June 7th, 1995. 1:15 AMYou 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.
User reviews:
Recent:
Mostly Positive (226 reviews) - 72% of the 226 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Mostly Positive (13,663 reviews) - 76% of the 13,663 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Aug 15, 2013

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Reviews

“Gone Home is the greatest video game love story ever told.”
The New York Times

“I never expected to see myself — or such a strong reflection of myself and my own life — in a video game.”
10/10 – Polygon

“Epic, personal and revelatory.”
5/5 – Giant Bomb

Commentary Mode now available!

Your copy of Gone Home now includes Developer Commentary Mode! More than an hour and a half of audio commentary from the developers of the game. Find it in the Modifiers menu when starting a new game! Enjoy!!

About This Game

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.

Go Home Again.

Key Features


  • A Personal Story: created by veterans of the BioShock series and the writer behind Minerva's Den, Gone Home offers the rich, nuanced details of one family's struggles to deal with uncertainty, heartache, and change.

  • An Immersive Place: return to the 1990s by visiting a home where every detail has been carefully recreated, and the sounds of a rainstorm outside wrap you in the experience.

  • No Combat, No Puzzles: Gone Home is a nonviolent and puzzle-free experience, inviting you to play at your own pace without getting attacked, stuck, or frustrated. This house wants you to explore it.

  • Fully Interactive Investigation: discover what's happened to the Greenbriars by examining a house full of the family's personal possessions, and the notes and letters they've left behind. Use your powers of observation to piece together a story that unfolds as you explore.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • WindowsXP SP2 or higher
    • 1.80GHz Processor
    • 2GB Memory
    • Video card with 512MB of VRAM
    • (NOTE: Intel HD Graphic 4000 NOT CURRENTLY SUPPORTED on Windows 8)
    • 2GB HDD space
    Minimum:
    • OS X v10.7 Lion or higher
    • 1.80GHz Processor
    • 2GB Memory
    • Video card with 512MB of VRAM
    • 2GB HDD space
    • glibc 2.11 or newer
    • 1.80GHz Processor
    • 2GB Memory
    • Video card with 512MB of VRAM
    • 2GB HDD space
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Recent:
Mostly Positive (226 reviews)
Overall:
Mostly Positive (13,663 reviews)
Recently Posted
Greed
4.7 hrs
Posted: August 27
Gone Home is one of the most fascinating gaming experiences that I have come across. The game takes place in 1996, when a girl named Katie comes back from a yearlong trip to Europe to her family’s newly inherited mansion, only to find the house empty. Katie explores the house to find out where her family members have gone and, at the risk of giving too much away, uncovers an engaging and often gloomy story.
Gone Home has been one of the most polarizing games ever. Critics and players alike have raved about the story’s ability to invoke emotion as they slowly learn about all of the characters as they move through various rooms and examine items. However, there is a strong contingent of players who have strong feelings in opposition to the game, citing that there are “no game play mechanics besides walking around a house and digging through stuff” and that “it is remarkably short (around 2 hours)”. Some people were outraged that Gone Home would even be marketed as a game.

Gone Home’s incredible polarization of players comes down to the different expectations people have of a video game. In traditional games, the expectation tends to be that there will be a significant amount of player-computer interaction, such as in shooting games, in which you shoot at the computer-generated characters and they shoot back at you. In Gone Home, however, we find that for the most part, your interactions with the game are one sided and are very rarely reciprocated. Therefore, people who expect the traditional style of game will ultimately be disappointed. What Gone Home creates is an experience that pushes the boundaries of what we define as a game and even makes us question if it is a game at all. Thus, assessing this game by the same criteria that you would any other would do it injustice.

Whether Gone Home is a game or not, its novel technique for story telling is one that should be replicated in the future. Gone Home creates a way for storytellers to give their viewers freedom to explore the story in a unique way, according to what interests them. This means that any person consuming the story can explore certain pieces of the story in greater or lesser detail as they please. This form of story telling creates a sense of freedom and personalization to the story being told. This cannot be said about other popular means of story telling such as books, movies and plays, in which the consumer experiences exactly what the author or director wants them to experience. Steve Gaynor, the writer and designer of Gone Home compared the experience to Sleep No More, a theater experience that takes place in a building in which audience members may roam, such that a viewer of the play experience differs based on where the viewer decide to focus their attention making each experience different from everyone else’s.

