October 2003

Hordes of the Underdark Preview at ActionTrip
Posted Friday, October 31, 2003 - 12:31 CET by Yerril

ActionTrip have posted their preview of the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of the Underdark. It's extremely flattering, and puts the game in a very positive light. Here's what they said:

As you slowly venture through mysterious and unexplored lands, you'll run into a charming welcoming comity that consists of the following new enemy types: Harpy, Azer, Demilich, Demonflesh Golem, Mithral Golem, Beholder, Drider, Mind Flayer, Spider Demon, and many others. Actually, there's 16 innovative opponents altogether, so it's safe to say you'll have your hands full. Some beings you'll encounter are quite ruthless. For instance, the Drow and Mind Flayers live in a society based on enslavement - in a certain level you'll be able to witness a slave auction.

Read the rest here.

Post Comments (0)


Throne of Bhaal Available for Macintosh
Posted Friday, October 31, 2003 - 12:10 CET by Yerril

MacPlay are now taking pre-orders for the Baldur's Gate 2 expansion, Throne of Bhaal. This pretty much confirms that the game will be making an appearance on the Mac.

You can pre-order it here.

Post Comments (0)


Bioware Reveal Hordes of the Underdark System Requirements
Posted Friday, October 31, 2003 - 11:52 CET by Yerril

Bioware have released the system requirements for the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of the Underdark. Processor-wise, it's nothing particularly hefty, at least not compared to The Temple of Elemental Evil. The minimum requirements are as follows:

Processor: Pentium III 800 MHz
Operating System: Windows 98/ME/2000/XP
RAM (Windows 98/ME/2000): 128 MB
RAM (Windows XP): 256 MB
Hard Disk: 1.5 GB
CD ROM Drive: 8x
DirectX: DirectX version 8.1b or higher
Video Card: 32 MB video card with Hardware T&L support
Sound Card: DirectX certified sound card
Multiplayer: Local area network with TCP/IP protocol
Multiplayer via Modem: 56Kbps (2 players max)


See them here.

Post Comments (0)


Last Week's Poll's Results
Posted Thursday, October 30, 2003 - 19:14 CET by Sorcerer

What we asked:

Q: Would you ever upgrade or replace your PC just to support a new game?
(330 votes total)

Maybe, depends on the game (198) 60%
Yes, of course (97) 29%
No, never (35) 11%

The majority of poll participants (60%) voted in favour of upgrading or replacing their PC to support a new game, if the game really interested them enough.

29% of those who voted would do so unconditionally, however.

Only 11% of the people who voted in the poll would never upgrade or replace their PC just to support a new game.

  • Current Poll
  • Previous Polls

    Post Comments (0)


    Another Temple of Elemental Evil Review at Gaming Illustrated
    Posted Thursday, October 30, 2003 - 13:06 CET by Yerril

    Gaming Illustratad have posted their review of The Temple of Elemental Evil. They give it an overall score of 62%, claiming it is far too buggy for most players. Here's a clip:

    Dungeons and Dragons or otherwise diehard CRPG fans with a high bug/annoyance threshold should be pleased with the fine implementation of the D&D rules and the many quest options. Other serious RPG fans set on playing an otherwise great adaption of D&D rules and classic module should wait for the game’s patch. The bugs make the game far too aggravating for anyone else.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Temple of Elemental Evil Review at Jolt
    Posted Thursday, October 30, 2003 - 12:58 CET by Yerril

    Jolt.co.uk have reviewed The Temple of Elemental Evil, the latest offering from Troika. They give it an overall score of 80%. Here's what they said:

    It was a tough call trying to rate The Temple of Elemental Evil. No doubt that you get value for money, even without multiplayer. No doubt that the attention to detail is superb. And no doubt that the game is very enjoyable if you like your RPGs to be slow-paced and tactical. However the game has some very obvious bugs and it even crashes at times, sometimes frequently. These are bugs that in no way could have been missed by Troika. It's a shame, because they mar an otherwise excellent RPG. Thankfully a patch is on the way, although frankly it should never have been needed.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Wednesday
    Posted Wednesday, October 29, 2003 - 23:33 CET by Sorcerer

    Another week's around and here are the latest NWN Wednesday goodies:

    Deekin's Big Adventure
    Deekin's Big AdventureHordes of the Underdark will take adventurers to the vile, lightless world of festering evil and corpulent nightmares fashioned from horrors undreamt. Who better to brave this dark world of creeping malice and lurking doom? Deekin of course! Check out Part 1 of Deekin's Big Adventure featuring the new Underdark tileset! Discuss.

    NWCon Chat Log - Robes Are In Hordes!
    NWCon Chat Log - Robes Are In Hordes!Last night BioWare employees attended a community chat organized by Neverwinter Connections as a part of NWCon. Maximus has organized a chat log available on NWVault, revealing tidbits like Robes being included in Hordes of the Underdark! Discuss.

    Hordes Spells, Feats and a Screen!
    Hordes Spells, Feats and a Screen!Cover your ears before checking out this loud new spell released to fan sites, Horizikaul’s Boom. 3 new Epic level feats have also been posted at RPG Vault, and a new Hordes screenshot has been released! Discuss.

    Module Contest Update - Close Date Nov 9th
    Module Contest Update - Close Date Nov 9thThe close date is nearing for the NWVault Module Contest to create a module that bridges the Shadows of Undrentide and Hordes of the Underdark expansions. Everyone is invited to participate - so check out the details and submit your module before Nov 9th! Discuss.

    Post Comments (0)


    BioWare Reveals New HotU Spell
    Posted Wednesday, October 29, 2003 - 17:33 CET by Sorcerer

    Check out the latest new Hordes of the Underdark spell, courtesy of BioWare:

    Horizikaul’s Boom

    Caster Level(s): Wizard / Sorcerer 1
    Innate Level: 1
    School: Evocation
    Descriptor(s): Sonic
    Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
    Range: Short
    Area of Effect / Target: One creature
    Duration: Instantaneous
    Additional Counter Spells:
    Save: Will partial
    Spell Resistance: Yes

    You blast the target with loud and high-pitched sounds. The target takes 1d4 points of sonic damage per two caster levels (maximum 5d4) and must make a Will save or be deafened for 1d4 rounds.

    Post Comments (0)


    SP Happenings #21
    Posted Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 21:24 CET by Sorcerer

    While I still haven't actually started with the conversion to the new design, I've spent some time this week testing the content converters BTA so graciously provided. We've managed to really perfect them now by making some last-minute tweaks to their code, so they're about as good as they can be. After some dissatisfaction on my end with having to redo a huge number of title tables to make them look good in the new design, Catbert managed to come up with a solution that didn't occur to us before in weeks (figures), and the whole problem was eliminated in 5 minutes. If for nothing else, it paid off to wait this long for this, since it will save me from spending dozens of hours on tedious manual code replacement.

    I'm still waiting for that bloody package with the SP merchandise samples to arrive, so no news on that. I just hope the whole thing didn't get lost somewhere. That would make me *really* mad. In any event, a site update will most likely go up before the next SP Happenings.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Monday, October 27, 2003 - 23:32 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Epic Spell Selection: Epic Spells are selected like you would select any other epic feat. You need to meet the prerequisite for those spells, which are usually a certain rank in spellcraft (Items and skill foci do not count). Only certain classes can select epic spells: Wizards, Sorcerers, Pale masters, Clerics and Druids. Epic spells are not divided into Arcane and Divine magic, but Wizards, Sorcerors, and Pale Masters have a slightly larger list to choose from. Epic spells are not subject to casting failure and they cut right through spell resistance.

    HotU: Caps
    We have to stay true to the book when it comes to capped spells. However there is a good number of spells that do not have any artificial cap on their damage (i.e. flame arrow). I expect these spells to become more popular.

    Feats
    There are some interesting feats for spellcaster's to make sure their spells are something to be feared.

    Spell Saves
    Usually your primary casting ability modifier is taken into account for saving throws. Since you have access to the Great Ability Score feats, you can influence your saving throws

    Epic spells
    Epic spells ignore spell resistance, can not be interrupted and have "epic" saving throw requirements (where applicable)

    Plus
    The fears you are voicing in your post are clearly aimed at Player vs Player situations. The majority of modules and worlds that offer PvP have their own set of rules and their own "balancing" by their creator's anyway.

    As for our campaign, you can be sure that you will have a good and challenging time as a caster ... as with all the other classes.


    Features: There is so much time and there are so many features to pick from. The featurelist for Hordes has been finalized for quite a while and the abovementioned functions are not on this list. That's all information you can get from me on that topic, because there is no more. We got about 140 new script scripting commands with Hordes, so I think that scripter's get quite a lot of bang for their buck in this expansion pack. It's always hard to accept that your favourite feature is not on the list of features that made it in, but that's the way it goes. Given infinite time and budget, we could implement them all, but this is the real world, and there are milestones, budgets and deadlines. Will these features ever be in NWN? I won't rule it out completly but given the already huge list of things that the live-team could do after the release, I think the chances are lower than low. Same goes for subraces. Please take this answer as universal explaination for any No or Won't happen you read from me on these boards. If you need more information on this topic, I recommend a search for 'dead kitten'. (don't ask). As a side note, the customize character feature in Hordes allows you to change the appearance/portrait of an existing character before joining a game.

    David Gaider, Designer

    GetAppearance: Actually, as I understand it there is simply no information retained anywhere in the engine based on what body part types have been selected for the PC. This is according to one of the programmers on the expansion. Be it an oversight or whatever, there was never any need for that information before and so the information is simply not there to get... which is why we have SetAppearanceType and not just SetAppearance. So that's why you won't get a GetAppearance for body parts anytime soon. There is no information there to get to identify that part. I have no doubt that they could add that info in if they really wanted to... but it is not a situation of using data that already exists, and so would be a major endeavour to say the least.

    Post Comments (0)


    Hordes of the Underdark Interview at ToTheGame
    Posted Monday, October 27, 2003 - 20:48 CET by Yerril

    ToTheGame have interviewed Darcy Pajak and Sydney Tang, assistant producer and lead toolset programmer of the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of the Underdark. Here's what they said:

    Darcy: Among the many changes we have added are: the ability to have up to two henchmen in the party; a new level cap of 40, in accordance with D&D Epic-level rules; more than 50 new feats and 40 new spells; increased polycounts in all the new tilesets and creatures; 16 amazing new monsters; and some new visual elements. There are also new scripting functions for the large community of module builders.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Hordes of the Underdark Interview at Gamer's Pulse
    Posted Monday, October 27, 2003 - 20:40 CET by Yerril

    Gamer's Pulse have posted their interview with Tom Ohle, Public Relations Specialist at Bioware, the company responsible for the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of the Underdark. There's nothing particularly new, but it covers most of the aspects of the game. Here's a clip:

    The most significant addition in Hordes of the Underdark is the ability to take your character from NWN or Shadows of Undrentide above level 20, in accordance with the D&D Epic-Level rules. Other than that, we have loads of new spells and feats, a bunch of new skills, 6 great new prestige classes, the ability to have two henchmen, and lots more. It’s a really feature-rich expansion.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    NWCon Commences
    Posted Sunday, October 26, 2003 - 21:48 CET by Yerril

    NWCon, an online Neverwinter Nights convention, is running from 25th October to 2nd November. NWCon is designed to give all fans of Neverwinter Nights a chance to play, DM, or learn more about all the various aspects of NWN and the NWN community. There are a number of events planned, including gaming, an exclusive persistent world, and expert panels in a dedicated IRC channel to inform and advise.

    The convention even features prizes, graciously donated by Bioware, in various fields, for both players and Dungeon Masters. The grand prize is a copy of the Neverwinter Nights Collector's Edition, which includes a copy of the game, a soundtrack CD, a poster, a black t-shirt, a mousepad with NWN map, and an art book. Other prizes include official artwork, mugs and ski-caps.

    To find out more about NWCon and to join in the fun, visit the official site here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Bioware One of Canada's Top 100 Employers
    Posted Sunday, October 26, 2003 - 21:14 CET by Yerril

    Bioware have been recognized as one of the top 100 employers in Canada. The list was narrowed down from 51,000 applicants, and was based on Human Resource practices, exceptional growing success and contribution to the community. Here's an excerpt from the press release:

    BioWare Corp. is honoured to announce that it has been recognized as one of Canada's Top 100 Employers. "This award is a great honour, and it reflects the continuous hard work of our Human Resources department to make BioWare a great place to work. It is important to BioWare because it reflects our core value of quality in our workplace, and it also demonstrates that BioWare is an employer of choice for prospective employees not only in Canada, but world-wide," said Joint CEO Dr. Ray Muzyka.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 20:15 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Army in HotU: In Theory you can have your own army in hordes as well

    My Pale Master/Wizard/Ranger
    My Henchman #1
    My Henchman #2
    My Summoned Vampire Mage
    My Animal Companion
    My Familiar
    My Summoned Vampire Mage's Summoned Monster
    A Dominated Creature
    A few other option's you don't know about yet

    but that's just theoretical


    Classes: The classes are locked down and won't change before the game is out. Server operators who feel a certain class could be unbalanced in PvP in their world have all the tools at hand to modify the things they feel necessary. I suggest you first try to play the current class before going into lengthy theoretical arguments about how balanced or unbalanced things are

    Quote: The CoT has everything the fighter has, and extra abilities/saves on top of it.

    Sorry, you are wrong here. No weapon specialization. 1 epic feat per 4 levels, instead of 1 per 2. No epic weapon specialization.

    Post Comments (0)


    Yet Another Hordes of the Underdark Interview at Game Banshee
    Posted Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 19:37 CET by Yerril

    Game Banshee have posted an account of their interview with Tom Ohle and Darcy Pajak, Public Relations Specialist and Assistant Producer of the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of the Underdark. Here's what they said:

    Darcy: We are adding 6 new prestige classes for Hordes of the Underdark: the Dwarven Defender, which turns a Dwarf fighter into a immovable battle machine; the Champion of Torm, which is an absolute bane to evil and can kill powerful evil creatures in one hit; the Pale Master, who specializes in the black arts of the undead; the Shifter, a class that can take on the shape and abilities of both animals and monsters; and the Weapon Master, a powerful fighting machine. Last but not least, there is the Red Dragon Disciple. This class gains some of the strength and abilities of a red dragon. The BioWare community requested all of these new classes and we hope they enjoy them.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    The Temple of Elemental Evil Patch - Partial List of Fixes
    Posted Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 19:31 CET by Yerril

    On the official Atari forums, there is a partial list of fixes in the forthcoming Temple of Elemental Evil patch. The list does not cover all the bugs, by any means, but it is a good start.

