In House of 1000 Doors: Family Secrets the player takes the role of Kate Reed an author who feels that her life successes might be behind her given she is suffering from writer's block. She is rather desperate for something she can regain some of her former status using her psychic abilities. A package arrives which contains a rather strange invitation to classes on the supernatural. Optimistic that this could be a sign Kate attends in hopes of new experiences and the chance to meet other mediums. The invitation describes a séance which allows all that attend to talk with other famous mediums. During the séance she talks with her dead grandmother who request she locate and enter a Haunted House that materializes briefly at different locations in space and time. In the ‘House of 1000 Doors’ Kate encounters many supernatural lost spirits and using her psychic powers to help them move on to another plane of existence. Kate will also be called upon by her dead grandmother to solve a long forgotten murder that can help restore and repair her grandmother’s legacy.
The player interface and game mechanics provide a hybrid approach of graphical adventure with on screen movement touch points, puzzles and hidden-object search style game play. Objects collected in inventory at the bottom of the screen require the player to drop or drag them onto other items in the scenes to activate or complete needed tasks for progression. Hidden object scenes are somewhat traditional with word objects at the bottom. Some scene objects must be opened, moved or used to finally reveal the object to be found. Objects requiring this function are listed in a different colored text.