What makes a house a home?
Have you ever left home for a long period of time, only to return years later and see everything in a completely different light? I know I have before, when I came home from college for the first time to find my room slowly being transformed into my Dad’s new home gym. Luckily, Gone Home looks to offer a much different experience about the coming and going, the ebb and flow of our home lives.
Gone Home, a new indie adventure game will tackle the intricacies of your typical family house, by allowing you to explore every nook and cranny inside the humble and welcoming walls. The game is being made by The Fullbright Company, a team of three developers who previously worked together on the Minerva’s Den DLC for Bioshock 2, so you already know that these guys have some serious experience in crafting rich and immersive game worlds.
The official game description reads as simply and elegantly as follows: “Gone Home is a story exploration video game set in 1995. Investigate the Greenbriar family’s house. Discover what’s happened to them. Go home again.” That’s some pretty intriguing stuff, right? But don’t let that scarcity fool you: there’s going to be some engrossing storytelling at play here. In fact, the game was even a 2013 finalist for the Excellence in Narrative award at the Independent Games Festival.
But the little that we do know so far about Gone Home is that the game will take place in the year 1995, in a house somewhere in the Pacific Midwest. Why 1995 you might ask? Well according to the developers, this was the last year before technology really managed to make human communication fully digital, so expect to see some landline phone calls or letter correspondences come into play at some point.
Judging from some early gameplay footage on the game’s official website, exploration will play a huge part in the total game experience, with quiet cellars and lazy porches being just a few of the many quaint locales that make up the simple yet believable house environment. There’s also a cool rainbow trapper keeper item that features a tropical penguin in a Hawaiian shirt on the cover, so there’s always that.
Gone Home is set for a release sometime in 2013, and will appear on PC, Mac and Linux platforms. But I know if there’s one thing that’s certain, it’s that after playing Gone Home I’ll probably never look at my old childhood house the same way again.