    • Fixed mouse lockups due to pathing in combat.
    • Fixed crashes when switching maps.
    • Random crash bugs dealing with invalid object handles being stored in conditions should no longer crash.
    • If you kill everyone in the game, there is an end slide about Feldrin escaping, but he never appeared in the game. Feldrin now appears in the game and will have dialog with the party.
    • Produce flame can no longer be cast multiple times in the first round it is cast.
    • Touch attack spells no longer allow infinite actions in the first round they are cast.
    • Magic weapon, Greater magic weapon, Magic vestment and Keen edge are no longer permanent.
    • Several corrections to spells using incorrect caster levels.
    • Tumble now properly works for characters not in medium or heavy armor.
    • Ranger feats related to medium and heavy armor are now correct, including two-weapon fighting.
    • Rangers correctly get animal companions at level 4 (rather than level 5).
    • Movement penalties for MEDIUM and HEAVY armor no longer apply if you are medium or more encumbered.
    • Non-torso armor no longer applies movement penalties if they are classified as "Medium" or "Heavy" armor (e.g. chainmail gloves won't reduce movement but chainmail armor will).
    • Experience now awarded for monsters with CR > 24.
    • NPC's will not mark loot as non-transferable if they do not pick it up (which happened when their inventory was full but they were trying to loot).
    • NPC's cannot be made angry at party members while they are in the party (this avoids the problem of disbanding them and them going KOS on you).


    The post can be found here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Hordes of the Underdark Interview with Bioware at Neverwinter Vault
    Posted Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 19:20 CET by Yerril

    Neverwinter Vault have conducted an interview with some members of the Hordes of the Underdark team, including producer Trent Oster. The interview covers many of the new features in the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, and features two exclusive new screenshots. Here's a clip:

    There will be many more special effects in Hordes of the Underdark similar in approach to the kobold jumpers from the Shadows of Undrentide expansion. Our designers have created some amazing visuals using existing effects, in addition to designing new effects specifically for this adventure. Expect Hordes of the Underdark to have more in-game cinematic work than any of our previous titles and expect to ask yourself "how did they do that?" quite often.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 0:41 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Wings: We got these wing types:
    Angel
    Bat
    Bird
    Demon
    Red Dragon
    Butterfly

    They only work on NPCs, with the exception of the red dragon disciple who gets his red dragon wings at level 9


    Divine Wrath: Without a positive charisma modifier, you are not able to take any benefit from Divine Wrath, as it will not last even one round.

    Epic Feats: There are epic feats that raise an ability score by +1 each time you take them.

    Champion of Torm: The Champion of Torm gets 1 epic bonus feat every 4 levels after 10. At least that's what the 2da files say at the moment, and I don't think that's going to change.

    Post Comments (0)


    Last Week's Poll's Results
    Posted Friday, October 24, 2003 - 22:58 CET by Sorcerer

    What we asked:

    Q: Have you ever considered getting a body modification (haircut, tattoo, piercing, etc.) in the style of a character from a CRPG?
    (341 votes total)

    No (255) 75%
    Yes (86) 25%

    The poll results show that the majority of poll participants (75%) have never considered getting any sort of body modification in the style of a character from a CRPG.

    25% of those who voted, however, have done so. We could say that CRPGs have quite a considerable effect on a quarter of their fans, as far as this is concerned...

  • Current Poll
  • Previous Polls

    Post Comments (0)


    Shadows of Undrentide Reviewed at GameZone
    Posted Friday, October 24, 2003 - 18:59 CET by Yerril

    Somewhat late by now, GameZone have posted their review of the Neverwinter Nights expansion, Shadows of Undrentide. Overall, the title is given 8.5 out of 10. Here's what they said:

    Shadows of Undrentide is a solid adventure, there is no doubt about that. But while it promises 20 hours of gameplay, it is nothing when compared to the original title. And perhaps that is the one thing that really stunts this game’s reception. While it is an expansion, it has to live up to its parent title - and in that regard, it falls a little short. This is still a lot of fun - it just doesn’t last very long.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Hordes of the Underdark Interview at Gamespot
    Posted Thursday, October 23, 2003 - 21:30 CET by Yerril

    Gamespot are featuring an interview with Darcy Pajak and Trent Oster, assistant producer and producer of the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of the Underdark. Here's a clip:

    TO: I think this expansion will be even more popular than the highly successful Shadows of Undrentide expansion we released in the spring. Neverwinter Nights fans will enjoy the new story and the truly amazing power his/her character can wield as an epic-level character. The module makers are going to love the new tilesets, the new scripting commands, and the sheer volume of new feats and abilities.

    DP: I am hoping the expansion will be well-received by the community. We have added so much to it that I think most people will be finding new things in the game constantly. From new skills and feats to unique characters and items in the game, there is a lot of detail for someone to discover. The mod builders have a huge range of new monsters and some very good-looking tilesets to build higher-level adventures.


    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Wednesday, October 22, 2003 - 22:28 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    HotU: Your observation is wrong. There are a lot of "smaller" things that have been requested by the community and that are included in Hordes. But there is only limited time, so not everything you dream of can be included. Actually larger features are much more likely to be not included, as there is only time for so few larger features in an expansion pack. Examples?

    - New Heads
    - New Weapon Color
    - Dyekits
    - New item icons
    - some long requested functions: SetStolen, SetCursedFlag, etc
    - Automatic Backup for modules in the toolset
    - Arcane Spellfailure property
    - New voicesets
    - ...

    all these are "smaller" features that have been included in Hordes. Bottomline:
    There are "small" features and there are other "small" features, and we make decisions which "small" features get integrated in our game, based on available time, benefit for our campaign, benefit for the community and technical difficulty. Some feature's just don't make it through this process, for one or another reason.

    Who Gets Epic Spells: Wizards, Druids, Clerics, Sorceror's and Pale Masters

    Quote: Are there Epic level DIVINE spells? Like your God giving you temporary Immortality or something?

    Epic spells don't distinguish between dinine and arcane spells, all classes get to pick spells from the same pool.


    Quote: There is currently a SetLocked function. Was wondering if the unlocked function would make it in.

    SetLocked has a boolean parameter to set the locked state for an object to TRUE or FALSE. This already allows you to lock or unlock containers and doors (has been in since the released).But HotU has more: SetStolen has been added lately....


    Monks: The monks unarmed attack does not qualify for the superior weapon focus feat.

    Quote: Do the dyekits require any type of skill check?

    No


    Quote: First off... WOW!! This is something that will really enhance the game experience for me, (some of the coolest armor out there is U*G*L*Y) after all, epic characters need epic looking armor. One quick question, I believe it was asked before but...Will this skill work in the origional OC, and if I take a dye kit into to the OC, will that also work, or is it scripted into the campaign?

    I did not try it, but at least the armor and weapon appearance modification should work out of the box in both old campaigns.

    Armor made from mithral has a lower chance for arcane spell failure.


    Quote: Quick question about changing armor/helmet colors. Are you restricted to the "official" color pallete? Or can you also get the "pure white" "pure black" colors that you can achieve by fooling the color selector in the toolset. ie. Those "unsupported" colors below the bottom line of colors (grayish black, bright gold, stainless steel, pure black, pure white) - are those going to be supported officially as of HotU? Or are they still an Easter Egg only available through toolset to those that know of it...

    Our default dyekits don't have those colors, however you can create your own dyekits in the toolset with any color of the appropriate pallette available.


    Quote: Well that is one question I have semi-answered. Another is can you use this feat to copy scrolls? Just trying to find any useability for this feat for sorcerers. Since sorcerors have very few spells they know, this feat seems quite useless to them unless they can copy scrolls.

    No you can't copy scrolls. The sorceror's spell selection limitation is his penalty for being flexible when selecting the spells he wants to cast. This feat is not going to remove this limitation


    David Gaider, Designer

    Quote: What about the female elf heads? Any like straight shoulderish length hair for them?

    There's at least one new female elf head that I remember which has shoulder-length curly hair, and one which has shoulder-length straight hair.

    I think there are two new halfling heads per gender? Something like that. Most of the new heads are for elves and humans.

    Yes. One of the new half-orc heads is completely bald.


    Quote: How about more Dwarves with beards

    Yes. Two out of the three new dwarf heads have very dwarven-looking beards. Heh... so does one of the new female dwarven heads, in fact (cute little braided beard).


    Quote: Or Gnomes with out hats?

    None of the new heads have headgear.


    Quote: Or a hooded head for each race?

    I believe the halfling and elves have a hooded head for each gender (though much of the face is covered, as well).

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Wednesday
    Posted Wednesday, October 22, 2003 - 22:23 CET by Sorcerer

    Another week's around and here are the latest NWN Wednesday goodies:

    New Prestige Class - Champion of Torm
    Champions of Torm are mighty warriors who dedicate themselves to Torm's cause, defending holy ground, destroying enemies of the church, and slaying mythical beasts. Champions of Torm are one of the 6 new Prestige Classes included in Hordes of the Underdark. Discuss.

    New Hordes Scripting Commands
    Get the technical details on a collection of the new scripting commands coming in Hordes of the Underdark, including the oft-requested function to change a creature's appearance. Discuss.


    Hordes Spells, Feats and a Screen!
    Get your sneak on with Improved Sneak Attack, Self Concealment 10% and Epic Dodge, three new Hordes feats posted at the RPG Vault. Absorb the Scintillating Sphere, a new Hordes spell currently electrifying fan sites (check below). Feast your eyes on a new Hordes screenshot and a Harpy profiled. Discuss.

    Post Comments (0)


    New Hordes of the Underdark Spell Revealed
    Posted Wednesday, October 22, 2003 - 18:24 CET by Sorcerer

    Check out the latest new spell from the second Neverwinter Nights expansion that BioWare has just revealed:

    Scintillating Sphere

    Caster Level(s): Wizard / Sorcerer 3
    Innate Level: 3
    School: Evocation
    Descriptor(s): Electricity
    Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
    Range: Medium
    Area of Effect / Target: Huge
    Duration: Instantaneous
    Additional Counter Spells:
    Save: Reflex 1/2
    Spell Resistance: Yes

    The caster unleashes a crackling electric projectile that explodes upon all within the area of effect for 1d6 points of electric damage per caster level, to a maximum of 10d6.

    Post Comments (0)


    The Temple of Elemental Evil Reviewed at GameZone
    Posted Wednesday, October 22, 2003 - 17:50 CET by Yerril

    The Temple of Elemental Evil has been reviewed over at GameZone. The reviewer seems to have had little trouble with the bugs that almost everyone else is complaining about, and gave the game a final score of 8.4 out of 10. Here's a clip:

    In many ways, Temple of Elemental Evil is typical of the look and style of the genre. In many other ways, this game has a unique quality that insures replayability and many different outcomes. This is a game that those who are serious about D&D-based RPGs should have in their library.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (2)


    SP Happenings #20
    Posted Tuesday, October 21, 2003 - 23:00 CET by Sorcerer

    Well, I'm back on track with the SP Happenings, but without much news to report. Practically nothing has changed since last week. I'm still waiting for the SP merchandise to arrive, and still haven't really started with the conversion to the new site design. I've simply had so many real life issues to deal with over the last few days that I'm still planning ahead, making the time for the conversion. Depending on the amount of content I gather, I might do another small site update and start on the conversion right after that.

    Post Comments (2)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Monday, October 20, 2003 - 22:11 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Resting: Resting compresses time, maybe not technically but gameplay wise. When you run around there are no checks as you find the monsters... If you rest, there are checks to see if the monsters find you. If you just stand around for a few hourse ... I would assume you are trying to bore yourself to death and I certainly would not interfere with that.

    Quote: Just to confirm a few things:
    1) these are skills, not feats, right?

    2) what classes will have these as class skills? I'm guessing the fighter will at least, since craft skills are their only class skills that are in nwn now.

    3) does it just create mundane stuff, or magical stuff too?

    Can someone customize a sword to have +1d6 fire damage?


    1) yes, these are skills.

    2) all classes that have craft as class skill in PnP.

    3) Mundane items. Craft skills do not allow the creation of magical items in D&D.


    Quote: Ok, so how do you customize a longsword and have it remain a mundane item? (I know the skill = mundane, feat = magical, just wasn't sure if that was being rigidly stuck to). So with every merchant you meet having almost a full array of mundane items and cheap prices, what benefits are their for the player to roll their own by using the skill? Can you put non-magical improvements on the weapon? such as masterwork or some kind of extra spikey bits that do extra piercing damage?

    You mean take the longsword and change its blade to look different? ... yes. Take the longsword and add any item property ... no, not via crafting skills ... but there may be other ways to customize your weapons in the campaign...

    If you would happen to find mithral or adamantine ... you could use it with your crafting skill to create a suit of armor out of it ... or other things.


    Quote: Sounds good to me, I'd imagine adamantine giving the armour DR or even fortification, if that were to be added...

    You can't use it to upgrade an existing armor, but you could use it to create a fresh suit of mithral armor...


    Beholders Vs. Spellcasters: My little eyeball companion usually manages to distract them long enough so they gaze the other way and my palemaster can sneak up to the beholder to give him a slap with his undead arm.

    The beholder has a custom AI that allows him to decide when to use his anti magic ray (i.e. when a fully buffed up fighter comes charging his way, he usually will use his central eye once). Beholders also tend to avoid using their central eye if that would cancel out the effects of their rays on a target (i.e. slow or charm). We did some experiments with having the beholder attack multiple targets, but this does not work to well with the NWN engine, so usually they will concentrate blasting one target into oblivion .. which can happen quite fast. There may be occasions where they split their attacks between to targets, but these won't happen very often.


    Blackguard & Epic Feats: I think there is an epic feat which allows you to add fighter levels to your blackguard companion....

