I am writing this in August 1, 2008. As of the writing of this post this page is completely and absolutely wrong in its game list and its description. The writer of this page is in fact completely oblivious as to what a narrator is. So I have written this post to serve as a guideline. It will be a long post and it will be a very complex post. If you do not wish to read it nor the article's description as to what an unreliable narrator is (after I edit it, right now it is colossally wrong), please refrain from adding a game. I will do my best to keep this article as simple as possible as someone without an education in literature may be able to grasp. I also tried to make this post as spoiler free as possible: most unreliable narrators you see here are quite obviously unreliable at the beginning of the movie or story.
Now to begin:
What is a narrator?
A Narrator is an entity within a story that tells the story to the audience. In literature Narrators are pretty much clear cut out and obvious. They are the voice through which the author conveys its message. They can be character narrators (those are characters and narrators in the story), third person narrators (omniscient and limited), multiple focalized narrators, and many more. However once we translate the concept of narrator to a film it becomes more complex. A narrator in film is commonly presented as a voice over that drives the story forward, it is generally third person omniscient.
Narrators in Literature
Pretty easy to figure out, jsut grab any book.
Narrators in Movies
Henry Hill in Goodfellas
Narrators in GamesThere are no good examples I can remember
What is an unreliable Narrator?
Well first of all there are no reliable narrators. We can asses the reliability of a narrator through what he tells us, shows us, and does. An unreliable narrator is a narrator whose words cannot be trusted. Why? There can be a multitude of reasons I'll name a few of which I've seen, the narrator is: a liar, a demented person, a retarded person, wishes to confuse you on purpose, has a certain disability (blindness, deafness), is a drug addict and his senses are whacked, etc. But unreliable characters are not unreliable narrators. Most of the times in movies (and most liekly games) unreliable narrators will be characters within the story or the protagonists, not so much the omniscient third person types of narrators.
U.N.s in Literature
Patrick Bateman in American Psycho, if you pick up something by Borges you normally get unreliable narrators, ooooh also Pedro Paramo has a very good unreliable narrator you won't know what the fuck is going on half the time.
U.N.s in Movies
The Narrator in Fight Club, Guy Pearce in Memento, Patrick Bateman in American Psycho.
U.N.s in Games
Solid Snake in MGS4 and 1 (when he is mind controlled by Mantis) and I quite frankly am not entirely sure, I cannot recall ever playing a video game and going: this is a clear cut case of an unreliable narrator. Why? Because games are different than most art forms. They rely on gameplay and having easy to use controls. So you can't really make a really artistic game in which the main character is blind and have people bumping around, or having psychodelic hallucinations because that jsut makes crappy gameplay.
Now some games which might be aded to the list but I haven't played them myself so I'm not sure. I hear that in Kane & Lynch one of the characters sees civilians as cops and shoots everyone (THAT IS AN UNRELIABLE NARRATOR IF I HAVE HEAR CORRECTLY), I think you could also put down GTA III with mind altering drugs that change gameplay, and GTA IV with drunk driving that changes gameplay as well, but those examples do not really make an unreliable narrator you need someone you can't trust at all to be unreliable.
What are not unreliable Narrators
Unreliable Narrators are not unreliable characters nor characters whose personalities or identities are shown to be different in a plot twist. To use an example the Joker in the Dark Knight movie is an extremely unreliable character, he is a pathological liar, is constantly reinventing himself and anything he says cannot be taken at face value, however he is NOT an unreliable narrator even if he lies about his origin story in the movie. Why? BECAUSE HE IS NOT A NARRATOR! For example the characters or Requiem for a Dream are all drug addicts who do not see reality entirely well at certian points of the movie, are they unreliable narrators? No because they are characters and never narrate anything.
Also for example in Assassin's Creed your master turns out to be the bad guy. THIS IS A PLOT TWIST NOT AN UNRELIABLE NARRATOR. Again because he is a character not a narrator.