Thoughts on Gone Home

Gone Home won numerous Game of the Year awards, and I finally put in the couple hours to play through it myself.

The critic score on Metacritic is an 86, but the user score is a 54. I think the disparity stems from the game being more of an interactive movie than a game, and it's a niche movie at that. It's like movie critics attended Sundance and loved this thing, so much so that a lot of people have joined in the experience who otherwise wouldn't have heard of it. Like any niche movie (or game), you are going to draw out a strong opinion in either direction.

Personally I thought the story had good pacing and it maintained my interest throughout. But the stupidest frustration impeded my experience: the controls. Seriously, this is a game that doesn't rely on jumping, shooting, or even running, so what little controls you offer need to be perfect. I tried both a mouse / keyboard and a 360 controller, but both had sloppy precision and I had to really focus on getting my reticle to stay on top of an object to interact with it.

I'm glad to see the games industry is exploring new experiences and for that I think Gone Home deserves praise. It's just disappointing to see games like The Last of Us being passed up for Game of the Year when it did so much more to enhance the medium of games.