The Magic Circle is a game made by Studio Question. It is about the process of making a game, and the difficulties that come with that process. The game itself is set inside a game that has been in development hell for a long time. It has a crappy, quarreling dev team, a fanatical fanbase, and a terribly designed game space.
The game is about how the magic circle, the idea that the game has its own space where our reality doesn’t interfere, doesn’t exist, because the game is clearly being affected by real world problems. It is built around the story of the stagnant game and the ways it could be better. The game within the game, also called the Magic Circle, is supposed to be a critique of the typical heroes journey and all the dramatic cliches that story writers include in their games, and how all that doesn’t work.
You play as the main character of the game within the game, able to mess with the game’s “code” editing creatures, moving, deleting, and recreating features in the landscape, and interacting with the devs. All of this is made to seem really open, but it’s also very railroady. You never notice this while playing because the game is just so fun and so strong narratively.