Gone home, a wondrous trip to the 90’s

As my previous post indicated, I am ready once again to join the written review world.

You might have noticed that I missed my own deadline of reappearance with a week. My dears, it is flu season in Sweden and unfortunately for me, I was one of its victims.

But as promised, let me tell you about this very interesting, short, but well executed non the less, game called Gone Home.

June 7, 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?

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.

Are you a bit fan of interior design? This game will take you back to the early 90’s, when Fresh Prince was roaming the airways and we’ve just left the best decade in pop music, the 80’s. I kid you not when I write that I had several awkward deja vu whilst playing.

You are a young whippersnapper in your early 20’s called Kaitlin Greenbriar. You have been out gallivanting around Europe while your parents are at home worried sick. Children are ever so selfish.

You make your way home after a year only to discover that no one is there to greet you. Like a little kitten that no one wants because it “accidentally” decapitated the precious family goldfish. The feeling of utter neglect. It is a stormy night and the electricity flickers. The TV shows static while the wind whistles outside, causing the branches to occasionally brush against the windows. The only sign of any life is a message on ye olde answering machine from your distressed baby sister. The voice is obviously upset as it tries to explain absolutely nothing. So now you are in your parents “new house” that they have inherited from your uncle with a question “Where is everyone?”.

The ambiance tells you to be fearful and on alert as you make my way through various rooms and corridors, puzzling together a very mentally alluring story. But as soon as something unexpected presents itself that should prompt a reaction of fear, you are faced with a moment of “oooh look, VHS!! I REMEMBERED THESE SHOWS!”.

You have turned into an old tourist visiting a museum of memories past.

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How can you not love a game that has this baked into its story?

You find various clues of what have occurred and why no one is there to meet you. While getting a picture painted of the most horrible events taking place you find yourself in awe of the sheer details that went into creating the atmosphere.

I cannot tell you much more about the story itself as it is very very short. I finished it within an evening and I took me time to admire the amazing voice acting performed and incredible attention to details to depict a flawless representation of a 90’s something American household. The characters are deep and engaging. If you have no plans for the evening I’d say get this game, as it is more entertaining than what ever you may find on Netflix.

Gone Home is a first-person interactive story adventure video game developed and published by Fullbright.

Set in the year 1995, the plot focuses on exploration of a mansion in Portland, Oregon, and examining common household objects within the home.-Wikipedia

The hunger

As winter continues to show its distance here in south Sweden, I have had the pleasure of picking up a long lost hobby.

Playing games and writing about them.

Yes I used to do that a while back and I used to enoy it as well.

I have decided that after a long hiatus, it is time for me to do what I love to do. Play games.

The last few months I’ve been stuck playing indie games such as The Cat Lady and Gone home. I have also been enchanted by the continuous magic of Final Fantasy; Curtain calls, the second installation of Final Fantasy Theatrhythm.

My first piece will be coming next weekend and will cover Gone home. A mystery game set in the 90’s. – You are an American youngster that ran of to jollyride around Europe. You come back home and discover that you are missing a family. You go through the relics of the 90’s to discover bits and pieces of what happens to your DNA sharing humans.

 

-Stay tuned

By anjobanjo Posted in Gaming

Review: Skulls of the Shogun

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I have to admit, I haven’t played a turn-based…no wait, let me rephrase that! I haven’t played a FUN turn-based strategy sinceWorms. You know those little guys that go cabloey? If you haven’t played Worms, I strongly suggest that you take off your belt and hit yourself repeatedly with it.

There is a specific breed that enjoys strategy games. The sort that rarely ever steps outside and is allergic to human contact. Those who create elaborate plans and direct systematical operations in the laundry room. Yes, those friends!

So what is Skulls of the Shogun then? If you haven’t guessed yet, SotS is a hilariously and brilliantly written turn-based strategy game. The design is morbidly fun in a non-Tim Burton way. More like Dexter’s Lab if they all were walking skeletons from early Japanese history. The game begins by presenting a devastating battlefield or fun genocides of war, your pick. Where you—a general of sorts—have defeated every little obstacle and are now going to rule the Japanese as Shogun! Hurray! Faith was never so kind and lady luck always has a cruel sense of humor. You are stabbed in the back by an unknown pile of jerk and left for dead.

Once you regain your consciousness you awake on a ship that sails you across the sea. Your destination? A resort for dead bunk buddies. You are now in the land of the dead. As the thought is settling in, you are approached by a guard who tells you to get in line.sotssp-18

This is where the fun starts. As “almost” Shogun, ruler of all Japan, you find yourself standing in line offensive! Especially considering that the waiting time is 512 years and counting.  I guess the general has never attended black Friday at Macy’s.

There in which comes the battle tutorial in play! So far you have only your general to teach those pesky afterlife guards that you are too important to stand in line. You’ll learn attack and positioning tips where you, with ease, destroy your opponent.

sotssp-5As the game progresses you’ll get several different players and characters on the board with the usual standard of fighters, archers, cavalry, monks, and your general of course. Reach and movement are all different depending on who you move. It’s pretty straight forward. If you are launching a cavalry, make sure to select the opposition that shivers and shutters. That way you’ll know you’ll strike a successful blow. Your primary mission is to get into the afterlife without standing in line. During the gameplay you find out some neat and unique tricks to defeat your enemy. Like knockbang, where you push the opponent off the ledge if they stand too close to it.

I took a short break and found my husband playing the game. If something XBL arcade pulled him away from his PC, that’s a good sign.

The Good

  • Great design
  • Capturing story that is entertaining and fun
  • Creative sound clips and music
  • A good increase in difficulty
  • Charming characters

The bad

  • Controls – I do not believe in double confirmation of an action
  • Longevity issue, I don’t think I’ll play it more times then I already did
  • Demon powers vanish after a stage has been completed
  • Tells you too much of what to do

The final word

I am in no means a strategy player. I’ve always found them boring and repetitive. This one captures my attention and is actually in all sense “fun”. I think it has a genius design and a fantastic written story. I think it can certainly be worth your time, even if it’s for the story alone. I also do think that it can be a big hit when it comes to VS online play. I rarely ever play online so to me a game needs to be able to stand on it’s own without the possibility of multi-player. In my opinion, it did. Skull of the Shogun provides entertainment and some brain gymnastics that we sorely need, because our youth is getting dumber while I am getting older. I am afraid of the future!

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Content originally posted on gamertagradio.com