Neverwinter Nights - All News
Sunday - December 10, 2017
NWN - Trent Oster Interview
Lilura1 interviewed Trent Oster, CEO of Beamdog, about Neverwinter Nights Enhanced Edition.
But now, Beamdog's announcement and upcoming release of Neverwinter Nights: Enhanced Edition means everyone will become aware of the game again, and all its wonderful mods, campaigns and persistent worlds. And it is the ardent desire of many that the community experiences a rebirth as a result.
The team at Beamdog have been gracious enough to agree to answer questions put forth by esteemed members of the community (neverwintervault.org), and myself (lilura1.blogspot.com). So let's get on with it, shall we?
• Hi to Trent Oster and the Beamdog team, and thank you for agreeing to this interview on your upcoming Neverwinter Nights: Enhanced Edition. Thank you for bringing NWN back, too; the community needed a wave not a ripple! Just how busy have you guys been over the past year? Burning the midnight oil, I would imagine?
Beamdog CEO, Trent Oster - We've been busy. As a policy we try to avoid overtime whenever possible, so no midnight oil was burned, but we have been putting in a lot of work on a number of fronts.
• There has been a flurry of activity on the Beamdog forums with the announcement of NWN:EE, and the persistent worlds are abuzz. How do you regard the public response to your announcement?
Trent - We were excited by the response, the community came out in force and it was a good announcement. Since we rolled the concept out early to bring in feedback from the community there was a limit to the high-visibility improvements we could make in the announce timeline. We're looking forward to rolling out new features as we get further into development.
• Speculation of an Enhanced Edition has come up on occasion but then died back down to the point that - even up until just recently - many in the community held only a faint glimmer of hope that an EE would ever come to fruition. Thus, the announcement was a big surprise to everyone. Can you tell us how NWN:EE finally got the go-ahead?
Trent - We had gone back and forth on the concept for quite a while. We finally reached a contract point where the project made sense to us and to our partners. It took a great deal of thinking about the potential of NWN:EE to make it happen.
• Broadly speaking, what will NWN:EE offer to fans aside from resolving the compatibility issues that plague owners of the original NWN - which I would think is its prime selling-point?
Trent - NWN:EE is a live, evolving platform for the creation of your own adventures or persistent worlds. That is the prime selling point. We've opened up the graphics engine side for improvement by moving to a shader-based system, we've added support for screens up to 4K, added in UI scaling so the font is readable in those larger resolutions. We've taken some good steps along a long road.
• What is a rough ETA on the x64 version and multi-core support? Will there be Linux x64 in addition to the confirmed Windows and Mac?
Trent - We haven't committed to anything publically as we're still thinking about what is possible and what is the most important to the game. 64 bit support makes sense we are interested, but we don't have a committed timeline.
Tuesday - November 21, 2017
NWN - Enhanced Edition Coming Soon
@GameInformer Beamdog will soon release Neverwinter Nights Enhanced Edition with some new features.
Return to the Forgotten Realms in this bestselling Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game. Combines all the content of Neverwinter Nights Diamond Edition with all-new enhanced features! Find out more at nwn.beamdog.com!
- Improved Display: Your portrait, combat bar, inventory, and other UI elements adjust in size based on your chosen resolution including 1080p and 4k.
- Advanced Graphics Options: Pixel shaders and post-processing effects make for crisper, cleaner visuals. Enable contrast, vibrance, and depth of field options as preferred.
- Community Endorsed: Original developers have teamed with key members of the Neverwinter Nights community to curate important fan-requested improvements to support players, storytellers, and modders.
- Backwards Compatibility: Works with save games, modules, and mods from the original Neverwinter Nights. A galaxy of community created content awaits.
Friday - June 23, 2017
NWN - Revisiting NWN
GOG hosts a guest article which details how to get the most out of Neverwinter Nights today. Thanks Luj1!
Set up your own adventures, look for mods, and become the ultimate DM.
A celebrated classic never truly fades away and Neverwinter Nights Diamond is as deserving of this title as any RPG you will play. Beyond its exciting campaigns and rock-solid rendition of the D&D ruleset, the game's extensive toolset is an open invitation to the community, encouraging them to build and moderate their own adventures.
Bernhard "niv" Stoeckner from the Neverwinter Vault community has prepared a detailed piece where he explains how to go about doing all that.
One of the best things about Neverwinter Nights is the inclusion of a special piece of software, called the DM Client, that allows a player to become the organiser of a Neverwinter Nights module and campaign. This position is called the Dungeon Master (DM) in D&D terms. He or she controls all other aspects of the game except for the other players' characters: the monsters, the encounters, and all the non-player characters in the adventure are under the DM's command, just like in a pen & paper campaign.
The DM client, used in conjunction with the toolset, enables players to experience a dynamic story in a different way than most other single-player or even multiplayer games. It is an entirely different kind of adventure when you find yourself within a story or environment that is being brought to life by another person (not a program) who is moving things behind the scenes in reaction to your character's actions and choices. And if you are the kind of person who likes to create fun for other people, to co-write a narrative with others ‘on the fly' within the parameters set by the module and setting of your choice, you will thrive in the DM-side of the game.
Monday - June 19, 2017
NWN - Interview with Trent Oster
It is the 15th anniversary of Neverwinter Nights. The Neverwinter Vault decided to talk to Trent Oster to commemorate the game.
Learn the story behind one of the true RPG legends' creation.
Bernhard "niv" Stoeckner and other members of the Neverwinter Vault community put together this in-depth interview with the game's Project Director/Producer Tent Oster.
If you're interested in learning about the creation of a legend, you're in for a real treat.
Nowadays, when most people hear the name Trent Oster, they think of him as the CEO of Beamdog and the Enhanced Editions of Baldur's Gate, Baldur's Gate II, Icewind Dale, and Planespace: Torment released on GOG and elsewhere.
But fans of Neverwinter Nights will remember Trent as the Project Director/Producer (and other roles) of the game they love so much. I've had the opportunity to reach out to Trent with a few questions about the development of NWN and how it changed in the last fifteen years.
Fifteen years later, Neverwinter Nights is still going strong with thousands of online players every day. What do you think about what the NWN community has done since NWN took flight? What surprised you the most?
