Table of Contents
- Welcome from Chris Avellone
- Character Generation
- The Interface
- Life and Death in Planescape
- The Planes
- Manual Credits
Welcome to Sigil, the City of Doors...
...and maybe for some of you, like me - welcome back!
It's been almost twenty years since the first edition of Planescape: Torment™ was released. It was an uncertain time, and I was afraid it would be poorly-received and the last title I'd ever work on.
To my surprise, it gathered a great deal of attention and support from the RPG community, some fans of CRPGs, others who were fans of the Wizards of the Coast's campaign setting, and often, players who were a blend of both.
If not familiar with it already, you're in for a treat. Planescape™ is Wizards' fascinating outlook on the Dungeons & Dragons multiverse. Inhabitants wage war, not for territory, but for belief... for what you believe creates reality. The "cant" (the language, slang of Planescape) can be a surprise to newcomers, but you'll pick it up fast. And you'll find friends, companions, and allies across the planes willing to join you on your journey as the Nameless One... and to discover why you cannot die.
I never thought I'd have the chance to revisit Sigil, but when Beamdog laid out their plans for an Enhanced Edition and the chance to polish and re-release the original for another generation of gamers, I couldn't say no (and embarrassingly enough, would also allow me to fix countless text errors that had made it into the original - let's hear it for editors, shall we? They are often overlooked in our industry, even in RPGs.).
Our goal was to keep as true to the original game as possible, yet make it available for another generation of gamers. We've seen a resurgence of isometric RPGs coming back into the public eye, and I'm proud to add the next edition of Planescape: Torment to the list.
Many thanks to Trent Oster, Phillip Daigle, the crew at Beamdog, the PSTEE development team, and Alex Tomovic, who was especially supportive during development. Alex is one of Planescape's fiercest fans, and his energy helped considerably in allowing this project to see the light.
"I just want others to finally have a chance to play it, and enjoy it as much I did."
And I'm grateful to him for it.
Welcome to Planescape... cutter.
Planescape: Torment is the first Advanced Dungeons & Dragons®‚ single- player role-playing game set in Wizards of the Coast’s Planescape™ campaign setting. Originally developed by Interplay’s Black Isle Studios Division, Torment takes the BioWare Infinity Engine™ used for Baldur’s Gate™ and uses it to bring the Planes to your PC. The Enhanced Edition by Beamdog adds an array of modern convenience features and brings the game to life on a variety of modern gaming platforms.
In Planescape: Torment, you take on the role of a scarred, amnesiac immortal in search of his identity. From his initial awakening on the slabs of Sigil’s Mortuary to his journeys across the Outlands and the Outer Planes, Torment introduces the player character to the forces of faith and belief that govern the Planescape multiverse. A world this different takes a different type of hero to explore it. You are that hero.
Planescape: Torment isn’t a role-playing game where death is that minute of irritation between the “game over” screen and reloading a saved game. In Planescape: Torment, death serves to advance the plot and is even a tool for solving seemingly impossible problems.
The character creation system in Planescape: Torment is also a little different than some RPGs you may have played. The game itself is a character generator... your actions throughout the game define your character’s development and have the power to shape the world around you. You will find yourself gaining skills, new classes, and special abilities depending on your style of play. You’ll quickly discover that gathering memories is just as important as gaining experience, talking to the dead can yield more than talking to the living, and the most dangerous of enemies may be the only ones you can trust.
Your character will develop in power as he learns more about himself, but you won’t be alone. Planescape: Torment allows you to recruit a variety of strange companions to join your quest, including a chaste succubi, an insane geometric shape that talks to its weapons, a foul-mouthed mimir, and one of the walking dead. Some of your most vocal and unpredictable party members may be your inventory items themselves.
You have far more to fear from ideas and beliefs than from some berk with a sword. Welcome to the Planes. Welcome to Planescape: Torment.
The Opening Menu
There are a few options on the very first screen that you’ll see once you get the game installed and ready to play.
Start a new game. This will take you to the Character Generation screen (explained in the next section) so you can create your hero and start playing.
Load your most recent saved game.
Open the Load Game screen.
Open the game’s Options menu, allowing you to configure Graphics, Sound, Gameplay, and Language settings.
Plunge into the abyss. This allows you to quit the game.
The first game screen you’ll encounter after getting Torment running is, appropriately enough, the Character Generation screen. Here you’ll generate the stats for your hero.
There are a couple of things to keep in mind when you’re crafting your champion. You can’t be good at everything, so you should pick one or two of your character’s stats to excel in. Here’s an overview of your stats and how each one is important.
