Dec 26, 2013I'm not going to say this "isn't a game" like lots of other people here. Art/mood/atmospheric stories are just as worthy as "games" as the shooter kill-em-all games they churn out near endlessly. In fact, most of my favourite gaming experiences are games with a similar emotional and atmospheric tone to them. But this game in particular, in my opinion, was poorly executed.
Let me explain. The game begins in a foreboding way, entering an empty old house in the middle of a storm, one of the first clues involving a young girl crying over an answering machine. As you go on, the mood continues its intriguing pull, taking you through a father obsessed with conspiracy theories, the brief story of the "ghost" of the house, and other dark family secrets that could really go anywhere. As you follow the clues you gradually discover the sister's lesbian relationship and the trials they go through until you reach the very end, an attic surrounded by red lights with a note saying "Do not enter when lights are on". What horrible thing awaits you here? With all the buildup it's bound to be something intriguing.
Nope. All that you find in the attic is a saccharine "twist" ending where the sister's girlfriend realizes she wants to be together more than any of her other life aspirations and they run away together. None of the foreboding atmosphere, the unsettling clues, any of it, pays off whatsoever. All of the families problems are resolved in a sugary sweet success and everyone goes home (yuk yuk) happy.
Now, I feel I should clarify that I am very much pro-gay relationships. But basically, I felt betrayed by this game. It's like following an engaging abduction mystery only to find out that the victim wasn't kidnapped at all and was simply off visiting her mum in the next town. You shouldn't have to hijack another genre and pretend your game is one thing and then shift towards something else at the last minute in order to make it seem more compelling a story than it actually is. All of the red herrings just really made the ending feel cheap and essentially made all of the buildup and excitement I'd been feeling disappear in a disappointing huff. The story was not deep or profound. It relied on faking an atmosphere in order to get a point across that, these days, I don't really think needs to be snuck in under the radar anymore.
The disappointment alone means I cannot in good faith recommend this to anyone else.… Expand
Oct 17, 2013Where do you start with this game or so called game.
It's nice enough looking I suppose but I can't help feeling it's riding on a PC wave because of it's subject matter which is fair enough but the critics have gone way way overboard on this work because of that.
The truth is it's a poor example of digital media that is so over hyped that you feel like the little boy who screams the emperor has no clothes. This game will be important to some and that's fair enough but not to point out the games many flaws and indeed it's price for it's length as legitimate criticisms for the fear of being singled out as a bigot shows me where culturally we are at the present moment unfortunately. For the majority of people this game will grate and make you feel ripped off.
Game critics should be ashamed of themselves but unfortunately political correctness makes them bold and arrogant and thus not given an honest review which I was under the impression that was their primary function.
I would advise people to buy Dear Esther intead of this game unless the subject matter is relevant to you.… Expand
Apr 6, 2014This "game" is not actually a game, it's a very short interactive movie with lesbians. An interactive movie where you walk around and read notes for one hour. Critics wouldn't even look at Gone Home if it was a book, critics would ridicule Gone Home if it was a movie, but since it's a game and you can press "WASD" then it's suddenly a masterpiece. And that's why many people are angry, because of the hype train (a hype you might understand if you read spoilers).
"Story" is predictable and nothing happens. For most of the game you hope that there is some great mistery or something shocking, but you will receive nothing except boredom and disappointment. Expect nothing mind blowing, nothing that will touch you, disturb you, invoke any emotion or make you think. The only emotions I felt (besides boredom) is a slight feeling of nostalgia (90ies), but even that wasn't enough to keep me interested for more than 5 seconds.
There is no replay value once you know the whole story (which can be summarized in one sentence) and there are so many books that people can read more than once, even if those books are average. That's pretty much how boring the game is.
If you want a well written and enjoyable indie game/interactive movie, then you should try The Stanley Parable, an well written interactive movie-game that makes you think about....everything. Gone Home numbs your brain.
If you want to see an example of a well written love story, then you should watch V ffor Vendetta movie and wait for scenes that could have been done with minimal budget, but are a masterpiece. One of the main character is reading notes written on a toilet paper and it's too bad that I cannot reveal more without posting spoilers, but these short scenes are better written than entire Gone HOme.
Read, watch or play anything else. Don't waste your money on Gone Home… Expand
Sep 16, 2013It's an interesting improvement on the "Dear Esther" Formula, you walk through very linear path without any challenge or exact goal set, other than getting the game over with. The game has a sort of mediocre plot, all the characters are extremely flat except the pink haired (who I've already forgotten the name of due to the game barely keeping my attention) I'm actually pretty sure all the hype around this 2 hour piece of that feels more like a tech demo, is because the game thinks it's being controversial with the lesbian but honestly it isn't. The biggest drawback is there isn't a sprint button so I had to drag myself slowly around this mansion house listening to drawn out monologues about a teenager experiencing hormone changes. I kept on thinking I might encounter another character or something throughout the game with the lightning and empty house building up suspense, but no the entire game is you walking around a dumb house for 2 hours. The Shrek Gameboy game tops this … Expand
Nov 6, 2013Originally I played mostly adventure games...I have found them to be more attractive due to the fact they are story driven...And a good story is always has been a winning factor while considering to play game... With that in mind I picked this game looking for a story that would drive me into the the ending without stopping for coffee...But reality kicked in and I wasn't able to finish more than one room exploring each day...Exploring the house was quite a tedious job not different from any real job you need to do on a daily basis... The game offered me one more tedious job to do...Well,finally after a month or so I made it into the final conclusion of the game & all I had to say was good riddance....one less tedious job to do....And with that I turned Gone Home to Gone forever with the wind... One of the weakest stories I have ever encountered...… Expand
Jun 26, 2014Hello there childrens, join me today for the most boring, akward, not-interesting journey about Sam, some girl with no personality whatsoever!
