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Gone Home: My So Called Life + System Shock


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I don't want to say too much about this game because I feel that the less you know going into it, the better it is. The Steam store description more or less gives all you need to know:

June 7th, 1995. 1:15 AM


You arrive home after a year abroad. You expect your family to greet you, but the house is empty. Something's not right. Where is everyone? And what's happened here? Unravel the mystery for yourself in Gone Home, a story exploration game from The Fullbright Company.

Gone Home is an interactive exploration simulator. Interrogate every detail of a seemingly normal house to discover the story of the people who live there. Open any drawer and door. Pick up objects and examine them to discover clues. Uncover the events of one family's lives by investigating what they've left behind.

It's an incredibly detailed setting for an atmospheric and well-written game. I just finished it myself but I'll leave aside discussion of bits of it until others get a chance to contribute. I'll just say that I was constantly surprised by some excellent little touches and it was enthralling throughout. Also it's so fucking dark jesus where's the light switch aaaargh

This is a fantastic example of how games can do storytelling in a unique way.

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Sounds very interesting... Is it a proper 'new' game as in snazzy graphics and that? I only have my work laptop to play anything remotely taxing on these days, which is an i5 apparently but I've not tried anything too taxing on it.

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I totally found several ghosts in this game.

I guess I'll hold off on elaborating further until more people have played it but I found this a really enjoyable, compelling experience. It's definitely not without its flaws, and left me with a few frustrations, but it's incredibly heartening to experience a low-key human story being told in the the language of mainstream video games.

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Yep. When I gather up the nerve to move forward (if this was real at this point I'd just have left the house and gone to a hotel until daylight) it's excellent.

It's dripping character and atmosphere, and the entire "gameplay" (so far) is just about exploring and discovering the story at your own pace...

Considering I've seen about 6-7 audio journals and some notes, "Sam" is an excellent character. Even mum and dad have got some good development...

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Just finished this. Loved it.

I'm really loving the selection of titles appearing recently that could be classed as 'interactive experiences' rather than games, this being a great example but also Journey, Brothers, Dear Esther etc. Great story telling with no fat, just a neatly packaged slice of memorable entertainment.

And the cost never bothers me, I'd rather pay £10/£15 for something that lasts a few hours but I'll remember for a long time to come, than £30/£40 for something that lasts 80 hours plus but is reminiscent of a hundred other games.

More please.

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To the Moon is the only other "interactive story" that springs to mind though.

That'll stick with you for a long time...especially if you're prone to "getting something in your eye" ;)

Awesome, just realised I bought that in the Steam sale so will give it a crack, cheers.

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My So Called Life + System Shock

:lol: Fucking perfect summation

Played it for the last couple of hours. Its such a well told story. The parents story is so well told, without even any audio diaries. Just stuff you pick up on from the letters and notes and stuff. The whole thing is really good, like an alternative rock 90s version of dear esther. Really helps if you were a kid from that era too. So much nostalgia, all the band posters and stuff :wub:

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Quick aside - if you're playing to Steam make sure to flog the cards quick - going for 25p to 30p atm!

(Sorry for the message of money-based greed amongst what's a really emotionally captivating ga

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And done (2hours 22min according to Steam playtime).

It's pricey for it's time (but my other option tonight was going to the cinema - so about the same time for the same money!), but it was a lovely little package. I don't really want to say anything else about it because going in "fresh" is definitely the way to get most out of it.

It's certainly going to stick with you for a fair while...

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I really enjoyed that.

Couple of things I didn't get to do. Spoilered

Are the combinations for the filing cabinet and the safe in the game?

Yes

Locations;

The combination for the filing cabinet is written in big letters on one of the folders in the Library

The code for the safe is under the door from the secret room into the guest room...if you didn't open the safe you may have missed a key part of the back story...

This is a second story based spoiler in case you want to know what the above would tell you. DO NOT READ OTHERWISE

The implication is that Oscar was abusing his Nephew Terry (Sam and Katie's dad). There's strong hints in the letter in the safe, the secret room with a child's growth measured on the wall (stopping in 1963 as per the letter in the safe, and tying in with Terry's books) and the secret path from the hidden room to the guest room (i.e. where Terry would stay).

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What do you mean by second story?

I just finished it in about 2 hours.

I enjoyed it but I was expecting a big cliche shock at the end. But it just ends with reading the note to kate? and that's it? I didn't see any ghosts? Did I play this game properly? or did I miss something huge?

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Definitely not worth the £14 I spent on it - maybe £3 or £4 to pass an hour and a half it lasted but nothing more.

It's an interesting idea and the first half hour point to something more suited to something interactive but that slowly dwindles and you realise all there is is collecting a reasonably well presented story through notes and the odd incidental detail and nothing more. Most of the main story is well trodden, so much that you can guess what is going to happen from the first couple of notes that introduce it properly, mind the way it's fleshed out via the environments adds a nice extra dimension to it. Ultimately thought, If you didn't use a controller for it I personally don't think anyone would care. The secondary stories are probably of more interest as you have to put at least a tiny bit of effort into piecing them together but again it's just a case of finding the relevant text and looking at the environment a bit.

As a game it's just really not one, as an 'interactive movie' it's better than a cutscene but really doesn't deliver on the emotion and atmosphere it promises at the start so it's a bit of a let down.

The fact I was bored before it's full 99 minutes as nothing really new was being offered probably sums it up. I imagine people who are a bit better at suspending there disbelief of what they're actually doing would enjoy it more.

The Magic Eye pictures where an awesome nostalgic inclusion though :)

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What do you mean by second story?

I just finished it in about 2 hours.

I enjoyed it but I was expecting a big cliche shock at the end. But it just ends with reading the note to kate? and that's it? I didn't see any ghosts? Did I play this game properly? or did I miss something huge?

I dont think so.

I think the ghost story is a bait and switch. Its really a love story, well a teenage romance story.

Just finished it there. I really enjoyed it, its a brilliantly, brilliantly told story. Put it this way, this morning when i got up i could remember the names of every person in the game after palying it for a coupel hours last night, compared to some AAA blockbusters where the antagonist comes on screen after 10 hours playtime and im like "wait a minute, who is this guy again?" :lol:

Its quite a touching story (wouldnt go as far as some of the poor saps on Gaf who claimed to be blubbing like a baby at the end), but it really was quite a touching story. Really well acted, and brilliantly told. Again, better writing and storytelling than most big budget games. They may be derided as artsy fartsy no-games by some, but more experiences like this and Dear Esther please.

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What do you mean by second story?

I just finished it in about 2 hours.

I enjoyed it but I was expecting a big cliche shock at the end. But it just ends with reading the note to kate? and that's it? I didn't see any ghosts? Did I play this game properly? or did I miss something huge?

It's funny how this (common) complaint is the total inverse of

Terry's father's criticism of his writing.

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