‘Narcosis’ – Swimming with the fishies

Narcosis – Overview

Narcosis manages to do what lots of games can’t, and that is make underwater segments fun. Many games, when they throw you underwater, it just isn’t fun. Most notably, for me, World of Warcraft. Vashj’ir was a terrible, terrible zone, the worst one in the game. But I digress.

Walking around the disturbing, dark and scary depths in Narcosis is fun. For the most part, you could argue the game is a walking simulator, as you’re slowly making your way from location to location, collecting items and figuring out a story, only with the occasional bout of combat against a couple of fish.


As you explore your surroundings, you’ll notice that the game looks terrific. Everything is appropriately creepy, disturbing, sad, occasionally happy. The outdoor environments look better than the indoor ones, from the crags to the mountains to the lava fields, of all things.

Sound design is superb, and really immerses you in the whole thing, and I recommend headphones for the best experience. You can hear your footsteps thump heavily, water moving as fish swim past, just overall very good design.

But like all games, Narcosis has its issues. There are a couple of platforming segments that, while not all of them long, are a chore. I don’t know if that’s because of design or just the restricted view and odd movement of your suit, but they are not fun at all. One of the them goes on slightly longer than it needs to.

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In addition, it relies on some tropes, more than once, that we’re all used to by now. This includes the activating something, which causes the music to stop, you then turn around and boo, something’s there. Or you walk through a looped hallway that never ends until you realize right, I’ve done this before, I should turn around and go backwards.

Pros

  • Excellent graphics
  • Superb sound and music
  • Voice acting is great
  • Lots to collect and learn about what happened

Cons

  • Occasional frustrating moments
  • Many cliched horror elements

Summary

Overall, Narcosis is well worth your money and time. It’s a haunting, creepy, occasionally frustrating journey that should be experienced.

And while I won’t spoil anything, the ending? I definitely did not see the twist they throw at you.

Recommend/Not Recommend: Recommended

Read more of my reviews here, or head on over to Steam to check them out.