Neverwinter Nights Chess Module

This sounds kind of interesting. Has anyone played it?

There are becoming quite a few modules available for download at NWN’s main site. I’m really impressed.

Looks neat. Yeah, there are a ton of mods. I think NWN is a better game dev tool than a game.

While I won’t argue with that idea, I do think that Bioware could have created a single player campaign with the depth of a BG2 with enough time and resources using the NWN engine and Aurora toolset. Which gives me a lot of hope that they will split future development of it into two groups so that one continues to develop the base technology of it and the other works on crafting a campaign of the quality they’re obviously capable of but seemingly didn’t have time to implement for NWN.

Gamespot has a news piece about there being more than 500 user mods available for NWN already. Even if 475 of them are boring, that’s still some nice extra material. In the user mod department, NWN has just smoked Dungeon Seige.

I’d been playing with the toolset since the early beta release and I can honestly say that there was more user content for NWN (in terms of tileset reskins, 3ds plugins, etc) by the time it was released than a lot of games ever get.

I liked NWN single player, but I don’t think it’s one of BioWare’s best efforts. It really did take a step backwards by abandoning the group in favor of controlling a single character. It’s also too long, the dialog boxes are a disaster, etc.

Oh ? There are people still playing Dungeon Seige ? :roll:

Well, I’m not too sure. I’ve reached the stage now where I’ve almost completely stopped playing, because after trying a whole load of maps, different servers and other players, my list of really recommended mods reads:


And that is all. But then I have serious issues with the toolset anyway.

Charybdis, some of the persistent world servers are interesting. I’ve played a few other mods that were ok.

I think the mods would be more interesting if we could control entire parties. Then at least you’d have a tactical battle simulator.

I’ve played them, but I don’t get much out of them. I have plenty of MMORPG accounts if I want to do that kind of thing, usually with much more variety in terms of setting, and of course much more size - too many of the persistents I’ve ended up just wandering around on my own zapping monsters with my familiar.

Although I will confess to almost shattering my jawbone with laughter when someone offered to sell me his Level 19 Monk for $100. If there’s one game where that means absolutely nada, it’s NWN…

I originally picked up NWN for the short P&P style campaign options, but it seems to have a negative effect on people - even players that I know are very much into the RPing element become obsessed with monster clubbing, and the overwhelming majority of mods have been geared towards this - a lot of dungeon hacks, not many dungeon masters on the public servers…Perhaps it’s just the people I’ve been playing with, but I’ve grown steadily less encouraged each time I’ve fired it up of late.

I’ve never had a satisfying experience with someone DMing a game, though I’ve only tried a handful. I think another poster, Legolas, nailed it when said that the DM stuff would represent a tiny niche for this game. You won’t ever find many people playing the game this way. The experience just doesn’t translate well to the computer.

I’ve played with a couple of good DMs, but in the other games I’ve always felt like I was wasting my time. If I want a dungeon hack, I’ll fire up Diablo II. If I want to meet people and roleplay, I’ll kick open a MMORPG. I’m not an AD&D player in any form but CRPG, so I’m not especially bothered by the differences - and the attitude from most players is so much based on “CRUSH! KILL! EXPERIENCE!” that any of the narrative elements have fallen by the wayside already. For me, the only type of RPG that I can’t get already online is quest based - and so far good ones have been thin on the ground due to all the scripting involved if there isn’t going to be a DM involved. I can’t fix the situation myself by downloading mods because I’m on a 56k connection and it plays terribly, leaving me stuck with whichever mods are in vogue that week.

Random side note: I never, EVER want to play Chapter One again.

I don’t think the single character is a step back, although the henchman limitation was forced. I would say I equally enjoy controlling one vs many in rpgs (and that’s a division that’s existed since the original days of rogue-like vs party games). It’s just that in NWN you lost the tactical and party building aspects and it wasn’t replaced with a single character experience nearly as engrossing as say the Fallout series.

I still think it could have been salvaged, even made into a great game but all the locked chests every 5 feet and dialogue that could be repeated until you made your insight check was ridiculous. My point is that I think a mod developer or Bioware themselves could make an amazing game, especially with that toolset.

But I think maybe Mark would be disappointed in the single character aspect regardless.

As hack and slash, NWN doesn’t do it as well as Diablo, as you say. The story’s interesting enough in NWN, but the presentation of the story is so dull that it made me grumpy about it.

There are just little things from D&D that don’t translate well to the computer. In a PNP game the thief just says, “I’m checking the chests for traps” and the DM does a check and it’s done. In the CRPG, I have to move to each chest, wait to see if I detect a trap, then disarm it, then pick the lock, etc. The mechanical aspects of doing that are dull.