As first, let's get this through: this is a first person adventure, so I wasn't expecting much action or big stuff goin on since it's all based on the plot.
But why do you even make a game like this if your plot it's usless? We'll focus more on this later.
The map it's surprisingly good looking, and there are lot of stuff you can interact with, and most of them will bring you back the 90s feel (such as VHS, cassette tapes etc). Most of the models looks very good, and the graphic is fine.
I don't really know what to say about the soundtrack. Sometimes it's really really good and it work well with the moment, sometimes well.. it's just silly. A sad song pops up almost out of nowhere, or you find a cassette tape with a song that will make your ear bleed and grow a mouth that will ask you to stop playing the game.
The voice acting it's good, but in the end, there is just 1 actress, the main protagonist talking. She's good, but doesen't help the story to look interesting. Also, her laugh makes me unconfortable.
And now, the main thing about the game. The story. Short, predictable and pointless. ****
You have this setting: you're Sam, a girl that it's coming back home after a while to find out that no one it's home. But why? We'll see that later on.
You have to explore the home to find out more about your past and to what happened to everyone. Turns out you're "not attracted to men" and you had a long complicated story with your partner. A love story that for most of the time it's **** akward to listen and really made me unconfortable BUT NOT because of the sexual iterest into someone of the same gender, don't get me wrong, it was akward BECAUSE IT GET REALLY **** RIDICULOUS FOR MOST OF THE EVENTS SHE'S NARRATING. And most of this event ends up with her crying. What a surprise.
In the end, to be honest, the story could have been interesting or a little more enjoyable if something big whould happen, like some trama plot. But nope, in the end they tear apart, they never saw each other, teh edn. Boo-hoo ending I guess. Not working at all.
Oh and what happened to the family, why they leave the house? I dunno. Why, do you care? Should we care? I think the story it's already good without some explanation. Effin-great.
Also, this game looks easy as it can gets. There are almost no puzzles, just a bunch of combination or paper that tells you where to find hidden spots (just 2 or 3 in the whole game) and it's super short. I've beat this game in 77 minutes. And what's the best part? If you like to mess around, you could easly find the main hidden spot, get the key, go to the attic and beat the game in 3 minutes! Who designed this **** Aha!
Final rating: 2/10
You probably need to be some Tumblr feminist girl to enjoy this story. Probably even them find this game offensive.
Oh, almost forgot, this won "Best PC game" over "Paper, please" and "Stanley Parable". Good.… Expand
Oct 22, 20131-Technically is well below the level of other games for example amnesia, how have the face so hard to put the price of 20 €?
2-The replayability is null. Expend 20€ in a game for play 1 or 2 times in your life.
3-The game is very slow and boring at many times. Need more interest, more suspense, more intuitive gameplay and story less pretentious.
Oct 22, 2013Really I don't understand the rating of this game. So much praise for the story, but there it is pretty straight forward and generic (and I think was supposed to be a "twist" really can't count as one in the 21st century). In addition to that, the entire game took less than 90 minutes on the first playthrough... It was really just uninteresting for what the cost of the game is. On top of that, the atmosphere was a farce (don't be fooled by hints of ghosts and the occult). The scariest thing in the game is a light bulb burning out. There is really no saving grace to make this game more than a two, which it earned on the fact that it was well put together. If it ever shows up for $5 or less, go for it. Basically you're renting a mediocre movie.… Expand
Nov 27, 2013First off, I just wanted to say I tried this game because I love non-conventional games with a great story. I knew that Emily Carrol's wife worked a lot of this game. I love Emily Carrol's stories, and have read a bit of what her wife wrote and really enjoyed it. I thought I would really enjoy this, especially since it's got some high praising reviews. And there were some really good qualities to this game, such as the graphics, and the voice acting.
Here are a few things I wish I had known. First, the main storyline is LGBT based, geared towards seeking understanding from those who are straight. I am guessing this is why it got so many positive reviews (if you hate LGBT propaganda, people assume you're a narrow-minded, homophobic bigot). But it was so focused on the lesbian aspect of it, that it detracted with what might've been an incredible story. I mean, if you were to replace the lesbian couple with a straight one, the story would've been a dull, overly dramatic teenage love story (think Twilight). As for the story itself, there is wonderful voice acting with a lot of emotion (Twilight itself was very well written, in my opinion. But the story, and practically everything else about it sucked). The story was just too predictable. I was hoping for quite a bit more. I mean, it started off pretty fantastic. The lights flicker in the home, there are secret passages and corridors and there are few hints to a haunting, which make it very eerie in the beginning. You hear a lot about the rest of the family, such as a deceased uncle who used to own the place. But none of that is explained, or seems to be anything but an incomplete side story to the lesbian action.
