Wednesday, June 18, 2014

No, Neverwinter Nights is NOT Dead, Despite EA's Best Efforts

There's been a minor kerfuffle over this announcement EA made saying how they would shut down services for older games, Neverwinter Nights being one of many.

Here's the funny thing: Neverwinter Nights ALREADY had its official online services shut down.  And it made zero difference.

First they shut down the Master Server persistent world admins simply created their own security systems to link player accounts to passwords.  If you're curious about the technical details an example is here.  So the Master Server became irrelevant.

Then they shut the Gamespy for listing servers.  Guess what?  People made alternatives, from lists with the direct connect info (allowing you to bypass Gamespy's listing) to flat out modifying the game client to GET the info from those lists and display them instead of Gamespy's empty space.  Some examples here.  So Gamespy became irrelevant.

If you're curious for more information about the game in general, check out this page.

NWN's potential has always amazed me -- and people collaborate and share their expertise.  Some people make new tilesets.  Others make new creature and item models.  Others still make new visual effects.  Yet others STILL make mechanical improvements to the game and scripting systems (which is personally what I generally do).  And, aside from custom work done for specific online worlds, all of this is openly available for any builder to use and make something amazing.

But, of course, you don't need to how HOW to build in order to play the content.  Can easily log onto worlds and install entire custom campaigns superior to the official campaigns and most modern RPGs.

It's really quite inspiring and why the game still interests me so much, even building my own online world with some major mechanical changes and have produced a few modules already (like the Siege of the Heavens I've mentioned in previous posts).

I still haven't found another game that offers the same -- not Dragon Age modding, not WC3/SC2 modding, not whatever.  Maybe something equivalent will be released someday, but the fact I can produce an online world superior to many AAA MMOs with the right design and enough effort is not something you see very often.

P.S. Turns out that NWN is actually on sale again, so if you email me at balkothwarcraft at gmail dot com before 9 AM CST on June 19th I'll send you a free copy.

P. P.S. In WoW related news, my guild switched from 10 man to 25 man last week and killed 13/14H with H Garrosh to 10% in P3 in two nights (which is all we raid per week, Sun/Mon from 7:30 to 11:30-12:00 CST).  Been 14/14H on 10 man for 15 weeks on that schedule and should be 14/14H 25 man after this week.  Could still use a few more people, though, so if my guild interests you then head over to our website and apply!