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Conarium

Conarium is a chilling Lovecraftian game that follows the gripping story of four scientists and their endeavour to challenge what we normally consider to be the "absolute" limits of nature. Inspired by H.P. Lovecraft's novella At the Mountains of Madness, but largely set after the original story. You, as Frank Gilman, open your eyes inside a room filled with strange, pulsating noises. Patterns of lights executing a Danse Macabre on the walls is presented by a queer device on the table. Having recalled nothing other than that you’re in Upuaut, an Antarctic base located near the South Pole, you find the place deserted and have a distinct feeling of something being terribly wrong. Somehow knowing that your memories cannot guide you enforces a strange feeling of vulnerability, a familiar yet alien sensation of being a part of a peculiar whole...
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Game Discussion

Review by Anonymous
Review from Steam

Conarium tackles the difficult task of capturing Lovecraft’s ephemeral psychological horrors and, for the most part, pulls it off. Sometimes clumsy, sometimes streamlined, sometimes elegant, Conarium is an effective piece of Lovecraftian fiction that does its best to respect the source material while adapting it to an effective interactive experience.

Review from Steam

If you are like me, dead fu**ing tired of jumpscare based horror games, then this game is for you. Also, this is probably one of the best Lovecraftian games in general.

Review from Steam

I don't understand the negative reviews. This is, by far, the best game set in the Cthulu Mythos universe I've come across. If you've read The Mountains of Madness you can really tell how much effort and love went into this game to replicate that authentic lovecraftian atmosphere, and this shows in the writing especially. I guess that's what I care about when it comes to Lovecraft adaptations - writing and atmosphere. And this game nails both of those things. I don't have much to say about the gameplay. It's difficult to make slow-burn and exploration-based gameplay interesting, but this game does it and it works. Pick up every clue, read every letter, and you'll know what I mean.

Review from Steam

I have evolved into the Third Eye. -*-

Review from Steam

Conarium – Review by 188man
-Spoiler Free-
Conarium is a lovecraftian horror game that was developed by Stormling Studios and published by
Iceberg Interactive in 2017. This game is in first person which is quite similar to many games of the same genre, Monstrum or Amnesia comes to mind.
Mouse & keyboard controls are quite easy to learn as you adapt to them quickly when the game gives you on-screen instructions. Above all, it seems rather easy to control so absolutely no problems there. Almost every action is automatic so no inventory interacting is required, just click and if you have the required item, you can proceed. Very elementary stuff.
When it comes to graphics, it's quite good, considering it's an indie game. The levels are richly colored and the lighting is excellent, every object is brightly showed with high detail. I don't have any qualms about the visuals what so ever.
The architecture is probably the most impressive perspective wise, because it is meant to be otherworldly, so kudos to the level designers. Alien like statues and ornamentation decorate the crumbling halls for most of the game, although some sections are in typical Victorian interior construction. This provides a stark contrast between the worlds. Quite a well spring of lovecraftian graphic design.
I love the sound design whether it be sound effects or music; everything seems very well made. Atmosphere is thick with the sounds of decrepit ruins and echoing abominations untold. Immersion is well earned through these elements, a pair of headphones is definitely recommend for full enjoyment. If you want to get the OST, you can find it in the DLC list of this game on steam.
The narrative is intriguing to say the least. I got swept up very quickly through the experience. Letters, diaries and notes are scattered around the levels as well as flashbacks that you watch first hand. It's very well told, as are many Lovecraft-esque stories.
The game runs for about 4-5 hours, which is short in this day & age of video games. However i think it's quite appropriate, as the gameplay would get stale after a while. It's not a complex game, infact this title falls more into the visual novel category more than anything else. For this fact, it does lend itself to the idea it is a lovecraft story.
When it comes to difficulty, their's practically little of it. You do encounter puzzles but for the most part they're easy to solve. Many would regard this as a walking simulator, which is not unfounded i would say. 'Dear Esther' comes to mind whenever that phrase is coined, i personally don't agree. Their are challenges but they few and far between.
Overall I think it's a good game to go through. However I can imagine many people will be disappointed for the sheer lack of scares or survival elements. It's all about the storytelling and atmosphere for the most part.
I'm a lovecraft fan so i liked this one very much.
7/10
A good game, short but sweet.

Review from Steam

+ Advantages :
- A very respectful tribute to the world of Lovecraft
- Lots of things to see, to read
- Some nice easter eggs
- Big work on the atmosphere, oppressive at will
- Neat atmo / ambient soundtrack
- Drawbacks :
- Some rhythm concerns
- Primarily reserved for Lovecraft fans
- Riddles too rare and too simple
- Lack of finishing sometimes painful
Summary : You have to love Lovecraft's writings, or at least have devoured The Hallucinated Mountains to fully appreciate Conarium, which knows how to reproduce with great respect and ease the oppressive and palpable atmosphere of the author's short story. The work on the writing and the atmosphere is to be welcomed, and manages to erase the small defects which punctuate the 4 hours of the adventure. If, on the other hand, you are a stranger to the author's work, Conarium could just as easily be a good entry point to the writer's formidable mythology than a somewhat crippling walking simulator, which is not enough anyway, not to himself to gain unanimity.
14/20

Review from Steam

8/10
Conarium has many references to Lovecraft's works; Nameless City, Whisperer in the Darkness, Shadow out of Time, Dagon, At the Mountains of Madness to name a few. Albeit jumbled, it is faithful to the atmosphere of Cthulhu mythos and recommended to HP Lovecraft fans all around.