The story is so predictable, I didn't expect it. And gosh, can I say it again, it is TOO teenage-lesbian-love focused!!!!! I mean, the one thing that did turn me for a loop was wandering into a bathroom and finding splotches of blood on the bathtub. Is this ever explained? Nooo... I'm trying not to include any spoilers, but there is no record of anyone bleeding in a tub!!! There are also eerie moments, where there are creeks here and there, and the attic looks downright horrifying with the red lights signaling that the dark room is in use. Throughout the whole story, you're expecting some tragedy and deeper plot. I mean, you're searching your new home for a trace as to where your parents and sister have gone. Turns out, your parents have left for a perfectly reasonable and well needed "break" to help sort things out.
Here is what you discover about your sister. She's 16-17, moves into a new neighborhood with a new school. She is dealing with teenage emotion, and feels like everybody hates her, and her parents don't understand what she's going through (again, Twilight, anyone?). She falls in love with (not a vampire) a lesbian, they have sex, lie to their parents, write love letters, lead some teenage anarchy rebellion protest at school that gets them suspended, she tells her parents (they just don't understand!), tragically their lives go separate ways (she gets accepted into a college writing program, and her lover joins the army), after a few days apart they realize they just can't live without each other and decide to run away. It was an awful story. If it was a straight boy and a girl, it would be awful. But apparently because it's got LGBT in it, that makes it good? I don't think so. I want any LGBT out there to know that while I don't understand all that you go through, I think many of you are wonderful people and I wish more people could see past that. However, I think there are better ways to reach understanding and acceptance. I didn't want a game focused on it. I don't think it leads to greater understanding to focus on it in a teenage, mushy, sexually hyper story. I mean, everyone knows what it's like to fall in love for the first time as a teenager. You're obsessive, your hormones are raging, and unless your careful you do stupid things. I didn't feel that way at the time, but I am so grateful I had parents who knocked some sense into me, and would "tread upon my rights as a human being" to keep me from being an idiot. I also have to attribute some of this to the saving grace of God. As an older brother I would hands down be furious if my teenage sister lied to our parents, had sexual relations with anyone at all, threw out her future and then ran away! We've all felt like our parents were restricting us, telling us what to do, who didn't understand the power of love, who were upset and in shock because they didn't understand (gay or not)... it makes for a bad story, albeit one we can relate to.
1 star for Emily Carrol's wife. You both do great work. I loved the graphics! I love the emotion. But still the story and game play was sub par. I know you can do better.… Expand
Nov 27, 2013Slow-paced, exploration-heavy adventure games are among my absolute favorite, so I was positively thrilled during the first half or so of Gone Home. It sports decent graphics, terrific atmosphere, great voice acting, and a sleek, totally immersive interface that lets you examine almost every object. Add a deserted old house that you're free to explore at your leisure, a creepy subplot involving the previous owner, and we're all set for great adventure!
If only. After an hour or so, I noticed that not much had happened in the way of actual gameplay. Reading notes and documents had been so entertaining, I didn't mind much. But then I started getting the sinking feeling that the game had no intention of delivering on its promises. It wasn't developing into a fully fledged adventure (the inclusion of a limited inventory with completely useless "items" notwithstanding) as I had hoped. Instead, it was morphing into something else.
In a nutshell, the game is an ambush. It is arguably not a game at all. It is, shockingly, a political piece, as carefully and deliberately conceived as it is blatant and ultimately inept. I cannot offer more details without spoiling things, so let's just say that the game's "story" starts veering into "young adult" fantasy territory and it just doesn't let up, right up to the laughable and cringe-worthy finale. Look for no twist, redemption or arc here this is as stereotypical as it gets. In spite of the short length and the overused "lost journal" device, the game even finds the time to take a couple of potshots against a few organizations and institutions; I'll let you guess what its predictable targets are. It's simply hard to believe. Frustratingly, the aspects that COULD have worked beautifully are quickly tossed aside so as not to distract from the main payload.
This is the game's death knell: I'm all for sacrificing gameplay in favor of a compelling story. But Gone Home has neither. You keep waiting for the game to start, and by the time you realize where this is going you've long grown tired of checking every item and opening every panel in search of the next scrap of paper.
As for the story, the designers' agenda permeates the proceedings so thoroughly that you'll likely to be pinned as something or other if you find any fault with it. I may applaud the designers for trying, and for having their heart in the right place, but this is clearly not the way to go. The proof is in the pudding: replace the (non) novelty aspect of the story (i.e., its main gimmick, the one that keeps hitting you over the head) by a more "classical" take, and I have little doubt that you'd be seeing very different ratings from most critics. The last image after the credits is actually enlightening; it tells you that the designers really believe all the trite pap their characters are forced to spout, write and do, with nary a hint of humor or self awareness.
