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5.3

Mixed or average reviews- based on 1477 Ratings

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  1. Sep 1, 2013
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I think Gone Home is a fantastic game. First, the atmosphere, even with nothing actually in the house to jump out at me, I had moments where I nearly jumped out of my seat, because I thought I heard something. Despite the house being empty of any living(or dead) beings, the atmosphere of the home alone was enough to be unsettling, while at the same time familiar, with all the bits and pieces of 90's paraphernalia scattered about the house. The story was one I found to be heartwarming, and at times sad. I'll admit there were moments when I cried during a few parts, and was absolutely terrified when I got to the entry that said "I'll be waiting in the attic." Expand
  2. Sep 7, 2013
    6
    Don't buy into the hype, but don't fall for the extreme negativism either. I bought this game as a result of the reviews. To me it doesn't earn a 10 or anything above a 6.
    The amount of game play to complete does not, IMO, warrant a $19.99 price tag. Unlike other users, I had no issues with glitches or the functionality of the game.
    The storyline was engaging enough to keep me playing
    (which is saying something), but the end was sadly predictable. I found myself waiting for something startling to happen, but it didn't. Frankly, short was good considering I was tired of following the predictable plot line.
    The ability to interact with objects was unnecessarily overdone. There were far too many empty drawers to open, tissue boxes and 3-ring binders to pick up- all with no relevance to the game. And no, I don't care about the nutritional information on the cans of cola strewn about the mansion.
    Props to the devs for the retro theme. I had particular fun with the 3D print in Sam's room as a throwback to the '90s.
    I would like to have seen the parents' individual storylines fleshed out much more.
    Overall, I'm giving it a 6, because I feel that this genre of game has massive potential (think Zork from the '80s), but it is also extremely difficult to do well. It is easier to captivate with big baddies and shiny loot than to engage the player with simple environments and story driven plots. Gone Home had me engaged from the beginning to end, but ultimately I may not have had the patience for it to go on much longer as it is written. For the price, I am looking for better.
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  3. Apr 6, 2014
    0
    This "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
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  4. Sep 15, 2013
    10
    This isn't a game. This isn't a movie. This is an experience. Taking the role of Kaitlyn Greenbriar you arrive at your home in April of 1995 after a whole year in Europe. During that past year many things have happened which may change all character's lives forever. You must read notes and listen to dialog as you attempt to piece together one of the most realistic and most heartwarming stories of our generation. The notes are beautifully written. The voice acting is top notch. The environment around you greatly reflects on the story revolving around it. Although the textures could have been worked on a bit more, there is no arguing that the game's style looks exactly how it would have during the year in 1995 and there are no reasons why the textures take away from the experience as a whole. This world is highly interactive which adds to the overall immersion, even if the interactions are just opening doors and panels or turning off lights, all of these interactions really add to the beautiful story telling that this game has. As the story grew deeper you found yourself really beginning to grow attachments for these characters and you want to know more about their very interesting lives. Although the game does come short to about 2 hours of total playtime during a first playthrough, there are still so many things around the house that you may have missed that you may want to go back and play it again. For a price of $20 this is without a doubt a game that is worth playing. Expand
  5. Sep 16, 2013
    4
    It'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
  6. Sep 22, 2013
    10
    If you are looking for a game purely based on gameplay, this is not the game for you. That doesn't stop this game from being amazing. This game is more of an interactive story than a game, but whatever the hell it is, it is brilliant. The focus of the game is to explore the house you've come home to, and find out why no one is home, which is a lot more interesting then it seems. This game tugs at your emotional chords like no other I have ever played, and by the end of it, you will not know whether to cry or just sit there with heart warmth. The downside to this game is it's replay value is nil, as by the end of it you know the story. That being said, on your first playthrough, explore EVERYTHING, and find as many of the bonus information as you can. I hope you enjoy the game, but just be aware that if you're not invested in story, it may not be the thing for you. Expand
  7. Oct 4, 2013
    10
    I found this game to very moving and loved aspect of the narrative. My only complaint is that I wished it was longer. I would love to see more from this developer.
  8. Nov 6, 2013
    3
    Originally 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
  9. Oct 22, 2013
    1
    1-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.
  10. Oct 22, 2013
    2
    Really 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
  11. Oct 23, 2013
    9
    I enjoyed the game from the first second, it really sucked me in and I played from beginning to end in one evening because I simply couldn't stop. I wouldn't call the game and adventure but I also can't think of another genre (without inventing one) that describes it better. This game isn't for you if you want to solve riddles or if you don't like to read because there are no riddles and there is a lot to read. (If you don't read the letters, notes, etc. that you'll find in the house, than you leave the game no choice than to be disappointing and boring for you.)

    You are "playing" a story that unfolds as you go and that's it... a story. For me the game lives from it's atmosphere and is ONLY driven by the players curiosity to find out what's going on. Are the parents murdered or simply gone shopping? Is your little sister kidnapped or at a friend's house? If you are not curious about what happened because you simply don't care... stop playing, this game is not for you then.

    Till the end of the game I didn't knew what the conclusion might be but when it finally came it left me very unsatisfied. I turned off the computer, went to bed and thought: "This is the end? Really?" For me it sucked... well, at first. Thinking about it I have to say... I was stupid. Because what I expected would probably have happened in every other game. The ending of the game just fits and it's good it ended the way it did.
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  12. Oct 23, 2013
    10
    One of the best experiences I've had from a game. When they say there is no fighting or puzzle solving they mean it and, in my opinion, adding any of that to this game would have ruined everything. Without distractions I was able to completely immerse myself in this game, feeling what the character may have felt at that moment. I was emotionally invested. This game is about story and immersion, period. If you are into those things check it out. Expand
  13. Feb 14, 2014
    10
    "What is so great about it? Why'd you give it a 10, AVODESKORM."

    Believe me, I wasn't approaching this with an open mind. With websites such as Destructoid praising this game. I wasn't impressed with all the good words people had to say about it. Hell even on a article previewing the game I commented that this game looks like absolute crap, if what I'm doing is just looking around at
    least give me graphics that impress the hell out of me.