All that being said, the story of Gone Home certainly isn’t perfect. A common criticism of the game is that the main story of the game involving Sam, the main character’s sister, realizing her sexuality is depicted in a very shallow manner. Steven Brummel of Plus10Damage writes, “Today, it is not easy to come out of the closet. As long as there is stigma, it never will be. But twenty years ago — in Gone Home's setting — it was much harder. Gone Home is a game set in the mid-90’s with people from 2013 trying to duplicate those feelings, and it just doesn’t succeed.”
Beyond the naïve depiction of Sam, in my playing of the game, I felt that much of the story was fairly unpredictable and often times I felt my exploration of the game was more of an obligation than a genuine hope of finding anything interesting.

Beyond the storytelling, the graphics and the mechanics contribute to the overall feeling and emotion of the game as a whole. The graphics of the game add a lot to the experience that the game creates. When compared to modern, big company games, the graphics certainly aren’t realistic however the textures create a sense of creepiness that looms throughout. The mechanics of the game, which employs a pick-up and inspect system, also adds to this experience. This system allows us to analyze in detail important items to the storyline. This allows the story to be told through these items more easily.
In conclusion, Gone Home is a new, interesting approach to games that has polarized debate in the gaming world. Though its story and gameplay isn’t perfect, the game has popularized a new way to tell stories and paves the way for future games of its kind. This bold new approach to story telling is its self worthy of praise and the overall good story on top of this is just the icing on the cake.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
ElizaJane
4.9 hrs
Posted: August 27
Eh, I had expected this game to be something sad or sketchy. It has a cool set up in the begining and you see things in the house left by your family. As you play however you find out your parents are just jerks who arent home to meet you and the game is more or less you learning about your sisters business and why she also isnt there and WONT be there..... Its okayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy, but could have been better and the overall message is okayyyyyyyyyyy, but kids stay in school. Love is good, but so is money and therefore college lol
Helpful? Yes No Funny
lizybobbomber
2.7 hrs
Posted: August 27
Great game, the story is good and funny. The voice acting is nice. Also it looks great, I would say to play this on a nice rainy day to make it even better.
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Jarn Argence
2.0 hrs
Posted: August 27
This is one of the few games I've actually finished. And in all honesty, I wasn't impressed with the story. I have my reasons, and I will not get into them because if I did, I might be breaking the rules. I will say that the graphics were pretty good. But... finding out your family pretty much has split apart for various reasons is not really that good of an ending in my opinion. To me, games should be about closure. This game left wounds horribly open.
5/10 in my personal opinion.
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anonymous
2.7 hrs
Posted: August 27
A superb piece of art. Alongside Stanley Parable, the best of the "interactive story" aka walk em up games released. The story was just original enough, and expertly told through snippets of audio and objects to explore. It won't last a long time and you may never play it again, but boy is it worth experiencing once at least.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Jis
3.3 hrs
Posted: August 27
Lay down, Try not to cry, Cry alot.
If you like emotional charachter centred game, go for it.
If you've loved "To the moon" or "Life is strange", go for it.
Don't let the creepy environement and sounds stop you, It's not an horror game, no jumpscare or anything.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Trouble
3.2 hrs
Posted: August 27
Has a lot of potential that it fails to meet. Honestly, the creepy house, the puzzles, it could have been so much more! Instead I find myself struggling to stay awake and am bored out of my mind. Glad it was only an hour or so long, because even with breaks it didn't keep my attention. I love the basic story line, but truly it misses the boat. 20 bucks is far too much for this, maybe 5.
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Twyzëas
5.0 hrs
Posted: August 27
About

The beautiful and emotional story of Gone Home works flawlessly as an exploration game. The scale, the details, the sounds—everything works prefectly in harmony. I'm speechless of the quality and thoughts put into this masterpiece. Since this game lacks almost any kind of gameplay and is mostly about exploration, it's kind of a visual novel with occasional interaction, very similar to Dear Esther. The lack of gameplay can be a dealbreaker for some.

Pros
  • One of the best stories within a game
  • A beautiful home to fully explore
  • Emotional atmosphere
  • Great voice acting
Rating

10/10 — Masterpiece
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CAINe
1.5 hrs
Posted: August 26
Short and the ending is not that good
Helpful? Yes No Funny
BrotherLewis
0.5 hrs
Posted: August 26
Not as potato compatible as you'd think
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
74 of 104 people (71%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
10.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 28
Far too short for the money

Atmostphere and graphics: very good
Story: OK (some people will really like it, some won't at all)
Length: a few hours, a little more if you want to solve everything

Call it a nice 90's-era walking simulator with a little bit of story and puzzles thrown in. Don't pay more than a few dollars for it, maybe $5 if you're really into 90's America references or you want to take a chance on a game with no pre-conceived notions.