Bottom line: Gone Home feels like a prototype of an adventure/horror game, temporarily populated with a token teenage story and little more. It is, in fact, a very nice prototype. I enjoyed its best bits, but the overall package is a huge disappointment, and in many ways an outright cheat.… Expand
Nov 28, 2013First of all, this is not a game. Just a beautiful love story about blah-blah-blah... There are some things that make a game playable. Not a single one in that story, i prefer to call it "a story". If you're looking for something to spend a few hours without any challenges for your brain, this is a perfect choice. They told us there are many mysteries and things to investigate and explore. Well, the only one secret still remains unsolved, why did i buy that?… Expand
Dec 29, 2013Do not play this game expecting a gripping story or a complex plot. The gameplay is the only thing that this game had going for it, and the gameplay consisted of walking, reading, and moving small objects. The best parts was the ability to pick up most objects, and the navigation of the map. On the other hand, the downsides dominated this small list of good things. The plot was ok, but not exciting, really. There was nothing surprising and it was stereotypical of the time and setting. Some of the mysteries are unsolved, and there is not a satisfying closure. The game is extremely short, which actually does it justice because if you paused playing, you might think there is something exciting to be seen next time you play. That is not the case. I finished this game in just under 2 hours. I do not recommend it and I am glad it was no more than 10 dollars.… Expand
Mar 10, 2014Nice graphics and attention to detail but ridiculously short. No way was is worth 20 dollars. If it was longer it would have been a great game. Compare it to similar old games like Titanic, story out of time, which is now years old and played on machines with a fraction of the capability of modern machines, this is a poor attempt. Unless you have money to burn, don't bother.
May 19, 2014This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I had to sign up for an account just to let people know to avoid this game. It was horrible. Its like reading a little girls diary. At first you think, "oh neat, a ghost game or possible murder game" but it is just a story about her sister becoming a lesbian and running away with her girlfriend. It was a waste of time and money. Avoid this game.… Expand
Jun 14, 2014This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Homosexual Political Correctness must get +3 points from the "professional" critics, because this is a complete disappointment. The game designers wanted to make an eerie haunted house adventure, while the writers wanted a boring lesbian love story.
Seriously, the "big reveal" is that she's a **** Not a vampire-hunting girl team, or a pair of female detectives, they're just typical whiney lesbians. YAWN.....
This isn't 1975 anymore. Homosexuals aren't especially interesting. Discovering your character is a boring **** should not be a game's victory, and is a numbing disappointment after such care was put into haunting atmosphere by the designers.
Save your money and watch an hour of Lifetime on cable.… Expand
Jun 26, 2014I really wish I could take my money back. This game was completely advertised wrong. There is no suspense, no mystery, and no real compelling characters. The only reason I can imagine this game received any critical acclaim was due to the fact they picked a hot topic somewhat controversial social issue and threw it in there, forcing critics to give the game a high review lest they appear to be bigoted and out of touch with society.. There were no new mechanics, including story telling mechanics in this game. In short, the game was flat, boring, and brought nothing new or compelling to the art of video games.… Expand
Jun 9, 2014This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Thanks, Fullbright... Thank you for relegating LGBT issues to being the punch-line of a terribly dreary, repetitive and rather pretentious interactive story and having the gall to charge $20 for the experience.
... End sarcasm mode.… Expand
Feb 7, 2014This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This game i pure crap, sorry is only crap without a game. Nowadays web hype lets sell very well also the pure crap. The story is ridiculous, thunders and bolts and a raining night are there only to allude something is wrong. Yes everything is wrong this "game" or better this interactive romance is boring, and short. Where the **** is the good story? Knowing your sister is lesbian and go away with her gf the day you come back at home after years from Europe? Is this a good ****ing story? If you like to read old book covers, tickets and 3 pages max notes with boring stuff this is your game.
I hope people saying this is a good game are paid from the producer of this game otherwise they are totally dumb.… Expand
Aug 23, 2013Gone Home should be in Barnes&Noble not GameStop. It is interactive fiction and a very short story at that. To sum it up, this "game" doesn't feel like a GAME. This feels more like a drawn out intro to an actual game. After it is done, you might find yourself saying "Is that it? WTF was that? I paid $XX for that? I could have went on Re/max Realty and read a short book while taking a virtual tour of a house.". In other words, like many other of us non-paid gamers have said, either believe the "pro-getting-paid" critics hype or save your money, pick up a short story novel and use your imagination for a graphics processor.… Expand
Jun 8, 2014I went into this game expecting it to be horror. Dark, stormy night, you're home alone and no one is to be found. Once I realized it wasn't, I was like, "well, okay, it's not what I thought, but hopefully it picks up soon.". Nope. It just gets more and more boring. This is not a game. You walk and click, without having any real impact on anything. I felt like a ghost floating around the house getting more and more pissed at my dumb little sister. So you're a teen lesbian in love, that's FINE, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. But you expect me to be okay with her running away with someone who is now AWOL? That is a serious damn crime. It's nice the people writing positive reviews liked the story, but this is supposed to be a game. Something you participate in, help move along. Waste of money, seriously just bad.… Expand
Oct 8, 2013I tried. I genuinely tried to find meaning in this game but it just isn't there. A girl at home with a dot on her forehead...or her eyes? bad graphics, they should have at least shown her body. In a gaming world where everyone is trying something new it isn't unheard of to make a game like this. but the graphics and the boring aura of the game made it BAD
Oct 7, 2013While this game excels in storytelling and is in general a very interesting experience it lacks any real gameplay, it's more an interactive story with a little exploration and puzzle solving.
