Torment: Tides of Numenera

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Torment: Tides of Numenera Places A Large Emphasis On Storytelling

As with its spiritual predecessor, Planescape: Torment, the gameplay of Torment: Tides of Numenera places a large emphasis on storytelling, which unfolds through a “rich, personal narrative”, and complex character interaction through the familiar dialog tree system. The player is able to select the gender of the protagonist, who will otherwise start the game as a “blank slate”, and may develop his or her skills and personality from their interactions with the world. The Numenera setting provides three base character classes: Glaive (warrior), Nano (wizard) and Jack (rogue). These classes can be further customized with a number of descriptors (such as “Tough” or “Mystical”) and foci, which allow the character to excel in a certain role or combat style.

Torment: Tides of Numenera uses the Unity engine to display the pre-rendered 2.5D isometric perspective environments. The tabletop ruleset of Monte Cook’s Numenera has been adapted to serve as the game’s rule mechanic, and its Ninth World setting is where the events of Torment: Tides of Numenera take place. The player experiences the game from the point of view of the Last Castoff, a human host that was once inhabited by a powerful being, but was suddenly abandoned without memory of prior events.

Instead of a classic alignment system acting as a character’s ethical and moral compass, Torment: Tides of Numenera uses “Tides” to represent the reactions a person inspires in their peers. Each Tide has a specific color and embodies a number of nuanced concepts that are associated with it. The composition of Tides a character has manipulated the most determines their Legacy, which roughly describes the way they have taken in life. Different Legacies may affect what bonuses and powers certain weapons and relics provide, as well as give a character special abilities and enhance certain skills.

The game was successfully crowd-funded through Kickstarter in the first six hours of the project’s launch in March 2013. At the campaign’s conclusion, Torment: Tides of Numenera had set the record for highest-funded video game on Kickstarter with over US$4 million pledged. The release date was initially set for December 2014, but was pushed back to February 2017.

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