Generally favorable reviews - based on 57 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 57
  2. Negative: 1 out of 57
  1. Jul 23, 2020
    The name of the game is survival, and the goal is to escape containment and leave no prisoners. It's easy to cast victims aside in the chase for more power and expanding influence. The true horror of the mission in Carrion only sets in as the credits roll.
  2. Jul 30, 2020
    Every piece of Carrion is polished and near-flawless. From the amazing visuals, heart-pounding sound design, to the organic gameplay, everything in this game serves a unified purpose. In our current market oversaturated media, there is something invaluable in a game that doesn’t waste your time.
  3. Jul 24, 2020
    Carrion is a relatively short, positively memorable experience. Our odyssey as the monster attempting to flee from the mysterious installations shines with a formidable audiovisual design and fully original gameplay. It's cool to be the bad guy of the tale, sometimes.
  4. Jul 22, 2020
    Many factors make Carrion exceptionally fun to play, and hardly any that don't make it a gorily great way to spend eight hours. It's atmospheric in presentation and sound production, creating a complete package that feels like you're playing the origin story of a creature like The Thing.
  5. Jul 31, 2020
    Creepy, lusciously grotesque and most importantly, enjoyable, Carrion is one of the most refreshing games we've played in recent years and proves yet again that indie game development usually goes hand in hand with creativity.
  6. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion is a unique game and one that is refreshing and fun to play. The gameplay is smooth, and the arcadelike aspect of hastily crawling around eating scientists is both humorous and satisfying. While there are portions of it that I found confusing and slow, the core gameplay was enjoyable enough to where I didn’t mind the negatives. Carrion has a little bit of everything, and I would recommend it to anyone who is tired of being the protagonist in distress.
  7. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion reverses the roles of the horror genre beautifully, and playing as a monster has never been so disgustingly enjoyable.
  8. Jul 23, 2020
    Games can have messages, but they can also be a venue in which we act out our most twisted fantasies free of judgment and consequence.
  9. Aug 6, 2020
    Acting as a monster and hunting human beings are exciting. Carrion definitely worth trying if you are interested in the reverse-horror games.
  10. Jul 23, 2020
    Inspired by Carpenter and the 80s body horror, Carrion reverses the roles and puts us in the shoes of a formless and lethal creature, in a fluid, fast and extremely choreographic metroidvania. Some AI problems and a not always inspired artistic direction do not compromise the result of one of the surprises of this 2020.
  11. Aug 7, 2020
    Rampaging your way through Carrion as a tentacle monster makes playing this violent metroidvania feel unique, and the grotesque and harsh visuals greatly contribute to that feeling. But flaws like having no map and a lack of gameplay variety cannot be overlooked.
  12. Jul 28, 2020
    Carrion is simply a great time. The metroidvania gameplay loop is addictive, while its sound design and highly detailed pixel-art look makes it a joy to hear and look at. An average story and lack of an in-game map sap some of the enjoyment, but Carrion's ability to have you play as an unstoppable monster is gory grandeur.
  13. Jul 27, 2020
    Because there is so much to explore, so much back tracking to be done across multiple, confined locations, the player will have to travel across many, many rooms before significantly progressing. This experience breaks up, however small, what is otherwise a seamless experience of movement and momentum. And to a larger extent, these faults break up what is likewise a fantastic gameplay experience. If you ever wanted to play Alien: Isolation from the perspective of the creature, this is the game.
  14. 80
    CARRION mixes familiar and alien elements to produce a memorably brutal inversion of the horror genre.
  15. Jul 23, 2020
    If you love movies like The Thing and have enjoyed the games of Devolver Digital before then you should definitely give this a go. Carrion may not have the good looks of a Nathan Drake or a Lara Croft, but it has the kind of gooey, tentacle-y charm that you just can't find anywhere else.
  16. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion excels at creating realistic tentacle locomotion in the shape of a bloodthirsty nightmare. It falls behind when it requests precision from a monster only capable of blunt violence. As mad science grants sentience to raw brutality, articulation must be sacrificed for overwhelming power. It leaves Carrion as a mesmerizing concept overcommitted to its code.
