tell. It offers a real look at developing relationships, choice and consequence, all with the beautifully rendered backdrop of the Shoshone national forest. It's a game that will stick with you beyond the finish and one that you'll want to go back to.
Firewatch distinguishes itself through integrity of its structure and preservation of its characters. Allowing control over Henry and Delilah's perilous connection provides a sense of ownership over the narrative and creates an important bond between action and place. Other story-focused games suffer from a damaging disconnect between agency and intention, almost as if they don't trust the player to act reasonably in accountable situations. Firewatch proves this dynamic not only to be valuable, but necessary to go forward.
And of course, the phenomenal performances of both Rich Sommer and Cissy Jones contribute the lion's share of this personal resonance. They brilliantly demonstrate emotional nuance and sensitivity, and now I selfishly want them to voice all the things together. By the ending, my heart felt so heavy not just because of the events that unfolded, but because I believed in the myth of Henry and Delilah I created over a tumultuous summer in Shoshone. Although I loved the exploration, I felt the loneliness when no voice was on the other end, wanting to joke with or occasionally comfort me.
Firewatch is a beautiful story of escapism and loss, set against the beautiful Wyoming wilderness. The physicality of your interactions, the excellent radio conversations, and poignant writing and imagery are hindered only by slight issues in presentation and technical hitching. It's grounded, human, and one that you'll be eager to talk about for days after the credits roll.
Go on; spend an afternoon with Firewatch. It has a few unsightly spots, but it's still a tremendous and thought provoking experience for anyone who loves a good adventure.
It really doesn't matter that Firewatch came out over two and a half years ago, because it's just as engrossing and enchanting as it was the first time around. From the warm glow of its forests in the morning summer light to the subtle tension of exploring a rocky gorge in the isolating silence of night, Shoshone National Forest is a character in its own right. With a story that's both funny and heartbreaking – and enhanced by some brilliant performances by its two central actors – this is an essential purchase, irrespective of whether you're playing it for the first time on Switch or simply using it as an excuse to revisit an old favourite.
Through the combination of a simplistic but phenomenally effective art style and some incredibly fluid dialogue sequences, Firewatch proves itself time and time again as one of the most memorable games we are likely to play in a long while. It's poignant and very special, albeit disappointingly choppy at times. It may feel a touch short, but its story will feel firmly finished upon reflection, remaining naturally entombed in the Wyoming woods. This is a rare game that tackles strong morals and emotions under the guise of a beautiful walk through the wilderness that always manages to keep you on your toes, a walk you'll be hard pressed to ever forget.
If "walking simulators" aren't your thing, this may not be a fit for you. I wasn't a fan of the genre before playing Firewatch, so maybe it might change your mind as well. It is hard to make the call as a critic, because the experience can be pretty personal at times. But what I can say definitively was that I was surprised.
Firewatch is narrative-driven adventure game dealing with adult issues in ways unlike any other game out there, and is one of the best looking games so far this year.
I'm not sure where I left Henry at the end of the story, let alone Henry and his wife or Henry and Delilah, but I'm okay with not knowing. The experience in Wyoming might have complicated things in a way they weren't ready for, and it might have veered into the surreal, but I think it's what they both needed to move on — in whatever way that might be.
Firewatch has an affective and engaging story that draws you in, and I couldn't put the game down after the halfway point. What initially seems like more of a relaxing walking simulator becomes something more consequential and dire. Anyone interested in great stories—not just those told through video games—needs to pick up Firewatch. Like Celeste and GRIS, Firewatch is a triumph of artistic and thought-provoking game design, and it can remind you of summer as you bundle up for the cold winter ahead.
Firewatch shows how a good combination of narrative, character interactions, exploration, and visuals can create a unique experience that keeps gamers engaged despite the limits of the actual gameplay.
After finishing 'Firewatch', I sat in a kind of stunned silence for awhile, the same way I do after watching a particularly powerful movie. It's the rare game that makes you feel something human, something ethereal and difficult to describe. It's not a long game but I finished it in one sitting, completely spellbound. If you are at all a fan of gaming as a method of storytelling, you should probably play 'Firewatch'.
A stunning example of interactive storytelling, Firewatch's greatest success is making you feel like it's really happening to you. And the less you know about it going in, the more you'll enjoy it.