Then there are the side quests. I have to roam around in an area to find the NPC to fight or talk to. I imagine in a PNP setting that’s all handled by the DM. “You go into the black forest to find the werewolf [rolls dice]. Hmmm…a day passes and you don’t find him. Next night you look again [rolls dice]. You found him!”

The game was good enough that I wanted to finish, but it wasn’t good enough for me to not set it aside a couple of times before I did finish. I think Morrowind, with all its faults, is a superior single player game.

Wouldn’t BioWare be better off spending time crushing bugs and solving that farcical Securom bug in particular?

I want to play this game but I’m not getting it until BioWare produces a few more patches.

MG Nathan

I don’t know, I never finished BG2 or BG (wasn’t really fond of it) but I managed to finish NWN which indicates maybe not that is was better but I certainly enjoyed it more.

– Xaroc

Wouldn’t BioWare be better off spending time crushing bugs and solving that farcical Securom bug in particular

You just answered your own question. It’s a “securom bug,” Not a"neverwinter nights bug." We just happened to be the first company that patched their game since Securom made some changes to their programs.

Additionally, the module was created by one of the members of our QA team in his spare time–we still have our Live Team working on fixing bugs and such.

As an aside, there are plenty of other cool things that people are doing with the toolset–I saw a slot machine module a couple days ago–basically you pulled a lever, and three shafts of light acted as the slot-machine-dealies. Pretty cool.

I actually rather liked the single character aspect of NWN, because it really picked up the pace of encounters and stuff. Though I still felt like I had plenty of time to pick spells and “strategize” (as much as one does in DnD). It was a nice in-between from Baldur’s Gate and Diablo.

And I think the story is as deep as BG/BG2.

But like Mark said, the presentation of that story is boring. The game just dosn’t have much personality. You’re off in a “combat zone” hacking and slashing and setting traps and picking locks for an hour, and there’s just no character in that. Then you’re back in town clicking through endless conversation trees, which has more character, but screws with the game’s pace to much.

For a sequel or add-on, I’d rather see more scripted events and NPCs scattered throughout the adventuring areas, with shorter dialogs and more voice. I’d also like to see less repetition of the portriats - that made too many people feel generic.

If NWN had half the NPCs (with unique portraits/voices) that talked just as much, only in a lot shorter conversations spread all over the maps instead of looong conversations concentrated in town, I think it would have had more personality. And the pacing of the story’s presentation would have been better.

But then, all that might have just made it harder to play through co-op. Who knows.

I have a lot of fun playing user modules online. As far as DMing goes, fully DMed stuff doesn’t seem to be that great. It seems to work best when people are playing a module that can fully handle everything without any DM intervention at all, and the DM just pops in and does some cool stuff. I played one module where the DM popped in and took over a hill giant, beating on our enemies and saying “me like hu-mans!” He trudged around with us and because we were so nice to him, he ended up sacrificing himself to save our butts. It was a nice extra touch.

I’ve finished it, but I don’t remember it. I can recite near as dammit everything that happens in BG, BG2, PS:T et al, but squinting at text on an LCD screen as every yappy elf in Faerun turned up to give their life story got old fast. I also hated many of the more ‘game’ elements that were thrown in, such as “He will continue his story when you gain levels” and the way that NPCs would rattle off the same speech to every single party member despite the fact that everyone could see it and their journals were recording it anyway. There wasn’t anything I can really put my finger on and say “Yes, that’s what sucked!”, just a lot of little things that mounted up over time.

And the toolset. I would dock NWN major marks for the map design part of it any day of the week, even though the rest is excellent.

There are just little things from D&D that don’t translate well to the computer. In a PNP game the thief just says, “I’m checking the chests for traps” and the DM does a check and it’s done. In the CRPG, I have to move to each chest, wait to see if I detect a trap, then disarm it, then pick the lock, etc. The mechanical aspects of doing that are dull.

Also, in the CRPG version it becomes “Quick! Chests! Everyone!” as the party blitzes around trying to tag them first and thus get the contents. Everyone knows the story, so any gung-ho players rip off into the distance to cane monsters, dragging everyone else with them. I’ve said on many times things like “Look, I know we all know that there’s a Cultist in the inn, but there is no possible way that we could know this yet. Could we NOT split up to take him out?”. I’m not an AD&D nut, I just enjoy it when people try to roleplay and give life to the world. For instance, I quite often use one character - a supercilious sorceress called Liena who always speaks in the third person and whose most commonly heard saying is “The city will be in our debt? Ah, so you have read Liena’s price sheet!” Sounds more annoying than it is - people generally find it amusing. And hey, it gives me something to do while splatting Gulnan. Again.

I think Morrowind, with all its faults, is a superior single player game.

I gather I’m persona non grata in some quarters of the UK fan site for giving it 78% or so. Morrowind really, really bored me as a game, and I couldn’t stand its appalling character balancing.