Section V: Story

Game Progression Overview

As the game begins, it is night, and Torque is brought by boat to Carnate Island and Abbott State Penitentiary, where he will eventually be executed for the murder of his ex-wife and two children. Torque s boat ties up at the docks on the east side of the island, and he is then moved to a short, black school bus that transports him up to the prison. The bus passes numerous landmarks during the journey, including the town, the lighthouse, and theWorldWar II fort. In the prison, Torque undergoes the standard admittance procedure and is then escorted to his cell by two guards who discuss his crime between them along the way. Once they reach his cell, one looks at his watch and mentions how, if his watch is right, the prison has just now finally executed Willie Wiggins after ten years on the row. The guard drops off a box containing Torque s personal effects, including an artist s sketchpad.

Locked inside his cell, Torque has a minute to look around. Looking at the artist s pad, he sees a few drawings falling out of it, one of them a version of what the player will later become introduced to as Torque s monstrous form, the image of his dark side that he came up with as a child.

Suddenly, chaos erupts outside his cell and Torque hears people screaming and other bizarre noises as the entire building shakes as if an earthquake is happening. Soon a creature rips off the door of his cell, and Torque is able to move about the death house structure. Initially, Torque s primary goal is to keep himself alive as he navigates his way through the building, including its various execution chambers and abandoned basement . Torque acquires weapons as he goes that makes staying alive possible.

Leaving the death house, the player meets Dallas, a prisoner who befriends Torque and wants to help him. Dallas presents the first of many bogus theories Torque will hear about why the monsters have come to Carnate: there were government scientists experimenting on prisoners and those experiments have gone horribly awry. Dallas leads the player through the several areas of the prison, and eventually the player is able to open a gate, which allows Dallas to make a break for freedom and safety.

The player proceeds cautiously through the prison, navigating his way through a cellblock, and eventually making his way into a guard tower. From the top of the guard tower the player is able to see the island s lighthouse to the east, shining its light through the fog accompanied by the intermittent wail of its foghorn. In the guard tower Torque meets Luther, a large guard who has mentally snapped, and is now afraid of everything he encounters. Using a spotlight to scare creatures away from Luther, the guard leads Torque into the communications building so they can call for help.

Unfortunately the radio has been damaged and needs parts to be fixed. Luther explains that the guards use the abandoned asylum on the far west side of the island as a place to relax away from the prison and away from their families, who live in the small town on the east side of the island. In the asylum they have another radio that should have the parts this radio needs. If Torque can go there and return with the parts, they can get the radio working and summon help to the island.

Luther suggests that the best way to get to the asylum is to leave the prison through the graveyard entrance . Following his instructions, Torque successfully makes it out of the prison and to the graveyard. Needing to navigate through the graveyard, where the player will expect to find creatures to battle but instead hears only disembodied voices, the player progresses to an abandoned quarry. Used for prisoners sentenced to hard labor in the years following World War II, the quarry has been abandoned for decades. Torque must navigate through the quarry to reach a path that winds up the hill to the asylum.

The asylum has been abandoned for nearly a hundred years and looks it: ceilings are collapsed , the tile floor is rotting, the paint is peeling off the walls, and the player is only able to access a small section of the building. Once inside, Torque is quickly locked in the building by the projected formof the long-dead head of the asylum, Doctor Killjoy. The player soon meets Sergei, a guard who was in the asylum hanging out with some fellow guards when the monsters started appearing. All of his fellow guards are now dead, and the player will find their bodies horribly mutilated around the facility, as if they have undergone postmortem operations and experiments. Sergei is clearly intoxicated and is decidedly calm about everything, explaining that he s ready to let whatever happens happen. Sergei does tell the player where the radio is located in the building so that Torque can get the parts he needs. He also explains about the circuit breaker in the basement that the player can use to turn on the lights in the building, and adds that he ll be thankful if the player can turn it on so he can listen to his record player again. He s certainly not going to risk his life to go turn it on himself, though.

