Idk if people don't like Gone Home cause it's interactive fiction. I haven't played it yet, but I recently played Stanley Parable which too is interactive story and people seemed to like that one. It offered you choices to determine the story, so it was non-linear to a degree but it ultimately is just a walking simulator. I know some people don't consider interactive stories genre like Heavy Rain a game but imo depends on your expectations of a 'game'.
Stanley Parable allows you to make frequent choices though. There is player autonomy.
In shit like Gone Home the only real choice you have is in which order you examine items. Sure, SP doesn’t have guns. Or shooting. Or other stuff like that, but it has genuine choice and consequences of that choice. You can ‘lose’ in Stanley Parable, though it is played off as simply a result of your choices in the narrative.
You don’t have choice in Stanley Parable, at all, every action you take is manipulated.
Then again the Real Person ending averts this completely, as does the Powerful ending. Both aren’t exactly good endings
You have very little ‘real’ choice in games. You’re manipulated an awful lot in video games, be it simulated corridors or forced to kill enemies. Stanley Parable offers you choice like, for example, to follow the voice’s narrative or to ignore it. Gone Home doesn’t even give you that, from what I’m told. All you do is pick up items and look at them.
It offers the illusion of choice, as the narrator, or in the Confusion ending his superiors (female narrator?) is always forcing you to take the path you “chose”
But metafuckery aside, its a lovely little dig at that ever present illusion of choice, and is done on a fantastic way
Eh, I’d just say it is more blatant about it than a lot of video games. That said, I’m not saying Stanley Parable is like a video game. If anything, it is the barest form of video game, the absolute bare necessity for me to call something ‘a game’ and not ‘interactive fiction’ and even then, SP rides that line pretty damn hard.
But ‘games’ like Depression Quest and Gone Home fall firmly on the side of ‘interactive fiction’ in my opinion.
I would argue that Stanley Parable is more of a game than a lot of others. Look at a game life Half Life 2. Now before I get flak because if it, I love Half Life 2, it’s a great game. But it’s a giant hallway. It’s a point A to Point B simulator. There are no deviating branches in HL2, there is no choice. (I mean, you have the choice to get shot and die instead of fighting the combine, but that’s non-cannon) And every time you play HL2 you’re going to get the same game, with the same story, and every time you’re going to get the same ending. Same with Portal/Portal 2. Same with just about every action game, every platformer, and almost every game that doesn’t call itself sandbox. Hell you want offenders just look at the TellTale Walking Dead games. There’s an illusion of choice, You can take Carly or Doug, but it’s not going to change the outcome. You can side with Lilly or Kenny, but it doesn’t matter. You can attempt to save Sarah, or Luke, or Larry, or any other of the numerous people, but in the end they all suffer the same plight. Because they gave you a choice, but the games all needed to end the same way. They were marked for death, and you saving them only prolonged it.
At least with Stanley Parable, you have a choice. You have several of them, and they all lead to different endings. Different outcomes for your actions. Going though the left door instead of the right one leads to a totally different story. And in the end it’s much more of a game than anything else. Now granted the paths to the endings are usually short, but there’s still a replay value to them. With games like Gone Home or Dear Ester, they’re something you experience once, then never really touch again. Like, I played through Dear Ester once, enjoyed the story, then went on to other things. But are they any less of a game? If you can call something with no choices a game (Half Life) or something with minimal, or inconsequential choices a game (Walking Dead, portal, the list goes on.) Then you really can’t call SP and anything but. Because every choice in Stanley Parable is a solid choice, and everything you do in that game leads to a different outcome.