  17. Jul 23, 2020
    Although Carrion is a relatively short game with little replayability, its quirky theme and ravenous flesh monster make for a fun feeding frenzy.
  18. Jul 23, 2020
    Yes, the game lacks readability when there are too many enemies. Yes, its level design sometimes loses the player. But Carrion is a successful game that takes being a monster to the extreme.
  19. Jul 23, 2020
    Easy to pick up and play, CARRION is original, absorbing and entertaining.It also has an excellent soundtrack – it’s cinematic horror vibe is the perfect accompaniment for the bloodbath that ensues.
  20. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion is a bloody, intricate experience with a consistency problem that breaks the momentum that's central to a game like Carrion.
  21. 80
    Carrion turns the horror genre on its head by letting you be the monster this time in a Metroidvania style game, which serves as the perfect type game to pick up and play between many of the other larger scale releases that have released this year.
  22. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion is the most wonderfully writhing Metroid-like game we've seen yet, one that's filled with blood and puzzles. The game could benefit from a map, but it's still a fun title in which you control a vengeful monster.
  23. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion is undoubtedly a unique take on the survival horror genre. There are a couple of misses, but for the most part it works well for those with a few hours to kill.
  24. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion is a lean but undeniably fun reverse horror with plenty of clever ideas that will have you second-guessing meatballs.
  25. Jul 22, 2020
    Carrion is a beautifully orchestrated symphony of blood, guts, and dismembered limbs.
  26. Jul 22, 2020
    Despite its flaws, Carrion is immensely enjoyable, though I would imagine its grotesque nature will turn some away. If you can stomach the gore, it’s well, well worth the play.
  27. Jul 22, 2020
    Carrion is a great pick for horror game fans, and will make players want more horror-themed Metroidvanias. It can be completed in just a few hours and it loses its momentum at the end, but it's a fun reverse-horror game experience while it lasts.
  28. 80
    Carrion is another hit from a publisher that has built its name on delivering to us unconventional and unexpected experiences. Devolver’s seal of approval is more than ever evidence of a classic as Carrion’s credentials as an incredible Metroidvania title as well as an inverse horror experience will never be in question.
  29. Jul 22, 2020
    Other than a few finicky control issues with grabbing the wrong object in a cluttered room or getting momentarily caught up in tight passages when playing as the beast's largest form, I had a breezy time. If you're looking for a cathartic pick-up-and-play game with little to no fat that you can slip in between this summer's massive story-driven titles, that's Carrion all the way. It's a devilish snack.
  30. Jul 27, 2020
    An anomalous metroidvania in the intent as traditional in the realization. The creature's alien and brutal beauty is only partially supported by an equally good world to explore. It remains a fascinating title, made with care, that really lacks that extra flicker to excel.
  31. Aug 20, 2020
    Carrion has a handful of annoying shortcomings, but it perfectly depicts everyday life of a scary alien creature from a horror movie, and that’s a monumental achievement by itself.
  32. CD-Action
    Oct 15, 2020
    The joy of watching this wild tangle of pixel art tentacles, organs, and flesh (and listening to the sounds of humans being devoured) alone makes this game worthwhile. If, just like me, you always root for the bad guy, Carrion’s gameplay can be immensely satisfying. [10/2020, p.54]
  33. Aug 10, 2020
    Carrion has its problems, especially in its level design and lack of a map for the player, but it succeeds in what it sets out to accomplish: creating a horror game, proper horror game, in which you are the monster.
  34. Aug 3, 2020
    Carrion is a fun one-and-done game and not much more than that. The concept of playing as the monster in the vents is a cool one, and Carrion executes the fantasy fairly masterfully. Unfortunately, it runs out of tricks before too long and is only saved from tedium by the short game length. It's worth a playthrough if you like the concept, but don't expect anything genre-defining. There's a lot of potential in the concept, and perhaps a Carrion 2 will give us something with more meat on its … amorphous horrifying frame.
  35. Aug 3, 2020
    Carrion is brilliant take on the metroidvania genre, a game where you control a creature that feasts on human bodies and grows as it develops new and deadly skills. It is another incredible and crazy Devolver Digital game.
