No Place Like Home

Icon - Calendar Released: 17 Mar 2022
Icon - Edited Reviewed: 22 Mar 2022
Platform: PC

No place like home

I try to support / give the benefit of the doubt to one man indie studios - but in the case of No Place Like Home it just isn't polished enough to recommend. A complete lack of any QA and testing really shows, but it could have been good maybe with another few months of development or another pair of eyes. It's a farming game, but set in a sort of WALL-E era Earth where there's piles of junk cluttering every inch of the map. The mechanics revolve around clearing the junk, watering plants & animals, then turning your produce into currency to buy upgrades. A good loop and fairly relaxing if you can see past the flaws, but there are just too many of those to bother finishing it.

Pros

  • Hoovering up rubbish is cathartic, but repetitive
  • You're equipped with a vacuum / hose - which is used to clear rubbish, attack enemies and water crops
  • Some quests clean up the landscape - actually completely change the colour scheme from dirty brown to fresh green and update all the buildings & decor. Seeing your efforts have an effect is really nice
  • The areas are beautiful
  • Fast travel system
  • Relaxing gameplay loop of clearing trash, farming crops and feeding animals
  • A decent amount of buildings
  • An upgrade system

Cons

  • On first boot, mouse sensitivity is super low and may put a lot of people off
  • The controls for hoovering, planting and collecting plants, interacting with animals are really clunky
  • The interface lacks polish. When talking to NPCs, sometimes the hover effects on the buttons for dialogue choices don't work, and the continue / interact buttons are in different places
  • There are no seasons, so ending a day and starting a new one has literally no down side and just fast forwards time
  • Lots and lots of instances / loading screens
  • No Steam achievements
  • You can only cook one of a meal at a time. This is tedious if you're trying to cook 10, or say 50 meals to get currency
  • Lots of invisible walls
  • You can't interact with anything even a tiny bit higher or lower than you. There are very few completely flat areas, which means lots of moving up and down trying to get to the right level to interact with something

Bugs

  • The biggest one here is spelling and grammar mistakes all over the place. Even in the first few dialogues I noticed: "peet food", "turn it int to", "fast travel tunels", "prepaer some cusine". "I will give you a Kennel build it mon the farm", "becasue", "sotries" and "piggy buisness"
  • Multiple music tracks sometimes play at the same time
  • Music abruptly stops when you start talking to some NPCs
  • Quests can be done out of order. I found Harold and got him to be a client of the shop before Mark asked me to do it. Then Harold asked me to rebuild his house, standing in front of his brand new house
  • The performance could be better. It's generally really bad when there's a lot of trash on the screen, and my main motivator for tidying the whole map is to improve the FPS
  • There's an enemy robot permanently stuck inside Harold's home as I could click on the house before the enemies were killed
  • Animals on the farm get stuck on their pens and on the other side of fences, if their pen is against a fence
  • Sometimes, no matter what you're hovering over, the game shows you a tooltip for the same item. You pick up whatever tooltip it's showing, which means no matter what I'm hovering over, it will pick up a potato
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