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Tacoma [GOG, Steam, Official Site, itch.io], the sci-fi narrative adventure from the developer of Gone Home has officially launched. It includes day-1 Linux support so I took a look.


Please be aware this may contain spoilers, I’ve done my best not to give much away.

Note: The game does not have a SteamOS/Linux icon on Steam, but it can be downloaded and played it’s just not advertised yet. The game has some technical issue with SteamOS directly, which is preventing it being listed. See more info on that here.

Disclosure: Both GOG and the developer sent over keys.

Tacoma is set in the near future of 2088, as a contractor you’ve been sent to investigate the space station Tacoma, which has been abandoned. You’re tasked with piecing together information played out through Augmented Reality, to find out why everyone left. The AR system is like a futuristic “black box” where you literally retrace the exact steps people took.

The AR mechanic where you playback recordings of conversations from the crew is pretty weird at first, but I grew to love it. It’s strange, since some conversations sound a little private and you end up a little like a voyeur peeping into the lives of these people. I mean, it seems to record everything they do, including going to the toilet (not the we see that, but it’s implied).

What made me truly appreciate it, was that I could fast forward and rewind as many times as I wanted to while it was playing. I often thought I misheard something, so a quick key-tap and I would go back a little. It really made it an enjoyable experience, since I’m admittedly a little slow on the uptake at times.

These recorded conversation often happen between multiple groups of people, each having a different conversation. So you will be stopping, walking into another room, rewinding and listening in again. It so weird and unique, but it can end up feeling a little messy. There’s also times you need to interact with other systems while it’s playing, to recover more lost content, like private conversations between crew or or their families.

It’s a very interesting narrative-driven "walking simulator" game, where a lot of it will be spent just standing around and listening to the wireframe characters talk. It’s quite short too, but memorable and I enjoyed it quite a lot. It’s almost like actually being inside a film, with you piecing together the story bit by bit.

I appreciated the diverse cast they had for the game, both in terms of race and sexuality. I'm very open minded when it comes to everything and I thought what they had done with the characters was fantastic. Learning about some of their backstory from their private conversations was a good touch too, especially a certain joke about sunglasses, which I will leave you to discover.

For me, the ending came too soon. I was really getting into the atmosphere of the game, feeling more and more connected with the characters and I feared the worst as the conclusion to their story drew near. The ending though — wow, didn't see that coming!

Very rare for me to play an entire game through in one sitting. Not really a game with huge replay value, given how linear it is. While you go at your own pace and listen in to who you want in any order, the outcome is the same. Still, I found it to be an absolutely fascinating experience overall.

As for the Linux version: It seems the Linux port was done by Aaron Melcher of Knockout Games, who also ported other Linux titles including Darkest Dungeon, Sunless Sea, SOMA and more. He was even listed in the ending credits, which was really nice to see.

The game completely locked up on me twice in my play-through. The developer has been sent a log file, hopefully it helps. Each time my progress was saved just before, so it wasn't really an issue.

There’s also an AR cat you might find in some funny places.
8 Likes, Who?
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scaine 2 August 2017 at 5:35 pm UTC
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Been really looking forward to this, especially since Event[0] seems dead in the water for a Linux port. I'll be buying this shortly!
lidstah 2 August 2017 at 5:41 pm UTC
scaineEvent[0] seems dead in the water for a Linux port.

Noooooooooooooooo . Well, Tacoma might be on my wishlist then, since I'll - normally - be on holidays in two f*****g days and thus will have some time to play some games
scaine 2 August 2017 at 7:05 pm UTC
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lidstah
scaineEvent[0] seems dead in the water for a Linux port.

Noooooooooooooooo . Well, Tacoma might be on my wishlist then, since I'll - normally - be on holidays in two f*****g days and thus will have some time to play some games

Haha! I'd better qualify... I haven't actually heard anything! But that's kind of the problem - silence.

They were super-positive initially in November last year, then hit a Mac problem that took priority (grrr!) a couple of months later, then... nothing. It's been 6 months without an update, so I'm pretty disheartened and trying to be realistic.

Which makes Tacoma, AWESOME. I'm off to buy it now.
Redface 2 August 2017 at 7:50 pm UTC
I just bought this from humble where you get both a steam key and a DRM free download (including the Linux version)
AnxiousInfusion 2 August 2017 at 8:11 pm UTC
Here is a chance for Fullbright to redeem themselves if they can provide a strong narrative-only game that doesn't preach social justice-y trash.
Anjune 2 August 2017 at 8:47 pm UTC
Well, that escalated fast...
Asu 2 August 2017 at 9:27 pm UTC
need that freaking linux os icon before anything happens in my steam client...
Eike 2 August 2017 at 9:32 pm UTC
Would still appreciate an ignore button for some people.
DrMcCoy 2 August 2017 at 9:38 pm UTC
EikeWould still appreciate an ignore button for some people.

I second that.
liamdawe 2 August 2017 at 9:39 pm UTC
DrMcCoy
EikeWould still appreciate an ignore button for some people.

I second that.
I will make that a priority after the admin centre upgrade I'm doing at the moment.
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