Gone Home Is Beautiful And You Should Play It

Possibly the most descriptive title I’ve done yet, and the most succinct and honest argument I can come up with.

Mystery.

Gone Home is brought to us by the clever minds over at The Fullbright Company, and you can find the game either on Steam, or over on its own homepage. Available for Windows, Mac and Linux. I will grant that I was initially hesitant because of the price, but you just have to trust me that it’s worth it.

If you want to know a little bit more, I will try to oblige in a spoiler-free manner, but as Chris ‘Campster’ Franklin said in his video, this is a game best gone into blind.

I will have to drop some ‘spoilers’ as to the set-up of the game, but not more than you can find on the homepage. You have been abroad for a year, and when you come home the house is empty. Through navigating in first-person mode and examining the rooms of the house you try to figure out what has happened and where everyone is.

The atmosphere is fantastic, and immersed me like a sponge in water. For the best effect, you might want to play in a dark room with the curtains drawn. But even as the sun started rising and bleeding through into my room, I was completely lost in the world I was moving through and experiencing.

From here you're on your own.

What greets you after the opening.

It is a bold claim, but I will say that Gone Home is the most human game I have ever played. It shows how a narrative can be told in a way unique to videogames, and the story felt both well-written and authentic to me. It felt like I was learning about actual human beings.

This is a mystery well worth exploring. That’s all I have to say. I hope you find it as enjoyable as I did.

~Wulf

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Posted on August 18, 2013, in Games and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Got to ask: does the game at all rely on a sense of dread/creepyness? I like the idea of walking around a house picking up objects and slowly developing a sense of the environment – but I don’t want to be ‘uncomfortable’ while doing so. (I do not like “horror” games, not at all.) I guess it’s a bit like the difference between hearing the floorboards creak beneath your own steps versus hearing creaking noises from beyond a wall :/

    • I am unsure of how much I want to reveal here, but I will try to answer.

      As you play there is a quite a storm going on outside. Rain, wind, the works. There was a reason I made sure to turn on *every* light I found, after all. But… I’d say the sense of dread actually diminishes the more you play, and you get more familiar with the house.

      Even just saying that feels like spoiling too much, but hopefully it helps.

  2. (To clarify: from what I’ve heard, it sounds like the game doesn’t rely on terror (jump scares, that kind of shit), and isn’t meant as a “horror” game (though as it seems to be about understanding what happened to these people and this place, it’s probably more fitting of the term horror (viz dread/terror/horror distinction) than the vast majority of so-called “horror” games are).

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