Each of your character’s stats give you specific advantages (or disadvantages if the stat is especially low). For more information on exactly what bonuses or penalties are associated with each stat take a look at Appendix A (at the back of the book).
It’s not easy figuring out which stats are most important. Some of that depends on your style of play. If you like to go into a room with your sword swinging then Strength or even Dexterity might be your best bet. If, however, you like to talk your way through some situations and bamboozle your foes with some quick thinking and a sly tongue, then try Intelligence or Charisma. Don’t worry if you don’t feel you have enough points: as you gain experience during the game you’ll be able to assign more points to your stats—which can bring your stats over the initial maximum of 18.
Once you’ve finished assigning the stats to your character, you’re ready to begin playing.
You’ll probably figure out most of the following interface stuff on your own, but it’ll help if you take a quick look through this section before you play and then refer back to it for the finer points, later on. Just take a quick look to see the way things are laid out and then, if you need to later on, you can refer back to the manual to sort out any of the details that you might have missed.
Here’s where we get into the real nuts & bolts of how to play Torment. Take a look at the screen and then we’ll tell you what you can do with each part of the interface.
1 - You
This is the character that you’re currently controlling— usually it’s your hero, but it can be any member of your party whose portrait you’ve selected.
2 - The Game World
You and your party members interact with the world through this screen and interface. Click on one of your characters to select them, then click on a spot on the terrain to move them to that spot. If you select an object or NPC, the character will move to and attempt to interact with it: NPCs will initiate dialogue, chests will open, enemies will be attacked.
You can also click and drag to select all characters within an area. This can be useful for selecting some or all of your party without the need to click on their portraits.
Running and Running Away
You can make your character run to their destination by holding down the Shift key on your keyboard when you click. Along with getting you to points of interest faster, this can be used for the strategic purpose of allowing you to avoid or escape fights.
Note that although you can run pretty quickly, enemies will pursue you as long as they can see you. There’s no shame in fleeing to another area if you get overwhelmed: sometimes discretion is the better part of valour.
Moving the Viewport
You can move the game’s viewing area in one of a few ways. If your mouse has a scrolling wheel that can be clicked, you can click and drag that button to move the screen wherever you like. You can also center the screen on a character by double-clicking on that character.
If you are playing the game in full-screen mode, moving your mouse to the edge of the screen will also move the viewing area in that direction. Pressing the arrow keys on your keyboard will do the same. You can change the speed at which the screen scrolls from the Options screen.
3 - Cursors at a Glance
You can gain an idea of what clicking on an object will do by examining the cursor; its shape conveys the type of action that will be performed. An axe cursor, for example, will cause the character to fight the selected enemy or attempt to bash open a locked chest. A hand will cause the character to open an unlocked chest or loot a pile of items on the ground.
4 - Main Control Panel
This info-packed part of the screen is where you’ll access your spells, inventory, and journal, as well as the game options. Every action your characters perform can be accessed from this interface.
5 - The Clock
Not just a handy timepiece, this part of the screen allows you to stop time while you figure out what you want to do next. To pause the game, simply click on the clock, or hit the spacebar. When you’re ready to resume play, click on the clock again.
Note that you can only give each character one command at a time; if you issue multiple commands to a character while the game is paused, they will only perform the last action you gave them.
6 - Select All
Click this button to instantly select every character in your party. This is useful when you’re ready to move to a new room in a dungeon, or to a new region of Sigil.
7 - Cancel Actions
Click this button to immediately stop whatever action your selected characters are performing or about to perform. They will cease spellcasting, stop moving, and halt their attacks. This is useful if you realize that your hero is about to walk into a trap, or if you decide that you don’t want to cast that fireball spell after all.
8 - Change Formation
This button allows you to configure the standing formation for your party. By default, your party will march into two columns of three. Note that the selected formation dictates the formation your party will take when they arrive at their destination; while moving, every character follows their own path.
9 - Attack
When you click this button, you’ll see all your character’s equipped weapons, with the currently active weapon outlined in green. You can click on any of these weapons to change your currently active weapon; or click on a weapon that’s already active to ready that weapon for combat. You can use your readied weapon to attack an NPC who isn’t currently in combat, or to attempt to bash open a lock on a door or chest.
10 - Cast Spell
Click this button to see a list of your character’s memorized spells. To cast one of them, simply click on the spell’s icon and, if needed, click on the desired target. You can also right-click on a spell’s icon to read its description, which may help in deciding which spell to cast. Both Mage and Priest spells are cast in the same way.
One thing to remember is that casting a spell takes both time and concentration. It’s almost impossible to cast a spell when someone is slashing at you or firing arrows into your hide. That’s also something that you can use to your advantage; if an enemy is throwing a spell at you, try to interrupt his conjuration by attacking him before he can finish his casting.
