The Dark Eye: Memoria – Review
Follow Genre: Point-and-click adventure game
Developer: Daedalic Entertainment
Publisher: Daedalic Entertainment
Platform: Switch, PC
Tested on: Switch

The Dark Eye: Memoria – Review

Site Score
8.4
Good: Two distinct stories tied together in an engaging manner
Bad: Animations are awkward
User Score
10.0
(1 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)

Once again, we’re headed to the universe of The Dark Eye, with Daedalic Entertainment’s latest arrival on the Switch: Memoria. We recently took a look at Daedalic’s previous Dark Eye title, Chains of Satinav, and while we enjoyed the adventures of protagonist Geron, we did feel there was some room for improvement. Is Memoria a worthy successor or should Geron’s journey have ended with the previous title?

Story

Memoria is a direct sequel to the other Dark Eye title that recently arrived on the Switch, Chains of Satinav. Once again, we join bird catcher Geron, who is now recognized as a hero due to the events from the previous game. This time Geron is joined up with a new character, the southern princess Sadja. Both of these protagonists have their own distinct storyline and goals, with Geron looking for a way to lift a curse from his girlfriend, whereas Sadja’s ultimate aim is to become the greatest hero in history. Unbeknownst to either of them, their stories are far more interwoven than you’d expect at first glance, however.

Just like Chains of Satinav, Memoria is very much a story-driven experience, and as such we can’t delve too much into the details of the narrative without spoiling things. One thing we feel we need to point out is that you’ll enjoy Memoria far more if you play Chains of Satinav first. You’ll be able to follow the events in Memoria without being familiar with its predecessor, but there are a lot of references to Geron’s earlier exploits. His arc really has a much bigger impact if you’re aware of what he has been through as a character before the events presented here.

Graphics

Visually, Memoria is almost indistinguishable from Chains of Satinav. Geron’s parts of the story make use of the same assets as the first game wherever possible. We appreciate the continuity, and we were fans of the art style of the first game, so we are happy to report that the illustrations in Memoria are still gorgeous to look at. The more varied and colorful environments that Sadja explores are preferable over Geron’s more limited dwellings, but either story setting features amazing illustrations. Unfortunately, Memoria also suffers from the same stilted animations that dragged Chains of Satinav’s visual experience down a bit, but that’s the only real downside when it comes to the visuals.

Sound

Memoria uses its soundscape to its fullest and features an appropriate fantasy-styled soundtrack and an above average soundscape. The game is of course fully voice acted, and though not every performance has the same level of acting quality, we still enjoyed the deliveries for most characters. We recommend playing this one with headphones for the best audio experience, as we found that certain parts of the game were more immersive in this manner.

Gameplay

Developer Daedalic Entertainment’s reputation for delivering fantastic point-and-click adventures has been well-earned throughout the years, and Memoria fits the bill. While we can’t ignore that the game is virtually identical to Chains of Satinav when it comes to the core gameplay, Memoria puts a minor twist on things to shake things up. This twist comes in the form of the introduction of Sadja as a second protagonist. Rather than sticking with just Geron, like in the previous title, here you alternate between the two characters instead. From a narrative standpoint, there is a time difference of 5 centuries between Sadja and Geron, so it’s interesting how the viewpoint changes over the course of Memoria’s eight chapters, especially as their actions influence the flow of the story for both. The connection between the narratives lies in the character of the mysterious merchant Fahi, whose dreams act as the glue that combines both stories. This provides a clever and engaging way to bring everything together and it allows for some really creative puzzle designs.

Compared to Chains of Satinav, Daedalic Entertainment really kicked things up a notch when it comes to puzzle design. The puzzles presented here are more engaging and cleverly designed compared to the previous title in the series and they make for a more interesting experience. Geron’s telekinetic abilities come into play here of course, but Sadja is a force to be reckoned with as well. Her main claim to fame is the ability to send visions to other characters, allowing her to manipulate them into doing her bidding. Their abilities are used in clever ways and allow for satisfying puzzles that never feel frustrating. Inventory management and control accuracy have also been kicked up a notch compared to Chains of Satinav. While we welcome the improvements, it’s a bit baffling that these changes weren’t implemented in the other port in the first place.

Conclusion

Memoria takes everything Chains of Satinav did right, and improves on it. Puzzles are more enjoyable, the scope of the story is much bigger -especially Sadja’s part of it- and the game’s weaving of two distinct stories works surprisingly well. However, we wouldn’t recommend playing Memoria as a standalone title, simply because you’ll get more enjoyment out of Geron’s story after you’ve completed Chains of Satinav. However, Memoria is a huge step up compared to its predecessor, so if you’ve enjoyed the previous game, we highly recommend picking up Memoria as well.

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Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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The Dark Eye: Memoria - Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating
SebastiaanRaats


1 Comment

  1. […] games on the Switch, it’s hard to avoid Daedalic Entertainment. Whether it’s mature titles like Memoria or the satire of the fantastic Deponia series, the German publisher has got such a wide range of […]

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