The layered, AR-embodied story of Tacoma

Gone Home, our favorite game of 2013, was a quiet marvel. Often slapped with the label of “walking simulator,” Gone Home was a revelatory shift in videogame storytelling in its non-standard exploration of a family via a house’s inanimate objects. Gone Home told a heartfelt coming-of-age tale about family and teenage sexuality during a time where such stories were rare in videogames. In Gone Home’s highly anticipated follow-up, Tacoma, The Fullbright Company have shifted their focus to a new venture beyond Earth itself: space. In the newest trailer and gameplay footage for Tacoma, revealed yesterday during YouTube’s Live at E3…


Gone Home gets the retail release treatment, now comes in an old-school SNES box

Our favorite game of last year has unexpectedly gotten a physical release on DVD, which is perfect because one day many years from now your kid can find it on your shelf, boot it up, and have a very strange and metaphysical experience. “Gone Home is a story about a high schooler in the ’90s, and is in part about nostalgia for that era,” creative lead Steve Gaynor tells me. So it’s only natural that the disc is packaged in a rad, old-school, faux Super Nintendo box. For someone like me who grew peach-fuzz while playing 16-bit consoles, that is…


Gone Home’s Steve Gaynor: "Being a gamer has a stigma to it."

This is something we’ve known forever, but the creator of Gone Home drove the point home and perhaps put the nail in the coffin. Talking today about narrative design, Gaynor made a subtle, but piercing call.  In particular he was lamenting the fact that people who don’t play games but wanted to play his because of the more thoughtful subject matter were greeted with images of dudes with guns when they went to buy it on Steam.  “Downloading something on Steam is intimidating. Being a gamer has a stigma to it,” he said, pulling up a slide of the popular digital distribution platform’s…


Gone Home creator talks reading in videogames and the danger of lore

There have been many-an-editorial about whether games should have narratives at all, and, if so, how they should go about telling them. Gone Home’s beautiful answer was to wed stories to objects and environments, instead of, say, through non-interactive voiceovers and cutscenes. But it wasn’t perfect, as there was a lot of writing on the screen.  Talking to RPS, Steve Gaynor, the designer of Gone Home, said that he isn’t married to the idea of reading in games, and that there is a fine line between a page of prose and lore-porn: I’m as susceptible as anyone to very low…