Confused by Moons of Madness’s ending? Here’s what it means – with spoilers, naturally.
Moons of Madness is not, despite the game’s title, a game where, playing as Cthulhu, you go around pressing your naked backside against glass-fronted skyscrapers. Instead, it’s a single-player space-based horror game set in the same universe as Funcom’s MMO ‘The Secret World’.
It sees you struggling to combat an eldritch force that corrupts everything it touches, as well as the possible return of two ancient, eldritch gods. If you’ve read any H.P. Lovecraft, the mythos that Moons of Madness emulates, you can tell that things aren’t going to end well. The game’s ending is a little confusing, so let us explain what it all means.
Moons of Madness’ ending explained
Shane was instrumental in waking the Dreamers because, at an early age, he was exposed to the Necronomicon, giving him the scars on his right hand. His mother Cynthia, who was trapped between dimensions, wanted to wake them to free herself.
Cynthia never recovered; she was just pretending to be back to ‘normal’ to get Shane to use the Martian machine. Because of the eldritch taint he’d received from the Necronomicon, his touch was enough to permanently damage the machine that would have restrained the Dreamers, ancient beings that were slumbering inside Mars’s moons.
The Orochi Group had no interest in waking the Dreamers, though they did see Cynthia’s discoveries as a way of acquiring more power. But they did recruit Shane for the Mars mission because of his Necromicon exposure. The chaos inflicted by The Filth meant Orochi had little chance of stopping Cynthia though whether The Filth was sentient enough to do this on purpose is not explained.
Shane’s proximity to Phobos and Deimos, the moons that housed the Dreamers, helped awaken them though indications are they would have awoken soon anyway. If you choose to destroy them, Shane dies in space. If you let them awaken, it’s unclear if Shane dies or if he ‘lives’ because of his connection to the Dreamers.
If the Dreamers wake, do they go on to wreck the universe? It’s possible, but they’re not painted as downright malicious, more otherworldly. They might head to Earth and drive everyone mad or just roam off into the cosmos.
Still, with Moons of Madness echoing H.P. Lovecraft’s work, the game was never going to end with a pinata party.