An industry supergroup brings together their experience to tell an engaging narrative in a beautiful world. Firewatch explores love and commitment through two of the most authentic videogame characters I've seen. A simply wonderful game.
The ending really was disappointing, but it’s so superbly done in every other department that it really doesn’t matter. People will be talking about their experiences with Henry and Delilah rather than what happened afterwards. Find yourself a free afternoon, no distractions or spoilers, and experience Firewatch.
Firewatch excels at storytelling first and foremost. Thematic maturity and likable characterization only serve to complement the tale. Featuring gorgeous visuals that look amazing even in the dark of night, a visit to the Shoshone National Forest has never been this enjoyable! Get out there!
It's odd to think that in game in which you never meet any real humans face to face that you never feel alone, and that's part of the magic of Firewatch. Firewatch is a must have for all PS4 owners.
I knew within five minutes that Firewatch was special. And, whilst the game itself isn't mechanically perfect, it didn't have to be. By the end of it, it had emotionally affected me in a way that perhaps no other game has.
Firewatch is a perfectly written narrative adventure with an ideal rhythm. We will accompany Henry in his new work, which he use to escape from his real life, and establish an important and emotional connection with our boss Delilah, while we face a mystery and a fire, each more frightening. However, nothing is as it seems. Highly recommended.
Review in Spanish | Read full review
All in all, I loved playing through Firewatch and ended up finishing it in a single epic 4-hour long session that ended at almost 2 a.m. I highly recommend this purchase to gamers looking for a different experience from your usual gaming sessions.
Firewatch has a fun and exciting storyline, with very interesting characters and well-constructed dialogues with humor and mystery. It is a game that goes beyond the basic premise of Walking Simulators and tries to add layers and give more depth to the gameplay of this genre. It hits all the right spots with its realistic themes creating an intimate relationship between the player, the main characters and this world that Campo Santo created. The small drops of rhythm and the end that can be a bit divisive do not take much of this great remarkable adventure,
Review in Portuguese | Read full review
Firewatch is a beautiful game full of spectacular visuals, but it's the nearly excellent writing that will really keep you moving through Henry's introspective journey.
Firewatch is a perfect example of a game that has something to say. You may not like the story it tells, and you may not feel totally satisfied with the outcome; but when the story is told in such a well crafted manner it doesn't really matter. Anyone who appreciates a good mystery will definitely get something out of Firewatch; just don't let your mind race to much, as you may end up feeling a little let down.
A brilliant adventure packed with some of the best dialogue gaming has even been medium to, Firewatch manages to engross you from the moment it begins and throughout its fittingly brief tale. Even if the journey is far more captivating than the eventual destination, Firewatch is more than worth the price of admission. Wyoming and it mysteries await.
Overall, Firewatch is a game you want to spend time in if you just want pure conversation and story. The narrative is what makes this game great even if it's a 5 to 7 hours of gameplay. And if you want to have pure adult-rated amusing conversations and jaw-dropping views of landscapes, then Firewatch is the game you definitely need to try out.
Firewatch certainly isn't a game for everyone, with its non-violent tone, its heavy emotional toll and its somewhat choppy visuals from time to time. That said, it presents a fresh breath of content to the genre that some players won't want to miss, especially when it comes to its characterization and exciting scenarios. This is one game that definitely delivers the slow burn – in a good way.
But in the end, Firewatch is one of those games that will satisfy those looking for a more cerebral, perhaps even sentimental interactive adventure. It's only about 4-5 hours in length and in some ways, that does feel too short given the amount of unanswered questions that continue to bounce around our brains. Still, the game offers one such a unique and palpable sense of tension, and it excels in the realm of pure immersion.
The analog inputs (pulling up the walkie-talkie or map, spinning the same "1234" tumblers to unlock every single park lock box with Henry's paws) combined with unique animation and believable voice work help ground Firewatch, which manages both restraint and maturity in its story without ever going full mumblecore "walking simulator." The warmth of the budding relationship between two voices with natural chemistry is undercut by harsher realities and the drawn out segments of feeling stalked and vulnerable are legitimately stressful. The result is a tight, taut human tale well worth the trek.
