Played The Suicide of Rachel Foster. Tough one for me. In terms of whether I recommend it not.
The atmosphere of the haunted hotel is great, especially during day 7. I played it with regular speakers, not in headphones, and I think this was a right decision for me, because I would have been creeped out way more with all the sounds of the game.
The story is... Mostly good. It has some twists even. I do not think I like the ending, though. There is a very particular action, that Nicole (main character) takes, which is seems out of place. I understand the stress and potential nervous break she might have gotten here, but I do not think it was that great. Or perhaps the game did not deliver the Nicole's psychological status good enough. Or rather... Not at all.
And that's why I am unsure if I would recommend the game. While the story is good, narrative design is lacking. The gameplay is lacking.
Firstly, it's inconsistent in its interface. Sometimes the objects, that should not be interactive at the moment are hidden (that is cursor does not recognize them), sometimes they are showing only the object name/description, sometimes, you can "observe" them, but not interact, and sometimes they do show proper icon, but it's greyed out. Too many signs of the same thing.
Secondly, there are objects that show their name, but can't be interacted through out the whole game. What is the purpose of those objects? And why I can interact with objects, that have nothing to do with the plot, like a sponge or tube of toothpaste? I am ok with allowing user to spin useless stuff just for the sake of it, but why other stuff can't be spun?
Thirdly, just overall way the story is being delivered and how that delivery fits into actual gameplay. You see, ALL the story is delivered through dialogue with Irvin (a voice that will follow you through the whole game) and I am not against this approach overall (BioShock did something very similar, in fact), but... Again, it's inconsistent.
Dialogues are too condensed. There are a lot of them. Which kind of ruins the atmosphere at times. Of course, you can wander about a bit more, looking into all the nooks and crannies (which I was not inspired to do at all), to spread them out, but this just confirms the inconsistency: if this is linear story, experience should be more or less the same regardless.
Then there are moments, when there is a long dialogue during which you have absolutely nothing to do. And nothing to look at even. Except some empty gray (or not) walls. I remember, that in aforementioned BioShock some dialogues were also relatively long, but in most cases (if not all of them) there was also something happening on screen. Here - not so much, which is painful during one of the last "messages" closer to the end. This breaks otherwise good dynamics.
But what's worse... Those dialogues do not tell you enough of the backstory or the feelings of the characters. There are a lot of "unnecessary" things in them (which is a good thing in this case: the dialogues are quite natural sounding, the actors did a great job), but they lack more important ones, that could properly explore the characters. And if not done with dialogues, this could have been done through... Objects, that you can't properly interact with. They should have done something like what DONTNOD does in their games, when most interactive objects, at least, get some comments from characters.
Oh, and there is also that feature, where you can select dialogue options and it is also inconsistent. Sometimes you have 2 options, but the default one is selected instantly, even though the "timer" has not run out, sometimes you have just one option, sometimes you have multiple options, but you have to choose them one by one and break immersion with making a separate call for each one of them.
So, yeah. A tough one. It is a good story. Great atmosphere, sound design and voice acting. But as a game... Devs need a better narrative designer or, at least, QA. Well, they can contact me, if they need help with that. For now, though, I will recommend this game only if you want to spend 3 to 5 hours in a creepy hotel and then forget about that for the rest of your life.