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Mixed or average reviews - based on 24 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 24
  2. Negative: 2 out of 24
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  1. Sep 11, 2021
    90
    It teaches us that just because we aren’t saving the world from invasion or conquering some magical kingdom, our choices, no matter how trivial or mundane we think they may be in the moment, are actually quite powerful as they can truly shape the life we are given.
  2. Jul 12, 2021
    90
    Where the Heart Leads is almost impossible to put down thanks to its strong characters, deep story and attention to detail. The game is brought down only by its minor inconveniences such as bugs and typos that detract only a little from the main experience. For fans of narrative games, this is a must-play, but even those who do not consider themselves fans of the genre might find something they relate to in this game.
  3. Jul 12, 2021
    90
    Where The Heart Leads is a one-of-a-kind experience that will stick with me for a very long time. It’s not often that a game can reach beyond the screen and get me to look around and think about my place in the world and what I could do to be a better man in it.
  4. Jul 12, 2021
    88
    Where the Heart Leads falls into a short, unique list of titles that lead you to ponder things long after the credits roll. The narrative holds a mirror to the player, cornering them against realistic in-game situations and forces them to investigate their values. It’s not preachy, by any means, but it uses realism in a way that made me want to get my own life in order. If such was the goal, Armature Games has succeeded through and through.
  5. 85
    Where The Heart Leads is a fascinating and enthralling look at life and the full timeline of it and just how every moment shapes us as humans. Marrying gameplay and narrative wonderfully, Armature has created one of the best narrative-adventures ever. Overall, it is a little long and the opening doesn’t grab like the end does, but even still, Where The Heart Leads is a journey like no other. It is an experience that I will carry with me as I progress through life.
  6. PLAY
    Jul 28, 2021
    80
    With reams of text and choices, and lovely environments, this is a narrative slice-of-life that lingers in the mind, and gives some pause for thought. [Issue#4, p.89]
  7. Jul 15, 2021
    80
    Where The Heart Leads is a terrific narrative game that has you make hard, fascinating life choices on behalf of its characters to create a story that feels your own. It utilises its surreal elements sparingly, instead opting to focus on the realistic personal lives of its many richly nuanced characters. Despite some slight issues with dialogue, menus, and the camera, Where The Heart Leads is a great experience, and a fascinating exploration of issues rarely covered in games.
  8. Jul 14, 2021
    80
    Where the Heart Leads is a comfortable game about choices, family, and appreciating what you have. "Comfortable" is really the best word for it. You can pop it on and relax for an hour or two as you guide Whit through the strange landscape that is his life. I don't think it's going to change anyone's mind if they're not fond of narrative-driven titles, but it's a good example of the genre. If you're looking for the game that's the equivalent of sitting down with a cozy book, then that is exactly what this is. Often heartwarming, sometimes depressing, and frequently thought-provoking, Where the Heart Leads is worth a playthrough if you enjoy these sorts of titles.
  9. Jul 13, 2021
    80
    Available for € 24.99 exclusively on PlayStation 4, Where the Heart Leads is an independent production with a very specific focus. With a calm and thoughtful pace, he takes his own time, proposing a narrative that is never hasty or concise. As highlighted by the development team, this is not a work suitable for everyone, but for those looking for an articulated graphic adventure, able to confront choices and issues faced in a never banal way, the production Armature Studios is highly recommended.
  10. Jul 12, 2021
    80
    If you’re looking for a chill and often lackadaisical journey you'll steer in meaningful ways, Where the Heart Leads is a narrative-heavy series of roads you may be inclined to explore again and again.
  11. Jul 12, 2021
    80
    Despite not having any similarities with Armature's previous games, such as ReCore and Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate, Where the Heart Leads checks all the boxes for a great narrative-based game. Its story is deep and interesting, and players should expect an uplifting yet gut-wrenching experience.
  12. Jul 13, 2021
    75
    If you want a good narrative game that gives you great control and influence over the story and the characters, then you should definitely consider Where the Heart Leads. Because it contains so many different choices and outcomes, it's one of those games that you'll want to replay, so you can find out what may happen if you make different choices. The cast of characters are likable and intriguing, and their realistic flaws and scenarios draw you into their lives. This game will surely take you on a journey of reflection and exploration on how lives can be affected by seemingly the smallest of choices.
  13. Jul 21, 2021
    70
    Where the heart leads is a victim of its own ambition.
  14. Jul 19, 2021
    70
    Where the Heart Leads is not for everyone. If you like interactive visual novels and you enjoy dramas rooted in real life, the game will feel like a hidden gem. If you prefer gameplay over the story and you already have a bad opinion about walking simulators, there is nothing here for you. This being said, Where the Heart Leads remains a relatable experience, and going through it, you are sure to find some connections with your own life. It's that kind of game that surely triggers emotional reactions just by looking back at your life choices.
  15. Jul 14, 2021
    70
    With more attention to detail in the writing, Where the Heart Leads could have been something truly special. As it is, it’s an intriguing journey through a regular life. Some moments outstay their welcome and others could do with being refined, but on the whole, Whit’s journey is one that you’ll quickly become invested in. The decisions you make carry serious weight, and after spending a few hours with these characters, you’ll only want the best for them.
  16. Jul 14, 2021
    70
    Where The Heart Leads is an acquired taste. For those who demand action from their games, or life and death decision making in your narrative titles, this one won’t be for you. The stakes in this game are family sized, the decisions made at a workaday level and the cast almost ordinary. Even with a few niggles though, some smart writing and plenty of charm create a series of characters you can care for. It’s easy to get invested in their fate and to find the decisions directing their lives challenging to make.
  17. 70
    Where the Heart Leads isn’t going to be a game for everyone but it does a remarkable job at letting the player walk their own path through Whit’s life. Much of the story is fairly ordinary but that’s what makes it so relatable. It may even cause you to reflect on the choices you’ve made in your own life and how you may have helped or hindered those around you.
  18. Jul 29, 2021
    67
    So, really, the question is: how much — and what kind of — drama do you want in your games? If you want loud and flashy, then look elsewhere. But if it’s quiet, introspective, and intrapersonal, then Where The Heart Leads should be right up your alley.
  19. Jul 23, 2021
    65
    Where The Heart Leads is a valid narrative based video game, but it never manages to stand out.
  20. Jul 12, 2021
    60
    Where the Heart Leads offers a supremely compelling and fascinating overall narrative, one that is filled with genuinely meaningful choices – surely a rarity in video games? Unfortunately, its tall tale is also bogged down with numerous presentation issues that result in dull characterisation. Overall an uneven experience that’s both brilliant and boring – sometimes at the same time.
  21. Aug 9, 2021
    57
    Armature tries to offer something different, and even if we appreciate the studio getting out of its comfort zone, the result is definitely subpar.
  22. Aug 27, 2021
    50
    At times, Where the Heart Leads crafts an interesting narrative on the complexities of family relationships, and how the decisions one makes can have consequences. I enjoyed the plots between Whit and his immediate family members, and the possibilities his decisions can create that might benefit everyone—but much like real life, the game also reinforces the concept that you can’t please everyone, and the story plays out as such. But being inundated with other characters that I felt I had to talk to, and text that felt needlessly drawn out, evolved the dialogue-heavy game from a customised narrative into a bit of a chore. Where the Heart Leads is a game with its pros and cons, so it’s hard for me to veer my review of this game from middling.
  23. Edge Magazine
    Aug 14, 2021
    40
    Gratifying though it is to see your decisions produce such tangible results, Where The Heart Leads is consistently let down by its storytelling. [Issue#362, p.120]
  24. Jul 30, 2021
    25
    All in all, I wish I could say that playing Where the Heart Leads was fun — I was really rooting for it, and hoping it would rise to the occasion. But, regardless of how long I held out, playing this game turned out to be a pretty miserable experience, and one I would have given up about an hour in if I didn’t want to finish it for this review. This game bit off more than it could chew, it seemed, and when you try to say too many things at once, you don’t end up saying anything at all.
User Score
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No user score yet- Awaiting 3 more ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 1
  2. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Feb 22, 2022
    6
    Where The Heart Leads (WTHL) is potentially an excellent hidden gem, so obscure that I came across it by accident. Unfortunately a criticalWhere The Heart Leads (WTHL) is potentially an excellent hidden gem, so obscure that I came across it by accident. Unfortunately a critical flaw in the game design caused a score lower than I wanted to give it, but I must use my own experience since it's my review.

