About This Game
Call of Cthulhu, the official videogame inspired by Chaosium’s classic pen and paper RPG, brings you deep into a world of creeping madness and shrouded Old Gods within Lovecraft’s iconic universe.
1924. Private Investigator Pierce is sent to look into the tragic death of the Hawkins family on the isolated Darkwater Island. Soon enough, Pierce is pulled into a terrifying world of conspiracies, cultists, and cosmic horrors.
Nothing is as it seems. Sanity is an irregular bedfellow, all too often replaced by whisperings in the dark. Strange creatures, weird science, and sinister cults dominate the Cthulhu Mythos, intent on realizing their mad schemes to bring about the end of everything.
Your mind will suffer – between sanity and psychosis, your senses will be disrupted until you question the reality of everything around you. Trust no one. Slinking shadows hide lurking figures… and all the while, the Great Dreamer prepares for his awakening.
- Requires a 64-bit processor and operating system
- OS: Windows 7/8/10 (64 bits)
- Processor: Intel Core i5-3450 (3.1 GHz)/AMD FX-6300 (3.5 GHz)
- Memory: 8 GB RAM
- Graphics: 2 GB, GeForce GTX 660/Radeon HD 7870
- Storage: 13 GB available space
- Additional Notes: INTERNET CONNECTION REQUIRED FOR GAME ACTIVATION
The good stuff:
– If you’re a Lovecraft tart like me, you’ll likely enjoy the hell out of the atmosphere and the setting.
– Love the audio.
– The dialogue is MOSTLY good. It fits.
– I’m on chapter 3 and I don’t think I can put it down, now that we’re getting into the story.
– The protag is quite likeable. It’s nice to play as a character who has problems and feels like a person, not a hero.
– No crashes so far, but this may vary for other players & builds, so don’t take my word for it.
– Investigating and evidence gathering is interesting.
– Like Arkham Horror and Mansions of Madness in a video game form, which is a big plus for me, as I love those board games.
Things to improve:
– The animations. Seriously, they feel half♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ No excuses; please take the time to work on them and give us a patch with improvements.
– The camera/focus is all over the place at times. (Example: jumps from character to character in an awkward way.)
– FOV, or lack of it. Again, hopefully it’ll be adressed.
Edit: Finished it and loved it. My husband also got a copy and his playthrough is coming along quite differently from mine. There’s definitely at least two playthroughs worth of content here.
As a big fan of Lovecraft, I was very excited about this game, and even purchased and played through the 2006 game Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth in anticipation. But after finishing this latest installment in the mythos, I am quite disappointed.
This game wasn’t necessarily bad. It was generally fun, with only a few minor flaws in the gameplay and some things that could have been better polished. The main things that bother me are its length, story, and its relation to the Cthulhu mythos.
It took me 11 hours to complete this game, but it felt like it shouldn’t have been nearly that long. The game’s 14 chapters are largely cutscenes, and in the times when you do get to explore a bit, you are usually limited to an extremely small area. Interact with a couple of items in the area and it’s on to the next cutscene and the next chapter.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t normally have a problem with cutscenes. I appreciate a good story-driven game, but the story here left a lot to be desired. The characters were very interesting, but they weren’t used well. Some of their relationships with each other and with the overall plot still didn’t make sense by the end of the game, and there were a lot of untied loose ends that left me quite unsatisfied.
On top of those things, this game really didn’t have much to do with the Cthulhu mythos. There were passing references to Arkham, Miskatonic University, Professor Armitage, and the Necronomicon. And the game did focus on concepts of insanity, forbidden knowledge, and occultism, which typically characterize Lovecraft’s work. But the story didn’t feel like it was built around those concepts the same way the mythos is meant to be. Instead, it felt like they were simply running down a checklist of things they had to include to be able to use Cthulhu in the title.
There was one especially significant way in which the game diverges from Lovecraftian fiction. The whole genre of cosmic horror which Lovecraft developed is meant to exploit our fear of things that are unknown, unfamiliar, and overshadowing. Things that we are powerless to fight against and that are often too strange to even comprehend. Bizarre alien species, inconceivably massive and ancient entities, and even unknowable horrors are what make the Cthulhu mythos truly terrifying. But instead of using these things, the developers opted for a generic, forgettable, humanoid monster. Even the otherworldly being you meet later in the game is nothing more than a transparent human being.
