The GWJ CRPG Club - Game 16: Torment: Tides of Numenera (In Progress)

For more information on the GWJ CRPG Club, go here.

Torment: Tides of Numenera is the GWJ CRPG's Club's 15th runner-up, barely losing to The Outer Worlds. In the (hopefully temporary) absence of GodzillaBlitz, we'll be taking this game up for the 16th episode (Q4 2021) of the GWJ CRPG Club. I'm leveraging GB's previous OP liberally to facilitate this; all kudos go to him.

We'll be playing this game until March 30, 2022. This thread is for friendly discussion as we play through the game. Share your reflections, successes, defeats, tactics, wishes, impressions, and whatever here! The more conversation the better, so post away.

For BIG spoilers, please use the spoiler tag. (No! I am your father!) Tactics, strategies, general story progression likely won't need them.

Anyone and everyone is welcome to participate, and can start at any time, so join the fun! One quick favor: If you decide to play, make a post here along the lines of "I'm in!" to let us know. If you start and finish the game before the end, you'll level up your GWJ CRPG Membership.

Helpful Links
Is There Any Deal: Torment: Tides of Numenera
How Long to Beat (~27 hours)

Members Completed
Alien Love Gardener

Members Playing
Alien Love Gardener

Oddly, this happened when I wasn't paying attention. I think I am down for this one full on.

I’m in. Surprisingly this is not on my Steam list though, so I might be waiting for fall sale.

Is anyone else playing this? I've only just found this thread to check that it was created! Sorry!

I'll be sitting this one out I'm afraid - I might come back to it in the retirement home I think.

I’ll most likely pick it up during Fall Steam sale and play it then.

Numenara has been sitting in my backlog, so I'm hoping to take a stab at it in the next month or so.

Thinking about it, I have 3 months of PC Gamepass which should be long enough…

Oh cool, y'all are doing this one finally! I will have to join in at some point soon.

Yeah, I'm in. I'll just put my replay of Wasteland 3 + DLC to bed first.

Right, so I started my playthrough, and I've made good progress. In fact, I'm pretty sure I'll finish it tonight, or tomorrow, depending on what I do with the rest of the day. I'm in what's the final big area, as far as I remember. I haven't played it four years, so while I know the broad strokes, I've forgotten a lot of the details.

It's fine, but it feels like an imitation - or a castoff, if you will - of Planescape: Torment. It has a lot of the same plot elements, but it doesn't feel like it has the same drive behind it. I guess that's kind of inevitable in some ways, and comes with the choice you make when doing a sequel: you can go bigger, you can zag in an unexpected direction, or you can do more of the same. And since this has no connection in terms of setting or character, they felt like they needed to more of the same in a new setting. But more of the same will never be as good as the first hit.

It's also not helped by Disco Elysium having been released and outclassing it on every level as a non-combat rpg.

Still, I'm having a good enough time, there's some entertaining weirdness and ideas touched on here, and even if I don't think the balance is quite right here - it's a bit too easy, so the economy feels pretty irrelevant - I vastly prefer the minimal approach to combat here to the trash fights in Planescape. Also I recall some people being pissed about the combat becoming turn based, and I don't understand those people at all.

I finished yesterday - the final area was longer than I remembered. I went with


re-uniting all castoffs into Matkina, just for the achievements.

Ultimately, I feel the main issue with the game is that you don't have any real pressure on your resources - resting is too cheap, combat is too sparse. Much as people might want to tar and feather me for this opinion, I think the game could've done with some more time sensitive quests. They do it once in Sagus Cliffs with


the murderer in the Underbelly, where one you start the quest, every rest leads to a new death. Which I'd forgotten about, and led to a prompt reload and I actually thought about my resources for for one. I wasn't going to let that happened to poor little Qeek.

Congratulations! Management will have to figure out how to get you leveled up properly, but in the meantime I've recorded your victory.

Steam sale is here, and I have purchased. I'll start tonight or tomorrow.

Started last night. Didn't get to play long. I'm not even sure I'm out of the tutorial section yet, but so far it seems intriguing.