    How different do I feel now! This is a great-ass game, and I stand by it as one of the greatest games to come out in recent years. Spouting expostition is one thing that many games have too much up their asses. This game is going mostly show don't tell.

    Remember when you were a child and you didn't know what was lurking around the next dark corner. I do. And this game brought back that feeling. And when all everything is lit and every door is wide open. You are no longer confused. I found myself intrigued all the way through and I think I might revisit this little adventure at a later date.

    Probably the one of the best things to come out of gaming for years. All that is out today is EARLY ACCESS TRASH and your GTA'S. So when you have your decision to spend your money on the next DLC that's coming out. Skip it and Buy Gone Home. (Your games are probably all trash compared to this game anyways.)
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  14. Nov 27, 2013
    1
    First 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.

    ***WARNING, SPOILERS***
    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.
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  15. Nov 27, 2013
    4
    Slow-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.
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  16. Nov 28, 2013
    4
    First 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
  17. Dec 26, 2013
    2
    One hour of gameplay for 20 dollars. This game is a joke, and you could save your money by simply watching a let's play on Youtube. The story is decent, but it's not worth the price.
  18. Dec 27, 2013
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Strange game. Word "game" is too enough for this. Interactive story or maybe interactive book, but not the game. Gone home has no interaction, no puzzles (except key hunting) but almost every time you're reading scraps of leters, opening drawers and turnings lights, investigating where your family is and what happend. That is the probably the most interesting thing in the game. The end came fast, all the time I expected some story twist but didnt come. Expand
  19. Dec 29, 2013
    3
    Do 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
  20. Jan 7, 2014
    3
    Joeberto's Short Review -

    If you want to watch a movie then rent a Dvd.

    Game's interaction very low.

    Duration of the entire game, 1 hour (a movie is longer).

    Graphic [mid-low].

    Don't buy it.
  21. Mar 10, 2014
    1
    Nice 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.
  22. Aug 3, 2014
    0
    Biggest act of betrayal from critics ever. Giving a game perfect score or anything close to a perfect score just because it deals with gay rights is not just deceitful, dishonest and suspect but is also perverse, not for the subject matter but for the bull#&$ pc way you've handled a professional job. I can no longer rely on professional reviews to make a judgment on if I will make a game purchase,

    Thankfully we have user reviews on Metacritic which I WILL be using to avoid "games" like this in the future as I would AIDS. Although even with that you need to make sure it's not corporate shills typing their one off review with a 9/10 attachment, or some delusional art student, who's only game consists of this, pacman and portal. . You're not fooling anyone guys.

    Great idea, horribly delivered, the dialogue wasn't even good, the best friend subplot felt disjointed to the narrative, I mean I could go on and on and on.

    The atmosphere was great if it was a horror game as the blurb would lead you to believe, but it isn't, it's just a disappointing walking simulator that does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to entice you. Thankfully the game only clocked in at an hour. First, (and hopefully last), game I will ever truly regret buying, leaving me with an awful taste, a slightly more full rubbish bin, and a lasting wish that I had some recourse for restitution i.e. a f$&**^ refund. Seriously, frak this game and all the reviewers.
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  23. May 19, 2014
    0
    This 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
  24. May 23, 2014
    0
    A little worse than Soda Drinker Pro. A little better than Baise-Moi. A lot less detailed than the girl-on-girl stuff you can find on Pornolab. All in all a revolutionary, groundbreaking experience.
  25. Jun 1, 2014
    2
    I 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
  26. Jun 28, 2014
    4
    Beautiful story and nice references, but it fails on what is the most important in games: Being fun to play. Gone Home is boring, it could have puzzles or something to make it fun, but it doesn't.
  27. Dec 28, 2013
    10
    Some games are about winning, most about killing. Ever so often one arrives that is about being a human and that is what Gone Home is at its core. I went in not knowing what to expect. I didn’t read the description; I just thought the game looked intriguing enough to give it a try. I am so very glad I did. In just over an hour I experienced the equivalent of a good book or a touching movie but in a fully interactive and nostalgic trip back to the 90's. This is a story about love, relationships and growing up. If you want an experience like no other game out there, Gone Home is worthwhile.

    A "Thank You" to the team that put this together, I appreciate what you did and look forward to your next effort. I wholeheartedly recommend this game.
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  28. Feb 13, 2014
    10
    This was amazing. It's a prime example of the evolution of games into art. It's a really simple, and personally story told through the exploration of your character's home. I loved it, glad I bought it, glad I played it.
  29. Jan 2, 2014
    10
    Although it's very short I found this game to be fun to play and very touching in the end. It's also a great reminder that a fun and rewarding game doesn't have to involve killing stuff
  30. Aug 25, 2013
    7
    At 2 hours odd there is certainly the question of whether you get your moneys worth out of this game, and I really understand the negative criticism leveled at Gone Home on this issue. For this review however I am going to put that to one side in the scoring. If you don't want to waste the price of the game on a couple of hours, don't buy it.
    Gone Home is a short story told bloody
    brilliantly. The story develops as Katie, the returning daughter/sister finds written notes around the abandoned house. This has always been a problematic device for furthering a plot line, and is used extensively on a lot of AAA games. If I wanted to read a book I wouldn't grab for my console and controller right? However in Gone Home the place and time is set by the visual surroundings:the books, video and cassette tapes found around the house along with the posters on the walls and decor evoke a wonderful sense of the '90's. Apart from the main story, there are written and visual clues to a number of other characters and side stories that draw you in and deepen the mystery.
    Where the game does fall down in my opinion, is the developers overriding wish to subvert the deserted mansion tropes that are so carefully set up. 7 outta 10 may be a little harsh, but this really left a bad taste in my mouth at games end.
    If its action, rpg,puzzle solving, strategy or platforming you want, this game is going to disappoint.
    But as far as story telling goes this is a nice example of what video gaming can do
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  31. Aug 28, 2014
    0
    Something that strips away all that we expect of video games that contain mechanics and leaves it bare with just a weak, trite, and overhyped "narrative". Here's the problem with this "game", there are actual games that present a compelling narrative FAR BETTER than this and also are fully fleshed out titles (Deus Ex: HR, rummage around Adam Jensen's apartment and you get to learn about his past). There's an entire genre of point and clicks that do it far better than this, and there are even some third person games similar to this that offer a far more compelling plot (the recent Sherlock Holmes game that allows you to play it like a third person game or switch to a point and click style).