    The graphics of WTHL are very charming. They are not overly detailed or jaw-dropping, but they convey what the game is trying to achieve well. One key facet is that only your character is drawn and animated properly, while the rest of the cast takes on a ghostly ethereal appearance. This had me scratching my head at first but then became something I appreciated as it really places the emphasis on your character being central to the story.

    Other than that, the camera angles and lack of detail occasionally makes it tricky to traverse some areas but with the familiarity you build up this issue gets resolved quickly.

    The gameplay of WTHL makes for an interesting discussion. Some may argue there is almost no gameplay here and depending on how you define gameplay, then you could be right. Gameplay involves exploring your environment and interacting with objects and people. There's no jumping, fighting or much action other than that. The gameplay here is only there to communicate the story. What we do see is the ability to make choices ala Life is Strange. This may not be everyone's cup of tea but the story can really be compelling so I recommend it on that basis.

    The story of WTHL is the core of the game and what you will remember. I really enjoyed getting to know Whit's background and the development of him and other characters, influenced by your decisions. This is something I am careful not to spoil so it's tricky to review in a game where narrative is key. Some sections of the game did drag on a bit much, though.

    Now I talk about the specific problem I had. In one mid-section of the game I was required to take down some sculptures. I went up to said sculptures and nothing would happen - no prompt or indication, no clue from other characters and despite extensive exploration and looking online, no solution could be found. I may be missing something stupidly obvious, but the game does this a few times occasionally, leaving you adrift to figure things out. This experience may have been unique to me so I'm not going to lambast the game completely for it, but it has prevented me completing an otherwise 4/5 star game.

    Overall, WTHL is a game I'm very disappointed not to be able finish. This speaks volumes about how much I enjoyed the game, so it's an easy recommendation for those who value story above all else. My only worry is the potential bug I found may not be the only one, so I hope your experience was not ruined like mine.
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