By Cara Ellison on August 2nd, 2013 at 6:00 pm.
The Fullbright Company’s Gone Home is one of the most atmospheric, interesting narrative-led games I’ve ever played, and I only got to play the first hour of an IGF build earlier this year. The Riot Grrrl soundtracked-game was enough to have me begging for One More Hour, but Steve Gaynor and his team were cruel and went radio silent. Thankfully they’ve popped back up to announce that Gone Home is coming out on the 15th of August on Steam and DRM free on the Fullbright site.
I’d advise you to set aside $19.99 to purchase it on that date immediately. It’s that good. It’s all anyone will talk about for the rest of the year.
You pick up a newspaper. It says “Ex-2k Marin Staffers Form Supergroup”. “Gone Home, being developed by The Fullbright Company and formed of ex-2k Marin staff who have worked on the Bioshock franchise among other titles, and with a score by Chris Remo of Double Fine, will be released on Steam and DRM free on the 15th of August. The 90s-set Gone Home was an IGF 2013 Finalist for Excellence in Narrative, and had an Honorable Mention for Excellence in Audio and the Seamus McNally Grand Prize. Late yesterday lead designer Steve Gaynor sent an email stating, ‘since Gone Home is about exploring a house to find artifacts and clues that tell the story of the people who live there, we’re releasing four of these artifacts now, to hint at what’s to come. Gig posters, business cards, newspaper clippings and clandestine notes begin to point toward the story of a house, and the fate of the Greenbriar family.’
“With a Riot Grrrl soundtrack including Heavens To Betsy and Bratmobile, this story is about unravelling the entangled threads of a family’s lives, the struggle of growing up, of knowing who you are, and the mementos of teenage girlhood.”
You notice this newspaper has a scribble on it: it is in Jim’s handwriting. “Write this up as news,” it scrawls. “Also remember to put a ‘more’ tag in your copy or you will break the website again.”
You put the note exactly back down where you found it (it’s a very serious crime to throw things on the floor in your own house), and your eye is suddenly caught by a tape player in the next room.
You pick up a post-it note. On it is scribbled, “More of what RPS thinks of Gone Home here. Can you give back my X-Files tapes please. And switch off the lights when you leave Castle RPS at night! – Nathan”.
You head out on the long trek to the Gone Home website with $20 in your hand. It might take till the 15th to get there, but it’ll be worth it.