Now this would have to be one of the most painful reviews I have written in recent times…
No, Torment: Tides of Numenera is a fantastic game. A game I have been waiting forever for, since I backed it on Kickstarter a couple of years ago.
The problem is I tried to chop off my finger recently and have just had the stitches out, and typing on a keyboard kind of hurts!
So let me take you through the world of Torment, while going through a bit of torment myself.
Let me just say up front, Torment: Tides of Numenera won’t be for everyone. Complex story lines, just as complex decisions and some quite lengthy dialogs to read, with a fairly high level vocabulary used. But don’t let this put you off, any time invested into the world of Torment will reward you tenfold.
Seriously interesting characters lead you of on a journey of discovery after you plummet from the sky, just who are you? Decisions and choices are very difficult with no obvious right and wrong, or so it seems. Choosing one path over another my seem the right thing to do in a situation but the repercussions of that decision may end up haunting you further down your journey.
Fans of the original Planescape: Torment will find themselves in a familiar wonderland but with no ties to the Nameless One or even Morte. Without giving away too much of the story and fantastic discoveries you will make Torment has you in the body of the Last Castoff. A discarded body from the aptly named Changing God, a God who has discovered a form of immortality by moving to a new body as the old one passes its used by date.
Being a Castoff from this God does have some up sides though. Unfortunately the Changing God has made an enemy in the form of The Sorrow, which seeks to destroy the Changing God and all of his creations, which you now fall into the category of. So off you go with anyone who is willing to join you to save your skin.
Starting off with three classes to choose from there is a fair bit of room to change your play style as you go and in most cases you can even completely avoid combat with wise dialogue choices, if you want too. As you would expect from a traditional RPG the skill tree and inventory system is in depth and nicely detailed with a variety of traditional weapons and more obscure powers and traits.
Non Player Characters that join you can affect your choices or even leave your party if they don’t like your style. And if you want you can even get rid of them and go solo. Torment really is a game of consequences. Everything you do will shift the Tides of Numenera, a set of forces which entwine everything in the world, sort of like the good, chaotic, lawful, evil role of traditional Dungeons and Dragons. Lean too far one way and who knows what might happen?
Visually Torment won’t impress all the graphics whores out there but this game isn’t about the visuals. Even if they are pretty damn good for and isometric RPG. Many of the wonderfully imagined areas just look stunning. As usual this style of game doesn’t fit perfectly with a controller but everything is more than manageable. Anyone who has played Wasteland 2 or Divinity: Original Sin will have no problem, then again, fan’s of those two titles will already have Torment, I’d put money on it.
As I mentioned, Torment: Tides of Numenera won’t be for everyone but it is quality gaming, that is for sure. Fans of Baldurs’ Gate, Arcanum, and Planescape should add this to their no-brainer list while anyone who claims to be a gamer of any type should give a purchase of Torment very serious consideration indeed. Hovering backwards and forwards over two dialogue choices for five minutes has never been more fun or engrossing.
Top notch gaming, here’s hoping for many more.