TorqueL is an unusual little physics-based puzzler that uses mechanics you won’t have played before. With very little introduction or background to the game, FullPowerSideAttack’s latest PlayStation release brings more Japanese intrigue to PS4 and PS Vita.
A minuscule pixel gentleman has been encased in a tiny cube and your job is to transport this little chap to the exit of each level, or in this case, chamber. The cube itself has a rather interesting way of traveling, as each side of the square can be individually extended causing sudden movement. With the little chap safely secured inside, you can hurl, roll and catapult him any which way you want. Using this unique form of transport can be challenging to say the least. It takes some working out as the control system can feel unnatural and fiddly. On route you’ll be squeezing through tight gaps, navigating moving platforms, and landing head first in pools of red lava if you’re not careful.
TorqueL is a handful. Its uncomplicated look and minimalist design makes the job of finding the exit manageable as you can’t see the whole chamber. A quick glimpse at the beginning displays the full view of what lies in wait for you, and it’s a case of overcoming each problem as you reach it.
The lava pools are your worst enemy, and boy do these infuriate. Be warned, you’ll have your sights set on home after treading so carefully thought-out, only to have your glory whipped from under your shoes, or in this case box, as an unexpected misfire lurches you forward into the dreaded red lava. Ouch, welcome to TorqueL.
The interesting way the soundtrack rolls out is decided by the actions buttons you select. Pressing and extending sides of the cube make for some nice atmospheric electronic tones, making TorqueL even more unique.
There are fifty Chambers to tackle and as you progress you pick up family members on the way. A fancy See-Through mode which allows certain areas of the screen to use the Vita back camera hardware is a novelty. Handy if you want to view your knees while playing or if you have the sudden urge to hold the Vita towards the cat, thus displaying a different background every time. Certainly not a deal breaker, and such extras only confirm just how unique TorqueL really is.
Fun and frustrating in the same breath, TorqueL is certainly a topsy turvy physics-based puzzler that suits the Vita well. Even with its unique mechanic being its forte, basic game design and game price may put off the average player.
Lizard rating 6/10