Planescape: Torment gets an Enhanced Edition!


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Scarab Sages

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Planescape: Torment Enhanced Edition


Kind of torn. It would be nice to have a version of the game that doesn't have to be cludged, fudged and finagled to work on modern systems (and still crashes out often), but they're adding basically nothing.

On the other claw, Beamdog's attempts at writing new content and balancing new encounters were... pretty woeful. IWD2 seems more their speed (as a pure dungeon crawl), though I believe they've said they ran into problems with the changes that came with the 3.0 conversion.

On top of that... There's also a lot of freshman philosophy 101 nonsense masquerading as 'deep thought' that doesn't really hold up as well to too many decades of education and life experience. What seemed impressive and thought-provoking as a teen seems pretty callow and shallow now. Though admittedly, I'm having a hard time with folks waxing really nostalgic about older video games. The supremacy of self-edited memories is really strong at the moment. Nostalgia should crumble a bit at re-playing an old game, not feel stronger and justified.


While some of the philosophy is not exactly advanced, I sincerely doubt a dedicated delve into the metatext of Derrida would have sold very well...

There is also the matter of it being very faithful to the philosophy level of the rest of Planescape.

The Exchange

Voss wrote:
Nostalgia should crumble a bit at re-playing an old game, not feel stronger and justified.

I get where you're coming from but still have to disagree in this case. PS:T is a real classic, a piece of art and to me, that's like saying that you can't like Shakespeare, Mozart or Casablanca if not for nostalgia. (And self-edited nostalgia has nothing to do with it, as I'm still replaying those older games from time to time. Wouldn't do it if it wasn't fun).

This said, I'd rather have them design new games in the vein of BG and PS:T like Pillars of Eternity or Tides of Numenera because I already own those old games and they run onmy PC quite fine.

Scarab Sages

I'm happy the game is available for a new generation (though sad that a new group of players have to stumble through 2nd Edition D&D. Hi there THAC0).

Also, the PS:T soundtrack is still fantastic, all these years later. Damn.

Other than that, I have to agree with Wormy. New games are better than replaying, even PS:T which really is a classic. Thankfully we have Tides and the upcoming Pillars 2.


Sissyl wrote:
While some of the philosophy is not exactly advanced, I sincerely doubt a dedicated delve into the metatext of Derrida would have sold very well...

I wouldn't advocate for that. But that isn't what I mean. I mean that instead of writing being derived (and made somewhat more accessible) from a considered understanding of philosophy, it was someone cribbing their half-remembered study notes of a freshman philosophy class that mostly took place in a Starbucks. It sounded impressive at the time, but trite now.

Pillars of Eternity struck me as an even worse version of that (unsurprisingly given many of the same people were involved), in all honesty, with a hip flask of whiskey being added in.

Scarab Sages

Is Pillars of Eternity worth it? I actually have the guide, but not the game.

@Voss: Even when presented by an outside source, philosophy is inevitably more of a reflection of what's within you. It can't really be taught.


You know the philosophy of the Factions was intended to be 'half-assed' (as one of the designers put it), right?
Like a bunch of first-year philosophy students arguing based on their rather new and imperfect understanding of more advanced philosophy. And of course most members of the Factions, like most members of any religion or political movement, know even less, just a few key words and the basic gist, and they get all gung-ho about it.

Scarab Sages

I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:

Is Pillars of Eternity worth it? I actually have the guide, but not the game.

@Voss: Even when presented by an outside source, philosophy is inevitably more of a reflection of what's within you. It can't really be taught.

Pillars is excellent. I highly recommend it.

Scarab Sages

Belabras wrote:
I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:

Is Pillars of Eternity worth it? I actually have the guide, but not the game.

@Voss: Even when presented by an outside source, philosophy is inevitably more of a reflection of what's within you. It can't really be taught.

Pillars is excellent. I highly recommend it.

It's just that the class selection seems a little limited and boring - a little too "core," if you will. Is this the case? If so, can it be expanded on somehow?

Scarab Sages

Ultimately your choices and how persuasive you are matter a lot more than what class you pick.


PILLARS is okay-ish, but it's too big and too long: the story and narrative elements don't really support the 50+ hour playtime. There's also baffling technical limitations, particularly the tiny size of areas, which are far smaller than either the Infinity Engine games or other Unity games. It's also rather inconsistently written. They used Chris Avellone's name on the Kickstarter to get people to sign up, but his contributions to the game ended up being rather limited and the main creative force ended up being Josh Sawyer, who is, er, not quite in the same league [/understatement]. No wonder Chris quit Obsidian in the game's aftermath.

The biggest problem PILLARS has is that it's supposed to be a modern BALDUR'S GATE, but BALDUR'S GATE itself is actually rather more playable and frankly (some now-baffling 2E rules aside) is still a much better game (and BG2 is simply on another qualitative plain altogether). I actually thought that TYRANNY, which uses the same engine as PILLARS, is a much stronger game, benefiting from a shorter length and tighter focus.


Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:
You know the philosophy of the Factions was intended to be 'half-assed' (as one of the designers put it), right?

The Factions are... a non-issue in Torment. Yeah, you can join a few (for no reason) but that isn't what I'm talking about. The writers of the computer game really want to sell you on a philosophy. It isn't very convincing.

Its.. especially unconvincing in a planar D&D setting, where immortality and resurrection are not at all unusual things. Even in the game they hand you 'raise dead 3/day' as a bonus power 30 minutes in.

Belabras wrote:
Ultimately your choices and how persuasive you are matter a lot more than what class you pick

In Pillars? Pillars is mostly a choiceless railroad down a path that doesn't even affect you. You fix nothing, you just make an uninformed choice after Unpreventable Boss Fight (much like the ME3 ending, you might as well be picking colors). Had you not been there, the 'big problem' would have been resolved anyway, because he had finished what he was doing.

@Hiding- yeah, it is. Class design is also really *weird*. Too much D&D, when the system doesn't really support or require D&D style choices (like vancian casting). The system is built around killing (or stunlocking) enemies as fast as possible. Only the psion (er.. cipher) really supports that well since they alpha strike and then recharge and are back at max resources at the beginning of each fight.

The chanter with a slow build up is actually the antithesis of how the system functions. Steal enough encounter powers from the cross class feats and they can be functional enough until they give out big passive effects, but they don't mesh well.

@Werthead- I'd agree with that. The ending to Tyranny is much too abrupt, but mechanically and writing wise, it is much better.


I agree on the factions should have been done better. The one with the 'undead ignore you' came far too late for instance. Kind of like in the obscure LIONHEART game, you could meet Machiavelli who...was alone in a room and gave you some lame quest instead of political shenanigans I was hoping for.

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