Trent: I think the community has done awesome work. The volume of really cool adventures even in the early days was amazing. I've probably been most surprised at the longevity of some of the online worlds and the lengths the operators have gone through to enhance and improve their worlds.
What are the key elements for a pen & paper campaign? Was there ever an adventure you'd wanted to play in? How does that translate to a video game?
Trent: The key elements of a pen and paper game are a fun group, a flexible DM who can tell a great story, and enough snacks to last till the wee hours. When I was younger I would occasionally buy a module and want to play it, but our group was typically too low level. Lost caverns of Tsojcanth comes to mind as one such adventure. I think playing with friends in a video game can translate well, it removes all the logistics management and simulation load from the players and the DM, but computer games impose some hard limitations in what a player can do. Having a live DM and some powerful tools can help mitigate that a bit, but you still don't have the full freedom of pen and paper.
NWN is sometimes considered as a self-owned, self-hosted mini-MMO toolkit. This model might not be profitable in modern times which could be why we haven't seen other games following it. What do you think about the online gaming landscape in 2017?
Trent: I think we really focused on a simple plan: to give players value for their money. Anyone who buys Neverwinter Nights gets a fun game, the tools to tell their own stories, and the potential to run their own server. When we launched new content, players got an expansion with a new single player story, some new tilesets, new monsters, and new items. I think today the cost/value is still a good metric and some companies are doing well while others are not.
Wednesday - May 24, 2017
RPGWatch Feature - The Aielund Saga Review
Purpleblob looked into one of the Neverwinter Night mod The Aielund Saga and wrote a review of that game for RPGWatch
The Aielund Saga is an epic adventure comprised of four chapters, with the last chapter divided into three parts. Set in the Kingdom of Aielund, the story unfolds in a small town where you find yourself trapped by seemingly never ending rain. You will quickly find two companions who are also tired of being trapped in the inn, and start to wander around the town looking for errands to be done. As your party work through the list of small favours for the townsfolk, you slowly discover that the cause of troubles around the region may be more than just unnatural weather.
The story builds up slowly in the early game, revealing just enough to get you intrigued and hint at something more ominous in play. Experiencing the modules in order is recommend, as each one chronologically revolves around a major event in the saga and the tight story-telling and unexpected twists leaves the player wanting more at the conclusion of each chapter, despite the linear overarching plot.
The saga spans a number of years and you can truly feel your character becoming part of the community. The story will have you heading back to familiar towns and negotiating alliances with familiar faces, as previous friends may not share your cause as before. You will witness the rise and fall of nations and civilisations as you travel throughout Aielund and its neighbouring regions. In the midst of a power struggle, you may even lose your previous standing, and be reduced to nobody in the new order. You will need to rely on all the skills available to you and your companions to survive and regain your former standing.
Thursday - December 01, 2016
NWN - Giveaway on GOG
Right now you can get the Neverwinter Nights Diamond Edition for free on GOG.
There's a number of other RPG classics on sale during the Monstrous Winter Sale.
Thank you for the info, rjshae!
Tuesday - June 21, 2016
NWN - Made Me Love Gaming (Op-Ed)
For one Kotaku writer, Neverwinter Nights was the title that made them truly love gaming.
In an editorial published on Kotaku, we learn how much of an impact BioWare's Neverwinter Nights had on the author during their earliest days of playing video games, while also hearing that current BioWare employees, including level designer Jess Hara Campbell, have also credited the title for their earliest role-playing inspirations. I can't say that Neverwinter Nights had much of an impact on me at the time of its release due to its handling of companions and somewhat lackluster storyline in comparison to Baldur's Gate, but it was still a solid offering with a wealth of DMing options, so it's great to hear that others found it even more compelling:The story BioWare wrote in Neverwinter Nights has plenty to keep the player engaged, and the ever-evolving nature of the main antagonist keeps an aura of mystery around the game from start to finish. The atmospheres are excellent—the music, forests, dungeons, and ambient sounds created excellent immersion even with 2002-era graphics.
It was the characters, though, that made Neverwinter my favorite, and for many years only, game. I replayed the main campaign four times, and the expansion packs many more times than that. The NPCs were fun, flawed and downright weird (kobold bard, anyone?). Perhaps more importantly, the PC was entirely up to me. I don’t think gaming would’ve become a passion for me if I’d been forced to play as a Muscular Male With A Sword. There’s nothing wrong with that archetype, but he and I don’t have much in common.
Gaming is different things to different people: some want to role-play as someone else; some want to be a better version of themselves; some people just want to swing an axe. But what sets gaming apart from books and movies is that the player has a hand in creation: we get to decide which of those things to be. And getting to write our own stories is pretty powerful.
Now, if we were talking about the original SSI title on AOL back in the formative years of online gaming, I'd have much more to say about the matter.
Tuesday - April 07, 2015
RPGWatch - Modder Savant Interview
Weclome back everyone to my next short interview with Neverwinter modder Savant (aka Stephen Nowland). We discuss his NWN mods, and new game novels.
Couchpotato: What made you start building modules for NWN, and did you foresee them becoming as popular as they did?
Stephen Nowland: Before NWN came out, I used to run pen and paper D&D games for my friends and had a wealth of material to go from. I wanted to create some adventures to run them through, but of course the build time was far more than I’d counted on. By then, the modding instinct had taken me over and I was determined to make it a good, standalone story. I’d previously written an unpublished adventure novel and began to factor elements from that into my mod. It was still pretty rough at first, but it smoothed out over time as I refused to give up on it. From there, I kept adding to and developing Aielund and the world around it. I never expected them to become that popular, though I’m pleased so many people enjoyed my work!
Sunday - February 01, 2015
NWN - Let's Play Saleron's Gambit
Staff member Fluent has finally had the chance to play Neverwinter Nights, and based off a few suggestions on a forum thread he has started to play Saleron's Gambit.
Here is his first Lets Play video with his opinion on the mod.
In this exciting Episode 1 of our NEW Let's Play, we will be exploring a module (or simply, a mod) for the classic computer role-playing game, Neverwinter Nights, called Saleron's Gambit!
