– H.P. Lovecraft
Lovecraftian games’ reviews on the way!
Lately, I’ve been getting into the works of H.P. Lovecraft (again) and decided to check out some games based on his style of horror-fiction. I really like his idea that forbidden knowledge is attainable, but that a human will go mad trying to obtain it. I greatly enjoy that not all the answers will ever be available and sometimes things don’t make sense. I also really, really love that most of his stories are highly psychological. I also revel in how he peppers in things like superstitions, older-than-time fanatical and secretive cults and religions, unpredictability, fate, and a host of other things. I admire his ability to set into words a hauntingly beautiful atmosphere. There were other writers who came before and after him who were similar (Edgar Allen Poe, Stephen King), but because of the bizarreness in his writings he made up, he stands out for me.
The process of delving into the black abyss is to me the keenest form of fascination. – H. P. Lovecraft
I spent a few days researching good Lovecraftian(ish) games and thanks to a huge Steam sale over the 4th of July sort of weekend, was able to get 13.5 games (.5 as one was a remaster included with the original), plus an official DLC for one game all under $30 US. I took advantage of bundle offers, too so I could get a whole series for less. Most of the games below are considered Indie (except for Myst) and can be quick to play, but I wasn’t expecting Skyrim-like content for around $3 US or less a game. There are a few others I want to get, but I’ll wait for those. Probably when there is another sale. ^_^
The list of games I’ve gotten so far are:
- Amnesia: The Dark Descent
- Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs
- Darkness Within: In Pursuit of Loath Nolder
- Darkness Within 2: The Dark Lineage (The Director’s Cut)
- Kraven Manor
- Layers of Fear
- Penumbra: Overture
- Penumbra: Black Plague
- Penumbra: Requiem (Black Plague’s DLC)
- The Room
- The Room Two
- The Vanishing of Ethan Carter
- The Vanishing of Ethan Carter Redux (review)
- realMyst: Masterpiece Edition (not in the same horror categories, nor really Lovecraftian, but one I’ve been wanting for a while)
Games I’m looking at getting in the future:
- Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth (maybe)
- Blackbay Asylum (maybe)
- Inner Voices
- Penumbra: Necrologue (unofficial continuation of the Penumbra series allowed by the original developers and can be bought on Steam)
- Penumbra: Twilight of the Archaic (unofficial closure of the series allowed by the original developers)
- Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened – Remastered Edition
- The Infectious Madness of Doctor Dekker
- The Room Three (only available as an app right now so we’ll see what device I play it on)
Games I already have that have Lovecraftian elements in them (besides those listed above):
- The Elder Scrolls series Skyrim‘s “Dragonborn” DLC
- Hermaeus Mora is a noodly-appendaged god, he hoards knowledge, and his realm deals with all kinds of knowledge, forbidden or otherwise.
- One of his most powerful objects he controls is a book called Oghma Infinium, which contains forbidden knowledge.
- One of the “black books,” also powerful books by Hermaeus Mora, entitled The Sallow Regent which seems to the inspired by The King in Yellow, a collection of short stories written by Robert W. Chambers in 1895 which Lovecraft incorporated into his works.
- The Elder Scrolls series Oblivion
- Fallout 3
- Fallout 4
- A lot of games made by Bethesda use Lovecraftian references.
Some other games that are strongly influenced but I doubt I’ll play anytime soon:
- Bloodborne (PS4 only)
- Dead Space
- The Last Door
- The Last Door: Season 2
- The Mass Effect series
- Quake (played it before, but not going to buy again)
- Shrouded in Sanity
- …and a ton more, just search on Steam for “Lovecraft.”
The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown. – H. P. Lovecraft