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A story-driven CRPG set in the world of Monte Cook's Numenera.  We are deeply appreciative to all of you who made this possible.
A story-driven CRPG set in the world of Monte Cook's Numenera.  We are deeply appreciative to all of you who made this possible.
You can continue to support Torment by visiting tormentrpg.com.
A story-driven CRPG set in the world of Monte Cook's Numenera. We are deeply appreciative to all of you who made this possible. You can continue to support Torment by visiting tormentrpg.com.
74,405 backers pledged $4,188,927 to help bring this project to life.

Updated Our Journal (64): Console Copies for Backers – We Need Your Input!

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Hello Exiles,

With the game's release right around the corner (Feb. 28), every day brings something exciting and new. Today we have something to share that we think looks amazing. Our friends at Techland created a story trailer that covers the events leading up to the game: the backstory behind Torment, brought to life in animated format (needless to say, minor spoiler warning).

In addition to being a great intro to Torment for newcomers, we also think it's just a pretty cool video outright. But that's not the main reason we're doing this update...

Console Copies for Backers?

**If you’re not interested in consoles, skip this section**

On February 28, you can get your digital PC copies of the game through our backer site. If you ordered physical goods, Techland is handling the distribution. In addition, they’ve told us that you’ll receive your physical copies very close to release! 

As you may recall, Techland also funded work on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions of the game. Since that announcement, one of the top questions we’ve received is "can backers get console copies as well?” We’ve been exploring the possibilities of making this a reality for you, and would like to offer them... but we’ll need your help.

The console manufacturers charge us for generating console game codes – a cost per code, but also with a minimum order size. While we’re not looking to make a profit, the expense is not trivial for us. Therefore, if the demand is there, we'd need to ask any backers who want a digital console copy to make an additional 1,800 point ($18) pledge on our backer site. You would get both the original PC copy, plus a digital console copy of your choice. This is not unlike how we did things for Wasteland 3.

However, because there’s a minimum order size, we also need to make sure there’s enough interest from our backers before can confirm it. If there is, we’ll be happy to offer copies, but if the demand is not there, we won’t be able to do a small order. As well, there is a time limit – we can only provide console copies to you up to the release date of February 28th, so if you want one as an add-on, please be sure to let us know as soon as possible.

 

So, how do you let us know you want a console copy? We’ve added a page to the Torment backer web site specifically for console code requests. Log in, and tell us on that page if you want a PS4 or Xbox One copy. If we get enough interest, we'll email everyone who signed up and let you all pledge for the $18 console add-on prior to the 28th!

Beautiful Desolation

Last, but not least, as lovers of beautifully hand-crafted isometric games, we'd be doing you all a disservice if we didn't give a nod to Beautiful Desolation.

 

This one is a post-apocalyptic adventure game set in Africa, made by the team behind the gorgeously horrible STASIS. They also worked with us to produce some of the early Wasteland 3 prototype work we’ve been showing over the last few months. The Bischoff brothers are not only excellent game developers, but also really good guys, so head over to their campaign and support them!

Chris Keenan
VP of Development

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Updated Our Journal (63): A Look Back on Development

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tl;dr: Colin talks about Torment's development and the future; Monte Cook's novella now available; new Torment media

Hello Exiles,

Colin here. It's crazy to think that it's just about a month from Torment's release date. To start, we wanted to give you a taste of some of the game's quests in this interactive trailer. Hosted by, well, me, there's some early game side-quest spoilers, but it'll give you a taste of what the game has to offer if you haven't already jumped into the early access version.

 You'll want to watch this on a desktop and have annotations turned on for the most interactivity!

A Look Back on Development

As our release date nears, we decided to look back on the game's development, to talk about where we are, how far we've come, and how we move forward from here.

When we set out to make Torment: Tides of Numenera, our vision was to make a thematic successor to Planescape: Torment. We’d explore a new setting, and use a new core question to explore a similar vein of philosophical thought. I am proud to say that the response from you, our backers, has been incredibly positive. I’ve told this story before, but it bears repeating: when Brian asked me to be the creative lead for Torment, I had to take some time to think about it, and I almost turned down the opportunity. I knew what Planescape: Torment meant to people, after all. For people to say that we have succeeded in creating a tonal and thematic successor is… well, it’s overwhelming, and I – WE – are grateful for the opportunity.

