Torchlight II is an Action-RPG developed by Runic Games, the sequel of 2009's Torchlight. It was released on September 20, 2012 for the PC, with a Mac version due a few months after. Torchlight II was developed after the success of the first game, with the developers addressing concerns by fans about the lack of multiplayer co-op. They also added a much bigger world, with more random quests and dungeons, and refined gameplay mechanics from Torchlight. Torchlight II will keep the moddability of the first game, and mods can be used in online co-op play with no limits.
Beyond the town of Torchlight lies a world shrouded in adventure and mystery. Guardian-warrior Syl appears in a prophetic dream, summoning the player to the Estherian Steppes. There, the player meets with the Destroyer and soon venture across the continent of Vilderan, an exotic frontier besieged by forces of evil. A discovery unfolds, that the Alchemist, following his conquest of dark ember, disappeared on his quest to defeat the unknown corrupted force responsible for destroying the mystic race of Estherians. Aided by Syl, the remaining Estherian Guardians, and clues left behind by the missing Alchemist, the player will battle a powerful enemy that threatens to unravel the elements of the entire world.
Torchlight II contains three full acts and a boss act, unlike the first game. All playable characters from Torchlight return in Torchlight II, but only as NPCs.
Gameplay in Torchlight II remains largely similar to the first game, with refinements to player skills and equipment and the addition of co-op play. However, the world is much larger in scope compared with the single dungeon Torchlight, with the developers estimating it to be about four times the scale of the first game. Torchlight II features several fully randomized overworld areas, with weather effects, and day and night cycles. The areas generated every time the player enters a new game, with random dungeons, events, and quests (similar to games like Diablo II and Titan Quest). Dungeons are also more randomized than the first game, with more branching paths and dead ends, and look less similar to each other.
There are four difficulty levels in Torchlight II: Casual, Normal, Veteran, and Elite, and hardcore mode also makes a return. All modes are unlocked from the start, and players can switch difficulties easily both in single player and co-op play by leaving and creating a new game instance.
The original three classes from Torchlight have been replaced by four new classes: the Engineer, the Outlander, the Berserker and the Embermage. When creating a character, players can choose their gender for any class, as well as smaller customization choices such has hairstyles and skintone. Players can also choose to hide their helm to show off their heads if they so desired.
Players still earn five attribute points every time they level up, which they can assign to four attributes: Strength, Dexterity, Focus, and Vitality. Strength boosts weapon and critical hit damage, Dexterity improves critical hit and dodge rates, Focus increases mana and elemental damage, and Vitality increases health and shield block.
All classes now have a charge bar mechanic, which fills up as players damage enemies or use certain skills. It will grant the player benefits in battle, and some skills rely on it to boost their effects. The charge bar differs depending on the class played, and charges will decay after a period of inactivity.
Players will still earn a skill point per level, and can gain additional skill points through levels in fame, which they earn completing quests and killing boss monsters. There are now thrity skills per class, with seven active and three passive skills per skill tree. Skills in Torchlight II have a maximum of fifteen levels (compared to ten in Torchlight), and are still unlocked automatically at the prerequisite character level. Players can re-spec their last three skill points spent throughout the game, for a lump sum of gold.
Also changed are the generic passive skills all classes learned in Torchlight; all classes now have unique passives that gives them specialization with their style of play. Passive skills are unlocked at a different rate than the active skills in the tree. All active skills also get additional tier bonuses at ranks five, ten, and fifteen, to reward increased point investments by the player. These tier bonuses do not require additional point investments, and adds new abilities to that skill in addition to existing skill abilities or improves upon an existing ability.
For specific skills, see "Classes".
Loot and Equipment
Item drops are still in Torchlight II, and are still color-coded like in the first game.
- White: An ordinary item. Scrolls, potions, and gems are also displayed in this color.
- Green: An Enchanted item. This item possess a magical enchantment and usually sells for a higher price than ordinary items, and they usually come identified.
- Blue: A Rare item. This item often possess a powerful enchantment or even several different magical properties.
- Gold: A Unique item. This one-of-a-kind item rarely appears in the game, and hold many powerful enchantments. Unique gems are also displayed in this color.
- Red: A Legendary Item. These items can only be found above level 50, and are the best items in the game.
