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Neverwinter Nights
July 22, 2003 | Christopher Morin

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Much has been written about Neverwinter Nights (NWN) over the past several years. It was released for the PC last year, and since then, legions of devoted RPG gamers have been addicted to the game. Alas, we Mac users have been in the position of being forced to wait and look on with envy at our PC compadres. The list of games that have kept Mac gamers waiting is long enough to choke a horse.

Bioware spent many years developing NWN and making it a title as close to pen-and-paper Dungeons and Dragons as possible. To that end, they created a Dungeon Master (DM for those versed in the D&D lingo) module, online play and a tool set for creating your own campaigns. The tool set has been the most hotly debated topic among Mac gamers, though it has been a dead issue for some time. Of course, it has been stated for a long time that the NWN tool set would not see the light of day on the Mac, all other features of the game will be available, including any campaigns created by others.

I am sure there are a myriad of reasons the Mac version has taken this long to ship. In the words of Led Zepplin, “It’s been a long time since” we have been told the game would ship, but as of very recently, MacSoft committed themselves to shipping the game in the month of July 2003. So, despite the endless delays and changed release dates, NWN is coming to the Mac.

What is Neverwinter Nights?
Neverwinter Nights is an RPG game based on the 3rd Edition of the Dungeons and Dragons rule set. As with many other Bioware games, NWN is in the rich Forgotten Realms setting. For those unfamiliar with this fantasy realm, it is a property of Wizards of the Coast who also own Dungeons and Dragons. The city of Neverwinter sits along the Sword Coast almost midway between the great city of Waterdeep and the northern outpost of Luskan.

Neverwinter has fallen under a terrible plague that stymied the wisest within Neverwinter. A powerful wizard from Waterdeep discerned that only components from four rare creatures could concoct a cure for the mysterious plague. Your character is an academy recruit part of a class of trainees recruited to help the Lords of Neverwinter find a cure to the plague. After the attack, only a few of the academy leaders survived, and of course, your character. The academy leader, the Lady Aribeth, calls upon you to help her locate the missing creatures and divine the source of the attack on the academy.

NWN has been in beta testing for quite some time. It has been a long process, but the game looks great. Be sure to note the system requirements and make your purchase accordingly. The NWN Tech Demo does run pretty well on my G4 450 with 512MB RAM, OS 10.2.6 and a 32MB Radeon card. If your system falls below these specs, NWN may not be the game for you as it likes lots of horsepower. Also, you must have OS 10.2.6 or better for optimal performance.


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