As with any creative work, game development is an iterative and uncertain process. When we over-funded at a higher level than we could ever have expected, that led to an increase in scope and size of the game accordingly. We went from one major city hub to two. We added new companions, more locations such as the Ascension, the Castoff's Labyrinth, new cults like the Dendra O'hur, and more. We added Meres to the game, whole text-based mini-stories that themselves have their own reactivity and many branching paths, and even more surprises to find. We have an expanded soundtrack that's longer than Planescape: Torment's by a decent margin, and a universe rich enough to fill multiple novellas.

 

During the Kickstarter, we had to move fast. We had to make decisions and add content on the fly. The problem is, as with any plan, some of those decisions looked great on paper but didn’t survive contact with reality. Building a game is not a straight line from start to finish. It’s not as simple as creating a design document, implementing it, and shipping it. It’s an endlessly iterative process, one where ideas must be thought up, discussed, prototyped, iterated on again, and tested in game. The cycle repeats frequently. Sometimes, these ideas don’t work out the way you intended or just don’t feel like they fit properly in the theme of the game. A lesson we've taken away since the Kickstarter campaign is to avoid being too specific in detailing early designs, locations, and characters – it's fun and exciting at the time for us and you, but...

Well, what can change the nature of a game? This is one (non-canonical) answer: Creating it. For instance, the story we launched with, while still being true to the vision of the game, has undergone at least seven major revisions.

Some of our players and community members recently pointed out that they noticed that some features had changed from what we initially detailed. The one that has come up the most is the companion roster. The early access version doesn't feature the companion list we initially had our sights on. This is true: for the release version, there will be six. While we laid the groundwork for more, while building the game we realized that we had to make a tradeoff between companions with depth, or a larger amount. We chose to focus on the added richness and personality that you expect with a smaller group. The game’s scope increased considerably over what we originally set out to build, and we underestimated the amount of time and iteration it would take to make our companions as reactive and branching as they needed to be.

We didn't want these characters to end up with storylines that felt incomplete. We didn’t want to force them into the late game. Focusing on a smaller number gave us the opportunity to add more banter, more voice-over, and deeper storylines and outcomes for them.

Crafting is another stretch goal feature that we did some initial design on, but that work did not mesh well with the rest of the game's systems. Rather than adding an element that felt tacked-on (and worse, out of place for Torment), we repurposed those resources. We added more cyphers and artifacts to the game. We also added some other, more story-based elements to further flesh out equipment and items. That helped the items fit with the structure and style of the emerging game.

Some of you have been asking about the Oasis, an area we talked about during the campaign as our second major city. Though we fully intended that the Oasis would be our second city, story changes, plus our growing fascination with the Bloom, turned that location into our second major hub instead. In fact, the Bloom and surrounding areas are much larger than we originally discussed building for the Oasis. This didn't adversely affect the length of the game – we’re still delivering a second major hub, and the Oasis will still appear in a smaller form. We feel this was the right move for the game creatively. It meant we could focus on a setting that felt darker and more distinctly Torment, and it improved the pacing immeasurably.

Changes like these happen in the development of any game. Speaking for inXile, I can tell you that we always undertake them to deliver you a better experience. To do anything else would be doing you a disservice.

But our focus on the game led to a different disservice. Namely, our lack of communication. We have always been major proponents of openness during development, but we did not communicate these changes earlier, and we should have done so sooner. For this, you have the entire team’s sincerest apologies. Going forward both with Torment and our future games, we hope to increase our efforts in making sure that you know the status and future plans for inXile’s projects.

So, you might be asking, what’s up after Torment releases next month? Fortunately, we're in the era of internet connections and ongoing post-release support. We still have plenty of ideas for Torment! We'll be thinking about ways we can restore some of the remaining ideas that work in the game. Of course, as our backers who helped make the game happen, any of these updates – such as DLCs and expansions – will be yours free of charge. This goes for both Kickstarter backers and those who backed through our website.

Italian Localization

One other topic: the Italian localization. When we set out to create Torment, our planned size was significantly smaller. Torment in its final form grew to a much bigger, deeper RPG, and has over 1.2 million words. When we chose our planned localizations for the game, that word count and expanded scope for the game didn't exist yet. Unfortunately, it turns out that localization a game script of such a magnitude to a good standard of quality is extremely costly.

With Wasteland 2, we could turn to many of our backers, who volunteered their time and talent to help build the game's localization. With Torment, we wanted to pursue professional localization efforts. Unfortunately, during this process, we made the difficult decision to drop support for Italian - both our backer numbers and the sales of our prior RPGs in Italy meant it was unlikely we'd be able to field the very high costs.