    Quote: Will we have to take that feat multiple times to make it actually work? Or can we just take it once and enjoy the improvements?

    Once

    Post Comments (0)


    Hordes of the Underdark Interview at HomeLan Fed
    Posted Sunday, October 19, 2003 - 13:22 CET by Yerril

    HomeLan Fed have posted an interview with BioWare Assistant Producer Darcy Pajak. It covers some pretty basic stuff, but is interesting nevertheless. It also features some very cool screenshots of the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of the Underdark. Graphically, they are fairly impressive, and show off the new camera abilities. Here's a clip:

    There are many reasons why we wanted to work directly on the second expansion pack. Our plans always had us working on the second expansion pack internally. We wanted to add many technically difficult features and systems to the second expansion pack, and only by doing it ourselves could we ensure everything we wanted to do was added. Second, the Forgotten Realms Underdark is very interesting and has a lot of potential for great adventures, so we were excited to get working in the setting.

    See it all here.

    Post Comments (0)


    The Temple of Elemental Evil Reviewed at Gameplanet
    Posted Sunday, October 19, 2003 - 13:12 CET by Yerril

    The Temple of Elemental Evil has been reviewed over at Gameplanet. It's overall very positive, and gives the game a final score of 4 out of 5. Here's what they said:

    All in all Temple of Elemental Evil is perhaps the best adaptation of D&D onto the PC we have seen and is a must buy for lovers of the original table top game. Only the small quirks and bugs prevent it scoring more highly. If you are new to the genre be warned - this game is very tough. Try Neverwinter Nights instead.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (1)


    The Temple of Elemental Evil Reviewed at Game Revolution
    Posted Sunday, October 19, 2003 - 13:02 CET by Yerril

    A review of The Temple of Elemental Evil can be found at Game Revolution. Unfortunately, it's not very flattering, and the game is given a final score of C-. Here's what they said:

    So in the end, what we have with The Temple of Elemental Evil is a good RPG brought down by the very thing it touted as a feature: complexity. Buggy gameplay and a distinct lack of plot turn this promising game into a lesson in mediocrity. If you do have the urge to buy it, wait until Atari finally fixes the game. Until then, there are plenty of other RPGs out there to satisfy.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (1)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Friday, October 17, 2003 - 20:50 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Monks: Monks get discipline in HotU. Epic Monks are faster than anything else, haste just looks pale whey you see them fly by

    Quote: If you want to exploit a current polymorph/wildshape bug that I doubt they will fix:
    Leave all your physical stats at 8 and when you level up shift into a form that have the stats you need for a prereq to a feat. Example power attack requires 13 str, wildshape into a bear before you hit the level up button and power attack will be on your list.


    I fixed that "exploit", but with a different intention. Most of the forms have only 1 or 2 stats that are changed, the rest is left at the shifter's original values. This way a shifter will benefit from his high dexterity, even when switching into a "strong" form, because his dex does not change. The side effect for this is that you are going to suck pretty much if you leave those at 8.


    David Gaider, Designer

    Quote: Whoooaaaa cool. If Im reading this right I could set it up so my Dwarf Fighter could get cursed and have a pair of Butterfly wings applied to him.

    Well, no. I should have been clearer. I meant PC models as in the models for the various races that PC's can play... human, elf, dwarf, etc. You can still only apply the wings to NPC's in the toolset. This is not a player feature, this is a toolset feature that allows you to create some varied creatures.


    Wing Models: The harpy model's wings are not seperate from the main model... so no, they may not be used anywhere. I don't think their wings are really what you'd want to use for avariel though, would you? Even so, avariel can easily be made... there are six types of wings that you can apply to PC models such as the elf:

    1) Dragon (red)
    2) Demon (brown and pointier)
    3) Angel (white and bird-like)
    4) Bird (like the Angel wings but a mottled brown)
    5) Butterfly (and very green!)
    6) Bat (and flappy)

    So if you want harpy-like wings, I think the Dragon wings are actually pretty close. For an avariel, however, I would go with Angel or Bird.

    Post Comments (0)


    Dungeons and Dragons Online Interview at Warcry
    Posted Friday, October 17, 2003 - 18:30 CET by Yerril

    Turbine Entertainment, the guys responsonsible for the upcoming Dungeons and Dragons Online RPG, have been interviewed by Warcry. It's a good read, with some very interesting insights. Here's what they said:

    One of our main goals for the combat system in D&D Online is easily recognizable monsters and behaviors. A lot of us are tired of games that have Rat, Bigger Rat, Biggerer Rat, Biggerer White Rat! All the rats do pretty much the same thing, and the game, using text and number changes, passes that off as four different monster experiences. That model doesn’t fit with our combat goals at all. Each monster that you encounter in D&DO will have a distinct combination of appearance and behavior. We’re striving to not have any text identifier for the creatures – there will be no mistaking what a Beholder is and what it can do to you. And if we ever need a different type of Beholder for our quest or campaign purposes, we will be using a lot more than a name change and different numbers to let you know that you need to be prepared for something new.

    Sounds good to me! Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Last Week's Poll's Results
    Posted Thursday, October 16, 2003 - 11:03 CET by Sorcerer

    What we asked:

    Q: Do you tend to favour one gaming site's game reviews over all others?
    (204 votes total)

    Yes (82) 40%
    No (81) 40%
    I don't read online game reviews (41) 20%

    Interesting distribution of votes here... Practically the same number of people who voted said that they tend to favour one gaming site's game reviews over all others (40%), while the other 40% said that they do not.

    Finally, a clear 20% of poll participants voted that they don't read online game reviews at all.

  • Current Poll
  • Previous Polls

    Post Comments (0)


    SP Happenings #19
    Posted Thursday, October 16, 2003 - 10:53 CET by Sorcerer

    I'm two days late with the latest Happenings, and to tell the truth, I've completely forgotten that I needed to write it. With the start of the new uni year I've been thrown a bit off the course established over the last couple of months, so I need to adjust to a new routine. In any event, the past week has been largely uneventful in terms of SP stuff. I am now finally ready to begin the conversion of SP content to the new design (thanks to BlackthorneTA who keeps supplying me with converter scripts which will do the brunt of the work), so I will try to start with that if I have the time today.

    I'm still waiting for the SP merchandise to arrive, so no news on that front. Watch for more news next week.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Wednesday
    Posted Wednesday, October 15, 2003 - 20:12 CET by Sorcerer

    Another week's around and here are the latest NWN Wednesday goodies:

    NWCon: A Neverwinter Nights Online Gaming Convention
    BioWare and Neverwinter Connections are proud to announce the first online Neverwinter Nights convention, NWCon. This community organized 10 day event, running from Oct 25th to Nov 2nd, will feature some of the best Neverwinter Nights gaming action found in the community, as well as a number of expert panels to be held via IRC. Discuss.

    Azer
    There is no denying the fact that, however mighty you think you are, the diminutive Azer walk around with their heads on fire! The Azer is one of 16 new creatures in Hordes of the Underdark. Discuss.


    Harpy and 3 New Feats
    Shrieking horrors sporting razor sharp nails, and capable of dropping from the sky like a falcon to tear hapless adventurers to shreds, the Harpy has been released to fan sites (check below) this week! As an added bonus, RPG Vault has posted 3 new Feats. Discuss.

    Post Comments (0)


    Circle of Eight Release Temple of Elemental Evil Mod Pack 1.1.0
    Posted Wednesday, October 15, 2003 - 19:42 CET by Yerril

    The Circle of Eight have released the Temple of Elemental Evil mod pack, version 1.1.0., which adds several fixes and additions to the game.

    See the full list of corrections, and download it here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Wednesday, October 15, 2003 - 19:12 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Poisons: Poisons are defined in poisons.2da. Since poison is its own system in NWN, it does not use the spell save DC for the save. Unfortunate, but this won't change.

    Henchmen: You could try out the new multiple henchmen scripting commands, afaik there is no hardcoded limit to the number of henchmen you can have for community module builders. Our campaign will have a max of 2 henchmen at a time however.

    David Gaider, Designer

    Item Properties: Or you can use the new Arcane Spell Failure item property in HotU to make some chain armor with a lower ASF percentage.

    It's still better than trying to put an Automatic Still Metamagic feat on the armor. I never said it would be authentic-brand trademarked elven chain, sheesh. Sorry to jolt the purist in you, Torias.


    Custom Content: Well, I know there's stuff that the Live Team has on the drawing board to make using hak paks easier... but will that, in the end, actually alleviate the problem? Is it really that people don't know how to use hak paks? Or are they just hesitant to use something they consider "non-official"? Or are they just plain lazy?

    Myself, I'm not sure what to think. Sure there are a few things I'd like to see as a player that just aren't found anywhere in the realm of official or custom content... but for the most part, I can find in custom content most of the things I'd like to include. It strikes me as a bit odd that there are players out there who don't have the first clue about what custom content is or how to use it. Is it just that they don't know about Neverwinter Vault? Do we (Bioware) need more obvious links there? Is it just that people don't bother to look or dig around? Maybe we need to do up an "official" How-To guide that directs folks how to use Hak Paks? It might be, I guess, that unofficial instructions aren't somewhere obvious... perhaps if Bioware did up a really simple "this is how you do it" guide things would improve? Or is there only so much we can do? Are there some folks that simply require hand-holding and nothing short of a function that grabs the hak-paks and installs them in the right directory automatically without the player even needing to think about it the only way to bring custom content to the unwashed masses?


    Quote: I usually dont toy with Unofficial stuff myself i accept the game as it is. It's never gonna be perfect to everyone so why waste time trying to attain perfection when you could be losing the whole experience of a great game.

    That's very reasonable of you, for sure. There are many other people, however, who take a much more personal view of D&D and act like they've been mortally wounded because there isn't a maul to be found amongst the weapons or the fire giant's skin isn't black enough. If they can go to custom content and get themselves a maul and a charcoal-skinned fire giant, wouldn't that make them happier? I mean, sure, it seems sometimes like some of these folks are more concerned about how other people are playing the game, but let's just pretend for a second that being able to adjust their game according to their priorities would actually satisfy them. Wouldn't that be ideal? I can see how someone who is actively involved in making that custom content would be frustrated when they see someone whining about how they want that maul or charcoal fire giant when they know it is easily within their grasp and yet ignored. We at Bioware put that functionality in the game to be used... my question is, short of reworking how custom content works entirely is there no way to raise awareness and useability of custom content amongst the player base?

    You know, I have something to say about the custom content out there, too, come to think of it. When I was sorting through the hak paks on the Vault recently (looking for specific things but also keeping my eye open for good ideas to include), and after spending a couple of hours poring through it all I wished for nothing more than some kind of review system... not necessarily to point out quality, per se, but to ensure workability. You know what I mean... a "gold star" that says "Yes! This hak pak actually works as advertised and has instructions for use and is the most current version." And even just knowing if there are any issues up front would be golden... it seems like there is quite a bit of stuff up that is buggy or incomplete or "beta", yet not all of it is obvious. The hak paks that are professionally-done and deserving of confidence by the public sort of seem to get buried in the avalanche, leaving an impression that most CC is half-done. The Vault has a system for putting the best modules in a "Hall of Fame"... why not the most professional, up-to-date hak paks? I don't think we can do a list like this ourselves, unfortunately. At any rate... that's my input as a player/builder.

    Post Comments (0)


    Hordes of the Underdark Harpies Revealed
    Posted Wednesday, October 15, 2003 - 15:47 CET by Sorcerer

    BioWare has just revealed a new monster which will appear in the Hordes of the Underdark Neverwinter Nights expansion, the Harpy.

    Here are the monster's description & stats:

    Harpy

    Shrieking horrors sporting razor sharp nails, and capable dropping out of the sky like a falcon to tear hapless adventurers to shreds, the comparison to certain ex-girlfriends seems, sadly, unavoidable. Perhaps a lack of communication, far too little of the 'precautionary' medication, or even their sense of reality being more flexible than is healthy, has resulted in the Harpies' regrettable state of affairs. Pity them or not, they will still eat your momma.

    AC 11
    Hit Points 31

    Abilities

    Str 10
    Dex 15
    Con 10
    Int 7
    Wis 10
    Char 15
    CR 5
    Alignment Chaotic Evil
    Class 7 Monstrous
    Special Abilities Captivating Song

    Post Comments (0)


    Temple of Elemental Evil Still Selling Well
    Posted Tuesday, October 14, 2003 - 19:30 CET by Yerril

    In the top ten best-selling games for the week ending October 4th, The Temple of Elemental Evil remains at number 5.

    1 Halo: Combat Evolved - Microsoft $20
    2 Command & Conquer: Generals Zero Hour Expansion Pack - Electronic Arts $29
    3 Medal Of Honor: Allied Assault BreakThrough Expansion Pack - Electronic Arts $29
    4 Star Wars: Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy - LucasArts $47
    5 Temple Of Elemental Evil - Atari $43
    6 Sim City 4 Deluxe - Electronic Arts $37
    7 MS Flight Simulator 2004: Century Of Flight - Microsoft $52
    8 MS Age Of Mythology - Microsoft $36
    9 Homeworld 2 - Vivendi Universal Publishing $48
    10 The Sims Deluxe - Electronic Arts $35

    Thanks to RPG Codex for this information.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Monday, October 13, 2003 - 22:32 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Feats: I've seen creatures using Expertise, powerattack and disarm in combat. I've also seen weapon master NPCs using whirlwind attack and ki damage feats.

    Post Comments (0)


    Hordes Of The Underdark Preview at EDBIS
    Posted Monday, October 13, 2003 - 21:30 CET by Yerril

    There is a a preview of the second Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes Of The Underdark, at EDBIS RPG. Here's what they said:

    Gameplay mechanics are also being upgraded. More conversation options are being added for summoned creatures and familiars, and henchmen will correctly go into stealth mode with you and use spells more intelligently. There’s also a new familiar with many eyes, and some NPCs will be returning to aid your quest. The barbarian Daelan Red-Tiger, cleric Linu Laner’al, rogue Tomi Gallows, bard Sharwyn, and bard Deekin Scalesinger will all be returning from the previous campaigns, though they won’t necessarily all be available as henchmen throughout all of HotU. Two new weapon types, the dwarven war-axe and the whip, are also being included.