  36. Jul 28, 2020
    In spite of being quite short, and having an over-complicated system to switch between powers, Carrion is a very good game that offers something different from the mainstay. We specially like the animations of the monster and the fact that we play as a huge beast.
  37. Jul 28, 2020
    Carrion perfectly achieves his purpose of making us feel like a powerful creature of unknown origin, wiping out the poor humans in our path.
  38. Jul 29, 2020
    Carrion is ultimately fascinating, engaging, and short and sweet. By putting you in the role of the alien threat it imbues you with a strange supervillain-like sense of playing in an insect farm. A playground where your prey often moves around sans limbs. If you’re a fan of sci-fi horror sub-genre then Carrion is worth seeking out.
  39. Jul 23, 2020
    With no real story to follow or info given on what the alien is or even what building it is trapped in, Carrion lives and dies by what happens in the moment. The focus on opening up new areas using the same ideas grows stale quick, and robs a fascinating premise of its true potential. I enjoyed playing as an enraged blob, but didn’t find much fun in the process of escaping the facility.
  40. Jul 30, 2020
    While I might disagree with the notion that Carrion is a truly great Metroidvania, a genre that has buckets of both older and modern classics, it is at very least a refreshing take on it. It controls like a dream with an analog stick, and there's a fluidity to the monster’s movements that I honestly feel like I will be searching for in other games for years. It just falls short of greatness, settling quickly into its comfort zone as a series of interconnected puzzles, and then failing to surprise me much after that.
  41. Aug 3, 2020
    Carrion is remarkably successful in so far that its visuals, sound design and interaction come together to create something truly horrifying, beautiful and engrossing, but its novelty wanes, and what you are left with is surprisingly superficial. It smoothly passes through your system the same way its goopy anti-protagonist passes through corridors, and if its sole intent was to let you play the monster in an otherwise familiar scenario, with little effort required to slither across the finish line, I am honestly unsure of what its lasting appeal was supposed to be.
  42. Jul 29, 2020
    Carrion sticks to its guns and nails the landing when it comes to its simple premise as a reverse horror game. It falls short on its lack of intuitive direction and inconsistencies with its puzzles. At times it can be tedious, but overall it is fun. If you need a smaller experience that has a unique perspective to the genre for an interesting experience then look no further to Phobia Game Studio's latest release.
  43. Jul 28, 2020
    Carrion is like a totally decompensated beat 'em up. Not because of its metroidvania-like level design, but because we advance destroying everything and everyone in this game. It is a power fantasy full of gore in which the protagonist can become a giant eater of men or a small and elusive mass. Simple and direct; the perfect entertainment for an afternoon.
  44. Jul 27, 2020
    Carrion nails the power fantasy of being a horror movie monster, but makes exploration a chore that pads the adventure.
  45. Jul 27, 2020
    Carrion has a refreshing — if consuming squirming helpless human lab rats can be called refreshing — and not often-enough explored premise but it’s not quite enough to elevate it to greatness.
  46. Jul 24, 2020
    When it's letting you live out its proposed reverse-horror fantasy, Carrion is at its best. It excels at making you feel empowered as an evolving lab experiment gone wrong, giving you ample opportunities to flex your death-dealing tentacles and tear enemies limb from limb. While giving you numerous tools to wreak havoc, it also uses them in smart ways to find a good balance between its gory combat and problem-solving. Carrion falters when it requires too much fine precision from you with a control scheme that doesn't allow for it, and is at its lowest when you're not playing as its headlining monster at all. These are disappointing distractions, but Carrion's main event is still a bloody great time.
  47. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion abounds with the thrills of being the monster, then, but, less common and more cosy, with the kick of being in a monster movie—of slithering in celebration over the tropes of the genre. The good news is that, for a while, it works.
  48. Jul 23, 2020
    Carrion is, for the most part, a bloody good game. It’s a real treat for horror fans and one of the most original games I’ve come across. There were so many moments that left me with a grin a mile wide, from pulling a string of victims up into the ceiling to turning a soldier against their former friends. But if you choose to wreak your own brand of horror upon Carrion‘s hapless humans, just be prepared to step away when there’s no-one left to torment.
