From the title of the game, I wasn’t exactly sure what I was getting myself into. So when I first appeared on the front stoop of my house at the start of the game, as my roommate can attest to, I got a little bit anxious. The game was set in the neighborhood “psycho house” at around midnight on a stormy day. Even though it was virtual, exploring an empty and eerie mansion in the middle of an intense thunderstorm definitely put me on edge. I would be lying if I said the sudden cracks of thunder and lightning didn’t make me jump or that I didn’t walk into each dark room expecting a ghost, murderer, zombie, or any other horrific creature to be waiting for me. Nevertheless, I made it through the game without getting hit by lightning or attacked by a monster.
After realizing the game wasn’t about trying to escape inevitable doom, I eventually realized it was about learning of my beloved sister’s journey of love. For a little over two hours, I wondered around the house my family had moved into while I was overseas, stumbling upon my sister’s clues as to where she disappeared to. Although I’m not completely sure if it was necessary, I ended up exploring each and every room in the house in great detail, not realizing that most of the details weren’t actually relevant to helping me get to the end of the game. Eventually, after somehow finding my way to the attic from clues in journal entries and notes, I found the final message from my sister stating that she had run away with her “true love” Lonnie. Why couldn’t she have just left me that note on the front door? The character development of Sam, getting to hear her voice and feelings about the events that happened rather than just simply the hints themselves, made the game more bearable, but I still find myself genuinely confused as to the point of the game.
Although the storyline itself didn’t appeal to me, the details of the game, I thought, were quite incredible. From my experience, in the few games I’ve played, the creators will typically make things that aren’t relevant to the game unaccessible; you can’t walk up to a random cup and throw it around. But in Gone Home, although it sometimes frustrated me, I could inspect just about everything in the house. It was amazing to see all of the detail that the creators put into the game. I loved being able to put a cassette into a tape player and listen to music and to sift through countless drawers full of very random things. It made the game much easier to get through.
I wouldn’t say that I hated the game Gone Home, but it wasn’t my personal favorite. I felt as though the game didn’t exactly have a point, so I constantly felt very frustrated. The graphics and details were, however, incredible. Overall, I would say the game was a very well created and beautiful pointless adventure.