11 - Use Item
If your character has items equipped in Quick Item slots, you can use this button to activate those items. Simply click on the item you wish to use, and your character will activate the item as described in the item’s description.
12 - Special Powers
Many of your party members have one or more special powers. Clicking on this button will present you with a list of the character’s available powers; clicking on a power’s icon will cause the selected character to use that power.
13 - Talk
Click on this button when you want your character, the Nameless One, to speak on behalf of your party. When you do this you’ll usually get a choice of several different things that you could say to whoever you’re talking to. Pick the dialog line that you want your character to say and the creature you’re talking to will respond.
Usually this response is in the form of more dialogue. However, if you’ve just told a non-player character (any character that you don’t control) to go pike it, they might respond a bit more violently.
Keep in mind that the characters and creatures that you’ll be chatting with do take into account the stats of your character, the Nameless One, resulting in more or less dialogue choices. If your character is Intelligent, you’ll have greater insight, if they’re Charismatic, then they may have options to coax something out of the person that they’re talking to that might not be available to a less likeable hero.
You’ll need to talk to people in order to buy and sell items as well as gather information.
Dialog uses a menu-based system where you Left-click on what you want to say from a list, or you can also use the number pad to select the number of the dialog response you want to use.
If there are more responses available than can be displayed in the current window, a button will appear that will present the remaining options when pressed. You can always scroll up within the dialogue window to read previous conversation messages or view the earlier response choices.
In addition, you may be asked to spend copper coins during dialogue in order to purchase special items or services from an NPC. The number of coppers you currently have is displayed at the bottom of the window during dialogue, so you can make an informed decision about just how generously you want to tip your servers.
Even when not in dialogue, you can open the dialogue window to re-read old conversations or to review combat events.
Shops, Inns, Temples, and Taverns
Throughout the course of the game there are many non-player characters in the world who will offer goods or services. These NPCs all use a similar interface for buying and selling goods, information, and services. When these NPCs are spoken to, a panel will replace the bottom portion of the screen with buttons for the various services offered. Keep in mind that the store interface has all the buttons along the bottom and that some stores in the game restock over time, so it may be worth your while to check back at stores you’ve already visited, just to see if they have anything new for sale.
You should usually try talking to the creatures that you meet, if you suspect that they have any intelligence at all. Often you can avoid needless combat, learn more information, and gain more experience by rattling yer bone-box with a basher than by smashing his head in.
14 - Player Portraits
Later in the game, you’ll find others that will join you in your adventures. You’ll pick which character you want to perform an action by clicking on their portrait.
Below each character’s portrait is a health bar, displaying the general well-being of the character in terms of their hit points. As a character takes damage, the health bar diminishes, until the character drops to 0 hit points and dies.
Changing Party Order
You may decide that you want to change the marching order of your party. To do so, simply click and drag any character’s portrait to its new spot in the roster. Note that The Nameless One cannot be moved out of the first party slot.
15 - Toggle Party AI
By clicking this button, you can turn the automatic behaviors of your party members on or off. If you prefer to manage your party’s combat actions manually, you may want to keep this setting de-activated.
16 - Center on Character
This button causes the camera to center and lock-o to the selected character. It will follow that character until the button is pressed again.
17 - Show Combat Log
If you need to take a look at the last few rounds of combat, or the conversation you just finished, just click this button to bring the dialogue window back up. In addition to conversation text, you’ll find messages from the combat log to help when analyzing your strategies, or simply to keep an eye on the damage you’re dealing to your foes. This can be particularly helpful when a fight goes south and you need to find out why.
18 - Inventory Screen
Most of this screen is taken up by the Paper Doll representation of the character. Along the bottom of the screen is the character’s personal inventory and the encumbrance of the character. Items can be dragged and dropped on the Paper Doll, or dragged and dropped to other characters’ portraits to give the item to the other character.
Stackable items will automatically be stacked in your inventory, as you acquire them, and they can be unstacked by double Left-clicking on the item. Unstacked items can be stacked by dragging and dropping them on top of each other. Items placed in the Ground slots will be dropped at the character’s feet and can be picked up from the main game area.
The group pool of copper pieces is shown on this screen as well.
The Paper Doll
There are a number of distinct areas in the equipped items section. The actual items and areas that you can equip each character with, vary from character to character, but a partial list includes such items/areas as: eyeball, helm, cloak, amulet, L ring, R ring, wrists, gauntlets, quick weapons, quick items, and ammo. In any case, you won’t be allowed to place an item in an area where it won’t fit, so you don’t have to memorize which items go in which slots.
