Conarium analysis. Graveyard of other times

Written by Kamran Haider

What was originally a scientific expedition in Antarctica is truncated by increasingly strange events. Like Frank Gilman and with our altered memories, we must discover what has happened to the rest of the team, as we enter this adventure inspired by the writings of HP Lovecraft. Conarium analysis.

There is so much talk that it is almost cliché: transferring the writings of HP Lovecraft to the cinema is a company of little success. Perhaps because the stories of the teacher work in a spectrum of subtlety that, much of the director’s skill, tarnish with the cruel image. Not surprisingly, almost all his myths are narrated from the intimate perspective of the character. It works better in the field of the psychological than in the field of action, and therefore it is not strange that pages and pages follow one another in the head of the narrator without there being an iota of movement beyond his sweeping adjectival.

Video games, deep down, the sin of the same factor. They are shocking and on more than one occasion, the temptation to place a weapon in the player’s hands or deal with the “monster” was and is simply too powerful. In the end, Providence’s genius universe works best when the creative is able to be inspired by him rather than literally based on his universe. Conarium does a little of all this, both for its failures and for its successes. He wants to be close to the Primal myth, but with space. He wants to manage this world, but with its rules.

The best thing is not to be deceived by your trailers or the first impression that you can produce. Conarium is not the nth horror game where progress “hiding from the monster” with scarce resources and no weapons. It is, quite simply, a graphic adventure. And classic. Of those who barely die (although yes, it ever happens) and where everything works at the service of the everlasting puzzle. One focused exclusively on the mechanics of finding and opening the closed door that allows us to advance to the next closed door. And the next one. And the next one.

And forgive there the pride of language, but we have opened many doors and searched for many keys. All types. From the simplest and most mundane to those camouflaged on elevator levers. From those that form ancient megalomaniacs to poisonous herbs that impede our progress. Conarium is simple in its demand to the player, to the point that it brushes on occasion the suspension of the most credulous when a complicated alien architecture is reduced to the mere use of a portentous and simple hinge.other gods

The 3 or 4 hours of play take you through a lovecraftian museum that stimulates the imagination

It would not matter so much if the end justified the means. Because if I have learned something in all these years of graphic adventures behind my back, it is the good or bad conjugation of the puzzle with the narration. On the way to solving the puzzle, the puzzle is used as a purpose to examine and explore the environment. To achieve clues with which to move forward and in turn build the narrative enigma with remnants of new information, that will catch you in its history and keep you moving until you know what is on the other side of the threshold. Conarium applies the formula and keeps the attention, but almost always uses and abuses the easy use of the note found to learn more about what is happening around us, instead of trying to do it with images.

The other gods

Thus, step by step, door to door, begins and continues our descent into dementia. Conarium is inspired, not based, on Lovecraft’s short novel In the Mountains of Madness. And although you can literally read in its description that “it narrates, for the most part, the events after the original story.”, The truth is that this statement is not entirely correct since it neither recovers the characters of the work nor their intentions to continue the icy horror. What Zoetrope Interactive It is here, rather, to rescue the scene, that inhospitable and unknown Antarctica and its Primordial inhabitants and mix it even with beings belonging to other stories, such as those of The City without a Name, in a very interesting, though the not scrupulously canonical view of Writer.

Even so, I would recommend more than one fan to play it, if he knows what to expect. It is not intended to create a true cosmic horror, but to amaze you with its world and its prose. Neither place yourself in a hostile environment or play with sanity, because the encounters with enemies are purely anecdotal, but if you are able to solve their puzzles without worrying too much, the three or four hours of play take you through a Lovecraftian museum that stimulates the imagination , as the scarce human architecture is giving rise to the Primordial, and that you will enjoy more by recognizing its references if you have read the book and the descriptions of that being with “yellowish head in the form of a starfish” or that “joint report of bubbling protoplasm with myriads of ephemeral eyes ».

The Unreal Engine 4, who is responsible for giving life to the nightmare, takes refuge too much in the dark and does not finish lighting up and shine something more until the final measures, at which point the game tries to reveal some of his cards and seeks the complicity of the player with its winks, references and alternative endings, as well as secrets for anyone who wants to shop around with more attention to detail in search of their own trophies and all the writings to be found. On the way to the two finals that we have found, we have seen potential behind the work of this Turkish study of just three members and that we hope to continue seeing developed in future games, if possible, with fresher and more daring ideas that encourage us with genuine Curious to know what’s on the other side of the door.

Recommended: Analysis of Planet Zoo, a fun and very creative management game


Conarium, unlike what it may seem at first, is not so much a horror game as a linear puzzle adventure, where going down under the mountains of madness to the depths of the nightmare, based, but not reliably, in the work of Lovecraft. A recommended experience especially for fans of the writer.

  • The attractive setting for HP Lovecraft fans
  • Different endings, statistics, secrets, and diaries to find
  • Something simple and repetitive in its puzzle mechanics
  • The Unreal Engine 4 can give much more of itself
  • The dubbing leaves much to be desired on some occasions

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Kamran Haider

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