“What’s Conarium?” We hear you ask. Well, have you heard the word of your lord and saviour, Cthulhu?
The Epic Games Store freebies are a bit of a sine wave. Some weeks, they’re up in the heavens. Others, they’re… well, they’re not. Two weeks ago, Epic was giving away Celeste and Inside – two of the finest indie video games ever made – for nothing. Then last week came the splendid underwater adventure, Abzu, and the quirky (if you can get over the body horror) The End is Nigh, from Binding of Isaac creator Edmund McMillen.
This week, it’s Conarium, from developer Zoetrope Interactive and publisher Iceberg Interactive. It’s nothing like the heights of Inside or Celeste, but an interesting curio for fans of Lovecraftian horror.
First released in 2017, Conarium is a puzzle game inspired by Lovecraft’s novella At the Mountains of Madness, but “largely set after the original story,” apparently. That’s probably for the best given that, from memory, the Antarctic research station is a veritable graveyard by the end of the novella.
In the story, protagonist and narrator, Dr William Dyer, is trying to persuade another research group not to make the journey to the station. Presumably, given the setting in Conarium, those pleas fell on deaf ears.
As for next week’s Epic Games Store freebie? We’re not sure yet. Usually Epic gives us a heads up a week in advance, but not this week. All we’re left with is some question marks, and a non-descript placeholder image that looks distinctly Arkham-shaped.
We wait with bated breath.