Indie Review: Ages Of Irving
Yet another intriguing little game to be taken from the LD24 indie competition is Ages of Irving, a unique torture simulator and puzzle game from Deconstructeam. Is it worth the time?
- Worth The Time?Yes, definitely, because torture is fun.
- Things LovedThe simple yet effective design of the game, the enjoyable torture sessions, the graphical style, the great humour, the hilarious cameos.
- Things HatedYou eventually run out of things to do with your money, it can be repetitive.
- RecommendationIt's free, and it will take you just about an hour to complete if you don't rush through it. You should definitely play this.
- Name: Ages Of Irving
- Genre: Torture Simulator, Puzzle
- Players: 1
- Multiplayer: N/A
- Platforms: PC
- Developer: Deconstructeam
- Publisher: Deconstructeam
- Price: Free
- Reviewed On: PC
You can play it for free here.
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Ages of Irving caught my eye because I saw the words ‘torture simulator’, but let’s not discuss my insane impulses. It’s another intriguing little game to come out of the LD24 indie competition, developed by Deconstructeam. Ages of Irving is a torture simulator and puzzle game that focuses on you interrogating a number of suspects ranging from simple thieves to masters like Agent 47 himself. Yes, that’s just one of the hilarious cameos this game has. The game starts with an unknown man in a chair recounting a story of how he lost his humanity, and this is essentially what the plot is about. You’ll progress through the narrative by torturing information you need from various targets, and as a result your respect level will increase, which allows you to progress to the next chapter once it maxes out.
The gameplay is very simple and very enjoyable. You’ll select your target from the main menu, and then be allowed to buy information about the target before beginning the interrogation. These tips are very useful as they give you hints about what methods may or may not work best. You’ll get money for each successful or unsuccessful interrogation, and this can be used to purchase both new brutal torture methods as well as upgrades to speech craft. You’ll need to invest money in both if you want to come out on top, because you’ll need a bit of thought and finesse to get the information you need without accidentally killing your target. It’s hardly the end of the world if your target does die, you’ll still get to go on, claim money and carry on to the next target, but you won’t be able to finish the game if too many targets die, and will need to restart. The game is played by you basically picking at your target from various options such as talking, using a brutal tool or making use of advanced skills, or speech craft. Effective inputs lower your target’s willpower, and they will crack when it’s reduced to zero. However, using tools reduces your target’s health, and it’s obvious what happens if you go too far.
You’ll basically need to find the perfect balance between brutality and finesse, but each target in the game is different and must be approached in different ways. Some information you buy beforehand can be priceless in determining which topics will be most effective or the least effective, and you’ll need to be careful because saying something ineffective will actually make your target more confident, increasing willpower. You can use your tools as many times as you want, and these are anything from punches to hammers and scalpels to a dentist drill or electric studs. However, advanced skills can only be used a limited number of times depending on the skill and available options, and these are like threats, sympathetic approaches, acting like a psycho, making jokes and playing it cool or actually staring down your target. These elements ensure that the game never stops being entertaining, because it’s always funny or interesting to test the waters and try different approaches. Of course, getting your target to crack is satisfying, especially when they spill the beans and you get your rewards. The only issue I had with the game is that once you buy everything, there’s pretty much nothing left to do with your money for the last stretch of levels other than buy information you can easily afford by then, so it might have been nice to have more elite tools and such available to purchase.
The graphical style of the game is quite nice to look at. You’d think that all grey, black and white would be rather dull, but it actually works great in the game and does its job in helping the sinister theme. It’s simple, but effective, and it’s good to see that gore hardly features, and most of the hardcore stuff is blatantly implied rather than shown. I liked the way your main character changes his appearance as the story progresses. The game doesn’t have a lot of audio to speak of other than a simple tune for the menu, so there’s not much to say here. Ages of Irving will take you just about an hour to complete if you don’t rush through it, so it’s great to pass the time with and play in doses while you’re browsing the internet. It does get repetitive if you play it all in one go, which you will most likely do, but fortunately its length ensures that by the time this happens you’ll be satisfied and it will be just about over.
Ages of Irving is a great little game from Deconstructeam that is addictive, well-designed and very enjoyable to sit through. I’m sure its concept alone will be enough to attract players to it already, and that’s a good thing because the game is free and easy to play, packs a unique and interesting experience and won’t take too much of your time, so you should definitely play this.