We’re looking into ways to bring you Italian in a post-release capacity, such as community translations. The producers will keep you informed on that if we have any news on that. Regardless, we understand that some of our Italian fans backed the game hoping to play that version. If you are an Italian backer and unable to play the game in English, and you would like a pledge refund, please contact us at our customer support page.

Monte Cook's Novella

As we mentioned above, we have seven novellas being created for Torment, many of them stretch goals. With the game so close to release, it's only fitting that Monte Cook's novella is now ready for you to enjoy. Titled Palimpsest, this one does not fall in the initial "From the Depths" series, but still ties into the game lore and themes. Here's the summary from Monte himself:

Varden works with the numenera, the strange relics left over from the world's prior civilizations. Always seeking new finds, Varden has recently found something quite extraordinary that he calls the Arthenac. This discovery is the source of incredible energies, enough to power a whole city. Even though he can't stay at the discovery site, he knows that he can't just leave the Arthenac unprotected. So he quickly assembles an automaton from some parts that he's gathered to watch over it.

It doesn't take long for the automaton to show that she's far more than he suspected, however-she's intelligent, and has free will. Varden names her Palimpsest. Over the years, Varden visits his "daughter" Palim from time to time, each time discovering that she's grown in personality and understanding. Meanwhile, Palim gains a far greater awareness of the Arthenac and its true nature.

Varden's early efforts to learn more about the Arthenac and what he can do with it trigger events that impact both he and Palim later in their lives. The story that unfolds over decades leads to a confrontation with a power-hungry castoff of the Changing God and the ties that bind parent and child-creator and creation-together no matter how much time has passed.

If your reward level included Monte's novella, you can find it on your Rewards page – just click your "Downloads" button.

Media & Press

In the lead-up to release there's also been a huge number of new videos, previews, and more hitting the web. We wanted to share a taste of these with you.

First, we have another trailer, this one focusing on our combat and character systems. You can see it below.

Next, I was able to meet with Angry Joe and show off the game. You can see the full half-hour stream of the Bloom, but keep in mind that there are some later-game area spoilers here.

Above, I alluded to the reception of the game being positive, and that's also been echoed in our experiences with the press. We recently held events both in North America as well as Europe, and we got a chance to share the game. Virtually all of them came away with good impressions, whether that was Eurogamer, PC World, IGN, PC Gamer, Polygon, or the many more than what I'm able to list here.

And finally, if you're in London on the weekend of 18-19 February, we'll have Torment: Tides of Numenera playable at the PC Gamer Weekender in Olympia. You can read more in our release here, or read more about the PC Gamer Weekender here.

Shout-Outs

There are a few more cool things happening we wanted to share with you as well. First, the theatrical cut of Numenera: Strand short film is now available for free.

Brought to you by Monte Cook Games and Valdes/Eriksdotter, Numenera: Strand is a captivating introduction to the Numenera universe, so we highly recommend you take a look if you haven't yet seen it.

 

We'd also like to take a moment to mention Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire, by Obsidian Entertainment, whose crowdfunding campaign just launched on Fig. As many of you are well aware, Torment is built on some of the technology behind the first Pillars of Eternity, and so shares some common DNA with it. We're looking forward to it quite a bit, as it looks like it's shaping up to be yet another rich, engrossing CRPG.

Colin McComb,
Creative Lead

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Updated Our Journal (62): Tidal Surge Update for Early Access

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tl;dr: Our last big update before release is here!

Greetings Exiles!

Hot on the heels of our release date announcement (it's February 28th, 2017 in case you missed it!), we're pleased to announce our last big beta update for the Steam Early Access version of Torment on Windows before the final game is out. In celebration of this last stretch towards release, we're calling it the Tidal Surge Update!

We know many of you have been waiting for this update, and now we're very happy to be able to deliver a much-improved version of Torment for you to enjoy. Like previous builds, this one will allow you to play the game's first major chunk, taking you through Sagus Cliffs and some parts of the Castoff's Labyrinth – the remaining content will come with the final game, as we don't want to spoil everything, after all!