I enjoyed my short time in the world of Firewatch. The world is beautiful and the voice acting is excellent. But Henry and Delilah's story is far too short, and the resolution of the game's story relies far too much on a backstory that isn't given the breathing room it needs. It's an emotional rollercoaster that just teeters back down to a merry-go-round, leaving me with a detached feeling that everything I had spent the past few hours working towards has been all for nought.
Firewatch feels like a natural and smart evolution of the adventure game, offering choices without as many constraints, but at the same time expertly funneling players down a path.
Firewatch is not what many people may have wanted, but that doesn't mean it's bad. Fans of interactive drama will absolutely want to give this a try, as it shows how you can craft a "walking simulator" while keeping players involved and intrigued as opposed to ignored and bored.
In a stark textual introduction, this is the first thing you see in Firewatch. It is unusual to see the video game condition laid out so plainly at the start of an adventure. You are Henry. You are someone else. Get ready to play your role. It is an effective gambit, with deft writing settling you into the mind of this character. It is notable because many video games rely on you being yourself, or make an effort to cast you as a controlling observer. A puppeteer. But Firewatch says this with such conviction: you are Henry. But are you really? This is a character that exists, that has already been created. The choices you have in this introduction are slight variations. Firewatch is a video game that extols both the virtues and drawbacks of being someone else , conjuring an illusion of choice within a pre-set story and bumping against the limitations that ensue.
In fact, so impressive is the way everything looks and sounds that you'll kind of wish you could join Harry and leave civilisation behind. Just leave the matches at home, yeah.
Firewatch left me both disappointed but also pleased. The system performance on PS4 is a bummer and I can overlook it, as this is a game about its story and choices in dialog, so performance never affected my input to the gameplay. It just simply feels rough around the edges and it shows. Meanwhile, as hyped as I was for this and I can't really explain this as doing so would spoil elements of the story, but things were not as I expected, and while it's refreshing, sometimes elements feel like a cop out or as I said earlier, a red herring and that doesn't always rub me personally the right way. I enjoyed my time with Firewatch and I really cared about both of these people… or characters I should say.
Firewatch has a funny, surprisingly intelligent narrative all captured within a spectacular and grand setting that worth a picture or two. Even though there were some obvious performance issues with the PS4 version of the game, Firewatch is still more than worth playing, multiple times.
Firewatch is a simple game that tells a simple, far from impactful, tale, which approaches greatness thanks to superb writing, acting and design work. Gameplay is kept light and straightforward, but is always engaging – befitting a game that revels in the unique storytelling potential of games. This is a new studio's debut title, but it bears the quality of a product made by a team of veterans who have a great deal more to offer.
Campo Santo should be applauded for what its done with Firewatch. The game is an artistic masterpiece and gives further evidence that this medium can deliver beautiful and unique experiences.
Through the grounded reality it portrays and simple jobs players are tasked with, Firewatch sneaks up and surprises you when it zeroes in on a powerful message about the human condition.
It's what you feel as the story unfolds like a short story on your television screen, visiting the private grief of others who can struggle to communicate just as torturously as all of us in the real world can. And although this dual character study can feel a little slight, and has a few improbable notes that are struck seemingly just to enhance a sense of mystery, that central friendship between Henry and Delilah is powerful. It feels real, and important for both of them, and it would be wrong to change or weaken it by playing the game again.
Firewatch kept me engaged from beginning to end. The dialogue and the voice acting were believable and relatable, and I felt like the choices I made were ones I might make in real life. I wish Campo Santo added greater ramifications to some choices but it didn't diminish the emotional effect they had on me. The ending will be a point of contention for some, but it all comes down to a perspective and regardless of that, you should play this game.
Like a good thriller, the whole time I was playing Firewatch I was completely engaged and couldn't wait to see where the story went next. The tale raises interesting questions about solitude, privacy and paranoia. However, a weak ending and some occasionally strange pacing ultimately detracts from Firewatch's spark of greatness.
I really liked Firewatch. I really liked Delilah. I really liked the story told, even if the game doesn't end in an interesting or exciting way. Firewatch is simply the type of game you'd turn to if you're in the mood for story telling. It's a one-off game, and something that can be enjoyed without really putting much effort into playing it.