In short, this game really isn’t about Cthulhu, beyond some very loose references to Lovecraft’s writings, the inclusion of Cthulhu in the title, and his very brief appearance in one of the potential endings. At best, this is a run-of-the-mill horror game with some allusions to the Cthulhu mythos. Not a bad game, but not good at being what it wants to be either.
If you want a good Cthulhu game, I would recommend going back to Dark Corners of the Earth. It is much more true to the spirit of the mythos, and was an overall more satisfying experience, despite being dated. Better yet, pull up some Lovecraft audiobooks on YouTube and let them play while you relax. Just be sure to keep the lights on…
+ Well written adventure story, with lots of twists and turnabouts
+ Very atmospheric
+ Suitable for every Lovecraftian fan
+ Investigation part of the game is great
+ Amazing voice acting
+ Your skill points contribution really matters here
+ Detective game as its finest
+ Rich well-written characters with their own motives each
– Graphic feels a bit outdated sometimes
– Stealth and combat missions are one of the most awkward things I have ever seen in video games
– Chapters are short and don’t use one given length, one chapter can be finished in 20 minutes, while other can last for around 2 hours
– Some cliche elements
Well, first of all, it’s important to say that I am not a big Lovecraftian fan, however I was waiting for this game and was pretty hyped. When it comes to atmospheric games, I can’t help myself and prefer to play them straight away rather than skipping. Then it turned out that I mixed up this game with another one Lovecraftian themed product that is about to release in six months. I felt a bit awkward about that, but then I said like: “Well, okay, not a big deal” and headed to explore the game.
The main problem of Call of Cthulhu is that if someone would ask me what genre is this game, it would be a great problem for me to answer this question. It seems like developers tried to offer you as much as it’s possible, fitting literally everything in one game and it didn’t work. At the end we see a good and potential game, that feels like a bit of unfinished product.
In Call of Cthulhu we meet Edward Piece, a private investigator who suffers from alcoholism, lack of sleep and depression – full package of troublesome human qualities to portray a perfect dramatic hero. The moment game starts, we already see how bad is everything for this guy: he has to close some cases as soon as possible, otherwise his license will be discarded.
And guess what? This guy is so damn lucky enough, that straight after this phone call, informing him about this situation, a stranger knocks at his door and brings him a new case. How convenient, huh? Edward doesn’t see much of choice here, although he is not very happy with this case and especially that fact that he has to go to the creepy island to explore it and investigate what happened to Hawkins family.
The main thing in Call of Cthulhu that developers were trying to achieve was immersive mechanics. Literally your every action will affect the future and the game doesn’t stop to continually reminds you about this. Even in the first minutes of actual gaming, you have a choice to drink or not to drink a glass of whiskey on your desk and even this action will affect your story somehow. I guess that this kind of approach was made to show you straight at the first seconds of the game how important it is to think twice before every action here.
It starts like a classic first person adventure game. At the beginning of the game you have to choose your starting stats for skills and it’s important to say that this choice will determine at least the beginning of your game kinda seriously. For example, you can spend this point straight into strength skill to deal with the problems in a hard way or maybe you feel like you rather spend it to psychology branch or even eloquence to have an ability to talk out any problem, using your mental abilities. So, during the conversation with someone, if you have a level high enough to do this or that action, the game will allow you to do this, but you can also try a different approach and if your level of the required skill is low, you will be granted a possibility to test your luck and see the outcome. However, based on my experience, I can say that every time I was testing a skill with a low level, I always failed.
And then it proceeds straight to the investigation process, where you have to gather clues and come to a certain conclusion regarding this or that situation. They even implemented their own recreating process of the events, similar how it was done in Detroit:Become Human and Arkham Series game, where you can see the events using your imagination and deducting methods, based on the objects you see around the crime scene. However, well, it’s implemented quite poor and definitely needed more polish, I had a strong feeling like developers were rushing somewhere and didn’t give more time to this feature at all.
Then something really weird happens. After about two hours of pure investigation gameplay, where you only walk around numerous different places and talk to strangers and gather clues, the whole gameplay changes. It doesn’t actually change forever, it’s just adding a new mechanics, something to dilute the whole gameplay a little bit and to remind the player that we are in a horror game now, after all. It adds a few hide and seek levels, where you have to be smarter than your enemy, hide and run away. This part of the gameplay was completely ridiculous. And don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against this kind of gameplay, especially in horror game, but once again, it was implemented really really bad. I was walking right near the enemy, just two steps away, right in front of his nose and he didn’t see me. Another time when the similar situation happened to me again, he didn’t even bother to run after me and check the closet, that I entered right in front of him. I was really confused by these levels, seriously.
