Concerning Games, Torment, and a Sense of Play

Let me tell you a story.

Well, actually, let me tell you a story that consists of several stories. And it’s *about* stories.

This should not surprise anyone, really. This is what I do.

*     *     *

Back in 2009 I attended Gen Con as author Guest of Honor. It was one of my first GOH gigs, and at a convention I’ve been attending off and on for most of my adult life.

That said, I was still a pretty new author in 2009. I only had one book out, and had only been published for two years. People came to my signings and panels. I had fun. But honestly, I wasn’t a very big deal.

Wandering around the dealer’s hall, at one point someone came up to me and said, “What makes you so honorable?” When I gave him a baffled look, he pointed down at the ribbon on my badge that said. “Guest of Honor.”

“Oh,” I said. “I write books.”

“Oh,” he said. And walked away.

*     *     *

After taking a break from Gen Con for a couple years, I headed back in 2012. I wasn’t GOH or anything, and was mostly going to play some games and hang out with friends, including my new bestie Robert Gifford of Geek Chic.

But in 2012 I’d been published for *five* years. And I had *two* books out. I’ve hit #1 on the New York Times. I’ve been hugged by Felicia Day. I’m not really a big deal, but I’m certainly a bigger deal than I ever was before….

The difference was most notable when I walked around the dealer’s room. People would stop and say, “Are you Patrick Rothfuss?” And we’d stop and chat a little bit. One particularly memorable couple came up to me and said, “That’s the best Pat Rothfuss cosplay we’ve ever seen! The beard looks so real!” and asked to get a picture with me.

I won’t lie, it’s kinda fun. One of the main reasons I go to conventions is to meet up with my readers. My readers are lovely people.

Still, I was surprised at how *many* people recognized me. Artists, dealers running their booths. Catgirls.

On Sunday, a tall dark stranger came up to me and said, “You’re Pat Rothfuss, aren’t you?”

“Yup,” I said. We shook hands and I read his badge. “Nice to meet you Colin,” I gestured to the vast panoply of geekery around us. “How do you fit into all of this?”

“I write games,” he said.

“Role Playing stuff? Computer games?”

“Both,” he said. “I worked on Planescape back in the day…”

“The computer game?” I asked.

He nodded.

“Planescape Torment?” I asked.

He nodded again.

“You are fucking kidding me,” I said. “I was just talking to someone about Torment. That was one of the best games I’ve ever played.”

He looked at little surprised at this, “Wow,” he said. “I….”

“The narrative was brilliant,” I said. “It’s been ten years, and I haven’t known a game to come close to it.”

“Well…”

“I mean you had honest-to-god open-ended character development that was an integral part of the main narrative,” I said. “Nobody else has ever pulled that off as well. It was amazing.”

“It…”

“I still remember the interaction you could have with some of the NPC’s,” I said. “You actually had to be clever talking to them. You could offend them and piss them off. The writing was solid and smart. You had a branching narrative that still felt cohesive and engaging. I’ve never seen that handled so well except for maybe in the early Fallout games.”

“…”

“And the dialogue,” I said. “It was great. How the hell do you manage to write things like that? To keep track of all the different ways a conversation can go…?”

Eventually I shut up long enough for him to tell me he liked my books. We traded e-mail addresses, and he offered to show me what the dialogue trees looked like when you’re writing a computer game.

I was happy as a kid at Christmas.

*     *     *

A couple months later, in November, Colin and I chatted a bit.

“We’re going to be writing a game that will follow in Torment’s footsteps,” he said. “Good character. Good story.”

“I’m tingly at the very thought,” I said.

“Want to help write some of it?” he asked.

“Oh shit,” I said. “Yes. I’ve always wanted to take a poke a writing a computer game.”

“Cool,” Colin said.

“No,” I said. “I want to, but I can’t. I have to work on Book Three.”

“We don’t want you to write *all* of game,” Colin said. “Maybe just a side area. Subplot. A piece.”

I made a miserable noise. “I can’t.” I said. “My editor would be pissed. My readers would be pissed. I’m already behind schedule.”

“That sucks,” he said.

“Yeah,” I said.

I’m paraphrasing a bit, you realize. But the sentiment is dead-on. When I said “no” I felt like a kid who had to stay inside and practice the piano while all his friends got to go eat ice cream and have awesome sex on the moon.

Nate's illo

*     *     *

January 2013.

Colin: You sure?

Me: I really can’t. Revision is going slow. I should keep grinding away.

Colin: Fair enough. I understand.

*     *     *

March 5th

I bring in Colin McComb, Jerry Holkins (From Penny Arcade), and Veronica Belmont (From Sword and Laser) to talk about videogames and storytelling on Storyboard.

It ends up being one of my favorite episodes so far, probably because everyone is passionate and outspoken. Colin, Jerry, and Veronica all know so much more than I do on the subject, and that’s great.

(Sorry. It’s embedding ugly. Just click over to Youtube.)

Colin mentions the upcoming Torment game. They’re going to launch the kickstarter tomorrow. They’ve got a lot of great creative people on the project.

During the panel, I get a little crotchety about modern games. I make some noises along the lines of, “Video games are pissing away the storytelling opportunities available to them. There’s bad writing. Foolish mistakes. When I was a kid….”

Jerry steps in and says, “We’re at the helm now. If we see these things we don’t like, it’s our fault. [...] We can’t just point at it and expect the universe to fill it.”

It’s startling to hear. But he’s right, of course. I know he’s right.

*     *     *

March 6th

InXile launches their kickstarter for Torment: Tides of Numenera.

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They raise over $2,000,000 in less than a day. It seems like I’m not the only one who remembers those old games fondly.

*     *     *

March 7th

I realize the story I’m trying to write for an anthology isn’t working out. It’s my second attempt to write a story to fill this obligation I agreed to more than a year ago. I’m months overdue, and I feel like an asshole.

I need to get this story done and out of the way so I can get back to working on book three.

Though honestly, those revisions aren’t going that well either. It feels like a grind. It’s going slow.

*     *     *

March 10th

I’m at the Tucson Festival of Books, eating Pizza with Sam Sykes, Kevin Hearne, and Diana Gabaldon.

Sam Sykes says, “We’re at our most creative when we’re at play.” Then he tells a story about a famous director who would send people home for the day if they were taking their job too seriously.

And he’s right, of course. I know he’s right.

*     *     *

March 11th

Coming home from Tucson, I think to myself, “Fuck it. When I get home, I’m going to start a new story for that anthology. Something fun.”

*     *     *

March 12th

I decide I’m going to write a story about Bast.

I have no idea what the story will be about. I have no plan. I have no plot in my head. Honestly nothing.

When I teach, I stress that writing is not merely a communicative process. People think writers are effectively engaging in transcription. We have something in our heads, and we just write it down. That’s how people think stories happen.

But that’s not how it works. Writing can be communication. But most of the time, writing is a generative process. The story comes into being as it’s being written. It’s about discovery. Assuming you have to know what happens before you sit down to write is a rookie mistake.

So I sit my ass down. I decide I’m going to take my own advice. I’m going to write even though I have no plan. I’m going to write and see where it takes me.

I’m going to be irresponsible. I’m going to play.

At the end of the day, I’ve written 4,500 words.

*    *     *

March 12-16th

I write 16,000 words. Good solid words. That’s not even counting the crap I trimmed out and threw away. I finish the Bast story except for one or two small scenes. It will be a great fit for the anthology.

I feel great. I’m excited about writing again. I think about revising book three and it sounds fun. I want to get back to it.

If you don’t know how much 16,000 words is. Let me put it in perspective for you.

If I wrote 16,000 words every week. By the end of the year I would have produced over 800,000 words of text.

That’s twice as long as The Wise Man’s Fear.

If I can maintain my sense of play. I could easily write a book a year.

A book a year *plus* all the other things. Fun little stories. Poems and songs. Maps.

Games…

*     *    *

March 17th

I call Betsy, my editor. She’s glad to hear the writing’s going well again.

She’s not surprised that a fun side project has helped refresh me. She’s knows how writers’ brains work. She knows more about it than I do, actually. That’s her job.

She’s a great editor.

*     *     *

March 18th

I send Colin an e-mail. Then I decide to call him, instead because I know we’re getting down to the wire.

“Do you still want me?” I ask. “I know it’s kinda late.”

“We’d love to have you,” he said. “We can add you as a stretch goal.”

“How much writing are we talking about here?” I ask.

“Maybe 10,000 words,” Colin says. “More if you like. Less if you need it to be less.”

