The Crow’s Eye
Gameplay 8
Graphics 7
Sound 8

The Crow’s Eye might not be a jump-scare laden horror title like it first appears to be, but instead offers a compelling and interesting puzzle experience. The story is a more involved than it seems and if you stick with it you’ll also find that there is more to the university than what you might think. There is no doubt that the puzzles sometimes feel a little out of place for the setting and time period of the game, but solving them is a very rewarding experience. Ultimately this game won’t give horror junkies the frights they crave, but if you enjoy a good story and love solving puzzles then you’ve come to the right place.

Gameplay: Light on the scares, but heavy on the puzzle solving and platforming.

Graphics: Nothing cutting edge, but sets the mood nicely.

Sound: Decent voice acting and a great soundtrack

Summary 7.7 Great
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

The Crow’s Eye

Developer: 3D2 Entertainment | Publisher: Nkidu Games Inc. | Release Date: 2017 | Genre: Adventure / Indie | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

When four students of the Medical University of Crowswood disappear under mysterious circumstances the authorities are called in to investigate. Unfortunately, instead of answers more people go missing, including policemen and faculty members. The university is promptly shut down and the case is considered closed. This all takes place in 1947, but nearly twenty years later a young man wakes up in the abandoned university only to find that he is now an unwilling participant in some twisted experiment. Although seemingly derelict, the university actually hides plenty of dark secrets, many of which you will uncover as you attempt to guide your unnamed character to freedom. However, escape is anything but easy with a mad scientist pulling the strings behind the curtains and an entire university full of puzzles and obstacles to navigate.

The Crow’s Eye is the debut title from a small indie team and they certainly aimed big. While at first glance it appears to be yet another creepy horror title, once you settle in to The Crow’s Eye you’ll find that its focus is actually on exploration and puzzle solving. Things certainly start out creepy enough and the abandoned university makes for a rather moody backdrop. However, apart from one or two jump-scares, the majority of your time is spent navigating tricky obstacles and solving the puzzles that lead you deeper into the bowels of the university. There are no creatures to battle, no monsters to hide from and no weapons to hoard. What this means is that you can get on with the job of finding out who you are, why you are being toyed with by an obviously mad scientist, and what you need to do to get the hell out of dodge.

The Crow’s Eye is viewed from a first person perspective and once you get over the initial anticipation of it being a horror title, the real influences become much clearer. The game definitely draws some inspiration from the Bioshock series for its visual design, while the Portal titles had an impact on the gameplay. The game runs on the Unity 5 engine, so while the overall design is quite good, the visuals aren’t quite up there with the big titles. Of course, this is not the work of a huge studio, but a small indie team, so we think they did a pretty good job considering their limited resources. While the game is not going to dazzle anyone expecting flawless graphics, it does provide a variety of interesting environments and a compelling setting.

The Bioshock influences are most obvious in the audio recordings that can be found scattered throughout the university. Listening to these will enable you to begin piecing together the fragments of the story as well as the people who plays a major role in it. Despite its state of disrepair, the university still has a working PA system, which is regularly abused by your nemesis to taunt you about your predicament. We would have preferred him to sound a little less like a comic book villain, but overall the standard of the voice acting in the game is rather good.

The lead character remains completely silent throughout, which makes all the PA announcements and radio conversations a little one-sided, but the game certainly doesn’t skimp on story. In fact, you’ll find numerous notes and letters as well that all shed more light on what really occurred within the halls of the facility. Sound effects are sparse, but well done, while the soundtrack is varied and very good. The soundtrack is actually available as a separate DLC purchase on Steam and with 33 tracks makes for some nice listening outside the game.

Initially you make your way through dark environments with nothing more than a flickering lighter to provide some illumination, but once you construct an electromagnetic device everything chances. Not only does it double as a flashlight, but also grants you abilities that would feel right at him in a Portal game. We don’t want to ruin any surprises, but suffice to say that with this device, it becomes a little more thrilling to navigate certain platform sections. Speaking of platforming, if you are not a fan of precision jumping in first person then this game is not going to win you over. While there might not be any enemies that can really harm you, slipping off a platform and tumbling into the darkness below can be fatal. This would explain why your character has a health bar, but the good news is that falling doesn’t necessarily mean you have to reload. Instead, you’ll lose some health and be deposited on the nearest bit of solid footing you touched before you had your spill. If you do run out of health then it’s back to the last save spot. Seeing as you can’t save at any time, but have to make use of dedicated spots that are spread around rather sparsely, this is something you’ll probably want to avoid.

