inXile Entertainment has released information on the ongoing development of the battle system for Torment: Tides of Numenera. This includes a developer walkthrough of an early game Crisis, which are handcrafted situations of conflict.
Combat is turn-based and every turn each party member is afforded an Anoetic Action, a Occultic Action, and the opportunity to set up a Defensive Maneuver. An Anoetic Action is an optional yet quick one, used to activate buffs, switch weapons, or activate cyphers. Occultic Actions comprise the bulk of a character's actions, including attacks, esoteries, and activating advanced cyphers. Defensive Maneuvers act as behaviors for characters during other turns and will be toggled.
The video shows off some of these concepts as well as the open nature of each Crisis. Every NPC in the game is given a distinct personality on how to act and react to varying situations. Players will have multiple options to complete the Crisis, including combat, talking their way out of the situation, or using the environment to their advantage.