“Could I maybe help with some of the character arcs too?” I ask. “I’m pretty good with character. You could use me as a sounding board if nothing else, and ignore me if you think I’m being an idiot.”

“Um…. let me think,” Colin says sarcastically. I can hear the smile in his voice. “A chance to chat with you about stories and character development. I think the answer to that is…. yes. “

I want to for so many reasons. But still, I hesitate.

“We’ll pay you of course,” he says. He names a number. “I could get you more, if you need it.

“That seems fair,” I say. “I don’t want to put the squeeze on you.”

Then a knee-jerk instinct kicks in. “However…” I say in my best used-car salesman voice. “I do run a charity….”

“You mean Worldbuilders?” he says.

“Oh,” I say, pleasantly surprised. “You’ve heard of it.”

“Of course I’ve heard of it,” he says.

“Well,” I say slowly. “This year we started accepting corporate sponsorships….”

“I can make that happen,” Colin says. “I’ll talk to the boss, and one way or another, we’ll make it happen.”

“Okay,” I say. “You’ve got me.”

 *     *     *

So there you go. Pretty soon, within just a couple of hours, they’re going to be announcing my involvement in the project.

You can go and check out the Kickstarter over here.

I’m not going to lie. I think it’s going to be an awesome game, and I’m not just saying that because I’m writing a piece of it.

If you’re on the fence, here are a couple reasons to consider jumping into the kickstarter.

1. If you’re planning on buying the game eventually, it’s cheaper to buy it now.

2. If you know you’re going to want to try it later, chipping in early means they’ll be able to make it an even better game. More development money means more content.

3. If a healthy number of my readers rush over and jump onboard, I get to look kinda cool to the developers. They’ll think things like, “Oh, maybe we didn’t make a horrible mistake bringing that Rothfuss guy in.”

4. You have to give these guys credit for supporting Worldbuilders. That’s mighty damn nice of them.

5. This is the first step in my extended master plan. If this goes well, it means we’re *much* more likely to see a Kingkiller game. More importantly, a Kingkiller game I’ll be able to have a direct hand in. Personally, I think that would about a thousand flavors of awesome.

Later Space Cowboys, I’m off to sleep. I’ve got a story to finish tomorrow….

pat

This entry was posted in concerning storytelling, cool news, side projects, Stories about stories., Tales from the Con, The Story Board, video games, videos. By Pat150 Responses

150 Comments

  1. Xayl
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:24 AM | Permalink

    This is the coolest thing I have heard all week and I am Immeasurably happy you are doing this.

  2. Bronnen
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:27 AM | Permalink

    I was planning on funding the kickstarter beforehand, but now knowing that you’re going to be part of it, I funded it as soon as I had clicked on the link.

    One of my dreams is to be a game writer, if you end up making a King killer game, I hope you’ll ask your fans for help, I’m sure there is a lot of untapped potential among your fanbase.

  3. Kiba
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:27 AM | Permalink

    I’m a one-note something or other. But this story can’t help but remind me of how refreshed Joss Whedon was going back to post on The Avengers after working on Much Ado. To get the real work done, we’ve got to let ourselves play. Important to remember. Thanks, Pat!

  4. colettak
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:27 AM | Permalink

    I just want to say you’re awesome, Pat.

    Seriously. Unfortunately I never played the original Planescape: Torment. I think it was a couple years before I started playing PC games. But listening to you talk about it on The Story Board made it sound awesome. Not just awesome, actually, but exactly what I’m looking for in a game.

    When he asked you to do part of the story for the game, I was giddy. Having never played the original, and not even having you confirm that you would do it, I jumped onto the kickstarter right when it went live.

    So, the point is, just the hope that you would do a small part of this game, and the clear excitement you had for it, made me to back this project. Between this and Worldbuilders and swag and books, you have to be responsible for a big chunk of my disposable income. And somehow I feel sad that I don’t spend more.

    Have fun creating the game. Have fun writing. And keep being awesome.

  5. Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:28 AM | Permalink

    I never played the original game . Now however I need to try it out just because it really makes no sense to play the sequel before the original game. A game where my favorite author is involved, I’m playing that game, period. Oh well, need to go out and find the original game somewhere under a log. Bye!

    • Amstrad
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 1:38 PM | Permalink

      Keep in mind the new game isn’t a true sequel to the original Planescape: Torment. They don’t have the licensing rights or anything. What we’re getting is a game in the spirit of the original.

      That said, http://www.gog.com/ is selling the original for 10bux.

      • Posted March 24, 2013 at 4:59 PM | Permalink

        What he said. x2.

      • Posted March 25, 2013 at 4:14 AM | Permalink

        Ah, yes. Ofcourse it’s not a sequel. It hadn’t sunk in yet when I wrote the post though. However, I’m still playing the Original just to be able to see just how much of the spirit they succeed to bring into this shiny new game. :)

  6. CancerKiller
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:30 AM | Permalink

    The game sounds awesome.

    Glad that you got the writing mojo flowing too. I’ve run into the same thing and getting back to making the work fun makes it not be work anymore.

  7. jackpyke
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:39 AM | Permalink

    @fyrko

    The game is ‘spiritual successor’ to Planescape, not a direct sequel. You won’t be missing out on characters or plot if you don’t get the chance to play it first.
    Although if you do find the time, it’s easily available on gog.com

  8. jpylus
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:41 AM | Permalink

    I keep saying I’m not going to up my pledge any further for this game, and then they keep adding amazing stretch goals. Roooooothfuuuuuuussss!!1 *shakes fist at the sky*

  9. jasealderson
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:43 AM | Permalink

    What?!?! This is amazing!

    Absolutely loved Torment, it’s still one of my favourite games ever. I downloaded it from GoG a few months back and it still holds up. Unfortunately it will never be the same for newcomers. The sense of discovery is removed when you can just hit Ctrl Tab and Google a solution whenever you are stuck. I still remember feeling like I was the only one who had discovered that you could get that modron cube to join your party. Good times, who ever said going outside to play was good for you? Someone needs to release a version on the appstore.

    Great to hear you’re involved. I will definitely be pledging now.

  10. Knightrous
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:54 AM | Permalink

    Pat, this is awesome news, I jumped on the Torment kickstarter on day one; yep, one of the many, many peeps that helped it blow through its target in a matter of hours. I actually bumped it up to the $39 level, when they introduced that reward option, switching over from getting the game soundtrack to getting the novellas being written for the setting.

    Your involvement just makes the whole endeavour even more exciting.

  11. Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:57 AM | Permalink

    Pat,

    I want you to know that no matter how shitty some of your fans can get and the press of their expectations get, they don’t fucking matter. Those guys are selfish dick holes who don’t know you (and neither do I but I probably read your blog more than they do).

    That being said, you are the man and make sure you are always having fun with work. You get to do something you are passionate about and that matters as long as you keep that passion. The passion shows in your work (part of why I preach your books not just recommend them). So tell any D-bag who whines about book 3 to shove it or come talk to me (I’m a big guy I’ll handle it). And do your thing. When book 3 gets here I’m going to read it. I’m going to wait for hours to get it signed, and I’m going to freaking read it to my kids when I have them.

    That is worth waiting for. P.S. I’m a programmer, I get the whole “writers” block thing, we get it too, but in a different way. Sometimes you just can’t write anything even though you want to. Because it isn’t fun. But whenever I see that I’m doing that I do exactly what you did. I take a step back, try to approach from a different angle, and usually I get something clean and fast that I’m proud of, oh and it works too… sometimes.

    Take it easy pat and I’m kicking into this game.

    Eric,

  12. Anech
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:01 AM | Permalink

    Wow…. I backed right away, back when they still had room on the $20 tier.. The timing of this kickstarter is kind of bad for me, but now I HAVE to up my pledge! This is really awesome!

    Really looking forward to see your brilliant mind at it in a game!

    Thanks pat, take your time with.. everything! And save some time for O&S (=

  13. Constance
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:04 AM | Permalink

    When you say “My readers will be pissed” you mean ‘Those assholes who don’t respect the artist enough to understand the creative process behind brilliant writing.”

    Those of us who adore you will be patient and WANT you to enjoy yourself, so you write more naturally and with joy in your heart. I’d rather wait longer for a happily written novel than get a forced out one sooner.

    That said, Goddammitsomuch, I’m running out of time to play all the awesome games I’ve been Kickstartering! Is that even a word?

  14. JonnyG
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:09 AM | Permalink

    Consider this project backed. A copy of Wasteland 2 along with potential Pat-Rothfuss-Influlenced-Torment-Game? TAKE ALL OF MY MONEY!