    Get this game if it goes on sale - the critic reviews vs. the user feedback should show you how messed up the game industry is - take everything you read with a grain of salt, including my own review.
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  32. Sep 21, 2013
    10
    I cannot believe the absolute wretchedness of the Metacritic user community, dishing out these horrendous scores for such a BRILLIANT and THOUGHT-PROVOKING experience. I left this game teary-eyed, absolutely floored by its amazingly realized characters and emotional story.

    I loved the voice acting, the music, the creepy atmosphere, and the immense mystery that slowly unfolds as you
    play, all effortlessly moving at a brilliant pace. Since it's set in the 90's, I felt a great sense of nostalgia as I rummaged through items I used to play with as a child. This game made me feel something completely different from anything else I've played, something completely BETTER than all the action-packed, ultra-violent and incredibly DUMB games I've gotten so used to over the years.

    I'm not awarding this game a 10 because I want to see its miserable and downright SHAMEFUL user score go up, I'm awarding it a 10 because it is damn near perfect and deserves it. It's an experience you'll want to revisit. It raises the bar for immersion and realistic story-telling. It grabs you and doesn't let you go until you're finished, with an ending that will make satisfied tingles shoot up down your spine.

    This is the kind of game the industry so desperately needs to pay attention to, and I personally thank The Fullbright Company for taking risks and making the game they wanted to make, not trying to appease the trigger-happy ADHD CoD generation of gamers that can't stand to sit still for an entire second without blowing something's head off. This game is not for them, and I couldn't be happier about that.

    Bravo!
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  33. Jun 9, 2014
    0
    This 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.
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  34. Sep 4, 2013
    10
    Gone Home transcends gaming into pure experience. It's only a few hours long and you'll never forget it. It's really not worth worrying about whether it's a "game" or not: it's wonderful, innovative and completely enthralling. This is a quintessential example of why gaming is rapidly becoming the dominant form of entertainment. Gone Home is the highest form of interactive art. If you like stories or want to see the possibilities of gaming, I promise you will not regret the few hours it takes to play through this. Expand
  35. Nov 1, 2013
    6
    Let’s begin by confirming what others have been saying that there is no way this game is a 87. Paying $20 for a few hours of gameplay inherenently made me feel cheated. There is really no replay value.
    When you first get dropped off and realize that something is not quite right. You get the sense that you’re in for a treat and the game will be every bit as good as the critic scores
    suggest. Unfortunately, the “twist” comes somewhat early, which really kills the mystery to the game. That feeling of unknowing mystery from the beginning quickly dissipates. There are a few times where you think that the game could reintroduce a sense of mystery, but those themes lead to nothing and feel like immensely missed opportunities. Luckily, The atmosphere at has a twinge of creepiness that just goes along with being in a mansion by yourself. It never really amounts to anything. Additionally, the gameplay isn’t too varied. Pretty much all clues are in the form of scattered documents. I found it too often that pages 1, 2, 3, 4 of one document are at completely different corners of the house. It really does feel like a contrived bread crumb for you to follow. The game is a great concept that I hope will be expounded (to a much greater extent) into the future. While there are a few surprises, this game could have been so much more and it is the first feeling I got when I had completed the game. Expand
  36. May 24, 2014
    10
    This game isn't for everyone as you can tell by the polarizing 'User score distribution'; you'll either love it or hate it.

    With that being said, this is imo, what Dear Esther should have been. A story focused game that had a appropriate level of interactivity withing the world you reside in - not just walking around in a linear path.

    The story itself was sweet and enjoyable and I
    found myself internally cheering for 'Sam' often while uncovering the story.

    The only real critique I can give this game, outside of it just not being in the taste of most mainstream gamers, is the price of twenty dollars USD. However you want to look at it, that is a steep price for a game that should last you one and a half to two hours in playtime.

    With that being said, if you really like story driven games and like to break away from the norm with your gaming It may just be worth a purchase,or in my case, play a friend's copy through Steam's Family sharing.
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  37. Aug 20, 2013
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I can truly understand where the negative reviews are coming from. While I thought that the atmosphere created was haunting and incredibly detailed, I too felt a little disappointment when I saw the calendar and realized that the parents were simply out of town. The game sets itself up as a horror adventure game. Dead of night, abandoned mansion with a haunted history, in the middle of a severe thunderstorm. It's perfect!

    The story told is truly beautiful and touching, I felt connected to the characters in a way in which I thought was incredible, despite the game only being about 2-3 hours if you take it slow. It's just disappointing in ways, because I think we all wanted to find the parents murdered in the basement, or the Sam hanging in the attic. Not for any morbid reason, that is simply how the game sets itself up.

    What the game ultimately becomes is a wonderful lesson on keeping calm in a strange situation, and waiting for the truth to emerge. I still really enjoyed this game, I just am writing because I sympathize with the people that felt let down that the game's dark and creepy tone became all for nothing.
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  38. Aug 22, 2013
    7
    Great story, like most people say, but it's too short and for about three hours play time at maximum (to say nothing of the lack of replay value), it's not worth $17.95 or whatever Steam wanted for it. For $5 like Dear Esther was, then yes, this game would rate a 9 or a 10. But yes, if you like stories of empowerment and self-discovery, this game is right up there.
  39. Sep 3, 2013
    10
    This IS a game and it's fantastic. Probably the best of 2013 about as good as "The Last of Us" in completely different ways (although both use environmental storytelling). We learn so much about these characters without necessarily interacting with them directly and the way it uses subversion is masterful. Easily worth $20.
  40. Aug 21, 2013
    8
    This was a great interactive story(ies), while the $20 might have been steep for some I think it was worth it. This was a well done and effective story. Does a great job of capturing the feeling of the mid 90s and making you care about characters you never interact with. Personally I have paid a lot more for games that gave back a lot less. If you have played the Walking Dead and didn't mind the limited game-like elements you'll probably enjoy this game. Be aware that you will probably be done putting together the stories in under 2 hours.

