'Tacoma' Doesn't Reach Heights of 'Gone Home,' But It's Damn Good Sci-Fi

The developers of 2013's groundbreaking adventure game have returned with a short but sweet tale, this time in space.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/xwze4z/tacoma-doesnt-reach-heights-of-gone-home-but-its-damn-good-sci-fi

In a way this what Everybody’s gone to the rapture was hoping to achieve but it lacked a smoothness and real interactivity that Tacoma is doing.

Something that just hit me. Gone Home was, in a (mildly reductive) way, a video game escape room. Sans puzzle solving and way more focus on opening drawers and looking in every nook and cranny.

When I started playing Tacoma I was struck with how similar the experience of it felt like when I did the Sleep No More interactive play in New York. Walking around, observing this scene happening in front of you, following certain characters as the others walk away and do their own thing.

I just think it’s interesting how Fullbright’s games are so far experiences that have a physical world equivalent (or inspiration?) that I can point people to when they ask “what’s it feel like to do an escape room?” or “what was Sleep No More like?”

The creators have been quoted as saying Sleep No More is an inspiration for their work. It’s from a Wired article, found here.

The quote goes:

Sleep No More, the experimental New York play that lets the audience wander through a house rifling through the scenery and choosing which scenes to watch, was an inspiration, but unlike the play, rewind means never missing anything.

What I find interesting is that both games, Gone Home and Tacoma, are these slices of the characters’ lives. And as such don’t hold to the traditional three act structure of storytelling. Rather these games are more like short stories in that we get a slice of the characters’ experience. Or in Tacoma we see vignettes and it allows our imagination to create the arc.