Saturday, September 29, 2007

MotB first impressions

Very nice. Graphically a lot smoother for me, and I'm getting less slow-down in fights. AI still a little screwy IMO. But plot intriguing so far, voice acting good, companions interesting.... and lots of nice things I'm seeing that will be great additions to the toolset - waiting for you outside the first town is a horse (woohoo!), which is long-past-due.

Good to hear some new music and will be using that liberally in the future I think.

Here's the new critters - quite exciting to see, and giving me lots of ideas.... and they've only gone and included tentacles!! (see here for my earlier crude attempts).

Friday, September 28, 2007


Well, I'm sitting here at work knowing that Mask of the Betrayer is probably dropping on to my door mat at home about now - preordered it (first time i preordered anything - mainly because I won a £100 amazon voucher through work and had money to burn). Quite looking forward to it.

Really enjoying focussing on playing. Moonshadows was fun, had some really nice ideas, and has picked a a buzz on the vault. Had been geeing myself up to play Sands of Solvheil - especially as it's nice to see a good world-building effort going into this (as a DM of my own homebrew setting, it's nice to see other's ideas). Will try and at least make a start befor the lure of MotB pulls me away, as this looks a great effort.

I released a mini side project i'd been toying with for a while - Unearthed Arcana - new character and roleplaying options based on the book. Fancy being a dwarven warrior with the blood of a gold dragon coursing through your veins? After ironing out a few of the inevitable wrinkles, it seems to be working. But as I suspected, it's a little too unwieldy to be taken up by many players as it requires overides files to work, and I know that scares some off. But the override file does let you use the modifications in any module, which can add something new to the experience.

As I said, playing is helping me enjoy NWN2 more for now, and with the pressure off building for a while, I'm getting more ideas for when i get round to starting work on Dark Avenger Chapter 2 again, which is good. Once I've played with MotB a little, I'll delve back into the toolset and take it from there.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Friday, September 14, 2007


Hm. Progress with Dark Avenger is very slow - mainly through lack of time, but i also fear that it's the realisation that the project is probably not going to see the light of day for a VERY long time, making it harder to focus on with real enthusiasm. I've been thinking for a few weeks now about this - and maybe putting aside my own projects to offer help to some of those that are more likely to be finished - much as E.C. Patterson, skilful creator of the Daark Twins has done by putting aside Garden of All Evils to help out Jackyo with NHiN2. I still feel I have lots of ideas, but not enough time to flesh them out as much as they deserve in one go.

Coupled with this, is the fact that MotB has gone gold (got my preorder in, thanks to winning a competition on Amazon), Purgatorio will soon be out, as well as releases from others like Hugie - that's a lot of playtime coming up! And the bar will be pretty high after all that. I've seen some lament the lack of solo builders as more collaborative/joint projects go ahead (Phoenixus had quite a coup getting dirtywick's help for Tragedy 2, at the cost of us not seeing the Thay story developed, I suppose). But i do think it's difficult for one person to build... (especially someone nearing 30 who's meant to have a grown up job an' all...)

So I'm having a short break, whilst I work on a secret mini-project that will hopefully be feasible with only a few weeks work. But I suppose this is also a call out to anyone who might want someone to help with their projects - dodgy scripting skills, abstract area designer, enthusiastic roleplayer and D&D fan! Dark Avenger will lurk in the background... waiting.... calling, no doubt, but I think I need a healthy dose of realism. And the building community is something I only really discovered with NWN2, but enjoy and want to remain a part of if i can.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

More screenshots

Firstly, this screenshot I had to put up as I just think it's cool! Lucky timing with a screen capture as I meteor swarm a guard in a watchtower. Good to see a meteor swarm effect that wasn't just impacting the ground

Secondly, here's an in-game shot of the village I've been building an mentioning in the previous posts. Normally, I've been sticking to the standard day/night lighting settings, but here I've designed my own settings - it's fixed using the Default lighting (Day/Night Cycle false). The ambient lighting settings are actually very powerful, and it takes quite abit of fiddling to understand what they do, but I'm happy with the gloomy aspect so far. Only downside is all the time I spent texturing is wasted as you can hardly make them out in the darkness! But that's fine as it's ,meant to be dark and ominous, and a prelude to a cool bad guy!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Screenshot - Raven's Lake 2

Update on the abandoned gnomish village I'm building. Doesn't look too different than yesterdays or all th time i spent on it! Main as a lot of it was fiddly item placement around some of the gnomish burrows - lots of lining up and placeable resizing.

The grass will look greener - that's as I've chosen my two core crass teextures for the area. IT's good to fix these from the start to know that all tiles will have 2 textures accounted for in their total 6. I use a practive area to test overlaying the grasses at different percentages to see which go well together. I'm using grass34 (mossy) and grass12 - first placing both down at 50% on the background texture, and then I'' go back and make patches slightly stronger
Place down the cobbled road too - first off at a base 20% - this is because I'll want to strenghten some areas later but keep other more green from the grass, where the path has become overgrown.
Started choosing the trees for the area - much like textures its good to get a core and stick with them (although you can play with the tree seeds to get more variety. Biggest tip I think there is for trees is to remmeber that a) they can be sized and scaled to get variety, and b) they can be lowered under the ground so the trunk isnt visible - this can create some nice undergrowth effects.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Screenshot - Raven's Lake

Early stages of developing an abandoned gnomish village, complete with burrows ;)