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Title Author Postedsort ascending Updated...
View from the Vault - Common Sense, Common Courtesy, and Our Community Members Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

Every now and then I am going to write an article about my observations as site manager of the Neverwinter Vault. While we have many types of spotlights and entries that are requested by community members, these articles will be based solely by my feelings, observations, and slightly askew perspective. Because of this, take them at face value. Articles about Pale Masters are not slights against clerics or people who love to play them, they are merely articles about Pale Masters. Articles about NWN2 are not slights against NWN1, they are simply NWN2 articles.

In Baseball They Call it Timely Hitting - Robinson Workshop Aims for the Fences With NWN2 Content Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 4 years 4 days ago

Every now and then I am going to write an article about my observations as site manager of the Neverwinter Vault. While we have many types of spotlights and entries that are requested by community members, these articles will be based solely by my feelings, observations, and slightly askew perspective. Because of this, take them at face value. Articles about Pale Masters are not slights against clerics or people who love to play them, they are merely articles about Pale Masters. Articles about NWN2 are not slights against NWN1, they are simply NWN2 articles.

Character Design Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

In previous articles I’ve talked a lot about plot, the use of realism, and started some discussion on the use of puzzles in games (which I intend to come back to with a synthesis of the discussion) but let’s get to the front of writing an RPG – characters.

A Player's NWN2 Teething Pains Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

So, Neverwinter Nights 2 has officially been out for 5 days now, and the Bioware forums are full of pleas for help and answers/suggestions as what to do for **. ( Help that has been forthcoming from Obsidian and the community at large) . We are a community of players who have become wizards at our favourite game, Neverwinter Nights, and suddenly with NWN2, we are plunged into the deepest of hells, and fumble around just trying to move in this new incarnation of our game, never mind having to learn a totally new interface. Well, OK, so maybe some of you have not felt like that, I certainly see evidence of it in the forums posts proclaiming "It runs like a dream on my system" Some with lower end systems are also finding no problem with the adjustment, and if anything, that gives me heart; for if this is true, then surely I, an avid lover of NWN and all it is, can learn this new system and play my most favourite game?

World of Krynn Preview Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

I was recently invited by Arcanius, from Neverwinter Haven, to visit his persistent world Krynn which is based on the Dragonlance setting. My visit to Krynn was done as a DM which offered me a behind the scenes look at how large Krynn is. As many of you might know Arcanius is also the author of "x" in one series of hak packs. What originally started out as a four in one when NWN was just released, has grown to a 25 in 1, which is what the world of Krynn uses. With over 125 areas, numerous tilesets, tons of unique creatures and items, this world is massive.

Why Should I Play NWN? Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

Here are some editorials from the vnboards answering the question on why you should play NWN. Thanks to Aurora_Rose for the heads up.

Why Wizards Don't Suck Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 4 years 4 days ago

Ah, another foray to change the minds of those who are still 3E-challenged. This time we are taking on the wizard class in all it's arcane glory. The wizard, though not a jack of all trades like the bard, is a master of all situations through the variety and increasing power of his spells.

Why Monks Don't Suck Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 4 years 4 days ago

I have seen a ton of people, myself included, turn away from this class because of its inability to use a variety of weapons or armor or magic items, not to mention the requirement of having to be some degree of lawful. Throw that in with the inability to multiclass freely (under most circumstances - some new supplements allow you to do so) and you have to really be committed to playing a monk throughout the campaign. If you take the time to check into the monk, you can see that this is not such a bad idea.

Why Epic Levels are Absolutely Necessary Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

I am very pleased to see that the discussion on this topic has received an epic amount of attention. I must respectfully disagree with my distinguished colleagues who have argued against epic levels.

Why HotU Should Stand for "Hand oUt" to the Community Builders Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

I'm a patient guy. It takes a lot to get me rattled. Well, for the most part. Sometimes I get a bit antsy when I'm waiting for something to happen, especially when it's something that I expect without question.

Why Bards Don't Suck Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 4 years 4 days ago

Alaric had to think fast.

