• Publisher: 2K Games
  • Release Date: Oct 24, 2005
  • Also On: PC
User Score
8.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 36 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 36
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 36
  3. Negative: 6 out of 36

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  1. ms
    Jul 13, 2008
    3
    This is the perfect example of how to script a horror game...it's just not exactly what I'd call the ideal way to make one playable. At first, I was excited to get this game. I mean five years in the making, bragging an advanced sanity system, healing system, and interactive world sounds great...until you actually have to play the damn game. The creators were so hell bent on This is the perfect example of how to script a horror game...it's just not exactly what I'd call the ideal way to make one playable. At first, I was excited to get this game. I mean five years in the making, bragging an advanced sanity system, healing system, and interactive world sounds great...until you actually have to play the damn game. The creators were so hell bent on hyping this game as a "realistic experience" that they forgot one crucial element. It's a damn video game. First of all, five years in development should warrant a few things: Good voice acting, good visuals, and polished gameplay. The gameplay had a lot of potential. It's my belief that first person is tough to implement into stealth and horror because you can't actually see your character model so creeping behind walls is difficult and the stupid peek around the wall mechanic is useless unless you wanna reveal yourself. Secondly, it's near impossible to estimate how far you can jump in this game, which will get you killed many times. The A.I. is generally piss poor as well and glitches on many occasions. The most the A.I. can do is follow and shoot and group together. Nothing intelligent about that. Oh and they can't aim rifles at point blank to save their lives, literally. The interactivity is pretty false too. There are only a few people you can actually talk to in the game on your own without cutscenes and you can't actually use your surroundings to your advantage. You can just observe them and make useless comments about them. Did I mention the voice acting is annoying as all hell? The main character sounds like a complete Nimrod. The graphics ain't much to gawk at either. The environments generally come in a few shades of gray and brown with a little texture thrown in for good measure. The character models are stiff and the monsters are hilariously unscary when you finally see them. As for health packs. Nothing complicated or interesting about it. Somehow you can still walk with two broken legs. How very realistic?? But the worst part about this game is the abused sanity effects. I don't know about you, but my vision doesn't blur when I'm scared. And I don't get vertigo instantly from . Our detective hero is kind of a loose canon really. Everything makes his mental state deteriorate. It's gimmicky and annoying and it fails to make the game scary. Or realistic. In fact, quite the opposite. But to the point. Don't play this game. It's a waste of time and potential. Play Silent Hill 2 or Resident Evil if you want a good scare. This sucked. Expand
  2. DerrickF.
    Nov 11, 2005
    3
    I had eagerly anticipated this game, but put it aside at the point of Fishmen Attack. My reason: after walking the length and breadth of an unwelcoming town without finding even a pointy stick for a weapon, seeing a child ripped to pieces by monster, and finding evidence proving that the innkeeper is a mass murderer, I am forced to follow this same murderer to a room of his choosing and I had eagerly anticipated this game, but put it aside at the point of Fishmen Attack. My reason: after walking the length and breadth of an unwelcoming town without finding even a pointy stick for a weapon, seeing a child ripped to pieces by monster, and finding evidence proving that the innkeeper is a mass murderer, I am forced to follow this same murderer to a room of his choosing and bed down for the night without the option of sneaking out of the building. Of course, the townsmen come for you, and you are forced to flee like an idiot out of a trap that even the most naive player could see coming. While I was willing to try a game devoid of firearms, I was disappointed to play the role of a eunuch incapable of even pimp-smacking his assailants. Anyone giving this game a ten has no Y chromosome. Or wits. Expand
  3. RobB.
    Nov 23, 2005
    2
    While I
  4. JaceN.
    Nov 4, 2005
    2
    Started out okay...but the slap in the face that was the fishermen attack in your room, the degradation into an old fashioned key hunt, the super mario jumping puzzles (im surprised Jack didnt have to make his way through a Levitating Platform Factory over a lava pit) and the annoying as hell mental condition concerns (a way of forcing unfair failure upon you even if your health is high) Started out okay...but the slap in the face that was the fishermen attack in your room, the degradation into an old fashioned key hunt, the super mario jumping puzzles (im surprised Jack didnt have to make his way through a Levitating Platform Factory over a lava pit) and the annoying as hell mental condition concerns (a way of forcing unfair failure upon you even if your health is high) make this a black mark aainst Bethesda and Headfirst. Expand
  5. May 14, 2011
    0
    The idea of a horror game based around HP Lovecraft's "Shadow Over Innsmouth" short story is awesome, and it's a real shame that this game fails to deliver in every way other than the storytelling aspect. The game is way too dark and grey/brown to ever tell what is going on and you can easily overlook elements in the environment. The game doesn't give you an actual weapon until nearly 3The idea of a horror game based around HP Lovecraft's "Shadow Over Innsmouth" short story is awesome, and it's a real shame that this game fails to deliver in every way other than the storytelling aspect. The game is way too dark and grey/brown to ever tell what is going on and you can easily overlook elements in the environment. The game doesn't give you an actual weapon until nearly 3 hours into it when you find your first guns. No ability to use melee? C'mon. The AI is annoying, the cutscenes are unskippable, the insanity factor comes into play way too easily and makes things blurry (things are hard enough to see in this game as it is), and the stealth doesn't really work at all. This is just a complete waste of time and utter disappointment. I tried very hard to enjoy this game but it just doesn't have what it takes to be called a good game. Other horror games over the years ranging from Silent Hill to Resident Evil Remake to Eternal Darkness to Dead Space 2 are all vastly superior in every way. Avoid this one, even if you are a Lovecraft fan like me. Expand
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 51 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 51
  2. Negative: 1 out of 51
  1. And while the devil is in the details, the game as a whole forms such a genuinely immersive and unique experience that to let it go unnoticed would be a disservice not only to Lovecraft but one extremely talented bunch of developers.
  2. 80
    While certainly not flawless, Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth is the perfect game for followers of Lovecraft's work, but the title also offers an intriguing and involving adventure for those who aren't and just want something a little different from a normal first-person game.
  3. Almost to its detriment, it doesn't play its hand early on; if anything, the game takes fully three or four hours before you really start to unravel its charms, and even then it never feels like a game in a hurry.