Neverwinter Nights is a classic RPG created by the legendary BioWare team,and Saleron's Gambit is a module created for the game by a modder in the community. Neverwinter Nights has TONS of mods like this one, and I chose this because a friend suggested it to me.
There are 5 total chapters to this module, and we will be starting at the beginning with a new character and progressing through each chapter!
This module is heavy on dialog, story-telling, and has a serious pen-and-paper RPG feel to it. So, expect lots of narration by yours truly! :)
Thursday - January 08, 2015
NWN - Retrospective @ Chalgyr's Game Room
Chalgyr's Game Room posted a new retrospective for Bioware's Neverwinter Nights. I still play the game ten years later, and can't say the same for many other games.
Neverwinter Nights is not a game you will show your friends to impress them. It’s old and its graphics look very poor compared to those of modern productions. However, it is a fine choice if you want to be immersed in a world where strange creatures, mystical forests and long forgotten treasures await the intrepid adventurer.
Sunday - June 30, 2013
NWN - The Vault is Back
If you recall earlier the news of the nwvault closing was premature. The DNS was temporally deleted which usually means the site is being moved, or in the process of being shutdown.
The admin of the site still recommends every one migrate to the new site at neverwintervault.org. It will become vault version 2 as the original vaults days are numbered.
Thursday - June 27, 2013
NWN Vault - Shutdown?
The NWN Vault might have been shutdown. No reasons were given but according to this NWN forum post it may have something to do with Atari. The good news is there is a new home at neverwintervault.org.
I first knew we were in trouble when Maximus accepted my offer to help with what sounded almost like relief.
Couldn't be. I just have a vivid imagination.Then we started having probs with email. And with the Hall of Fame. And…Well.
I floated the idea of a vault backup, well, a long time ago. Fire extinguisher, sprinklers. Maybe even a safe place to put the files.Last October I was seriously frightened by the things I saw and didn't see, the things everyone heard and the things only I heard.
A few other people started talking to me and helping out. And the vault got worse. I'm starting to pontificate. Not my intention.Pain & Tarot, Werelynx & Henesua. Others. A lot of people have been working hard over the last two months saving stuff.
We have archive of all the project files through last Sunday. We have copies of the meta data and copies of the download counts and award tags and at least the first page of comments.
We have archives of most of the articles and tutorials. We even have the surviving "top ten" lists (some of which even feature a certain old wizard from 2001 ;-)
The library may be burning, but the books are safe. Not everything works right. But the new place is starting to come together. I rather like it here.And, given the opportunity, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't let a crazy old wizard and his smart-beaked bird work here
In the mean time anybody who can help with restoring the files, or help the new site please do.
I think we who have been working over there, now that the shoe has seemed to drop, are going to be needing a lot of expertise from the entire community. This is not something one person can handle, this is the community itself which needs to come together to survive this.
But also a lot of us tend to just roll up our sleeves and just get to work, and do the best we can with what we have.
If you poke over there and notice something that needs doing, which you think you can do, we'd be more than happy to have you join us, even if you only do a small task. Actually just poking your head in, registering, and making a forum post stating who you are is quite helpful too.
Right now I am focusing on getting thru the crisis, hoping our backups are valid, that nothing is lost, and how to move things back. I do have some processing of files ( download and process the Sha1 ) which just needs you to have bandwidth and being able to leave your computer on - i am on #nwn2cr and you can friend/PM me if you think you can help.
Monday - May 20, 2013
Neverwinter Nights - Postmortem
Gamasutra publishes an article that was apparently already part of the November 2002 issue of Game Developer Magazin. In the article Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk, together with designers Scott Greig, James Ohlen and Trent Oster, explore what went right and what went wrong during the development of Neverwinter Nights.
From the 'what went right' part:
3. Multiplayer integration from the outset.
Although Baldur's Gate was intended to have multiplayer support from the beginning, we did not actually start programming the multiplayer systems until relatively late in that project. As a result, some of the multiplayer aspects in Baldur's Gate — such as forcing all players to see all dialogue — were less than optimal.
In Neverwinter Nights, the multiplayer systems were integrated directly into the original design. Even in singleplayer, the game acts like a multiplayer game with a single client attached. Although this deep integration increased the time to develop each system (compared to a single-player-only system), it did result in an overall reduction in the time required to integrate multiplayer and ensured that all the systems were optimized for multiplayer play.
One useful lesson from both the Baldur's Gate series and Neverwinter Nights was how much time QA testing of a multiplayer game takes compared with testing just the single-player game. We have found that three to five times as much testing is needed for multiplayer role-playing games compared with singleplayer. Thus we require 30 to 50 testers (including both on-site and external testers) on our multiplayer projects for three- to six-month periods — not a small undertaking.
And from the 'what went wrong' part:
4. Late feature additions; innovation for its own sake.
To ship a game that takes five years to develop takes a fair amount of intestinal fortitude. You really can't second-guess your decisions or you'll have no chance of ever completing the project, so the leads of the project agonized over some late feature additions to Neverwinter Nights. Given that the game was in development for such a long period, we were all concerned it might look dated by release. To combat this issue we laid out a plan to add a number of high-impact but relatively easy-to-implement features late in the development cycle to improve the game's visual quality. These additions resulted in constant concern among the artists who had to generate the new art required to support the late-added technologies. In the end it all worked out because of large personal efforts by many team members.
From the start there was a strong desire to make NWN a unique game distinct from the Baldur's Gate experience. While this did lead to the development of new systems that were better than those of Baldur's Gate, it also led to an excessive amount of time spent on design and prototyping of features that ultimately could not be implemented. We'd often sink a considerable amount of research into creating an innovative system, only to fall back on a similar system that worked better in the earlier Infinity engine.
Too often we were determined to start at square one, instead of expanding on what had worked with our previous games. We learned that it is important to choose our battles. In the future, when designing a game set in a genre that we have experience with, we will look more closely at what has worked well previously and aim to innovate only in the areas of our past games that our fans and critics perceived as weak.
Tuesday - April 16, 2013
RPGWatch Feature - Bob McCabe Interview
Bob McCabe is a former Bioware employee who worked as a designer on Neverwinter Nights and changed more into a QA role on later titles, such as Jade Empire. Lucky Day met with Bob and talked about his days at Bioware and Neverwinter Nights.