Since his most recent capture by the ogres, he was sure to end up in the cooking pot this night. Certainly, his halfling companion had fallen to a similar fate the previous night, and he was not about to end up as some foul-smelling creature's evening meal. Unable to reach his mandolin, Alaric started to sing. Not just a song to calm his mind, but to capture the ogre guard's attention. He sang as best he could in ogre (one of the less romantic languages he knew) and weaved a song exalting the exploits of great ogre champions. The guard soon came back to join in on Alaric's fine vocalizations, and the quick-thinking Alaric poised a slight suggestion in his music that it might be better for the guard if this obviously harmless human was allowed out of his cage that the two could share a tankard or two whilst they sang.

It sounded a bit more like an oxen trying to yodel, but Alaric was not going to waste this opportunity as his captor opened his cage and clopped Alaric hard on the back. Alaric weaved a spell of Sleep into his singing and the guard was soon slumped, tankard in hand, across the small table outside Alaric's former cell.

Taking a few minutes to gather his gear, Alaric used stealth and agility to slip out of the ogre cave and into the freedom of the night.

What To Do Post-HotU Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

There is no way I would ever pay per download or pay monthly subscription charges for NWN content. Period.

 

What is Evil? Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

The word 'evil' is a universally hated word. It speaks of things like the Nazis in World War 2, Terrorism, and the typical Orcs in a fantasy setting. People might know what Evil means, but do they understand it? With hoards of MMORPGs and RPGs being announced daily, players are striving for a good storyline or a good role-playing environment to play in. Unfortunately, they're those who believe evil is nothing more than Player-Killing new players in online gaming, or writers who can't come up with anything better than 'bad orcs' and cliché 'world domination' villains. Here, we will be discussing proper guidelines on creating Evil within your world, as I lead you through the process.

Walking with Blinders On Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

We've all played a ton of games over the years, with each year bringing considerable advances in the quality and immersive nature of computer games. One of the coolest feelings I can recall involved logging in to Everquest for the first time and being able to run amongst the trees and come face to face with my first orc. Granted, the orc dispatched me quicker than a dog on a dreamsicle, but the fact that I could look the orc in the eye as he pounded me into the dirt immediately took away the sting of defeat.

Video Games, NWN, and the Free Market Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

Standing in the shower one day, I kind of began to think about video games, and how they are, to put it mildly, excellent. I never realized it before, but not only are they fun, but they are also form an industry which would make Adam Smith very happy. As I see it (and remember as you read this that I am as far from an economist as one can be), the video game industry relies on the quality of products and infusions of new ideas to keep it an incredibly competitive one. On top of that, video games seem to be a major reason of the success and continued development of the home computer. I am writing to this site because I believe that Neverwinter Nights and its upcoming CRPG brethren are a perfect example of everything I am talking about.

Tolerance and the NWN2 Custom Content Community mwmdragon 2015-11-11 4 years 1 week ago

We have an editorial by MWMDragon on the subject of the highs and lows of being a new modder to the community and how reactions in the community can put a person off at times. This article has been written not to have a go at any one person, but instead to give a little more insight on how other people reactions whether intended or not, can have an adverse affect on a Custom Content author or indeed, a module builder. Support in its varying ways, be it by constructive comments or votes or simple encouragement can mean a great deal. It is a large part of keeping a tight community.

The Uber Class in 3rd Edition Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 4 years 4 days ago

I am seeing a rather disturbing trend on the boards these days. I shouldn't be concerned with it, really, considering everything else going on in the world, but I seem to see this discussion crop up with every possible CRPG out there. It's as if the idiots everywhere have a committee that meets monthly to discuss how and when they are going to post on a public board about how they can't be the coolest class known to mankind, garnering the love of peasants and nobles throughout the cyberverse.