- Purple: A Quest item. These items are not equippable but are vital to many quests. Chest keys are also in this color.
Items sets are still found in Torchlight II, but do not have their own unique color classification (They are usually found under rare items). Equipping other equipment from a same set adds additional bonuses. The number of items in sets varies but some include up to six distinct pieces.
Equipment in Torchlight II often have prerequisites, whether level, attributes, or class. However, level and attribute requirements are now interchangeable. If the player manages to fulfill either a level or attribute requirement, they can wield the equipment despite not fulfilling the other. Also new to Torchlight II are class specific armors, six for each class, for a total of twenty-four. There are a total of eighty-five unique armor sets in Torchlight II.
There are fifteen weapon types in Torchlight II, each with their own different style of attack. Most melee weapons and some ranged weapons deal splash damage, damaging all enemies in an arc in front of the player, with two-handed weapons dealing in a bigger arc and range. Dual-wielding weapons of a similar type also grants players a chance to Execute, attacking with both weapons at once. Increasing Focus and learning certain skills increases this chance.
Some weapons have special augments that adds additional attributes when the player kills a certain number of specific enemy types.
|Melee Weapons||Ranged Weapons|
- Swords / Greatswords (2-handed): Basic melee weapon with no particular quirks.
- Axes / Greataxes (2-handed): More consistent damage numbers (smaller damage range).
- Maces / Greathammers (2-handed): High interrupt and stun chances.
- Polearms (2-handed): Longest reach and splash of all melee weapons.
- Claws: No splash damage but ignores 25% of enemy armor on normal attacks.
- Staves (2-handed): Greater magical damage on normal attacks.
- Bows (2-handed): Basic ranged weapon with normal range.
- Crossbows (2-handed): Highest range of all ranged weapons.
- Pistols: Short range but high attack speeds.
- Shotgonnes (2-handed): Short range but deals splash damage.
- Cannons (2-handed): Shortest range but deals splash damage and a chance to stun.
- Wands: Greater magical damage on normal attacks.
Enchantment, Gems and Transmutation
Players can still enchant their equipment to get better attributes, but the enchantment system has been reworked. All equipment can now be only enchanted to a maximum of four additional enchantments. Enchanters can be found both in town and around the map, and different enchanters offer different types and maximum levels of enchantment. Catastrophic failures has been removed, but equipment can be disenchanted for a price, removing only their additional enchantments, to be re-enchanted.
Socketable gems also return to Torchlight II, but they cannot be transmuted to a higher tier of the same gems now. However, gems are now tiered similar to other equipment. There are also many different unique gems, found both in chests and dropped by bosses, that provide much better bonuses than normal gems. Gems can also be transmuted to give a random higher rarity gem.
The Transmuter becomes available to the player from Act II onwards, and allows players to transmute gems and other items for better items. Players can also transmute unused unique items for a new random unique, and combine unsocketed items and gems to create sockets.
Pets return in Torchlight II, and they still perform their roles as companion and pack horse. There are eight pets in Torchlight II, each with several different skins:
- A Lizard called the Chakawary,
- Falcor the Papillon.
Furthermore, an additional 6 pets have been added to the game post-release:
You choose your pet when creating your character.
A pet can assist the player in combat, fighting enemies and casting spells, and can also store extra loot the player finds, selling them back in town. In Torchlight II, pets can also buy potions and scrolls for the player when sent back to town, and will use the profits from selling item to purchase these items.
Instead of equipping rings and amulets like in the first game, pets now have their own set of equipment: collars and tags. These equipment function similar to the former, but are only wearable by pets. These pet equipment can be bought, given as quest rewards, or found via fishing. Pets can also learn up to four spells, compared to two in Torchlight.
Players can still fish up special fish to feed their pet, enhancing their abilities or even changing them entirely for a short period of time (or permanently). The fishing minigame has remained unchanged from the first game. However, fishing holes now have limited attempts, but will provide better items than in Torchlight. Players can also purchase dynamite, which bypasses the minigame but destroys the fishing hole.
