The first thing to note is that Torment: Tides of Numeria is *NOT* an “official” sequel to Planescape: Torment. Planescape was very much a D&D game in its bones. You could see how the successes and failures you had were related to dice rolls on a d20 using rules that D&D adjacent folks were already familiar with. The whole fighter/thief/mage options available to you were character classes that you had indelibly etched in your brain from not only D&D but all of the places that D&D stole them from. Er, borrowed. Gave a tribute to.
However! Numeria absolutely *IS* a spiritual successor to Torment insofar as the strange experience of waking up in a magical and weird universe that seems to be vaguely decaying but decaying sustainably and you’re thrust in the middle of this weird and wonderful place remembering only fragments of a previous existence and, well, now you’ve got to figure out who you are, what you aren’t remembering, and try to fix whatever it is that you know you need to fix that is just eating at you (but you can’t remember what it was… just that it was the most important thing in the world).
The character creation is a delight, insofar as it uses a trick similar to the one found in Tyranny where it asks you “of the various things that you do remember… what *REALLY* happened?”
Like, when you defeated this particular enemy, did you use stealth and guile or did you use brute force or did you turn it into a battle of wits that you went on to win handily?
And then, after answering a short series of questions dealing with what happened right before you blacked out, you’re shown various multitudes of yourself in a mirror and asked which of these multitudes is the most like you?
And then you fine tune you class and your stats and your abilities. It’s, pretty much, fighter/mage/thief again (well, with a fresh coat of paint) and your various stats, skills, and abilities. More or less straightforward to folks who have played an RPG before (and certainly if you’ve played Planescape: Torment before), but where it gets interesting is how it’s abandoned the old D&D scaffolding for a new system of rolling dice. Now, you have a pool of might, speed, and intellect points and when you get to any particular challenge, it gives you a percentage chance of success. 30%, 50%, 70%, whatever. Then it asks you if you’d like to spend any points to increase that percentage. You can even spend enough points to make it 100%. “How do you refresh your points?”, I’m sure you’re wondering. It’s as simple as spending the night in an inn or making camp or whathaveyou… but, you should also know, that many quests are time-sensitive and will only be available until you spend the night in an inn or make camp.
So do you *REALLY* want to spend those points now? Are you sure you don’t want to save them until later? 70% *IS* pretty good, all things considered… Oh, heck. I’ll just do some light save-scumming.
Anyway, so far, the game is really interesting, the combat is familiar, the dialogs are fun (I managed to end up with the ability to read the surface thoughts of my companion so that makes conversations even *MORE* fun), and it feels like excavating a new world as I enter each new map and get each new quest.
Just like Planescape: Torment.
So… what are you playing?
(Picture is HG Wells playing a war game from Illustrated London News (25 January 1913))