The weapons or items that are put in the quick slots determine the quick attacks that are available to the character. These handy shortcuts allow you access to your character’s items or abilities without having to sort through other screens. They are extremely useful when in combat.
19 - Character Statistics
This screen displays a character’s ability scores in a ring on the left along with the character’s alignment, faction, hit points, and armor class. The right side shows the rest of the character’s statistics, including their class and level, thieving skills, and proficiencies. You can also read each character’s Biography from this screen.
When a character gains enough experience to reach the next level, you can press the Level Up button to apply the effects of the character’s next level. Gaining levels will give each character different benefits based on their class, level, and their unique abilities, but all characters gain more hit points when they level up.
20 - Priest and Mage Spells
This screen displays your character’s available spell slots on the left, and the spells that your character can memorize on the right. To prepare a spell for memorization, simply click on its icon on the right side of the screen; the spell’s icon will appear dimmed on the corresponding slot on the left, demonstrating that the spell is prepared but not yet ready to cast. Prepared spells will become memorized when you rest.
This screen works in much the same way for both Priests and Mages. You can access higher-level spells by clicking the right and left arrows at the bottom of the screen.
How to Memorize and Cast Spells
In order to cast spells in Torment you need to memorize them first. Every spell-caster has a set number of spells that he, or she, can learn, and a different number of spells that you can cast. The number of spells that you can have in your spellbook and the maximum level of the spells that you can learn are governed by your character’s Intelligence stat for a mage, or Wisdom stat for a priest. The smarter your character is, or the wiser if you’re a priest, the more spells you’ll be able to learn. The number of spells that you’re able to cast per level, and the maximum level of spells you can cast, is determined by the experience level of your character.
The best way to think of it is that you have a certain number of spell slots available. To place a spell in a slot you need memorize the spell. You can only do this by resting. You can memorize several of the spells that you have available to you, as long as you don’t exceed the maximum number of spell slots that you have for your level.
If, for instance, you had four first level spells that you could memorize each day, you could fill all four with the first level Magic Missile spell, or you could fill one slot with Magic Missile, one with the Friends spell, and the last two with Shield. It’s up to you.
Spells are a limited resource, at least until your party is able to rest and re-memorize them, so make sure you use your magic wisely—it’s often the only thing that will allow you to survive tough battles.
A mage does not start with spells ready to cast. Instead, they must be learned from scrolls. In order to prepare a new spell that you’ve found so you can memorize and cast it, you need to copy, or scribe it into your character’s spellbook. To add a spell found on a scroll to your spellbook, right-click on the scroll in your inventory.
You’ll be given the option of copying the spell you’ve found into your character’s list of spells as long as your character’s casting stat—Intelligence or Wisdom—is high enough. You do not need to be able to cast the spell yet for you to learn it, it’ll just be available at a later level. For easy reference, which level of spells can be cast by what level character is shown in the Appendix at the back of the manual.
This does not apply to priests. When a priest gains access to a new level of spells they automatically have all the spells for that level ready to be memorized.
21 - Automap Screen
You can write your own notes on the Automap by Left-clicking on the Add Note button, then Left-clicking on the part of the automap you want your note attached to, or by Right-clicking on the map itself. Either of these actions will open up a text box at the bottom of the screen for you to enter your note.
The World Map is accessed from the automap screen. You can’t move around or do anything on this larger map but it’s very useful in orienting yourself and figuring out how to get from one place to another. When you bring up the World map some parts may be blank, since you haven’t visited them yet. As you explore different parts of the world, those areas will show up on your World Map.
22 - Journal
This autobiography keeps track of important information that you’ve learned in the course of your travels. It’s a good idea to check your journal every now and then to make sure you have your facts straight. If you’re coming back to the Planes after taking a break, then the Journal also serves as a handy place to refresh your memory about your recent adventures.
In addition to the Journal, the Bestiary lets you look up some of the different creatures that you’ve encountered. If you need help remembering which quests you’ve agreed to help with, or which quests you’ve completed, then you can open up the Quest Log to clear up any confusion.
23 - Options Screen
There are several controls in this screen that affect how you see, hear, and save your game. Most of the time you’ll just be using the Save, Load, and Quit functions, but it’s a good idea to learn what all the other things on this screen do.
Save, Load, and Quit
These allow you to save games to your hard disk, to load a previously saved game, or quit to the main menu.
There are several controls in this section that you can use to customize the game controls or even to change the overall difficulty of the game.
A group of several controls determine how the game looks on your individual monitor. Normally, you won’t have to adjust these, but if, for example, your screen is particularly dark, you might want to change either Brightness or Contrast, or both.
