E3 2003: The Suffering Hands-on Impressions
Mature games, or should I say games that attempt to be mature by adding gratuitous violence and gore, are all the rage these days. The Suffering is yet another game in the genre that tries to gore you out, but this game goes way over the boundaries set by other games when it comes to objectionable content. Set in a modern day prison, The Suffering tells the tale of an alleged psychopathic killer, named Tork, who greased his wife and his kids. With more F bombs dropped in the opening movie than in one episode of The Sopranoís, including racial slurs, the very first thing this game did was offend me. Iím not a gentle, wimpering mamaís boy, but I donít feel I need to be subjected to racism and foul language for absolutely no reason.
However, that was soon forgotten when all the guards started dying in a hail of painful screams under a rumbling roof. Some form of unidentifiable evil had infiltrated the prison and was dining on correctional officers and prisoners alike. Tork soon finds his way out of his cell when one of the mysterious creatures slices the bars in half. After snatching a knife from the cell block punk, now dead, I set out to escape the facility before I become lunch meat.
The Suffering hosts some of the most graphic material ever seen in a game. As I walked around, I saw guards missing both legs from the waist down trying to crawl to safety, leaving a trail of blood and entrails. Some guards where eaten alive by these still half unseen beast/killers, while others were crushed to death under collapsing roofs. To say the very least, this is a disturbingly violent game.
The gameplay was nothing more than your typical survival horror/action title; find object A that will allow you to progress to area B only to find out you have to backtrack to area Z to find...you get the picture. I acquired some items along the way, like health potions and the like. I also lost interest really, really fast.
The Suffering is a long way from being anything but an offensive game on many fronts. It has tons of graphic violence. Now all it needs is a premise for that violence and gameplay that might actually support it.
5/14/2003 Ryan Hartmann