As the player navigates the asylum, Killjoy repeatedly appears in a strange projected form, taunting the player from afar. Once the player has recovered the parts he needs from the radio, the player is lured into a final confrontation with Killjoy, who speaks to Torque and claims that he knows about the player s condition (the blackouts), and suggests he can possibly cure him. Once the player smashes all of Killjoy s projectors, he is defeated, and the player is finally able to leave the asylum. It is impossible to return to the prison through the quarry, so Torque has to go back via the beach .

On the way to the beach, the player travels through a large expanse of woods. Along the way, he may discover the somewhat hidden location where the island s natives were massacred 500 years ago. In the woods the player will meet Clem, an intelligent and well-read prisoner who had been planning an escape for months and who complains that the appearance of the creatures has ruined everything. Clem knows of a way the player can get back into the prison, through the escape tunnel he dug, which terminates on the beach. Clem has planned a way of getting himself off of the island via a raft he constructed out of various pieces of junk from the prison. But Clem cannot go down to the beach and use it because of the horrific monsters that are lurking there. If the player will help him, Clem will gladly show the player the location of the escape tunnel as well as some other secrets.

On the beach the player finds the wreckage of the slave ship that crashed on the island in the 18th century. An old rickety set of stairs used to lead up off the beach to the prison, but they collapsed in the earthquake. From the beach the player can once again see the lighthouse on the eastern side of the island, but now its light has gone out. Clem shows the player the escape tunnel, which will get him into the prison s abandoned basement. The player will need to defend Clem while he gets his raft ready to go, and if the player is successful, he will watch Clem float out to sea.

Navigating through the narrow escape tunnel dug by Clem while fleeing from a swarm of rats, the player comes up in the abandoned basement of the prison. There he discovers that some of the corpses of executed prisoners have been preserved in strange glass cases. The player finally emerges from the basement back in the death house, arriving in the electric chair room. Suddenly the player is trapped inside and must fight the bizarre boss creature, Horace. Defeating him by shutting off his power, a fire erupts in the death house, and the player is forced to flee to the second story and death row, where he must return to his original cell.

In his cell, Torque finds a stack of bodies, one for each of the innocent humans he has killed in the game up to this point. Also on the wall is a crayon drawing of the Dark Side creature Torque becomes when he blacks out. The drawing is labeled, T, age 5 and has the word Bad Man scrawled under it. Also in the cell is a medical report signed by Doctor Killjoy that diagnoses Torque s condition, explaining, in obtuse medical jargon, what happens to Torque when he blacks out.

Avoiding the fire, Torque makes his way back out of the death house, and can now return to the guard tower containing Luther and the radio. On returning to the room where he left him, however, Torque finds that Luther has been killed while defending the radio from a Cartwheeler. The player is still able to use the parts he got from the asylum to get the radio to work and make contact with the outside world. A Coast Guard ship responds, saying they can t reach the island because their computers are down and, with the lighthouse out, it is too foggy for them to navigate into the harbor. If Torque can get the lighthouse working again, however, they will be able to attempt it.

Navigating his way out of the prison, Torque must set a large bus rolling down an incline to smash through the main prison gate. Once open, Torque can head toward the lighthouse, following the road that leads to the drawbridge to the eastern side of Carnate. Swarming with enemies, the player must battle them and then jump across the partially open drawbridge without falling into the chasm below.

On the east side, the player travels for a bit before he comes up to a World War II fort, which has been abandoned for many years but is still structurally intact. Here the player may find the wreckage of a crashed Nazi plane and the location where a paranoid colonel executed all of his German-American troops during the war. The player comes across a machine gun nest with a large number of dead creatures surrounding it, indicating that someone has recently used the gun to defend themselves . As the player explores the fort, a human suddenly shows himself, screaming for help: Jimmy, a young prisoner who has used his wits and a good amount of luck to survive the monsters onslaught. But Jimmy has sustained a serious head wound and blood is covering his eyes, preventing him from being able to see. Jimmy says he knows there is an infirmary in the basement, and if the player can get him down there, he ll be able to bandage himself up. The player will be able to lead Jimmy down to the basement where he will patch himself up. With Jimmy able to see again, the young prisoner helps Torque get to the natural cave system, which leads to the lighthouse.