Update Notes

The Tidal Surge Update includes literally thousands of changes from the last version. There's simply far too many to show you as we'd probably start to approach the word count of the entire game just in version notes, but the highlight features are:

  • Voice-acting has been added to key characters and conversations.
  • Huge balance improvements across combat, loot and economy.
  • Tweaks and adjustments to character stats, such as armor and resistances.
  • Many interface art and functionality improvements, fixes and other refinements.
  • Improvements to visual and sound effects, especially combat abilities.
  • Reworked early-game crisis flow.
  • Game settings such as key rebinding and text size are now available.
  • Added tutorials and other helpers (optional).
  • Hundreds of bug fixes and performance optimizations.

For a list of known issues with this build, please see this thread.

We still have a bit of time left on the game, so we encourage you to check out our forums and let us know of any bugs or issues you run into, as well as for your general feedback!

News Time!

We also have a few bits of news to share as we near the end of 2016. First up, creative lead Colin McComb held a live Q&A session from Techland's offices in Poland. You can watch the full stream here, where he answered as many questions as we could fit in!

Next, you might remember a couple of updates ago we showed you our trailers for the Glaive and Nano types. The final one, for the Jack, is now available, and you can view it right here to complete the trio.

Last, we wanted to let you know that inXile CEO Brian Fargo will appear on Unlocked: The World of Games, Revealed, a new documentary series that dives deep into the world of gaming's biggest icons, celebrities, consumers and experts across all fields. You can see a teaser featuring Brian above, and if you are interested, you can take a closer look at the show over here.

Until next time,
Thomas Beekers

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Updated Our Journal (61): Release Date!

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Hello Exiles,

Today's update is a little on the short side, but I think you'll forgive us this time…

We are extremely excited to announce that Torment: Tides of Numenera will be releasing February 28th, 2017! It has been a long journey, and without your help on Kickstarter it would never have happened. We could not be happier to be delivering a successor to the Torment name and legacy, and we look forward to you enjoying it early next year.

When the game releases, those of you who already have your Steam keys redeemed for the beta version of the game will auto-update to the final build, and those of you who are planning to enjoy the game DRM-free from GOG will be able to as soon as that version is ready. We will also make a key exchange option available around that time for those of you who want to deactivate your Steam key and switch to GOG. At that point, most of the remaining digital rewards will also be made available to you.

For those of you with physical goods, we'll be prompting you to confirm your final shipping information in the near future. We do not have an exact shipping timeline for those goods just yet, but Techland is hard at work getting them ready for you as soon as possible. Please be sure to keep us advised of any changes by updating your shipping details on the Torment backer web site!

Rest assured that while we have our release date, that doesn't mean our work is quite done yet. We'll be using our remaining time to polish the game for you up to the last possible moment. And of course, once we get closer to release we'll have more news to share with you as well.

Chris Keenan,
VP of Development

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Updated Our Journal (60): Rolling Towards Release, New Novellas & Trailers

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tl;dr: Torment in the home stretch, new novellas released for backers, and new Type trailers to watch.

Hello Exiles,

Eric Daily here! I'm the producer on Torment, coordinating the team and managing day-to-day affairs. I've been around since the Wasteland 2 days, but they have now decided to let me out of my cage in time for Thanksgiving so I can bring you an update on where we're at!

But first, we have a new series of trailers rolling out from Techland, which show off our character types/classes (minor spoilers for locations and abilities). Here's the Nano:

And here's the Glaive:

The final video in the series will be coming soon. Keep your eyes on our YouTube channel or social feeds for that one.

Path to Gold

Phew! It's been a busy month. The Torment team has been hustling hard to get the game polished for release. The game is nearly ready, which means we're now doing all that "boring" stuff that gets Torment ready for you to play.

What does that include? Well, Jeremy, Evan and other members of the design team have been working away on balancing to make sure our Crisis encounters are as entertaining as can be, and that things like loot distribution, economy and character progression are playing well. A lot of number tweaking! Those on the writing and area design side have been playing through the game and fixing any remaining quest, story and content issues. Our engineers Steve, Jesse, Dan and more have been hammering hard on performance optimization and pesky bugs to make sure everything runs better, faster, stronger. Meanwhile, we've got our artists, scripters and more devoted to further polish and cleaning up animations, character rigs, and textures.

Fortunately, things are looking really good, so we’ve been able to divert more folk’s time toward playing the game, finding bugs, identifying balance and progression issues, and tying up any loose ends in quests. It might sound like a strange thing to say, but sometimes for developers, simply finding the time to sit back and enjoy our own games is a luxury, so we’ve been doing that too.