    Read the rest here. (nb. At the time of posting, the link experiences an error and will not load.)

    Post Comments (0)


    Shadows of Undrentide Review at Armchair Empire
    Posted Monday, October 13, 2003 - 21:13 CET by Yerril

    There is an extremely positive review of the latest Neverwinter Nights expansion, Shadows of Undrentide, at The Armchair Empire. It is given a final score of 8.5 out of 10. Here's what they said:

    If you liked the original, it’s hard to imagine why you wouldn’t like this expansion. It is the same mix of RPG action and puzzle-solving and even has a story that is more compelling than the original game. If, however, the original game fell flat with you, there is no reason to believe this expansion would change anything.

    Read the rest here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Site News - New Additions
    Posted Saturday, October 11, 2003 - 20:12 CET by Sorcerer

    Helping Support Sorcerer's Place

    It's been a while since my last call for help... A reminder how you can help Sorcerer's Place is in order, since the donations I rely on to keep this site running have been extremely slim as of late. I have made an exhaustive list of all the ways each and every one of you can help support Sorcerer's Place in one way or another. The link to this support page can be found below the PayPal button on the left side of every page of Sorcerer's Place. I hope you will take the time to read through it and see if you are willing to do something to help.

    My thanks go to all who have donated to SP in the past, or bought anything through the links on Sorcerer's Place. If it weren't for you folks to help me cover the monthly costs, SP probably wouldn't be around any more.

    Subsection Updates -> Fantasy Books

    Terry Pratchett Books subsection: The Science of Discworld II: The Globe paperback added.

    Miscellaneous Books subsection: Barry Trotter and the Unnecessary Sequel added.

    Subsection Updates -> Fantasy Worlds

    Fantasy Movies subsection: Fantasy Movies List updated.

    Subsection Updates -> Games

    Hordes of the Underdark and Neverwinter Nights Gold can now be pre-ordered from our Game Store.

    Subsection Updates - Games -> Baldur's Gate

    Editors, Hacks & Custom Characters subsection: The Vault Item Pack added.

    TeamBG subsection: 1 mod added and 1 mod updated.

    Subsection Updates - Games -> Planescape: Torment

    Tips, Tricks & Hints subsection: PS:T Store List added.

    Editors, Hacks & Custom Characters subsection: Restoration Pack added.

    Maps subsection: Player's Maze Map added.

    Subsection Updates - Games -> Baldur's Gate 2

    Tips, Tricks & Hints subsection: Best Mage & Priest Spells Reference added.

    Editors, Hacks & Custom Characters subsection: 2 mods added, 8 fan-made mods linked.

    Subsection Updates - Games -> Icewind Dale 2

    Tips, Tricks & Hints subsection: Jukka's Ultimate Powergaming Party FAQ added.

    Subsection Updates - Games -> Neverwinter Nights

    Walkthroughs & Guides subsection: 3 SoU FAQ/walkthroughs added/updated, NWN, SoU & HotU Reference Guide updated, NWN Expansion Details page updated.

    Tips, Tricks & Hints subsection: NWN Henchmen FAQ/Reference added, SoU Arcane Archer Character Guide added.

    Miscellanea subsection: 1 chat log added.

    Toolset & Related subsection:

    Subsection #3: NWN Lexicon Updated.

    Subsection #7: 3 various new additions.

    Subsection Updates - Games -> The Temple of Elemental Evil

    Walkthroughs & Guides subsection: Official Strategy Guide added, 1 ToEE Walkthrough added, ToEE Introduction updated.

    Tips, Tricks & Hints subsection: ToEE Tactical Master tips added.

    Editors, Hacks & Custom Characters subsection: Importing Custom Portraits tutorial added, Portrait Wizard added, 36 custom portraits added, Co8 Mods added, Hex Editing guide added.

    Maps subsection: Annotated Hommlet Map added, ToEE Bonus Map added.

    Miscellanea subsection: ToEE Trial download added, ToEE Walkthrough Video added, ToEE log of the latest chat added.

  • Direct Links

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Saturday, October 11, 2003 - 19:26 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Darcy Pajak, Assistant Producer

    Quote: 1. Will wizards get this feat for free at 1st level?

    2. Will using it cost xp in addition to gold?

    3. Will it be possible to scribe scrolls from all spells in the game? (Bard spells? Divine spells? PrC "spell" abilities? What about epic level spells?)


    1 - no. You have to pick it as a feat.

    2 - yes it cost xp in addtion to gold

    3 - Not epic level spells.


    Jay Watamaniuk, Community Manager

    HotU: I want to jump in here and remind folks that Hordes will be epic but some changes needed to be made in order to make it fly in a video game format...such as not having the the ability to fly. We are hard at work making sure that the material we have conforms to the epic rules detailed in the Epic Level Handbook but do caution folks with assuming that any and all material in that book will be in Hordes. I see, for exmaple, very characters walking on clouds no matter what they roll on their Balance checks, or swimming up a waterfall.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Wizard Spells: Wizards created with Hordes of the Underdark installed will get the Scribe Scroll Feat for free, as it is by the book. We added this only a few weeks ago. XP and Gold costs are by the book as well, we tested it and it works pretty fine.

    Ability Scores: To be blunt: No books that raise ability scores in hordes

    Quote: Yes but another question is are we going to get infinite epic forms?

    No, the epic forms are too powerful for infinite shifting.

    Post Comments (0)


    Temple Of Elemental Evil Selling Well
    Posted Friday, October 10, 2003 - 20:08 CET by Yerril

    The NPD Techworld best-selling charts feature The Temple Of Elemental Evil at number five. Here is the top ten list:

    1.) MoH: Allied Assault Breakthrough / EA / $22
    2.) C&C: Generals Zero Hour / EA / $26
    3.) Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy / LucasArts / $42
    4.) Homeworld 2 / VU Games / $41
    5.) Temple of Elemental Evil / Atari / $50
    6.) Flight Sim 2004: Century of Flight / Microsoft / $53
    7.) SimCity 4: Rush Hour / EA / $20
    8.) The Sims: Superstar / EA / $30
    9.) The Sims Deluxe / EA / $42
    10.) Command & Conquer: Generals / EA / $40

    Thanks to RPG Codex for this information.

    Post Comments (0)


    Temple of Elemental Review at Khabal Gaming
    Posted Friday, October 10, 2003 - 19:47 CET by Yerril

    Khabal Gaming have posted a review for The Temple of Elemental Evil. The overall impression seems to be positive, and the game was given a final score of 7.5 out of 10. Here's a clip:

    All in all, The Temple of Elemental Evil is certainly worth putting your money down at the local store for. Its no Baldur’s Gate or Neverwinter Nights, but it has its own unique style that is immensely enjoyable. It’s truly is a great way to find out why so many old-timer role-playing games fans still talk enthusiastically about Gygax’s module like it was written just yesterday.

    Read the rest of the article here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Friday, October 10, 2003 - 18:42 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Quote: I would like an option for my henchman to go stealthy when I do. OTOH sometimes I want him to draw fire while I sneak up. I would also like to tell my henchman/henchpixie/henchpig "stop standing on that loot I am trying to pick up. go away. I don't care, just go anywhere. go play with the drow for all I care, just Get Out Of The ****ing Way". Or words to that effect.

    1 - There is a radial option "Toggle stealth" in the henchman radial now.

    2 - Usually using the "follow" command in the radial menu will make henchman change their position, so you can pick up loot more easily.


    Effects: The player's handbook defines effects as either magical, supernatural or extraordinary. NWN is reflecting that. I wonder what exactly your problem is. There was a limit on the maximum bonus you could get from anything in NWN, this had nothing to do with the type of the bonus, it was an engine restriction which affected anything and had nothing to do with the barbarian class. Since the boni have been changed to allow higher values, the limit has been raised as well, the limit is very high now.

    In any case, a barbarian with the greater strength feats (which raises your natural strength) who enters rage will be insanely strong, but I don't think he will be able to reach the new cap, even if created by a really dedicated powergamer. We will not add the fatique after rage, because it was introduced the way it is in NWN and changing it at the moment is not an option. However, since the toolset and the rage script are open for modification, you can do these changes yourself or download a script package like HCR to customize your NWN experience the way you like it. The barbarian in Hordes is definitly a very strong and capable class, the available epic feats (which you don't know all yet) will make it even more interesting to play a barbarian. I don't think the barbarian is gimped disabled at all, it is definitly one of the most powerful classes out there.


    Hellball: Its larger than any other AoE spells area in the game. Also it has 4 different parts of elemental damage, so the chances that an opponent can resist them all are pretty slim.

    Druids: Druids are not necessarily a bad choise in HotU. First you get access to the shifter PRC which is pretty unique and makes a fairly nice addition to any druid. Monstrous regeneration will also be available to druids, someone pointed out the errata for the spell and we changed it to be available for druids at level 5 as well. We did some tweaks to the shapeshifting code, the druid will now retrain any magical boni on their armor when shifting shapes, so if you wear a leather armor +5 that grants fire resistance 5, you will get +5 to your AC when shifted and have fire resistant 5. All in all I don't think you can compare classes which each other anyway, each class has its unique focus or abilities and they are not neccessarily balanced, that's not the idea of D&D.

    Demilich: The demilich won't change, because we think its fine. If you don't like it you can change it for yourself very easily, after all that's what NWN is about.

    David Gaider, Designer

    Henchmen in HotU: Hmmm... let's see...

    okay, a partial list of henchmen in HotU:

    - Daelan Red Tiger: pure-class Barbarian
    - Linu Laner'al: pure-class Cleric
    - Tomi Undergallows: Rogue/Shadowdancer (may be switched to either)
    - Sharwyn: Bard/Fighter (may be switched to either)
    - Deekin Scalesinger: Bard/Dragon Disciple (may be switched to either)

    The above are all confirmed. Note, however, that this does not necessarily mean they are all available as henchmen right at the beginning of the campaign OR that they are available as henchmen throughout the entire campaign. Heh... chew on that for awhile.


    SoU Ending: Note that even with the fan module regarding the PC's escape from the Shadow plane, there is still an indefinite gap in time between the end of SoU and the beginning of HotU, which is discussed (though left purposefully vague) in the opening narration for HotU. The three modules do not connect in a moment-by-moment fashion.

    Quote: You were able to make such long games in the past so you guys are capable of it. I just hink that it would be keen for you guys to make an expansion just focusing on the campaign itself only just using the content already in the game.

    But the designers don't make the content, so it's not as if focusing on the campaign would free up any designer time. And taking a full-project amount of designers and putting them on an expansion... ehhh... that's not going to happen. As for us making such long games in the past, yes... that's true. We did. And we shouldn't have. BG2 and ToB spoiled players by their relative length. I think there is a distinct effort both in Bioware and in the industry at large to move towards shorter games that concentrate more on the details and replayability, instead.

    You know, the thing is that we don't get extra points for making a longer game, and nobody's paying more for it. We do, however, still get busted for all the same bad points... points we would have more time to work on if we spent less time expanding game length (you'd likely be shocked to learn how much work is required for just 1 hour of gameplay length). We'd like to work on the quality, ourselves, and not kill ourselves working massive overtime to provide just game length, so the result is pretty clear. This has nothing to do with consoles, the writing is simply on the wall.

    Though, yes... overall even I would prefer to play a really long game. If you're a hardcore fan, heck, who wouldn't want more for their money? Pretty simple concept, but completely beside the point. And just as a side comment on multiplayer... I actually don't think there is a trend towards multiplayer anymore. I think, in fact, that that trend is ending. It reached its height in the recent past with every magazine and reviewer trumpeting multiplayer... until finally everyone discovered that single player is preferred by a far, far greater percentage of the fan base. Surprise! Heck, even we were surprised by the fact that most of the community mods made by NWN are for single player, as well. And I think that realization is hitting the entire industry.


    Quote: Erm, if I strip Dorna down before the end Battle and shove all her stuff in a box (not countting the stuff she started out with...), will I be able to keep it and/or get it back after the drow steal it so I can equip Tomi with it?

    That's a mighty good question, isn't it?


    Quote: That reminds me of a question ive been meaning to ask, exactly what rogue skills are limited by heavier armor? more specifically, are pick lock or disarm trap limited?

    Pick Locks and Disarm Trap are, yes. I don't remember which other ones are, though.


    Quote: Also, will we be able to manipulate the inventories of the OC henchmen in HotU? I'm betting that this is a yes, but we can never know for sure unless you tell us.

    Yes, of course you can. That would silly of us not to put that feature in HotU again.


    Quote: Summation: How exactly will the game deal with the fact that every character that ended SoU had a different henchman, with a different multiclass method, with different items?

    I already mentioned this in another post. HotU does not start with you having just stepped out of the Shadow Plane en route from Undrentide. An unspecified amount of time has passed since then. Deekin, Dorna and Xanos have gone their own way and done some traveling of their own, and so have you, presumably. Enough time has passed, at least, for Deekin's book to have been published and for your character to have enjoyed a brief period of celebrity from it.

    As for how Deekin was multiclassed in SoU, well we don't take that into consideration at all. He's not a rogue at all in HotU, he's a bard/dragon disciple... his character is what's important about his continuuity, not his stats.
    His items he has simply sold or lost in the interim period, although he still has some. And while you could strip down Dorna to "give her items to your next henchmen", why bother? All those items are stolen from you at the beginning of Hotu. And Dorna and Xanos do not return, period.


    Quote: Thereby you would have your henchman, levels, items, and all.

    No, you wouldn't. As I just said above, there is a length of time that seperates SoU and HotU even with the possibility of the community-made bridging module. We are talking about a period of time like between BG and BG2, not the relatively short transition between BG2 and ToB.


    Quote: will Tomi make use of Hide in Plain Sight as a shadowdancer? so he's popping in and out during combat, wreaking havock and not getting hit much?

    Yes. I actually mentioned that in another thread today... with Hide in Plain Sight Tomi is a monster.