Torchlight II will feature co-op play (up to a maximum of six players) via LAN, Internet, or a free matchmaking P2P service. Players can jump into a game at any point of time, and the game will scale the enemies only to the number of players present in any particular area at that time. All players near an enemy when it is killed will receive its experience and fame (if any), and the points are not split between the players. However, quest rewards are only given to those that have the quest, although anyone can pick up quest items. Item drops are not shared between players; any items a player sees is only available for that player. Any mods used by the host will also be active in that game, but any players wishing to join will need to have the same mods as the host.
Players can also duel other players with in-game PVP, but there are no proper arenas and the developers have stated that characters skills are not balanced for PVP in mind.
The New Game Plus mode is a replacement for the retirement system from the first game. It will be similar to that of Diablo II, starting over with your character and keeping all your levels, skills, loot, and gold from the previous play-through. However, all enemies will be at a higher level. New Game Plus characters will not be able to play with non-New Game Plus characters. There are several tiers of New Game Plus, starting from level fifty-two and ending with all enemies at level 120.
Players will also be able to buy map scrolls which provide a harder challenge than the base game. These map scrolls can be found in the Mapworks, unlocked after defeating the final boss the first time. The maps are separated into recommended levels, and most have several modifiers, both positive and negative, built into it. Players will progress through a random dungeon to fight a boss (one of the many faced during the game) at the end of the dungeon. They are meant to provide a challenge for endgame high leveled characters.
The Engineer is a melee-focused class equipped with steampunk armor and a heavy hammer. He takes the role of a tank and has skills that heal and protect both himself and his allies. He can also smash enemies efficiently with his hammer skills and his army of alchemical robots. His skill trees are: Blitz, Construction, and Aegis, and his charge bonus boosts the effects of many of his skills greatly.
The Engineer was the first class to be introduced, and was originally called the Railman. His name was changed as rails became less important to the storyline.
The Outlander is a ranged class that has similarities to the Vanquisher from the first game. Her skills allow her to hit enemies from afar and leap out of danger if they are too close. Her 3 skill trees are: Warfare, Lore, and Sigil, and her charge bonus gives her improved attack speed, dodge and critical hit rates, and lower cast time per increment of charge (up to 10%). Additionally, She gains an attack bonus and stuns the enemy if she has no charge in her bar.
The Outlander was originally called the Wanderer, and takes design cues from the Fremen in Dune.
The Berserker is a melee damage dealer with special animal-like powers. He can summon Spirit Wolves to aid him in battle, and tap into their power to unleash devastating attacks. His 3 skill trees are: Hunter, Tundra, and Shadow, and his charge bonus gives him increased movement speed and critical hits on all his attacks for 5 seconds.
The Berserker was announced via Runic Games' twitter for E3 2011. At one point in the development he used dragon- and raven-based magic.
The Embermage is a spellcaster that uses an array of powerful elemental spells. She taps into 3 elements of magic--fire, ice, and electric--to channel powerful spells to destroy her enemies. Her skill trees are Inferno, Frost, and Storm, and her charge bonus gives her the ability to casts spells without using mana and boosts her spell damage by 25% for 12 seconds.
The Embermage was first revealed and playable during PAX 2011.
On May 3, 2012, Runic Games introduced a closed beta to close friends and fans of the game. It consists of the game's Act I and the level is capped at twenty-one. Many late-game skills were also not added to the beta, and skill effects and balance were changed between the beta and the launch. All classes and pets were available for selection, and players were required to play online via Runic's matchmaking system. The beta lasted until May 24, 2012.
Torchlight II has a "simple" DRM solution. Both the patching and matchmaking features in the game will require logging into a Runic account, while running the game itself and playing in single player would not require logging in. Those who own the game through Steam will need to link their Steam account to their Runic account in order to play online, but will be able to patch the game through Steam.
Modding Tools & Steam Workshop
Torchlight II's modding tool, GUTS, was released along with a large content update on April 1, 2013. A Steam Workshop page was also set up allowing users easy access to a variety of mods for the game.
|PC System Requirements|
- OS: Windows XP SP3/Vista/Windows 7
- Processor: x86 1.4GHz or Faster
- Memory: 1 GB RAM
- Video: DirectX compatible 3D graphics card with 256MB of RAM
- HDD: 1.2 GB of free hard drive space
- DirectX: 9.0c