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Friday, November 24, 2000

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Neverwinter Nights Preview
10:03 AM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story

Although the release of this game is quite far off in the future, we just can't help getting excited about this online RPG from BioWare. Neverwinter Nights won't be complete until late next Summer; in the meantime Eurogamer has cooked up a short preview (along with several screen shots that appear to be new) to whet your post-Thanksgiving appetite.

This preview doesn't contain much in the way of new information, for those who have been following the development of this title. But for those of you just discovering this RPG, this will be an excellent introduction to this ambitious project. Not only is BioWare going to create a flexible, true-3D gaming world based on the Third Edition D&D rules, they are going to bring back the Dungeon Master:

But although the game features a strong single player component, it is the multiplayer features which really make it stand out from the crowd, with a mixture of both competitive and co-operative modes. Gladiator-style arena combat between players is a strong possibility for those of you looking for a simple deathmatch environment, while treasure hunts and castle sieges are apparently on the cards if you want something a little more interesting.

What is really getting hardcore role-players excited though is the return of the dungeon master. In traditional pen and paper games the dungeon master plays the role of guide, storyteller and judge, interpreting the rules and the storyline as he sees fit and explaining what is happening to the players. Usually this job falls to the computer, but now Bioware are planning to bring human dungeon masters to computer role-playing games, hopefully producing a more interesting and immersive story-based multiplayer experience.

As with any set of tools, they may be used poorly or well; only time will tell if enough dedicated DMs create and maintain decent dungeons to expand the multiplayer experience of this title. Considering the amazing quality of many UT and Q3A 'mods' out there, and the flexibility of the NWN editing tools, we think the online creations may end up being 'better' than the solo experience created by Bioware themselves! Read on for more details and a few nifty images of this game in action.

Neverwinter Nights Preview at EuroGamer
Neverwinter Nights Web Site
Neverwinter Nights
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