Castoffs of different species?

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Sithwist
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Castoffs of different species?

Post by Sithwist » March 5th, 2016, 9:58 am

If this has been posted somewhere before, I apologize, it eludes me.

So I had a thought: if I had the ability to build bodies to transfer my consciousness into, I'd totally build bodies of different species than my own at least a few times, to get a different perspective on life. What's the fun in staying purely human for centuries and centuries?

Especially if you're hunted by an ancient foe, you'd think the Changing God would have tried to see if he could somehow gain an advantage by having maybe a stronger body or one with higher reasoning abilities, one with claws, a biomechanical one, or a completely mechanical one.

I'm not saying we should have a choice of race for the Last Castoff or anything (the Changing God might have concluded humans were the best fit - for him or in general), I just think it would be cool if we could meet or hear of castoffs of different races. It also makes me wonder if the different species castoffs would end up with a human mind stuck in an alien body, or if their minds would match that of their species.
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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by anonymous6059 » March 5th, 2016, 11:50 am

Sithwist wrote:If this has been posted somewhere before, I apologize, it eludes me.

So I had a thought: if I had the ability to build bodies to transfer my consciousness into, I'd totally build bodies of different species than my own at least a few times, to get a different perspective on life. What's the fun in staying purely human for centuries and centuries?

Especially if you're hunted by an ancient foe, you'd think the Changing God would have tried to see if he could somehow gain an advantage by having maybe a stronger body or one with higher reasoning abilities, one with claws, a biomechanical one, or a completely mechanical one.

I'm not saying we should have a choice of race for the Last Castoff or anything (the Changing God might have concluded humans were the best fit - for him or in general), I just think it would be cool if we could meet or hear of castoffs of different races. It also makes me wonder if the different species castoffs would end up with a human mind stuck in an alien body, or if their minds would match that of their species.

Since this is in spoilers allowed I'm going to say that I'm not so sure the story of the Last Castoff is the *true* story the game will reveal. What I mean is that perhaps the last castoff is really the only castoff. That he merely transforms his appearance and never actually leaves his shell exactly. I know that someone called the white death exist and I'm just now exploring the story but I wouldn't be shocked to find out that this is going to have a twist for a ending.

Anyway, I think you've got a good idea but who's to say he can create any type of shell he wanted. How does he even makes shells anyway? I am sure its supposed to be some genetic cloning machine or something like that. In that case I'm not so sure it would be built to create any variety of creature. Also you have to wonder how a soul would go from living in a man to a chicken to a lizard-man to a rhino. Maybe soul jumping is limited by species. Ducks might only be able to be ducks and humans might only be able to soul jump into other humans.

I dunno...

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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by Sithwist » March 6th, 2016, 6:53 am

Hm interesting speculation there, but if the Last Castoff was the only castoff, then how would the Endless Battle and the bunch of other bodies walking around with the Changing God's tattoo and claiming to have been born in weird situations, instead of going through the normal growing up process be explained? I'd be surprised if there weren't a twist too, but that one seems a little far fetched and create more problems...

Maybe the Changing God is confined somehow in the kinds of bodies he can create, but he does seem to like experimenting, finding ways to make his bodies stronger, almost indestructible. I doubt his body creation process involves cloning since the castoffs can be of either gender and look so different (Matkina looks nothing like the LCO, and the Changing God Cultists only recognize LCO thanks to the tattoo).

And he isn't 'soul jumping', it seems he can't force out a pre-existing soul and take over a body, he has to create his bodies, empty and inanimate. So you'd think he could probably build a body with a human brain (if that's a requirement), but that doesn't look human otherwise. (Might be easier to put your soul into a human-brained duck than a regular duck body... especially if you want the reasoning abilities to be able to get out again!)
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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by anonymous6059 » March 6th, 2016, 7:15 am

Sithwist wrote:Hm interesting speculation there, but if the Last Castoff was the only castoff, then how would the Endless Battle and the bunch of other bodies walking around with the Changing God's tattoo and claiming to have been born in weird situations, instead of going through the normal growing up process be explained? I'd be surprised if there weren't a twist too, but that one seems a little far fetched and create more problems...

Maybe the Changing God is confined somehow in the kinds of bodies he can create, but he does seem to like experimenting, finding ways to make his bodies stronger, almost indestructible. I doubt his body creation process involves cloning since the castoffs can be of either gender and look so different (Matkina looks nothing like the LCO, and the Changing God Cultists only recognize LCO thanks to the tattoo).