  15. Mauro
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:18 AM | Permalink

    Gosh darnit, Pat! I was going to pass this one up, since it’s been so well funded so fast and I’m already spending so much renovating the house for the coming baby, but now that’s just not an option. Even more so considering that I passed up all forms of contribution toward Worldbuilders this year.

  16. Robert Aldrich
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:20 AM | Permalink

    I’ve been a backer of this since the second day. It is awesome that they are doing something now that is so like Torment, but with more than a decade of new tech to get this looking as awesome as the story. Also, there is the Numenera table-top RPG that is coming out this year (previously backed in Kickstarter).

    @Pat – what are the chances of a table top RPG for Kingkiller? I want to play me a Bloodshirt…

    Cheers!

  17. chosan
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:32 AM | Permalink

    Awesome post good thing tomorrow is payday I’ll have to spend some money on this one!

  18. samvimes42
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:39 AM | Permalink

    I also backed on day 2, because the game already sounded awesome. having said that, Best. Stretch Goal. Ever.

  19. lorephoenix
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:41 AM | Permalink

    Why yes, I did punch my fist into the air when I heard about the bast story…. Also, these Torment games seem interesting!

  20. breezie
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:46 AM | Permalink

    One comment:
    Oh My God, Yes.

    And yes, that required a spelling out… OMG just doesnt cut it.

    • pakap
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:49 AM | Permalink

      I’ll go further :

      Oh, my Gods. YES !

      I am over the moon about this. PS:T is one of the best games ever, at least story-wise (let’s be honest here, the actual gameplay kinda sucked, especially the combat), and having Pat contribute to its spiritual successor is…is…it’s fucking awe-inspiringly wonderful, is what it is.

  21. GhostWriter
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:48 AM | Permalink

    Oh Pat -
    I wondered when you’d post about this Storyboard. You see, I’ve been a videogame designer for seven or eight years. Your rant on modern games sounded just like me. I used to *love* games in the 90′s. Like irrational, all consuming love. But now, I hate just about every trite piece of action movie, B-level plot, piece of adolescent male power fantasy that I play. So I don’t play games much anymore – I read books, and I’m trying to write them.

    The problem with Jerry’s “We’re at the helm now” comment…well, try working in the video game industry for a while. It’s soul-crushing.

    I know, I know, “go Indie”. That works well if you’re a college student, or have money in the bank. If you’re pushing 40 with a family… yeah good luck with that. The fact is, most of us in the business are just grunts. We’d love to make games different and better, but our job is to “Make the first third of level three”.

    The director doesn’t ask me what I think.

    I’ts a medium with a ton of untapped potential, but I don’t know if we’ll ever see it. Graphics will get better. There will be tons of crap to “Unlock” and “Achieve”, but it’s been nearly a decade since I played a game that effected me emotionally. Ever play Homeworld? “Everything’s gone. Kharak is burning…” *sob*

    Maybe great writers like you can wake the industry up that their crap excuses for stories won’t cut it for anyone out of their teens. If you do make a Kingkiller game, just promise me you’ll push for it to be something more than mindlessly killing skraelings (sp?) for ten hours.

    Sorry for the rant, this Storyboard touched a nerve.

    • Posted March 24, 2013 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

      “If you do make a Kingkiller game, just promise me you’ll push for it to be something more than mindlessly killing skraelings (sp?) for ten hours.”

      This I solemnly promise.

    • Flynn
      Posted March 28, 2013 at 1:43 AM | Permalink

      >There will be tons of crap to “Unlock” and “Achieve”, but it’s been nearly a decade since I played a game that effected me emotionally.
      >Ever play Homeworld? “Everything’s gone. Kharak is burning…” *sob*

      Like Jerry said, “It’s like complaining how there’s no good music anymore, but only listening to the radio.”

      There are more amazing games being made (by any definition) than any time in the past. I really believe this. I’m sad to see people missing out.

      Dear Esther. Kentucky Route Zero. Braid. Thomas Was Alone. 30 Flights of Loving. To the Moon. Journey is the most effecting game I have played in TWO decades.

      And not just indy games: The Walking Dead is brilliant. Bioshock Infinite, sure a straight shooter gameplay-wise, but astonishing world building and themes. The Mass Effect series gets a lot of guff but contains some scenes that had me genuinely emotional scenes (ex: Thane and Mordin finale).

  22. Daniel
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:49 AM | Permalink

    This is awesome, you are awesome. I’ve been excited about this kickstarter since day one and hearing that one of my favorite authors is on board makes me want to throw more money at them. In fact, I just bumped up my pledge to 275 so I can get a copy of the collector’s edition and hopefully you could sign it at some point.

    You can tell the developers that you are already more than $150 worth of cool.

    • Posted March 24, 2013 at 5:13 PM | Permalink

      They just e-mailed me, asking if I’d be willing to sign things. I told them I was fine with that…

      • Thunderborn
        Posted March 30, 2013 at 10:41 AM | Permalink

        Hehe you could really spice up thier kickstarter if you offered some of your things Pat! A certain ring comes to mind.

  23. Jaren Kross
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:59 AM | Permalink

    I just wanted to mention that I squee’d throughout this post. This is super exciting. And I’m glad playing has been a refresher for you. Already pledged a bit for the game, can’t hurt to do some more now.

  24. Jay Merin
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:12 AM | Permalink

    Congrats, Patrick. Hope you have a blast writing for Torment!

    “Updated my pledge.”

  25. Matthew MacNish
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:14 AM | Permalink

    This may be the coolest thing that has ever happened. All of a sudden, I’m 19 again, and the sun is coming up as I wander, as The Nameless One, through Sigil.

  26. dwattsvt
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

    I’m curious what Pat would think of the storytelling in a game like Dark Souls?

  27. ts
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

    This is truly terrific news. I was already backing this game, as excitedly as everyone else, but this has caused me to increase my backing. A favorite author working on a favorite game series? Yep. Keep up the awesome work, Pat, I’m so glad you had such a wonderful opportunity present itself to you! You earned it.

  28. SporkTastic
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:42 AM | Permalink

    I, no shit, just found this a few weeks ago. F**KING love that I can play it on my current OS.

    http://www.gog.com/gamecard/planescape_torment

    And Pat, this just goes even further toward proving your awesomeness is, indeed, mighty.

    • SporkTastic
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:48 AM | Permalink

      I should say, I still own a physical copy…that reads like I’d somehow managed to exist as an RPG gamer without it.

  29. romangoro
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:01 AM | Permalink

    For the record and for that “looking cool with the developers”, I backed the project after watching the video, and I’ve downloaded and I’m playing the original game (and I’m seeing why you loved it).

    I’ll probably rise my pledge to push us closer to your involvement.

  30. xaviaceto
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:13 AM | Permalink

    I’ve been considering giving to the new Torment game and this definitely kicks it for me. One of my favorite new writers working on my favorite genre of gaming? I can’t say no to that. Definitely worth waiting for Doors of Stone so you can have some fun.

  31. Keith
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:40 AM | Permalink

    Pledged 75 bucks – now I will have a credit as a video game developer! Nice.

    Time to update my resume…

  32. akrreh
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:49 AM | Permalink

    I had to register an account just to say: Oh yeah!
    I already pledged as soon as PayPal was available, but only now i am really REALLY exited for the game!

  33. Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:52 AM | Permalink

    One of my friends came to me today and said, “Behold! There comes a new Torment game and Pat Rothfuss shall be involved!”

    To this I replied, “To whom do you speak? Listen well, for I will tell you the truth of all things. The sparrow neither sows nor reaps, and yet can joyfully sing every morning for what it finds full formed in the world. In much the same way have I been a backer since before the project funded.”

    However, as the wise man who has found a silver coin and discovered that, with but a bit more digging, he might find gold as well, so too have I upped my pledge.

  34. Emyrs
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

    Can’t wait!!
    I was on the bandwagon the first I heard of a new Torment! Now it’s going to have Pat as well! pure unadulterated awesomeness.

  35. rdrjr
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    I backed it just because I laughed at the information for one of the stretch goals:

    “Colins Apology (Part 1): Colin McComb will issue a video apology for the most embarrassing work of his career: 2nd Edition D&Ds Complete Book of Elves”

    I think that was one of the only complete books I had, and that encouraged me to not buy others.