Platforming jumping in first person does have its challenges, especially as you cannot see your feet in this game, but the odds aren’t completely stacked against you. In addition to your gravity defying gadget, you also have a crosshair to help you aim. You’ll soon also gain access to a recharging “adrenaline meter” that slows down time and increases your jumping distances when activated. These certainly help ease the pain a little, but unless you are really good there are probably a few sections you’ll end up having to repeat if you are not careful. The game also features quite a bit of backtracking, but this at least gives you the opportunity to find all the letters, notes and audio recordings. You’ll also want to keep an eye out for the crafting materials as well. These consist mostly of tape, cloth, ink, nails and other items used to craft bandages, maps and lockpicks. Strangely enough, the bandages are rather redundant as the only way to take any damage is from falling into voids. We are not exactly experts at first person platforming, but managed to complete the game with tons of bandages to spare. Likewise, you need to gather three items to create one lockpick, but the lock pick mini-game is only used three times in the entire adventure.

Overall The Crow’s Eye is quite an enjoyable game and quite impressive considering it is a debut release from a small indie team. We can’t deny however that the creepy setting sometimes feels very at odds with the puzzle based gameplay. Everything makes sense eventually, but horror fans will probably end up disappointed by the lack of scares while puzzle fans might be scared off by the seemingly creepy environments. The fact that first person platforming features so heavily in the game might also deter some players from trying it out. This would be a pity though as while the game might not be perfect it is quite captivating and it kept drawing us in deeper and deeper. Unless you absolutely cannot stand jumping around in first person we recommend giving The Crow’s Eye a shot. Just be sure to stick with it as you won’t experience everything it has to offer if you judge it too soon.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 7 or Higher (32-bit or higher)
  • Processor: Intel Core i3 or equivalent
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 or equivalent
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Storage: 3 GB available space
  • OS: Windows 7 or Higher (32-bit or higher)
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 or better
  • Memory: 6 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 or better
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Storage: 3 GB available space

Related posts

GAUGE

GAUGE

Gauge is extremely simple to play, but that is exactly why it is so addictive. Anyone can instantly learn how to play the game, but to achieve the big scores requires focus and concentration. This is easier said than done with the game actively trying to break your concentration and mess with your eyes. The psychedelic visuals can cause quite an eye strain so this is a game best played in short bursts, but overall it is a lot of fun. Gameplay: Very simple, but surprisingly addictive and challenging. Graphics: Extremely psychedelic and definitely not recommended for anyone with an epileptic condition Sound: The electronic music and sound effects fits the game perfectly.

Sneaky Sneaky

Sneaky Sneaky

It’s not the longest or most challenging of titles, but Sneaky Sneaky still manages to impress with its charming visuals and entertaining gameplay. Dashing from cover to cover while silently taking down foes or avoiding them altogether is a lot of fun and the lighthearted nature of the game makes it suitable for the whole family. If you need a break from the more challenging or stressful titles you can’t go wrong with Sneaky Sneaky. Gameplay: Not much of a challenging, but very entertaining. Graphics: Bold, colorful and charming. Sound: Some soothing melodies to back up all the sneaking.

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers 20th Anniversary Edition

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers 20th Anniversary Edition

Ask fans of the genre to name some of their favorite classic point & click adventure titles from the nineties and you can be sure that the name Gabriel Knight will crop up. Thanks to the dark and mature nature of the game it is perhaps not as well-known as the family friendly Lucasarts titles, but offered an experience that was memorable to say the least. From the voodoo steeped setting of New Orleans to the cast of memorable characters and enthralling storyline, Gabriel Knight was, no make that IS, a bona fide classic. Gameplay: A great version of a classic game. Graphics: Not perfect, especially the animations, but very good overall. Sound: The new voices take a while to get used to, but the soundtrack is superlative.

The Room Two

The Room Two

Like the original PC version of The Room, the sequel took a couple of years to make the transition over from iOS. Players impatient after the cliffhanger ending of the game had to turn to the iOS version for the sequel, and indeed third installment of the game, but those who held out for the PC version are in for a treat. Fireproof Games once again took the time to create an enhanced high definition version of the game instead of simply releasing a quick port. Gameplay: The larger playing areas make for more puzzle variety. Graphics: Once again vastly improved over the original mobile release. Sound: Creepy and unnerving, but very fitting.

Morph Girl

Morph Girl

Morph Girl combines nineties style FMV and Japanese horror in an interesting visual novel. The game deals with a woman who is mourning the death of her wife, so the story might be a bit too somber for anyone looking for a lighthearted visual novel. It is also rather short and the acting could have been better, but even with all its flaws Morph Girl still offers a unique and compelling experience. Gameplay: Passive for the most part, but there are some choices to be made. Graphics: Morph Girl makes use of FMV to convey its storyline. Sound: No voice acting and a haunting soundtrack keeps things interesting.

Post Apocalyptic Mayhem

Post Apocalyptic Mayhem

Post Apocalyptic Mayhem is pretty bare bones when compared to other racing titles on the market and it has somewhat of a low-budget feel to it, but provided you can get into a decent multi-player match there is lots of fun to be had. The free DLC released for the game has also since been integrated with the base game. Gameplay: Despite the floaty controls and lack of variety there is still fun to be had. Graphics: Nothing spectacular, but the visuals aren't too shabby. Sound: Pretty generic

Leave a comment

nine + sixteen =