The Suffering is a video game in the psychological horror genre. In this game, the player takes control of the character named Torque, who has been convicted of murder and sent to the Abbott State Penitentiary located on Carnate Island in Maryland. Torque claims he blacked out and has no memory of killing his ex-wife and two children. When he arrives at the facility, a massive earthquake ensues, releasing a horde of monsters upon the penitentiary. A broken cell door lets Torque escape, and during his journey to flee the island, he discovers that the monsters personify the different forms of execution the penitentiary has done.
Torque also meets the spirits of the island’s residents, and with their help, he discovers that he has the ability to transform into a monster himself. Players can also team up with other characters who can help Torque escape. The Suffering lets players control Torque from a first-person perspective while letting them shift between two camera angles. Players are given a wide array of weapons to use throughout the game, including Molotov cocktails, revolvers, and shivs. Torque’s morality is tested in various situations, and players can choose from being good by helping another character, being evil by killing, and having a neutral stance by being indifferent. There are three possible endings in the game.