I just finished Gone Home and it's potentially the absolute worst ending I've ever seen in a video game.
So. "It was a dark and stormy night" and you arrive at a creepy mansion with no one at home and the lights turned off. Strewn throughout the house are references to the occult, ghosts, and an old man going mad. You arrive at the attic to find the source of the mysterious note hastily scrawled out on the front door asking you to please not search for what has happened to "sam", only to find that... she ran away a couple of hours ago and is probably fine.
Like, seriously, WHAT?
I can't believe Patrick gave this game 5 stars. I mean, I LIKE what they were trying to do. I LIKE the interface, and the graphics, and the house and everything. But when you bank your whole game on the story, the story has to be good, and this story is absolutely terrible. It shows absolutely no understanding of the concept of "tone". You don't write a ghost story and then end it with "then they found out there's no such thing as ghosts and everyone lived happily ever after." It's an absolute red herring, and I'm still baffled as to WHY they put in a huge red herring. I mean, literally, the WHOLE GAME is a red herring. That's, like, the definition of a poorly constructed story. At the end of a good mystery, the audience says "HOW could I have not figured it out! Way to go story!" because the clues were always there, they were just so cleverly hidden that you miss it. In a badly constructed mystery, like 'Gone Home", all the clues point to one outcome, and then the author, at the last moment, substitutes a random deus ex machina to change the ending. You didn't see it coming, because it is completely unsubstantiated by the story.
I can't help but feel like Patrick gave this game 5 stars purely because he is in love with the concept of what they are trying to do instead of rating the actual game.