There is no combat in this game, just closer to the end of the game, you will have a few really weird moments, where you will be given a gun to shoot enemies. But it’s not even shooting, you don’t have to aim there or bother yourself with ammo, it’s just like an arcade little mini-game: see an enemy, press the button, pooh! – he is dead.
But it’s important to state, that despite all these missed opportunities and poorly developed game mechanics, Call of Cthulhu has a pretty intriguing and interesting story. Closer to the middle of the game you will barely understand what the heck is going on and where is the reality and where you go insane. Because you can go insane here pretty much easily, if you get too carried away with occultism. And that leads us to understanding that there are multiple endings in Call of Cthulhu and every choice matters here.
Sometimes graphics feel a little bit outdated here, but it doesn’t change the fact that the game is very atmospheric and it certainly has its own style, you know. When you explore the old mansion or try to escape the creepy labirints somewhere in the caves and hear all these terrifying sounds and voices in your head, it really makes you nervous. Of course, I can’t say that this is the most horrific game ever, but it certainly copes with its work.
For me, it’s pretty much simple to recommend this game for someone who counts himself as a true Lovecraft fan, who loves intriguing and mysterious stories with a bunch of twists and unexpected moves. If you enjoy games with a well done narrative stuff, you are pretty much good to go. Just be ready for the weird things regarding gameplay, that I mentioned above.
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A pretty well written adventure story, with some twists that actually threw me off.
Its got a ton of atmosphere throughout.
It has some pretty good visual design for the lovecraftian elements.
Voice acting is pretty good overall, and I enjoyed the character interactions.
The detective segments (most of the game) and dialogues are enjoyable.
Stealth (around about 10% of the game) isn’t not great.
Combat is awful, it shouldv’e been left out. Thankfully its only for one pretty short section in the late game, but should have just been cut.
The graphics are ok, but not mind blowing.
The length of the game felt a little front loaded. The sections in the early game feel more fleshed out. The last few chapters are a lot more linear and rushed.
The RPG systems didn’t feel like they made a very big difference, and a couple of the stats feel a little useless. Strength didn’t seem all that useful, for example.
After waiting for this game for a good while, I can say I came away from it having enjoyed it overall. Its a solid experience pretty much the whole time. I do wish it was purely puzzles/exploration and conversational gameplay, but those elements do make up the vast majority of the game.
It took me ~7 hours to beat, I do wish it was a little longer, but only by a couple more hours to flesh out the world and characters a little more. There are some choices and story moments that don’t go anywhere and the chapter breaks can be a little jarring at times.
I would however still recommend this game to anyone who enjoys atmospheric games. I wouldn’t say its very scary, but it’s got a sense of unease throughout.
I would absolutely love to see this development team tackle another game in a Lovecraftian setting. They have a very good start here.
Beat the game in just under 8 hours trying to find everything, but apparently missing quite a bit. It’s good for two playthroughs (sane and insane). There are 4 endings, which I’ve already gotten two since it’s very easy to go back and change things to get a different ending once you’ve beaten it. Realistically you can only get two endings per playthrough, because again, sane and insane make a difference. It’s purely an investigation RPG, so don’t expect combat. There’s a very small section of the game you get to use a gun but it’s more along the lines of "push button if you want this NPC to die", there’s no aiming or anything. Not even an ammo counter. Again, essentially NO COMBAT.
Choices matter kinda, but not nearly as much as you’d hope. Most unlock dialogue options if anything. The choices that make the most impact are the ones regarding your sanity, and those ones are pretty clear. It felt like most of the decisions I spent time mulling over never made a real difference, which was a dramatic disappointment. I’ll update this part if I do another playthrough.
Gameplay can be… rough. There are short stealth sections that play like Outlast, as in enemies with set routes that are incredibly easy to get around once you figure it out, if they see you you have the opportunity to run and hide. This is also unfortunately super easy to do. Despite the fact the main character seems to run at a mallwalker pace, you can escape most enemies without too much trouble. Most of the game revolves around dialogue and using your skills in dialogue, and while there are some actual skill checks akin to the tabletop game, I have no idea if these checks succeeded because they don’t tell you if they succeed or not. Most skill checks in dialogue are threshold based, where if your skill is high enough you have that dialogue skill option. These also help with the reconstruction scenes, which are fun an interesting but can get bogged down by trying to find whatever tiny thing the game wants you to find that isn’t super obvious until you’ve done 4-5 laps around the room.