I must give it a low score due to the price point being so high for few hours of slow entertainment with absolutely no replayability.
I would pay no more than 5 bucks for this game.
Oct 10, 2013I am very disappointed with the critics on this one. Gone Home was misrepresented every step of the way. All of the advertizing implied this was a horror game. It's not. You will find yourself liking this game at the start but that's about it. The story is well done and well executed "until the end" but nothing we haven't seen before "in movies not video games anyway". Anyone who has played this game knows full well its fatal flaws and I don't want to spoil anything about the story. Critic have given this game overwhelmingly positive reviews and that's just scary. The New York Times "people who probably have never played a video game" called this the greatest love story in a video game...SIGH. All I will say is that if this game was made in the mid 90s "when this game was set" the love story would have been edgy but this is 2013! Just setting the game in the 90s doesn't make you "edgy" or "progressive" just boring yes BORING the main problem with this game is just how dull it is. Please don"t wast $20 on this 4 hour long movie with no payoff at the end.… Expand
Oct 23, 2013This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. DO NOT BOTHER SPENDING YOUR MONEY. This game may seem interesting and for the first five minutes it is.
But then the realisation descends that it is some humdrum love story about a lesbian and her girlfriend. There is NO mystery, nothing going on whatsoever. Even a subplot about the house's past owner that is far more interesting is not developed.… Expand
Oct 25, 2013This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. It's not a game, it's an interactive-story. All you do is to rummage your family's belongings to discover what happened. In the game, everything suggest to hide an unexpected, dramatic and emotional secret. But it doesn't
Seriously, this game is a waste of time… Expand
Dec 26, 2013Gone Home is a disappointing experience. While the throwbacks to the 90s are nice, and the house itself is nice to look round, the game's core is its story, and it's here where it fails to impress. Without revealing too much, the story is very pedestrian, and you'll find yourself becoming quite bored; you'll either stop playing about two thirds in or just get it over with as quickly as possible. Not to mention the whole thing takes a few hours to get through and has no replay value whatsoever.
For a game that has nothing else going for it other than its plot, this is a fatal flaw. There's nothing to really recommend here. Avoid.… Expand
Nov 9, 2013Gone home is way overpriced and over-hyped.
I finished the full game in 2 hours. Decided to take it in as an experience. After all when you came in you knew that you will be wandering around a house, collecting mementos and learning about your family. No surprise here, right?
However what you didn't know is that most of its focus will be about your sister. You get to sort of find out what happened to your parents, but I swear, like 80% of all notes I found was about your sister. The thing is it's not even something secret that you find out. The very first thing that you find is essentially her admitting that she is gay. Guess what's in the other notes? "I am gay. I am gay. I love a girl, etc". Is it really a topic that needs this much awareness?
If you're making an exploration game deal in a variety of subjects, present a variety of lives with different problems, not all black and white either, because that's how life goes.
Also if you're a European you might not find this game as enjoyable, because it is mostly dealing in American problems.… Expand
Dec 1, 2013Great atmosphere, great premise...but turned into wasted potential. The story builds you up over the very brief hour or so of gameplay and drops you with only some of the details of the side plot, which was quite honestly the plot that pulled me in, and a fairly lackluster ending to the main plot. The graphics are enough to get by, but really leave you wanting. I honestly thought this may have bee built on the half life 2 engine when first seeing it. This team worked on AAA productions before forming their studio. That they would allow themselves to make something of this quality was really a let down. All in all, the buildup is exciting, but the letdown of the lost side plot and $20 price tag left a horrific taste in my mouth.… Expand
Dec 5, 2013This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. First, let me start this review off by focusing on the general pricing/length of this game. For 20 dollars (or $5 if you purchased it during a Steam sale), you are getting a video game experience that will last no longer than two hours. That's right. 2 hours. The actual interaction with the story last no more than 10 minutes. I could have gotten the same value from interesting stories from browsing forums on the internet.
There isn't much that makes this story unique [SPOILERS START HERE]. A girl gets adjusted to a new life after moving. She meets a fellow classmate. She falls in love with her. They are both lesbian. They date for a year. They run away from home. The end. There is nothing special here. I'm a HUGE reader. I've read visual novels, manga, and over 500 normal novels. This story is truly MEH. Books that are comparable with this game cost a lot less and will have you engaged for 6-8 hours.
But comparing a reading game to other reading forms of entertainment can wait. The most frustrating part about this game is the desperation clicking. I literally went through the mansion clicking everything 2-3 times. I didn't want to miss parts of the story because I got to the end game in 50 minutes. I wasn't even sure if the game was truly complete! I didn't want the money I spent to cheat me even more. The mechanics of the game are just clicking to get a scrap of any mediocre letter or note left by your family. It leaves you in disappointment because a fleshed out story wouldn't leave such a broken trail behind.
