Do you find yourself searching for dark, depressing games? If so, then you don’t have many options. Tormentum – Dark Sorrow seems set to fit into that niche – perhaps a bit too well. Developed by OhNoo, this 2D point and click adventure game has recently seen crowdfunding success via Indiegogo. Why are people so willing to support a brand new adventure game? Check out the demo and you’ll likely see why.
Tormentum‘s demo is short, but it does a surprisingly great job of showing the game’s basic concept. You’re dropped right into the action with two characters in cages being carried by a gigantic bird. You are a man in a cloak with no memory, while your cage-mate is an anthropomorphic rodent. It speaks to you about being plucked from its family and fearing for them. Its worries are matched by your own over your missing memories.
Both of you are then unceremoniously shoved into a jail cell. Here another odd character speaks to you in unclear ways before leaving. Everything about the storyline so far feels disorienting and arcane, but once left alone, a veteran point and click player should know exactly what to do.
Peering around the room reveals inventory items, a few puzzles, and other genre tropes (as well as the remains of its former occupants). As per modern adventure game conventions, important items have a small spotlight on them. Because each room is so small this doesn’t seem necessary, though. Hopefully the highlight function will be optional in Tormentum’s full version.
The demo’s puzzles leave much to be desired, simple as they are. At least each type of puzzle is unique, which bodes well for the full game. One puzzle simply has you collecting objects scattered across rooms while another tasks players with reconstructing an ancient mechanism. It’s likely that the complete version will increase puzzle difficulty with time, but if not point and click veterans will find themselves bored quickly.
One thing that everyone, adventure fans or not, can admire are Tormentum’s astonishing visuals. OhNoo takes inspiration from artists like Zdzislaw Beksinski and H.R. Giger, and it shows. Although Beksinski may not be as well known to Western gamers, his art style is easily as striking as Giger’s. It’s amazing that this three person development team were able to pull off an aesthetic that looks comparable to its amazing inspirations. This is shaping up to be one of the best-looking adventure games out there.
This small taste of Tormentum makes me crave more. Of course, since this is a crowdfunded project, the developers may end up requiring more time than their suggested October 2014 release date. Thankfully, the project has already been funded over its $9,000 goal. There’s still a few days left to chip in if you want to support Tormentum.