Eleusis is a 3d first-person adventure game for Windows developed by Nocturnal Works using the technology of the unreal engine. It takes place in a seemingly abandoned village in Greece where the player character, while trying to seek refuge, finds himself in the center of a whirlwind of mysterious events.
User reviews:
Mixed (148 reviews) - 50% of the 148 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Oct 16, 2013

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About This Game

Eleusis is a 3d first-person adventure game for Windows developed by Nocturnal Works using the technology of the unreal engine. It takes place in a seemingly abandoned village in Greece where the player character, while trying to seek refuge, finds himself in the center of a whirlwind of mysterious events.As the plot unfolds he finds clues that indicate that the village is a nest of a cult which plans to revive a dark force through an ancient ritual and harness its power. The player character faces the challenge of unlocking the forgotten knowledge of the ancient mysteries in order to stop the cult from accomplishing their goal.

It is a story-driven game with emphasis on exploration, information gathering and also includes horror-survival elements. The player is called to solve inventory item based puzzles in order to proceed to unlock new areas and solve the mystery. The game’s puzzles are made to challenge the player and are based on actual history, mythology and technology of ancient Greece. The player also needs to be cautious and use stealth tactics and agility to survive the threats looming the area.

Key Features:

  • High detailed realistic graphics.
  • Explore open environment with realistic physics in the Greek countryside.
  • Use stealth tactics and agility to survive.
  • Use physics-based objects to defend yourself.
  • Challenging item–based Puzzles with simple interface.
  • Dark atmosphere with eerie sounds.
  • Original storyline

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7
    • Processor: Intel Core2 Duo, AMD Athlon64 x2, or better
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVidiaGeforce 9600GT, ATI Radeon 4670HD or equivalent
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX compatible sound card
    • OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7
    • Processor: Intel Core i5/i7, AMD equivalent or better
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 280, ATI Radeon 4870 or better
    • DirectX: Version 9.0
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX compatible sound card
Helpful customer reviews
20 of 23 people (87%) found this review helpful
3.8 hrs on record
Posted: April 15
An abandoned village in Greece where mysterious events happen. Lets stay there for a night, shall we?
Hint: At the end of this review you will find a TL;DR and a video section.


●▬▬▬▬▬[➤ REVIEW]▬▬▬▬●

Eleusis was developed and published by Nocturnal Works in October 2013. It is a puzzle based 3D adventure indie game for Windows and runs on the Unreal Engine.

The story twirls around a nameless protagonist who got a letter from his mother, living in a village called "Eleusis" -the eponym for the game- in Greece. She wishes to speak to him in person to talk about his father and so the character sets out for visiting his mother by car. On the long way at the road a huge stone rolls down the scarp, crashing into the vehicle and then... nothing but darkness. After a while the character comes back to his senses and has unfortunately to realise that his car is demolished and that he has to continue his way afoot. Arriving at his destination through a near shortcut, the protagonist seems to be all by himself, not a single living soul to be seen, not even his mother. But things never turn out the way somebody would expect and so the character finds himself in the middle of a long forgotten cult, which wants to summon something more sinister than earth could imagine.
This village exists also in reallife near Athen, now called Elefsina and is known for the Mysteries of Eleusis, one of the many cults in the greek religion. Eleusis makes use of this fact and also implements parts of the actual mythology in its story.

The gameplay mechanics are similar to games like Amnesia or Penumbra. The player has to discover everything in order to find more clues about what could have happen in the village. While doing so, there are also puzzles to solve. Either through finding keys or combining items. This is not possible in the inventory itself unfortunately, but if the player equips for example a shovel, he can use it on piles of dirt around the map. This works with every other item in the inventory. A lantern and flashlight will light the way in the darkness, but only the flashlight needs resources in form of batteries.
Threats such as wolfes and priests, are lurking around the corner, ready to kill the protagonist. Stones and other objects are most of the time physic-based and can be thrown at the creatures to keep them at distance, while finding a place to hide. Stealth tactics are mentioned but not particularly needed. Running away and hiding in one of the houses is mostly the solution to the problem behind the back, especially when wolfes chase the player. Mentionable is the option to turn off enemies in the options, which simplifies the games but bores it likewise, So it is recommended to keep it on for the own enjoyment and to experience the full atmosphere of Eleusis.
To keep track of what the player is doing, Eleusis offers a journal and later on a map. Mostly everything found on the journey will be written down in the book, including important things which can be read in other books and letters. However, sometimes it is not clear what could be the possible next step and is the reason for most of the negative reviews. It is absolutely necessary to be focused all the time and also to keep an eye and ear open for more hints. Yet, Eleusis promotes itself as a challenge and at some point it will be proved right. The idea to emphasis the player on exploration and information gathering is not new and always welcome in games of this genre, but letting the player stumble in the dark for too long without any hints can destroy the fun and take away the patience to search any further for unknown information and ways.