  49. Jul 22, 2020
    Carrion is an entertaining and visceral experience, with a lot more going for it than simply running around and killing things, like many of the game’s trailers led me to believe...A few questionable design decisions make me hesitate on calling this an excellent title, though. Tying parts of the creature’s moveset to its current health level is frustrating. The lack of any kind of world map, while not game breaking in the slightest, got annoying while navigating the hub area. The repetitive art design in the levels isn’t doing the game any favors either...However, frustrations aside, Carrion was still an entertaining playthrough.
  50. Jul 22, 2020
    Despite the short length and minor replayability factor, Phobia Game’s debut is still a cleverly-concentrated experience. One that wastes little time on padding, even if it means its more repetitive segments are more visible to spot. It may not be firing on all cylinders, but Carrion‘s frantic, do-or-die action mixed with pleasant strides in its aesthetic make for an odd yet entertaining few hours.
  51. Aug 17, 2020
    All the blood and gore and screaming and gnashing of teeth turn into an aggravating set of puzzles. The chaos grinds to a halt, waiting for you to parse some this-then-that-next puzzle logic. Do you even know where to go next? This tunnel looks like every other tunnel. There’s nothing left to eat. The roiling protoplasm is restless and impatient. It’s tempted to grow a foot just so it can tap it peevishly, but that would be too cheeky. It’s beneath a shoggoth’s dignity. So it waits while you lead it around and try to figure out how to open that door. Such an amazing monster, trapped in such a middling game.
  52. Edge Magazine
    Aug 13, 2020
    As much as Carrion's moment-to-moment feel might benefit from the uniquely wobbly shape it gives you, the game as a whole wears its own amorphousness a little less elegantly. [Issue#349, p.98]
  53. Aug 3, 2020
    An impressive, creative, and inventive game on paper. In practice, it ends up being a rather middle-of-the-road experience, with unfulfilled promised of potential greatness. If you’re looking for an inventive new take on the Metroidvania genre, Carrion might be what you’re looking for –but don’t go into it expecting it to be Super Meat-troid.
  54. Jul 24, 2020
    Carrion is a great concept that becomes repetitive in practice. Taking control of a terrifying monster and mowing down a bunch of humans is fun at first, but it shows its hand far too quickly and gets stuck in a rut of giving the player the same tasks to perform over and over again. With simplistic movement and easy combat, Carrion is a straightforward Metroidvania game with few frills aside from its unique protagonist. With that being said, its climax does set it up for a sequel that could elaborate on what Phobia Game Studio has set up in its debut, so I’m still interested to see where this awful blob will go next.
  55. Jul 22, 2020
    Carrion starts strong with a solid premise but fails to fully capitalize on its ideas. The novelty of eating faceless humans wears thin as the sole motivation to escape isn’t expanded upon in any meaningful way. The environments fail to encourage rewarding exploration while the puzzles and combat encounters quickly become routine. It's hard to write Carrion off entirely because the novel concept has its charm, but without more depth and variety, it’s easy to lose your appetite for consuming flesh.
  56. Sep 12, 2020
    Carrion has all the potential to become really interesting, but right now it feels like a technical demonstration of an incomplete concept.
  57. Jul 22, 2020
    There just isn’t a reason to play Carrion. There is little narrative, repetitive combat, limited puzzles, and almost zero horror elements. The atmosphere is okay and it reminds me of Alien but that’s about as far as it goes with horror. Just leave this monster stuck in the vent.
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  1. Jul 23, 2020
    Honestly, if you've ever wanted to fake like a xenomorph in a video game, Carrion offers a better facsimile than any officially licensed Alien game. [Ars Technica Approved]
  2. Jul 23, 2020
    A squirming body horror labyrinth whose mix of ability-gating and backtracking slightly cramps its matchless creature design. [Eurogamer Recommended]
  3. Jul 23, 2020
    Most importantly, Carrion’s smart. It’s an extremely finely crafted game, so much so that you’re essentially playing a meat-smeared Metroidvania without a map, and you won’t even miss it. That’s quite something. Add in the excellent puzzles, ever-growing cast of enemies, and constant sense of progress, and Carrion is much more than just the gore. But ho boy, the gore.