    Also while some of the negative reviews have some legitimate criticism about the games length and limited replayability, ignore the "hurr durr I though there wus gunna be poltergeist or witches" reviews. At no point does this game ever give that impression, unless you are very young or very stupid.
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  41. Feb 7, 2014
    1
    This 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.
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  42. Aug 20, 2013
    7
    Gone Home is a fantastic story told through the medium of a video game. Be forewarned, the primary focus of Gone Home is the story. There are no real game elements other than exploration, reading, and listening as the story unfolds. If you're looking for a challenge or looking to engage your logic or reflexes, look elsewhere. Gone Home is a unique storytelling experience that really draws you in. Atmospheric sounds, great 90's references, and excellent voice-work accompany you on your journey through the house to discover why the home you've come home to is vacant. I only have one real criticism (be warned, my criticism does not reveal any plot points, but it does regard the general mood at the end of Gone Home). The story is fantastic, but I couldn't help feeling like the ending was too cathartic for all parties involved. Expand
  43. Gua
    Aug 20, 2013
    5
    I appreciate compelling story and innovation that this game has. Also I appreciate the fact that they didn't filled this game with non sense puzzles.But it's hard to ignore game downsides like the amount of text you'll need to read and a fact that this is barely a game.
  44. Aug 23, 2013
    7
    This game could have easily scored a perfect 10/10. The atmosphere is great, the sounds, graphics and overall has a spooky feeling to it. The story was nice and the voice acting was good.
    The game doesn't have much content though. It just lasted an hour for me, and I'm quite sure a speed run would only take a few minutes Like I said, the content is pretty tight. There were times I got
    startled even for the most littlest of things. And most of the stuff you find around in this game are useless and is just to kill time. But for the price, this game ain't worth it. A game that just lasts for half an hour or more, shouldn't be priced this high. I'm going with a 7/10 for Going Home. Expand
  45. Aug 23, 2013
    2
    Gone 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
  46. Aug 25, 2013
    7
    For me I thought it was Okay.
    Not great, but also not the abomination people are trying to make it out to be.
    Other than the main journal story which came across as underdeveloped, cliché, and uninspired, I actually found the house engrossing to search and read through and explore.

    I thought it was pretty atmospheric, additionally, I actually liked the supplemental material about the
    father, and mother and was more invested in the notes left behind about the father, his failing career as a writer and possible hints at a past affair with another woman.

    It's a shame the whole thing got bogged down in a side story about her sister, that may have been interesting as a side story, but not the main story.

    I also didn't see the point of setting the game in the middle of a severe storm, it didn't add tension and was a major missed opportunity for dramatic tension.

    As a game it could have worked if the house was more complex and the focus being changed in the story.

    If game developers and gamer really wish to elevate the medium to the level of art it takes a level of seriousness in the story. This has been done maybe one or two times in the history of the medium. but this is not one of those occasions. For any game like this that wishes to be taken in as an experience and wants to tell a story, these should all be viewed under a light similar to a movie. And in that regard, this was a very bad made for TV movie. It's great that devs are trying to push the medium in new directions, but these devs clearly need to take some of those creative writing classes that were being advertised to the main characters sister.

    As for gamers, and I think this is true in this case on Metacritic, really need to stop loving something just for the sake that it's doing something different. Different good, and this is true in the case of Gone Home

    Better writing would have definitely saved this game, but as it stands it's just a sub-standard video game plot trying to pass it self as some Higher Art.

    Pros:
    Good atmosphere
    Side plot very interesting
    Interesting house to play around in

    Cons:
    Simplistic Main Plot
    Lack of Complex Puzzles
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  47. Sep 6, 2013
    10
    This game scared the crap out of me, it has no reason to be afraid of it but you always doubt, there is a beautiful story to be discovered, just play it.
  48. Jun 8, 2014
    1
    I 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
  49. Dec 9, 2013
    10
    This was a game experience that was unlike anything I've ever had. It has a very human story that haunted me afterwards. I couldn't stop thinking about the game when I'd finished it. This game is a work of art.

    I recommend you read as little as possible about this game before playing it. It's very easy to read something that would spoil the experience of the game.

    After playing it,
    though, I recommend reading some of the analyses of the game that various bloggers have posted. This game has an emotional depth that's just unheard of, and it's difficult to understand the whole thing on one play-through. So, save your reading about the game until after you've played it. Expand
  50. Sep 20, 2013
    10
    I am a pretty picky person when it comes to media. If I have a favorite, its really something amazing, and this game is one of those pieces of media. The story is a great one which will make you feel something if you take your time with it and discover what the house has in store for you. The price may seem steep for a two hour game, but it is totally worth the price and I would even pay more now that I have played it. You will not die, this is not a hard to challenging game, but it is a meaningful game. And it sucks that so many do not see that games do not have to be about action and killing people, they can be stories that you can participate in. Im glad the designer is not offended by the low user scores because he knows that what he made was what he wanted, and fans have told him the impact it had on them. Expand
  51. Oct 8, 2013
    4
    I 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
  52. Oct 3, 2013
    3
    This is a wonderful story, well-told in nice, quiet moments.
    BUT IT IS NO GAME AND HAS NO THRILL AT ALL!

