A unique and meaningful masterpiece. If you don't like reading, don't play this.

By video games' standards, Planescape: Torment is an old game. It is based on the Baldur's Gate engine, and was developed by Black Isle, the makers of Fallout 1 & 2. Though this technology is old, it has little relevance to the main strongpoint of the game. What makes Torment stand out in its genre and games in general, is the amount of effort put into the text - the sheer amount of it, that you encounter throughout the game. For instance, I walked into the "Smoldering Corpse Bar," and spent about an hour and a half having conversations with the bar patrons, hearing their life stories, and learning new things about the game's setting. The quality of the writing gives so much meaning to every character you meet, more so than any other game. I know I said the visuals were rather irrelevant, but the art direction in Torment is outstanding. Each level is intricately and uniquely drawn, helped by the fact that the game is more zoomed into the action than Baldur's Gate, and the game engine is not tiled. Adding to that, the spell effects in this game are also stunning and greatly detailed. Gameplay-wise, Torment is reasonably generic compared to others in its genre: point and click, from a 3rd person perspective. Statistics are customised at the start of the game, and can be increased as you gain experience and level up. Items can be picked up around the game and placed in your inventory, and various NPCs can be traded with using money. You can recruit up to 6 NPCs, each of whom have their own inventory and statistics, and can be commanded individually or as a group or subgroup. Also, these NPCs can add to conversations, and give advice in particular situations, in which they would otherwise not be present. Now it may be ordinary in gameplay, but its setting is what makes it different from the rest. Torment is set in the Planescape multiverse, which is made up of various planes of existance, or dimensions. The ethical alignment in the game consists of good vs evil, as well as lawful vs chaotic, and these two axis can change according to your actions in the game. They are combined as one alignment based on these actions too. For example, one can be 'good chaotic,' meaning they are good at heart, but are against laws and rules. The Planesape is very different compared to the traditional fantasy RPG themes - in general, it is more grotesque, and less glorified, coming across as a very harsh world. The main character is simply called 'The Nameless One.' He suffers from amnesia, and cannot remember his name, his identity, and why he cannot die: the game starts when he wakes up in a mortuary, and whenever he is defeated in combat, he arrives back in the mortuary, and the game continues. This a very interesting mechanicism - one which I think gives the game a much greater flow, assuming the player is not cheap enough to simply reload the game :D. The game's main quest line is his search for his identity and his lost past, and this makes for an very intriguing storyline.

Planescape: Torment is a traditional RPG, but has unique setting and storyline, and the huge amount of well written in-game conversations and reading material make it a rich and meaningful experience. It is a refreshing change from your usual fantasy RPG.