    Quote: Bard/fighter is probably a good idea for sharwyn... give her 4 levels of fighter before she hits level 20 and she'll get an extra attack per round. Deekin would probably be best staying pure bard from a "power" point of view... but dragon disciple is the perfect thing for him so I've got to go that path with him

    As I understand it, the mix works well for Deekin. He becomes pretty potent, though the more Bard you give up the less magically potent he is, I guess. I don't know how well Sharwyn works, but I've heard no complaints.


    Quote: I like the fact they all wont be sitting downstairs of the inn you start in, but I hope my favourite henchperson doesn't leave me during the adventure

    Who says they all aren't sitting downstairs? Doesn't mean that they are there to join you. As for the possibility of someone leaving you during the adventure... hmmm... not tellin'!


    Quote: Hey, Mr. Gaider, if by some odd chance of fate, my characxter meets up with Daelan or talks to him, while in possession of the last Uthgardt Amulet, will the two "remember" each other?

    No. Why would they? Hotu continues SoU's campaign, not the original NWN campaign. Your character has no business having that item.


    Quote: Also, will deekin still get to have that dragon tooth amulet?

    I was originally going to use that as the "catalyst" for Deekin becoming a dragon disciple, but my perception is that the vast majority of people never gave the Dragon's Tooth to Deekin so I decided against that idea. I might give it to Deekin as a magic item that he won't give up... but then it seems like something the PC might ask about (and there's no dialogue for it), so maybe not.


    Quote: Bard / fighter should be a good mix for sharwyn... though depending on the fighter package she uses, could end up with some less than useful feats

    I do believe Sharwyn is set up as an archer-type fighter... though what feats she'll take after the beginning of the game I really have no idea.


    Quote: So, now that Sharwyn has offically been noted as a NPC Henchie, can we get a snippit of her possible convs with Deekin?

    Maybe. There is a good one where Sharwyn critiques Deekin's book, but Brent would kill me if I spilled it.


    Quote: Oh and Dave, how do you keep sane having to write all these different options for conversation, not just between the PC and the Hencies bbut between all the different possible combos of henchmen?

    I like it, actually. I didn't get to write nearly enough inter-henchman banter, I never do... I just set a topic and start writing and the characters take care of things themselves. Do you know, for instance, that Linu and Tomi just are NOT meant to be in the same party together? Anyone who remembers what happened to Linu's chalice might realize why she might have a grudge against the little fella (besides the fact that he's a rotten, lying, thieving rogue).


    Quote: You could have him gain the first Dragon Disciple level off camera and if the PC questions him about his dragonish features, have him say that its a private affair. NPCs have separate lives from the PC, unless you have set up the story that it is somewhat part of a plot line.

    Deekin already gains his first DD level on-camera and the PC already gets to question him about it. And Deekin's explanation is perfectly reasonable. I might still give Deekin the Dragon Tooth, though, anyway. And I'll just put it in the description that if the PC asks about it, Deekin just sticks out his tongue and goes thpppppppffft.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Gold Edition Coming
    Posted Thursday, October 9, 2003 - 23:54 CET by Sorcerer

    Check out the latest press release we've received from Atari:

    ATARI UNVEILS THE NEVERWINTER NIGHTS GOLD EDITION

    The Original Neverwinter Nights; Neverwinter Nights: Shadows of Undrentide; Extra BioWare-Developed Modules Available in November

    LOS ANGELES ­ Oct. 9, 2003 ­ Neverwinter Nights™, developed by BioWare Corp. and published by Atari, under license from Hasbro, Inc., has captured the minds and hearts of PC gamers worldwide with one of the most captivating Dungeons & Dragons® role-playing experiences to ever grace a computer screen. Based in the Forgotten Realms®, created and published by Wizards of the Coast, the Neverwinter Nights™ Gold Edition game will give gamers a chance to rediscover the magic, extend the experience or even explore it anew this November.

    “At $40, the Neverwinter Nights Gold Edition game is an incredible value featuring one of best selling and most critically acclaimed role-playing games of all time in Neverwinter Nights; the best-selling first expansion pack, Neverwinter Nights: Shadows of Undrentide™; and, a number of stand-alone modules previously available only as downloadable content,” said Steve Allison, vice president of marketing, Atari’s Los Angeles studio. “The Neverwinter Nights Gold Edition game is the perfect introduction to the Neverwinter Nights universe whether you’re a first time player or a veteran of the role-playing genre ­gamers won’t want to miss this.”

    The Neverwinter Nights Gold Edition game will feature all of the most compelling aspects of Neverwinter Nights gaming including an extensive 80-hour official campaign, which is also playable in multiplayer mode; the amazing Neverwinter Nights Aurora Toolset which lets players create their own adventures, and the Dungeon Master™ client that allows players to step into the shoes of the Dungeon Master to tell their own stories; and, most importantly, access to an absolutely thriving player community brimming with content and support.

    “The Neverwinter community is one of the most compelling aspects of Neverwinter Nights. Fans who purchase the Gold Edition gain immediate access to almost 3,000 community made modules,” said Dr. Greg Zeschuk, Joint CEO, BioWare Corp. “We are constantly surprised with the quantity and quality of fan created content. This seemingly inexhaustible source of creativity provides Neverwinter fans with an unprecedented amount of replayability,” added Dr. Ray Muzyka, Joint CEO, BioWare Corp.

    The Neverwinter Nights Gold Edition game will also include the complete first official expansion pack Neverwinter Nights: Shadows of Undrentide. Additional features include, a new extensive single player campaign, new skills, including Tumble and Appraise; new feats, such as Divine Might, Great Cleave and Bullheaded; new weapons, such as Holy Water Flasks and Choking Powder; five new prestige classes, including the Blackguard, Shadowdancer, and Assassin; new monsters from the D&D™ universe, including the Pit Fiend, Cockatrice, Sphinx and Manticore; and more than 50 additional spells.

    In addition, the expansion pack equips module makers with additional content for the Neverwinter Nights Aurora Toolset, the groundbreaking software included with the full game that allows players to create their own universes, quests and storylines. The toolset will be augmented with all new tile sets for creation of new environments as well as new “Wizards,” or automated guides, to help gamers build and play adventures of their own creation.

    The Neverwinter Nights Gold Edition game will also give players a chance to experience some of the most popular and exciting modules created using the Neverwinter Nights Aurora Toolset. Modules are complete stand-alone adventures that allow players to take part in entirely new stories and adventures within their favorite Dungeons & Dragons worlds. Each of the four included modules has been created by the game’s original designers at BioWare. The modules include:

    • The Winds of Eremor ­ Find yourself stranded on the foreboding island of Eremor, shipwrecked days away from any known shoreline. What mysteries could this island hold?
    • To Heir is Human ­ Face the mighty drow in a quest to retrieve the only heir of a baron of Battledale.
    • The Dark Ranger's Treasure ­ This moody adventure takes you to Deadman’s Marsh, a treacherous place from which you may not return.
    • BioWare's Contest of Champions! ­ Pit your mightiest warrior, your deadliest assassin and your most feared spell-caster against the best the world has to offer in BioWare's Contest of Champions!

    Neverwinter Nights Gold Edition game will be available at retail stores nationwide this November for an estimated retail price of $39.95. Additional information about the Neverwinter Nights Gold Edition game can be found online at www.bioware.com.


    You'll be able to pre-order Neverwinter Nights Gold via SP as soon as the next site update goes up (planned for tomorrow).

    Post Comments (4)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Thursday, October 9, 2003 - 22:48 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Hellball Backlash: Its included but deactivated by default. You can enable it on a per module basis. Reason is the really huge area of effect of that spell, its easy to stay within the blast area by accident.

    Wait a minute ... why don't you people take time to actually read the responses you get. Hellball does damage to the caster when you are playing on hardcore + difficulty and are stupid enough to stay in the area of effect (as any similar AoE spell does). What I said is that the default 10d6 points of damage the caster would get any time he casts the spell have been disabled, unless you specifically enable this feature in your module. The reason why we disabled it is because it is already hard enough for the caster to stay out of a 20.0 sphere blast radius.


    Palemaster: Don't get your hopes to high on the spellcasting stuff, its hardcoded into the palemaster class. You will get more information on that class once our web profile is out.

    I'd suggest not to interprete at all at this point, because, like I said, I don't know what is happening exactly, I can only say that there is something happening with your spellcasting abilities if you are a pale master. I guess you need to be patient until the pale master profile is out


    AI: There have been some changes to the generic AI, mainly to the use of invisiblity and dispel magic and such. Also some variables have been added to allow a killed builder to tweak a creature's behavior (very comfortably using the new variables window in the toolset) and that can be used to tweak certain aspects of the generic AI for a creature, including
    - bumping up the chance for a creature to use spells,
    - make them go into stealth on spawn (works now),
    - tweak their "compassion" value so they help other creatures more often,
    - randomize spell use, etc.

    Also we added a variabl that allows to override the default combat ai script (DetermineCombatRound()) for specific creatures. This way you can write additions or replacements for the generic combat AI that only affect creatures you want. Don't expect miracles from those tweaks, but I found the changes were at least noticeable when playing through Hordes.


    Poison: You are talking about a Use Poison Feat? Well, Blackguards and Assassins created with XP2 installed will get this I think. The advantage of having this feat is that you can use poison you buy or find on weapons without a chance of wasting it.

    Changing Appearance: consider the rumours dispelled. You can change the appearance of a creature to any appearanctype defined in appearance.2da, but you can not touch individual body parts.

    Spell Death: Some spells (like Infestation of Maggots) and some special attacks (like the shadow's strength draining attack) kill you now once you hit 0 in an ability score and play on hardcore difficulty. The overall system still stays in place.

    Familiars: While familiars will not last long in battle, they certainly help. Especially the new multi eyed friend you can have in hordes. He can poke enemies from distance.

    Quote: Yes indeed, a really good choice... I love the little line of gems down the middle of his forehead! Will this bad boy come with the trademark store-soul-in-teeth/imprison ability? Will there be a new animation on PCs to allow them to run away like scared wee girls, arms-a-flailing?

    Its more like once you've had a meeting with his shiny teeth, you won't be able to run anymore... he has really immobilizing arguments. Seriously, this guy is a real badass. There is no monster you met in NWN so far that comes even close.


    Quote: Is Demilich a template, like Lich or Dracolich?

    No, "Paragon" is the only new template we added.


    Quote: The trap soul thing traps the soul in one of the demilichs gems, and turns the body into a small pile of dust... You get a fortitude save (DC 36), if you succeed, you gain 4 negative levels. It takes 24 hours for the soul to be completely absorbed, so after 24 hours the soul is gone forever. If the demilich is destroyed, and the gem crushed, before 24 hours, the soul and body can be restored by spells like resurrection. I guess much of this can't be done in NWN though.

    Right, we did not do it, but it was not necessary. The paralyzing touch of the demi lich is pretty much equivalent to death anyway.


    Quote: This is just lame. It should be an instant kill and destroyed corpse if the save fails. Also you made it a touch attack?!?! Sorry, but that is just lame. I would have at least made it a ranged touch attack.

    No we tried that and it was not fun at all. You can still add it yourself to your demi liches in the toolset..

    Naurendel pretty much summed it up. No, trap the soul would not work in NWN. Any self respecting demi lich would not use it on summoned creatures, he can just send them back or kill them. It all boils down to that it is a DC 35 instant death that most characters would not have a chance to avoid at all, and since we can not simulate the trapped soul in NWN anyway, it was removed. Still a level 40 character has only a very slim chance fighting a demilich alone, its tough enough. Plus you have the toolset to tweak that thing if you like. End of story


    Quote: Will this feat be applied retroactively to Assassins/Blackguards from XP1? Or is it something you receive at level 1 only (and thus your existing level x Assassin won't receive it?). I'm unsure as to exactly what you mean (hence the post..)

    I think you need to start a new assassin, not 100% about it through.

    I think so, yes. This is because those feats come from different expansion packs. One easy way to do that would be to set your XP to 0 by scripting and then using the dm_giveXP command to give you back your original XP, and level up your character again. But since this feat is given at level 1, I'm not even sure this would work.


    David Gaider, Designer

    Familiars Dialog: I know Dan is going to be re-writing the dialogue that is currently used when you talk to familiars, animal companions and summoned creatures. I know some things like asking them to go stealth or not to bash containers will be included, but I don't know if changes to tactics are being included (or if they're even possible).

    Quote: But they removed both of them, cause they "Confused the testers" (that's actually included in the comments of the scripts where whole sections are commented out (effectively removed)).

    Well, that's one small comment to cover a whole lot of reactions. Basically the problem was that we needed more feedback to let the player know what the henchman/companion was thinking (and didn't have time to provide the feedback necessary), otherwise the tester thought that what was happening was something else completely. The selective use of spells, for instance, was perceived as the henchmen "not using their spells" or, in some cases, it was assumed that the henchmen just didn't have any spells. Keep in mind that in SoU (especially right at the start) all you encountered were low-CR kobolds and therefore the henchman would often just whip out a bow or melee weapon rather than use a spell. Whether that is being worked on for HotU, however, I do not know.


    Quote: Perhaps David will enlighten us to any alteration or addition to what I have posted based on what I read sometime ago...if he, or someone else in the know, can give us that information.

    As far as I'm aware, you're still correct on all points. Technically the functionality exists to go beyond 2 henchmen... we just don't want to push the pathfinding and AI any further than we have to ourselves without a lot more time to develop & especially test it. But you all can play with it as much as you like. And, hey... once you get the talking sword it's pretty much like a party of 4 anyway.


    Quote: Perhaps they will open up pathfinding to the community in the expansion.

    No no no, I meant the AI, not the pathfinding. When it comes to pathfinding you are just as screwed as we are: use the multi-henchman at your own risk.


    Quote: Does anyone know if the original voice over cast will return to voice the characters from the OC?

    Nope. It's new people doing the VO's, but for the most part they sound pretty close. And holy CRAP... you want to see deadly? Now that Tomi is part Shadowdancer and does his Hide in Plain Sight thing during battle, does he ever kick BUTT! Sneak Attack Sneak Attack Sneak Attack... my eyes were bugging out.


    Quote: Question: How the hell does Tomi get into the underdark

    Who says he does?


    Quote: And can he be sacrificed to Lolth.

