We review Tormentum: Dark Sorrow, a mature iOS horror adventure game for iPad, which sees you breaking out of a sinister fortress by collecting items and solving grisly puzzles.
If you ever fancied bandying about in a gothic castle of horrors apparently inspired by the works of H.R. Giger then Tormentum should more than satisfy. This bleak adventure game for iOS devices is filled with the kind of dark and disturbing imagery that sticks in your brain like a rusty nail, long after the final credits have rolled. And that’s just one of the reasons why we love it.
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At the beginning of Tormentum, you find yourself captured and dragged aboard a dilapidated airship by a crazed crusader who offers to cleanse you of sin, by the means of some truly horrific torture methods. Wisely, you decide to break free of your cell (housed deep inside the aforementioned twisted fortress) and get your own back on the demented zealot.
The action is viewed from a side-on angle and you simply tap the screen to interact with the many hotspots in each location. There are plenty of objects to find and pick up, while most rooms also harbour some kind of (messed up) puzzle. One moment you’re fiddling with gibbet cages to raise the water level in a well and the next you’re playing with the controls of a torture device to turn the tables on an enemy.
Some of Tormentum’s brain teasers are quite imaginative, even when they’re basically nifty twists on trusty adventure game puzzles. However, none should prove particularly taxing for fans of this sort of game. We never had to resort to a walkthrough or struggled to progress, which helped to keep the pacing strong at the expense of any real challenge.
Still, despite the rather relaxed difficulty level, Tormentum is gripping from start to finish. The design work is simply brilliant; every room is drenched with sinister and disturbing touches, be it a painting of a hellish masked knight (who you can’t help but feel will burst through the paper at any moment to skewer you) or an impossibly enormous creature staring menacingly through a window at your every movement.
The only real issue we had with the presentation was the occasional difficulty in seeing the navigational arrows which show that you can walk to another scene. These sometimes blend in with the background, so we recommend tapping at the edge of every screen just in case.
Just when you think Tormentum is reaching its climax, the game keeps on going; in fact, without spoiling anything, you’ll get a good few hours of playtime for your money. So if you have any love for gothic horror, or simply enjoy a well-crafted iOS adventure game, we heartily recommend Tormentum: Dark Sorrow.