Here at GD Towers, we’re big fans of Daedalic Entertainment’s madcap and surrealistic point n’ click adventures such as Deponia and Edna & Harvey. Along with Wadjet Eye Games (Primordia), Daedalic creates some of the most memorable and wildly entertaining adventures of modern times, and its latest effort Memoria is another instant classic despite its very different tone and themes.
Memoria tells the tale of Geron, your average schlub who finds his beau Nuri mysteriously transmogrified into a raven via malevolent means. Geron’s quest to restore his love kicks off an epic story spanning centuries, with players also taking control of a rather spunky princess called Sadja who lived hundreds of years earlier.
Memoria’s story is masterfully told, throwing players straight into the action and gradually revealing plot pieces when the time is right. We were hooked right from the fifteen-minute mark, as you guide Sadja through a mysterious cavern in search of a source of incredible power. What she actually finds is a glib and giddy god who’s somehow got himself trapped inside a staff. Don’t worry, it all (eventually) makes perfect sense…
The fantasy setting suits the game perfectly, with plenty of dark moments to elevate it above mere kiddie fare. People are crushed and skewered and generally treat with great disdain by Daedalic - if we were characters in one of their games, we’d probably be cowering under our duvet and wetting ourselves at the slightest sound. The violence isn’t particularly graphic, however, so parents shouldn’t worry too much if little Johnny or Jane fancies a game.
While some of Daedalic’s previous titles (Deponia in particular) contained a bevy of surreal and difficult head-scratchers, Memoria’s puzzles are on the whole quite straightforward to solve. This doesn’t mean that they’re any less satisfying, however. Some particularly clever puzzles, such as bringing defeated golems back to life to escape a seemingly inescapable tomb, will have you grinning when you conquer them and also stick in the mind for some time after. The use of magic also adds a unique spin to keep things interesting, with new abilities opening up as the game unfolds.
Memoria: Graphics and Sound
Once again, Daedalic has done a masterful job with its visuals. Memoria features beautiful hand-drawn animation which really brings the environments and characters to life, and is a firm and much-needed middle finger at the plasticky 3D graphics that many modern adventure games sport. Lip-syncing isn’t quite there however, and while the voice acting is generally fine, there are some more quirky performances that feel a little out of place, alongside some rather bored-sounding delivery in areas.
Still, the characters themselves are a fun and varied bunch, even if they aren’t quite as stand-out memorable as the likes of Edna and Harvey. Geron is a fairly standard unwilling hero, who would definitely benefit from a personality overhaul - even the odd wisecrack here and there would help. Frankly, he’s soggier than a ten-year-old snot rag. Thankfully Daedalic makes up for him with the brave and slightly unhinged Princess Sadja and her talking god staff, as well as some of the more colourful supporting cast.
Memoria: The Verdict
Memoria is a grand adventure that absolutely nails the most important aspect of any point n’ clicker: an involving and gripping story. The gentle level of challenge keeps the pace constant, while still proving involving enough to interest even full-time adventurers, and we love the beautiful hand-drawn graphics. Only a slightly limp main protagonist and some iffy voice acting keeps Memoria from perfection.