I played through Home: A Unique Horror Adventure 4 times getting each of the endings on the PS4. I ran into no technical issues. Other versions may differ.
I bought Home: A Unique Horror Adventure on a whim, and incidentally discovered it’s greatest selling point. It’s £2. Or at least it was (I think there was a PS Plus discount in there somewhere). And for £2, it’s hard to really complain. Home: A Unique Horror Adventure (yeah I’m going to keep using the full name, more on that in a mo) is not really worth any more but it’s not worth less either. It’s nice in this day and age to be wholly satisfied with the value of a product.
Off the bat, Home: A Unique Horror Adventure sounds like it’s a misstep in justification. I wonder what this horror adventure is? Well sir, I’ll tell you. It’s goddamn Unique! I don’t exactly agree with the statement either, with countless other games fitting the aesthetic, gameplay and tone of the game. Maybe the concept is unique, but I don’t spend enough time in the bowels of Steam to know.
Home is meant to be consumed in one sitting – there is actually a message which advises it – and that’s not a big undertaking. First time through, Home will probably take you about an hour (90 minutes if you get stuck) but on subsequent playthroughs, you can get through it in about 20 minutes. It’s really on you to explore the game and discover all you want to discover. And here’s where the ‘unique’ comes in because in Home, you actually dictate what happens. Now, this is both more and less involving than you would probably imagine. Basically, the story is set until you reach the final area. And then you get to think about what has happened, and draw your own conclusions. Or rather a set number of predetermined conclusions.
Playthroughs aren’t going to be insanely different. The only real thing that changes is your text adventure wrap up at the end, and the fate of your titular ginger hero. That’s a shame, because you’d think more would change, but as an experiment, Home is a nice idea at least.
Because Home is just not very interesting in any area except conceptually. It’s a survival horror type, where puzzle solving and world revealing are the order of the day. It’s not scary – at all, and it’s not because of the art design (Lone Survivor was scary as hell, albeit with a few more pixels). It just never introduces anything scary.
Home introduces You, this red haired stallion of a man, who’s woken up far from home with no memory of how he got there. It’s up to you to piece it together as you make your way back to the house and to your girlfriend/partner. I guess I can’t really say I guessed the ending in a game where you pick your own, but screw it, I guessed the ending (the parts that were set in stone anyway). It’s just really formulaic and stereotypical. Gameplay will see you going through a set of incredibly easy puzzles that don’t really do anything but add to the running time.
‘I’m not totally sure what was meant to be accomplished with this.’
And that’s really it. Home is a neat little thing, a trinket on the shelf. But when the dust settles and I look back on my time with it, I’m not totally sure what was meant to be accomplished with this. Is this a test to see what you could do with choose-your-own-adventure in the genre? Because it might lead to something more interesting I guess. But as it is, Home is just a thing. But I only dropped £2 on it. And for that price, you might as well give it a shot.
Home: A Unique Horror Adventure gets 2/5