I seem to have amnesia. Honestly, it'd be shocking if I didn't. Ran into what I assume are some memory snippets of problems I experienced in the past. These small scenarios served as the kind of character creation quiz that I think we first saw in Ultima 6. My choices complete, it spat out that I was a "Graceful Nano." Some kind of wizard type I guess? It gave me the choice to manually reassign attributes and skills, but it sounds cool enough, so I'll stick with it.

Oh, this is great that you've kept this going! Awesome! I was feeling super guilty.

Godzilla Blitz wrote:

Oh, this is great that you've kept this going! Awesome! I was feeling super guilty.

Nothing at all to feel guilty about, GBlitz. Welcome back (I hope)!

merphle wrote:
Godzilla Blitz wrote:

Oh, this is great that you've kept this going! Awesome! I was feeling super guilty.

Nothing at all to feel guilty about, GBlitz. Welcome back (I hope)! :)

Thanks! Yes, I've been focused on tabletop wargaming and making YouTube videos, but have missed the community here. I'm planning to not vanish again.

I've been playing through Torment pretty slowly, savoring all the text and dialogue. Honestly, I'm enjoying it more than I thought I would.

The worldbuilding is the standout. There are so many unique, imaginative details to soak in- weird bits of the environment, or minor characters, or snippets of lore that you know you'll never get the full backstory of. But that's OK, because it feels like there's a backstory there. You just accept them. If you could read about all the gory details in a lengthy codex, it'd be significantly less appealing.

So far, it's got that same feel of some of my favorite video game settings: Fallen London/Sunless Sea, Endless Legend, and Planescape.

Still playing and making slow and steady progress. I'm purposefully going through it slowly and making sure I concentrate on reading every word. Often in this kind of game, I'll start impatiently skimming. With this one I think I'd be missing out on quite a bit though.

I'm at the point where I've wrapped up all the side quests in the first area, so I'm going to be advancing the main plot now. Not sure where that's going. Definitely feels very much like Planescape: Torment so far.

I've reached the point where I've recruited a full posse of side characters. There's the same anxiety I've felt since probably the first Baldur's Gate. I'm frantically shifting people in and out of my party hoping I won't miss one of their personal quests or character-specific interactions. I really wish I could just take all of them with me at once.

Interestingly, one of the party members seems to be a regular young orphan girl with nowhere else to go. Appropriately, her health is terribly low and she doesn't really have any significant abilities to speak of other than hiding. Really, she's a big liability, especially in combat. Still, I'm keeping her around 100% of the time. Partly it's because I'd feel guilty if I let her go. But long experience with RPG's is telling me that surely she's either going to have the biggest narrative payoff and/or she's going to develop psychic superpowers or something. It'd be kind of hilarious though if I finished the game and it turns out I was just dragging around this nearly helpless, random little girl on a dangerous quest the entire time.

The world-building remains the highlight. Everything is just weird and cool and hints at greater mysteries and history that will never be revealed.

Looks like the sole finisher to this point is Alien Love Gardener? <- Congrats!

Let me know if I've missed anyone. I've updated the main thread with ALG's status and will keep an eye on this as things progress.

Just finished last night. I might post some more detailed thoughts later, but if I were to rank it on how much I enjoyed it, amongst similar games I’ve played that are in the CRPG Club*:

1. Disco Elysium
2. Dragon Age: Origins
3. Shadowrun: Dragonfall
4. Torment: Tides of Numenera
5. Divinity: Original Sin 2
6. Divinity: Original Sin
7. Tyranny
8. Wasteland 2
9. Pillars of Eternity

I’m pretty confident in these ratings except maybe D:OS 2 should be ahead of Torment? They’re pretty close. Torment probably wins out because apparently I value story and writing over combat and superior gameplay mechanics.

* Left out Baldur’s Gate because I played it way too long ago to fit it in here. Some of these I did before the CRPG Club began, but BG seems like another lifetime.

Congrats on finishing up, gewy! I've leveled you up on the main page. That's interesting that you enjoyed it so much. I really should give this a shot at some point.