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Old 08-07-2012, 03:20 AM   #106
g00nzer
 
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There was one more thing that caught my attention. In the last chapter, when you approach the parts of the wrecked car with the candles surrounding it, you hear a very strange sound. Anyone have any ideas on what that could have been?
You can hear it in this video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=adyF3oTCWU8
He starts approaching the car parts at 3:05.
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Old 08-07-2012, 07:00 AM   #107
Irongiant666
 
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You get those sounds in various places - they appear to be radio signals (perhaps because of the proximity of the aerial?).
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Old 08-07-2012, 10:46 AM   #108
g00nzer
 
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I never quite understood what the aerial was. What is he referring to?
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Old 08-07-2012, 12:10 PM   #109
Irongiant666
 
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The aerial = the beacon, ie the tower with the red flashing light which you end up jumping off.
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Old 08-07-2012, 02:55 PM   #110
g00nzer
 
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Oh, I gotcha, do you think anyone could translate the transmissions somehow?
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Old 11-23-2012, 06:04 PM   #111
smili
 
 
 
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Just walked through this game the first time. Wanted to add to this post: Spoiler:
----
Spoiler:
Is it possible the protagonist is the drunk driver seen in third person? I got that as a possible meaning given the guilt.

----

Last edited by smili: 12-04-2012 at 04:18 PM. Reason: fix spoiler formatting
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Old 11-23-2012, 10:30 PM   #112
liam24
 
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It seems pretty clear that the island is the protagonist's body. Given that, it's interesting to note that in the same way that Paul (who was developing yogurt) was in a collision with him, a ship carrying yogurt became wrecked upon the island.

Also, if you don't want to replay the game, you can cheat a bit and just listen to all the sound files. Go to your Steam Library, right click on Dear Esther, select Properties -> Local Files -> Browse Local Files… and then navigate to dearesther/sound/island/. A couple of these are music files or sound effects, but otherwise they're all the voice recordings in mp3 form.
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Old 11-26-2012, 05:24 PM   #113
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I just played, great game - came here to read theories. I read through a few pages and see a lot of people speculating that Esther was the wife or random car accident person. In my play through, in the beginning, exploring the beach around the lighthouse, the protagonist says Esther was his daughter.

Something like: "When you were born, a red birthmark covered half of your face, your mother said that no one knew what to say so you cried to fill the vacuum. I always admired that about you, and went on to create situations where you'd use your talent (of crying to fill a void?)."

Later on, the protagonist mentions something about "when I finally met you, 6 years old."

So, I went through the entire story assuming Esther was his daughter. And she was killed by a drunk driver. The protagonist (father) is always saying "come back" when you fall into deep water or when the game really ends at the very end.....I assumed he was speaking to his child, and obsessed with finding the drunk driver who caused her accident (or did he cause the accident that killed his own child?)

Anyway, sorry if this has been discussed before but I did't see a mention of the "Esther is his daughter" in the pages I read & I didn't realize there was a changing narrative, now I want to play again!
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Old 12-01-2012, 11:51 PM   #114
alphyna
 
 
 
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I really, really can't agree with everyone dubbing Esther "Donelly" and Paul "Jakobson". They seem to be four diferent characters to me, although my arguments may seem a bit shaky.

Donelly and Jakobson are historical figures, and the narrator tells us about their lives in certain factual detail. Historical detail, even somewhat boring. With dates and all. I don't really believe that's how metaphors/fantasies are constructed. There's little emphasis on personality (parallels come in, as with everything in the story, but later). If Jakobson and Donelly were imagined, wouldn't their stories grow from some symbols, of which there is plenty? Like someone was 21 years old or something. But no — their introduction is much more textbook-like.

So why "Esther Donelly and Paul Jakobson"? Well, the answer is in the final monologue.

Quote:
Who was Jakobson, who remembers him? Donnelly has written of him, but who was Donnelly, who remembers him? I have painted, carved, hewn, scored into this space all that I could draw from him. There will be another to these shores to remember me. I will rise from the ocean like an island without bottom, come together like a stone, become an aerial, a beacon that they will not forget you.
It really seem to me that the main theme here is that in the end history know no personalities, only solid things, and the only things himans leave behind are also solid. Jakobson and Donelly are only remembered by the things — the books, the sheds, the caves, the island. There is a generation between Jakobson and Donelly, but for the narrator they kinda blur together into a single "historical" timeline. It's only logical that Esther, Paul and the narrator will become just historical figures for those who come next, and thus it's not really that needed to differentiate among them all. "Esther" and "Donnelly" may be a single person for someone living 200 years in the future. Humans die and blur, it doesn't matter; only the stones do.
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Old 08-05-2015, 11:44 PM   #115
BoneShackles
 
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My Theory

Hey guys, I know I'm a little "late to the party" but I literally just finished this game and I have to say...wow. Just brilliant.

Just a few things I wanted to mention/say:
To me, as soon as I finished it, I viewed in that the player was the driver that was driving with Esther when she died. The island represents his mind/thoughts as he is in the hospital fighting for his life. Everything in it, the locations, the markings in the caves, the shrines, all represent things in his mind. They sort of manifest themselves in a landscape collage. The diagrams of chemical symbols of alcohol and the drugs he took, the drawings of nerve cells, the pictures, the Biblical verses painted on the landscape, representing his memory of that passage about Paul. The life of Jacobson manifested as a house and a place on the island. The scene when you are underwater and see the scene of the accident. When you go too far into water, you see flashes of the radio tower, a sort of foreshadowing to the future of his death.

Another thing is that on one of the beaches, there is a diagram of the Fibonacci sequence, Now, the number 21 is mentioned a few times in the narrative involving the time being technically "dead" (think Paul). The Fibonacci spiral corresponds to multiple sized tiles, the largest of which corresponds to the number 21.

I believe the entire journey of the game is this main character traveling through his mind as his brain goes through the process of dying. As he mentioned involving Paul, hallucinations and delusions. He ascends up the mountain, seeing his memories and thoughts along his journey as he heads towards the blinking light at the top.

I also believe that the letters to Esther may even be mainly metaphorical. It is quite possible that they don't represent real letters that he even sent and that they are thoughts of her and things he wants to say to her. The thoughts he has of her are manifested as letters, folded into boats that float in a sort of infinite ocean of his mind.

As he ascends the radio tower, he reaches the final stage of brain death and as he leaps off, he becomes a bird and flies off into the darkness, joining with Esther's "jet stream" and as we hear the final and long beep of the medical equipment and go into complete darkness, he passes away because of his infection(s).

Everything that the island is and the entire story take place in just a single event/instance in the real world.

You guys are very welcome to rip apart my theory(ies)! Thanks!
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