  36. Theyis
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 12:32 PM | Permalink

    Okay, already pledged too much, but now I upped it. I have not been this excited about a game since… well, ever…

    Also, now my name will be in the game… :)

  37. chuckles73
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 12:37 PM | Permalink

    Man, it sounds like you’re trying to justify this to us… As if you being happy wasn’t justification enough. (also us getting a new Torment game with you in the writing credits)

  38. Rahl
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

    Dear Pat,

    My life has just got a little brighter, not that it was dark before mind you..
    Would you mind letting us know what anthology the Bast story is in once its out?

    8)

    • Posted March 24, 2013 at 5:16 PM | Permalink

      Don’t worry. When we have more information about that, I’ll fill everyone in here on the blog….

  39. Marko
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 12:49 PM | Permalink

    Hi Pat,

    I know my words cannot weigh more than Betsy’s, but speaking as your Serbian editor (and a fan), I can only say: go for it!

    We have all been taught that good things come with time, so we’re more than happy to wait for the book, but opportunities like writing for (and with the team!) of Torment is an experience of a lifetime! Knock yourself out.

    Plus, you just made me to pledge higher on the kickstarter. I just hope Colin doesn’t follow through on the stretch goal for you not writing the game idea ;)

  40. transmet2033
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

    I was not going to back this game, even though I had backed their wasteland 2 kickstarter. You are reason enough to give them my money now.

  41. Neville Longbottom
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 1:29 PM | Permalink

    I am pledging most kickstartingly….

    And in regards to a Kingkiller game…..I’m not much of Magic User myself, but I AM an inveterate crafter. So you’ll be able to find me in the Fishery for sure.

  42. Dyne17
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 1:31 PM | Permalink

    As soon as I saw your post about it, I had to support the project. And with you on board, I couldn’t talk myself out of getting one with Beta Access. >_<

  43. Kalam
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 2:01 PM | Permalink

    I don´t know about you guys, but I was watching the hole video with a really stupid smile on my face all along. And this is because I´m a HUGE fan o videogames and this “folk” that was just enjoying a awsome conversation. I can´t wait for the next one.
    For the record I´ll try some of the games metioned, some, because most of them I´ve already have.

    Mr. Rothfuss, please, be patient and don´t rush anything. We can wait, and don´t listen to those who can´t. Enjoy of your family, your friends, videogames, movies… Anything that make you happy because that would make a great third book.
    A huge hug from Spain. (sorry for my mistakes, I don´t speak english as well as I´d like to)

    • Posted March 24, 2013 at 5:19 PM | Permalink

      A hug back from the US.

      Your English is fine. Much better than my Spanish….

  44. murillo
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 2:05 PM | Permalink

    Did you sad a game about Taborlin the great?Because i think that you sad that,if you didn’t you should!

    A game about Taborlin the great!Run to the hills!

  45. Posted March 21, 2013 at 2:12 PM | Permalink

    I’m in!

    Maybe the sense of play I’ll get playing the game that gave you a sense of play writing it will help me write the writing I’m playing at…

    Or something.

  46. Holmelund
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 3:08 PM | Permalink

    Even if i did´nt knew what Planescape Torment was and even if it sucked, I would still back this project just by the slim chance that a Kingkiller computer game might have a shot at a later date due to Pat´s affiliatino with this.

  47. Doctor
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 3:40 PM | Permalink

    Sounds fantastic, but does anyone have an idea of the system requirements? I don’t want to pre-purchase something that I can’t play w/o buying a new computer.

    • Theyis
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 6:01 PM | Permalink

      They will probably be quite modest. They simply won’t have the budget to go all out with hyperrealistic graphics. An isometric rpg won’t need the computing power of the latest Assassin’s Creed, especially if they go with prerendered backgrounds.
      Also, they won’t want to have high requirements precisely because of the reason you are giving…

      • Posted March 24, 2013 at 5:20 PM | Permalink

        That’s my thought too.

      • Posted March 25, 2013 at 12:53 PM | Permalink

        Agree – they’re making this available on Linux OS which is usually pretty lightweight. I run my computer on a dual boot so I can use Windows and Linux, never ran into problems from the Linux side.

        I was actually really impressed they’d be putting it out on this platform, almost everyone in the gaming industry ignores Linux users.

        Though it depends on what you are running as a computer, I’d guess anything with a dual core and 2gigs of ram could play it. I played MMO’s like The Secret World on such a computer and though it sorta sucked because those games are intense graphics, it still played. Linux is free so operating systems wont hold you back at all.

      • cerevor
        Posted March 27, 2013 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

        I still hope it’ll be hellishly beautiful, as the concept art and also Projet Eternity is giving cause to hope. The current capabilities for good design are immense in any case, with or without pre-rendering. It’s almost worth the the Kickstarter projects alone to see something done in that way for once.

  48. BalorNG
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 4:10 PM | Permalink

    Greetings!
    I now this might be inappropriate (and unlikely), but can you somehow drag Brandon Sanderson into this, too? You know him personally, and on good terms. I bet he loves Torment too.

    Truth be told, I value his work more then yours for now, but to be fair, his first two books were not something I would die for… but his second and third Mistborn books turned it into something much greater then sum of the parts.
    I anxiously hope that I am right in my expectations, and your third book would be similar to what second Mistborn book was to Sanderson.

    Anyway, I’m already a backer, but your your duet with Sanderson (on top of Ziets et all) would surely bring LOADs of backers, money and, above all, very high quality stories and characters, and I’ll gladly up my pledge up to 500$ – even if it would force me to borrow money.

  49. JFSOCC
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 4:40 PM | Permalink

    I’d already pledged, but your involvement makes me very happy!

  50. Posted March 21, 2013 at 5:10 PM | Permalink

    Thanks for the heads up, I was waiting to see if you’d decided to write for the game before I made my decision about supporting it. Never played Planescape – think I might have been a bit young for it, but that screenshot does look real nice.

    I’m usually more into MMO’s – but I’ll break stride for this. LOL. Unless I’m horribly misinformed and it will be in said format.

    Anyway – didn’t see anyone ask in the comments yet (which I admittedly skimmed) but what is this Anthology you speak of?

    I think you did right by doing a Bast story, I’ve met and talked with a ton of KKC Fans and I’ve never met a single one who wasnt horribly curious about his character. I think he may also have some of the most interesting and wildest speculation surrounding him LOL.

    Anywho – I’m sure you’ll tell us eventually but the anticipation is starting to corrupt my soul….

    Praying Unfettered hits my doorstep in the next couple months.
    Oh and Thanks for the Long Blog! I’ll shut up now.

  51. tanis0
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 6:03 PM | Permalink

    I’m planning to join this kickstarter, but I’m hesitant to do so right now because they keep new packages and new stuff to existing packages. I don’t want to miss out on something cool — I’d be really upset if Pat wrote a novella but I didn’t get it because I chose the wrong package.

    I think they’d have been better served by having all of their supporter levels be “everything above PLUS…” (though I’m ok with two tracks for physical vs. digital) alongside their a la carte stuff. Right now, you need to consult two fairly complex charts just to figure out which package you want, and then you still might miss out on something cool which is added later. I think this is hindering them since people like me are refraining for now and may forget later. (PS: Pat, you should remind us a few days before this ends. :D )

    • lethe777
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 6:31 PM | Permalink

      You can change your pledge level at any time in the settings :-) (or even remove it, if you so desire)

      • tanis0
        Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:35 PM | Permalink

        Thanks for the reply. Not having used Kickstarter before, I wasn’t aware of that. I’ll probably still wait a bit, but I feel less like I need to wait until the last minute now. :)

    • zusias
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:07 PM | Permalink

      In my opinion, most of their reward tiers do seem to be “everything above plus” after you get over branching between all digital vs physical goods, other than very specific high tier rewards. I’d say the other reason to consider pledging earlier is there are still a few tiers of pledges that are limited and the same rewards will be more expensive when they’re gone.

      • tanis0
        Posted March 22, 2013 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

        Specifically, check out the differences between the digital tiers at $35, $39 and $45 tiers. The latter two both leave out something in the previous tier. My point is just that’s it’s overly complicated and for no good reason imho.

        They could have simplified it a lot by including some of that in a la carte packs. IE, buy the $28 tier, then add the soundtrack / artbook pack for $7, the novella pack for $11 and / or Wasteland 2 for $17. Now it’s more intuitive and we’ve simplified 4 tiers down to 1. I know that stuff is already available a la carte for higher prices (which is fine), but I’m just trying to illustrate my point that the way they structured this adds a level of complexity which isn’t necessary or fun — which is an issue when you are trying to sell me on how good of a game designer you are btw.

