Torn Tidbits

Torn is the tale of a wanderer, bringing terror and chaos upon anything he touches. He roams the realm of Agathe, trying to find a release from this terrible curse. The constant struggle between order and chaos comes to a head and threatens to tear the world of Torn apart. Torn features a departure from the AD&D rule set in favor of the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. system found in Fallout as well as a completely new world. The newest RPG from the creators of Icewind Dale and Planescape: Torment looks to become yet another quality title under Black Isle's belt.

Though Torn will feature the high-performance LithTech 3.0 engine, the game will not be played from a first-person perspective; rather, the isometric 3-D view found in many PC RPGs will be retained. Six different races can be used, ranging from giant ogres to forest-dwelling nymphs. Experience and skill points will be gained through adventuring, and can be spent to improve character skills and traits. Up to five companions can join a player in battle, each of which can be either computer-controlled or human-controlled over the Internet. The multiplayer mode will be slightly adjusted for difficulty, and any items received in a multiplayer game can be used in the single-player mode. NPCs, though not as effective as playing with a human companion, have strong AI and can be ordered to do virtually anything. They each have distinct personalities, and will obey orders based on those personalities.

Player characters have been the primary focus of Torn. Players will be able to customize their characters to a very high level, from age to race to skills to portraits to sound effects to even the way the game is played. Many puzzles in the game can be solved in many different ways, and every decision a character makes will alter that character's personality. Though the alignment system of previous RPGs has been more or less abandoned, a karma system will keep track of the decisions a player makes. The game will react to this karma system accordingly.

To increase interest in the world of Torn, Black Isle has created a series of websites describing the story and mythology of the game world. They have requested that players visit the website in order to draw players into this unique world long before the game hits store shelves. An expansive FAQ and a library on many of the primary ideas comprising the world of Torn. To take the first steps into the world of Torn, Black Isle's website can be entered here. RPGamer will bring more news on this promising game as it arrives.

by Justin Weiss    
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