New Encounter System

Posted on January 15, 2009

Today I would like to talk a little about a new encounter system that I’ve started working on. I call it… the PnP Encounter System (no, I’m not very good at coming up with names) and it’s a faithful remake of the encounter system from Pen and Paper.

It all began a couple days ago when I was looking to alternatives to the default encounter system in NWN for Tir-Nimphel. I checked the vault for a good system that would allow me to easily create encounter tables, would be easy to implement, easy to maintain and wouldn’t cause any unnecessary lag due to heartbeats or similar calls but I couldn’t find anything I liked, so I went ahead and made my own system.

The encounter table is a 2DA, which makes it very easy to add new creatures to it, and it works similar to the original NWN system in that it runs from triggers. Absolutely no scripting knowledge is required to use it – all you need to do is alter the 2DA using a text editor and change a few variables on your triggers. I can hear you ask “But Bel, aren’t 2DA’s supposed to be slow?”, well that may have been true once, but now we’ve got 1.69 which updated the 2DA caching so you can keep as many as you’d like in memory at once by just changing a setting in nwnplayer.ini. This means that the 2DA should be kept in memory most of the time so there’s almost no search time.

So what does this mean? Well, it means that non-scripters and even novice builders can easily create encounters similar to those in Pen and Paper where you fight a group of dire badgers on the road to the dungeon and a batch of goblins when you head back to town to sell your loot.

Now, this system is still very much in beta and requires a few fixes, optimizations and added features before I upload it anywhere, but even after 6 hours of development time it is already shaping up to be a nice alternative to other encounter systems.

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The Mad Bishop – First Screens Revealed!

Posted on January 11, 2009

Here are the first ever screen-shots from the upcoming Neverwinter Nights module, The Mad Bishop, to be released to the public.  While the following images are most likely indicative of the module, all content is subject to change drastically before release.

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Happy New Year!

Posted on January 1, 2009

27 Gaming would like to wish you all a happy New Year.  Also, I would like to apologize for the lack of public information made available regarding The Mad Bishop.  Due to some severe computer problems we are running behind in the development schedule, but will be releasing some information and early screenshots soon.  Thank you for your patience.

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27 Gaming Interviewed at NWN Podcast!

Posted on December 19, 2008

A few weeks back, Belnoroth and myself, VaeVictusX, were interviewed about The Mad Bishop, Tir-Nimphel, and how we became involved in the community. The interview is now released in Episode 85 of the only Neverwinter Nights Podcast. This will be the last episode of 2008 and we at 27 Gaming are proud to be a part of it. We’d like to thank Trey and Skunkeen for interviewing us and the entire podcast crew for their dedication to the community.

By the end of the year you can expect more detailed information regarding The Mad Bishop including some early screenshots and more specific information regarding the setting. As more work is done on both The Mad Bishop and Tir-Nimphel we will be in contact with the Neverwinter Nights Podcast crew to keep the community informed of our progress. If you found out about us by listening to the podcast, why not leave a comment and let us know? We’d sure appreciate it.

The Mad Bishop: NWN Module Announced.

Posted on November 6, 2008

The Mad Bishop - A Neverwinter Nights Adventure - Coming Soon!

The Mad Bishop - A Neverwinter Nights Adventure - Coming Soon!

The Mad Bishop is a Neverwinter Nights module currently in development by 27 Gaming and will require Neverwinter Nights, the Shadows of Undrentide expansion pack, and the Hordes of the Underdark expansion to be installed and patched to version 1.69. It will be a single-player Rogue focused module featuring an intriguing storyline and interesting puzzles. More information will be available soon.

Tir-Nimphel changing

Posted on November 28, 2007

After much consideration I have decided to make Tir-Nimphel in NWN 1 instead. The NWN 2 version may some day see the light, but at the moment we will focus on the NWN 1 version.

The main reasons for the change are that I feel that multiplayer is far too clumsy and that the toolset in NWN 2, while allowing more control over things, is too slow to work with. Another major reason is the size issue, making Tir-Nimphel in Neverwinter Nights 2 means we have to limit ourselves when making areas in order to keep the file size down, or have a greatly limited number of areas, whereas in NWN 1 we can have hundreds of areas before we hit the RAM limit.

Work began on the Neverwinter Nights 1 version last Saturday and I expect to have enough areas for a small beta this weekend. The only Hak Pak required for the beta server will be CEP 2, but in the future I intend to include a couple others once we get more players.

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