LD: You had to scrap the original plot as well as a lot of content, like tilesets, as part of the settlement with Interplay. And there were a lot of people shocked when the original Interplay story got leaked. What can you say about that?fantastic story, very polished, and I was glad it got put out there as a novelty of sorts. I really liked the politics and sense of betrayal and twists, on and on. I thought it was a very well done epic, such a fun story. And I'm glad fans can look at that and peek behind the curtain a little. I know I've enjoyed looking at stuff like that with the Ultima series, or some of the various other docs that have popped out over time. But I never expected it to see the light of day. That it did get released was also disappointing. I was proud of the final team effort, that the entire team was able to get such a huge project (DM Client, tools, multiplayer, and a full campaign) out, and pointing to an alternate story partially diminishes some of what we accomplished.
Bob: I don't know what did or didn't get cut as part of a settlement. I didn't think any of the tiles had been cut, to be honest. But I can't really say more than that.
The original plot's release caught me off guard. In a way I was glad. I thought it was a
Let me put it this way: I'm playing through Fallout: New Vegas (again, because it's that good) and I came across a fan patch that puts a bunch of cut content back into the game. But sometimes that content was cut for a reason, and its release creates room for people to second-guess the creative process. If that's intentional (i.e. a movie released with multiple endings or deleted scenes), so be it, but I don't think that was the case here.
Monday - August 15, 2011
NWN - D&D Hall of Fame Nominee @ Diehard GameFAN
To celebrate the release of the Neverwinter Campaign Setting for 4th Edition Dungeons & Dragons, Diehard GameFAN are looking for the D&D game that can be placed in their Hall of Fame. Today they nominated NeverWinter Nights, which failed their criteria to enter the Hall of Fame.
So what made Neverwinter Nights so memorable? Well there were a lot of things. The first was the ability to truly customize your character. For example, I played a Dwarven Necromancer for my first time through– something that wasn’t even remotely possible in any form of D&D before third edition. The game offered several expansion packs, which really hadn’t been done before this; certainly not to the level of success things like Shadows of Undrentide, Kingmaker and more managed to achieve. Most important was the multiplayer and community aspects of the game. Taking a page from Vampire: The Masquerade – Redemption, Neverwinter Nights allowed gamers to not only create their own adventures, but to play these adventures with other people. Playing games online is pretty run of the mill today, but in 2002 a game that could let up to 96 gamers go at it all at once was a big deal. This was a big deal and I personally was involved with a Ravenloft campaign for sometime where we’d all take turns running adventures. It was an insane amount of fun.
Tuesday - May 10, 2011
NWN - Are Bloody Long @ Destructoid
Destructoid has a blog entry titled Neverwinter Nights Are Bloody Long, with the author reminiscing about his NWN playing days:
Where once I reveled in my solo adventures, they ended up seeming hollow compared to the fun I got up to with my fellow nerdy roleplayers. I ended up making several friends there and went on to help one of them with a new guild which they'd been allowed to create. The world was split up into a couple of different mods due to it's size and our guild was on the much quieter mod. The server population wasn't nearly as high so the Dungeon Masters didn't pay as much attention to it. So instead of us waiting around for a DM to create some quest for us to embark upon, like players did in so many of the persistent worlds I went on to visit, we were left up to our own inventiveness. We typed out lore for our guild until the blisters on our fingers looked oddly like orcs, together we crafted centuries of fictional history, not just for the guild but for the whole continent, in a constant collaborative brain storm. Because there were so few of us on this particular mod we became a tight knit group. Yes, there was drama and there was certainly a lot of differences of opinion, but in the end any bullshit was rapidly forgotten as we got stuck into the next adventure.
Wednesday - March 23, 2011
NWN - CP 1.70 Testers Needed
Lucky Day writes the NWN community has continued to work on releasing the next Community Patch "as a true patch and not a hack". A release candidate for v1.70 is ready but more testers are needed if you'd like to dust off the disks.
Saturday - July 31, 2010
NWCon 6 Announced
Marc writes to say NWCon 6 is coming soon for. Head here for details and a FAQ that explains everything; here's the intro:
NWCon 6 Dates: Friday-Saturday-Sunday, Sept 10, 11, 12, 2010
What is it?: NWCon6 is the sixth online convention for Neverwinter Nights and Neverwinter Nights 2 players. The con includes in-game and chat-based seminars where experts will share their NWN knowledge on DMing, gaming, building, and more. And, of course, there are games. Lots of Games! New players and experts alike are welcome to join in and share the fun.
Friday - March 05, 2010
RPGWatch Feature: NWN Premium Modules Retrospective
From time to time we plan to re-use some old material, both as a form of retrospective and as a sort of historical record. We don't have a grand plan (at this stage) but many of you probably realise we lost many years of work with our previous site. Our first such retrospective sees Mike Anderson review the Premium Module content for NWN, with some small updates added in.
Darkness over Daggerford
This was planned as a Premium module, but was cancelled when Atari pulled the plug on that program. Ossian studios continued on and released the module in August for free. And thank goodness they did - the game offers tremendous gameplay as well as innovations that make it hard to believe this is just a module.
From the start it is clear that things are different in this module - there is an overworld map and unfolding story reminiscent of Baldur's Gate 2. The ability to gain a stronghold is another thing that makes this feel like that classic game. There is a love for the D&D world and gaming universe heaped on this module that adds to the fun without feeling forced - for example, in one quest, you find a floating skull who was from a different plane ... a place of Torment. Add to this a solid story and quest that unfolds gradually as you open areas on the map and you have a feel for the excellence of the module. Many newer modules are stricter about enforcing your alignment, and this is no exception. You get small rewards or deductions to your alignment as always, but also small bits of experience as a bonus.
Wednesday - February 03, 2010
NWN - Netbook Gamer Reto
Mike Anderson looks at NWN from the perspective of a netbook gamer in his column at Gear Diary:
I have talked about the story – but not commented on whether or not I like it as of yet. This is a tricky area with RPG fans. Most people – even fans of NWN – consider the original campaign of NWN to be weak and boring. Personally, I never shared that opinion. Certainly it is not a ground-breaking tale, but there is plenty to do and it is highly entertaining, and the experience is varied enough to be enjoyable for multiple player classes taking different role-playing approaches.
