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You know what’s sexier than a chick with a gun? A chick with a gun that yells obscenities because fuck you, this is Tormentor X Punisher. The Logo looks like something that belongs on the cover of a death metal album. A demon’s head being ripped open, brain exposed, nails in its face – it deserved to die because once again fuck you, this is Tormentor X Punisher. Developed by E-Studio and published by Raw Fury, Tormentor X Punisher was released on Steam in June, 2017. It’s a brutal, violent, and vulgar twin stick shooter that puts you in the shoes a very angry woman on a rampage slaughtering every demon in her path. It’s fast-paced, action-packed, challenging, and does not fuck around.
Welcome to Planet Fuck You. The game opens with a pretty awesome animated cut scene and as far as I can tell, the story is simple. A woman is in a bar with demons and they piss her off so she decides to go on a rampage to murder every last fucking one. The voice acting consists of a lot of grunting, screaming, and swearing because that’s what you do when you go on a rampage. And I love it.
Tormentor supports keyboard and mouse and controllers and there is no pausing the gameplay. You press start on the controller or Escape on the keyboard and it quits to the main menu which is actually kind of annoying. The objective is to kill as many demons as you can and set a high score. One hit kills everything. The protagonist, enemies, bosses – nothing is safe. You die and it’s game over. When you do die (and you will die) a demon will approach her lifeless corpse and taunt her, making you aware of how much you suck. He’s too much of a little bitch to say anything to her face when she’s alive because he knows she would probably disembowel him and then wrap him up with his own intenstines before blowing off his head with a shotgun.
The animated cut scene shows the woman wielding a gun with a skull on the barrel because she’s obviously metal as fuck. You can see the skull in her sprite, too. It appears that this weapon is a machine gun and shotgun in one and comes with infinite ammo because that’s clearly badass. You know what else is badass? Reloading the machine gun by firing the shotgun. That’s right. Traditional reloading is for assholes. When you need to reload the machine gun, you fire the shotgun, because if you’re not constantly shooting, then you’re playing the game wrong and you deserve to die. Shotgun pellets can bounce off walls and the machine gun’s final bullet before needing to be reloaded will leave a blazing trail of fire along the ground. I played through the game with an Xbox One controller and can happily say the control scheme is comfortable and the controls are responsive. You can freely move around the arena and aim in any direction. You should always keep moving.
On the surface, Tormentor just looks like a simple run and gun twin-stick shooter but there is actual depth to the gameplay. The enemies will fuck you six ways from Sunday and to get better and achieve higher scores, you need to practice. When you die, you’ll have to start all over from the beginning. The entire game is basically a survival/endless mode. The “How to Play” tutorial shows you just enough to get you started but it doesn’t get into the nitty gritty. Killing enemies rewards you with points. Killing them in creative ways rewards you with more points. Killing them in a creative way a specific amount of times grants you upgrades. If you want to survive for a while, you’ll want to learn how to obtain upgrades and the best order to get them in. The requirements for each upgrade are different and the upgrades are the game’s way of encouraging you to try new things. You can set enemies on fire, electrocute them, and decimate them in other brutal ways. You can even punch them in their ass-ugly demonic faces. Any shmuck can run around and mindlessly shoot at everything that moves but only a badass woman knows how to do it in style and is then rewarded for it.
Committing acts of demonic genocide isn’t easy but someone has to do it. God and son are obviously too fucking lazy and Doomguy is currently pinching a loaf. So this chick stepped up to the task. That’s the backstory I’m going with. The Demonic Nation has an endless supply of denizens ready to kill you and they all spawn in the arena where the game takes place. It’s basically a giant square box. The flaming pentagrams that appear on the ground indicate enemy spawn points and as the chick, it’s your job to greet them with vulgar language and a hailstorm of gunfire. Grunts will chase you down and try to fuck you up with melee weapons. Shielders can deflect your projectiles and charge at you and it’s best to not let them grow in numbers. Wizards and Bollocks fire projectiles and Bollocks only seem to spawn when there’s acid pools lying around. The acid pools are a result of one of seven bosses. All bosses except one will appear after killing enough enemies and they do seem to be randomized. You never know which one will appear. The bosses are tough relentless assholes that can alter the environment. One leaves behind acid pools, another summons stone walls, and one boss will leave behind a massive saw blade that travels along the walls.
