WHEN A GAME ISN’T A GAME
“When Steam launched its tagging mechanism so you could add tags to games, we ended up in the ‘Not a Game’ category,” says Gaynor, annoyed but also with a sense of humour about the public backlash against this breed of firstperson adventure. For as much critical and sales success as these games have enjoyed, they’ve drawn an equal amount of hate. Why all the fuss?
“It’s threatening, right?” says Gone
Home co-writer and artist Karla Zimonja. “People have spent how many decades or years learning how the normal games work and all of a sudden it’s not applicable, and ‘God! It’s [not] about winning, and it’s about women, and I hate that!’ But you know, there’s so many cool places you can put challenge in games. We chose to put it chiefly in comprehension and understanding, and that is not where a lot of games put it, so [ GoneHome is] unfamiliar, strange and threatening.”