As a huge fan of the general horror genre, especially the creepy video games, I was more than excited to play “Home.” Home is billed as “a unique horror adventure set in the beautifully-realized pixel world.” On this claim, the game did deliver. If only it was able to deliver what I was hoping for, scares, eerie atmosphere, in-depth storytelling, or, you know, anything a horror game should be.
After reading the great reviews and “I don’t want to spoil the surprise” comments, I was pumped to dig in, but quickly found I had been misled. The game centers around you, a man who has awoken alone in a bed that is not his own, located in a large house which you do not recognize. After moving steadily through what seems to be a torture chamber, a sewage plant, the forest, and several other locations you realize that you are alone and all other people are dead. All dialog is presented as an internal monologue, but one which uses all past-tense verbs. As our “hero” works his way through all the hair raising the twists and turns that only 2-D visuals can provide, we discover that we may not be who we once thought.
Lets get right to it, the story was flat and predictable, but for one main reason, THERE IS NO PREDETERMINED STORY! How is this possible you ask? Well, throughout the lengthy walks and seemingly pointless searches you find several items that loosely relate to your character, the items are stored away and not seen/used/discussed again until the very end of the game. And, oh, the end of the game…it becomes whatever you want it to be. Literally you see every item you collected and are asked a yes/no question about each one, based on your answers you are told a short story which kinda-sorta links all the people and places together. No joke, you actually get to choose at the end of the game which parts of the game happened or didn’t happen. WTF?
Home was a unique experience, I’ll give it that, but the game seemed to lack substance. There was no true plot, no cause/effect of the actual gameplay, and no reason to replay the game once finished. Our run took under 2 hours, and that included messing around and talking back and forth with the live chat. If you can score the game for free it might be worth your time, but I wouldn’t recommend Home to anyone looking for horror.
Final Rating: 2/10