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YMMV / Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth

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  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Mrs. Waite and why she killed Ramona. Did she really kill her because she had become a wild and ferocious beast, or was there an actual reason behind it? It's possible she read her husband Thomas's diary (which was in the attic with her) and discovered that Thomas was disgusted by their marriage and was considering giving their Half-Human Hybrid daughter a Mercy Kill before she became a full Deep One herself. Mrs. Waite could've then killed Ramona to either spite her husband, or as an attempt to make him happy by relieving him of having to kill their daughter himself.
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  • Anticlimax Boss: Mother Hydra. She has no way of actually attacking you, her only defense is a bunch of respawning Deep Ones, but they are absolutely no problem when the Yithian Lightning Gun can kill them in one hit and has infinite ammo.
  • Best Level Ever: One of the most praised levels in the game is the hotel escape, where you have to flee an entire town of cultists. You have no weapons, no allies, no mission... all you can do is run, bolting doors behind you while desperately trying to find a way out.
    • On the same token, the cutter level. To go into further detail: Jack has been fished out of the water by a Coast Guard Cutter (a ship operated by the coast guard that is at least over 65 feet long), when suddenly it comes under attack by the Deep Ones, who pour onto the deck and start killing everything. The crew arm themselves with Springfield rifles and Tommy guns, eventually fighting off the Deep One assault... then Father Dagon shows up. With almost everyone else on the ship dead, Jack singlehandedly takes down Dagon with the main gun by firing missiles into his face before Dagon manages to sink the boat. Unless you get the Game-Breaking Bug in which the ship doesn't get close enough to shore for you to target correctly, resulting in a game that can't progress until you get the fan-made patch.
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  • Breather Level: The surface of the Devil's Reef. The level is quite short, devoid of enemies, and miss sanity-damaging stuff.
  • "Common Knowledge": Everyone knows this game is an adaptation of The Shadow Over Innsmouth. Except it's not. It's actually an adaptation of the "Escape from Innsmouth" campaign from Call of Cthulhu. However, since the original story is much more famous and the campaign is now obscure due to being out of print, not many people realize this.
  • Complete Monster: Robert Marsh is the main mortal antagonist of the game. The heir of the Marsh family who sold Innsmouth out to the gods of the Deep Ones, Robert and his elder brother Sebastian rule over the Esoteric Order of Dagon. While Sebastian focuses on the business aspects, Robert is a religious fanatic who presides over a legacy of Human Sacrifice and fanaticism. When ordering Boston police detective Jack Walters killed in Innsmouth, Robert later uses his magic to help kill the marines who attempt to storm the Order before summoning Father Dagon himself to lead a horde of Deep Ones to a marine vessel that results in the deaths of everyone but Jack. When Y'ha-nthlei, the Deep Ones' city, is attacked, Sebastian furiously confronts Robert over having the Order in religious devotion in a time of crisis and attempts to shoot him, resulting in Robert magically murdering his brother. His ultimate goal is to have the Deep Ones overwhelm all of humanity, declaring the time of the human race is finished. Having nearly fully transitioned into a monstrous Deep One, Robert cares only for his bloodthirsty religion, with even the other citizens of Innsmouth fearing him.
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  • Continuity Lockout: Those unfamiliar with Lovecraft's work will probably find the reveal that Jack is part Yith and has the body-swapping ability to go with it somewhat confusing.
  • Disappointing Last Level: A pretty serious case too. It's quite clear that most of the game's development went into the first half of the game. The last two levels are particularly problematic.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Jack's ability to take over the body of a Deep One seems out-of-context at first, since up to that point his Psychic Powers only went as far as a few random visions. However, it makes a lot more sense when you realize that it's an inherited Yithian trait, the ability to swap bodies across space and time.
  • He's Just Hiding!: Some fans believe that Jack didn't really die at the end, and instead secretly swapped bodies with someone else, and is now carrying out his mission to dispose of the remaining Flying Polyps, using another person's body to accomplish this task.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Dark Corners of the Earth has you battle a Religion of Evil that plans to take over the world in the name of a deity named Dagon. Guess what happens in the next game that Bethesda released? There's even a side-quest in that game that's a direct homage to The Shadow Over Innsmouth, the story that Dark Corners is based on.
    • Four years after Dark Corners of the Earth's release, publisher Bethesda would acquire a company known for developing another Lovecraft-inspired First-Person Shooter.
    • The nightmares/hallucinations that Jack has about Arkham Asylum can be considered the larval form of The Evil Within, which Bethesda later published and also had psychological horror as a central theme.
  • Memetic Mutation: Thanks to 4Player Podcast, the guard in the general store has gained the Fan Nickname "Giant Spook Man".
  • Moment of Awesome: By the end of the game, Jack has done several awesome things within the week. Namely, he fought his way out of Innsmouth, killed a number of cultists, destroyed a shoggoth with factory machinery, blew up Dagon by blasting him in the face, vanquished the cult leader Robert Marsh armed only with a knife, took on two Flying Polyps on very unforgiving terrain, dismantled the Esoteric Order of Dagon and electrocuted Hydra. All without going completely insane. Until the ending, that is.
  • Narm: The slow motion effect that kicks in upon a Game Over also slows down dialogue. This is mainly noticeable on the rare Non-Standard Game Over where Jack is still alive to say something, like failing to save Hoover.
    Jack: Noooooooo, I'm toooooo laaaaaaaate.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Has its own page.
  • Porting Disaster: The speed of every character is decreased in the PC version compared to the Xbox version. It makes the game nearly unwinnable when the last level ends with a desperate run toward a gate while the ceiling is collapsing. The Steam version lacks this glitch, though the time limit is so tight it is hard to notice.
  • Spiritual Successor: Seems to owe much more to the original Quake than Quake II, Quake III: Arena, and Quake IV ever did. The only thing missing is a multiplayer mode.
  • Squick: Mother Hydra. She has scales, is grotesquely fat, has razor sharp teeth, and has four giant breasts. She's just... gross.
  • That One Boss: The pair of Flying Polyps. Though they don't do a lot of damage to you when the attack, the terrain they are on is narrow enough to fall off if you walk carelessly. Add in that their method of attacking involves pushing you our pulling you towards them with powerful winds makes this even harder.
    • In addition, you have to fully charge your Yithian weapon (which is the only thing that can hurt them) and fire at them. Oh, and they can teleport.
  • That One Level:
    • The Marsh Refinery. You do get plenty of ammo and weapons, but the game more than makes up for that generosity by making it easy to take a wrong turn and completely miss the key item you'll eventually need to progress, lengthy areas on catwalks and platforms where enemies can snipe at you from above and below, and even a couple of spots where the enemies will respawn, unlike most other areas in the game. Also, ever hear tale of a shoggoth?
    • The penultimate level in the Deep One's underground city is absolutely infuriating in just how annoying it is. Mostly because it has one of the most insane, long, and Guide Dang It! puzzles in the history of video games that requires a bunch of backtracking and searching.