The Multiple Hak Pack Phenomenon dwinblood 2015-11-11 1 year 11 months ago

Several patches ago Bioware released a feature that should have made disseminating hak packs for your modules a breeze. In fact the end result is that most module specific hak packs should have been around 2 to 3 MB in size. However, I am still seeing the multi-meg hak packs out there for modules. Most people say big deal, I have broadband. Well, it can be a big deal for reasons other than internet speed. I have an opinion that has formed that most of us downloading modules and content fall into the following categories:

The Economy of a Virtual World - Thoughts From Behind the DM Screen Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

Before I start down the road, I want to first make a few statements of clarification. There is another editorial on NWVault, by Mandos (AKA Major Bill Marcellino, USMC) titled NWN Economies. This is a great editorial, but it deals with persistent world economies and not static world economies, which is the focus of my editorial. The following analysis is almost exclusively relevant to static module design, not persistent worlds. While there has certainly been a boom in the Persistent World "market" (so to speak), I am not a fan of the MMORPG and I have never been. I leave such discussions to people with expertise in that area, like Mandos. On with the show...

The Amateur Designers Point of View - Or the Flip Side of the Coin Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

As a novice/amateur module designer (Uluvin: Trouble in the Hills, and a follow-up currently in the testing stage), I read Vic Kappel's editorial with great interest. It was a very insightful and detailed read, with a lot of excellent suggestions for budding mod designers. However, in reading the editorial, it brought a few thoughts to mind. So to offer some suggestions to the player from the viewpoint of a designer, I offer the following, as sort of a reverse-rebuttal to Mr. Kappel's fine comments.

That Old Black Magic Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 4 years 4 days ago

My gaming group and I have been playing in a very different campaign world, experiencing a very different sort of campaign. Whereas we are normally in a high-magic world where magic items are not that hard to come by, we are a group without much punch in the magic department. In fact, aside from our cleric, the only magic-using cohort is a sorcerous NPC. As I have reflected over the campaign, I have been thinking about the concept of magic in modules and persistent world settings.

Tales of Games Gone By.... Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

I may be dating myself here, but I am one of those old pencil and paper D&D gamers that can remember when the game came with chits (little paper cutouts with numbers on them) that you would use to determine hits and damages. These would later be replaced with the various multisided dice. Those dice have been subsequently replaced by PCs. Editions of both regular D&D and AD&D have come and gone and slowly they have made the transition from the "tabletop" to the "desktop".

Some Thoughts on Alignment Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

An important part of your roleplaying experience is alignment. While a player should never feel pressure to pick a certain alignment; they should be held to their choice and to the logical ramifications of that choice. The biggest challenge facing players and DMs in terms of alignment is confusion over definitions. If you as a player have a very different standard of Lawful Good than I do as DM there will be problems.

Script, Schmipt! Let's Concentrate on the Story Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 4 years 4 days ago

It seems everyone is getting into the NWN script, hoping to be able to add that little tweak to the existing category of critters and items shipped with the initial release. Neverwinter Vault and others are offering scripting courses and people are lining up, from the cursory DM who's looking to make his world just a little different to the hardcore programmers hellbent on mastering the script to really knock down the barriers of the initial game.

Scooterpb vs. Bioware - Initial Thoughts Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

First off - let me say this: scooter did an amazing job.

Rating System Editorials - True Average Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

True Means or All We Are Saying, Is Give Means A Chance

Rating System Editorials - Trimmed Mean Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

Trimmed Average or Trimmed Mean:

(From my old Statistics book) : Trimmed Mean is a comprimise between (True) Average and Median.

While True Average uses all data points (votes on our case) to determine a representative value for the set of data, Median excludes all values but the 1 to 2 "middle" values and uses this value(s) to determine the representative value. Trimmed Average of a data set excludes the highest and lowest X% of the data points and takes the average of the remainder.

Rating System Editorials - No System Change Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

The voting system change being proposed by M.O.L.M. (Movement Of the Loud Minority) has rightly received a great deal of attention. I will start my article with why I am qualified to speak on this topic

Rating System Editorials - Bayesian Method Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

In short, the Bayesian method takes into account both the average score a module has received, and the total number of votes counted. Specifically, the more votes a module receives, the more "reliable" we may consider that average score to be (since more people agree on that score).

This doesn't mean that more votes always translates into a higher placement, however: if two mods have the same score and it is a low score, then the mod which has more votes will actually be placed lower in the rankings.

The technical details behind the Bayesian method are at the end of this article, but first let me address the pros and cons of the method.