There are many experiences that would surpass this gaming experience. Watch an anime (FMA, Steins;Gate, Deathnote), read a book, or check out a visual novel like Clannad. These are all good uses of mediums to tell a great story. Walking through an empty house picking up torn up letters is not. Back to the drawing board guys.… Expand
Dec 23, 2013This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The year 1995 was a very special year in my life, one that I, as a teenager, remember quite fondly. Among my memories of that time, I spent several days at my uncle's large house during the final week of October. His house has always been a place that has stimulated my imagination due to its size, design, and atmosphere a house not unlike the one featured in "Gone Home". From the moment I first heard of the nostalgic setting and period for "Gone Home," I knew I just had to have it.
First, the positives. Although some have taken issue with the graphics, I actually thought they greatly contributed to the game's overall sense of isolation and eeriness. I almost believed I was back in my uncle's house. The game's sound effects are equally beneficial to setting the mood. Playing the game with headphones on, I found myself wondering "What was that?" when I thought I heard someone in another room. And the control, though very basic, is pretty much all you need for a game like this, though I would've liked a "run" feature to help me get around faster.
Now, the negatives. The game is incredibly short. Three hours, done. Once you beat the game, you could replay it, but probably only once. Really, I don't see any point to replaying it even one time. The game's storyline was also very disappointing. I went into this game spoiler-free, so I was really let down that what seemed to be a thriller-mystery quickly revealed itself as a sappy love story that I had zero interest in. At first, I was thinking that maybe Samantha and Lonnie, two outcasts in their school, were going to form a suicide pact and were already dead, but revelations from Sam's diary gradually reveal that the two are lesbians who want to run away together. It's obvious that the game's makers are making a social commentary on homosexual relationships, but it just seems really weird to have that subject matter in a setting that feels more like "Resident Evil" than an after-school special. I also had a major problem with the inclusion of an actual Ouija board in the game. Though you never actually use it, it's there, hidden behind a wall panel. For those who, like me, are very sensitive about such things, this factor alone prevents me from recommending the game to anyone.
For over twenty years, "Battletoads," for NES, was the most overrated game I ever played. Within a few short hours, a new dubious champion was crowned. I really, really wanted to like this game. But, due to its length, story, and mediocre gameplay, I cannot agree with the critics who are singing its praises. In a year full of great independent games, "Gone Home" is not even in the same league as "The Stanley Parable" or "Papers, Please," two games that are not only worthy of their acclaim, but are already modern classics in my eyes. Is this the worst game I've ever played? No, not even close. I wouldn't say it's a bad game, but it's not even good enough for me to call it "just good". It's average. That's all "Gone Home" is, a critically acclaimed, average game. Way to kill my 1995 nostalgia trip, Fullbright.… Expand
Apr 3, 2014I decided to give this game a shot because of the polarized reviews it received, Gone Home has universal critical acclaim but is the subject of much scorn from the gaming community.
In Gone Home you are cast as Samantha, who has just arrived home from an overseas trip.
Gameplay consists of walking around and hunting for objects in the environment, occasionally one of these objects will trigger an audio clip read from a diary. The rest of the story is told through text (letters, invoices ect) and left up to the player to slowly decipher.
There is a decent amount of detail in the house, almost every draw and cupboard is usable and more often than not filled with something to read or a piece of 90's nostalgia, if you didn't grow up in that era then most of the references will be lost on you.
I approached Gone Home with an open mind to give it a fair go, with the intention of playing it through thoroughly, but that experience was cut short when I accidentally stumbled across the endgame state, before uncovering the whole picture. Even after reading everything I came across, I couldn't form much of an interesting story, or any explanation for why the house was empty. Then the thing just ended.
I'm sure your first reaction is "you played it wrong" but I don't feel that's fair. I was punished for exploring an area of the game intently, something that should be met with reward. This is just bad game design at fault; a combination of items should be necessary to achieve the endgame state to avoid reaching it prematurely.
I don't know if a could have enjoyed gone home if things went differently, I'm a huge fan of old school adventure games and not one to rate anything lower for focusing mainly on story, but for me, this wasn't much of anything.
I give Gone Home two stars for trying something different, but overall its an overrated piece of crap.… Expand
Apr 27, 2014Gone Home game - 20$ Can of lighter fluid - 15$ Metal garbage can - 25$ Watching a game that wasted 2 hours of your life burn to hell - Priceless On a side note, it did manage to create an amazing environment to lure you in. However, the praise ends there. Do yourself a favor and don't buy the game. If you did by accident, instead of playing it, have more fun by burning the game onto a CD and then lighter fuild-ing the hell out of it.… Expand
Jun 1, 2014I really wanted to like Gone Home. I love story games and really like the idea of using graphics based games to tell stories like this one. I gave this one points for the atmosphere and the general idea. The house is not as bad as some people are making it out to be. It's full of little bits and bobs that will make you smile if you were growing up during the time it takes place. The voice acting is fantastic. I just wish they would've used all of this to tell a better story and build a better mystery. I had the entire story figured out in the foyer of the house, I just didn't realize that what I had figured out that early was going to be ALL of the story. I'm sure it appeals to some members of a certain demographic (so starved for stories featuring realistically drawn people like them that they'll flock to even this) but, as a member of that demographic myself I found myself entirely let down by the 'big reveal' at the end. Seriously. If story is all you're going to bring to the table in a game, it needs to be good. I want that feeling I get after a good movie or book. After Gone Home, I just felt blank and disappointed. Uninstalled immediately.… Expand
Jun 1, 2014A game with very little gameplay. Interaction is minimal and the length does not justify the 20 dollar price tag. The story was good but nothing deserving of a Pulitzer or any other award. If I want a good story I will always find better writing in literature.