  52. Gustavo Munoz
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 6:18 PM | Permalink

    This was surprisingly fun, it felt like the interesting gaming conversations I never have because all my friends play is COD, haha.

    Well, if anyone reads this post and is curious about JRPGs ( that sadly got left out from this Storyboard ) the Shin Megami Tensei series would be the best choice for solid writing and gameplay ( Nocturne and Persona 3 are my personal favorites )

    Also, I find it odd that Dragon Age : Origins wasn’t mentioned. really, really good game, and the codex is as enormous as it is good.

  53. Brady Dill
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 6:35 PM | Permalink

    Brandon Sanderson has experienced this too. He makes sure to write a fun little side project between epics so as to not burn out. Honestly, his side projects are just as fun as the epics.

  54. HeatherTristan
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 6:59 PM | Permalink

    Coming Out. My name is Heather Tristan, and I love this stuff.

    This is the first time I have posted on your blog, although I have been reading it since I finished your books shortly after Wise Man’s Fear came out. Part of the reason I haven’t commented before is my understanding that you generally interact with a culture I
    a) don’t understand
    b) didn’t really know existed until I read your blog for the first time.

    I wanted you to know what you have done to me! I have led an unremarkable life. I have a university degree in English and History. I worked (a long time ago) as a technical writer cranking out manuals and handbooks and textbooks and travel guides. I am a stay-at-home mom with two kids and I spend most of my time cooking, cleaning, shuttling the kids to a vast array of activities, and participating on various committees and clubs. I have never played a video game on my computer (except The Sims in college) and until this summer, I had never played a game on a PlayStation either (although we did own one so my husband can play Soccer video games and so we could watch Blu-Rays). I didn’t read any contemporary fiction at all except for some chick lit (funny stuff, not icky romances) and stuck with the classics only for entertainment. I had never read a science fiction or fantasy novel except for The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter. And then, somehow, I came across your book. I’m not sure how it happened, but it feels like Providence.

    I still cook and clean and take the kids to ballet and violin and tae kwon do (etc. etc.) but my life is different now. Thanks to your recommendations (and an insatiable need for more after reading your books) I have discovered an entire world of fiction I always tiptoed past with trepidation in the bookstore. I loved the Mistborn books, and Game of Thrones stole several months of my life. I went to visit the US last summer and watched my brother play a game on his PlayStation called Skyrim. It was captivating, but intimidating. When I returned home, I ordered it with a secret sense of shame on Amazon and begged my husband not to tell any of my friends. I was hooked.

    Now, late at night, in the gloom of my secret life, you can find me lurking in the glow of Firefly and Buffy and Star Trek and Douglas Adams and The Wheel of Time and an endless stream of media I don’t tell any of my friends about. I DO tell everyone I meet about your books. I even buy them copies if they aren’t fast enough about reading them. Your books are the gateway drug to an addiction I would love to share with some of the moms at the playground or Tae Kwon Do. And your blog is a new community (one that might reject me because half of the time I have no idea what you guys are talking about) that can understand my love of all these things even if my fellow moms can’t.

    And now you are involved with a computer game. I’ve never played a “real” computer game. I have a Mac (I understand that many people who enjoy computer games have PCs(?)). And yet, and yet… anything you are involved with or endorse is likely to be something I will love, as it has been in so many cases (do I need to point out how weird this is when I tend to land on the “prim and proper, church-going, politically and socially conservative” end of the spectrum? I don’t even curse!). What am I to do? Shall I buy a PC I won’t know how to use just so I can try this game? That’s unlikely, but I might try that trick where you can run your Mac like a PC. Will that be necessary? Will someone like me even be able to survive in a game loved by people who have been playing games for ages? I won’t know what the heck I am doing. Oh, Mr. Rothfuss – what have you done? And yet, I know that I will be inexorably pulled deeper into this strange new world to be transformed, and I kind of love that I don’t know what else will happen.

    My name is Heather Tristan, and I read Fantasy books and watch ridiculous television and play a role-playing video game. And I want more.

    • Posted March 21, 2013 at 7:05 PM | Permalink

      Heather you rock!!!!!

    • Gustavo Munoz
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 7:14 PM | Permalink

      I just made my first post here a few minutes ago as well, and I came across your post.
      Isn’t it interesting how one book can drive your life into a sweet addictive madness?
      You have stumbled into a huge, diverse, and interesting world. enjoy the ride : )

      P.S: Don’t worry, the game will work on Mac as well, so you shouldn’t have problems playing it.

      • HeatherTristan
        Posted March 21, 2013 at 7:40 PM | Permalink

        I went to kickstarter and figured, hey, it works on Mac – let’s do it. And chipped in my bit. Eeeek – watch out computer games, here I come.

    • Knightrous
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 7:53 PM | Permalink

      Heather, I would like to make a suggestion, if I may? Don’t keep these new found fandoms to yourself, tell your friends and fellow parents, you might just open some of their eyes, too.

    • tanis0
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:51 PM | Permalink

      Hi Heather! Welcome to the party! I would second Knightrous’s advice not to keep it a secret. Everything is more fun when you can share it with out people. There’s nothing to be ashamed of either. If people make you feel awkward about it, just point out how much time they spend watching Dancing with the Stars or reading about Hollywood breakups. :P

      On the video game side, don’t be intimidated. Since you have a Playstation 3, I would suggest getting your feet wet with a game called Heavy Rain. It’s a few years old and you should be able to pick it up used for next to nothing. It’s not fantasy, but it’s got the most engaging story I’ve seen in a video game and there’s basically no way to lose, even if characters die. :) Also, don’t be afraid to play games on easy mode — that’s what it’s there for. All that matters is that you have fun.

    • Corsairs
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:39 PM | Permalink

      Heather, I’m right there with you. I am making my first posts on Pat’s blog, inspired by the happy news that he will soon be joining the “Torment” writing team. Like you, I have been inspired by Pat’s books. I will happily pledge to “Torment” if for no other reason than the fact that inXile will be donating to Pat’s Worldbuilders charity. But make no mistake: Pat’s involvement definitely has peaked my excitement for this game. I hope you enjoy it; I don’t think Pat will steer you wrong!

    • HeatherTristan
      Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:09 PM | Permalink

      Thanks so much, you guys. I am realizing that not only do I need this, but my friends need this too. I’m sure tons of you know how dull it can be to re-cycle the same annoying set of conversations: to vaccinate or not, homeschool (Classical or unschool) or invest in the public education system to re-invigorate it, will scheduling a child in golf make him better at violin (true story), is it okay to encourage a preschooler to eat paleo, blah blah blah.

      We NEED to be able to discuss Jaime’s one-handed pathos, or Denna’s commitment/dependency issues, or how good it feels to slay a dragon as a magical lesbian elf-assassin after hearing a tuneless twinkle twinkle little star 4000 times in one day and reading “Will You Be My Friend” until your eyeballs melt. My friends need this stuff, and I am withholding the cure for the Mommy wars (I hate that expression) out of a (hopefully) unfounded fear of rejection.

      Do we seriously need to talk about what coupons we can find for organic spinach? Okay, probably yes. But we also need to talk about how much I love Data (the android, not just information in general, although I guess I love that too), and and how badly I need a metalmind when it comes to helping the kids with their math homework and how sad I was when I watched the last episode of Enterprise (no judging!) and how awesome the comments on Patrick Rothfuss’s blog are.

      Thanks you guys. Not only is Patrick Rothfuss the world’s best living author, but he has attracted a truly marvelous and uniquely inclusive coterie.

      • Sandhya
        Posted March 24, 2013 at 1:24 AM | Permalink

        Enjoyed your story so much! I am almost 67 years old, a nurse by profession and have always loved science fiction and fantasy, but until I met Pat, read his books, I did not know about this huge culture. The greatest joy of my “later years” is I have found myself and my peers. Went to my first comicon just this month…and found my soul mates. Welcome to the party. This party includes total acceptance of each other, even if you are different!

    • Syros
      Posted March 22, 2013 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

      Hi, Heather! I’ve just registered here to tell you that I’m really touched and amazed at your story! So cool and inspiring to see your “coming out” here. You’ve got exciting times ahead! Rock on and enjoy every minute of the ride!

