Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem GameCube

Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 41 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 41
  2. Negative: 0 out of 41
Buy On
  1. A game that plays you with its unique sanity effects, that forces you to adapt to over a dozen characters and that holds no punches when it comes to the horror of Lovecraftian agents plotting out demise, Eternal Darkness will be a significant milestone in gaming for years to come.
  2. The enemies are repetitive, the puzzles are simple, and players aren't given much freedom to explore, but what is here is fun to play -- thanks to an interesting story, excellent sound effects, and well-animated visuals.
  3. Everything about it is done right. Control is easy to grasp, the audio, graphic, and level designs are top shelf, the storytelling is head and shoulders above most other games, and the Insanity Meter ads a sick twist – it gets the adrenaline pumping.
  4. Cheat Code Central
    100
    It's the little things that start to freak you out. Pounding doors, bleeding walls, out of focus shadows, voices, moving statues, and then things get really messed up.
  5. The most engaging GameCube title for the platform to date.
  6. 100
    The sound is incredible, though. With some of the best music I've ever heard in a videogame, the game is haunting and chilling in all the right places.
  7. Despite its essential linearity, Eternal Darkness leaves the player feeling like he/she has lived through a vast and sweeping tale, and is a milestone GameCube title any way you look at it.
  8. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    82
    I can look past your repetitive combat, formulaic structure and sometimes misleading game design. It's your stylish presentation, puzzles and ability to mess with a guy's head that's gonna make me own you. Literally. [Sept 2002, p.161]
  9. Entertainment Weekly
    100
    A cinematic feel and the trappings of a supernatural thriller. [16 Aug 2002, p.75]
  10. You should buy this game because it's frightening in a way that few games ever have been, and because it's a vividly explored, engrossing narrative the likes of which few out-and-out storytellers like "Final Fantasy" can compete with.
  11. 100
    Developers of 3D games should study the camerawork in "Eternal Darkness." It's quite simply a stunning technical achievement.
  12. Game Informer
    95
    A wonderfully successful psychological thriller meant to screw with gamers' minds, emotions, and fears to the nth degree. [August 2002, p.81]
  13. Great, creepy fun. Although weak combat and arcadey features flaw this endeavor, it's simple to play and very immersive with plenty of dark atmosphere, cool magic effects, and more shuffling zombies than you can fit in a mall.
  14. Apart from a few, more or less insignificant, flaws this game shines or rather consumes all light and delivers an epic story and an experience that hasn't been seen yet on the GameCube and one that hasn't ever quite been realised on any other console.
  15. GameNow
    100
    The variety this setup offers is unprecedented. [August 2002, p.50]
  16. 100
    From cover to cover this game was full of originality.
  17. 90
    With its deftly meshed story lines, deep use of spellcasting, and innovative insanity system, Eternal Darkness is a unique and tasty addition to the survival/horror genre.
  18. If you play through it three times, you get a super ending, which is a nice incentive.
  19. It's a tad on the short side and has a few tiny little gameplay issues, but the overall polish of this game is apparent from beginning to end.
  20. It's one of the most sinister, creepy, literary, and memorable horror games of all time. A classic, even as it lurks in larger games' shadows.
  21. Astounding, involving, creepy, atmospheric.[NGC]
  22. Featuring a gripping story that never lets up, inventive gameplay, sky-high production values, and an attention to detail that is seldom matched, it's an experience like no other.
  23. 87
    Best of all, Eternal Darkness doesn't treat the story as an excuse to kill monsters; you kill monsters as an excuse to advance a great storyline. There's plenty of shock and gore in ED, but it's not afraid to show off its brains either.
  24. Voice acting throughout is superb, and again really gives the whole game an impressive cinematic feel.
  25. I literally got the bejeebers scared out of me when I played it during the midnight hour. Any game that gets under my skin like this one gets my seal of approval.
  26. If you have a semi-firm grasp on reality, don't mind the machinations of evil tugging at your own sanity factor, then you will enjoy this puzzle-riddled romp.
  27. It's the best game on the GameCube and the best game I've played in a very long time.
  28. Camera angles at its best. There is no need to control the camera angle if it's already position in the best possible matter – which seems to be how the camera works all the time. This is perfection at work.
  29. From a gameplay perspective, this game rocks. The controls are easy to get the hang of after a while and unlike Resident Evil, where you move your stick is where your character goes.
  30. GMR Magazine
    80
    The insanity effects are clever [the first time] and the scenery is downright creepy. [Feb 2003, p.96]
  31. 96
    An amazing achievement...a truly intelligent psychological thriller, complete with balanced gameplay and plenty of surprises you'll never forget.
  32. You're not going to find anything like it that outclasses it at all, it's incredible.
  33. The game is so story-driven that it becomes excessively linear. This is not to state that other action titles are so much more non-linear, but Eternal Darkness tends to have only one path through the whole game.
  34. netjak
    86
    It gets a solid four stars, but still is far from perfect.
  35. Nintendo Power
    80
    It's not all about cheap thrills and shock value - it's about head games and psychological horror, too. [July 2002, p.147]
  36. Brilliant, stunning, the best thing on the GameCube since I dropped my soiled undies on it two months ago before I went to bed...It blows "Resident Evil" out of the water.
  37. Play Magazine
    100
    All of this delightful action and horror comes wrapped in a bone-chilling soundtrack with enough chanting and "what the hell was that?" sound effects to sen dyou running for the light switch. [Aug 2002, p.62]
  38. If you want to experience something a bit different and something that will genuinely chill you to the bone, take note; you need this game. Eternal Darkness takes adventuring and horror to levels that "Tomb Raider" and "Resident Evil" will never reach.
  39. 100
    What Eternal Darkness might lack in top-notch graphics it more than makes up for with fantastic gameplay and spine-chilling atmosphere.
  40. 90
    Players who appreciate it will find themselves wanting to play though it again and again.
  41. 90
    A dramatic reworking of the horror-movie clichés beaten to death by "Resident Evil" and its army of clones, and as such is perhaps the first must-have release for Gamecube.

Awards & Rankings

#5 Most Discussed GameCube Game of 2002
#5 Most Shared GameCube Game of 2002
User Score
8.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 166 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 53 out of 68
  2. Negative: 4 out of 68
  1. Jan 19, 2011
    10
    This game will scare you. I didn't believe it was possible to feel so much fear and despair while playing a game. I don't think any otherThis game will scare you. I didn't believe it was possible to feel so much fear and despair while playing a game. I don't think any other horror game past or present has even come close to this one. A classic. Full Review »
  2. Dec 9, 2015
    9
    An expertly created game, this game instills fear into the hearts of gamers. The sanity system is something that will truly make you questionAn expertly created game, this game instills fear into the hearts of gamers. The sanity system is something that will truly make you question the game and the gameplay is innovative, fresh and original. I have heard complaints of clunky controls, but I would rather complain that is how the survival horror genre plays out (for most survival horror games from the day this game was released had clunky controls). The story is truly excellent and has much food for thought. The only true complaint I can find here is that the boss battles of this game are something that you wished were better executed and that the game is rather easy even for a beginner. Full Review »
  3. Dec 7, 2015
    8
    I had this game some months ago, and then I sold it :/. Anyway, This game is a strange gem, because it has a very good history, nice elementsI had this game some months ago, and then I sold it :/. Anyway, This game is a strange gem, because it has a very good history, nice elements (the sanity bar), the music and atmosphere are great. However the graphics are not the best and the controls are clunky, finally sometimes the game is boring. If you have the time and patient this game is for you and probably you will give it a 9 or 10. Full Review »