Do not let the ending put you off Firewatch, nor let the talk of 'Walking Simulator' give any sort of preconceived notion of this being boring. What has been delivered is one of the most engaging narrative experiences in recent times, draped beautifully over a thoroughly enjoyable adventure, with plenty of scope for going back to uncover more details, finding new conversation avenues, and stumbling upon all manner of intriguing information not seen the first time round.
In the heart of its beautiful landscapes, Firewatch tells an engaging, mysterious story that explores many aspects of human nature. And despite a few flaws, Firewatch is a kind of a game that you don't see very often. With its fantastic characters and superb dialogues, Firewatch is one of the most memorable few hours of this year that you will remember for some time.
Review in Persian | Read full review
While it may not be the most groundbreaking release of the year, Firewatch does mark another tentative step forward in exploring video game experiences beyond established genres like shooting and racing.
The game is a feat of creative brilliance that should definitely be given a try by any gamer looking for a mellow, yet thought-provoking experience. Campo Santo has got a real winner here, and if Firewatch is any indication, it’s tough to contain any excitement over whatever the developer’s next project is.
An immersive experience that gives the player a sense of vulnerability, of being watched, of inducing paranoia but intriguing them enough to press on and uncover the mystery afoot - it's also a game that's best played knowing as little as possible.
Overall, my journey in Firewatch was engaging and fun, with wonderful scenery and some of the best written and most believable conversations I've ever heard in a game. It was a special journey, however, the ending felt rushed and the feelings that were invoked during the game were brushed under the carpet. Additionally, the controls were frustrating and the technical issues are inexcusable.
The technical shortcomings do not overshadow the fact that the game is gorgeous, a fact that should be obvious even in screenshots. Though the landing is somewhat fumbled, the story wraps up in a meaningful way and achieves its intended effect. Coupled with excellent characterisation, it is a beautiful and painful look at how people try to hide from their problems, and the way people isolate themselves to hide their guilt and personal failings. Despite its issues, it is certainly an excellent game.
Ich sehe es schon vor mir: am Ende wollen die Kids nicht mehr Feuerwehrmann werden, sondern sich – einen Sommer lang – in die stillen Weiten von Wyoming zurückziehen, um Waldbrände aufzuspüren. In dieser Hinsicht hat das Entwicklerstudio Campo Santo in jedem Fall geliefert. Ich habe es bislang auch noch nicht erlebt, dass mir im Supermarkt eine Radiowerbung vor die Füße fiel, in der für Firewatch (oder ein anderes Indie-Spiel) geworben wurde. Ich meine, wir reden hier nicht über Call of Duty oder World of Warcraft, sondern über einen Normalo, der sich in die Einöde von Wyoming zurückzieht, um Waldbrände aufzuspüren und zu sich selbst zu finden. Doch auch über das clevere Marketing hinaus ist Firewatch für alle, die etwas für story-lastige Spiele übrig haben, uneingeschränkt zu empfehlen. Eines ist mir beim Spielen auch noch in den Sinn gekommen: Ich habe in den vergangenen Monaten viele VR-Brillen getestet und mich immer gefragt, welche Inhalte sich eigentlich für diese neue Technologie anbieten. Für mich ist die Frage entschieden: Firewatch in einer VR-Version wäre der perfekte Content (genauso wie Gone Home, Journey und Abzû). Einfach nur in einer 360-Grad-Sicht eine für mich neue Umgebung genießen zu können, ohne dabei ein Action-Feuerwerk abfeuern zu müssen, würde mir einen Grad an Immersion und Atmosphäre geben, den die konventionellen Darstellungsformen bislang nicht zu liefern vermögen. Wenn man Firewatch denn als einen Vertreter der Gattung "Walking-Simulator" bezeichnen will, dann hat dieses Genre wieder eine glänzende Perle hervorgebracht. Unbedingt spielen!
Review in German | Read full review
For an independent game Firewatch is impressive. It's relatively small but it's weighty. The open world setting is beautiful and a joy to explore. Once the story shifts into the mystery and conspiracy the game's lethargic pace quickens and the intensity soars. Throughout it all Delilah is your anchor. Her voice is such a comfort even in the darkest of times. She tethers you to the world and it becomes disorienting when she too begins to panic in the final act
Despite the fact that Firewatch is the debut of Campo Santo, the developers have succeeded in creating an interesting adventure, altough with a slightly dissapointing finale.