The other graphics options on this page should only be used if Torment is not displaying correctly on your system. Please refer to the Readme file for the latest information on how to correct any display errors.
This menu allows you to independently adjust the volumes of various sounds in the game.
24 - Rest
If the party is in a safe location, they can set up camp and rest for 8 hours.
25 - Help Overlay
On every screen that has this button you can press it to pop up a help overlay that will explain the function of the screen you're looking at.
26 - Quickloot
When quickloot is enabled you'll see a listing of all the items in nearby ground piles. This makes looting enemies after a fight much quicker and easier.
27 - Combat Log
This button activates a floating log window that describes combat events in greater detail.
Character Stats (R)
Mage Spells (W)
Priest Spells (P)
Attack/Select Quick Weapon (F1-F4)
This number shows how tough it is to whack you with a melee weapon (like a pointed poniard or a big spiky club) or pincushion you with arrows. The lower your armor class (usually abbreviated as AC) number, the more difficult you are to hit. This even extends into negative numbers—so a character wearing Lower Plane Vermin Armor, with an armor class of –6, could walk through a scythe-swinging mob without breaking a sweat. On the other hand, another character sporting a worn cloth tunic, with an armor class of 10, would be cut to ribbons by the same attackers. This applies both to your party members and your enemies. If an opponent you’re squared off against has a thick carapace or burly-looking metal armor then they’re going to be more difficult for you to hit.
Armor is designed to keep you from being hit, however, even the best armor can fail in the face of a determined, or lucky, enemy. When your protection fails you’re going to take damage. The amount of damage that a character can withstand is measured in Hit Points (or HP). The more HP your character has, the tougher they are, and the more damage they can withstand before being incapacitated or killed.
Keep a careful eye on this number. When a character’s HP gets low, consider healing them with magic or even withdrawing them from combat. If you don’t want to spend your magical abilities to heal a character (or don’t have any healing magic available at the moment), then resting will help your party members to regain HP.
Saving Throws and Resistance
Not all of the spells that you cast, or that are cast by your foes, will take effect.
The first hurdle you have to overcome is to cast your spell without being interrupted. Generally, the higher level a spell is, the longer it takes to cast. This is what a spell’s Casting Time refers to. If you’re damaged while you’re in the middle of casting a spell, your concentration is disrupted and the spell will fail to go off. So, if you’re hard pressed try to use spells that have lower Casting Times. On the other hand, you can interrupt an enemy’s spell casting in the same way.
Once you’ve successfully cast a spell, there’s still a chance that your target will not be effected by it.
Each creature has a chance to Save against the effects of the magic. The more powerful a spell’s target is, the better chance it has to resist some or all of the effects of a spell. In addition to this, some creatures are either so highly magical or so non- magical that they have an innate resistance to magic. This is a percentage chance that the creature will completely resists the effects of magic used against it, even before it has to make a saving throw.
Each character has a maximum weight they can carry. The weight currently carried by the character is shown next to the Personal Inventory. Maximum weight carried is determined by the Strength of a character. When you’re carrying 100% of your carrying capacity, you can no longer run, you can only walk. If you pick up items totaling 120% of your maximum carrying capacity, you can’t even walk around anymore-you must drop weight (back down to 100% or less of your capacity) to be able to move again.
Thieves have a specialized set of skills that they can use as often as they like, with a chance of success that’s based upon both their level and their Dexterity stat. You can improve these skills as your thief advances in level. Each time your thief gains a level of experience you’ll gain a few more points to divvy up amongst your thievish abilities. You can check the appendix to see what chance your thief has of performing a skill successfully but here’s a list of what each skill can do.
This is the skill of lightening someone’s, or something’s, pockets, usually of some of the nifty items they might be carrying. An unsuccessful pick pocket attempt has a chance to turn a target hostile, preventing you from speaking to them again. So choose your marks carefully and talk to them before seeing what they have in their pockets.
Some untrusting souls actually lock their valuables away. Use this skill on a locked container or door in order to open it.
You use this skill to both find, and then disarm any traps in the immediate area.
This skill combines both an ability to hide in shadows as well as moving quietly. If you’re successful then your thief cannot be seen by someone outside your party.
The characters, including yourself, will have or gain special powers during the course of the game. When you learn a special power, you can right-click on its icon to see how it works.
You don’t start the game knowing any spells, but you start acquiring them quickly. One thing to keep in mind is that it’s not always a scroll that you can copy from. It can be any item or charm with a power on it — and the item in question has to be identified (via spell or other method) before it can have its spell copied.