The cave system leads the player into the basement of the lighthouse, where the player will be forced to battle strange gaseous creature Hermes, defeating him by turning on a fan, which blows his gaseous form into an old coal furnace that the player must then quickly shut and ignite . With Hermes defeated the player can progress up into the lighthouse itself. Here the player will see that the generator that powers it has been damaged by the monsters and that it will need new spark plugs to become functional again.

Traveling to the makeshift town where the guards families lived, the player at first finds it oddly devoid of creatures, instead seeing a swarm of little girls come running out and asking him strange questions. Suddenly these girls burst into flame and reveal themselves to be the dangerous Inferna creatures. Subsequently the player meets Ernesto, a guard from the prison who, immediately after the monsters arrived, ran to the town to check on his wife and child, only to find them dead. Now he is angry , feels his life is no longer worth living, and, armed with a machine gun, will help the player battle whatever creatures they find. On the south edge of the town the player finds the site where witch trials were conducted in the late 18th century, with the resulting witches being burned alive.

While battling the neverending waves of Infernas that populate the town, the player will find the spark plugs he needs scattered in various places, such as in a car, in a lawn mower, and in the small general store that served the town, with Ernesto pointing out places the player might look for them. With enough spark plugs, the player attempts to return to the lighthouse, but finds he cannot go the way he came since an avalanche has mysteriously collapsed on the road. Ernesto indicates that the only other way back to the lighthouse is through a hidden cave system, which leads into the sizable basement of the lighthouse.

Once back in the lighthouse, Torque is able to use the spark plugs in the generator, move it into position, and get the lighthouse turned on again. He must then crank up the lighthouse mirror and align its bulb before the Coast Guard informs him via a radio that they are sending a ship in and that Torque should head down to the docks to meet them.

On the docks, the player hears a number of strange voices, saying things like Torque, you re one of us, We brought you here to meet us, and Join us. These voices represent the collective evil presence of the island, a force which has been causing horrific acts to take place here for hundreds of years. As Torque hears the voices coming from all sides, The Black One shows up and the player must battle him.

With The Black One defeated, the player s final flashback is shown to him, revealingthe nature of his crime, which changes depending on how the player treated the friendly NPCs he encountered throughout the game. During the flashback, the player hears more of the voices who, in the good ending, say that Torque is not who they thought at all, while in the bad ending they point out We told you you were one of us.... With the flashback concluded, for the good and middle endings, a Coast Guard skiff arrives and Torque gets on it to leave the island. For the bad ending, Torque is seen transforming into a huge version of his beast form, and then walking back onto the island to live among the other monsters.


At five distinct points in the game, the player will have a flashback to the events surrounding the crime that landed him on death row. These flashbacks will be as jarring to the player as they are to Torque, suddenly ripping him out of the gameplay as he slowly remembers the details of this traumatic event. The first four will be generalized to all of the multiple versions of the crime and will all be quite short (three seconds at most), while the fifth and final flashback, which he sees at the end of the game, is significantly longer (though still fast paced) and shows what Torque actually did and reveals whether he is innocent or guilty. All flashbacks take place through a first-person view, representing what Torque sees.

  • First Flashback: The player sees a closeup Malcolm drowned in a tub of water, floating slowly beneath the surface. His lips are blue and his eyes are wide open in disbelief.

  • Second Flashback: The player sees Cory dead on the sidewalk outside Torque s fourth-story apartment in Baltimore, obviously having been killed from the fall. Cory s limbs are bent in obviously incorrect ways and his body has been slightly smashed on the sidewalk, a pool of blood having formed around the body.

  • Third Flashback: The player sees a closeup of Carmen s face, her eyes wide open in a death stare, her expression one of shock , a copious amount of thick blood pouring out of her skull through her braided hair.

  • Fourth Flashback: We see through Torque s eyes and he opens the door to his apartment, speaking, Carmen, are you here?

  • Fifth: Torque s crime is revealed when the player sees one of three flashbacks, depending on his actions in the game.