Graphicwise Eleusis cuts out a fine figure and starts out to be very atmospheric. Everything on the map is very detailed and pleasant to look at, as expected from the Unreal Engine. Ambient lighting from both, flashlight and lantern, contribute their own feature to the atmosphere. The flashlight has a smaller area it can illuminate, but adds some more fear factor while the lantern gives a cozy feeling through the huge area it warmly illuminates. Nothing incredible stunning and also nothing that gamers have not seen but still, the stifling atmosphere and greatly designed surrounding speaks for itself and has the possiblity to mesmerize the player.

Eleusis maintains a low profile in terms of sound, which is not particularly bad. Footsteps of the character follows wherever he goes, sound of cicades, some creaking here, a windblow there but overall it underlines the dead atmosphere of the village. Threats like the wolfes growl, but the stalking and chasing priests are more or less silent, what throws a potential fear factor just over board. Yet, the voice acting in cutscenes is greatly done. Why Nocturnal Works did not took this completely over into the actual gameplay remains a mysterie. Overall, the sound does its job and it is surely nothing to sneeze at.

The controls remind a lot of similar adventure games like Amnesia or Layer of Fear. By holding the left mouse button on certain objects or doors the character grabs it, moving the mouse forward or backward opens and closes doors /drawers/chests and when holding an item and pressing the right mouse button the protagonist throws the object away. It is fun to mess around with objects and also necessary to throw for example stones or bottles at threats to keep them at distance.

To cut a long story short; Eleusis will not always hold the hand of the player and can get tricky at some point, but overall the gameplay mechanics, great atmosphere and mythology based story compensates this problem. For everyone, who is still unsure if he will enjoy this game can also wait for a sale or a bundle deal.


●▬▬▬▬▬[➤ RÉSUMÉ]▬▬▬▬●

As a lover of this genre I can not recommend this game enough. Sure, it is short and tricky as already mentioned in the review, but the atmosphere alone was worth for me to beat the hell out of this game. In the end, I finished Eleusis in around 3.5 hours and was overall happy with both endings. Sadly, it has no replay value but maybe I will come back to it to replay it in the future, just to enjoy the story again.

For fans of games like Amnesia, Penumbra or Layer of Fear absolutely worth the purchase!

●▬▬▬▬▬[➤ TL;DR]▬▬▬▬●

[✔] Storyline based on reallife facts/greece mythology
[✔] Phsyic based objects to use against enemies
[✔] Very detailed graphics and stifling atmosphere
[✔] Threads can be turned off in the option menu

[✖] Only two kind of threats (wolf and priests)
[✖] Puzzles itself too easy
[✖] Hard to find the next objective, when journal is not updated

●▬▬▬▬▬[➤ MEDIA]▬▬▬▬▬●



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224 of 260 people (86%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 8, 2013
Do you remember that feeling you had as you cowered in the closet, hiding from the monstrosities in Amnesia? Or when you tiptoed along a dimly lit hallway, hoping the monster ahead wouldn't see you in Outlast? You won't be able to find anything of the sort here. Eleusis attempts to emulate the successful horror formula of its' predecessors, but falls flat on its' face. The game manages to take the most annoying tropes of the adventure and horror genres and mash them together to create this mess of a game.

When I say "adventure", I use the term very loosely. The puzzles themselves are few and far between, sandwiched between hours upon hours of endless backtracking between different points in the village. You find a key in a drawer? Better check every single door on the map, because you have no clue which building is what. Oh, you have to collect the ingredients to make a mysterious potion? They are located at points A, B, C and D, at different corners of the map. Have fun walking around at an excruciatingly slow pace. The next stage then makes you visit all of the areas all over again. Even with the additional, and completely unnecessary, padding, I only managed to squeeze about 4 hours of playtime out of the game (Steam says 2 hours, but I first played on Desura).