Life and Death in Torment
There are a couple of things that you’ll need to know to survive. You’ll need to learn how to fight, what fights you can afford to lose or avoid, and what fights you can’t ever lose if you want to keep exploring the Planes.
How to Fight
There’s more to combat than just flailing away at your opponent, blindly hoping to do some damage. In fact, there’s a whole lot more, and you’ll have a chance to become a real warrior during your travels.
As you gain experience levels you’ll get proficiency points that you can use to become better at one aspect of combat or another. However, you can’t do this on your own. In order to spend those proficiency points on an improvement, you’ll need to find a trainer to instruct you in the finer points of the skill. You cannot spend proficiency points without a trainer.
When you find a trainer, you’ll have to talk to them in order to find out what they are willing to train you to do. Then, if you want to learn what they have to teach, you’ll have a chance to ask them to train you. Don’t pass up these opportunities.
A good trainer is a real asset, and it’s often a good idea to hold a couple of proficiency points aside—just in case you meet up with a trainer who’s teaching a skill you want to learn.
Death (or, They Can Kill You But They Can’t Eat You)
In most role-playing games, getting killed means that you need to go back to your last saved game and try again. Torment is different: you’re immortal. You’ll find that this is a handy trait.
When you are killed, the shock to your system can sometimes actually help you to remember more about yourself and your past. It may help you to remember a useful memory or even a special skill or ability. In addition, you won’t lose any of your items; your character’s stats won’t change for the worse, and your party members won’t have wandered off.
In effect, that which kills you can make you stronger...well, most of the time.
(Then Again, Some of Them Can)
One tidbit of information that you shouldn’t overlook is that while you’re immortal, you’re not invincible. This means that while you can come back to life after almost any event that would kill a normal character, there are still things that can hurt you, or take you out of the world. A short list of events to avoid would be:
1. Avoid tangling with creatures whose power is far beyond that of any immortal (this means that attacking godlike beings is almost certain to end with your permanent demise).
2. Events or creatures that can cause you to go insane—you may be alive,but unless your idea of a good time is to perfect your drooling skills, you’re out of the game at this point.
3. Being imprisoned with no hope of escape. Bad idea, just avoid this.
4. Being buried alive, same as #3, but darker.
5. Being burned to ashes—no coming back from this sort of demise.
I think you get the idea. Oh yeah, being eaten and digested counts as a permanent adventure-ender. So even an immortal, like yourself, is better off using a cautious approach from time to time—or, at least be aware of the risks before you go charging forward.
One way to mitigate the risks you’ll face, and also to acquire some new ones, is to find a group of like-minded friends to help you out. Sure you’ll always have your party of close companions to help you, but I’m talking about larger groups of pals—Factions.
The Planes, Alignments, and Factions
A creature’s alignment as well as the faction that they belong to determine, to a large extent, the way that critters will react to you and your party. The basic set of values and the way that a person, or monster, interacts with the world is called alignment. There are two components to alignment. A creature’s ethics are described by calling it either Lawful (denoting an adherence to order and truth), Chaotic (dedicated to disorder, mischievousness, and often dishonesty), or Neutral (independent of either or displaying traits of both). The second part of an alignment is either Good (seeking the greater good and helping others), Evil (seeking the good for oneself at the expense of others), or Neutral (the middle ground). Most creatures that you’ll run into are not wholly Good nor wholly Evil, nor are they completely Lawful or Chaotic. In any case, the closer a creature’s alignment is to your character’s the more likely they are to get along well, since they think about things in a similar way.
The creatures that make their home on the different planes that you’ll be visiting are often allied with others that share the same set of beliefs. If alignment is a way of describing a creature’s basic morality and ethical code then a Faction would be it’s political affiliation. Ideas are power on the Planes, and beings united by a Faction feel an intense loyalty to their Faction-mates.
As you explore Torment you’re likely to be invited into a Faction. While there are often substantial benefits to be had from joining a Faction be aware that most Factions have enemies as well as friends. While you may be able to get assistance from members of a Faction that you’ve joined, you’ll also encounter enemies of your faction. These enemies may not attack you on sight but they may seek to hinder you in other ways—by refusing to give you information, by informing on you to your enemies, or by sending you in harm’s way. This isn’t to say that you should never join a Faction, only that you should do so with an awareness that it is a two-edged sword.
In summary, the closer your alignment and your faction are to someone that you’re dealing with, the better you’ll get along and the more help they’ll likely give you. The more divergent your alignment and faction are, then the less cooperative a creature will be. If your differences are great enough, a creature may even be openly hostile.
