Canines Find Their Place in Home Free

Dogs have become prominent side-kicks in a few big triple-A games lately, but none of them dared to explore the possibility of controlling one. Home Free is about the life and times of a stray dog in a metropolis.

Home Free is an open-world RPG, though “dog simulator” seems like an apt descriptor as well. Players control a canine (one out of about a dozen breeds, there could be more) and wander a city. The metropolis is randomly generated and creates a different experience for each playthrough. It’s filled with a variety of places and activities for canine adventurers, such as dumpsters, dog parks, food vendors, and the occasional dog-friendly person.

The player has a lot of flexibility in deciding how to “roleplay” their dog. There are a few methods to acquiring food. Foraging from dumpsters is one option (it may pay off to find best spots). The pup may try to tempt some humans into “donating” food by performing cute tricks. Alternatively, the dog can steal something, but risk getting caught by the chasing victim.

Two-legged creatures aren’t the only inhabitants of the city. Players encounter lots of other four-legged friends or foes in Home Free. Some will be outright hostile and attack on sight, protecting their territory, but others can be befriended. A friendly sniff here and there, some chasing and play, and players can run their own pack of dogs.

The canine life simulator is off to a strong start on Kickstarter, earning nearly $20,000 of its $50,000 goal. The minimum pledge to secure a game key (estimated delivery November 2016) is $15. Those who can’t get enough of dog madness should be happy to know that pledging for the game also grants a copy Dog Park, a 4-player dog battling game. One of the stretch goals brings cats to Home Free. The game is planned for Windows and Mac.

Stay updated on Home Free by following its creator, Kevin Cancienne, on Twitter.


Luke has wide interests in games, from compelling fighting, action, and RPG titles to deeper interactive, storytelling titles that push today's genres and boundaries - especially awesome if they're related to diversity. Feel free to reach out on Twitter or via email.

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