Riven: The Sequel to Myst

released on Oct 31, 1997

Prepare to enter a world "torn asunder" by timeless, unresolved conflicts--a world of incomparable beauty, intrigue, and betrayal. Prepare to go to Riven. Journey through vast, awe-inspiring landscapes, where clouds sit nestled in a deep blue sky and the rolling sea waters shimmer from bright morning sunlight. But be forewarned: nothing is quite as it seems.

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For people trapped in books these guys build a lot of weird stuff

I kept trying to convince people to play Outer Wilds because it's Riven in outer space. So, if it helps now that Outer Wilds blew up, it's Outer Wilds in... Not outer space. It nails its own liminal sense of atmosphere, and one contentious puzzle aside is an extremely enjoyable anthropological puzzler. Would probably recommend Myst for the relevant lore background bits.

finally puts (your) food on the table

My other favourite puzzle game, but this time it's incredibly natural puzzles where your task is to understand a society

I'd barely even played Myst when I discovered Riven. I took the plunge regardless and found an experience that still resonates with me decades later. It really has nothing to do with the story of Riven or any of the other Myst games. I simply lose myself in the atmosphere. I can picture that world as if it was a real place that I was wandering about. This is a game that I can feel.

Not as strong as 'Myst'. The soundscape is cutting-edge, and allows for more sophisticated puzzles. The puzzle design is abstruse and the clues are disparate. Unlike the first game's five maps, 'Riven' is one big map, and so the gameplay is a bit less engaging as the scope of the puzzles is a bit overwhelming. The story isn't as involving or captivating as the first game either, and sometimes a bit confusing. Like fuck am I gonna read 30 pages of journals, not least with that shitty cursive handwriting.