The City of Doors
Don’t look so surprised, sir prime: You’re standing there with an addle-coved look on your face and your bone box wide open. You’re practically crying ‘bob me’ to the peelers around here. Allow me to introduce myself: I’m Etain the Quick, professional tout: Best guide in the multiverse.
Formalities first. Just twelve silvers, berk, and we’ll be off on a tour that’ll make your guts crawl. What? You can’t find your purse? Well, look at this, must have fallen into my own hand. I’ll just help myself, and here’s the rest of your jink back. Best to keep your hand on it from now on - you can’t be too peery around here.
Try not to look up if you’re feeling a bit queasy. It takes some time before most Clueless get used to seeing the city curve away overhead. No doubt Sigil’s different from any place you’ve ever been - it’s like the city’s wrapped inside the curve of a hollowed-out wagon wheel, if you get my meaning. Step lively now, ‘cause we’ve got lots to see and I don’t have all day.
This is Sigil, City of Doors, the Cage, crossroads of the multiverse. In the planes you’ll spy things you’d never even begin to imagine. You’ll see angelic devas drinking bub with toadlike slaadi. You’ll see barmy wizards living in walking castles. You’ll see an eternal Blood War between fiends bent on annihilation. And you’ll see the powers themselves. ALL you have to do is walk through the right kind of portal, and you can go anywhere.
But don’t worry about bumping into a power on the street here in the Cage - the Lady keeps them out of Sigil, and keeps a serene and watchful gaze on things as a whole. She’s the one who creates and removes the planar portals, among other things. All a body need remember is that she’s not to be peeled - not to be crossed. The Lady keeps Sigil out of the politics and bloodshed that rage through the planes, and she does it with an active hand. Those who defy her rule end up alone in the Mazes - little prison demiplanes - with her compliments. Or else they’re flayed alive, just by her gaze!
Watch your step - that street’s closing in! Looks like the Lady’s doing some rearranging. Think of it this way: Sigil’s not some third-rate burg somewhere. It’s alive. Sometimes at night, or when the smoke and drizzle ain’t so bad, a cutter can almost feel the city breathing. It grows, it shrinks, whole streets disappear, and true Cagers don’t skip a beat. Yes, it’s alive… But that don’t mean it’s got a heart.
We’ve got lots to cover yet; dabus, factions, those pesky cranium rats… If you’re a good Clueless I may even tell you a few darks - that’s secrets to you. Where do I begin? Quick, hand me another bit of jink; it helps put my brain box to work…
The Weeping Stone Catacombs
Where do the dead in Sigil go? There’s got to be some burial ground that’s safe from the prying hands of the Collectors and the death-greedy Dustmen, right? There is - or there was - and this is it. The Weeping Stone Catacombs, a lightless labyrinth of crypts and coffins, filled with the dead of Sigil’s past. Rumor is that more than the dead lie down here - that there’s something more. Infernal monsters, undead… and cranium rats.
A rat's nothing. It’s vermin, a piece of furry garbage to be kicked aside. Two, five, even ten of them: it don’t make much difference. That is, it don’t make a difference unless they’ve got glowing brains exposed on their heads. That’s a different story. See, cranium rats get smarter as their group gets bigger. Two rats still ain’t much of a challenge - but put ten to twenty of ‘em together, and suddenly they’ve got magic. They waylay drunkards for their dinner, topple houses, and start raising the Nine Hells. That’s only twenty of ‘em.
There’ve been whispers that thousands of these filthy creatures live in the Weeping Stones.
Word has it that nothing can break the barriers that keep Sigil separate from the rest of the planes, that there’s no power in existence that can make it past the Lady’s watchful wards. It’s why everyone’s rattlin’ their bone boxes about this battle-scarred and war-smoking tower that crashed down in the middle of the Lower Ward not too long ago. The thing’s carved round with runes and symbols, and the never-ending, street-shaking crash of metal on metal inside makes a body wonder what sort of devilry’s going on. It’s a war machine, to be sure, and its sides are melted from acid and flame, pieces shattered by intense cold, and strange geometries warp around its corona, some sort of weird eldritch magic.
One thing’s for certain about the siege tower: Nobody in their right mind gets anywhere near the thing.
The Smoldering Corpse Tavern
Everyone needs a place to go and kick their feet up for a while. Just sit back and reflect on the meaning of life, death, and injustice, a place where everyone’s accepted as they are. That’s the Smoldering Corpse, where the prime attraction’s the title of the place. They’ve opened a channel to the Elemental Plane of Fire through an unfortunate pyromaniac who thought he could burn Sigil down, and his body twists and burns for the amusement of the bubbers.
