·  Renowned gaming journalist hands out top rating for free-to-play social game

·  Echo Bazaar “Better than Infocom classics”

·  World building comparable to Bioshock and Red Dead Redemption.

Veteran games journalist Tom Chick has penned an astonishing five star review of the tiny browser game Echo Bazaar

Writing on, Chick described the steampunk-flavoured  text adventure  as:

“Superlative... every bit as vividly drawn as the worlds built by Rockstar in Red Dead Redemption, or Irrational in Bioshock, or Supergiant in Bastion.”

However, for Failbetter Games' indie writers and developers, the highest praise was to be compared favourably with classic Infocom games, the gold standard in text adventures.

“I don’t remember the writing in those games being this good,” Chick writes, “although perhaps I was too young to appreciate it. But I don’t think any of the Infocom text adventures visited a place as vividly imagined and darkly memorable as Fallen London.”

Chick is a respected games journalist and critic, former editor-in-chief of the Sci Fi Channel's much-missed gaming blog Fidgit, and the main force behind the Quarter to Three games community. He’s not the first to be delighted by the unique charms of Echo Bazaar. The Guardian described the game as “marvellously atmospheric”, while no less an authority than the New York Times hailed it as “far and away the best browser game of today,” while The Escapist magazine named it their best browser game of the year.

Whether sleuth, spy, seducer or trader in souls, Echo Bazaar lets players be whoever they want to be whilst finding their way through a vast and complex gameworld, rich with secrets and scandals alike. With uniquely narrative-driven gameplay, Echo Bazaar blurs the line between interactive fiction and social gaming, enabling the player to make difficult choices with real story consequences. The game currently boasts more than half a million words and hundreds of hand drawn illustrations, and it is growing every day.

Notes for editors

A dangerous cadre of wild-eyed narrative engineers, Failbetter Games was founded by Alexis Kennedy and Paul Arendt to develop narrative driven social games and interactive digital storytelling. Their first game, Echo Bazaar is an awarding-winning handful of Lovecraftian Victoriana set in Fallen London, once the capital of the British Empire and now home to the Bazaar. Play it here:

Failbetter recently collaborated with Random House publishing on the Night Circus, an interactive storybased on Erin Morgenstern’s bestselling novel. The studio is currently working on Machine Cares! - a serious game on the subject of death and interpersonal relationships - for Channel 4 Education.

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