    Having said that, I can recommend the game for everyone who has watched "Tree of Life" and actually enjoyed it.
  53. Oct 7, 2013
    4
    While 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.
  54. May 5, 2014
    10
    The first game since "The Cat Lady" that has hit me this hard emotionally. I personally loved it and thought it was a great little story that many of us can relate to. When we were younger, more innocent, many of us have had a love that seemed eternal. This is before we realize all the responsibilities and things that change with adulthood. As such, many cases of "young love" are tried and unfortunately do not last. I spent the entire game hoping for a happy ending, that maybe for once, love can prevail above all. Expand
  55. Oct 10, 2013
    4
    I 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
  56. Oct 17, 2013
    9
    Extremely powerful game. It is a little overpriced given it's length, but I high recommend playing it. Gamers and non-gamers alike can appreciate its great story and themes.
  57. Oct 20, 2013
    9
    Every now and again, a game is released that stands out above the rest. What makes these games so special is that they each bring something new, exciting and different to the player. Gone Home is one of these games. The game itself requires little skill, It requires no fast paced trigger action nor does it involve any jumping/ducking your way through enemy territory or vast foreign lands. It is merely an exploration/story telling game set in a single (yet somewhat huge) house. I personally admit that the plot so far sounds painfully boring and unworthy of a single review. It's also worth noting that the screenshots of the game and the actual game play footage reminded me of some old, slow and overly frustrating point and click game. But this led me to question "Why would a game that looks so dull, slow and old gain so much attention and admiration", and so I played it. After a good 3.5 hours of 'Playing' the game (I use the term 'playing' lightly), I was completely fulfilled with one of the greatest stories I've ever witnessed within a game. The fact that you (Katie Greenbriar) get to unravel the story at your own pace and do it your own way is proof that a gripping, emotional and heartfelt story can be told through a video game. In a book or video however, you're told the story, and the experience is usually linear and controlled, but in Gone Home, you are part of the story, you make your own discoveries and decisions and piece them all together. It is solid proof yet again that a game does not need to exceed 10gb+ of HDD space or require the latest hardware for it to be considered worthy of today's gaming. This game proves that human emotion, empathy and a great storyline can make any game spectacular. This game is definitely not for everyone, especially the trigger hungry, button mashing and adrenaline filled individuals out there (Hence the mixed reviews). But if you admire a deep narrative, involving intensely detailed and interesting characters, enjoy exploring every nook and cranny, and can understand and empathise with a characters emotional/personal troubles and triumphs, then this game is sure to be a treasure. Please take your time with this game and be sure to soak it all in, it is a one of a kind. Expand
  58. Oct 23, 2013
    3
    This 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.
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  59. Oct 24, 2013
    10
    This is a great game. It doesn't have the feel of any game I've played since 11th Hour, though less about solving puzzles and more about exploring a family's problems and relationships.

    I beat it in about 2.5 hours, and I wouldn't say it has much replay value, but it was going for 10bux, and I felt it was a phenomenal value.
  60. Oct 24, 2013
    5
    Gone Home has an excellent story, I dare say its one of the better love stories I've ever heard but that's the only thing this game has going for it. The game is very short and offers no replay value whatsoever. The mechanics are solid but limited in that you can pick things up, read them and then put them back down and that's it. It's definitely a good game but I wish I had only spent 3 dollars on it instead of 10. Expand
  61. Oct 25, 2013
    10
    Definitely worth the time and effort the hype proved to be true and succinct; as I played Gone Home I was reminded of a familiar experience with Silent Hill Shattered Memories on the Wii, where the experience was more of a real-life sim but was nonetheless fully engaging.
    I feel wrong saying "I love this GAME" when expressing the joy brought on from this experience, because it is indeed
    more of an interactive experience. This marks one in a select few that begin a new trend in hyper-reality, gameplay narrative games. Although there is nothing to shoot, no one to buddy-up with or blow up, there are keys to collect, doors to open and switches to activate and in a sense. The joy in "playing" Gone Home is in immersing oneself into an emotional, investigative and nostalgic journey through a girl's house finding out about her family members; what they were each going through around the time your character was on holiday. In searching through the rooms, you find more letters, diary entries, and other miscellanea which implies or explicates elements of the family members' character; the trials and quandaries which face(d) them.
    In the end, you are emotionally engaged in the characters and their stories, and feel inclined to take another step further to see just what more this rainy night has in store for Kaitlin.
    Gone home is a story about desires and dreams, about being true to the self and integral. It is about the past, nostalgic emotions, family ties, and above all love.
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  62. Oct 25, 2013
    10
    OK...To review a game like Gone Home is like reviewing strange modern art. Where your principles of good and bad don't really apply. More specifically your principles of "enjoyment."
    IS GONE HOME FUN? NO. Is it enjoyable? YES.
    Gone Home I finished with a friend and we both cried man tears. I was amazed that a game that was everything I hated and yet impacted me so much. It was short,
    but concentrated. It was easy, but I didn't care. It told a story we all heard. But still kept you guessing till the very end. It has no replay value, but playing it once will touch you deeper than some movies and even a few books.
    Video games were created to be just that, GAMES! However there is this debate going around about video games potential to become 'art.' And that is why there is this split between the critics and the user reviews. Critics are evaluating Gone Home as a piece of art. While, the games are trying to find the game in Gone Home, and that's the problem. Gone Home isn't a game, it is work of art.
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  63. Oct 25, 2013
    2
    This 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
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  64. Nov 4, 2013
    9
    I really liked this because it is so different from the usual shoot-em-ups which seem to be prevalent. I wonder if game-makers think there is no audience for anything else?

    The game has an absorbing storyline and the information found during the game creates characters with depth, which is also not apparent in most games.