    I think the real question is: can you?


    Quote: Gawds, he was the most annoying aggravating NPC I have ever seen in your games.

    Yeah yeah yeah. The sword was annoying, Cespenar's annoying, Tomi's annoying, Deekin's annoying, Linu's annoying, Dorna's annoying, Xanos is annoying... as soon as a character opens its mouth, someone finds him annoying. I stopped listening to that a long time ago when I realized two things:

    1) You all are very easily annoyed.
    2) The only litmus test of a character's staying power is how much they are discussed, good or bad.

    So those of you who feel compelled to come here and register how much you loathe some character, be aware: you are doing your part to ensure that character sticks around. I love my job.

    Post Comments (0)


    The Temple of Elemental Evil Reviewed by ZDNet Australia
    Posted Thursday, October 9, 2003 - 21:13 CET by Yerril

    It appears that The Temple of Elemental Evil is already a firm favourite down under. A very positive review can be found at ZDNet Australia, giving the game a final score of 8 out of 10. Here's what they said:

    Events in TOEE revolve around the cosy town of Hommlet. 10 years prior to this adventure, a great war had been fought in the fields near the town between a terrible evil and the people of the land. The people triumphed and imprisoned the evil wizards within the Temple of Elemental Evil where it lay ruined and forgotten. However, the whisper of war still carries on the winds and rogue squads of bandits have been converging on the temple signalling the return of bloodshed. Enter our heroes, a whole lotta dice shaking and this ancient evil is about to find out where it's at. Well it may not be true D&D lingo, but it is the classic RPG story that sees our seemingly random group of odd-sorts conquer the axe-wielding, spell-toting forces of evil.

    Read the rest of the article here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Last Week's Poll's Results
    Posted Thursday, October 9, 2003 - 19:04 CET by Sorcerer

    What we asked:

    Q: Do you still play Baldur's Gate 2 and/or Throne of Bhaal any?
    (432 votes total)

    Yes, often (200) 46%
    Not much, but still (150) 35%
    No, not any more (82) 19%

    The endurance of BG2/ToB is quite extraordinary, judging by these poll results - 46% of those who voted still play BG2 and/or ToB often.

    35% of poll participants voted that they they don't play the games much any more, but still from time to time.

    Lastly, only 19% of people who voted don't play BG2/ToB any more.

  • Current Poll
  • Previous Polls

    Post Comments (4)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Wednesday, October 8, 2003 - 22:00 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Beholder Antimagic: - weapon properties don't change in our antimagic cone , but all buffs are dispelled.

    Shifter: All forms use polymorph, SetAppearace was ruled out because it was added too late for us to change the forms to it and because it is not behaving like an effect, and would require lots of coding to make it work like we would have liked it to work. You can use potions while polymorphed. Other items - No.

    Quote: More colors for weapons would certainly be nice, though, as there are only 3 in most cases.

    Now 4


    Quote: Will there be an item property for immunity anti magic

    No


    Quote: *All* ongoing effects, or only magical ones? Because something like a barbarian's rage shouldn't be affected by antimagic.

    We do not touch extraordinary effects like the barbarian's rage.


    Trent Oster, Producer

    Content: What content is in the game so far stays in. What content has yet to be put out has to pass through WotC and Hasbro approval. So, the models from the original game will stay.

    HotU Requirements: A GeForce II will still be quite playable, you might have to turn the detail down a bit and shy from the really high screen resolutions, but it should be OK. Myself, I'm all over the GeForce 4 and 1280x960 resolution.

    David Gaider, Designer

    Voice Over: Actually, there's quite a bit more recorded VO for HotU than there was for SoU. Deekin actually has the most at the moment: 162 recorded lines compared to 74 for SoU. I think there's like 3x the characters, too.

    Quote: It might not be an invalid way to go, but flooding a DnD game, computer or otherwise, really makes the game way to easy.

    That's one side of the coin, perhaps. Since you bring up ToEE, there are other things to consider, too... in that game, you're lucky if you're a longsword-user. Several options for magical longswords, but few of other types. It won't feel like a "flood" if you don't get anything your character can use, will it?


    Quote: No, I mean the feel of PnP DnD, the themes and the drama of a good PnP session/adventure that can draw a player into the game. Too many magic items simply waters everything down to a Super Mario/Diablo gameplay. That is not DnD.

    Sorry, but as far as I'm concerned the themes and drama of a good PnP session have nothing to do with how many magic items are given out. I've been in fun Monty Haul campaigns and I've been in fun low-treasure campaigns, both having plenty of story. Just because there's lots of rewards given out also doesn't equate gameplay very much to either Super Mario or Diablo. I know you pull out those two games, however, because those are games that elitist snobs like to whip out and sneer upon as equating somehow to soulless role-playing. I'll tell you what, though: when it comes to pure gameplaying and enjoyment factor, you could do a whole lot worse than Super Mario or Diablo.

    And if we give out too many rewards, I argue that that does not automatically mean poor storytelling or soulless roleplaying. We're far from perfect and we can certainly work on it, but you yourself stated that ToEE had both "shallow role-playing" as well as low levels of magic treasure given out. If those things are so readily connected, then how could that be the case? In the end, my objection is with how readily you whip out the word "flaw", when while we can always use work in our balancing it is a long way from being that.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Wednesday
    Posted Wednesday, October 8, 2003 - 19:30 CET by Sorcerer

    Another week's around and here are the latest NWN Wednesday goodies:

    Demilich
    No matter how huge your holy sword is, when you encounter a floating skull with gems for eyes, you know you're in for a challenging fight! The Demilich is one of 16 new creatures in Hordes of the Underdark. Discuss.

    Jade Empire Screams and Portraits
    Think you are furious enough? Choose Furious Ming or the Horse Demon as your BioWare Community account portrait. Then listen to what we put ourselves through in the making of the Premiere Trailer in this new Jade Empire Scream Sessions BioZone article. Discuss.

    New Hordes Spells and Feats!
    Blade Thirst and Bless Weapon are the spells released to fan sites this week (check below), and allow you to magically enhance weapons! RPG Vault will also be posting new feats today. Previous weekly releases can be found in the Hordes feats and spells sections. Discuss.

    Post Comments (0)


    BioWare Reveals 2 New HotU Spells
    Posted Tuesday, October 7, 2003 - 23:29 CET by Sorcerer

    Check out this week's cool Hordes of the Underdark spells BioWare has just revealed:

    Bless Weapon

    Caster Level(s): Paladin 1
    Innate Level: 1
    School: Transmutation
    Descriptor(s): Weapon Enchantment
    Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
    Range: Touch
    Area of Effect / Target: Creature's main or off-hand weapon
    Duration: 1 Minute / Level
    Additional Counter Spells:
    Save: None
    Spell Resistance: No

    You empower the touched weapon with a +1 enhancement bonus, and a 2d6 damage bonus vs. undead. If you or your target dual-wield and your main weapon either is magical or has some spell cast on it, this spell will target the off-hand weapon.

    Blade Thirst

    Caster Level(s): Ranger 3
    Innate Level: 3
    School: Transmutation
    Descriptor(s): Weapon Enchantment
    Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
    Range: Touch
    Area of Effect / Target: Creature's main or off-hand weapon
    Duration: 1 Round / Level
    Additional Counter Spells:
    Save: None
    Spell Resistance: No

    You grant a slashing weapon a +3 enhancement bonus. If you or your target dual-wield and your main weapon either is magical or has some spell cast on it, this spell will target the off-hand weapon. (Note: this spell only effects slashing melee weapons.)

    Post Comments (1)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Tuesday, October 7, 2003 - 21:23 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Derek French, Designer

    Build Notes Explained: Sarcasm in build notes is wasted on some people. For some people, there was a silly message coming from Windows (and let me be very clear that it is coming from the Windows OS, not nwmain.exe) that would tell you to insert your NWN CD into your hard drive. We found out what was causing this, and we added a check such that it wouldn't cause Windows to tell you to insert your NWN CD into your hard drive. That was where the humourous line of "Doing this might void your hard drive's warranty." comes in. The "this" reference, refers to you trying to insert your CD into your hard drive.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Throwing Weapons: No throwing weapons are a different category than bows or crossbows.

    Quote: If the Shifter becomes a Dragon, or another form, he will be vulnerable to weapons that slay creature type? Like: if I polymorph into a tyrafog zombie, weapons that are +3, +5 vs undead will afect me? If I turn into a Golem weapons that slay constructs can kill me?

    I think yes. If you go into undead form and someone turns you, you are affected.


    Quote: Has any thought been put into the programmers doing something to allow the community to "hack in" full henchmen control. Perhaps by hack pack or something else that would allow the player to fully possess the henchmen.

    This will never happen, its just not part of NWNs design vision. You will never have full control over henchmen in NWN, this game has always been about controlling exactly one character and it will always stay that way. Henchmen can be told to do a variety of different things in Hordes, including entering stealth mode with you, cast certain spells, buff the party or a single character, stop spellcasting, etc), but they will always stay computer controlled entities, that just the way it is in NWN.

    Post Comments (1)


    SP Happenings #18
    Posted Tuesday, October 7, 2003 - 20:13 CET by Sorcerer

    It's funny how when unpredictable things start happening, they keep on coming... I thought last week was going to be pretty uneventful, so I would be able to finish the promised site update early, but think again. In the middle of the week I read about the Circle of Eight site (leading ToEE modding community) having problems finding a host able to support their amount of traffic, so I offered them hosting on our own server, and they accepted. The next couple of days were spent setting them up on our server and tweaking the preferences of their message board for optimal performance, but now they're more or less settled in and running nicely. So, if you are playing The Temple of Elemental Evil, be sure to pay them a visit, because they've already produced a number of fixes and cool tweaks/hacks for the game.

    Anyway, after I was done setting up Co8 I got around to playing with the advertising script and adding Co8 to the system, making a "hosted by Sorcerer's Place button" and sending the new code to all our hosted sites to implement (temporarily dropping the pop-ups). Apart from all this fun stuff, I also had to do some preparations for my new uni year, which started this week, and hunt around for a new car door because I had a minor accident in which the passenger door got thoroughly smashed... The repairs should be done by Friday (here's hoping), and if anyone wants to donate to help me pay off the bill, you're very welcome.

    Even though I've been pretty busy, as you can see, I still managed to start working on the site update yesterday, so I expect it to go up in the next few days.

    Oh, by the way, here's my current pet peeve: after I installed Windows XP I couldn't get my UMAX Astra 3400 scanner to work no matter what, so I checked out UMAX's official site, and since I didn't find anything useful there, shot a mail to their support. I received a prompt reply that indeed, with my version of the bundled drivers & software, the scanner would not run on XP. My only option of getting it to run is to pay UMAX $15 for a new CD with the drivers & software. And this is for a scanner I bought like 2 years ago. I couldn't believe my eyes at first, but once I managed to suppress my anger, I wrote a calm reply back that since UMAX is obviously not interested in properly supporting the products they sell, I will rather get another scanner than pay them for this type of extortion. It's not that there's a great deal of money at stake, but it's the principle of the thing. Imagine NVIDIA or ATI decide not to provide Windows XP drivers for any but their latest graphic cards, and charge everyone else for drivers. No serious company should be able to afford to pull a stunt like this, so consider this a warning if you ever intend to buy an UMAX scanner.

    Post Comments (2)


    Hordes Of The Underdark Preview at PC.IGN
    Posted Tuesday, October 7, 2003 - 19:44 CET by Yerril

    PC.IGN have posted a very interesting preview of the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion - Hordes Of The Underdark. Here's a clip:

    You can see all the action from a new over-the-shoulder camera now as well. Where before you were limited to a more birds-eye view of the game, you can now drop the camera down right on top of the characters' heads to really immerse yourself in the setting. The lack of a ceiling can seem a bit strange but the added excitement from being right down at the level of the action will mean you'll hardly notice the missing architecture that the new point of view reveals.

    Read the rest of the article here.

    Post Comments (0)


    D&D: The Temple of Elemental Evil Review at Netjak
    Posted Monday, October 6, 2003 - 20:14 CET by Yerril

    A very negative review of The Temple of Elemental Evil can be found at Netjak. The reviewer complained about many aspects of the game, but the graphics and music were eventually enough to give it a final score of 6.3. Here's a clip:

    In addition to obvious bugs, there is a whole category of problems caused by one of the most controversial publishing decisions I’ve heard of. Shortly before the game’s release, Hasbro, the owner of the Wizards of the Coast who holds the Advanced Dungeons and Dragons license demanded that the game’s rating is changed from Mature to Teen. The developers were thus forced to remove all children, foul language and several objectionable objects, such as a brothel. However, they didn’t have the time to remove conversation paths and quests linked to the removed features. This caused several quests to be broken, and a lot of conversations that make no sense are still in the game.

    You can read the rest of the article here.

    Post Comments (1)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Monday, October 6, 2003 - 20:03 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    David Gaider, Designer

    Shifter: If you shift into a form that has a melee weapon, you want to have a melee weapon equipped, otherwise the weapon will not be merged. If you shift into a form that comes equipped with a ranged weapon, you want to have a ranged weapon equipped, or the weapopon will not be merged. If you have now weapon equipped, the new form will also have no weapon equipped - This is to support players who decide they want to specialize in unarmed combat.

    Gloves transfer as items onto the creature hide, not onto the weapon. Any property that is not valid on a creature hide will be lost.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Sunday, October 5, 2003 - 18:38 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Tilesets: There are no plans to modify existing tilesets with Hordes of the Underdark. Adding new tiles to existing tilesets would require us to make this content available to all NWN versions in a patch, not just the people who bought Hordes and things that affect all versions of NWN are part of the Live Teams job. Yes, it was done in SoU and it caused some ugly problems... I won't rule out future tileset modifications, but these would have to be done by the Live Team.

    Pale Master: I would suggest playing a pale master for that purpose, you'll get to see lots of different undead followers as you get more and more powerful. I'm sure the web team will have a nice feature page about that prestige class sooner or later.

    Quote: Will the Pale Master get a choice as to what kind of undead minion to have, or will it just depend on level?

    By the rulebook its changing through levels.


