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Play OverviewPlay Overview

Heaven's Vault (2019) is a communication adventure game you play an archaeologist translating an ancient alien language whose decrypting weaves through an unfolding drama. While doing real linguistic work you interact with companions and locals. Your choices can open or close vast swathes of investigative opportunities. In turn, this directs the branching narrative in different ways. Intelligent guesswork is required to translate a large number of inscriptions while deciphering the motivations of those around you. An ingenious timeline documents every move, and a brief synopsis each time you start playing keeps things accessible even to infrequent players.

Like real archaeology, you need multiple runs through the game to fully decipher the language and the artifices you discover. Revisiting in this way, after completing the game, sheds new light on the importance and meaning of what you discover while exploring.

It’s a unique and meticulous mystery-solving experience, worth playing not only for a branching story and interactive puzzles, but in how much it trusts and empowers the player to follow (unless they get side-tracked) the complex and mature narrative.

There is also a two-part novel series penned by the game's narrative designer, Jon Ingold. This novelization retells the game's narrative, delving more broadly into the mysteries of the Nebula and more deeply into the backstories of protagonist Aliya Elasra and her robot companion, Six. Each book is about 300 pages and available in hard or soft cover.

Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Heaven's Vault 4 years ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 9 weeks ago.
Too complex for your family? There are lots of games similar to Heaven's Vault. Here are some easier younger-rated games:

Play StylePlay Style

This is an Adventure and Communication game with Brain Game, Narrative, Point-and-Click, Puzzle, Sequencing and Traversal elements. This is a single-player game.


Play Time: This game will take between 18 hours and 22 hours to complete. The time to finish the game varies greatly because of its diverging nature but is around 18 hours. To linger and see everything, or replay to experience different avenues or missed characters, will take considerably longer.

You can access a Story+ mode after you have finished the game once. This enables all Ancient language translated to be carried over to the new game which can lead to new parts of the story and lore being discovered.

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Content Rating

Rated PEGI 7 for violence against humans that is not shown but is implied. This game contains a scene in which two humans fight using wooden weapons. This scene is not that animated and the violence is not clearly shown, but it is implied that at one point, one of these characters is hurt by the other.

Skill Level

10+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. You need patience and persistence to dig into the story and characters here. The language construction aspect of the game needs skills like pattern matching and sequencing.


Heaven's Vault usually costs £8.99 to £19.99.

Heaven's Vault

Steam Store PC £19.99

Heaven’s Vault

PlayStation Store PS4 £17.99
Switch Store Switch £8.99
There are no additional in-game purchases, loot boxes, adverts or subscription costs.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 16/04/2019

Out Now: PC, PS4 and Switch

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Players: 1

Genres: Adventure, Communication (Brain Game, Narrative, Point-and-Click, Puzzle, Sequencing and Traversal)

Accessibility: 20 features

Components: 3D Third-Person

Developer: Inkle Studios (@InkleStudios)

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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