We also wouldn't be complete rounding up our recent progress without giving another shout-out to the QA teams at Testronic and Techland, plus our external localization partners. Those teams have all been putting in huge amounts of hours and Torment is very much improved thanks to them.

All of this work is bringing us closer and closer to a release-to-manufacturing build of the game. We've been directing our efforts towards that milestone, and when that happens, it will mean Torment is effectively a finished, complete game we can all be proud of. You can rest assured we'll be hammering away as long as we can to give you the best possible experience upon release early next year.

Last, in the previous update we hinted that we'll have a new beta update for Torment coming, and that's still the plan. This will have many of the refinements we've mentioned above, plus new features like the ability to switch between mouse/keyboard and controller versions of the interface. We'll keep you all posted!

Reward and Pledge Finalization Reminder

It's a point of some pride and a little surprise that our pledge claim rates for Torment are extremely high – according to our stats, nearly 95% of you have set up accounts with us on our backer web site and are ready to claim your rewards come release. Of course, we wish those numbers could be 100%, so we'd like to give a reminder on setting up your Torment backer account!

Those of you who backed the game here on Kickstarter at a physical pledge level, but never set up a Torment backer account – your time is running out! With Torment releasing early next year, we need to get your rewards as well as your up to date shipping addresses on file so that we have the right reward quantities for manufacturing, as well as the correct address to actually send those rewards to.

Techland has been taking point on our media and trailers (like the Nano video above), as well as backer goods, working to ensure a very high level of quality and respect for the Torment and Numenera source material and community. We've been impressed with it and are looking forward to letting you get your hands on those rewards.

So, if you backed at a level that includes a boxed copy, please make sure you create a backer account if you don't yet have one. And even if you do have a backer account with us, it would be a good idea for you to visit your rewards page just to make sure your shipping details are correct. A little diligence now means we'll be able to ensure things go more smoothly when rewards are ready to ship!

Novellas Galore!

Today we are also thrilled to release not one, but two brand-new rewards. Our From the Depths series comes to a close today with the Blue Tide novella, "The Last Days of Archopalasia" by Tony Evans, as well as the Silver Tide novella, "The Four Lessons of the Great Chila (As Told To, and Chronicled by the Manipulative Speck)" by Mur Lafferty. Both are now available for applicable backers through our backer site.

Both are excellent reads. Here are the summaries of both of them to whet your appetites:

From the Depths: Blue by Tony Evans

Reen Gnoseus needs a miracle.

His wife Kyria is dying, and though Reen is a brilliant scientist, he knows of no cure for her disease. Then, a stranger tells Reen of a lost city of wonders, Archopalasia, where any illness can be cured.

Desperate, Reen and Kyria set off across a poisoned wasteland in a race against time - and win. The city is there, and Kyria is cured with the push of a button. Even better, she is now apparently immortal, and wants Reen to be immortal too.

But at what cost? Are the changes Reen sees in Kyria's personality just tricks of his mind, or is something more sinister going on? What is the secret of Archopalasia?

From the Depths: Silver by Mur Lafferty

No one knew her family. No one remembered their deaths. Chila vowed that someday, everyone would remember her.

Chila and her brother are homeless orphans in the vertical slums of Sagus Cliffs, stealing and scamming to survive, but Chila dreams of bigger things, and vows to turn those dream into reality, no matter what the cost. Using chutzpah and trickery to sell herself as a hero to her impoverished neighbors, she makes a play for the whole city, only to find out how savagely those in power will fight to keep it.

Soon she is in a far worse place than where she began, but her defeat has only made her stronger, and even more determined to climb to the top.

-----

To dive in, you can visit your Torment rewards page and click the "Downloads" button under your reward package containing them.

That brings the From the Depths series to a close, with all five of the different tidal novellas now available. But, you may remember we had a couple more novellas planned for release – one by Numenera creator Monte Cook, and another by Torment's creative lead Colin McComb. Those will be coming down the road, and we'll let you know when they are ready for you enjoy.

Tyranny Released

 

Last, it wouldn't be right if we didn't mention Tyranny, the newest title from Obsidian Entertainment. Tyranny is a party-based role-playing game set in a world dominated by Kyros the Overlord, a place where evil won. The game features tactical combat and plenty of choices and consequences. What's more, Tyranny is based on the same engine as Pillars of Eternity, and of course, Torment as well. So, if that all sounds good to you, be sure to have a look at the game on Steam or GOG.com!

Eric Daily
Producer

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