    I took a little over five hours to complete this, taking my
    time. That does seem short for the price, which is the reason I gave it a score of 9 instead of 10. I would love to see more games like this. I'd also like more games with puzzles and mysteries to solve. Expand
  65. Dec 28, 2013
    9
    It pushes the boundaries of how stories can be told within video games and is totally immersive. Play it in the dark with headphones. You really do become the player character and become wholly emotionally invested in the stories being told within the house, both the main story and the stories you have to piece together yourself from clues around the house.
  66. Dec 26, 2013
    4
    Gone 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.
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  67. Nov 8, 2013
    9
    People seem to forget that in the ancient times of video games industry, games were just like books. They were telling a story and delivering something emotional to the players. Gone Home is a beautiful example of a video game book where the main role is the story itself and not any kind of action. If there's a question about games being art, Gone Home is a beautiful proof that even gaming industry can deliver realistic and emotional stories. This game reminds me the old times when I was playing to see and live through characters' story. Expand
  68. Nov 9, 2013
    2
    Gone 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.
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  69. Dec 30, 2013
    5
    The gameplay consists of nothing more than picking up and reading items while a narrative tells a story a trite, clichéd story that's ending leaves the player flat with the all too familiar, "That's it?" reaction. It's worth a once-through if you get it for under $5 on a Steam sale, but nothing more. The "professional" critics are doing gamers a disservice on this one with their 9s and 10s and GOTY recommendations. Expand
  70. JRC
    Mar 2, 2014
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Oh splendid, I pay 20 dollars to play an one hour gameplay time, with the easiest puzzles ever and with a terrible story. Ok, it's an indie game, I give lots of support for indie developers, but really, 20 dollars. The gameplay, it's boring and have nothing out of the ordinary, it's just you all the time collecting papers that reveal the story, and worst, there is no obstacle, nothing that prevent you from achieving to the end of the game. And the ending is just stupid, you play it all just to know that your sister is a lesbian, wow. Expand
  71. Dec 1, 2013
    2
    Great 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
  72. Dec 5, 2013
    2
    This 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.
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  73. Dec 15, 2013
    10
    Gone Home is a game about careful exploration and discovery. The main character is Katie Greenbriar, who’s recently returned from a year abroad. She arrives to a new house filled with artifacts about her sister and parents who have disappeared and are not at the house. Katie’s goal is to determine where her family is and what happened in the last year.

    The narrative of the game is
    through the eyes of Katie trying to figure out what happened to her sister after reading the note on the front door from her sister. Although, despite its initial setup, Gone Home actually tells several different stories. As you search through the dark and gloomy house, you uncover details not only about Sam's situation, but also about what has been going on with Katie's parents, and the home’s previous occupants, too. You'll get insight into the state of their marriage, obstacles in their careers and their interests solely from looking around. The many artifacts in the game allow the gamer to miss or ignore some details, which draws each gamer to their own conclusions. Therefore it is important to examine and read every object you can in the house.

    The graphics of the game are ok. The house is well rendered and lit in a way for you to feel the house is eerie and creepy. Although I wish there was more details with some objects I did not find graphics to be an issue. The music in the game is fantastic. The sounds of thunder, the creaky floorboards and doors keep you on the edge of your seat. As well the cassette tapes featuring bands such as Heavens to Betsy and Bratmobile give the real sense of the game's '90s Riot Grrrl setting. Lastly, the controls are simple, and it is easy to navigate with either mouse or trackpad and keyboard. The Fullbright Company made sure that the controls do not get in the way of the game and the unfolding of the story.

    Playing Gone Home was a new experience that I really enjoyed. Gone Home felt as if I was “playing” a novel. I would recommend this game to someone who would like to try a different type of game, and who enjoys adventures and stories.
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  74. Dec 16, 2013
    9
    Gone Home is a 1st person video game created by The Fullbright Company that is based around a young woman coming home to an empty house. She has to go through the house, looking at different artifacts to solve the mystery of her missing family.
    I was impressed with how such a simple game kept me on my toes until the very end. I constantly found myself looking at irrelevant objects,
    believing it had something to do with the plot line. Being able to pick up everything possible, added a reality factor to the game, making the player feel like he/she is deciding what and what not to do. It felt like you were in the game. Yes, I know its an over used line to try and state a point, but it’s true. This game is very open. There weren’t a lot of hints so the player has to use their brains to get to the end of the game.
    What added onto the story is that it is an effortless game to play. The controls are easy, the sounds around the house are pragmatic and most of all, the graphics are good enough to examine specific artifacts. Each of these elements plays a huge role in this game. Without simple controls, players will get frustrated and demotivate themselves to play. With this day in age, everything has the best graphics and sound, so in order for Gone Home to compete with Call of Duty or The Last of Us, they had to “get to their level.” Each room is completely different and custom to specific characters. For example, the teenager’s room looks like a teenagers room.
    As the game progresses, the protagonist, Katie, begins to learn more and more about her younger sister, Sam. Through Sam’s journal entries, she is able to narrate her story. We are entered into Sam’s world through the eyes of the older sibling’s. Sam’s journal entries are what Katie follows to find out where Sam and her parents are.
    In conclusion, I would give The Fulbright Company’s Gone Home a 9 out of 10. The game was perfect in every way. It was one of the most realistic games I've ever played. The one part I disagreed about was the way it ended. I don't want to spoil it, but I felt that it could've ended with an explosion instead of a lit candle.
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  75. Dec 17, 2013
    9
    From the creators of the famous RPG game, BioShock comes Gone Home, an intriguing and suspenseful, first-person game played from the point of view of Katie Greenbriar. When Katie arrives home from Europe, she realizes that her entire family has deserted the house. As our heroine begins to search for clues about their disappearance, terrible secrets and an intricate plot line emerge to capture the player’s imagination.

    Gone Home is a unique style of game, as it is exploration based, and the player merely roams around the house finding clues, unlike most games, which involve violence and conquering levels. The subtlety of the game is also a rare quality, since the plot is not obvious at first, although the plot later shows the complexity of characters, and their history, once scrutinized. Without giving too much away, the story involves unusual and complex relationships between characters. Although the graphics are not modern, their lack of sophistication reflects the 1995 setting effectively. In fact, the game has been praised for its realistic depiction of the 1990s and, indeed, items such as tube television sets, auto stereograms, and 90s board games frame the time period convincingly.

    The realism, however, is at times bothersome because the game is too darkly lit. It is often overly time consuming for the player to wander around finding light switches, which feels like an odd use of the player’s time. Another negative aspect of this game is its length, as it only takes a few hours to complete from start to finish. Also, in terms of gameplay, the replay value is diminished since there is a static narrative, which limits the gaming experience.

