Posts Tagged ‘Planescape-Torment’

Qualified Yays: Planescape Re-Release?

By Kieron Gillen on October 27th, 2009.

Just picked up from Richard Cobbett’s twitter, it appears that Interplay are re-releasing Planescape Torment. Its release date is listed as the 30th October and the price is a – not-much-change-from-the-nature-of-twenty-quid – 17.99 of your Earth pounds. In fact, it appears to be a whole load of Interplay other material too. It’s a surprise to see a decade-old game released at a mid-range price… but it’s also one that I find hard to argue against. A game that’s still placing high in all-time lists, that’s been unavailable for years, that goes for full-price when it turns up on eBay and hasn’t been superseded in any way. If the gaming equivalent of the Beatle’s price never going down and this means that Dan Gril has no excuse but to finally return Alec’s copy to him. Hand it back, you bast.

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Who Owns Planescape Torment?

By Jim Rossignol on September 28th, 2009.

And by “own” I mean the publishing rights. Come on, fess up. You need to tell Direct2Drive, or perhaps (Via Blues.) Then the mighty classic can be re-released. More important information below.
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Planescape Landscapes

By Alec Meer on May 29th, 2008.

Click the pics to embiggen

“What can change the nature of a classic RPG?” Answer – a resolution-tweaking mod.

A couple of you have previously pointed out The Gibberlings Three‘s marvellous Infinity Engine res hack in our comments, but though I cooed with interest and immediately saved it to my bookmarks (three times, it appears), I’ve not had a chance to take a look until now. Yesterday, though, was Finally Replaying Planescape Torment day for me, and word of a resolution-raising tool that saved this incomparable tale of destiny, identity and tragedy from pixels-the-size-of-fists graphic-o-horror excited me enormously.

Turns out it’s a thing of beauty.
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What can change a nature of a man… quickly?

By Kieron Gillen on April 15th, 2008.

I was passing through RPGCodex and noticed something you can file under either “Huh?” or “Blimey!” depending on how you’re wired. It’s a Speed run. Of Planescape Torment.

That’s the first of seven parts. Total time? 1:01:06 and he didn’t even skip the final movie. If only the resolution was a little better, then you could actually pause to read the text and have a Torment-in-miniature experience. I suppose I should get around to writing something about the joys of watching other people play games – my brother and I working through Lucasart adventures, flatmates doing Resident Evil and so on.

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Word Play

By Kieron Gillen on October 16th, 2007.

[A version of this feature was originally printed in UK videogames bible Edge. It’s about the use of Text in videogames, both in the mainstream and over in the world of Interactive fiction. It features material from Chris Avellone (Planescape Torment), Sheldon Pacotti (Deus Ex), Adam Cadre (Photopia, Shrapnel) and Emily Short (Galatea, Floatpoint). I’ve expanded it to fit in in some of the quotes I couldn’t fit in Edge’s word-count. Which were many. If you’ve read my Planescape Retrospective, you’ll recognise some key riffs. This feature very much grew from that one. And enough waffle. Let’s do this thing.]

Best game ever, or so I thought when I was 5 and I hadn't played it.

In the beginning was the word. And the word begat a phrase. And the phrase was “Avoid Missing Ball For High Score”. Gaming’s public relationship with words started here, and continues to this day. It’s these first furtive fumblings which produced the most lasting signifiers which define games in the public eye, and will continue to do so as long as the form continues to exist in its current state. Icons like “Extra Life” and “High Score” are as much a signifier of gaming as any of the corporate mascots.

But this isn’t about that.

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Last Rites, she said…

By Kieron Gillen on October 4th, 2007.

It’s always fun when a story generates another story. Regular readers will recall the Planescape retrospective I posted recently. The ever-lovely Slashdot picked up on it, and one of their commentators pointed everyone in the direction of the game’s actual Vision Statement over at RPGWatch, from when it was called “Last Rites” rather than “Planescape: Torment” and they weretrying to persuade management to greenlight the project.

Since I hadn’t read it, it’s likely that a lot of you haven’t either. It’s interesting to see what was planned that didn’t happen. And it’s interesting because it’s incredibly fucking interesting. It’s one of the best videogame documents I’ve ever seen in my life. It’s smart, driven, obsessed and actually really funny. For example, it has diagrams that look like this.


Clearly, you should read the whole thing. If you haven’t played the game, don’t go past page 25. It’s relatively spoiler free until then, before immediately revealing the biggest secrets in the game. And I’ll quote some random non-spoiler examples beneath the cut.

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Retrospective: Planescape Torment

By Kieron Gillen on September 25th, 2007.

[I originally wrote this for the relaunch issue of PC Gamer, when they were introducing their extra-life section. The Long Play features are basically a critical essay, looking at a game a few years on and noting why it still matters. Anyway, this is my look over Black Isle’s genuinely seminal RPG. A few years old, every word then remains true now – and I sincerely doubt we’ll ever see its like again. Obviously enough, there’s some fairly heavy spoilers in here. Re-reading, it reminds me that I should do something bigger than this on the old warhorse. I’ve got Chris Avellone’s e-mail around here, somewhere…]

A corpse with irresistable sexual magnetisim, indeed.

Ignored by the gaming press upon release, only receiving warmish reviews that stopped well short of open adulation and the victim of one of the most ill-judged marketing campaigns (“A corpse with irresistible sexual charisma”) in history, Planescape Torment is the classic Underdog. Inevitably, it became the (relatively speaking) commercial runt of the Baldur’s Gate litter. In the years since, the coin of its critical worth has accumulated to the point where aficionados regularly cite it as the greatest of the PC RPGs. In fact, it’s rehabilitation has gone too far, with its name being a simple byword for narrative excellence without anyone really feeling the need to say why. There’s more here than dogmatic romantic myth.

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