Jun 9, 2014"Mildly interactive fiction" might be a more appropriate term for this software, rather than calling it a game. Honestly, I've seen Japanese visual novels with more actual gameplay than this. Even then, it's not very good at what it actually does. It has no real skill-based elements, no replay value and the narrative isn't even very interesting.
I cannot recommend this at any price, really. If you want a game with story, you're probably better off playing an old Sierra point-and-click adventure. At least, those are more entertaining.… Expand
Dec 1, 2013What a mystery! I don't mean the story, I mean why some reviewers have given this game a high score.
It's too basic, lacking action, not scary at all, very short, and the story will likely only strike a chord with teenage girls going through sexual identity issues. Perhaps this is the reason why some reviewers have been kind, because it gives you a kind of "creepy house game" with some "notes on young lesbian lovers". It's a strange mix, seemingly forced together, but is awkward as a result.
There's some enjoyment to be had with exploring, but soon it becomes apparent that there's nothing much happening with this "game" and that it's basically just a boring story told via a simple "pick up this key"... "walk upstairs"...."open door"... the end.
Anyone who describes this game as "art", either doesn't get out enough, or doesn't know what games are capable of, or has an agenda to push this game for whatever reason. This game could have been a lot more. It feels like level one. Now, where's the rest?… Expand
Nov 9, 2013I'm so happy I bought this at a steam sale with 50 percent off because this was quite frankly, very boring. A video game should always focus on what sets video games apart from other mediums, which is solid gameplay. This is the strong foundation of a good game, so it doesn't matter how good the story is or how many spot on 90's references there are if the game is not engrossing to play. It is NOT engrossing to go around and read notes for two hours.… Expand
Oct 28, 2013I picked up Gone Home cheap after seeing rave reviews of the game and despite such a respectable price; it is apparent that such write-ups are inflated. The game is incredibly bland despite an intriguing and engrossing story. The atmosphere is tense and the setting superb but the overlay gameplay is extremely linear and most exploration is meaningless or pointless. The lack of depth really shows as you steadily progress to the finish in just a couple of hours. The latter part of the game feels extremely rushed as the intrigue declines and the narrative speeds up to a mediocre conclusion.
It's a real shame as the potential here could've lead to a very broad and gripping story but many gamers will be disappointed that the final product is lacklustre at best. It's still a cheap indie game at best but I think the critics have been extremely generous in their scoring as Gone Home lacks in so many areas which could've been developed more in-depth to give a longer and more absorbing game. It's worth a fiver for a rainy weekend but don't expect too much in longevity or drama. A wasted opportunity of what was a promising concept.… Expand
Dec 5, 2013This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I've been looking for a game to play in-between my regular Sims/Skyrim sessions, and this looked like a decent one. I'm a 90's kid (born late 80's actually) and a sucker for "exploration/mystery" type games, plus the 50% Cyber Monday sale didn't hurt either. I played for 2 or so hours first day, and finally got the chance to get back in on Thursday, only to realize I was literally 10 minutes away from completing the whole thing. What a bummer! Seriously, if this game cost 2£ then great. But it was a whopping 8£ with a 50% sale. I have never paid that much for any game that is completable in under 3 hours.. The story was ridiculously predictable as well, I could already predict what was going to the main narrator and her secret friend 20 minutes into playing. I also don't know if it's just me and my machine, but in most rooms I'd get annoying neon-coloured glitchy flashing patches on objects and walls. 4/10… Expand
Dec 20, 2013Maybe I was not in the mood for this kind of game or that my terrible OCD's keep me off from these games
The "game" was cheesy, with a predictable story, overly annoying and too much open stuff up, read and proceed. It felt like an exploration grind for nothing quest, with a story that wouldn't get us closer to the character's emotionally.
To turn the game experience a better one I did one thing: I picked everything I could and would pile it in floor hall as I proceeded (well I turned this to a 5 hour game), then I had a scale of how this game was.
To finish, I believe that this hype has started from a review from gamespot that lacks rationality, and spotlights the politic views from the reviewer and the necessity "she" has to stand ground on this business.… Expand
Dec 22, 2013Story is not that bad and the (only) voice is good, but it's hard to even consider this as a "game". You do nothing else apart from picking up letters and books, and hear what happened. No puzzles, an empty house full of useless stuff that you can pick up for no reason. That's it. It lasts 1,5-2 hours max, so no-one should pay it more than $2-3.
