Saturday, September 18

Tormented Souls Review: Old School Survival Horror | Digital Trends Spanish

Tormented Souls review: old school survival horror


  • The design of the levels is very good

  • The puzzles are very well put together (and they are not easy)

  • The atmosphere is really oppressive


  • The voices and the dialogues

  • Tank controls are what they are, for better and for worse

The style and format of video games of the genre survival horror more classic cut decades ago was left behind. The most notable example is Resident Evil, that from his fourth part he took a step forward and never turned back, except for a small exception.

However, there are still players nostalgic for the survival horror from the old school and for them, comes a product made to measure: Tormented souls, game created by the Chilean studio Abstract Digital Works and which is basically a revival of the titles that caused great impact towards the end of the 90s.

Tormented Souls, pure old school

Tormented souls check all checks from a video game that could well have existed in 1999. The game system is based on fixed cameras and a character that moves with tank-like controls; the general idea has to do with touring an entire house and unraveling a mystery, solving various puzzles that are basically the highlight of the game.

From the first moment of the game, Tormented souls makes it clear that things are not going to be easy because even the first puzzle is not and opening the lock on the bathroom stall may take longer than normal for an initial challenge. Now, this is not bad at all; it is simply an example of what will come later throughout the mansion-hospital in which the game takes place.

If one knew from the outset the solution to all the puzzles that one is going to encounter, completing the game would not take more than a couple of hours. But in practice, see the credits of Tormented souls It is an exercise of at least 8 or 10 hours, as some puzzles have not so obvious solutions. And so much so, that in my tour of the house at one point I had to write down a combination on a piece of paper to activate a mechanism.

The puzzles in the game are well planned. The are very intelligent and go hand in hand with the context of the story and the game. Clearly, the studio spent time making sense of the puzzle-narrative mix, beyond the fact that sometimes the solutions are simpler than some clues suggest.

Usually, Tormented souls It does not merit much qualms about the challenges that are presented throughout the game. Sometimes, of course, it is easy to get lost a bit with the solutions and especially towards the end, when the inventory is full of journal entries and data that you have to review several times until you remember which was the last one (or the useful one for a Given moment).

But in the long run, that is just a detail in a game that hits the spot – never better said and those who play it will know why – by placing great emphasis on a fundamental aspect of the game. survival horror classic.

A mansion in great detail

On Tormented souls what you do throughout the entire game is basically tour a gigantic house in which they happen very strange things. And how could it be otherwise, it is not arriving and going from one place to another since many doors or entire wings are closed and only open as keys are found, electricity is activated and so on.

The hospital where the whole game takes place has a very detailed design in general. The most obvious thing is the visual, since it is not limited only to being a set of spaces to be explored but also some corridors and rooms tell their own story, from the posters, photos or pictures hanging on the wall.

But in addition to the ornamental, there is also the design of the house as a structure. Although everything happens in one place, the mansion is full of areas that at first seem remote but are actually connected by doors or passageways that open from only one side. And as the game progresses and the places are memorized – which you pass over and over again – these shortcuts come in handy.

Despite this, not even in the final hours the route becomes simpler. In particular, the last area is extremely oppressive and at times it seems taken out of context, as if it were another game. This is not bad, far from it: Tormented souls It lives up to its name in the last dungeon, built in a labyrinth format and which can make you have a hard time if you get there without the right tools.

About that save system …

The previous paragraph necessarily goes hand in hand with a somewhat controversial element, which is the way games are saved in Tormented Souls: For this, there are some audio recorders distributed throughout the house and whose locations are always easily accessible, as well as being enemy-free zones.

The problem? To use the recorders (and save game) you need some tapes, which are not unlimited. And when you lose, you start over at the last saved game; There is not autosave Nothing like that. Therefore, in Tormented souls You have to be very careful with the use of tapes, since although it is common to have one or two in inventory, any wrong move can result in losing a significant advance.

It should be noted that the game’s combat system is very simple, but highly functional thanks to a handful of weapons available. Enemies have relatively easy patterns to learn, many of them can be dodged without a problem, and perhaps the greatest difficulty lies in the shortage of ammo. In general, it is only in the first sections of the game that the relationship with the enemies becomes a bit more problematic, but beyond the lack of ammunition, there is always a way to deal with the rivals. Even if it is escaping from them.

Tormented Souls is made to order

Before closing, a little reflection is valid. Tormented souls is clearly done thinking of appealing to the nostalgia of the survival of the old school. And therefore, who did not enjoy the resident Evil or Alone in the Dark originals, you’re hardly going to be interested in this one, which feels a bit out of date next to the modern take on the genre.

Instead, fans of this type of game have here a product made to measure. The story has a couple of very interesting twists and the theme has to do with religious themes in which there are even temporary jumps that contribute more than it seems at first glance. On the other hand, the soundtrack and the dynamic lighting system translate into a truly oppressive atmosphere, especially in the underground levels.

Tormented souls It is not a perfect game far from it and there are details that make it clear that it is not a blockbuster; the acting work is not very Elegant and tank controls can sometimes play tricks, especially when changing perspective.

But at the same time, Tormented souls is a good horror game that fulfills everything that is expected of a title that has no more pretensions than to play and feel like a product of 20 years ago. And that is achieved perfectly.

Tormented souls It is available on PlayStation 5 and Steam for a price of $ 20.

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