It’s a lazy journalistic trope to tie the title of the game to its description.

But my goodness it’s tempting…

Agony is not a pretty game. I mean it’s set in Hell which, by its very nature, should probably not represent a vision of loveliness. But titles for this current generation of console should not feature mouth animation which makes characters look like they’ve had their jaws wired shut and lips stapled at the edges.

So our hero of first-person-view has done enough to find himself in the firey pits of damnation, along with a selection of other tortured souls who seem to know him and his deeds. This version of the netherworld also apparently has little variety in the face department, and all deliver hilariously awful lines of warning/assistance. His task is to find the Red Goddess, although quite why isn’t clear. At any rate, he’s not keen to hang around, as Hell isn’t quite the place the brochures claimed.

And the path out of Hell is strewn with increasingly monotonous mazes and figures adorned with amusing naughty bits. I’m sure they’re supposed to be horrible, but it’s like the doodlings of an overly excited 14-year-old boy have found their way into the programming. It’s an 18-rated game, but I can imagine most 18-year-olds are well past this kind of titillation.

There are skulls to find, sticks to light, wooden doors to burn and large-breasted demons to avoid.

You’ll die – often – but checkpoints are poorly distributed and have a finite life. Death does give you the chance to possess another soul and prolong matters, but instructions on how to do this lack detail, and generally off you’ll pop to the last portal ready to slog through the labyrinth adorned with suffering bodies.


I wouldn’t mind so much if the repetition didn’t send me to sleep and the gross-out arrangement had more variation.

But it did, and it doesn’t.