The story and investigation part of the game really shine though, you don’t have to pay attention but if you do there are dozens of "aha" moments when pieces start falling together, especially if you go through your clues. I was mostly interested in this game for the storytelling so I got exactly what I wanted out of it. I played from when the game was released to when I finished it, and I never once thought of stopping because I was so interested in the story. Should be noted though that I’m a huge Lovecraft fan so people unfamiliar with his stories and themes of not knowing wtf is going on until it’s too late might not like it as much.
My biggest issue with it personally is there is a very abrupt point of no return that’s unlike many other games, in that you can’t even open the character menu anymore with all your clues and everything you’ve found in the game. The button simply stops working. So, once you get past a certain point near the end, if you want to review the clues in the game and reread them for extra story exposition, you can’t. You’d have to start the game completely over and find them all over again. I didn’t read some stuff because I was near the end and excited to finish but now I never can unless I playthrough again and again max out my Spot Hidden skill.
Overall I’d recommend if you like Lovecraft’s stories and want something true to the source material.
The first 5 chapters were still pretty cool, atmospheric and haunting…
But then everything started to get really REALLY boring.
No real surprises along the way, no real freedom of my actions,
and so many whole levels felt like pure filler!
No, I really can’t recommend this.
The old "Call of Cthulhu – Dark Corners of the Earth" might have been
cheesy and buggy as hell – but at least it was fun to play und had very varied
The core mechanic RPG-element of this game was kind of interesting, but to see
it’s real effects I would have to play the game again – and I can’t bring myself to do that.
– HPL Universe.
– Good story
– it actually gives you multiple endings, based on your actions in the game.
– it’s rich with HPL lore, if you actually go looking for it.
– Janky animations
– some plot holes
– a few visual bugs
to be fair, I reccomend this game. I wouldn’t buy it full price, so go for it when there’s a sale.
so ye, I give it a thumbs up.
But do take it with a pinch of salt. it really gives you the ” Indie developer” feeling when you play it.
Unashamedly overpriced! ~15€ seems legit.
I strongly recommend editing the ini-files:
→ No option to turn off motion blur in-game
→ Unstable frame rate, if you don’t set a limit
…too shallow to be tagged as an actual RPG!
• Underdeveloped dialogue and skill system
• The puzzles are just idle work (no-brainers)
• Few, poorly implemented action sequences
• The decisions you’ll make rarely play a role
• Promising start but uncharitable ending(s)
Low, Medium, High, Epic; 1080p, 60hz
(benefits a lot from 4k; Ø 60 fps aswell)
Windows 10 Professional, 64-Bit
Intel ® Core™ i7-7700K, 4 x 4.2 GHz
Nvidia MSI GTX 1080 (8GB GDDR5X)
16GB DDR4 RAM; Samsung 840 EVO
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+A good game for any Lovecraftian fan
+Incredibly well-done voice work and music
+/-Graphically looks nice, however movement of NPCs are awkward especially in regards to dialogue
+/-Gameplay is composed of a few mechanics and leaves a bit of a mediocre taste due to never being too in-depth in any one mechanic
-Takes a good while before things actually start to get interesting, especially if you’re unfamiliar with what’s happening
-Shorter than expected
If you’re here then you probably fall into one of two categories, you’re either already a fan of Lovecraftian works and know your stuff, or you’re simply interested in the title. Not to discourage the latter, but you will more immediately enjoy the game if you fall under the former. It’s not a bad game generally speaking but the pacing and teases that try to get you into the game for the long haul will have less of an effect on you if you don’t already understand certain imagery and such. Now, I’m not a diehard Lovecraftian fan by any means (at least compared to those I’ve met heh), but I’ll go more into why this matters later into the review.
Everything in terms of sound is done very well, be it music or the voices. I particularly enjoyed the voice work as it really helps you get into the mindset and setting of everything that’s happening. Really a note of appreciation.
The game looks nice, from the detail of the rooms to the characters of the world. However, once things go into motion (quite literally), things move in ways that are best described as… awkward. Particularly when you’re in dialogue with another character, while the voice work is very well done the lip sync on the character models themselves don’t always look like they match up. Personally, it seemed far enough off to cause some level of disconnect in terms of my immersion with the game. Another thing is with the camera movements, as the game uses a first-person perspective, whenever your character automatically tries to move to a designated spot for certain dialogue exchanges the way your screen pans around really has an effect on the… seriousness of the situation.
