Euclidean

Game review by
Michael Lafferty, Common Sense Media
Euclidean Game Poster Image
Frustratingly hard, fortunately short descent into madness.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Focuses on survival through solving puzzles, but it has bleak messages throughout.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Players are themselves, frequently get a sense they're somewhere they're not supposed to be. Each decision seen as life or death, but nothing makes characters positive.

Ease of Play

Multiple difficulty settings, but there's no tutorial. Though movement is rather easy, not always easy to tell where danger might be. Permadeath means starting entire game over due to mistakes. Psychological elements not for younger players.

Violence

The screen splatters red with the message that "you" -- meaning the player's character -- has died, then fades to black.

Sex
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Euclidean is a downloadable, single-player survival horror game that's very hard to play, not only due to the level design but the fact that the game features permanent death. Essentially what that means is if the player's character dies, he or she has to start all over. The game features psychological elements that may be inappropriate for younger players. There's no definable scenes of violence, although the screen splatters red with the words "You have died" before fading to black.

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What's it about?

EUCLIDEAN is a descent into insanity, where geometric and abstract bits of visual art can kill you just by touching you. A voice taunts and twists the fabric of reality, stripping away reality and creating a journey that teeters on the precipice of madness. The game has no real overarching story line. Instead, it takes an arcade-like approach, then twists it around to come up with a survival-horror game that challenges a player to work through nine levels from start to end without dying. Death has a consequence: It can force you to restart from the beginning if you make a mistake.

Is it any good?

Heap on layers of increasing difficulty, and the reward is frustration. Euclidean refers to itself as "a game of geometric horror," and that it is. The visuals are kept dark -- for the most part -- and death can reach out in an instance and end the game. This is like a nightmare where you're slowly falling and can't do anything about it. You try to avoid things reaching out to kill you, but moving in the wrong direction can create even more trouble and make death inevitable. The three difficulty levels leave little room for mistakes. The graphics are serviceable and create a dream-like world that works in the context of the game but seems to work against the player simply because things are hard to see, let alone avoid. You can only see a little ways in front of you, so moving to avoid death is a reflexive element.

On the plus side, the price is only $3.99, and the audio portion does well to create the ambiance of horror the game embraces. Still, this is a rather short game, featuring only nine levels with no online component. Euclidean is a bold concept, but its difficulty, frustration, and concept mean it isn't a game for younger or impressionable players. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about making decisions that have profound effects and how to deal with the consequences of those decisions. How do these decisions affect everyday life? How do these choices affect the people around you?

  • Discuss what makes this game scary. How do you handle things you find frightening? Do you know how to make things less scary and address your fear?

  • Talk about the fascination with the supernatural. What's the appeal with horror movies, games, or books?

Game details

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