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Old January 4th, 2007, 07:03 AM
White Warlock White Warlock is offline
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Hello All,

This is my first time in this community, but i will admit having played the basic set of Traveller back in the late 70's and early 80's, still owning them and about 20 or so other 5"x8" books. Even bought the Megatraveller release in the hopes of seeing advancements.

Okay then, down to the point of my entry here. For the past 5+ years i've been participating in some rather large Neverwinter Nights (NWN) projects. I was never really satisfied with NWN, and thus was not encouraged to communicate outside of that community about the virtues and functionality of the toolset.

However, things have changed. NWN2 was released in October of 2006. NWN2 offers far better graphics and allows for more with the toolset. In fact, i'm reasonably confident that with a good amount of interested people, Traveller Basic can be recreated with it, and members here can play together in multiplayer roleplaying sessions utilizing the graphic engine of NWN2.

For those who are not familiar with NWN2, it is a newer, far better, version of NWN. NWN is a D&D -based computer game that allows you to create your own modules and host them. While still in its infancy, NWN2 shows great promise and the community is taking great strides in overcoming obstacles.

At first glance, NWN2 looks to be just another Fantasy CRPG, with the option of multiplay. Further inspection, however, presents a utility called a DMclient, which allows one person to host the game and act as a DM, being able to pose creatures and events, and even take over NPCs so you can interact directly with players ingame.

Even further in your inspection, and you'll note the incredibly powerful toolset, which allows you to create your own modules, inclusive of buildings, sewers, caves, rivers, mountains, forests, dogs, cats, farmers and gnats.

Now i know NWN was discussed in the past, but there were a few misnomers. The same misnomers, i suspect, will travel to NWN2 if i don't address them here and now.

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  • 1. "Only Computer Geeks can get it running" - This assumption is incredibly wrong. While it helps to have a background in 3d modeling, programming, hosting, or any of the other myriad of skills that are oh so great, it is simply not a necessity. NWN2 has a very large community support group that has provided, and will continue to provide, scripts and tools to make the task of building modules 'relatively' easy.

    2. "The Toolset requires years of practice" - absolutely not true. When i first opened up the toolset, i was intimidated to no end. I closed the program and opted to play the game instead. But, then i read a tutorial called, "Hitchhikers Guide to NWN2 Toolset" and all my doubts almost immediately washed away. I have no background in this, and yet in only weeks, i've been able to create some nice areas. And if you attach some of the extra tools that the NWN2 community has created, you can develop content very quickly.

    3. "It requires a powerful computer" - While NWN2 does need a good video card, and a reasonably good computer, it does not require a 'powerful' computer. In fact, it is on par with many of the existing games' requirements. Also, the game allows you to modify your settings so you can run it with less pops and whistles.

    4. "You can't run a roleplaying session on it" - this is so far from the truth, it deserves a smack. If you are a DM, and you have players, the roleplaying session is entirely based on how you, the DM, and your players wish to play the game. In fact, it has been argued that you can play a far more immersive roleplay session because now players are able to interact with each other rather than just the world and the DM.

    5. "No use making Traveller with NWN2, because Obsidian's EULA on material produced means they keep our work" - So incredibly incorrect. Visit www.nwvault.com and understand that any content you provide is publicy shared... unless you don't provide it publicly, in which case nobody gets it, and nobody builds upon it. When you create something, and you post it at NWVault, it is shared to the community, and Obsidian will not, and cannot, remove it. Obsidian is following the same actions as Bioware (the developers of NWN), in that they hope to collect good work and add it to their later releases, but the initial work done by the community will still be out there for free. As to fears of Obsidian grabbing any Traveller module and selling it, they can't. Not without permission from Marc Miller. So while you can create content utilizing the NWN2 engine, and attempt to emulate many of Traveller's characteristics, as long as you don't attempt to make a profit from it... you're in the clear.

    6. "You can't make it into a space theme" - Awhile back some people made Firefly material for NWN. That was not as good a utility as NWN2, and yet they did it. NWN2 offers greater possibilities, and while this community may, or may not, have the talents needed to create the content... i'll tell right now, we don't need it.</font>
If there is sufficient interest in this, we can take our interest to the NWN2 community and very likely recruit talent to help develop Traveller content.

For now, lets discuss it here in this thread and see just how much interest exists. Do you want this? Do you want to be able to meet up with all your old Traveller friends and have 3D online games with almost everything mundane being automated, and the only features you need to focus on are enjoying the game and the ingame interaction with other Traveller enthusiasts?

Thanks for reading
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