I mean you are a tormented soul in hell with absolutely no memories of your past. Similar to the game, this review will not hold back on some grotesque, rude and explicit (although rumour suggests a lot of the game has been censored) areas, so please stop reading if you are below the age of 18.
(DVDfever Dom adds: Rules are meant to be ignored 😉 )
Agony‘s storyline is deeply hidden beyond all its complexities, but after some reading, I have figured it to be this: You’re in hell and you want to get out. Of course, because you are a soul you can change the body you inhabit. Don’t get me wrong, the concept here is quite cool, but I would be fuming if I came back as ………… you fill in the gap. My worst nightmare would be coming back as someone in the Trump family.
(DVDfever Dom: Not me. I’d be rich!)
It’s suffice to say that Agony plays out as a scary/horror game, and having recently reviewed both Outlast games, I feel in a good position to give my overall view and opinion. Unfortunately, it isn’t a good one.
Visually, I felt Agony held up quite well, especially for the first hours. You’re deep in the depths of hell so, as you could imagine, the main colours used are black and red. Hanging corpses surround you with their bits impaled on spikes. Each corner you turn, you visualise just what hell would really look like. But there is a problem you see, after a few hours you start to get bored of black and red. You get bored of the ludicrous amount of blood, which forms ponds and cakes the walls.
You get bored on looking at the same naked body hanging on the wall or the same erect nipple bulleting out of the ceiling. So you start to look closely. Closely at the walls which look worse than they did in Skyrim seven years ago. That’s when it hits you – you have time-travelled to 1996 and you’re playing Exhumed, just with a different story line and a lot less action. I mean, the monsters look quite cool but I just feel they didn’t focus too much on the intricacies, therefore creating a game which just looks a little lazily-drawn.
For the first hour, I was pretty sure I was the most scared I had ever been. The sound tormented you with dark and sudden sounds as well as eerie music. The noises generated by the background as well as the squelch of blood dripping, and being torn out of heads had me constantly on the edge of my seat. All good things come to an end though and this came to an end when I heard the characters speak. I have to say that Agony – hands down – has the worst voice acting I have ever heard. Not only is it awful, but the dialogue is stupendously corny. Then a few more hours in, I realised that I was no longer scared by the mundane sounds in the background because they hadn’t changed all that time I had been playing. All in all, an area which could have been great took a real big hit due to bad casting and awful writing.
Unsurprisingly, the gameplay shares a similar style of boredom to it. I mean you’re in hell and all I wanted to do is shoot some numbskulls right in their ripped off nutsack! However, in real life, all I really got to do is hide and use some kind of random spells. I felt that the movement was slow and the controller seemed to suffer with a lag similar to the actual time it took to transfer to hell. I just found it all a little boring, and at no point was it particularly exciting. There were a few puzzles and mazes to navigate, but other than that I found myself doing nothing. Don’t get me wrong – some of the games where you do nothing get by due to a profound storyline. Agony is not one of these games.
As mentioned at the start, this game is agony and I haven’t forgotten the capital. You’ll probably find yourself enjoying it at the start then slowly drifting into a hellish battle trying to finish this. Respectively, this is nowhere near as bad as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants In Manhattan, but is one of the poorest games I have played in a while. That’s a real shame because the actual concept behind this game could have led to a fantastic adventure. Just not this time.
Price is already going down though so if you like the sound of it… check out the Amazon links in this review!
- Developer: Madmind Studio
- Publisher: PlayWay
- Players: single-player
I have been a video game player since 1993 and a music fan since I can remember. I studied Film and Journalism at university and ended up becoming a Primary School teacher. Video games changed my life and sent me on the right track and have stayed with me ever since.