    • Positive : Torque walks into his apartment, looking for his ex-wife and children. He first finds Carmen in the bedroom, dead on the floor. We hear him exclaim, Carmen, oh my god! He turns and questions, Boys, where are you? In the bathroom he sees Malcolm drowned in the bathtub, and we hear him scream, No! Cory, where are you? Now in Cory s bedroom, we see the window is open with the curtains being blown in by the wind outside. Looking out through the window we see Cory dead on the sidewalk below. Torque speaks, Who did this? Who? Why? Suddenly Torque hears a sound behind him and turns around to see two darkly dressed males run out the door of his apartment. He chases after them to the stairs that lead up to his apartment, but they are gone.

    • Neutral : We see Carmen arguing with Torque in Torque s bedroom: I have the money now, I want the boys up in New York with me. We hear Torque shout back: You re just trying to takemy boys from me! Where were you for those three years, Torque? How many times can I tell you that.... Then we see Torque s fist swing out and hit Carmen on the jaw, sending her flying to the ground. On the way down she hits her head on the bed frame, creating a large gash in her skull. She falls , dead, on the ground. We hear Torque speaking: Carmen? Carmen? What have I done? The camera turns to look at the door of the room where Cory is standing, anger visible in his eyes and his stance. He turns to run out of the room, and the camera follows him. First we see him run into the bathroom and drown his brother, Malcolm, in the tub. Then we follow as Cory runs into his own bedroom, opens the window, steps up onto the windowsill, and throw himself out onto the pavement below. We hear Torque screaming and weeping: Cory! Malcolm! What have I done?

    • Negative : We follow from Torque s point of view as he enters his apartment. Carmen is there in his bedroom, smiling at him. Torque gets close to her and then savagely starts pummeling her with his fists. She falls to the ground and he smashes her skull against the frame of the bed. Soon we see that she is not moving and is apparently dead. We hear Torque breathing heavily over her dead body for a second. Then, keeping with Torque s POV, we go into the bathroom and Malcolm looks at him from the tub, saying: Daddy, what s happening? Torque takes his hand and shoves his son s head under the water. Bubbles flow out of his mouth as his body writhes and, shortly, Malcolm is dead. Now Cory is in the bathroom, asking, What s going on, what s happening? Torque grabs Cory under his arm and carries him into the child s bedroom where he opens the window with his free hand and hurls him out to the pavement below. We see Torque breathing heavily for a few seconds, looking out the window at his dead son.


The following sections provide reasonably detailed accounts of the back-stories of some of the elements in the game. These are included here to give the places and people a history so that they will be consistently and compellingly portrayed in the game, though the specific details of these accounts will never be fully revealed to the player.

Carnate s History

Situated several miles off the mid-Atlantic coast, Carnate is an island that has been a home to evil for centuries. People who have come to the island have found themselves committing acts of brutality and cruelty beyond what they would have done elsewhere. The precise nature of this evil is never explained in the game.

In 1681, a small agrarian community of puritanical settlers is living on the island. In this small village, a nine-year-old girl decides to seek revenge against her strict parents and others who have upset her by proclaiming them witches. She enlists two friends as part of the scheme, which ends up leading to the burning alive of 11 witches as the town becomes hysterical over the satanic forces in their midst. Fearing being caught, the girls flee to the woods and, as the concluding act of their pact together, fling themselves off a cliff into the ocean.

In 1732, a slave ship sailing from Africa ran aground on the northern end of the island. Few were injured in the crash. However, the slave traders were frightened to let the slaves out of the holds, since they might join together and revolt against the traders. Instead the slave traders left the slaves trapped in the ship, where they slowly starved to death and were eaten alive by the rats. The slave traders themselves were never able to make it off the island alive.

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Torque s History

Torque is an extremely tough and street smart individual who, when in the company of strangers, puts up an outward facade of extreme confidence, strength, and intimidation . Torque developed this persona over the course of his life as a protective shield against the harsh world he grew up in. When around the people he is friendly with, however, Torque reveals his softer side, and can be quite affectionate, gentle, and loving. Torque primarily reveals this side of himself when with his children, wife, and some of his close friends.