  55. Posted March 21, 2013 at 7:00 PM | Permalink

    I’m so glad u decided to do this. This is the type of creative opportunity that you should never pass by. Your writing holds a special place in my heart. Sure, I’m psyched for the next book, nope I’m not a gamer, but as I was reading your blog, I kept thinking, please let him decide to do this. Have fun with it xx

  56. kel4gt
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:07 PM | Permalink

    I love the game and now I want to know your stories too :)

  57. Little My
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:10 PM | Permalink

    Unrelated to this blog – someone was asking Lev Grossman on Reddit how important he thought it was for authors to be involved in social networking, like Twitter. He responded, “I don’t honestly know. But Twitter is one of the few things I’ve found that actually reliably puts the word out about my books, in a way that causes people to end up buying it and reading it. There are writers (like say China Mieville) who don’t bother with social networking and succeed anyway. So it’s not an ABSOLUTE necessity. But it sure as hell doesn’t hurt. (Top three ways people say they found my book: Twitter, NPR, and Patrick Rothfuss mentioned it on his blog.)”

    That last one is definitely how _I_ found his books.

  58. SirCrovax
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 8:14 PM | Permalink

    Damn you Pat, now I’ll have to increase my pledge in the game, this is an offer I cannot reject!!.

    Hope that the goal is achieved, so you delay book three another year :D

  59. TangentialMind
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:15 PM | Permalink

    What an opportunity! Great decision. We love you.

  60. Lastasis
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:37 PM | Permalink

    “I decide I’m going to write a story about Bast.”

    squealed. It sounded inhuman and terrifying.

    But, yes! This is amazing! Glad to hear you got your mojo back, as well as taking the initiative to take some play into your work schedule, sir~

    Being an animation student close to graduation, a comic artist, freelancer and intern for a game company, the concept of getting close to burning out and the creative juices run low isn’t new to me, so neither is the importance of adding fun to your regiment.

    Good on you, and happy writing and play making!

  61. Corsairs
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 9:49 PM | Permalink

    A lot of people here are backing “Torment” because of Pat’s involvement. I’m going the other direction. I was already a “Torment” backer when I heard the news that Pat would join the writing team if and when the project hits $3.25M in pledges. My excitement over the news has led me here.

    Pat’s books were a revelation to me. I have enjoyed books all my life, yet I have hardly read a more realized world than Kvothe’s. The level of care and passion poured into “The Kingkiller Chronicle” is plainly evident. I try to keep that in mind as I begin my own writing project; I hope I can capture even a bit of that spark. Thank you, Pat, for inspiring me to try.

    And may I offer a suggestion? The “Torment” Kickstarter campaign offers a variety of physical rewards to backers at certain tiers. I have to imagine that some Patrick Rothfuss-related swag would entice a number of Rothfuss fans to pledge at a higher tier. Just a though.

  62. zusias
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:01 PM | Permalink

    This update was the last straw for me pledging. A bit of math puts the kickstarter project barely on track to reach 3.25, if it slows down any more over the next two weeks that remain, we might end a hair short of the stretch goal.
    To Pat, you can safely feel vindicated on point 3, the 21st has been their highest new supporter/total donations since day 6, and it has double the new backer/donations average for the past week. Considering this announcement was only made about halfway through the day, I hope the 22nd should also see a nice jump.
    Also, I’m sorry to hear so many people making a fuss about Pat working on something that he thinks he’ll enjoy. Even if this project isn’t something to clear his head and the only result is that he takes a month or two off from book 3 to work on this, play the game and you can experience a story that Patrick Rothfuss wanted to tell. Isn’t that why we’re all here? We love the stories that Patrick tells, and I’m more than happy to trust him with any story he wants to tell, even… maybe especially… if that’s in a video game where I can interact with that story.

  63. MottSpott
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:04 PM | Permalink

    Yessssssssssssss!!!!!
    Also also also! Did you check out the end to Minecraft? You really ought to. Here it is. BAM!

    http://www.minecraftwiki.net/wiki/End_Poem

  64. Howland
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 10:21 PM | Permalink

    I started Planescape Torment years ago but never finished it. I might have to do that.

    I’m not sure if I can post a picture so I’ll just link to it. It makes fun of another of Pat’s favorite games, but its funny and very true.

    http://img.gawkerassets.com/img/18gs0f46auba2jpg/original.jpg

  65. deadeyemax
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 11:20 PM | Permalink

    If you are interested in narratives in games I encourage you to check out The Stanley Parable. Only takes 8 minutes to “beat” and is worth more of your time than that.

    If you don’t want to bother with downloading and installing it you can watch a full playthrough here.

  66. tikijoe
    Posted March 22, 2013 at 12:27 AM | Permalink

    Pat, you’re such a damn good person. You balance so well what we, your readers, want from you, with whom we need you to be, and what you feel you need to do. You’re a real Big Damn Hero. Strip away your enormous literary prowess, and you’re still a truly good man with the charisma to spread it to the masses. Thank you for being this man. Thank you for doing what you do. And, selfishly, thank you for giving us the works you create.

  67. Posted March 22, 2013 at 1:46 AM | Permalink

    I take full credit for this revelation and all subsequent developments.

    You are welcome.

    • Posted March 22, 2013 at 8:08 AM | Permalink

      Except for the airplane bit and the tough ex-cop bit and the coolness and the curling of the toes and despite the line being ‘…you bastard. Sense of play’ instead of ‘fists with your toes’, I feel EXACTLY like John McClane right now.

  68. XETWS
    Posted March 22, 2013 at 7:50 AM | Permalink

    Oh my.. Sincerely Mr. Rothfuss, you caused a tingle in my left temporal lobe and excitment in my limbic system, everytime you have mentioned Book Three and the Bast story.

  69. Tazin
    Posted March 22, 2013 at 8:04 AM | Permalink

    It’s been so long since I’ve gotten the goosebumps from the Internet. . . You are fucking awesomeness. Torment was amazing . . . One of those games that forms a part of your education later on. I want my children to experience Torment just like i want them to read Tolkien, or Rothfuss for that matter.
    “What does it take to change the nature of a man?”

  70. xungan
    Posted March 22, 2013 at 8:38 AM | Permalink

    I was onboard with the Kickstarter before hearing of your Involvement, now I’m doing a happy Dance!!! Woot :)

  71. persnicketyjen
    Posted March 22, 2013 at 11:02 AM | Permalink

    I’m so excited that the Pat Rothfuss stretch goal for Torment: ToN is actually happening! (So excited that I’m officially breaking out of lurker-dom!)

    I’ve been playing videogames since I was old enough to hold the controller, but I never played the original Torment. And if I weren’t an avid fan of “The Story Board,” it might have stayed that way… so thank you! After watching the Google Hangout, I immediately logged into Kickstarter and backed the project. And you can bet I’ll be purchasing the original title on Steam, too! :)

  72. wageaj24
    Posted March 22, 2013 at 5:48 PM | Permalink

    Pat,

    As a member of the University of Wisconsin–Green Bay’s Gamers Club. Every Spring we host a convention called Chaoticon. This year is is Chaoticon 22. Taking place from April 19-21. I was wondering if you could send a signed copy of a book or shirt that we could raffle off. I’ve been stuffing the suggestion box to get signed copies of stuff you’ve signed for ages (I already own both Hard-carvers signed, but who wouldn’t want more!!!!).

    Also to anybody in the Green Bay area, the convention is open to anyone.
    If you see this Pat, please contact me at wageaj24@uwgb.edu.

    Thanks,
    Andrew

    Excerpt from Chaoticon info:
    We are a yearly convention held in Wisconsin on the campus of UW-Green Bay. We hold the convention as a fundraiser for the Gamers Club, and also just for the sake of having a great, affordable, local gaming convention.
    Friday:
    Students-Free/Community-$3
    Saturday and Sunday:
    Students-$3/Community-$5
    Weekend Pass:
    Students-$6/ Community-$10

  73. cjshwee
    Posted March 22, 2013 at 7:40 PM | Permalink

    I really enjoyed this post. I don’t know anything about the writing process but I’m glad that you enjoy writing. Maybe that’s why your books turn out so well. I have to say I’m excited for the anthology too. Thanks for the constantly entertaining posts.

  74. Sandhya
    Posted March 23, 2013 at 1:39 AM | Permalink

    I am so happy to hear you have found yourself again. I was getting a little worried about you..being sick, hurting yourself and you just looked really tired in your pictures.
    Welcome back Mr Rothfuss..you were missed!

  75. samking
    Posted March 23, 2013 at 3:19 AM | Permalink

    When I first heard that there was going to be a sequel to Planescape: Torment, I thought that it couldn’t get any better. Then, my favorite author declares that Planescape was also his favorite game and decides to join the writing team. Yay!

