(Linux/Mac/PC/PS4/PS5/Xboxes) TACOMA was the second game from GONE HOME creators Fullbright Studios. It’s worth noting that Fullbright barely exists at this time due to founder Steve Gaynor’s toxic behavior. In fact, all fifteen employees decided to quit — leaving only Gaynor — which uh, says quite a lot.
TACOMA is a narrative-forward atmospheric exploration game that takes place on an abandoned space station. It consists solely of walking around and immersing yourself in the story of just how the station fell apart. (Spoiler alert: it mostly has to do with AI.)
It’s saddening to hear of Gaynor’s behavior, especially since both TACOMA and GONE HOME are very inclusive and features complex women, but so it goes. Either way, TACOMA is a gripping ride if you have the patience for it, can willfully ignore the bad working conditions that led to the game’s creation, and especially if you have a penchant for thoughtful sci-fi narratives and striking approaches to interactive storytelling. Plus it has a very inventive rewind/fast-forward mechanic to help you scrutinize matters.
It’s also worth noting that, while I played the game without issue on my PS4, playing it on my PS5 gave me nothing but problems. It’d repeatedly lock up, would lose progress, and just in general felt pretty janky. It’s still worth the trouble and, if you’re playing on other platforms, you may not encounter the same issues, but buyer beware.
I just saw that TACOMA will be added to the PS+ Extra lineup next month, so if you have a PS4 or PS5, wait a bit and you can play it for free!