The game has its moments of enjoyability, but not to the point I can give it a “plus”. There are two main mechanics that are made use of: RPG/Detective and Sneaking (there’s technically the use of weapons, but those don’t really count as it’s more a “perform X with item Y”), but these mechanics honestly fall a bit flat in the end. I’m all for variety, but the way these mechanics were utilized felt limiting as you couldn’t be too adventurous with your options. I’ll give a look at each one individually.
RPG/Detective – the game’s strongest and most enjoyable mechanic in my opinion. You have different traits you can upgrade and depending on your expertise in that certain skill new options or observations are made available to you. When investigating you can make more in-depth analyses on certain events when you reconstruct a scene (one of the big things in the game is that you can recreate events to understand what took place). However, you can’t leave a reconstructed scene until everything you need to find has been found. The upgrading of skills may offer new options, but you inevitably end up at the same result, while the game has 4 endings you shouldn’t expect a ton of replay value based on this.
Sneaking – Very weak, AI can be outrun and often times only notice you if you’re the one looking at them (at least that’s how it’s felt for me). I’ve had times when I’m clearly behind cover, yet when I peek to see something I’m quickly noticed. The same applies to interactions with creatures of the supernatural, which was a bit of a letdown. I personally didn’t really enjoy the stealth elements the game implemented due to how the system seemed to work.
So, we’re back to the topic of why exactly this game might not fit the cut of your jib if your new around these parts. While there are a few factors, the main one I want to concentrate on is how long it actually takes to get the ball rolling. Straight up, the game consists of 14 total chapters, and things don’t truly get interesting until you get to about Chapter 5 or 6 (your time can vary on this but it would take about 2-4 hours to get that far). That’s quite a while all things considered, so if you aren’t prepared for this beforehand you may feel like (this game isn’t all that fun, gonna refund it I guess). Fans won’t really see this problem since the early chapters include imagery and teasers for events to come, or they already know what they’re getting into well in advance. So just a little warning for those unaware.
As I mentioned, there are a total of 14 chapters. Not a small number generally speaking, but the pacing isn’t great in several fields, and given how linear the game is, it’s quite easy to breeze through the content even if you’re doing extra activities like checking every door you come across for example. You can finish this as fast as 5-8 hours, or 10-15 hours (rather generous times). It’s a fair game, but it’s shorter than most would expect, so something to keep in mind.
The game lacks a bit in terms of gameplay due to not properly flushing out what they seemingly wanted to do with the mechanics that were implemented, but the game still manages to be fun and interesting, especially once the supernatural starts coming into play. Alas, it takes some time for that to occur in the game, but if you’re willing to dedicate that time then you’ve got an enjoyable narrative-driven game on your hands.
This product was reviewed with a key provided by the Developer(s), rest assured this does not impact the quality of my review in any way.
The new game «Call of Cthulhu» immediately caught my attention with its excellent visual style. All these hallucinogenic horrors, monsters from the darkest corners of Universe, dirty dangerous streets of a degenerate seaside settlement, I liked it all at once. And the very first minutes of the game are being thrown into the labyrinths of caverns that are slippery by mucus and blood, they collide with insane cultists trying to summon their lord from the depths of the ocean. The main character, detective Edward Pierce, who suffers from nightmares and alcoholism, is invited to investigate the death of an entire family in Darkwater. And one glance at this town is enough to understand that something inexplicably creepy is going on here.
Most of the game is a detective investigation, the study of numerous locations, the search for clues that can explain the occurring insane things. All is done with very high quality, the riddles are not too complicated, but not primitive, a careful study of the locations is encouraged by the developers (there are a lot of collection items hidden in the game that diversify the walkthrough). An excellent intense plot moves very smoothly, almost cinematographically, the player is very rarely given a minute of peace and quiet, where nothing happens.
The character’s skills system is primarily aimed at passing the game in various ways, cause many of them can only be accessed with a certain level of skill that makes the game diverse and replayable. The game has several scenes with stealth, and even a couple of scenes with shooting. Here they are made not at such a high level, but they are very few, so it is not even annoying.
All technical aspects of the game are excellent. The game has a great sound, a very nice visual, great optimization. Yes, several times my game freeze on dialogs, but it was not critical at all. I would like, of course, another saving system (because with the autosave system it is very easy to skip collection items).
Call of Cthulhu is a great gift to all fans of Howard Phillips Lovecraft, a very high-quality and well-developed game.
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