Tormentum: Dark Sorrow Review
Tormentum: Dark Sorrow Review
I definitely recommend Tormentum to anyone who loves a dark story, beautiful and disturbing imagery, a nightmarish atmosphere and/or the fantastical art of Giger and Beksiński
Posted: 03/22/15 | Category: Review | Developer: OhNoo Studio | Platform: Windows, Mac

Genre: Fantasy/Horror Point-and-Click Adventure
Release date: March 4, 2015

Tormentum: Dark Sorrow is an Indiegogo-backed point-and-click fantasy/horror adventure from OhNoo Studio, a three-person indie development team based in Poland. I've had my eye on it since I first started covering it for JA this past June.

I could tell from pre-release screenshots and trailers that this would be my kind of game. So when the demo became available, I grabbed it.

This only left me wanting more, so I requested and received the go-ahead to write this review. Having now played the entire game I can definitely say that Tormentum has not disappointed me.


You, as the robed and hooded protagonist, have no name, no background, no identity and no memory other than that of a stone sculpture depicting hands reaching toward the sky. For most of the game, you don't even have a face.

As Tormentum begins, a quote from Immanuel Kant sets the philosophical stage. You and another unfortunate being are in cages hanging from an airship.

You are transported to a nightmarish castle and locked in a cell. You're told you'll either redeem yourself here or be endlessly tortured for your alleged sins. Unfortunately, you're unable to recall anything you may have done that could account for your imprisonment. 

The balance of the game is spent seeking the remembered sculpture, which you feel will hold the key to your salvation. You'll traverse many strange landscapes and meet and interact with a wide variety of NPCs, all exhibiting various degrees of grotesqueness. You'll also be making moral choices relative to these NPCs that will affect the outcome of the story (which has a twist I really wasn't expecting).

I found Tormentum so engaging that I later felt dreadful about one of the decisions I'd made during my first playthrough. This bothered me so much that I had to play the game a second time and change my decision.

Graphics and Atmosphere

Tormentum is one of the most hauntingly beautiful games I've ever laid eyes on. Inspired by the artwork of Swiss surrealist H. R. Giger and Poland's own surrealist/impressionist Zdzisław Beksiński, the game is an absolute feast for the eyes. Each screen is intricately detailed, visually stunning, darkly grotesque and twisted. It's no exaggeration to say that the entire game is like a work of art to me. I'm an artist myself, so you can trust me on that.

One area of the game displays walls covered in artwork, each a contradiction of disturbing imagery done in muted watercolors. Each piece can be viewed in close-up to the accompaniment of background music that's both beautiful and melancholy. This combination of elements really touched me.

I didn't find Tormentum particularly scary, but its surreal appearance, creepy ambient sounds and frequently ominous music do create a distinctly dark and unsettling overall atmosphere. The fact that I didn't know who my character was, the reason behind his imprisonment or what his fate would ultimately be only enhanced this atmosphere.


Tormentum is a relatively short game. I took my time with it, frequently lingering just to drink in the macabre visuals and dark atmosphere. It took approximately 5-6 hours altogether for me to reach the end of the game. I don't feel the game's shortness is a drawback, although some might. I think it's just right, in fact, considering the game's content.

Navigation is traditional point-and-click; you're able to move side-to-side and sometimes up or down. At lower left is a notebook in which the game keeps track of information and diagrams you'll need in order to solve some of its puzzles, and your inventory is kept in a handy leather bag at lower right.

The game borrows a couple of conventions from the world of casual gaming, each of which could be seen as a drawback. First, areas in need of attention are automatically surrounded by glowing, pulsating light. While this eliminates the need for pixel-hunting, it could also make things a bit too easy for anyone who isn't an AG neophyte. It would have been nice to have the ability to toggle these highlights on and off. 

Also, there are no user-initiated saves. Instead, the game is saved automatically upon exit. This means there is no returning to a point prior; you simply continue where you left off, and each successive autosave overwrites the current one until the end is reached. I would have liked more control over when/where to save, although this doesn't present as big an issue as it could have had the game been longer. Still, it would have been nice to be able to return directly to parts of the game I fould particularly intriguing.  

Tormentum has no voiceovers. All dialog is delivered via text, which I feel is a good fit for the game. Also, death is not an option here, as the game keeps you from unwittingly stepping into harm's way.


The game offers an assortment of puzzle types, the solutions to which involve logical interaction with the environment and/or the use of inventory items. A few are of the oft-maligned slider variety. Oh come on, stop cringing; they're quite easy to solve. In fact, I found all of Tormentum's puzzles relatively easy. The game even provides solutions to a couple of them.

Veteran players may be put off by this lack of challenge. I actually found it refreshing to play a game that has no obtuse, frustration-inducing, hair-tearing, head-banging, brain-cramping puzzles that can make a person want to toss his or her computer out the nearest window.

This also enabled me to enjoy the game's bizarre, nightmarish environments and ghastly ambience even more. To me, Tormentum is more a sensory experience than a mental exercise.


I find it incredible that a game with such polish and originality as Tormentum was developed by just three people: Piotr Ruszkowski, Lukasz Rutkowski and Grzegorz Markowski, all enormously creative and talented. This game has been crafted with a great deal of care and attention to detail, and it shows.

I wholeheartedly  recommend Tormentum to any adult player who loves a dark story, beautiful and disturbing imagery, a nightmarish atmosphere and/or the fantastical art of Giger and Beksiński. This game will transport you into a world that's unlike any you've experienced before.

I'll be deducting half a letter grade from Tormentum's score for the lack of challenge and inability to initiate saves. Other than that, the game has just about everything a fan of  fantasy/horror point-and-click adventures could want. If you're considering buying it but would like to take a test ride first, you can download a demo for either Windows or Mac.

Note: Be sure to watch the game's credits all the way to the end for more mind-blowing artwork. 

Grade: A-
Beautiful, surreal graphics
Engaging story
+ Incredible atmosphere
A wonderful homage to H.R. Giger and Zdzisław Beksiński                 
Different endings, each with a twist
Lack of challenge could put off AG veterans
Items of interest surrounded by glowing, pulsating light with no option to toggle them off/on
The game's shortness could be an issue for some players
System Requirements
Microsoft® Windows® XP/Vista/7/8
Processor: Intel® Core™ 2 Duo 2 GHz, AMD Athlon™ X2 2.2 GHz, or higher
Memory: 2 GB RAM
Graphics: 512 MB RAM
Hard Drive: 500 MB available space
Sound Card: Windows Compatible Card
OS: Snow Leopard 10.6.3 or later
Processor: Intel® Core™ 2 Duo 2 GHz
Memory: 2 GB RAM
Graphics: 512 MB RAM
Hard Drive: 500 MB available space
Specials from Digital Download
Leave A Comment
All Comments
Randall Rigdon
This game looks insane, will definitely check this out!
Posted Date : 03/26/2015
Screen Shots
Related Articles
Popular Articles
1997 - 2018 Just Adventure, LLC. All Rights Reserved
Web Analytics