Review in Czech | Read full review
It's a beautiful, beguiling place to spend some time, absolutely worth it while you're there, but sooner rather than later you'll yearn to shed its shackles, to get off the beaten path.
By attempting to invigorate a genre which many feel has gone rather stale, Campo Santo has simply reminded us what it is we liked about that genre in the first place. Perhaps in time Firewatch will be considered a forerunner, the one which broke the mould, but right now it manages to only fall painfully between two stools.
Firewatch doesn't provide the same emotional heights or satisfying conclusion you'd expect from such a story-heavy game, but Campo Santo definitely shows promise with their debut project. Even if it won't have you reaching for the tissues by the end, this woodland walking simulator still provides a pretty great way to burn through an otherwise unoccupied afternoon.
You already know if you are going to be buying Firewatch, and if you loved Everybody's Gone to the Rapture or Life Is Strange then this is the game for you. It's small, short and almost perfectly formed, it's just the shame the game broke so many times when I was playing it. I'm hoping these problems can be found and fixed very quickly after launch and I would suggest holding off buying the game until a patch has been released, but until then we don't have much of a choice but to mark an otherwise lovely game down due to the problems encountered.
Despite featuring some awful stuttering and skipping, Campo Santo's Firewatch is one of the strongest debut projects in recent memory. The Olly Moss-designed world shines on screen, and the engaging relationship between Henry and Delilah elevates the story, even in the face of a weak closing act.
So, the opening to Firewatch may be a little too strong for the game's own good, then – and as you slowly realise the confines of your role in the game world, it's not without a little disappointment. Nevertheless, it's still a journey you should consider going on – one of human and flawed characters, compelling mystery, and sobering, bitter sweet realisations.
Firewatch could have, and should have, been so much better than it is. You can see the greatness shrivel up like a dying flower when the mystery elements are introduced, and it's heartbreaking. On brief occasions that greatness peaks through the mediocrity, but that only makes everything else more disappointing.
With both the beauty of Firewatch and its varied tones and exploration, this is one game that will resonate with players just as variously. As such, I wonder if, like Life is Strange or Beyond: Two Souls, there is a "set path" that the developers plotted out where everything lines up perfectly if these "set decisions" are made.
Even though I thought the ending was 'meh' I loved the journey that Firewatch took me on. The great writing and performances make the game and characters enjoyable from start to finish. It's a pity though that the journey was hindered by constant frame rate issues.
The vast majority of Firewatch is an utter delight. It presents a gorgeous world that you want to sink into like a hot bath, with characters you're desperate to get to know. Unfortunately, that's all sort of squandered by an ending that fizzles out into the realm of the incredibly forgettable.
The lush environments of "Firewatch" are a joy to explore, but the story at the heart of the woods leaves something to be desired. The early emotion felt in the game's intro loses its trail among a bramble of side plots and head scratching character decisions. "Firewatch" gets lost like Henry on his first day on the job.
Despite its technical hitches and messy conclusion, Firewatch's study of a flowering friendship makes for a riveting experience, against a gorgeous backdrop that breathes with fragile solitude.
Firewatch has the embers of a great narrative-driven game, but it fails to ever ignite into a furnace. Unforgivable performance issues detract from the otherwise outstanding art direction, but it's the abrupt story and unconvincing characters that really douse the hype here. Campo Santo's inaugural outing starts incredibly strongly, but your alarm bells will be ringing long before it burns out without ever really sparking into life.
Firewatch is beautiful. Firewatch is intriguing. But ultimately I don't think Firewatch is very good. At its best, this is a quiet game about two characters struggling with real-life insecurities. But when that's sidelined to make room for a main plot, Firewatch suffers. It's a game perfect for trailers, a game full of excellent dialogue and breathtaking moments and stunning vistas that ultimately amounts to nothing much at all.
Firewatch has got an interesting style to it, but it just doesn’t have the follow-through. It’s not a terrible game, but rather an undercooked one. Those looking for something new will likely appreciate its unique style, but even the most fervent of fans will be aware of its faults.
The way Firewatch presents two people who barely know each other, is an intriguing way of exploring relationships between characters. Henry and Delilah's tale was the sole reason I wanted to continue playing. But it's the performance issues that may leave the long lasting impression here, as the PS4 version of the game was released in an unacceptable state.