    Overall, Gone Home is an enjoyable for the person who likes story-based games rather than brutality. In other words, fans of GTA and Call of Duty may not appreciate the nuanced mood and activities, where Katie collects personal notes, family secrets, and discovers underground passageways and keys to the past. Readers may enjoy this game as most of the game’s strength lies in the layered narrative structure. As mentioned above, the game length is not comparable to popular games as the cost per hour of gameplay is significantly higher, although it may provide the same satisfaction for the more thoughtful player.
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  76. Dec 22, 2013
    9
    Gone Home is an excellent game that proves that games don't need to just be about killing. The game has actual depth, emotion, and a unique narrative method. I can understand why many would be upset with this game. the game is roughly two hours long, so the full price is a bit much. Thankfully, Steam is known for its sales. It is best to wait until it is marked down. Otherwise, it is a very simple and engrossing game that I found myself completely absorbed in. Once I started it, I could not get up. I had to finish it. I had to find out what happened. I had to experience it. Many take this game as an actual game. Gone Home is more of an experience than a game. It is an experience in atmosphere, character development, and (most importantly) emotion. This is a game of patience that requires attention. If you feel that video games truly are a form of art, Gone Home should be near the top of your list. Expand
  77. Dec 23, 2013
    4
    This 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.
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  78. Dec 28, 2013
    10
    Ignore the intellectual dwarfs giving Gone Home negative reviews because their reaction time wasn't tested and Kate didn't have any skill trees. These degenerates would have the world violently masturbating to military shooters while games showing any interest in developing an emotional narrative are brushed aside and deemed unworthy of even being called a game. The price to play time ratio is quite high, but when the quality of the time in game is factored in, I would rate this near (if not at the top) of this years' games. A beautifully somber piece of art that deserves a second chance by those who wrote it off.
    The way the story is doled out through Kate's exploration of the house cannot be achieved in any other medium to the same effect, something ignored by the lobotomized swine who claim that this piece should have been a film or a short novella.
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  79. Aug 7, 2014
    0
    This game is extremely tedious, predictable and the story, being the driving point of the game, was to basic and lacked creativity as it were to realistic and did not have any interesting twists or turns. This game definitely does not deserve the awards awarded to it but does have beautiful sounds and visuals which aid to create an eerie atmosphere. The story was revealed well (doesn't mean it has a good story). So if you like games that describe boring love lives this is for you! But otherwise don't purchase this game it is a waste of your time. I gave this game a 0 as felt only really the story mattered as it was the driving point in the game, which I would rate a 0. Expand
  80. Jan 22, 2014
    5
    An OK but not great story with an OK but not great game mechanic. Those two things combine for a game that is rather bland. It gets some points for dealing with subject matter that isn't usually covered in video games but that's not enough to make it a good game.
  81. Feb 1, 2014
    5
    I finished the game in 2.5 hours and was really disappointed. The storyline kept you interested the whole time, and the 90s memorabilia lying around the house was fun, but that was about it. Other than that it was simply entering rooms, switching on lights, and listening to emotional voiceovers that walked you through a story worthy of Dawson's Creek. Really too bad because with a better story the medium would have made for a simply AWESOME game. This way: meh. Expand
  82. Feb 4, 2014
    10
    I debated about buying this game for months because of the wide disparity in reviews, which was ultimately why I ended up buying it; why was there so much disagreement I wondered? Now having spent the last few days with it I understand. You will either love it, or hate it, period.

    I loved it, in fact I was quite haunted by it and have re-visited the home dozens of times since
    finishing it (yes it is a very quick play, about 2-3 hours). Had I learned everything there was to learn about the family? Had I found every clue? Discovered every Easter egg? (No spoiler alerts here but there are a few excellent ones!) I needed to be certain and so I have returned, over and over again, to what has become so familiar to me that I have to keep reminding myself the characters don’t actually exist; yet in my mind they seem so real. I’m sure I know them, the house as familiar as the one I grew up in...

    Take a chance, if you love it the game will stay with you long after you are done playing it; if you hate it, hey it’s only twenty bucks.
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  83. Jun 23, 2014
    10
    Gone Home is a fantastic game, and it's a shame that so many Metacritic users have rated it poorly just because they can't do a 360 noscope in it. It's true, Gone Home isn't a competitive game. But, it's a beautiful game nonetheless. The sense of exploration and emotion that this game gives is astounding. 10/10 don't believe anyone who says otherwise.
  84. Mar 24, 2014
    9
    I came into Gone Home with no real expectations, i had read a few things about how its not a game and it just crap. I remembered playing through Dear Esther, another "non game" as people like to call it, and hated it. Yes it was pretty but so boring.

    Gone Home is a totally different kind of "non game", it has a great story, amazing atmosphere and tricks you into thinking its a horror
    game with the big mansion and the constant thunder. I think you have to come into Gone Home with a open mind, or else you will be disappointing. Do it a late night, headphones on with sound cranked up, in the dark and i think you will have a amazing time.

    The Fullbright Company has crafted a truly amazing game, amazingly detailed, engaging story and a setting that you want to explore even though its a normal house. The work they have put into just the items and clues are masterful. I am not going to talk any about the story because i think you should discover that on your own.