  4. Jul 24, 2020
    In the end, I found Carrion to be an enormously frustrating experience. The pieces are there for an amazing game. I had some incredible moments while playing, and would even go as far as recommending this as a worthwhile use of a more patient player's time, despite the issues.
  5. Jul 23, 2020
    Other recent games have tried to show the world through the eyes of someone you thought was an enemy, making the point that what we consider monstrous is extremely relative. The difference is that Carrion dives into this idea with all its power and weight, finding joy in a theme that might have been maudlin in different hands. I exist only to destroy, and escape, and I have done both. [Polygon Recommends]
  6. The result, for me, was anxiety. A low background hum of “did I miss something”, combined with the high notes of being unable to find the next new area. It was enough to shade my entire experience with Carrion, turning a pleasant enough Metroidvania with a one-of-a-kind protagonist into something I felt like I was struggling to escape from. Your mileage may vary. But for me, I was happier with the GIFs.
  7. Jul 27, 2020
    Anger, like the biomass of Carrion, can only be steered. It can’t be controlled. Carrion lets me hold on to my anger and gives me the illusion of control of it. The dual sense of becoming that which is feared and riding rage make it the perfect game for the moment.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 275 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 12 out of 275
  1. Jul 26, 2020
    Carrion : For a game put straight into game pass I was worried it would be boring or poor. But this game instantly became a favorite. The goreCarrion : For a game put straight into game pass I was worried it would be boring or poor. But this game instantly became a favorite. The gore and carnage you are able to unleash captivated me quickly plus the puzzle like atmosphere helped entice me further. The movement is relatively fluid and the aim and attack isnt what I hoped for per say but still didnt take away from the game itself. Now it is a great game but does have a few drawbacks. For instance there are certain secrets you can unlock that let you play as a human and unlock the past to find out what started this. But it kinda was a bore compared to the fast pace nature of the game. So I do wish they would have left this out but it was alright. The game isnt relatively long I was able to complete it within about 2 hrs but it was a fun time the whole way and I didn’t want to set it down the entire time. It was challenging dont get me wrong, i zoned in thats why I was able to get it done in one sitting. All in all for price and being free atm on game pass I super recommend this game for those with Gamepass on Xbox One. Full Review »
  2. Jul 27, 2020
    In regards to gameplay depth and variety, Carrion is far more simplistic and shallow than I was hoping for.

    There's a lot of aimless
    In regards to gameplay depth and variety, Carrion is far more simplistic and shallow than I was hoping for.

    There's a lot of aimless wandering around due to the lack of any sort of map system. I understand that you're this grotesque creature that shouldn't necessarily be holding a paper map in it's meaty folds, but to me this is a missed opportunity to come up with a really innovative way to display some sort of map system based off of "marking your territory" with creature ooze or slime and being able to pick up your own scent or pheromones...essentially creating the map as you go.

    You're going to be fighting the same human and robot enemies time and time again. The same goes for the puzzles. Gain some creature mass to use an ability, drop some creature mass to use another. Pull a lever, chomp on human snacks, sneak around [or don't]. Rinse, wash, repeat.

    I like the horror theme, and the fluid control that can come with blasting through areas after they've been cleared out, but that's usually because you're trying to figure out where the heck you need to go and just want to move on. If there were perhaps some intense moments that required speed and fancy foot work to navigate through a labyrinth with flames, acid, or some other hazard, maybe that could have broken up the monotony and added to the tension. However, most of the tension comes from facing elite troops with flamethrowers or sentry robots with machine guns.

    There's also a really cool animated trailer, but it doesn't appear to be in the game - another missed opportunity to round out the game and provide the user with a little more meaty goodness.

    I can only recommend this if you're a fan of gore and horror films like John Carpenter's The Thing, Deep Rising, Alien, etc.

    EDIT: Went back to play a few more hours - thinking I might have overlooked some really cool key component, but unfortunately not. It was just more of the same. :(
    Full Review »
  3. Sep 6, 2020
    Good vibe, physics, sounds and music, but after a while the game became more of a maze with no storyline.