My criticisms of the core story elements are that the game is often uneven, varying between exciting and boring tasks that feel like drudgery. This actually had little to do with the story as told by Bioware, and more to do with the fact that I like to work through all of the henchmen tales. This involves taking each one on initially, playing some amount with them, talking to them until no more options were available, and completing each of their side-quests.
Monday - November 09, 2009
NWN - Premium Modules Removed
Sorcerer's Place writes they noticed the NWN Premium Modules (such as Shadowguard and Kingmaker) are no longer available from BioWare - even the web pages have been removed. Inquiring further, they discovered they were suddenly advised by Atari to remove them at the end of August for "legal reasons":
A few days ago I somewhat accidentally noticed that all of their pages on BioWare's website, as well as their web store, have been removed. I inquired about this over at BioWare and learned that the premium modules were removed from BioWare's website at Atari's instruction. What's more, BioWare can no longer sell them nor advertise them.
Through further inquiries we've learned that this has happened at the end of August and that BioWare had almost no notice from Atari and had to remove the premium modules within a day for "legal reasons".
Purchased modules will still work but they can't be bought any more. Head over for the original full story.
Source: Sorcerers Place
Monday - July 21, 2008
NWN - Darkness over Daggerford Review @ GameBanshee
With Ossian's Mysteries of Westgate due to be released some century or other, GameBanshee thought they might go back and look at their older Darkness over Daggerford mod. The score is 7.8/10 with general praise apart from the joinable NPCs and disconnected quests:
In Darkness over Daggerford, you play a simple mercenary. You start out as a bodyguard for a tailor, but then your caravan is attacked near Daggerford (which is located between the famous cities of Waterdeep and Baldur’s Gate), and you get sucked into a larger conspiracy. From talking to the townspeople, you learn that lots of bad things have been happening in the area lately, including the death of the governing duke, and you eventually decide to explore the surroundings to see if you can figure out what’s going on. This leads you to battle a good chunk of the official Dungeons & Dragons bestiary, including vampires, werewolves, orcs, trolls, dragons, and more.
Tuesday - July 15, 2008
NWN - v1.69 Localised Translation News
Thanks to Lucky Day for writing in with updates on translations for NWN v1.69 - an issue that was discussed on our own forums recently:
Craig Welburne of the Bioware Live team is asking for volunteers to help (do) the translation for the French/Italian/German/Spanish (FIGS) . Jay Watamaniuk will spearhead the initiative.
The Polish translation appears to be almost finished and may have been done by CDProjekt
Finally, a workaround for foreign language versions has been found by simply by getting the english dialog.tlk file then running the critical rebuild
Thursday - July 10, 2008
NWN - Final 1.69 Patch Released
Lucky Day writes in with the following information:
The final patch for NWN, 1.69, has been released...at least for Servers.
This is not the patch for clients yet, merely for the standalone servers. Available versions are for Windows, Mac, and Linux...Look for the main patch to be released imminently.
You can pick up the patch and more information here on the Bioware forums.
Thanks for keeping us posted, Lucky.
Friday - June 06, 2008
NWN - Original Design Doc?
Lucky Day points out a new item at RPG Vault from a user that purports to be (part of) an original NWN plot overview document. If genuine, it reveals a different context was originally envisioned:
Unlike disease and poison, madness has no specific effect in the 3e rules. For our purposes, madness is best depicted via illusions (for more details on illusions, see the “Illusions and Invisibility” section of this document, p.80). This may involve seeing illusionary monsters when there is really nothing there or seeing more monsters than there actually are in a given battle. Creatures, including fellow party members, may fade into and out of invisibility, cycle through a series of monstrous models, or suddenly burst into flames (or some other visual effect) before the madman’s eyes. He may even hear randomly triggered hotkey voice files from monsters, NPCs, and fellow players. Mad characters will also be haunted by an urgent cacophony of whispers whenever they attempt to rest. Lastly, custom-scripted events can also be linked to madness checks, allowing us to tailor madness to the actual campaign through visions of past characters and other such devices.
There's absolutely no information about the poster or source but it cerainly reads as genuine.
Monday - May 19, 2008
NWN - 1.69 Beta 10 Available
Lucky Day writes in with the news that the 1.69 Beta patch version 10 for Neverwinter Nights is now available, and he was kind enough to fill me in on the process a bit, so I'll quote him for anyone who's like me and not up to speed on this:
For the past 2 or so years Bioware has been working on its final patch, 1.69 for the original NWN. It never got much enthusiasm at the company until Brian Chung was hired from the Dragonlance Adventures (DLA) team and he and Craig Welburne began integrating features such as horses and the huge T'N'O tileset into it. That process has taken at least a year.
Beta 10 of this patch may very well be the final patch..finally!
Beta patch specific fixes made since Beta 9
Significant improvements to the new horse scripting systems.
A lot of new tileset fixes.
Fixed an issue in the toolset, where erasing a tile that contained a door would cause the left mouse button state to get locked to the down state.
Moved Caravan loading screen tgas out of the patch bif and put them in override. Fixes issue with the desert caravan loading screens showing up at inappropriate times.
Moved NVidia dds texture fixes out of the patch bif and into xp2_tex_tpa.erf, so that the fixed textures actually get used by the game.
Moved fixed iit_midmisc_029.tga out of the patch bif and into override.
Tridents and Magic staves are now considered melee weapons by the scripting command GetMeleeWeapon() (x2_i0_spells).
Added references to additional Trogolodyte appearances in appearance.2da.
Fixed a few portraits that were classified under the incorrect gender/race (portraits.2da). Fixed incorrect row numbering in the following 2das: CLS_FEAT_BARD.2DA, CLS_FEAT_RANG.2DA, CLS_SKILL_ASASIN.2DA, CLS_SKILL_BARD.2DA, CLS_SKILL_DRU.2DA, CLS_SKILL_RANG.2DA, CLS_SKILL_ROG.2DA, CLS_SKILL_SHIFTR.2DA
Updated Horse heights and personal space values in the Appearance.2da.
Removed Trumpet/Horn of blasting from AmbientSounds.2da as they were highly annoying as looping sounds.
