Gone Home – where the F#!k is everybody?
Gone Home, is a video game like no other, it’s more of an interactive story. Let met set the mood for ya …
You are Kaitlin Greenbriar, the eldest of two. After a year in Europe – fun to mention you fly in from Amsterdam, who knows she even stayed at the Arcade Hotel -, you return home. Well, it’s your new home. One that your dad – failed writer – has inherited from his, let’s just say some what peculiar uncle.
After your long plane ride you arrive at your new Portland abode hoping to see a ‘welcome home’ banner and hugs from the parentals and kid sis Sam. Instead, what do you get?
A locked door, no key, empty house and a cryptic letter from your kid sis. Where she says: ‘yo sorry I can’t be there to see you, but don’t go looking for me and oh don’t tell anyone’. Like WTF Sam?
This all happens in 1995. A time (for you young kids), where there was no email nor cellphones. We thought that tweeting was something a bird did. Facebook? Facebook was actually a book with mugshots of you and your classmates so the teacher knew which face belongs to which name.
And that my friend, is the premiss of the critically acclaimed story exploration video game ‘Gone Home’. This game is in first person view, apart from looking around and picking up items there is not much else you can do. And that’s fine.
After you find the house key in a cupboard on the porch, you open the front door and the house looks ransacked. Seriously, what the frick happened here? Different thoughts run through my head, where they robbed? Abducted? Did my kid sis do something to my parents? Did she do something to herself? The score, along with the sound of thunder and rain, helps these thoughts form in my mind. This is not a horror game, it’s just my twisted imagination.
By exploring and examining items and features in the house (like photos, letters, ticket stubs) you will trigger audio journal entries and slowly put the together the puzzle. I don’t want to spoil the plot for you, you need to step in Kaitlin’s shoes and find out for yourself, what the hell happend before you came home.
What I can say is, how fun and relaxing it was just to walk and snoop around in your new home. Finding your dad’s dirty magazines, your mom’s letters to an old friend, your sister’s SNES cartridges and Chun Li combo cheat sheet, the collection of VHS tapes with recordings of for example ‘The Dark Crystal’ and ‘The X-files’ and finding cassette tapes from a band called ‘Heavens to Betsy’ that you can actually play on the cassette players in the video game.
It originally came out on the PC in 2013 and just this year it came out on console. I played it on the Playstation 4. If you haven’t played it yet, please do. It was made by ‘The Fulbright Company’ based in Portland, Oregon. In the past some of the team members worked on: Bioshock 2, Bioshock Infinite and XCOM. Just to give you an idea on what kind of quality you can look forward to.
Gone Home is available on PC, Mac, Linux, Playstation for and Xbox One.
For more info:gonehome.game