Of course, backtracking in itself does not destroy a game. I've certainly played other titles that were overly reliant on this concept (Dreamfall, anyone?), but most manage to make up the shortcomings with an excellent storyline or logical and engaging puzzles. Eleusis isn't able to cover either category well. The storyline is nothing special - some mysterious cult trying to raise an evil god - and the twists and turns can be seen from a mile away. The puzzles are drab and uninspiring. Most of them involve searching for keys and the doors they go to. Those scavenger hunts aren't entirely too bad, but there are far too many logical shortcoming throughout. Near the start of the game, the protagonist picks up a wood axe. You'd think the axe would be able to chop through all of the locked wooden doors, wouldn't you? Nope, it's only used for shimmying a hose off a faucet. Eventually, the main character creates a pair of lockpicks, using on the simple tools at hand. The problem? You guessed it. The lockpicks only work on a single door in the entire game. The game is also plagued with knee-high gates, but, being locked, somehow create a infinitely tall boundaries that magically prevents the protagonist from even thinking about walking over.

I have to admit that not everything about Eleusis is terrible. The overall lighting, with the exception of the overly reflective rocks in several areas (thanks to the UDK engine), is certainly reminiscent of other survival horror games. The spooky ambient noises are fitting and the great graphics in general work well to establish a creepy atmosphere. Unfortunately, those two points are essentially the only highlights to this dull and predictable adventure,

I agree with one of the other reviewers here. This game just feels like some kind of tech demo or portfolio project. It just doesn't feel like the developer made an honest effort to create a full fledged game. As such, I would advise to stay far, far away from this game.
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122 of 145 people (84%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
6.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 21, 2013
I was really excited to play this game, long time ago I read about the Eleusinian Mysteries, and seeing this is based on that, it peaked my interest.

Once I started the game, I thought 'wow, this actually looks good, compared to other games in this genre'. And it does, the graphics are really nice and detailed. Same goes for the sound and music, there's not too much distracting music playing, on the few occasions it does, it is very fitting. Other than that you hear your footsteps and the enviroment around you, i.e. water, etc., big plus on atmosphere.
However, once I advanced a bit in Chapter one, I started to get annoyed. The fov is horrible. Paths are barely visible, even with a flashlight.
After solving my first puzzle, I thought it can't get much worse. Wrong. Throughout the game there's no innovative new puzzles, it's always the same. The most annoying part is the running around back and forth (yes, through the whole map) you HAVE to do. It gets really, really frustrating after a while. Imagine finding a key and having to try pretty much every single door to find the lock it fits in.

When I started I checked the NPC thread option, the first time something pops up, sure it was a bit freaky, but that's it. After that the ecounters became predictable and annoying. Now comes one of the worst things about Eleusis: no manual saves, so enjoy running back and forth again if you go game over.

The game lenght is decent, it takes about four hours to finish it. Without the useless backtracking you could easily complete it in less than half of that time. So keep that in mind. There's nothing exciting about 'exploring', in Eleusis it feels like your wife or mother telling you to take out the trash a hundred times a day.

So, in the end the story didn't intrigue me in the way I was expecting. Eleusis was predictable, boring and very, very annoying. I am glad I didn't buy this full price, and neither should you.
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58 of 72 people (81%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
4.5 hrs on record
Posted: August 22, 2014
I hate walking.

No I don't mean that in the lazy, "I'd rather sit on my bum and play video games all day" sort of way, but the act of slowly moving your legs instead of opting to run when the situation demands it. So it would stand to reason that I sort of hate Eleusis, a game that consists of 80% mundanely walking at the speed of a crippled elderly person to various points on your map, with the rest being filled in with so many terrible design decisions that I struggled to remember them all.

Eleusis opens with your character being summoned by his mother to visit his hometown. On the way there his car is struck by a cascading boulder, and he has no choice but to leave his vehicle and explore the area around him, which soon leads him to a creepy abandoned village, where everything is miles apart and key objects scattered around in the most convoluted of places.

And this is where you come in, being the newly appointed hidden object finder, tasked with searching what remains of the village to find various tools and keys and use them to make your way past so many locked doors in order to find more doodads and unlock more doors. It's essentially an adventure game, but the puzzles are so obtuse and confusing that it feels like little more than one tedious fetch quest. Only minutes into the game I was already reaching for a guide, as absolutely nothing is done to direct the player, and progression often depends on clicking on the one item out of a dozen that is usable as opposed to needlessly moved around (which even then is restricted to certain items, making it an even more baffling inclusion that is never used for anything meaningful). And of course, all of this sends you walking back and forth across the map, often requiring repeat trips and trial and error as so little is labeled meaningfully, and getting lost is incredibly easy with how little you can see and how tangled the maze of trails becomes.

