Kelly has recently returned home to Nebraska from school. Having been distant while she was out on her own, she’s gone out for a drive and is about to head home. That’s where Three Fourths Home begins.
Three Fourths Home is a generally visually simple visual novel. The graphics in the game are mainly just corn fields with an occasional building or object coming up. The focus here is on the story – Kelly is on the phone with her family when a bad storm strikes. She has to try and drive home, hope a tornado doesn’t touch down near here, and argue with her family over some things.
You don’t get much of a backstory in Three Fourths Home, though some is there. You’re sort of just initially dumped into this situation and need to try and care about the characters. You can make a choice of how you wish to respond, though in general the choices don’t really seem to actually change much. It would’ve been nice to see more changes in what happened based off of what you say.
That is, of course, if you can actually read the font. The text appears on a white background in a sometimes harder to read font colour. While you can adjust it to be bolder, it can still be a bit hard to read sometimes. It’s also really tough on the eyes to be trying to read something like that on a white background for a longer period of time.
While I did find issues with the lack of overall control of the story, I did enjoy it. I did wish I could have gotten to know the characters a bit more however. The ending still has me questioning what actually happened, and I do wish I could find out more of what happened there. There is an epilogue, although it seemed to me to be more of a prologue. Perhaps I’m wrong, but the way I interpreted it was that it happened before since it implied that she hadn’t been in contact with her family for quite some time.
My issues with Three Fourths Home come in the form of the controls. For some reason it was decided that you need to hold down a key – D on the keyboard, a trigger button on controller – to drive. There’s no way to set an auto drive. Considering you’re looking at around 1 ½ hours for this VN, that’s a long time to have to be holding a single key/button. There’s also some useless keys such as being able to turn on/off your headlights. I saw no purpose to these even being there. You also can’t even advance unless you’re holding down the drive, so yeah, it’s required to do so and fairly annoying.
There are also some bonuses to browse through in Three Fourths Home. You can browse through the images from Kelly’s final project, listen to all the music from the game, and read the stories her brother wrote. The stories will keep you busy for quite some time, should you choose to actually read through them and not just quickly skip through for the achievement attached. This is a nice little bonus after you’ve gone through the main story.
It does look quite good. Simple enough but it gets the point across. And while the sound is generally just going to be the sound of rain, the sounds and music help set the mood and help you get even more invested into what’s going on in the conversation.
I’m still torn on whether or not I want to suggest this game. On one hand, I did enjoy it, on the other the fact I had to constantly hold down a button to drive got annoying. It was also a bit hard to read the text at times, and a greater ability to affect the outcome would have been great. The epilogue is nice for this as it does actually have choices that affect the outcome of the story. Do you choose to be a total jerk to your mom by ignoring her, lie to her, or just tell her everything? That part was great, I only wish that it had been like that the main part of the game. I do think I will go with a yes, I recommend this VN though – just be warned about having to hold down a button to advance the story!
Three Fourths Home: Extended Edition Review Score
Three Fourths Home is available now on Steam.