  76. Kendaren62
    Posted March 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM | Permalink

    Hey Pat! Love the post, and I decided to throw $80 of my Game budget on the project. Not a bad investment considering the 5 points you made, I will be immortalized in the game’s credits, AND we are all $80 closer to seeing a portion of such an awesome game written by such an awesome guy!

    I am excited :D

    Thanks for bringing this to our attention, and a applaud you for having fun! That is really what life is about.

  77. lodi16b
    Posted March 23, 2013 at 3:45 PM | Permalink

    If and when a Kingkiller video game does find itself in my possession, what platform is it most likely to appear? Only PC?

  78. chrisxcore
    Posted March 23, 2013 at 5:53 PM | Permalink

    Hmm…I seem to have read something about finishing a story….hopefully this has some semblance to awesomeness! :D

  79. kyfty
    Posted March 23, 2013 at 7:32 PM | Permalink

    Awesome! Just funded the kickstarter, can’t wait to play the game :)

  80. Michael M.
    Posted March 24, 2013 at 2:09 AM | Permalink

    The time has come. A time to buckle up, gather my courage and stop lurking, but participating in a conversation. To write a comment, one most likely to go by unnoticed. To stop talking like this and move on.

    I’ve been completely unaware about the existence of you and your books up until early 2011. Then I got the first book and kept it on a shelf for quite a while. The premise intrigued me, but I just couldn’t bring myself to start reading it. Maybe it was because I was only recently discovering the Drizzt series, by Salvatore. Fantasy books in general are hard to come by in my country even in English, let alone my native language. I was completely hooked.

    In any case, I finished them. I read through most of the books set in the Forgotten Realms in about one year. I don’t know if that’s a lot or not, but it is to me. Then, I took a much needed break. So I took your first book from the shelf and began reading. Now, I am both disappointed I didn’t start reading it sooner, and delighted.

    You know very well why.

    Unknown to me, about the same time I started reading the first book, the second one was released as well. So, imagine my delight, still unacquainted with your release schedule. Finished reading the first one and immediately began the second one. It felt great. It can be clearly seen how it was originally one book. THE book. As I took my sweet time reading the second book, you posted last year the release date for your third book. I think it was supposed to be around March or May, 2012. My angry, inhuman cries kept neighbors awake, in fear of the unknown. Maybe the launch date was my imagination. I was sure of it when remembering and writing. Now I’m not. Happens all the time, not sure if memory or imagination.

    Now, I do not possess such memory as to properly recall all the sad and joyous moments spent reading your books or waiting for them. It. Both. But a half a story is better than none, right?

    Now that I’ve introduced myself in what I now think is a bit of an unnecessary post, I can congratulate you on becoming part of one of my most anticipated games in a very, very long time. And also to let you know I envy every second you spend there, taking part in the creation of a new world. Just as much as creating a whole new world in the first place. So, without further ado… What in Tehlu’s name is that story you wrote about? I mean, the Bast one.

    Must not let my hunger get the best of me. Oh, but you must. You have to take the chance, precious. No! We mustn’t! But, we needs to know more! Tricksy Patrickses, wait so long he makes us and now drips a little bit of honey to get us all rattled!

    Anyway, since then, I think I’ve read the first book about two or three times, and maybe five times the second one. I’m at my limit. Forgive my outburst. Feel much better now. I’ve been out of touch with your posts, if any, about how things are coming along, so reading this at least set my mind at ease a bit, knowing that things are progressing. The rate at which they do being of little consequence, considering the reward.

    This has evolved in something much larger than I intended, and also much more demanding, immature, rude on my part. Not necessarily in that order.

    Have fun in your future endeavors and keep us posted!

  81. Azurite
    Posted March 25, 2013 at 3:53 AM | Permalink

    I never played Planescape Torment even though my friends praised it to the skies.

    When I today checked in to see the progress of Torment: Tides of Numenera I saw it had passed the 3 million mark they had as maximum the last time I visited.

    I scrolled down to see if there had been any new stretch goals added and suddenly a familiar beard poked out off the screen!

    My initial thought was “Is that Patrick Rothfuss?” and had to read the text hidden in the beard’s shadow to confirm it.

    I was not sure whether or not I should buy this shiny new game, but you sir have just made my mind up!

    I’m glad you found your writing spirit again!
    Oh, and did you just pay homage to Cowboy Bebop?

  82. Theorist
    Posted March 25, 2013 at 5:49 AM | Permalink

    Wow that post was a whole different level of awesome than the usual awesomeness that makes me keep reading your blog.

    First i was super exited that there would be another Torment game, but when I kept on reading I started mumbling: “Join them dammit!”

    Really great and definitely money well spend!

  83. FarmerMonkey
    Posted March 25, 2013 at 9:50 AM | Permalink

    In for the $45 Wasteland 2 + Torment bundle.

    I never played the original Planescape, but Fallout 2 was one of my favorite games of all time. I’m always befuddled at the lack of great turn-based-strategy RPGs available. Japanese RPGs seem to insist on a bizarre combination of turn-based and real-time. American RPGs tend to be real-time, but it really breaks immersion when you need to manage your 50 spells, etc, in the heat of battle (Skyrim, etc). I enjoyed Fallout 3, and New Vegas even more, but neither will hold the classic place in my heart that the old, isometric Fallout 2 does.

    I’m mostly a console gamer these days, so hopefully my laptop is up to the task. I’m able to run the original “Witcher” game on it, and the Diablo 3 Beta ran fine.

    Glad you got your writing mojo back. I introduced the Kingkiller Chronicles to my mother as a Christmas gift, and she blew through both books in a couple of weeks, and now hounds me periodically for any news on the third installment. I’ll pass along the good news at Easter.

  84. rileyes
    Posted March 25, 2013 at 2:38 PM | Permalink

    Maybe spend less time writing these blog post essays and more time finishing book 3. This most recent post was 10 pages of text when I pasted it into Word (I was curious), and this was by no means your longest post. No fucking wonder it’s taking you so long to finish a goddamn book.

    • Posted March 25, 2013 at 6:29 PM | Permalink

      Rude Much?

      He said he was working on the editing in this blog – which suggests the book is at least mostly written. I’d rather wait than get some trash novel he slapped together.

      I mean, in all honesty, if you think you can do better, please do, I’ll probably read it.
      If not, than just stop whining, it has literally no detrimental effect on your life.

      • rileyes
        Posted April 3, 2013 at 11:13 AM | Permalink

        I disagree. If you write a series rather than a stand alone novel, there is an unspoken agreement between author and reader that the author is going to work diligently to finish the series.

        It’s self-indulgent of any author that publishes a series to just casually and slowly write the remaining book(s) while they play at other things in the meantime.

        Writers block, maybe. OCD (and unnecessary) editing, more likely.

        In any case, if he wasn’t able to live comfortably on what he earns from the first two books, he would somehow find the motivation to finish the book. But he doesn’t have to, so he takes his time. It’s selfish, in my opinion. If these were stand alone novels, he wouldn’t owe us anything. But they aren’t, so it’s job to finish what he’s started. Just like it’s my job to get my ass out of bed every morning and go to work all day.

        And an author that forces himself to buckle down and finish a book, even though they might rather be doing other things, doesn’t mean the book wont be good or that it would just be ‘slapped together’. I don’t want to go to work every day, I’d rather go play video games, but the quality of my work each day is still excellent nonetheless. Saying the same doesn’t apply to him is a cop out.

        • Tpyo
          Posted April 3, 2013 at 7:53 PM | Permalink

          Did you root for Ambrose every time he butted head with Kvothe? I personally love the kingkiller series because of how much thought goes into every action or line of dialogue.

        • Colin McComb
          Posted April 3, 2013 at 9:57 PM | Permalink

          When I first met Pat at GenCon, he said a lot of people were bugging him for book 3. I reminded him of Neil Gaiman’s essay, Entitlement Issues, and said, “Pat Rothfuss is *also* nobody’s bitch. Finish the book when it’s finished.”

          I suggest you read the essay as well. Hey, look, it even references Pat by name. Here’s the relevant bit:
          And if you are waiting for a new book in a long ongoing series, whether from George or from Pat Rothfuss or from someone else…

          Wait. Read the original book again. Read something else. Get on with your life. Hope that the author is writing the book you want to read, and not dying, or something equally as dramatic.

          I wish you the best.

    • pacifist
      Posted March 25, 2013 at 6:43 PM | Permalink

      Besides, you can’t expect him to write when all his friends get to go out to eat icecream and have awesome sex on the moon, can you?

