Game: Heart of the House
Platform: PC, iOS, Android
Genre: interactive fiction
Style: heavy Lovecraftian influences
Verdict: Recommended
Buy: Choice of Games | Steam | App Store | Google Play | Amazon
Lovecraft Video Games received a review copy of Heart of the House through the Steam Curator Program.

Heart of the House could be described as a choice-driven game, but if you’re familiar with past works published by Choice of Games, you’ll know it would be much more accurate to call this piece of interactive fiction a choice-driven novel.

It is entirely text and boasts a hefty word count, and you’ll primarily read through each chapter while making choices that lead to alternate scenes and branching paths. This adds a fair bit of replay value, as while I ended my first playthrough feeling as though I’d seen the full story, there was still a large amount of content I hadn’t seen.

Your character is pretty much a blank slate shaped by your choices, aside from your connection to the spirit world. When your uncle goes missing, you trace him to the mysterious Darnecroy Manor and begin trying to unravel its secrets.

At first, Heart of the House feels much more like Gothic horror than Lovecraftian horror, and it’s even described as a Gothic novel. You’ll encounter restless spirits, ghosts, and all sorts of creepy incidents fitting for a haunted manor. However, as you delve deeper into the darkness of the House, a definite Lovecraftian theme begins to surface and actually becomes a critical aspect of the story.

While you’re deciding how to deal with spirits and which of the House’s inhabitants, you also have opportunities to become romantically involved with other characters. There’s a range of romance options, but if you don’t like any of them (or think it feels out of place), you can ignore the romantic options entirely.

The overall story is pretty interesting, and it kept me guessing who could be trusted and which choices I should make. If you enjoy interactive novels, Heart of the House is worth looking into.

Buy: Choice of Games | Steam | App Store | Google Play | Amazon