    David Gaider, Designer

    Editing Character Bio: No, an on/off toggle is not an option, as I have said previously elsewhere. Features are not so easy to isolate and toggle like that and changes to the GUI (or new GUIs) are expensive, zot-wise. This applies as well to specifying just the Biography editing. The feature as it was prior to limbo was easy because we just enabled a player to go back to the character detailing that is already done at character creation... same GUI, same everything. If you'll recall, the Biography is on the same GUI page as the Name, Deity, Age and Voiceset. Doing up a new GUI that takes out the other parts besides Biography may not be possible. Beyond that, however, I don't know what the status is on this feature. Limbo means that most likely unless someone gets some time to address this properly and the fix won't take time out of the schedule the feature will likely be cut. But we'll see.

    Quote: So, given BioWare's attitude towards quality and perfection, (You guys just don't do something unless it can be done well. At least that's why you say we still don't have cloaks ^-^)

    No, we don't do cloaks because we don't have time to do them well and we really don't see the point in doing crappy ones on purpose. It's one thing to try to achieve something quality and have it not turn out than to know you're not going to achieve that quality in the first place. Does a policy of not setting out to make crap make sense to you or would you prefer to make another sarcastic comment?


    Quote: Are the holes on the bottoms of old tilesets getting filled in for HotU since the camera comes unlocked by default now? You'd hate to have those ugly old missing polys now, wouldn't you?

    No, the old tilesets are not being changed. Yes, I imagine it is a bit annoying for the artists though I understand it is not very noticeable... and for those who like to customize the camera angle to that point it's probably worth it.


    Quote: Also, I'm still curious about wands in HotU. Since magic items all need to be equipped to be used, does this mean that wands will finally be equippable? (Since they already have the models.) I've never liked wands being used while nestled safely deep in a rucksack.

    I don't think so. There was actually a reason for disabling the equipping of wands, but I'll be damned if I can remember what it is at the moment. I'll check on this just in case it's changed for HotU, however (on Monday).


    Quote: 1. World map and area map views(more than 1 section at a time).

    No. There's nothing in the engine to support this.


    Quote: 2. Non-scripted wilderness adventuring with varied wandering monsters and random encounters (non-plot friendlys and hostiles).

    I'm assuming you mean BG2-like encounters where you meet stuff while traveling. Well, without a world map you're not going to have these, are you? As it is, using the built-in Encounter system is pretty non-scripted.


    Quote: 3. Mounted adventuring such as: horses, camels, dragons, wyvern, pegasai, etc.

    No, there's nothing like this in NWN, nor can there be without a proper Z-axis.


    Quote: 4. Choices for societal rank land and property ownership.

    Err... with the right module and scripting, sure, but it certainly isn't an inherent feature in the game.

    Post Comments (0)


    D&D: The Temple of Elemental Evil Review at GameBanshee
    Posted Saturday, October 4, 2003 - 16:32 CET by Veldrin

    GameBanshee has posted a review for The Temple of Elemental Evil. They gave a final score of 6.0 out of 10. Here's a clip:

    TOEE belongs to that family of RPGs that lets you create an entire party, rather than focusing on one character and acquiring others as you travel. The creation screens let you design and maintain a raft of individual characters, rather than a single party with fixed members. You can use the point buy system for ability stats (the usual Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom and Charisma), or roll up a character. The latter offers an excellent chance of getting more stat points and higher scores, which you can distribute at will among your different abilities. Eleven classes (including monks) are available, and seven races (including half-orcs): no surprises, there. Feats, skills, spells, portraits: again, these are all basically familiar, if you’ve played recent RPGs such as Icewind Dale 2. If you haven’t, however, you’ll want to consider carefully what feats you give your party members, since they can only reach 10th level in TOEE. It’s an understandable limitation in the game, designed to properly scale combat and keep godlike parties from developing, but it does put those few feats some of your characters get at premium value.

    Read it all here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Saturday, October 4, 2003 - 16:03 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Lead Designer

    Toolset: See, the Toolset you have is the same Toolset we are using to create our game and the expansions, and there have been several occasions where features that would have been very cool for us to have could not be included because they would make the toolset more powerful, more dangerous to use for the end user, and more complicated (because those features would allow you to break something if used in the wrong way - and creating the appropriate checks to prevent the end user from using a certain feature in the wrong way would cost time and manpower we could not spare). This kind of trade-off hurts us, because those "complex" features help to create cool single player experience. In a way I (as former member of the community not involved in the creation of the NWN OC) blame this for the not too exciting parts of the Official NWN campaign.

    You need to understand that the Toolset feature in NWN was only possible because the Toolset was also be used internally, thus time put into the Toolset was not "wasted". Compared to the overall sales number of NWN copies, the number of people that would use a toolset, regardless how easy it is to use, would be too small to justify putting the man-years into the toolset development that are required to make it as accessible as it is right now. NWScript shares lots of things with C, and there is a reason for it - its a "programming/scripting" language. There is not much you can make to make it more accessible. Even if it had a syntax like Visual Basic, people who got problems with C would not understand it any better - because its a programming language. In a way, setting up plots and quests IS like programming. Developing them in your mind is one thing - putting them into a computer game another. Its *much* like programming because these things share common structures.

    There can be things like the Plot Wizard and Lilac's scripting tools that make scripting easier and more accessible, but they are never as flexible as You can be and want to be if you *understand* how to use NWScript as opposed to just using. There is one point I am agreeing with you: Basic tasks are too hard to do for the non programmer in NWN. But I don't think that's because you have to script them - its because there is no really good sorted scripting repository on the web, and in the Toolset. There are so many scripts/ideas that have already been coded and that could, if they would be easy to find, help a lot of people with their mods. I know NWVault has a large library of scripts, as have many other sites and the NWN Data files - but they are a pain to navigate and even if you find the scripts, they are often documented in a way that you need scripting knowledge to use them.


    Children: See, that children thing is not a big deal when it comes to Hordes - after all there are not many children running around in the Underdark, right. I don't think we ever had children in this Campaign, so the question whether to remove them or not is not interesting.

    Dragon Shape: I don't see a problem with Wis 30 (or whatever the feat requires). Its a very high level feat and very very powerful. Plus you can always buy the Great Wisdom Feat multiple times to get it earlier.

    Dragon Form: Dragon Form is a high end ability, the form is very powerful. We could give you a dragon form early on without having it cost feats, but it would be something far weaker and less useful - its a tradeoff. Also I think you can get Dragon Form a bit earlier than 30 because of the Great Ability Feats...

    Epic Feats: Items do not raise your prerequistes when it comes to calculate if you are allowed to take a feat when you level up. The Great (Ability) Feats do raise your natural ability scores and allow you to qualify for prerequisites, but you can not put them on items.

    plus, if you somehow get feats you can not get by the rules, your character would be rendered invalid through ELC.

    No scrolls could not grant feats.

    No there are other feats you can pick meanwhile. Dragon Shape is high end and it is powerful enough to justify it. If you really want it as early as possible, you have to pay feats, buts that is ok. It all boils down to choise and its part of D&D that you have to make choises about your character's career ... you just can't have it all. If you multiclass you sacrifice raw power for flexibility - getting later access to certain powers is part of the price to pay for that flexibility.

    If Dragon Form would be more accessible - it would be weaker - you can't get it earlier and have the same power as it has now. Plus, if we would make Dragon From more accessible, we would have to move another feat (i.e. Undead Form) higher up the line - what would be the difference? Dragons are the "signature" monsters of D&D and being able to transform yourself into a Great Old Wyrm seems a good conclusion to your shapeshifting abilities in higher levels.

    Post Comments (0)


    The Temple of Elemental Evil Official Patch Announced
    Posted Saturday, October 4, 2003 - 0:47 CET by Sorcerer

    We have just received word from Atari officially confirming they are working on a ToEE patch:

    ATARI PLANS PATCH FOR THE TEMPLE OF ELEMENTAL EVIL

    Significant Feedback from Player Community Used to Fine-Tune and Update Latest Dungeons & Dragons Role-Playing Game

    LOS ANGELES - Oct. 3, 2003 - Atari today announced plans to develop a patch for its recently released PC CD-ROM game, The Temple of Elemental EvilT, set in the Dungeons & Dragons® World of Greyhawk created by Wizards of the Coast. The patch, which is initially slated to release later this month, will address a number of issues associated with the retail release of the product, including: technical fixes and general fine tuning; a variety of quest clarifications; corrections for some race and class inconsistencies, such as miscalculated attack modifiers and incorrect weapon and spell use; as well as a number of interface updates.

    Developed by Troika Games, The Temple of Elemental Evil features an exciting party-based, single-player campaign, an engaging storyline based on the classic D&D® adventure of the same name, as well as a faithful translation of the latest version 3.5 rules. The Temple of Elemental Evil is now available at retail stores nationwide with an estimated retail price of $49.95 and an ESRB rating of "T" for Teen. Additional information about The Temple of Elemental Evil can be found online at www.greyhawkgame.com, which features message boards, wallpapers, screenshots, game play information and much more.

    Post Comments (0)


    SoU Review at Ferrago
    Posted Friday, October 3, 2003 - 19:56 CET by Yerril

    A new review for the latest Neverwinter Nights expansion, Shadows of Undrentide, can be found at Ferrago, featuring over 40 screenshots. It gets a fairly positvive overall score of 75%. Here's what they said:

    Metaphorically, it was like following up a Whopper with a normal Cheeseburger. You may get the addition of mustard but the product as whole is much less filling and leaves you wanting for more. It's up to Bioware to bring the official continuation of NWN back up to the stellar heights that they themselves first propelled it into. Still, despite my misgivings I do recommend it to NWN fans, if just for the extra toys that it brings to the NWN world.

    Read the whole article here.

    Post Comments (0)


    A Wave From Your News Poster
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 21:51 CET by Yerril

    Greetings, folks.

    Many of you will know me through the Boards O' Magick (which I heartily recommend to everyone), or at least know OF me, but I'm here to introduce myself as your latest News Poster! I've been lurking around SP for nearly three years now, but I haven't really given anything back. So now I'm doing my duty and helping Tal out. Besides, I'll be filling out my University Application in about a year, and I figure this'll look pretty good on there. ;) Plus, I want my own "About Me" page, and maybe even an avatar change... (hint, hint) :D

    So, until next time, drink, be merry, and listen to R.E.M.

    Post Comments (4)


    Circle of Eight Release Unofficial ToEE patch
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 21:44 CET by Yerril

    The Circle of Eight Group have created an unofficial patch for The Temple of Elemental Evil, which fixes a large number of bugs found in the game, and has received a great deal of positive feedback.

    For a detailed list of fixes, and to download the patch, go here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Planescape: Torment Voted 9th Most Underrated Game Ever
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 21:37 CET by Yerril

    In Gamespy's Top 25 most underrated games, Planescape: Torment has landed at the number 9 spot. Here's what they had to say:

    In addition to the story and setting, the game also sports mind-blowing spell effects, an innovative level progression scheme, incredibly well-written dialogue, and some of weirdest party members ever seen, including a succubus who has given up sex, an animated suit of armor, a cube, and a man on fire. Somehow it all managed to work, giving those players who purchased it an RPG experience they would never forget.

    Amen to that, I say. Read the whole article here.

    Incidentally, the top five aren't released until tomorrow, so keep your eyes open!

    Post Comments (0)


    EDBIS RPG Post Yet Another ToEE Review
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 21:04 CET by Yerril

    EDBIS RPG have posted the latest in the recent flood of Temple Of Elemental Evil reviews. Overall, they rate it 76%.

    Overall The Temple of Elemental Evil is a refreshing entry to the genre and once the bug problems are squashed it will make a fine addition to any role player's library. It's a fun turn base crpg that has the best representation of the Dungeons and Dragons rules. If you can over look the drawbacks of the game then you won't be disappointed.

    Read the whole article here.

    Post Comments (0)


    GCM Interview Tim Cain About ToEE
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 20:58 CET by Yerril

    Game Chronicles Magazine have interviewed Tim Cain, project leader on The Temple of Elemental Evil. It gives a good general overview of the game, and features some particularly interesting screenshots. Here's a short extract:

    Tim Cain: I think ToEE has the best implementation of D&D combat ever made on a computer. Our turn-based combat is really fun to play, and there are loads of tactical options to consider. I also think our implementation of feats, skills and spells is quite large, and we have a darned good online help system. In fact, our game is a good basic engine upon which to build a lot of great D&D adventures.

    Read the whole interview here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Two New HotU Feats at RPG Vault
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 20:53 CET by Yerril

    RPG Vault is currently featuring an article concerning two new feats to be used in the upcoming Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of The Underdark. Here's a short extract:

    Improved Spell Resistance
    Type of Feat: Defense
    Prerequisite: 21st level
    Specifics: The character gains a +2 to spell resistance. This feat may be taken multiple times, to a maximum of +20.
    Use: Automatic.


    Read the whole article here.

    Post Comments (0)


    D&D: The Temple of Elemental Evil Review at RPG.net
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 20:47 CET by Yerril

    Yet another Temple Of Elemental Evil review can be found at RPG.net. Although the reviewer claims to have had a few problems with the game, he did speak very highly of the art and sheer fun of combat. Here's a short extract:

    I spent a lot of time discussing the negative issues of this game. I have nursed these flaws like a child toys with a loose tooth. Your impression may be that this game is not worth your time. To the contrary, if you enjoy computer roleplaying games, or if you enjoy D&D and have a decent PC, then you would be a fool to pass on this game. The tactical gameplay alone makes it worth getting.

    The rest of the article can be found here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 20:45 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Hail Of Arrows: The Hail of Arrows and Seeker Arrow spells have been changed lately to include proper bow and critical damage, strength modifier, proper treatment of weapon specialization and correct damage penetration for the piercing part of the arrow, making the ability quite a bit more useful. These fixes will be in an upcoming patch.

    HotU: HotU comes with over 100 new scripting commands, 4 new tilesets, new heads, new events like OnEquip, OnUnEqup, OnHitCastSpell, Dynamic Item properties, 16 new monsters, new feats, spells, epic level support until level 40, a big bucket full of new, high quality placeables and more. Most Builders will be more than satisfied with that.