And he isn't 'soul jumping', it seems he can't force out a pre-existing soul and take over a body, he has to create his bodies, empty and inanimate. So you'd think he could probably build a body with a human brain (if that's a requirement), but that doesn't look human otherwise. (Might be easier to put your soul into a human-brained duck than a regular duck body... especially if you want the reasoning abilities to be able to get out again!)
Well what if The Last Castoff just has brothers and sisters? Who's to say that only one Changing God exists. Maybe they are all immortals. I read somewhere that it's believed the endless war broke out because of 2 immortals. I just get the feeling something doesn't add up with the story. The Nameless One finds out throughout the game that he was the one who caused all these different things to happen. In TToN The Last Castoff seems to find out similar things too. I've just got the feeling that when you crash landed on Earth, you hit your head giving you amnesia. Perhaps, only one Last Castoff exists but you're actually him. The others, like Matkina, are simply shells that you once inhabited.

As far as the body hopping goes, anything is possible. The main reason why I'd suspect you'd never get to play other races is because in Planescape you had to be the Nameless One. Its kind of a key part of the game. So being able to jump into the bodies of different races would just distance the game from its predecessor. I guess you could still hope for NPC Shells being different races though.

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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by anonymous6059 » March 6th, 2016, 10:32 am

((Again this might contain multiple spoilers- It could also be a loaded bag of wind))

I've also been rolling around a few other ideas as well. First, why does The Last Castoff really need new Shells if his current one can regenerate? Secondly, Planescape Torment to me had a strong message that immortality is not natural. When Ravel made The Nameless One Immortal he lost his memories. Why? I think its because the moral of PST is that Immortality makes life pointless and without meaning. Eternity isn't something meant for humans consciousness. Perhaps part of the equation to solving Human Consciousness is related to the fleetingness of our existence. Perhaps without mortality our minds would be destroyed by the vastness of time. What's the point of doing anything if you have forever to do it? In PST this amnesia happens immediately. In TToN I think it might of taken thousands of years. NEW IDEA JUST HIT ME!!! Perhaps the fall from the satellite actually starts the process to his recovering his memories!!! (kind of like what happens at the first book in the Chronicles of Amber.)

If that's the case I have to say Good Job Mr. McComb I'll be looking for anything you do in the future. Maybe its just because I happen to stumble on that line of thought that I think its good though....

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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by Sithwist » March 6th, 2016, 11:52 am

Ah ok, I didn't get that you meant the LCO could be the Changing God, at first. That thought crossed my mind as well, although I think it's very unlikely that they chose to go that route, since it would be way too similar to PST. This is a spiritual successor, not a remake. PST set out to answer "What can change the nature of a man?", TTON asks "What does one life matter?", two different questions shouldn't - and maybe can't- be answered with extremely similar stories. Answering "what does one life matter?" when you're only one of many castoffs seems more powerful to me than answering it when it turns out that you're the main guy who created all of them, imo. The website also states that TTON will explore themes of abandonment, which works much better if the main character is not unwittingly the Changing God himself, but was abandoned by him.
anonymous6059 wrote:First, why does The Last Castoff really need new Shells if his current one can regenerate?
There might be tons of reasons for that. Maybe he's vain and gets tired of them, especially after they've been scarred of disfigured (the First Castoff is proof that they can be maimed and disfigured, at least.) Or they grow old (do castoffs age, I wonder?). Not to mention you might be able to "upgrade" your body: who's to say the first iterations of shells were near immortal, like the current ones? (Note the nearly, it's shown right at the outset in TTON that castoffs can die, it's just kind of hard to manage it. You can actually die at the very beginning of TTON, when you hit the ground, try it: choose "dive towards the ground") The First might not be the first of all castoffs, just the first who survived and was nearly indestructible. Maybe that quasi immortality was what the Changing God was aiming for, but got addicted to making shells (that's a thing, I hear plastic surgery is addictive...) and so keeps going, even if he's leaving behind perfectly good bodies. And last but not least, if you have as many enemies as the Changing God presumably does, it might be useful to change your looks to send them on false leads.
anonymous6059 wrote:Who's to say that only one Changing God exists.
That, is a very interesting point.
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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by anonymous6059 » March 6th, 2016, 1:55 pm

