Neverwinter Nights FAQ Posted
4:52 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story
BioWare has updated the official web site for their upcoming online RPG Neverwinter Nights with an extensive FAQ that answers many a rhetorical questions about this title. While the final version of this game may be almost eight months to a year away, the structure and gameplay behind it seem quite well-developed. If you are interested in this title and want to learn more, this FAQ is a great place to start.
One element of online play has always marred online RPGs in the past: cheating. From Diablo to EverQuest to Ultima Online, there will always be those that choose to artificially advance their character by one means or another. The NWN FAQ reveals a unique method for preventing such cheating, and provides a way those who do advance their character legitimately to verify that and be justly proud. Here is the FAQ question about the Character Vault:
19. What is neverwinter.net's "Character Vault" technology, and what will it do? For many more details, be sure and read through the FAQ. Modem users beware -- the NWN site is 'graphically intensive,' so to speak. NWN is due for Mac, PC, Linux and perhaps BeOS in the third quarter of 2001.
Neverwinter Nights FAQ at BioWare
The "Character Vault" is a means for players to protect themselves against cheating and character imbalances. The Vault works like a library: you create an 'official' character on neverwinter.net and, when you enter a game module, that character is automatically checked out of the Vault. Upon your completion of the module, your character is checked back in and processed through a series of filters. Drawing on fair, pre-determined standards of advancement, these filters monitor the amount and quality of treasure the character brings back, any changes in the character's core attributes, the power of their magical items, and the experience they have gained, comparing them to the length of time that the character has been absent from the Vault. If any of these standards are exceeded, the player is faced with a choice: they can maintain their 'official' status by dropping items, restoring statistics, or cutting experience points; or they can opt to lose that 'official' status by saving the non-filtered character locally for use on servers willing to permit 'unofficial' characters. If the player chooses to save locally, a copy of their last 'official' version of their character will remain in the Vault for future use. Server Operators / DMs will have the means to police their own servers and can choose to admit only those characters that bear the official "Character Vault" stamp of approval. With the "Character Vault," being an officially sanctioned 10th level mage will really mean something.
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