Added IP_CONST_FEAT_PLAYER_TOOL* constants to nwscript.nss
Fixed bad fxpa_mist.tga texture that was causing some toolset instability when using the "Castle Exterior, Rural" tileset.
Thanks for the heads up as well as the background, Lucky Day.
Sunday - March 09, 2008
NWN - 1.69 Beta 7 and 8
Avantenor sent in details of the latest NWN v1.69 patch betas and since he sent such a comprehensive email, I'm just going to post it in full:
Thursday and Friday Craig Wellburn released beta 7 and 8 of the upcoming patch 1.69 in the official forums. Changelog contains mostly fixes, but also three new additions since beta 6. I've put the two changelogs together (Links at the bottom of this mail):Beta patch specific fixes made since Beta 7
- Fixed issue with the scripting command SetCreatureAppearance() not restoring players to PC movement speed when restoring the character back to one of the playable races.
- Fixed missing feat FEAT_EPIC_OVERWHELMING_CRITICAL_CLUB for Paladins.
- Fixed TailModel.2da issue that was causing goblins to appear on some creature's backs (also fixed some templates that had wings/tails set to 205 (rather than 0).
Beta patch specific fixes made since Beta 6
- Added support for 10 new custom animations (plus mount/dismount animations).
- Fixed issue with the DM "Send Exit Event" radial command when used on generic triggers. The DM object wasn't being set correctly as the exiting object causing calls to GetExitingObject() to not work correctly.
- Fix to GetDescription() scripting command to return the proper description for items.
- Fixed Isacc's Missile Storm Projectile Traps to work again (x0_i0_spells.nss).
- Fixed broken "Heavy War Horse" template in toolset palette.
- Troglodyte Warrior had a Throwing Axe in their inventory that was dropable (now non-dropable)
- Fixed attack bonus granted when attacking stunned creatures.
- Fixed missing concealment bonus on the Shadowdancer's Epic Shadowlord (x2_ch_summon_sld.nss).
- Fixed issue with Champions of Torm not being able to take Ambidexterity and Two Weapon Fighting as Bonus Feats (CLS_FEAT_DIVCHA.2da).
- Updated description for "Hammer of the Gods" to properly relect the effects of a successful Will save.
- Negative Energy Traps no longer harm undead (nw_t1_negavgc.nss, nw_t1_negstrc.nss, nw_t1_negdeadc.nss, nw_t1_negminc.nss).
- Fixed AC Increase vs Damage Type item property to work correctly.
- Added new nwnplayer.ini file setting to hide the hit points rolled on the level up summary gui (defaults to off).
Hide Hit Points Gained=0
- Added new option to the nwtoolset.ini file to set the toolset CPU affinity on multi-core computers. If you have more than one CPU on your PC, then you can use this setting to make the toolset run on only one of the CPUs by specifying the number of the CPU (0-31). Setting "CPU Affinity=-1" will turn off CPU affinity (default 0).
- Fixed some environment mapping issues for Wings/Tails in the toolset.
- Fixed a scaling issue for Wings/Tails in the toolset.
- Reprocessed a number of DDS textures to fix some graphical corruption issues on newer Nvidia cards (with the latest drivers).
- Fixed incorrect portrait on Rope placeable.
- Slight change to Script profiling to not list scripts that don't exist.
Beta 7 Thread
Beta 8 Thread
Sunday - February 03, 2008
NWN - v1.69 Beta 5
BioWare's Craig Welburn has announced v1.69 Beta 5 for NWN with these changes:
- Fixes to horse related scripts.
- Fixed portable encampment script x3_it_camp.nss, so that it only fires when the item is activated.
- Fixed toolset crash when shutting down toolset, or switching between modules.
- Fixed issue in the "City Interior 2" tileset that could cause the toolset/game to crash.
- Newly created modules will now have the OnClientEnter script set to "x3_mod_def_enter" by default.
- Removed extra broken ruby template from Toolset palette.
- Fixed broken portrait references in Appearance.2da for Halaster, Satyr Archer, Satry Warrior and the "Witch King, Disguised".
- Many tileset fixes.
- Many spelling/typo fixes to the offical campaign.
- Fixed issue with some flag/tree placeables moving after being placed down in the toolset.
- Fixed game hang caused by Wizards having more than 255 spells known in their spell book.
...and Brian Chung continues to mention a v1.70.
Thanks, Lucky Day!
Saturday - January 26, 2008
NWN - v1.69 Beta 4
Beta 4 of the v1.69 update for NWN has been released, offering a horse scripting system and a ton of fixed typos.
Well, 1.69 to include the ID and WCoC stuff was always on our plate, we just had no idea of when. As there aren't any more forthcoming Premium Modules, the chances of 1.70 with new content is even lower, probably only for any critical crash bugs or exploits.
I might consider cleaning out my rsync server and continue to run that as an unofficial "1.70" content server, and stuff things I wasn't able to in 1.69 into it, such as the stuff DLA made for other PMs that weren't released. Trout and bass fish creatures, rabbits, lizardfolk and dragonkin. Maybe animate that otyugh that batinthehat made awhile back.
Alter the water tiles to support the fish and sharks (and swimming and boating). Any more misc. tileset fixes.
Thanks, Lucky Day!
Saturday - January 19, 2008
NWN - v1.69 Beta 3
Lucky Day writes that Beta 3 of the NWN v1.69 patch is now available and includes Horse Scripts and the Purple Dragon Knight Prestige Class as well as a bunch of other fixes but apparently the 2nd-storey tile fade idea has been dropped.
Monday - January 14, 2008
NWN - Stormfront Studio Recognized @ Tech & Engineering Emmy Awards
Bluesnews posts a link to an article at gameinfowire.com that reports that Stormfront Studios was recently honored for creating the first graphical MMORPG in Neverwinter Nights, at the 59th Annual Emmy Technology Awards held at the CES in Las Vegas:
The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) honored Stormfront Studios at the 59th Annual Technology & Engineering Emmy Awards ceremony for creating Neverwinter Nights, the first graphical Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG). The Emmy event was held at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) on January 7 in Las Vegas.