Raising the Stakes - Tension is a Good Thing Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

"Drama is life with the dull bits cut out." -Alfred Hitchcock

Everyone loves a good story, and in a roleplaying game, players get to be part of the story. Good stories, whether on film, in a book, in life or in games, need dramatic tension. By dramatic tension I mean anything that makes our hearts beat faster, and I’d argue that love and sex may do this in life, it rarely works that way in RPGs! So I think dramatic tension comes from having something at stake. When you care about something happening, and it might not go the way you want, you experience dramatic tension.

Project Dialogue Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

A few weeks ago, I was trying to think about how the official campaign could have been improved upon, and I realized there's something that has been lost in the evolution of RPG games as far as BioWare handles it. I'm speaking of the dialogue between NPC characters and the more I think about it, the more I'm beginning to dislike the dialogue box. Yes it works very well, and the conversation editor in the toolset makes it really quite easy, but it's the closed system aspect of it that I think bothers me the most. By that I mean, the limited number of choices steering you through a set path.

Players - What Makes Them Tick? Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

Everyone loves a good story. It's what great DM's eat for breakfast. The stories we write, in a way, reveal to our audience (ie, our players) who we are and what we stand for in this life. The critical path of great stories is the development of empathy, and understanding, of the story's central participants and their varied circumstances. A good story takes us out of our own lives and puts us in someone elses' lives and allows us to come away with a greater understanding of ourselves in the process. But everyone finds their own meaning differently through the myriad of characters portrayed therein, and not always necessarily from the Protagonist, ie: "good guy." We sometimes like a movie, or a book, because of the bad guy. The bad guy helps us to define more clearly why we--for the most part--continue to stay and be good, for he is one more example of what we must never become. (Or, if you're bad yourself, the bad guy allows you to relate to someone.)

Persistent Misconceptions Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

It seems that everybody and their brother has hopped aboard the rabid, bouncing badger of persistent world-creation in order to have their chance at righting all the perceived wrongs of games such as Asheron's Call, Everquest, Dark Age of Camelot and Ultima Online. What I keep hearing from these worlds is that although they plan to throw in a few modules, most are going to be carbon copies of the above MMORPGs, standing out only because they are following a different ruleset..

NWN Economies Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

One of my particular concerns in persistent world gaming is economics. Most games of the ilk have trade skills and a monetary system coupled with the sale and purchase of items with scripted game characters (vendors and store keeps). All these systems share something in common with the failed systems of collectivist economies like Soviet Russia or Nazi Germany, to whit; they are centrally directed and controlled.

Neverwinter Nights - The Diamond That Awaits Every RPG Gamer Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

I wrote this article after realising just how misunderstood Neverwinter Nights was and continues to be but the fact remained that many many players would find a nirvana in this package if only they know the possibilities that await them two and a half years after release. So I hope you find this short essay informative and a door to new horizons.

Neverwinter Connections DM Class Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

At 11:55 I received a message from Neverwinter Connections with the password to the DM class scheduled tonight. Jumping into my DM client, I used the direct connect button in the Lan section to get to their server and arrived in a small tiled room with seven chairs forming a circle. Handling the class was Clangeddin Silverbeard, the DM and staff member of Neverwinter Connections.

Modules for the Masses - Headaches for the Designers Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

After NWN hits the store shelves, there are going to be three basic types of adventures created by fans: modules for downloading and playing, campaigns designed by a DM for a specific group of players, and persistent online worlds. The purpose of the following summaries is to highlight the advantages and disadvantages of each type, as I see it.

Review
Title Author Postedsort ascending Updated...
Three Hour Tour - The World of Aenea Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 4 years 4 days ago

I have asked the community of persistent world owners to take me on a short tour of their worlds, and to show me what sets them apart. The goal was to spend one hour or so in game in the world, and have them show what was under the hood, what they were about, and what they offered. This is the tale of my journey into the persistent realms of Neverwinter Nights and Neverwinter Nights 2.

The stories are true. The perspective is from experience. The fun was genuine. The following is largely representative of the hosts efforts and skills of hospitality. I took notes during my visits, and walked away for a short time. I revisited them after a bit and like meeting a stranger at a party, I let my memory and impressions of the visit guide this article.