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58 of 81 people (72%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
4.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 30
Well, I am not usually the one to write bad reviews for anything. Unless, the product or service is blantantly horrible. That being said: I bought Gone Home with the intention of feeling a story that would in the end leave me - philosophically and psychologically - fulfilled. My verdict: The game did not do much for me. The music is atomospheric and reminiscing, besides that I don't really have anything good to say about this game. In short, the game builds up to a very weak climax while attempting - and failing - to look nostalgic.
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31 of 38 people (82%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
2.7 hrs on record
Posted: July 31
This review contains no spoilers.

The tags on this should have warned you from the beginning, but just in case: this is not a game, it's another "walk around and explore everything, eventually leading to a conclusion" type of experience. Gone Home has a main story that unfolds in linear fashion as you explore the surroundings, and also a lot of background detail that tells you more about these people you never interact with. All the characters actually have quite a bit of backstory, not just the one the story focuses on, and it's easy to miss all the little hints and clues that tell you everything there is to know about this world, so it's not quite as linear as your movements.

However, that still doesn't mean it's worth $20 at full price; there's just not enough substance to justify it. At $4 on sale, you could go for it if you really like these kinds of harmless, non-twitchy explore type interactive experiences. If you're open to it, and you like thinking about fictional people and what their lives could be like, well, you might even get your money's worth. The hard decision for me is whether I recommend it, and I'll have to go with "no". It's not terrible by any means, it's a charming little slice of life experience, but it's awfully short, and the emotional and narrative payoff is really too paltry. If I'd read this as a story or watched it as a TV show, I wouldn't have walked away satisfied, and dressing it up as a game doesn't change that.
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22 of 23 people (96%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
2.5 hrs on record
Posted: August 10
Not worth 20 bucks. Finished it in less than two hours.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
13 of 14 people (93%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
3.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 11
The retro-styling to the nineties is well done in the Unity engine with decent enough voice acting. Other than that I am not impressed by this short story at all. A rather bland love story packaged in an extremely short game. Don't waste your 20 local credits is my advice.
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16 of 21 people (76%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: July 31
I am decently surprised that I took 1.9 hours to finish this game. I'm not known for my speed, so the average player should be able to finish this game faster.

Now, some might say that the game's experience and gameplay requires bite-sized length, fine. But quality-wise? Let's just face it, the gameplay is simple, the environment is a house (well-built, I'll give them that), and the story... Well...

It's a love story with a happy ending that will never work, considering that the real-life consequence of it would destroy it. That said, the plot is predictable, a writer from centuries or millennia ago has more to offer than this. Slapping the LGBTQ cause on the front cover doesn't make it better, just exploitative of the genre and social cause.

That said, the story (backstory, to be precise) is well-crafted. I like the nuggets of details here and there, but it's about as fleeting as the game, what can I say?

What is worse is that there is little hope for improvement, as this game isn't exactly built for expansions and sequels, and I've seen reports of the developers censoring players for voicing out their disatisfaction with this game. Some reviewers decided to fall for the LGBTQ trap and gave it top-class ratings. Nope, this developer is likely going to keep doing what they're doing, and want to look like martyrs for the cause.
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10 of 11 people (91%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 8
This game is getting a lot of hate nowadays. Like other reviewers said, its not for everyone, but it was for me. Playing this game is like solving a mystery that at first is very external, and then becomes more of an internal journey of coming of age. Sweet, touching, beautiful in its details, and even dark in several ways that are easily skipped over. Its really nice to play a game that wasn't pandering soley to the demographic of straight male. For someone not in that category it was relatable, affirming, and a breath of fresh air.

It's short (def get it on sale <$10), and "not perfect" in the sense that it isnt a "game" in that it doesnt have gameplay. But it is truly an innovative storytelling mechanic, seeing the human story through objects left behind. Its like 90's archaeology. Walking through my house after I finished it felt like I was seeing everything with new eyes.

If you like puzzles or explosions or chase scenes in your games then this isnt for you so there is no point to buy it and then whine about how bad it is just because it doesnt resound with you.
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13 of 19 people (68%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 30
That was one of the most anticlamactic games I've ever played.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 6
Interesting concept, but far too short and the story was really not that interesting. £15 for a 40 minute game with zero replayability is way too expensive, I would expect £4 or so, tops. All the rave reviews from all the mainstream publications and sites is incredibly suspicious.

3 hours "played" is due to trading cards, not actual playtime.
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21 of 36 people (58%) found this review helpful
9 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
1.3 hrs on record
Posted: July 31
Even Twilight has a better love story
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