The gameplay is very fast-paced and if you’re not aware of your surroundings, you’re going to get stabbed, shot, crushed, burned alive, blown up, pissed on, fucked in the ears with cactus dildos, and sodomized with pitchforks. Okay, so maybe some of that isn’t true but you’ll definitely die if you don’t pay attention. Enemies and projectiles will fill screen, you’ll constantly be surrounded, and the bodies will pile up which will eventually top off with the chick’s corpse because death is inevitable and fuck you. Once you get into a rhythm, feeling like you can’t be stopped is exhilarating. That is until some little demonic dickwad ends your run because you were distracted by the boss chasing you around with attacks while you were trying to kill it and keep the enemy numbers down as they endlessly spawn in and avoid the hazards left behind by the previous bosses. So you die and scream “fuck you” at the screen like a mature badass adult and then start the process all over again because this isn’t just a game, this is Tormentor X Punisher. The gameplay pauses whenever a boss appears or you kill one. I get that this effect is to make these events feel more impactful but it can throw off your rhythm. To stay alive you need to keep moving and remain alert at all times and any interruptions can easily mess up your run.
Not only is Tormentor full of colorful language but colorful visuals as well. It’s got a colorful, cartoon-y, comic book style that compliments the humorous and juvenile language and tone. The sprite work is good, enemies will explode into bloody chunks, making each kill feel satisfying, the arena will be covered in blood and shell casings, and dead bodies stay on the ground until it’s game over. The screen will shake frequently which can enhance the action but if it’s too much for you, it can be reduced from the options menu. Your weapon’s muzzle flashes are bright, fire and explosions look excellent, and text to indicate significant kills along with the obscene words shouted by the protagonist will pop-up the screen as you obliterate your foes. All of the text can sometimes be distracting but it’s still nice because it means even those that are hard of hearing can enjoy the wonderful vocabulary. The soundtrack is pumping with metal tunes that fit the action well and get you into the action. And the audio work in general is well done. The weapons sound powerful, you can hear the demons gargling and making disgusting noises, and the chick will scream and grunt as she goes about her rampage. On the technical side, I can’t say I noticed any issues.
Tormentor X Punisher is hilarious, chaotic, violent, brutal, vulgar, and I fucking love it. There’s even a two player mode so you can fuck up some demons with a friend. I do wish it had more content but I’ll admit it’s hard to stop playing as is. The replay value in Tormentor is high and that’s thanks to the addictive and unforgiving gameplay. The cut scene shown when you launch the game sets up all you need to know and then you can jump right into the action. And if the game isn’t hard enough to satisfy the needs of your masochist lifestyle, there is a hard mode which can be activated right at the beginning of a run. Tormentor is one of the best twin stick shooters I’ve played in a while and I’m shocked that I haven’t discovered it until recently. If Smash TV, Doom, Hotline Miami, and Joe Pesci got into some kind of weird orgy and one of them got pregnant, let’s say Hotline Miami, the baby would be Tormentor X Punisher, and the birth would look something like Cannibal Corpse’s The Wretched Spawn album cover. If you can’t understand that then I don’t know what to tell you other than fuck you, this is Tormentor X Punisher.
I would absolutely recommend Tormentor X Punisher to anyone whose badass enough to play it. If you don’t like twin stick shooters, then you’re not badass enough. If you don’t like violence, bloodshed, and brutality, then you’re not badass enough. If you don’t like vulgar language, then you’re not badass enough and I’m amazed you got to the end of this review. If you don’t like fun, then you’re not badass enough and you have some serious problems. This game tells the story of a heroic woman. A classy woman. A woman who doesn’t take shit from anyone. A woman who would kill a demon and then rip the horns off its head and use them to fuck the corpse in the ass. My kind of woman. If you like fast-paced, chaotic, action-packed, twin stick shooters, definitely check out Tormentor X Punisher.