Don Daglow, who led the design of Neverwinter Nights, accepted the award for Stormfront and its publishers, AOL and Wizards of the Coast. "These games are not just entertainment," Daglow said. "They build new kinds of communities and create deep people-to-people relationships. They influence people's lives in the same way as great books, inspiring movies and iconic television shows, and we're grateful to the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences for this honor."
Also honored at the ceremony for developing this new genre of entertainment were Sony Online Entertainment for Everquest, and Blizzard Entertainment for World of Warcraft.
Among the presenters at the evening ceremony were Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), legendary astronaut Buzz Aldrin, and Peter Price, president and CEO of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.
The Technology & Engineering Awards honor excellence in advances in the use, creativity and adaptation of technology that enhances or improves the consumer experience with media across multiple platforms.
Stormfront began development on Neverwinter Nights in 1989, and the game was offered on AOL from 1991-97. Its success inspired the creation of a series of hit computer games of the same name from BioWare.
Sunday - January 13, 2008
NWN - Academy of Modding Excellence Site
Luck Day writes in to inform us that The Academy of Modding Excellence, a group whose major goal is to recognize content put out by NWN and NWN2 communities and is led by Hall of Fame author BGP Hughes, now has thier own official website.
This is the organization which distributes the Golden Dragon awards.
Thanks, Lucky Day.
Friday - December 21, 2007
NWN - v1.69 Beta 2 & PRC 3.2
Beta 2 of the NWN 1.69 patch has been released by BioWare with quite a few changes since Beta 1.
In other NWN news, the Player Resource Compendium has hit v3.2 and has 10 new classes on offer - here's the intro from NW Vault's newsbit, which preceeds the full announcement:
Hall of Famer, Stratovarius, has sent some great news regarding the very popular PRC package on their fourth anniversary. This first is the release of PRC 3.2 which adds 10 new classes as well as new powers, new feats, new skills, and other new features. They also have news of what you can look forward to and a date for an Open House Chat to talk about their plans for NWN2 and more.
Thanks, Lucky Day.
Saturday - December 08, 2007
NWN - v1.69 Beta Patch
Yes, BioWare is still patching NWN. The BioWare forums has news of the 1.69 Beta for Windows users with both SoU and HotU installed and addresses some Vista specific issues.
Thursday - November 22, 2007
NWN - Golden Dragon Winners
Lucky Day writes that the AME has announced their Golden Dragon Winners for NWN community efforts. It's probably worth a look if you are still playing NWN to check out Best RPG Mod, Most Replayable Mod and so on.
Tuesday - November 20, 2007
NWN - Final Golden Dragon Awards
The last set of nominations for the Golden Dragon Awards for NWN mods is up at NW Vault, with Best Roleplaying Mod and Most Replayable Mod covered. Ossian's Darkness over Daggerford is nominated in the latter category.
Thanks, Lucky day.
Saturday - November 17, 2007
NWN - More Golden Dragon Awards
Lucky Day points out RPG Vault has a second and third round of nominations for the Golden Dragon Awards for NWN, with categories such as best adventure module, hak pack and community contribution covered.
Sunday - November 11, 2007
NWN - Golden Dragon Awards @ RPG Vault
The recently formed Academy for Modding Excellence has announced a handful of nominations for their NWN Golden Dragon Awards for 2006 (?). Included in this group is Veteran Author Award and Best Action Module.
Thanks, Lucky Day.
Sunday - March 11, 2007
NWN - Diamond Edition Review @ Game Apex
BioWare's Diamond Edition of NWN has been reviewed at Game Apex. The multi-page article has a score of 8.5/10 with aging graphics the only major criticism, although the campaign stories didn't overwhelm them:
It seems like Bioware put more into the actual game engine than the stories themselves. The main quest in the core game starts off by pitting your character against a horrific plague known as the Wailing Death. As the story progresses, the real "bad guys" are revealed and a cure for the plague grows within reach.
Saturday - February 17, 2007
NWN - Layonara SP Module Released
The folks behind the respected NWN persistent world Layonara wrote in to let us know they have released a SP module with a strong roleplaying emphasis, along with a feature called "Ambiguous Interactive Dungeons", which "allows for direct interaction in a graphical environment, very much like the old text games (Zork for instance)". Here's the blurb sent in:
Layonara Studios is proud to present a NeverWinter Nights module that is heavy in Role-play and immersion in to the World of Layonara.
Bloodpool. The very name should send cold chills down your spine. Created prior to the great cataclysm by Sinthar Bloodstone in his crusade to annihilate Dragon kind on Layonara, these pools of destructive force would later serve to pull him back to the land to exact his plans of domination and revenge on those who banished him for his crimes against the races.
The year is 1388 and there have been whispers in dark corners that a pool has been created or restored somewhere on the continent of Mistone. In a solitary seaside tower stands a force that may hold the key to its destruction or perhaps its harness. Forces collide for some may wish to rid the world of the menace of the pool yet others may seek to serve its master or even to harness its force for themselves.
You are but a raw recruit on your first mission in the entourage of a Mistonian Diplomat. Your caravan is seeking one who holds the key to these pools of despair. These are dark times and even routine travel can be dangerous. Out of the night comes the attack. Bugbears pour over the hills and advance on your small caravan. The battle roars around you then a sharp pain snaps above your eyes. Blackness drops over you...
You may download this module for NeverWinter Nights from:
Enjoy the game!
Thursday - January 04, 2007
NWN - Darkness over Daggerford Updated to version 1.2
The release notes state:
- Wearable PC cloaks have been added to the game. If you have installed the
game using the v1.2 installer, then you don't have to do anything to see the
cloaks. If you are updating the game using the v1.2 updater, then please read
the file "1.68 Cloak Instructions.txt" (included with the updater) on how to
get the cloaks working. *Note*: Cloaks your character brings into the game that
were created prior to 1.68 are visible but will still show up as beige in
- Fixed stackable items (e.g., arrows) in the Traveller's Trunk in Falias'
wagon to use the maximum stack size instead of just one of that item.
- Fixed piranhas to only bite inside pools.
- Adjusted miscellaneous immobilization issues with the Boonmoppet cutscene
triggered at the Bottom of the Hole.
- Removed duplicate Vetrixia from cliff top after following her into Umgatlik's
- Weapons no longer unequip when hag de-polymorphs player.
