Gone Home

So, this came out today. Has anyone else played it? I finished the game in 1.5 sittings. It is extremely short, but very interesting in a lot of unique ways.

Though, after finishing the game, I still feel like 20 bucks is a lot to ask for a 2 hour long game with no replayability.

Don’t get me wrong, this game knocks it out of the park in terms of putting you into an immersive world full of great storytelling and exploration. But it is short.

It took me a bit over two hours according to Steam. It felt longer. I kinda loved it. As much for the places it didn’t go as those it did. It’s a mystery until the end just how dark it might get. Well worth the price of admission IMHO (It was $18 on Steam).

I’d rather not say much about it now until folks have a chance to play. However I would like to gush about the nuance, attention to detail and sophisticated character development in such a quiet game. Of course, it’s a good thing for the story that the Greenbriar’s don’t have a maid come in every few weeks.

It’d never happen, but I do so wish Ken Levine would use this template for the next Bioshock.

I’m so glad an adventure game is getting so much attention and praise.

As the game was nearing it’s conclusion, my increasing dread was palpable. Even though I knew the house was safe, the atmosphere was so effective, that I still found my heart pounding as I darted into dark rooms, scraping against the walls looking for the light switch. Just great.

On my wishlist for whenever it hits ten bucks.

I saw the review over on The Verge and my interest is definitely piqued.

I enjoyed the game a lot, but it is not convincing me that game designers have really figured out how to make interesting non-violent first person games. A lot of the circumstances of the game felt very contrived. The game is saved by really smart writing and story telling, but it doesn’t strike me as a promising game design model.

I would agree a lot with this review. Though I probably would given it a higher score.

http://www.quartertothree.com/fp/2013/08/16/gone-homes-ghosts-in-the-closet-arent-the-usual-ghosts-in-closets/

Tom loved it.

I was going to slap you, but first/third person adventure games with good stories – like this game and The Walking Dead – are probably the only way I’m ever going to “really like” something in this genre. (Loving one is probably out.)

The Eurogamer score gives me pause. I’m trying not to read the reviews or watch videos. I feel like lately a lot of short-form indie games have been spoiled by previews that describe the game in too much detail. Sometimes the concept is the entire experience. That’s probably a discussion for another thread in the future when I’ve had more time to think about it. In any case, I don’t have time to play every short-form indie game. I have to come up with some way to filter out the bad/marginal ones without spoiling them.

Why would you slap me? Don’t slap me!

Yeah, if you’re in this thread and haven’t played Gone Home yet, please go play it. Don’t read my review, don’t read either of those reviews linked above*, and for Pete’s sake, don’t watch any videos. Just play the darn thing first. It’s a powerful instance of storytelling that you should approach with a blank slate. It’ll take you two hours tops and it’s the price of a movie.

 -Tom
  • both of which I really dislike for different reasons

Just finished this. It’s quite fantastic. Short, I guess, if you’re going to use time as your value metric, but in my mind it’s an amazing piece of work on multiple levels. Not sure what else to say without spoilers, except that so many elements of it are just top notch. Loved it.

When can we just list the bajillion great touches?

Homework

Such as the contrasting Sex Ed homework.

WARNING! BY PAGE TWO OF THIS THREAD YOU’LL BE SPOILED. JUST SAYING.

Wow.

So great. So goddamn great.

The music, the fanzines…goddamn. I remember being in my late 20s at this point in time, and sort of being jealous of high school kids. I remember when Liz Phair’s Exile In Guyville came out, and I lamented that I was not a 15-year-old girl, so I could somehow get it even more than I already did. I’m not saying I felt exactly that way playing Gone Home…but I had nostalgia for feeling that way, if that makes sense.

And I love the red herrings and leg-pulling this game does to adventure game players who think they’ve sussed out the story before they get there.

I can’t be the only person who noticed

I cannot be the only person who noticed while playing the lack of even a single mirror in the game. I mean sure, it’s a gameplay conceit for Myst-style adventure games…but also tell me you weren’t thinking for at least the first third of the game that it was somehow about Katie, and that she was a ghost in her own house. Which I sort of guess she was.

Oh, and from Tom’s review… (Seriously, do NOT click that spoiler tag until you’ve played the game all the way to the end. Please?)

not sure exactly what was meant by

I don’t know exactly what was meant by “Did she or did she not?” but I found the ending very unambiguous…especially when I was dreading what I might find upon opening the attic and went and read the letter on the front door again just before going up there. The excitement in Sam’s voice and the heart locket (nice callback to a random thing you find in the basement) make it pretty clear that at least in the limited universe of the story here, it’s a happy, if difficult, ending.

We should get a spoiler thread, but that line in the review was specifically in reference to Janice Greenbriar. :) And, yes, I agree that the ending isn’t ambiguous. It’s far too good an ending for simple ambiguity.

-Tom

End of game spoilers. DON’T READ UNLESS YOU FINISHED.

End of game stuff

The last portion of the game really had me dreading going up to the attic thinking Sam did something… drastic… due to lost love. What a relief to have the ending it did after the emotional ups and downs. Also, their dad is insane.

I came really close to tearing up at the end. What a beautiful game. Top-notch work, Fullbright Company. I don’t think I’ve ever played a game that poignant before (well, Grim Fandango’s ending made me cry when I was 11). Such a special experience.

Some of the comments under Danielle’s review at Polygon make me want to go something-something. I love being a guy, but I hate my gender sometimes.