Three Hour Tour - Shadow Mountain Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 4 years 4 days ago

I have asked the community of persistent world owners to take me on a short tour of their worlds, and to show me what sets them apart. The goal was to spend one hour or so in game in the world, and have them show what was under the hood, what they were about, and what they offered. This is the tale of my journey into the persistent realms of Neverwinter Nights and Neverwinter Nights 2.

The stories are true. The perspective is from experience. The fun was genuine. The following is largely representative of the hosts efforts and skills of hospitality. I took notes during my visits, and walked away for a short time. I revisited them after a bit and like meeting a stranger at a party, I let my memory and impressions of the visit guide this article.

Three Hour Tour - Realms of Trinity Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 4 years 4 days ago

I have asked the community of persistent world owners to take me on a short tour of their worlds, and to show me what sets them apart. The goal was to spend one hour or so in game in the world, and have them show what was under the hood, what they were about, and what they offered. This is the tale of my journey into the persistent realms of Neverwinter Nights and Neverwinter Nights 2.

The stories are true. The perspective is from experience. The fun was genuine. The following is largely representative of the hosts efforts and skills of hospitality. I took notes during my visits, and walked away for a short time. I revisited them after a bit and like meeting a stranger at a party, I let my memory and impressions of the visit guide this article.

Three Hour Tour - A Land Far Away Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 4 years 4 days ago

I have asked the community of persistent world owners to take me on a short tour of their worlds, and to show me what sets them apart. The goal was to spend one hour or so in game in the world, and have them show what was under the hood, what they were about, and what they offered. This is the tale of my journey into the persistent realms of Neverwinter Nights and Neverwinter Nights 2.

The stories are true. The perspective is from experience. The fun was genuine. The following is largely representative of the hosts efforts and skills of hospitality. I took notes during my visits, and walked away for a short time. I revisited them after a bit and like meeting a stranger at a party, I let my memory and impressions of the visit guide this article.

Interview
Title Author Postedsort ascending Updated...
Rob McGinnis Answers Questions from the French Community Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

A few weeks ago, we proposed Rob a chat and put some questions together in order to organize it. Sadly, the chat won't happen, but Rob was kind enough to answer to us...

Custom Community Chat (1/18/07) Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

Here's the Chatlog. Thanks to Mortis for cleaning it up

Reference
Title Author Postedsort ascending Updated...
Deployment and Installation of Custom Content in NWN2 Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

There are several ways to get custom content into the game, but not all are equal. Some have advantages over others and some can actually break your game install making you unable to patch your game. This document will describe various methods and highlight best practices.

Information valid for minimum game version: 1.04.

Step By Step Guide About Haks Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

A Hak is a file that is required in order to play certain Online servers, as well as some Single Player modules that you may have downloaded from the NWVault. In each case you will be informed of where to grab these Haks, either on the servers Website, in the Gamespy description of the server, or in the case of Single Player modules, directly on the page for that module. For the purposes of this tutorial, we will pick a PW that requires the use of Haks, it is called Vives, and the NWVault link for it can be found here.

How to Fix Heads Broken in Patch 1.66 Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

The fix to female human heads in patch 1.66 was needed to allow us to finally be able to have female human and halfelf characters wear helms correctly and display the glow of monk eyes too. There may be even more things coming that will rely on this fix. ;)

Brothers of Earth Prestige Class (Custom) Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago

The Brother of Earth is connected with the earth it self. The Brother of Earth finds himself in league with any characters. The Brother of Earth is usually a disciple of an earth deity.

Writing Advice Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 4 years 4 days ago

This is a post made on the official forums that we've transferred here for future reference.

Projection School of Magic Migrate Wizard 2015-11-11 3 years 11 months ago

This is a new school of magic created by Andrei Pambuccian that contains nine levels and 58 new spells and may offer many interesting ideas for campaigns.

Fan Fiction
Title Author Postedsort ascending Updated...
Tales of Layonara Comic Migrate Wizard 2015-11-12 3 years 11 months ago Issue #1 of the Tales of Layonara Comic Strip that is based on a party of adventurers in Layonara. Written by Andrew Thompson and drawn by Niels Andersen Dolmer. Enjoy the read!

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