- Fixed miscellaneous combat/conversation issues with the dragon in Peredus'
- Gorgomorz is now immune to criticals.
- Veiti now has a better weapon and shield.
- Removed tanarukk cutscene trigger from empty smugglers' cave.
- Fixed Whiteglove's store to open correctly.
- Lula now spawns correctly in Daggerford.
- Olree now spawns reliably in the Blade Cliffs.
- Maerovyna, the Chauntea priestess, now gives her reward.
- Temotimoth shrine now reliably teleports the player into the tomb after
solving the riddle.
- Fixed character auto-export at the end of the final cutscene.
Tuesday - November 07, 2006
NWN - Premium Modules Mini-Review Article at GamerDad
GamerDad has posted and updated version of their Premium Module Review Article that includes all of the modules, describing and scoring each of them individually:
Note: this article has been updated to include the recently released Infinite Dungeons premium module. Aside from the module review, there are other comments to put the entire series into context since Atari announced they won't support any further official releases. Of course, since then the Wyvern Crown of Cormyr premium module has been released – and of course I have included a review of that. In between these modules a ‘cancelled' module – Darkness Over Daggerford – was released, and I have played through that as well. I had contemplated using that as a new ‘free module' reference, but the scope and design was for a ‘premium' module, so I have reviewed it as such and left the venerable ‘Eye of the Beholder' as the reference.
Wednesday - November 01, 2006
NWN - Darkness over Daggerford Interview #2 @ Sorcerer's Place
Sorcerer's Place has the second part of their interview with Alan Miranda from Ossian Studios on the NWN mod Darkness over Daggerford:
SP: Considering the amount of time and effort your team has poured into DoD, its removal from the PM program must have come as a shock to you and your team. What were your initial reactions, and did you have any prior knowledge that the PM program might be shut down before the release of your module?
Alan Miranda: No, there was no forewarning about it. It just landed on us with the weight of a flying elephant that suddenly forgot how to fly. We were all rather upset when the news first came through, and then watched the explosive fallout subsequently unfold on the Net. We weren’t interested in jumping into the fray, however, and focused our efforts on finishing the game to the highest quality instead.
Saturday - October 28, 2006
NWN - Darkness over Daggerford Interview @ Sorcerer's Place
Also at Sorcerer's Place is an interview with Alan Miranda from Ossian Studios about their huge Darkness over Daggerford project:
SP: Alan, you have worked for BioWare for quite a stretch of time. How did that affect your work on the module in contrast with, let's say, the work of a typical module builder, who does not have professional game development experience?
Alan Miranda: Given my professional game development background, I think my expectations for the module were set high from the start. I more or less viewed it as another game that I was making at BioWare, so it had to be of the highest quality. I brought a lot of knowledge to the team about what were good guidelines to follow, based on what I had learned at BioWare. On the flip side though, I had never created a module myself, so there was a lot I learned about the toolset from our team members along the way. They all had very good skills to begin with, but I think the high expectations of the project really encouraged them to step up to a higher level than they had worked at before on their own previous mods.
Wednesday - October 25, 2006
NWN - Wyvern Crown of Cormyr - Review @ NW Vault
NW Vault has reviewed BioWare's last Premium Module, Wyvern Crown of Cormyr. The score is 8.39/10 and here's a snip:
One thing this module does very well is convey excellent atmosphere. The beginning of the module is gritty and very dark in mood, which is augmented by a series of stirring cutscenes. My character started out destitute, underpowered, and quite a bit less capable than several of the other characters I encountered early in the module. When I arrived in Thunderstone, I was treated as an outsider and a peasant by most of the aristocracy. Even when I was invited to participate in a jousting tournament, I felt like an outsider and a pretender amongst the nobility. Later in the module, however, after my acclaim had risen due to my successes, I was treated as a genuine hero in Thunderstone. But along with that privilege came responsibility -- I felt a genuine sense of duty to defend the city against the imminent threats it faced.
Saturday - October 14, 2006
NWN - Darkness over Daggerford Wrap Report @ RPG Vault
A Wrap-Report for the once-premium NWN module Darkness over Daggerford is up at RPG Vault , with project lead Alan Miranda offering insight:
Darkness over Daggerford is a Neverwinter Nights module that attempts to bring some of the flavour from Baldur's Gate into Neverwinter. Developed by Ossian Studios in Vancouver, Canada, it was originally a BioWare Premium Module, and our goal was to make it the biggest and best premium mod BioWare had ever released. Given that I was previously a BioWare producer on the Baldur's Gate series and on Neverwinter, I felt I had some good ideas on how to enhance the Neverwinter experience.
Monday - October 09, 2006
NWN - Wyvern Crown of Cormyr - Review @ GameBanshee
GameBanshee has kicked up a review of BioWare's last NWN Premium Module - Wyvern Crown of Cormyr. The score is 7.4/10, despite the reviewer not overly enjoyng it. Here's the good stuff:
Wyvern Crown of Cormyr has a lot of things going for it. The story is set up well, and it involves people with motivations rather than caricatures that do whatever is required of them by the plot. The quests are also handled well, almost always giving you options for diplomacy versus combat, and giving you ways to role-play your character. The module also contains several new things, like the ability to ride horses and an expanded rural tile set that includes castles with ramparts and towers. And there are even some fun little details, like how you can gain titles (such as “the wise” or “the cruel”) as a reward for completing certain quests.
Wednesday - October 04, 2006
NWN: Community Tileset Project Ready for Download
The Community Tileset Project (CTP) team has release one now available for you to download. Much like how the CEP offers both module builders and players one package that adds content to the game without having to re-download hakpaks, the CTP is doing the same for tilesets! The first release offers nine full tilesets as well as one BioWare dungeon reskinned.
--> head here
Friday - September 29, 2006
NWN: Infinite Dungeons Premium Mod Review @ GameBanshee
Infinite Dungeons is the fifth premium module. As its name suggests, it is all about replayability. When you enter the module (with any character between levels 5 and 40), random dungeons are created for you. If you want, you can tune the dungeons to your class, so, for example, a rogue character would see more traps and secret doors, and find more light armor and weapons. You can also leave the dungeons balanced, so that your character would see the full assortment of equipment drops and dungeon styles.