  85. Nthouse
    Posted March 25, 2013 at 9:56 PM | Permalink

    I’ve made the beast w/ two backs on the Moon. It wasn’t great.

    It’s much more worthwhile to have become a literary wizard, Sir.

    On another note, three cheers for Numenera, your part in it, and a possible future for a KingKiller game!

  86. kakimena
    Posted March 26, 2013 at 6:13 AM | Permalink

    Pat, once again, you rock. I also enjoyed the orignal Torment game. I’ve just donated on kickstarter. Looking forward to engaging with your writing during the game!

  87. neminem
    Posted March 26, 2013 at 2:26 PM | Permalink

    Congratulations: I just gave them 50 bucks as the direct result of your having a hand in it. (I was just going to buy the game, but I decided I should also buy all the accompanying novellas, too. Now if only they could convince you to write a novella…)

  88. Kai Herbertz
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 4:29 AM | Permalink

    Dear Mr. Rothfuss,

    thanks for the headsup about the spiritual successor of planescape torment. I’ve actually never played torment, but have heard only good things about it, so I will check out this game.

    However, there is one line in your blog that rubbed me the wrong way: “Assuming you have to know what happens before you sit down to write is a rookie mistake.”

    You might be right and I have no way to tell if I am indeed making a rookie mistake (considering that I am a rookie) – nevertheless, I disagree with you on this one. Here is my blog post about the topic (shameless plug, but I’m grateful for any traffic you could send my way and I promise not to mention my blog on here anymore for at least half a year…).

    Keep up the great work and catch you later,

    Kai

    • Posted March 27, 2013 at 1:08 PM | Permalink

      Hey just so you know, you can edit your profile so your name looks all orange and then people can click on it to go to your blog or website.

      Then everytime you comment you basically get a plug for your site. Which is cool. I sometimes like to check out other peoples stuff on here.

      • Posted March 27, 2013 at 5:16 PM | Permalink

        Thanks for the tip, Amber. I never realized that.

        I guess I must have signed up here and filled out the details before February of this year and then never looked again at what pieces of information one could enter.

        Hopefully I’ll comment on here a bit more frequently, especially since I have been and I am reading each of Mr. Rothfuss’s (Patrick’s?) posts.

        All the best,

        Kai

        • Posted March 29, 2013 at 11:40 AM | Permalink

          No problem, thats why I mentioned it, took me a bit to realize as well.

          I think I accidentally clicked on it one day actually…..

          but we’ll pretend I just knew what I was doing, okay?

          LOL! See ya around!

  89. tigeraid
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 8:08 AM | Permalink

    My all-time favourite fantasy/sci-fi author writing on the spiritual successor to my all-time favourite fantasy/sci-fi RPG? *squeal.”

  90. Alonzay
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 9:51 AM | Permalink

    Made an account to add voice to how fantastic this is. Was firmly on the fence vis-a-vis a new Torment game…no longer.

    I am so pleased/envious/affected that it almost makes me want to quit my job and just write, come what may. Almost.

    Very almost.

    -Matt

    • Posted March 27, 2013 at 1:09 PM | Permalink

      LOL! Thats my unemployment plan.

      If I should ever loose my job (Knock on wood that doesnt happen) I planned to just chill for a while and try writing. I’ve been working since I was 16 so I think a little break before getting another job is in order anyway.

  91. Ser Scot
    Posted March 27, 2013 at 4:55 PM | Permalink

    Glad to hear the writtings going well again. Can you tell us what the Anthology the Bast story will be in? I look forward to reading it.

    :)

  92. Flynn
    Posted March 28, 2013 at 7:48 PM | Permalink

    We’re at the helm now. If we see these things we don’t like, it’s our fault. [...] We can’t just point at it and expect the universe to fill it.

    Right on!

    I’m so excited to see you dipping your toes in a entirely new medium!

  93. randal77
    Posted March 29, 2013 at 8:48 AM | Permalink

    Most of the people here are Kingkiller chronicles fans joining the Torment kickstarter, but I’m actually the other way around – I’m a PS:T fan who followed the link from the Torment kickstarter to your blog, and started reading the books a couple days ago.

    I’m about 200 pages into Name of the Wind at the moment, and I’m really enjoying it so far. Glad to hear you’ll be working on Torment!

  94. Azurite
    Posted March 30, 2013 at 3:59 AM | Permalink

    Stretch goal has been met!

    • Little My
      Posted March 31, 2013 at 6:25 AM | Permalink

      Yeah, but what’s weird is that it says the stretch goal is 3.25 million (achieved!), and it says only 3.22 million is pledged. How did that happen? Did it get reached and then folks took back pledges?

      • Umpqua
        Posted March 31, 2013 at 12:12 PM | Permalink

        Many international users cannot use the payment service, Amazon Payments, that Kickstarter uses. So inXile has setup a store that uses Paypal. Paypal Store

        The Paypal payments add another ~$50k to the total.

  95. Hyttenhoof
    Posted March 30, 2013 at 10:44 AM | Permalink

    I was sceptical of torment. The first was my favourite game, period. But the new game had neither the setting, nor had it my idol, Chris Avelonne. Bit work the possibility of him joining, and you already on board, I’ve been convinced to join the kickstarter

  96. jbphemister
    Posted March 30, 2013 at 3:04 PM | Permalink

    BORDERLANDS 2 has some of the best writing of any game I’ve played in a long time. Hope anyone who can appreciate some great writing will check it out.

    • Posted April 1, 2013 at 12:39 PM | Permalink

      I was surprised no one mention Final Fantasy for game stories that were epic and awesome.

      I’m pretty sure my brother only learned to read so he could know what the heck was going on in that game.

      As for awesome storylines in recent games, I have been playing The Secret World, and honestly love the story. I’ll say in MMO’s its easy to forget anything about storyline in the game and just do….whatever….but in this game it all makes sense and is connected and you are a peice of a larger puzzle. Plus investigation missions….talk about complex.

  97. Smokefishlounge
    Posted March 31, 2013 at 9:35 PM | Permalink

    Take your time!

    I for one am happy to have you take whatever time off is necessary to engage your creativity juice maker. While your editor and some fans may froth at the mouth and kick/scream for you to finish the 3rd book; I’d rather you finish it in good time with the highest quality story telling you’ve demonstrated thus far. The main thing that drew me to the King Killer Chronicles was your epic development of characters over both a short and long period of time.

    Whatever made you decide write a story based on telling the whole of a man’s life over a 3-day span?

    Needless to say, keep on doing your thing and we will wait (impatiently for some of us) for Kvothe’s story to pan out.

    BTW: The new Torment game sounds awesome by your description even though I’ve never played them. I’ll check it out.

  98. Hasvers
    Posted April 1, 2013 at 6:15 AM | Permalink

    On the off-chance that you are really painstakingly reading through each of these comments, I would like to say that I really hope that you get to make your own game or influence somewhat the destiny of Torment, because I feel like you are sensitive to some issues that people inside the industry – even good people such as those in the video – may have lost sight of. The main issue is consistency of the narrative: most of the games cited have beautiful writing, but only as vignettes interspersed through a series of actions with which they are at odds.

    In what other medium would some deep father-daughter issues be solved by some stranger going into a mine and killing hundreds of goblins until he finds a trinket that suddenly brings them together – even if in a heartwrenching and beautifully directed cutscene ? The narrative doesn’t make sense globally because the writing is almost always either a pretext or a reward for the player’s actions.

    Exceedingly rare are games, even RPGs, not suffering from this schyzophreny, because someone decided that killing people is what you do in games. Fortunately point & clicks are less affected, and interactive fiction is (IMHO) the only game genre that has truly experimented with storytelling in the past twenty years. To the point of bending relationships between narrator, protagonist and player, or testing the very limits of player impact on the story (Emily Short and Andrew Plotkin are two behemoths). They are almost the only games that tend to take their players for intelligent people – and not merely dexterous or strategically clever ones – and most of them take a few hours to play.

  99. Nick H
    Posted April 2, 2013 at 9:40 PM | Permalink

    I pledged 130$ and wrote a message to the team telling them that the ONLY (its not the only reason but a little fib won’t hurt) reason I paid was because of Pat’s involvement. I know they read those because I received a reply the same day talking about how they were excited to have Pat on the team. So everyone who pledged, let them know Pat influenced you to do so like I did, so he gets more love, $, or input on the game. : )

  100. pacifist
    Posted April 3, 2013 at 10:00 AM | Permalink

    The release date for Torment ToN has been pushed back a couple of months.

    Wonder how many people are screaming at the programmers to stop living and finish their game

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