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inXile admit that Torment stretch goal content has been cut, including companions

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inXile admit that Torment stretch goal content has been cut, including companions

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Sat 28 January 2017, 19:01:35

Tags: Brother None; Eric Schwarz; InXile Entertainment; Torment: Tides of Numenera

The Torment: Tides of Numenera Kickstarter campaign in 2013 was a merry affair, with numerous stretch goals fulfilled. Now, nearly four years later and with indications that the game's development may have been troubled, some people have begun to wonder about the state of those stretch goals.

It started when local inXile sceptic Fairfax claimed earlier this month that The Toy, a unique "living ball of goo" companion who was a $2M stretch goal, had probably been cut from the game, based on its near-total absence from decompiled beta files and promotional footage. Another companion named Riastrad had also probably been cut. These claims were strengthened by the absence of said companions from Torment's Playstation 4 trophy list (spoiler alert). Faced with this evidence and the subsequent unrest on their official forums, inXile's Eric Schwarz was finally compelled to respond a couple of days ago:

Hi guys,

The companion roster has been slightly reduced from our initial plans. Throughout development on Torment, our philosophy has always emphasized depth and reactivity in our storyline and in our characters. We know you would not be satisfied with anything else. During development, we found that the more far reaching and reactive our companions were, the better they felt and the more justice it did to the original Planescape: Torment. This trade-off meant we were able to add more companion conversations, banter, voice-over, quests, and story endings. We did not want to leave some companions feeling shallow, with storylines that felt incomplete, or be forced to shove them into the late game.

That said, we certainly haven't shut the door on Torment’s development. We still have a lot of early work done on other companions and are open to continuing to work on the game. We can say that any DLCs or expansions that we put out will always be free to our backers of that game, so there is no need to worry about paying for any additional content in Torment.
But before that happened, Fairfax raised the possibility that another piece of content, the Oasis of M'ra Jolios, had also been cut from the game. The Oasis was to be Torment's "second major city" and was a $4M stretch goal. Unlike The Toy, areas from the Oasis had appeared in recent promotional material from inXile, but it was still suspiciously absent from beta files and the PS4 trophy list. To this claim, Thomas Beekers responded on the inXile forums:

Hey everyone. The Oasis is still represented in the game, and as some of you have pointed out, we've shown it several times before in screenshots and media.

You may have noticed we've been showing off the Bloom a lot lately, and that's no coincidence. Despite being one of the earliest locations we showed, the Bloom was originally intended to be smaller than it ended up being. Though we initially planned for the Oasis to be our second major story hub, over time our fascination with the Bloom's darker, more Tormenty feel, led to it being recast as the game's second major city hub instead. We felt creatively this was the right thing to do, and the change did not shorten the gameplay experience.

As a result, the Oasis ended up taking on a smaller role, but you will still be able to visit it during the game.
Finally, realizing that something was up, a user on the inXile forums asked about the state of yet another piece of stretch goal content - the Voluminous Codex, a kind of fancy customizable in-game journal/lore compendium that was added to the game when the Kickstarter campaign reached $4.25M. Eric Schwarz replied briefly:

We're still going to release the Voluminous Codex, but we're now planning to offer it as a separate lore compendium outside of the game.
Regardless of how you feel about their responses, it's now clear that despite an extended development cycle, a ready-made engine from Obsidian, an existing ruleset and a simple, restricted combat model, inXile have had significant issues with the management of Torment's development. There's no telling which of the game's many other stretch goals they may have also backed out of. I would strongly recommend that they publish a Kickstarter update clarifying this matter. People paid money for these.

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