Sithwist wrote:Ah ok, I didn't get that you meant the LCO could be the Changing God, at first. That thought crossed my mind as well, although I think it's very unlikely that they chose to go that route, since it would be way too similar to PST. This is a spiritual successor, not a remake. PST set out to answer "What can change the nature of a man?", TTON asks "What does one life matter?", two different questions shouldn't - and maybe can't- be answered with extremely similar stories. Answering "what does one life matter?" when you're only one of many castoffs seems more powerful to me than answering it when it turns out that you're the main guy who created all of them, imo. The website also states that TTON will explore themes of abandonment, which works much better if the main character is not unwittingly the Changing God himself, but was abandoned by him.
anonymous6059 wrote:First, why does The Last Castoff really need new Shells if his current one can regenerate?
There might be tons of reasons for that. Maybe he's vain and gets tired of them, especially after they've been scarred of disfigured (the First Castoff is proof that they can be maimed and disfigured, at least.) Or they grow old (do castoffs age, I wonder?). Not to mention you might be able to "upgrade" your body: who's to say the first iterations of shells were near immortal, like the current ones? (Note the nearly, it's shown right at the outset in TTON that castoffs can die, it's just kind of hard to manage it. You can actually die at the very beginning of TTON, when you hit the ground, try it: choose "dive towards the ground") The First might not be the first of all castoffs, just the first who survived and was nearly indestructible. Maybe that quasi immortality was what the Changing God was aiming for, but got addicted to making shells (that's a thing, I hear plastic surgery is addictive...) and so keeps going, even if he's leaving behind perfectly good bodies. And last but not least, if you have as many enemies as the Changing God presumably does, it might be useful to change your looks to send them on false leads.
anonymous6059 wrote:Who's to say that only one Changing God exists.
That, is a very interesting point.
Well, what bothers me is that the Last Castoff seems to be able to recall memories that range from recent to the beginning of Immortality for The Changing God. I'd understand if the Last Castoff could only recall the memories of The Changing God while he was in his body, but you can recall all of his memories. Next you have the word Anamnesis being used in the game as an ability. The word means: "humans possess knowledge from past incarnations and that learning consists of rediscovering that knowledge within us." The word itself implies that they are your memories from past lives.

If Castoffs age, that would make for a good reason to eventually change bodies. I'd thought that thanks to regeneration aging would take many lifetimes longer than it would for a human (kind of like Wolverine). I think you're right in thinking the Castoffs can die. Perhaps it works in a way similar to The Highlander, by slicing off the head. So I agree the body would need to be replaced every so often, but I still wonder if the Last Castoff is The Changing God.

Another possibility (this is being heavily influenced by the chronicles of amber) is that he isn't the Changing God but he has lived for thousands of years. Maybe, he is like Corwin and now has Anamnesia from the accident. He is remembering the last several thousands of years that his shell has been alive. He would also have brothers and sisters who likewise have been alive for thousands of years. The truth of the Changing God could always remain elusive and unknown. The story would just leave it up to you to speculate on the truth. For instance, I've never come across a "memory" that seemed to be from another shell. Likewise, Mitkina might also be several thousand years old. She might have better memory of her lengthy life or she might be crazy from living for so long.

"What does one life matter." I think it has multiple meanings.
1. What does one life matter when you have thousands of lives to live?
2. What difference can one person actually make that means anything?

I think it deals with the pointlessness of action if you lived forever, had infinite shells to live through. The question actually is relevant to PST's "what can change the NATURE of a man". Since living forever would go against human nature. Eventually one life would become meaningless. A single shell would become like a single day in our life. You could spend thousands of years trying to achieve some important goal. You could spend equal amounts of time getting drunk and high. I think the question is really about Identity and existentialism. It reminds me of one of my favorite Existentialist Films: Groundhog's Day. Again if Mr. McComb actually is going that deep with it then I'm extremely impressed and this might be the most profound, thought provoking game ever made.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anamnesis ... losophy%29
https://philosophynow.org/issues/93/Groundhog_Day

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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by Adam Heine » June 8th, 2016, 6:08 am

I can't say much about everything you're discussing here, but I can say that the Changing God has definitely tried non-human bodies (and therefore left castoffs of other species) at some points in his life.
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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by Sithwist » June 9th, 2016, 3:34 pm

Yeah, the conversation kind of digressed there. That's really cool, thanks for the reply Adam. Hope we get to see a couple in game :)
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Re: Castoffs of different species?

Post by Aramintai » June 13th, 2016, 12:46 am

There's a varjellen castoff among the trio trapped in the clock. So the Changing God definitely wasn't shy of trying different species.
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