The only reason this game is getting awarded is because of the "politically correct" theme of the story (that I won't spoil, but will be clear pretty soon), so the entire game it's just a slimy operation to gain easy consensus, thing proven by the fact that developers themselves tend to delete any thread on the Steam forum and ban users that dares to move even the slightiest complaint about their perfect game and don't treat it like a GOTY.… Expand
May 5, 2014After all the rave reviews praising the story, voice acting, etc, I was hoping for something special. Gone Home turned out to be a big disappointment. I'm a big supporter of the LGBT community, and I'm glad someone tried to make a story that incorporates that, but this game feels like it was hastily written to placate Anita Sarkeesian so she'll shut up for a few minutes.
I was hoping for some big mystery--a story that keeps you guessing what happened to your younger sister, with a big reveal at the end--but the story lacks any real depth. I figured out how the story was going to end about 10 minutes in: nothing more than the melodramatic actions of an angsty teenage girl. The quasi-creepy atmosphere was meant to instill a sense of unease and mystery (old creaky house, flickering lights, a nice thunderstorm outside), but with such a predictable story it was just silly. The ancillary family members are given almost no development and are completely irrelevant to the story, making the game horribly one-dimensional. They might as well have handed you Samantha's diary and told you to read it.
I gave the game points for a little 90's nostalgia and a few tracks from some riot-grrrl indie bands. Other than that the game is just a 90-minute Lifetime movie.… Expand
Jul 7, 2014This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. -TL;DR- Spoiler Free
It is barely a game, and there are better stories out there more worthy of your time and money.
It is about two hours long.
-TL;DR- Spoiler Free
-Objective- Spoiler Free
In Gone Home you come home from a journey to Europe to find your family home empty. You then wander around the house picking up things trying to find those that trigger auditory journal entries from your younger sister or give clues to where other entry triggering items may be. There are also subplots about your mother and father which do not have auditory journal entries. After one to two (realtime) hours of searching the house you discover why your family is not present, the screen fades to black, music plays, and credits roll.
-Objective- Spoiler Free
The stories told in Gone Home are generic. They may seem unique to people who only play video games, but such stories have been told before, with superior presentation, and superior depth in other artistic mediums. The main story is focused on the player character's younger sister. PC's younger sister has a hard time making friends and gets in trouble with authority figures because of teenage angst. It is then revealed that the younger sister is a homosexual, and the rest of the story is about her romantic involvement with another teenage girl. PC's parents deny their daughter's homosexuality and ground her for a month and disallow her girlfriend being alone with her with closed doors afterwards. Naturally the younger sister dislikes this because she is unable to see her girlfriend for a month and afterwards they would not be able to have sex. Then younger sister and her girlfriend will have to break up because of reasons, but then because of feelings they decide to stay together and drive away together, which is why neither of them are at home.
The dad is a struggling author.
The mom works in the forest.
They have relationship problems and head to a couples retreat, which is why neither of them are home.
Little sister's former male friend took his SNES back after finding out she is a lesbian, leaving PC with no games at all in the house. Thanks a lot, you jerk.
-Subjective- Spoilers… Expand
Dec 11, 2013I can appreciate why the story of this game resonates with some people. Not just LBGT it's a story that can resonate with most any teenager.
That said, the game is terrible. The story is delivered almost exclusively through audio diaries and a couple souvenirs that reinforce what the diary entries were about. There is no game here. It's a static environment that the player navigates, poking around for diary entries. There are no puzzles. There are no enemies to defeat. No skill challenges. No choices to be made. It barely qualifies as an interactive fiction, since most entries into that genre involve the player in the story with dialog choices or action decisions.
It won game of the year based entirely on the social content it took on. That's laudable, but not worthy of a best game award.
Oh, and it's very short.… Expand
Dec 19, 2013I am so glad that I did not pay $20 for this game or I would have been pissed. If this was a $3 ios app, then Id think it is worth buying, otherwise save your money. The game starts off with a lot of potential and I was getting really into it. After a (short) while though that excitement wore off and I was waiting for something to actually happen in the game. Well right when I thought something was going to happen, the game ends! This is a super super short game. Set your expectations very low otherwise you will be disappointed.… Expand
Dec 19, 2013The only thing this game is actually selling is the story, and it is a highly predictable one. How could this be "the greatest video game love story"? Just because it has the homosexuality with a bit 90s nostalgia theme? Really? Maybe the story IS THAT GOOD and I simply couldn't understand, but the rest parts of the game is basically non-existent. There is minor exploration content, misleading atmosphere that doesn't fit the story properly and that's pretty much it. The voice acting is not bad, other than that, I can't see what makes the game great.
How this game was able to beat BF4, Papers please, The Stanley Parable in VGX is a true mystery for me.… Expand
Jul 11, 2014Gone Home is a game that attempts to be art, and in its endeavours forgets to be a game. Its interactivity is limited to moving around and looking at objects, making it nothing more than a walking simulator. In fact, Gone Home cannot be considered a video game in many respects. As a game, it is definitely not worth playing. Gone Home serves as proof that video games should not try to be art.