When Torque was two years old he was abandoned and ended up a ward of the state. As a result he has no memory of his real parents and was raised in a group home in inner-city Philadelphia. Life in the group home was far from pleasant and certainly not a loving environment, and Torque felt very much alone in the world and soon learned that he would have to be responsible for bettering his own life, because no one else would help him. Torque always had a fierce temper and was a bit prone to violent outbursts. At a young age he drew a picture of a monstrous creature that, though he did not realize it, represented his dark side. Torque would continue to have visions of this creature throughout his life.

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Friendly NPCs

Over the course of the game, Torque meets six NPCs who will help him, either by pointing out solutions to puzzles or by actually joining him in combat against the monsters. These NPCs will speak more dialog than the other NPCs, and will stay alive for a good amount of time, if not for the rest of the game, assuming the player doesn t kill them himself. As with the Back-story section above, not all of the information about these NPCs will necessarily be communicated to the player. Suggested lines of dialog contained in this section are intended as a guide, and are not necessarily representative of the final dialog to be used in the game.


Dallas is an African-American prisoner from one of the rougher neighborhoods of Baltimore. He exudes bravado and confidence, and takes pride in the neighborhood he grew up in and the friends he keeps. While putting up the front of being extremely tough around men, Dallas is a great lover of women, being tender and caring around females, always eager to please them. While on the outside, Dallas slept with as many of them as would have him, with his good looks and charming personality making him quite a success as a ladies man. In Abbott, however, Dallas had to find another outlet for his sexual energies, and ended up in a consensual sexual relationship with a large Caucasian male inmate, Byron. Coming across Byron s corpse will upset Dallas significantly, though he is quickly able to compose himself. Though obviously intelligent, Dallas did not receive much of an education and betrays this in his speech. Dallas also presents the first bogus theory about where the monstrous creatures come from, suggesting that the government has been conducting medical experiments on prisoners and that they have now gone awry: I heard the government s been conducting experiments on us inmates, next phase of MK-Ultra if you can believe that shit.

Dallas actually was friends with Torque from a previous stint the two of them did back at the Eastern Correctional Institution in Maryland. Dallas knows what an intimidating and forceful person Torque can be, yet respects him for his inner strength and integrity. Once Dallas finds Torque, he immediately realizes that Torque is the one man who can help him stay alive with all of the monsters around. The player s goal is to keep Dallas alive as long as possible, which is not an easy feat since Dallas is completely unarmed and thereby incapable of defending himself. He is familiar with many areas of the prison and will be able to warn the player of impending threats, thus rewarding the player for keeping him alive.


Luther is a large guard with a heavily muscle-bound physique who is extremely tough and physically intimidating. A dark- skinned African-American originally from Northeast Washington, D.C., Luther has an extremely deep voice, though he speaks quietly and with a slight stutter. Luther has a theory about what is happening on the island but is fairly vague about it. Torque will hear him mutter various biblical references and speak of the end times.

When the player comes across Luther in the prison s guard tower, Luther has been severely traumatized by witnessing the appearance of the horrific monsters that have caused so much carnage around the prison. Luther is in a state of shock and is deathly afraid of everything he encounters, including the player. The player will have to chase after Luther and then try to talk to him for him to calm down. Once calm, Luther can be set off again by anything, such as the appearance of another monster or even the player firing his weapon, causing him to run screaming in terror once more. Once calm, however, Luther is extremely cogent and leads them to the radio room, explaining to Torque that in order to get the radio working, he must collect parts from the asylum. Unfortunately, when the player returns to the radio room significantly later, he finds that Luther has been hideously slaughtered by a Cartwheeler creature. The player finds Luther dead with a Cartwheeler s blades sticking through him, though the Cartwheeler has apparently been killed by a fire axe that Luther had obtained, which is buried in its body. It appears that Luther finally stopped being afraid of the monsters and, in his final action, defended the radio from the Cartwheeler s attempt to destroy it.


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Game Design Theory and Practice
Game Design: Theory and Practice (2nd Edition) (Wordware Game Developers Library)
ISBN: 1556229127
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2005
Pages: 189 © 2008-2017.
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