This might not be nearly as dull as it is though if Eleusis's world wasn't at least three times larger than it needs to be and filled so sparingly with anything consequential. The size of the map might also be connected to the horrendous performance I received on a PC that is more than capable of running the game, which graphically consists of little more than bland textures, pop-in prone foliage, and embarrassing particle effects. There are moments when the darkness almost makes everything look decent, but it's merely an illusion quickly discarded when a light is passed over whatever you may be viewing.

I don't feel the need to delve much into the narrative, as it's so sparse and comprised of so many disconnected strands that you'd almost forget it was there, if not for the requirement to read through long passages of text in find the clue not so subtlety hidden among the rambles. Your character's motivations are never explained, the plot is paper thin, and the ending notable only for the reprieve it gives you from such a horrendous experience.

If you are expecting a horror game, clever puzzles, a decent narrative, or even just some decent eye candy, you will find none of it here. Eleusis is a failure of a game that I can only recommend as an example for aspiring developers at how badly you can screw up a first person adventure game. For everyone else, be glad you have yet to take part in this experience, and for those who already have you have my sympathy.
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66 of 85 people (78%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 16, 2014
The most boring game ever.

Everything is slow and there is no excitement to anything. Make sure to turn "NPC Threats" off, because the only enemies are wolves that spawn when you pick up key items, and walking away from these wolves is pretty much the game forcing you to backtrack in order to despawn them which makes them just a waste of time. The setting is really dull too and moving around in it is clunky due to the bad controls. The worst part about the game is the gameplay itself, which is nothing but walking around in a large but empty world at a very slow pace. This makes finding items for puzzles and then bringing them to where you think they would work a major pain.

About the puzzles: They are garbage. The game's progression is tied to you picking up one specific item after another, you pick an item up just to use it on the next item which will then let you do something to get another item. Missed an item? Better search everywhere while moving like a snail. Most of your time will be spent walking around an empty area clicking on everything to find that one item you need. Also, good luck finding the matches. Putting them inside a 80% opacity glass case on top of a grave was not the best idea.

By the way, the game is not scary.

EDIT: I read the Steam Store page for this game and got angry, so I'm gonna pick apart each point.

--High detailed realistic graphics.
Not really. The village itself is very boring and weird-looking (many of the houses are one room for some reason), and the forest area is plagued by bad pop-in problems with shadows. The same 3 moveable rocks are repeated throughout the whole game. The lighting is alright.

--Explore open environment with realistic physics in the Greek countryside.
"Realistic physics"? You mean like how you can put a chair through a solid wall if you move quick enough? How about whenever something moves along the floor or touches the floor, it makes the same sound at the same volume like 20 times in a row really fast and sounds like ♥♥♥♥? The rocks are easier to throw than a glass jar in this game. Also, can you really call it an "open environment" when 90% of all the houses and buildings are locked?

--Use stealth tactics and agility to survive.
"Stealth tactics" is wrong, it is a blatant lie. There is no stealth in this game, enemies show up out of nowhere and you'll never see them before they see you and start chasing you. And there is no running in this game, you walk and enemies walk at about the same speed. They chase you at a walking pace until the game decides to give up and despawn the enemy.

--Use physics-based objects to defend yourself.
This statement is solely meant to cover for the lies of the previous statement since running away and stealth are not an option to anyone who doesn't want to backtrack even more than they have to.

--Challenging item–based Puzzles with simple interface.
I already discussed the puzzles and why they suck, but the interface is also bad. You get like 12 item slots but you'll never come close to filling that since you use items after getting them. It looks and feels ugly and rushed.

--Dark atmosphere with eerie sounds.
What "eerie sounds"? That doesn't even make sense because there are no eerie sounds at all, or anything close to that description. Also the dark atmosphere is not something to be proud of since it makes no sense either. The moonlight is so strong that it creates lightrays around every object, but everything on the ground is still pitch-black???

--Original storyline
Sonic fanfictions are also "original storylines", this is yet another meaningless statement.

Don't buy it, not even on sale.
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