    Trapkits: As a side note, all Trapkits in Hordes will be marked as "stolen" by default, making it harder and less profitable to sell them.

    Shifters: Yes. the shifter forms can change Con, Str and Dex, but most forms only change one or two of these stats, the other ones stay like they are in non-shapeshifted form.

    Arcane Archers: The arcane archer's enchanted arrows have been fixed to cut through the appropriate damage resistance. The fixes will be rolled out in an upcoming patch. DR 20/+5 means you need a weapon of +5 or higher enchantment to hit a creature or you will have 20 points of damage subtracted from each blow.

    David Gaider, Designer

    Open Game Design: Part of the problem, of course, is that we do not really get access to a broad slice of our fanbase when getting this feedback... the portion of the users represented on this board are comprised mostly of the hardcore RPG player. Accepting that and knowing that for what it is, some types of community input on design could be quite helpful. I think, however, that it remains mostly useful as a litmus test for some of our decisions and for those things Bioware feels it needs specific help with. At best, perhaps we should be more willing to "dip into the pool" (so to speak) when such situations arise, but I'm sure anyone who is a regular on these boards could understand our hesitation.

    After all, we have to approach many of these decisions from a viewpoint that the majority of the community simply can't understand. I say can't because the limitation for most isn't one of intelligence or willingness... it is simply impossible for many to comprehend the factors that need to go into these decisions. Even if we had dedicated folks trying to educate the community, it still wouldn't work: players view design decisions purely as players, and while that's invaluable input to have access to you certainly wouldn't want to base larger decisions solely on that.

    And if we did open up larger decisions to the community? Besides the likelihood for such to descend into arguments (when did the community ever agree with itself?), in the end we'd still have to make our own judgement call... and thereby risk the anger of community members who suddenly felt they had some ownership of the process. Sure, the chances of finding a gold nugget idea in all of that seems appealing... but what are the chances that it would get lost in the general cacophony? Pretty good. I appreciate the idea, and think that in some isolated circumstances it might be an alright one, but overall it's a bit too optimistic considering what's involved.

    Post Comments (0)


    D&D: The Temple of Elemental Evil Review at RPG Codex
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 20:34 CET by Yerril

    The folks at RPG codex have a new review of The Temple Of Elemental Evil up, and the verdict seems to be, overall, very positive. Here's what they said:

    Temple of Elemental Evil is a game that has its flaws but that also has got some very strong qualities. Although the role-playing aspect isn't nearly as strong as such RPG juggernauts as Fallout or Arcanum and wary gamers may want to wait for a patch before leaping into ToEE, the combat is simply second to none and the game is a big bucket of fun. If you like big, tactical fights with some robust if somewhat limited role-playing and some great graphics and sound, ToEE is the game for you.

    Read the rest of the article here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Wednesday
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 19:49 CET by Sorcerer

    Another week's around and here are the latest NWN Wednesday goodies:

    Demonflesh Golem, Spells and Feats!
    A nightmarish collection of body parts, the Demonflesh Golem is one of 16 new creatures in Hordes of the Underdark (it will also be released to all NWN owners in an upcoming update). Additionally, 2 new Hordes feats, Curse Song and Improved Spell Resistance, have been posted up at RPG Vault, and 2 new Hordes spells, Infestation of Maggots and Monstrous Regeneration, are available from fan sites. Discuss.

    Jade Empire Trailer and FAQ
    Don't miss this exciting new trailer for Jade Empire, BioWare's newly announced upcoming game. Check out the beautiful vistas, enticing action, and the ultimate in evil known as Death's Hand! Then get more info from the new FAQ! Discuss.

    Hordes Fan Site Kit
    The Fan Site Kit for Hordes of the Underdark is now available for download, and contains goodies you can add to your site such as screenshots, creature images, fact sheet, logos, and game art! If you have a fan site, and want to participate in our NWN Fan Site Guild to gain access to exclusive fan site content, please submit your site into our links section. Discuss.

    Post Comments (0)


    Last Week's Poll's Results
    Posted Thursday, October 2, 2003 - 12:24 CET by Sorcerer

    What we asked:

    Q: Do you think Black Isle should make another Icewind Dale game (IWD3), or focus on a new, different D&D game?
    (474 votes total)

    It's time for a new, different D&D game (306) 65%
    Give me Icewind Dale 3! (168) 35%

    Quite obviously, the vast majority of poll participants (65%) believe that it is time BIS made another D&D game which is NOT set in Icewind Dale. Though whether all these people are allergic to snow or just to hack & slash is another question...

    35% of those who voted, however, are in favour of Icewind Dale 3 being made and are eagerly anticipating it.

  • Current Poll
  • Previous Polls

    Post Comments (2)


    Shadows of Undrentide Review at AllOutGames
    Posted Wednesday, October 1, 2003 - 22:55 CET by Veldrin

    AllOutGames has posted a review of Neverwinter Nights' first expansion pack, Shadows of Undrentide. They gave it a final score of 85%. Here's a clip:

    Shadows of Undrentide wasn't designed for a gamer wanting to continue his adventures from the original module, which isn't typical for an expansion. It was designed for us to create a new character as the level cap is still set at twenty.

    This is disappointing, as one wants to continue the life of his original character and find out how the people he encountered, fared. It also makes you feel like the original character created has gone to waste. Well, please don't make the mistake of deleting your original character. You should save him for the next upcoming Bioware expansion.


    Read it all here.

    Post Comments (0)


    Neverwinter Nights Forum News
    Posted Wednesday, October 1, 2003 - 22:50 CET by Veldrin

    Here are today's Neverwinter Nights forum highlights. Please take into account that these are only single parts of various threads and should not be taken out of context. Bear in mind also that the posts presented here are copied as-is, and that any bad spelling and grammar does not get corrected on our end.

    Georg Zoeller, Designer

    Quickbar: No new quickbars for HotU.

    Rogues & Reading Scrolls: Won't be changed. In any case rogues need to have a decent amount of skill points in Use Magic Device now (25+) if they want to have any chance to cast scrolls on hardcore+ difficulty, as they need to win a skill check against DC 25 + Spell Level to read a scroll now. (And there is no Take20 for that).

    Spell Cap: There are spells that do not cap out however (flame arrow being one of them) ...

    Shifter: Ok, some good news for you shifter freaks. I've taken a look at mr_bumpkins idea and found that the original problems I had when trying out that other approach a while back are no longer existing. Thus, for certain shapes (basically shapes that wear a weapon or armor - like all the humanoid shapes, the minotaur or the drider shape), the shifter's equipment will merge with his new form. Creature forms like the Manticore or the wyrmling forms are not affected by this change. This means that if you wear wielding a flaming scimitar +3, boots of speed and an amulet of protection +3 equipped before, the minotaur's greataxe will have a +3 enchantment, fire damage and his hide will have an additional +3 bonus to AC and grant the benefit of the boots of speed. This whole thing should make shifting into these forms much more viable, especially in higher levels. Note that this is still a bit experimental and we may encounter problems that would force us to drop this addition, but it looks pretty cool at them moment ... Fear the mighty Kobold Commandos!

    Some of the undead shapes also gain benefits from these changes, as for the rest, this is still subject to balancing. A few might forms my inherit properties from the shifter's armor and items but not weapons, others will be pretty strong on their own (dragons) or because of their special abilities. Another nice benefit from that new system is that the new item property spells are now pretty useful for the shifter. Casting Flame Weapon before changing to one of the forms affected by the change will add those properties to the weapon equipped when shapeshifted as well.

    According to the rules, if you have a creature hide with damage reduction on it equipped, your creature weapons should be able to penetrate this damage reduction and lower. So if you were a mighty dragon with DR 20/+5, you would be able to penetrate +5 damage reduction with your claws. Not sure about it, could be 20/+5 or even 30/-. Its a very high level ability to shift into those wyrms.

    * Most Monk feats do transfer.

    * If the creature is fighting with bare hands (i.e. no melee weapons, creature weapons), you have the advantage of a monks unarmed combat feats (iirc).

    * If you shift into one of the aforementioned forms (minotaurs, drider, humanoid forms, a few others) and do not have any weapon equipped, your new form does not have a weapon as well, so monks are free to fight as unarmed minotaurs, kobolds, etc.

    * Boni of weapons of different type (ranged/melee) will not transfer, so you should equip a nice ranged weapon when shapeshifting in a form that has a ranged weapon equipped.

    * Greater magic fang does not work on a shifter, but casting greater magic weapon will help


    Quote: So..does that mean anyone with Dragon Disciple levels will look exactly the same?

    No, the wings change is hardcoded and is performed by the game engine on levelup. There is no access to it through the scripting language.


    Quote: I've got a question for you Georg, though it may have already been answered...Is there any way that you could set a PC to have certain graphical enhancements like the wings or skeletal arms through scripting rather than levels in a certain class without a hakpak? How about with a hakpak? What exactly would be required to do so?

    No access to creature appearances apart from SetCreatureAppearanceType (which does not allow access to single creature parts)


    Quote: Yeah, I know, what my general drift was is that you could make cloaks appear when you put one in your cloak slot without having to make two copies of every armor. In respone to Mr. Gaiders, I may have worded it wrong, but I believe someone in BW (Georg maybe) said that item part appearances were dynamic, so you could change armor pieces dynamically, thus, you could change the neck slot of the armor (not the PC part, so it wouldn't work if you were naked) to another slot with a cloak upon equipping a cloak via script.

    The command used for this is called CopyAndModifyItem and it can be used to create a copy of an item with one part changed. With a bit of scripting, this does indeed allow you to do what you propose, yes.


    David Gaider, Designer

    Half-Elves: No, no unique half-elf models.

    You mean uniquely half-elf heads? Nope, you're still "stuck" with the same old heads.


    3 Class Limit: The three-class limit is a hindrance to roleplaying? Sorry, I don't buy it. I've yet to see anyone "roleplay" their way into four or more seperate classes without specifically arranging their character to do so, and that always seems to be for purely powergaming reasons. If you tell your player to give you a roleplaying reason to justify whatever it is that they currently want, they can always think up something dramatic that suits the purpose. Heck, I run a live RPG where I get this all the time... a player wants to take the overly-powerful Ambidexterity/Two-Gun Mojo combo and comes up with some fantastically far-fetched story why their character has this. I say no and suddenly I'm "limiting their roleplaying!" I just say "No, I'm limiting your powergaming. There's a difference." There are several reasons not to have the 3-class limit in NWN, best of all just because the limit does not exist in PnP... ideally it would be up to the DM to roll his eyes in disgust when some player hands him a character with 5 classes just as in real life. "Roleplaying", however, is not one of those reasons.

    Quote: You could set the neck to a certain piece so that a cloak appears when you have a cloak equipped.

    How could you "set the neck" to another body part choice? We have already stated that SetCreatureAppearanceType does NOT allow you to select variable body parts for PCs.


    Quote: Will there be any Drow towns? That'd be cool.

    There is one Drow town, yes.


    Quote: 1.A few towns, besides Waterdeep?

    Nope. We are going to the Underdark, after all, not traipsing about Faerun.


    Quote: 2.A lot of role-playing w/ multiple ways to solve problems/quests, like in SOU?

    There's some, sure.


    Quote: 3.Sharywn as a NPC?

    Maybe.

    Sorry, no bordellos or "relaxation" of any kind. This is D&D.

    Post Comments (0)


    Brian Fargo Returns with The Bard's Tale
    Posted Wednesday, October 1, 2003 - 14:45 CET by Sorcerer

    GameGossip reports (and shows, with 3 screenshots), that Brian Fargo, the author of the The Bard's Tale (the original game is probably older than many of you - it dates back to 1985) is back with another incarnation of the game.

    Here's a bit from the press release:

    “After a nice break from the industry I’m recharged and anxious to make great games again,” said Brian Fargo, CEO of inXile entertainment. “I have collaborated with some of the top people in the industry to create inXile. We believe our success will lie in our business model, our intensive pre-production development philosophy, our commitment to creating an enriching atmosphere for creativity and teamwork and our focus on developing a limited number of triple A titles at a time.”

    You can also read a preview of it at GameSpy.

    The game, which is using an improved version of the Baldur's Gate Dark Alliance engine (the one now being used in EverQuest: Champions of Norrath), is being developed primarily for the PS2, although a PC version is also in the works. "Console RPGs are too linear, Fargo said. "We plan for the game to be so involved that it will be physically impossible to see and do everything if you play through only one time."

    Since this isn't a D&D game, and apparently more of an action RPG than anything else, you probably won't see much coverage of it on SP. The fact that it will only wind up on the PC as a console port isn't helping it much either. But still, I posted this primarily for those of you who played the original game and have fond memories of it. Whether you'll be lured into spending your cash on this latest incarnation simply because of the brand name familiarity or because the game will actually be any good is yet to be seen. My advice would be to carefully watch what independent gaming press writes about it in the months to come.

    Post Comments (0)


    BioWare Reveals 2 New HotU Spells
    Posted Wednesday, October 1, 2003 - 14:20 CET by Sorcerer

    Here are this week's new spells from the second Neverwinter Nights expansion, Hordes of the Underdark, that BioWare revealed:

    Infestation of Maggots

    Caster Level(s): Druid 3
    Innate Level: 3
    School: Necromancy
    Descriptor(s): Disease
    Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
    Range: Touch
    Area of Effect / Target: Creature touched
    Duration: 1 round / 2 levels
    Additional Counter Spells: Remove Disease, Heal
    Save: Fortitude negates
    Spell Resistance: Yes

    With but a touch, you infest a target with maggot-like creatures. They deal 1d4 points of temporary Constitution damage each round. Each round the subject makes a new Fortitude save. The spell ends if the target succeeds at its saving throw.

    Monstrous Regeneration

    Caster Level(s): Cleric 5
    Innate Level: 5
    School: Conjuration
    Descriptor(s): Regeneration
    Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
    Range: Touch
    Area of Effect / Target: Single
    Duration: 1 Round / 2 Caster Levels
    Additional Counter Spells:
    Save: Harmless
    Spell Resistance: No

    For the duration of the spell, the target creature gains the ability to regenerate 10 Hit Points every round.

    Post Comments (0)