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Platform: PC, PS2, XB
Genre: Action
Publisher: Midway
Developer: Surreal Software
ETA: Fall 2005
Related Links:

Review: The Suffering (XB)

Review: The Suffering (PC)





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The Suffering: Ties that Bind


the suffering ties that bind preview          the suffering ties that bind preview


As a come-out-of-nowhere hit for Midway in 2004, The Suffering secured its place on the list of greatest survival-horror games of all-time (as well as topping the list for most vulgarity ever in a game: so much hard-core cussing in The Suffering, you’ll lose count). The Suffering was personally the most tense, frighteningly scary game I’ve ever played.


The game focused on the character Torque, a death row inmate that was sentenced to death for the grisly death of his wife and young children. His first night on the block turns out to be a total nightmare, as gruesome events and the stench of death soon surround and engulf the island-isolated prison and Torque. The prison setting, great story (where everything isn’t as it always seems, including the level of Torque’s “guilt” in the murders he’s been found guilty of), and altogether creepy monsters and specters that constantly attacked unexpectedly from the shadows came together to become an amazing game in the genre.


Well, with success in the video game industry today comes sequel. And The Suffering is no exception. Coming this fall is The Suffering: Ties that Bind, which follows the events immediately following Torque’s escape from the hell of Abbott State Penitentiary. There’s more diversity in the game’s setting this time around as Torque visits the mean streets and prisons of Baltimore to solve the mystery of the ties that bind him to the horrific happenings that seem to trail him everywhere he goes.


Scared straight out of the hands of Midway PR rep, here’s the official game info:


DESCRIPTION Suffering: Ties That Bind is a revolutionary action-horror game that emphasizes the disturbing terror of its predecessor, with all-new twisted creatures and a few familiar faces.


Set in the slums and prisons of Baltimore, the player once again controls Torque as he seeks revenge against the mysterious grand manipulator Caleb Blackmore, a man somehow tied to the death of Torque’s family.


Players will explore the tough and unforgiving inner-city streets, with poverty and urban injustices trapping people just as effective as a physical prison. The unique morality system returns, as players delve into the perverse world of Torque’s sanity to discover his past and struggle to control his future.


FEATURES JOURNEY INTO MADNESS: Delve deep into Torque’s past with flashbacks and define his future path while battling inner demons, rage, and a tenuous grip on sanity.


DISTURBING CHARACTERS AND CREATURES: A plethora of brand new ferocious fiends in addition to several returning favorites designed to depict tough societal problems like street crimes, gun violence and riots that prosper in poverty stricken slums.


CHOOSE YOUR PATH – CHOOSE YOUR PLOT: Define the true story behind the nature of Torque’s crimes and his journey into madness with game-defining moral choices that affect the game’s outcome - each path providing a completely different gaming experience.




MASTER THE RAGE: New multi-leveled insanity mode is tied directly to players’ actions, creating the most deadly weapon in the game - Torque’s inner demon. This giant, horrific creature goes from normal to brutal and bloodthirsty depending on the moral path that players choose to follow.


A SEEDY, URBAN WORLD: Explore the gritty slums, streets, and prisons of Baltimore, battling urban injustices and demons spawned from historical events of urban squalor.


REFINED AND ENHANCED GAMEPLAY: Featuring a redesigned and streamlined inventory, expanded player movement mechanics, refined controls, more varied and advanced enemy AI and a large arsenal of weapons Ties that Bind melds big action sequences with visceral horror elements.


the suffering ties that bind preview          the suffering ties that bind preview


I myself have high expectations for The Suffering: Ties that Bind. I’m a little worried that the move from the claustrophobic environment of the prison and its secluded island could effect the tenseness of the game’s mood (and thereby lead to a less scary game), but I anticipate that not being a problem if the development team uses the same stellar blueprint that devised the original terror-fest to craft The Suffering: Ties that Bind.


- Lee Cieniawa

(April 11, 2005)