Ebb’s a soldier who’s too old to fight and too hard to die. He’d been a member of the Harmonium - one of Sigil’s factions and its police force - for decades, ‘til his knee finally gave out on him. Now he conducts tours of the city from the comfort of a bar-side seat at the Smoldering Corpse, tellin’ folks what they need to know about the fair city and its downfalls. He’s a good fellow to know, and he ain’t as judgmental as most folks’d have the Harmonium be. Buy him a drink or two and have a listen to his tales.
Aethelgrin and Tegar’in the Thrice-Damned
Every war has its secret agents, its informants, and its deserters. It ain’t clear what function these two abishai - gargoyle-like fiends - serve, but they’ve taken up residence at the Smoldering Corpse and seem determined to make good on their time away from the Blood War that rages hellishly across the Lower Planes. It’s said a body can approach them for information, buying or selling. It’s also said that they offer contracts to certain individuals - the kind most folk steer clear of.
Fell’s Tattoo Parlor
The twisted alleyways of the Hive hide surprises for the unwary, and few sane folk trust their feet on any street here, day or night. It’s a dangerous place, full of dangerous people… but it’s got a few wondrous surprises.
One of these is Fell’s Tattoo Parlor, tucked away in the grimy Hive Ward, nestled in a twisty street. This ain’t just any tattoo parlor; those are common as disease. This is Fell’s. He’s the cutter who can make his tattoos come to life.
Fell is a dabus, one of the servants of the enigmatic Lady of Pain who speak in rebuses. Only… chant has it he’s stripped of the Lady’s favor for daring to serve one of her chief rivals, the dead and flayed god Aoskar. Unlike most of those who cause problems for the lady, though, Fell’s still alive and kicking - and he’s discovered the power of grafting his floating word-symbols onto people. Give him a picture of what you want, and he can make it reality. Just be careful - you don’t want a dead warrior leaping from your back, howling for your blood.
This section describes how to get through the first area in the game—enough to get you rolling. Don’t read this part if you want to discover how to make your way through the beginning of the game on your own. There isn’t anything described in here that you can’t find out by playing the game yourself.
The Mortuary is where you start the game. Your goal is to escape the Mortuary without being subdued by the Dustmen (the Mortuary custodians). Most of the Dustmen and the undead in the Mortuary won’t bother you unless you bother them first, so step carefully through this location and try and find out all you can.
Some general words of advice on the denizens of the Mortuary:
Dustmen: You’ll find that talking to some of the Dustmen is dangerous... if you say the wrong thing or arouse their suspicions, they’ll try and call for the guards. If your Dexterity is high enough, you can grab them and snap their necks (through dialogue) before they can call out.
Zombies and Skeletons: These mindless drones handle all the tasks in the Mortuary the Dustmen don’t want to do. These walking corpses are harmless unless provoked. If attacked, they can become quite dangerous.
Top Floor of the Mortuary
Once past the character generation screen, your next sight is your character crawling off a slab in the Mortuary's Southern Preparation Room. You're locked in and sharing the room with a number of other corpses, including a talking skull (Morte), who will approach you as soon as you slide off the table. Listen to what Morte has to say about the tattooed instructions on your back, then search the room, looking for weapons and items. A scalpel and a couple of bandages can be found in the two nearby tables; snag them all, then arm yourself with the scalpel and kill all the zombies in the room.
Zombie #752 in the southeast corner of the room has the key you need to open the Preparation Room gate in the northwest corner of the room—it is the only gate the key can open. When you pick up the key, open the gate and then step into the next room to the north. If Morte is still with you, there will be a brief scripted sequence where he will tell you to keep your attacks in check until you escape the Mortuary.
Move north until you enter the Receiving Room, the room with the huge book. Search every container in the room, picking up whatever items you can find. After searching the room, speak to each of the walking corpses. When you have fully explored the room, go to Dhall, the floating figure in front of the huge book and strike up a conversation. Ask him as much as you can about yourself and where you are, and quiz him on the Dustman philosophy (it'll prove useful later). After asking him all you can, leave by the Receiving Room's North Gate.
Follow the Mortuary rooms clockwise until you hit the Embalming Room. There is a Dustwoman, Ei-Vene, at one of the tables who is partially blind and deaf. When you speak to her, she will mistake you for a zombie and ask you to fetch some embalming fluid and some needle and thread for her. When you return with the fluid and the needle and thread (the embalming fluid can be found in the Eastern Preparation Room and the needle and thread can be found on the third floor [though you'll have to search the third floor for yourself] ), she will reward you for your efforts.
Keep in mind is that not everything, or everyone, is as they seem, here on the planes. Tread carefully.