Carrion

Review Time! Another Steam sale review! Picture this: a strange alien planet, a group of scientists and military personnel, and a mysterious creature, with writhing, wriggling tentacles, gaping jaws with fangs and an insatiable hunger that devours and consumes everything in its path. Now what if I told you that you can’t fight this creature? Because the fact is, YOU are the creature! Carrion is, as the game advertises, a reverse Horror game, as you play the hideous monstrosity wrecking havoc on the pathetic humans of the base. This game is an unforgettable ride that, while short (only around 4-5 hours), packs a lot into its small box. The graphics, while simple, are able effectively convey the carnage that ensues and watching the creature devour helpless scientists and workers is satisfying in a grisly sort of way. The music nails the chilling tone and helps punctuate the creeping horror and pulse pounding action. As the creature grows and evolves, you gain a host of new abilities, which both allow you to solve puzzles more effectively and consume your prey faster. The puzzles themselves are excellently done as, while some are relatively straight forward, others need you to flex your mind in order to think of the solutions, often taking unconventional approaches to the situation that feel so satisfying on completion. Using the creature itself is also a blast, as you slink and slither your way around the map, and think of truly diabolical ways to ambush your prey. Whether it is pulling a grate out from under their feet, slamming open a door, or slithering your mind control tentacle to force the enemy to attack their own, you feel as if you are a nightmarish force to be reckoned with. But you are also surprisingly squishy, and many late game enemies (particularly the minigun walkers) can absolutely shred you if you aren’t careful. There are sometimes the odds seem a little too stacked against you, and a few late game abilities that are meant to help don’t seem to be as potent as they should. However, there is always a way, and overcoming these challenges has its own thrill. The game gives off a very Metroid feel, not just in progression, but also in the design of the world, and every time I spread my bio mass I couldn’t help but flash an evil smile. This game is a great package that I would recommend to anyone who loves exploration, puzzle solving and wanton violence, and I feel it is worth its $20 asking price (I got it for less, thank you, Steam sale). Spread your infestation, consume your prey, and let nothing stop you!

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