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Platform

PC

 

Genre

Action

 

Publisher

03 Entertainment

 

Developer

Cinemaware

 

ESRB

M (Mature)

 

Released

December 2004

 

 

- Reminds of my trip to Spain

- A small dash of humor

 

 

- The game comes screaming outta 1998

- Action elements are slow and plodding

- Graphics are muddy

- Brainless enemy AI

 

 

Review: Grand Theft Auto - San Andreas (PS2)

Review: Alien Hominid (PS2)

Review: BloodRayne 2 (XB)

 

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Torrente

Score: 4.0 / 10

Nothing quite smells like a B-grade game.  In the case of Torrente, the B-grade smell will hit you even before you open the box.  I’ll admit that I’ve seen the first Torrente film – it happened somewhere in the middle of a story that begins with “I was so drunk,” and ends with a confrontation with Spanish authorities.  There’s a third film on the horizon but the titular Torrente doesn’t change – he’s a big mouthed, bigoted, utterly sexist pig, I mean, ex-cop.  His character isn’t changed for the game and Torrente is even voiced by the real actor, Santiago Segura (who also wrote and directed the first film), which provides for a continuity of sorts, but this is no movie adaptation.

 

torrente pc review           torrente pc review

 

In fact, I’d hardly classify Torrente as a game.  That assessment may be cruel but what else can I say about a product that came screaming out of 1998?

 

Obviously, the graphics aren’t anywhere close to other action games like GTA: San Andreas, BloodRayne 2, or Half-Life 2.  While I liked the sketched menus the rest of the game is unforgivably messy, even on the highest settings.  Textures are smeared, explosions flat, and detail lacking.  And not only do you get to see everything from a 3rd person view behind Torrente, you can switch to a first-person view on the fly so you can see those awful graphics up close.

 

I hoped the action would elevate Torrente’s otherwise underwhelming graphical presentation, but it falls so low the game could have been subtitled, “Torrente: Follow the Pudgy Guy Around a Boring World.”  Besides a few “on rails” missions which require a steady aim, the action is laboriously slow.  Torrente spends most of the game plodding from one objective to another, popping bad guys with a single shot (maybe two) with whatever weapon he’s holding.  Mission types don’t extend to any new territory.

 

torrente pc review           torrente pc review

 

Special mention should be made of the AI.  You’d be hard pressed to find a more predictable AI.  Upon spotting Torrente most enemies will run straight at him occasionally stepping to one side, which forces you to actually move the mouse to shoot them.  Sometimes you’ll come across goons that stand at a distance and lob 

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rocket-propelled grenades at Torrente.  If he gets hit by one of these projectiles, it’s instant death, requiring you to start the level all over again.  The fact that it sometimes takes a few run-throughs to even spot the grenade launching goons really helps remind you just how slow the gameplay is as Torrente “runs” back to the spot. (Being able to commandeer any of the vehicles in the game would have alleviated this.)

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I actually do like the audio component of Torrente, even if some of his in action quips don’t make any sense and the sound effects are painfully generic.

 

I’ll give Torrente credit for something else, it reminded me of that hot night in Spain all those years ago.  It’s a fond memory even though it ended in a pool of my own bloody vomit.  Unfortunately, the same can’t be said of Torrente – it’ll bore you to tears in about 20 minutes.

 

- D.D. Nunavut

(February 16, 2005)

 

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