The infamous and depraved game Agony comes back with more sex and more violence!
Genre: FPex, FPP, Horror
Developer: Madmind Studio
Publisher: Madmind Studio
Release date: 30 Oct, 2018
Back from hell
My initial review of Agony left me unimpressed. My feeling was that 80% of the game was an awful stealth game spreading over confusing and ugly labyrinths, and I thought that it should have all been scrapped in favor of an FPEx (First Person Exploration game) or “Walking Simulator”. With that in mind, you can see why I would be skeptical when Madmind Studio announced that they wanted to ADD to the game.
My assessment was that things should be removed, not added! Still, censoring part of the game due to the console release was a major cause for negative review bombing on Steam, and this Unrated version is their chance to make things right. It’s free for previous owners of Agony, and I will explore whether it’s worth playing it again if you owned Agony or whether it’s worth buying if the initial release put you off.
Bigger and rounder boobs
Let’s start with graphical updates, as the character models have been improved and are much less awful to behold than before. The “blurry soup of vomit” filter spattered over the textures has been removed, and the game is more pleasing to the eyes. The skill system with upgrades to unlock is much clearer this time around. Overall, the game is aesthetically in a better place, even though all those forests and caves are still not very interesting. Framerate-wise, the game runs a little bit better, but it still struggles painfully at times.
Map to a Demon’s heart
The most valuable feature that I did not see in promotional material was the addition of a real-time map in a corner of the screen. It made the maze sequences more tolerable, while also giving the luxury to display items to pick up. Just because of this, I finally finished the game (my previous attempts with the original game invariably ended in rage quits). To compensate for the “unfair” advantage given by the ability to orientate yourself, the developers added new traps, like circular saws and spears that pierce anyone attempting to go through a narrow tunnel at the wrong time. At first, I was pestering against an already annoying game made more difficult, but then I realized that I could use the blades to kill demons under my possession. I will let you enjoy the irony of playing a game marketing its ability to control demons, while only using this feature to make them die one by one so that my human self would be left alone and free to explore.
Finally the violence we wanted
Finally, a major addition is the Succubus mode. As the name implies, it allows to step back into the game, but as a Succubus rather than a frail human, and it makes things quite different. The creature is fast and knows how to fight, so the roaming monster sequences are much more dynamic. Furthermore, it’s quite pleasing to languidly caress the demons before slipping my hand in what serves them as a mouth to extract their still beating heart. Brutality does not end here, as the beast breaks the neck of the babies she picks up from the ground. Ok, those babies have a monstrous head so the impact is not as high, but still. By the way, some of these babies were added to the main adventure too, there are doors opening only when you give babies to their outstretched hands. I must admit that it was fun. Lastly, there is a new enemy type: pregnant women who seem to be in a lot of pain, until their belly explodes, releasing swarms of spiders attacking you. Obviously, the woman and you are better off trampling on her stomach.
Where the hell is my tail?
Going back to our Succubus. Since she does not have the power to possess demons or pick up torches, progress in the game was slightly adjusted. She can break wooden grates with her bare claws, and she can jump to highlighted marks on the walls. This is not used much, but it’s still a welcome change of pace. On the other hand, the map is not displayed anymore: the developers saw this mode as an offering to those who already completed the normal game. I find this opinion disputable, it would have been much more simple to let those who want the map display it, while others can hide it.
However, a major flaw is the starting area; I spent half an hour exploring the level without managing to place all the required hearts on the first room’s scale, before realizing that there was a small crawlspace in that first room that lead to a new way to bypass the locked door. Thus, the whole caves/prison level had its entrance wide open for no reason at all, since there was nothing to find. Just a waste of my time. No indication that the path was elsewhere. Another testament to the lack of polish that this studio can show! Anyway, once I moved on from the bad start, the remixed adventure of our quick and violent Succubus was much more enjoyable than the base game! No more annoying sigil puzzles to solve, no more waiting and hiding. Only the new traps can sometimes be a danger to our hero’s fragile skin, wherever there is some of it left.
If you already own Agony, the Succubus mode of the Unrated version can reconcile your purchase. It’s still imperfect, but less frustrating and truly brutal this time around. If you were waiting before buying, well it’s still not a great game, but now it would be understandable to get it on sale. Most of the game’s appeal is based on its fascinating highly sexualized female demons, but apart from them and some nice backgrounds made of flesh, bone, and mouths, as a horror fan I was still not entirely convinced.