    My reason for not giving it a perfect 10 is the price is even though it is a great game in my eyes, i think the original $20 is a bit steep. Realistically you have a 70-90 min experience which is $3.5 - $4.5 pr min.
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  85. Apr 3, 2014
    2
    I 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.
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  86. Apr 27, 2014
    2
    Gone 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
  87. May 21, 2014
    1
    Basically, you walk around a big house collecting notes that tell you your sister is gay. Should be called ''Big house full of not so subtle clues that your sister is gay simulator, also, light switches''
  88. Jun 8, 2014
    9
    First of all, this game is ONLY for who wants something more than a good story. So, if you want anything else, you won't like it, but if you are the right person for this game, you'll love it. At the beginning it could be a little slow, but when you start discovering what happened, you won't leave the pc. This game is poetic and moving, but not everyone (as you can see from the user score) can understand that. I read things like "at first i was excepting a murder and jumpscares but than it was boooooring". Well, than why did you buy it? The only reason why i don't give it 10 is the price, too much for a game like this, but if you find it in sale, just buy it. Expand
  89. Jun 1, 2014
    3
    A 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.
  90. Jun 9, 2014
    1
    "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
  91. Jun 12, 2014
    9
    If you grew up and/or raised teenagers in the late 1980's to early 90's you will probably have a lot to relate to here. If you can relate to this story and it clicks, you will absolutely love it. I think this is the reason for so many low user review scores. This game will probably not meet expectations for anyone born later than 1985, as today's current generation may be unable to appreciate the glee of going back in time and reliving a very special period in recent history. In this "game" you are essentially playing through a short story. This story brings us back to 1995 and takes place in a single night at the Greenbriar family's new home. The game is more of a storytelling simulation than a proper game and will take most players approximately 2 hours to complete. In those couple of hours I laughed, I cried, I felt suspense and fear for the family, and especially the sister's, well-being. By the end of the story I genuinely cared about the Greenbriar's and their stories outcome. For me, more interactive objects, more storytelling details and slightly better graphics would have probably earned this title a 10/10. Expand
  92. Jun 21, 2014
    10
    Many people dislike this game because they say it is stupid and pointless. They don't seem to understand the actual story itself in the game. It isn't for killing or to be very scary. I love it because of the story and it's simplicity. It doesn't have to be very complicated to make sense. I would not spend the full $20 on it, so wait for a sale. And when it does go on sale, buy it.
  93. Jul 11, 2014
    0
    Gone 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.
  94. Jul 11, 2014
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Plain and simple, it's an interactive story. I'm not knockin' it for that. It's just that.....
    ....that ending was absolutely ridiculous! I cracked up so hard. To summarize, the main character's little sister has a lesbian love affair, and their Ouija board tells them to run off together, and the parents are gone looking for them. That's why you come home to an empty house, lol!
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  95. Dec 28, 2013
    6
    Gone Home falls too short in terms of length and depth. The main story is allright but far from original. The sidestories will give you a nice view on who you are and who you live with, but it's all very simplistic and without many storylayers to peel. I guess I expected more depth in this game, there could be so much more going on. Questions remain unanswered, persons remain outlined but not much filled in (especially you yourself, as Katie).
    The exploring way of finding missing pieces of information has been done well and the voice acting is great. The house is big, there's a lot to see if you can stand the unnecessary messy state it's in. I liked rummaging through all that nostalgic 80's90's accessories and listening to the appropriately cringeworthy chickrock cassettes. And the main music is very nice as well come to think of it. There are many details in terms of design and stuff to be find, even though most of it is not of much practical use.

    All the pros and cons outweighing I would not recommend this game, unless you can get it very cheap. You might get disappointed if you're expecting as much as there has been said about it.
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  96. Feb 15, 2014
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I cant believe the thoughts of the negative scores of this game. You should be all ashamed of yourself to criticizes a girl being different as a child and growing up finding herself. The game is really well made even if it was like 3 hours its the experience that got to me. Expand
  97. Sep 8, 2013
    8
    A fantastic narrative with great exploration and detail in every corner. A great indie title any exploration fan needs to play. Great graphics, atmospheric setting to the point of being unnerving exploring the house alone. Accompanied with the great voice acting make this game a winner.
  98. Dec 1, 2013
    3
    What 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?
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  99. Oct 30, 2013
    8
    Well, the negative scores seem to be inching ahead of the positive ones, so I feel like I need to support the greens and redress the balance!
    Regardless of what others may say on here, Gone Home IS a game, and a beautiful one at that. Similar criticism was leveled at Dear Esther regarding its definition as a 'game', where it was certainly more applicable, but if you define a game as
    having to perform some kind of skilled actions to gain rewards, then Gone Home is certainly a game.
    You use your skills to find the clues around the house and piece together the events leading up to your arrival, and the reward is a skillfully told story that will either bounce right off you, or break your heart, depending on who you are. You can be any age or gender to enjoy the story, but if you only play games for action or excitement, then this game is not for you.
    It beggars belief that there are people who bought this game without doing at least a little bit of research first. Do people really just buy games without reading their description? Baffling.
    Is it worth £14.99? Will I ever play it again? I'm not sure I can answer either of those questions, but I certainly didn't feel short changed, and it was an experience I'll always treasure (besides, I bought in it the Steam sale!).
    Developers who harp on about how important stories are in games should play Gone Home to experience how good stories can be told and that they don't required feature film levels of action, special effects and dialogue to achieve it. You just need talent, and that's what the Fulbright team have in spades.
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  100. Nov 6, 2013
    7
    Gone Home is an adventure game where you play as someone coming home to a new house after spending time in Europe, only to find that nobody's home to greet you. The dark house with creaky floorboards and faulty electrical wiring makes it pretty spooky, and sets a dark tone that makes you wonder: was everyone just busy that night, or is there something happening in the shadows? As you explore the house, checking out objects and reading letters, you start to catch up on what happened in the year the protagonist missed, leading up to the secret behind the empty house.

    Maybe I'm overselling it. I certainly enjoyed exploring the house and piecing together the puzzle, but this is definitely an artsy sort of game, and it's definitely not for everyone. The game is slow, and you do little besides explore and read. But, the story is itriguing and the house is pretty realistic, so if you do enjoy exploring and reading, you may really enjoy this game.

    The controls are done well. There's generally no music, though you can listen to a few casettes you find along the way. The sound is pretty creepy between the thunderstorm and the house's noises. The entire experience is really short; I finished it in 2.5 hours.

    For such a short game, I don't think I could recommned it at all for $20, but this would be a great game to pick up on a Steam sale. I enjoyed it, and fans of exploration-based games will enjoy it, but Gone Home won't be worth it to you if you are impatient or have a short attention span.
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Metascore
86

Generally favorable reviews - based on 55 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 48 out of 55
  2. Negative: 0 out of 55
  1. Jan 5, 2014
    95
    A beautiful, emotionally engaging, artfully crafted game, completely centered around exploration and telling a mature story through interaction.
  2. Dec 2, 2013
    75
    A story that will move some and alienate others.
  3. Nov 10, 2013
    80
    Gone home is a beautiful story told with talent. The total immersion and storytelling brings a sense of renewal in the world of video games. Unfortunately, lifespan is too short: 2 hours are enough to see the end.