Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Giant Bat on the Vault soon!

I did this giant bat for a fellow GPS member. There have been a couple of requests for a giant bat on the forums. So, it will be released ahead of time.

The bat is just a scaled up version of the OEI bat. The height as been lowered to an appropriate level for combat. Oh yeah, I added the glowing yellow eyes as well. :)

Look for it soon, if interested.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

ItFR – Teaser World Premiere!

by E.C.Patterson

Here now is the teaser trailer for Into the Forgotten Realms I mentioned I was working on (the teaser actually reveals a bit of a title tweak…).

You can get instant satisfaction with the YouTube version, but I recommend you get the 16MB download which has much better images and sound.

The release of this teaser marks the halfway point in the production of ItFR. I'd like to take this occasion to thank you all for your ongoing support, which has without a doubt helped us get to this point.

Monday, July 14, 2008

ItFR: Moving pictures

By E.C.Patterson

To celebrate our anniversary this year, my wife and I got to spend 36 kid-free hours the other weekend at a hotel overlooking Sacacomie lake. This nearly unspoiled lake (spoiled pretty much only by the hotel) is about 2 hours north-east of Montreal.

What do you think I was telling myself while taking in this view from the restaurant terrace or while canoeing on the lake?

“Damn, another weekend wasted. I could be home in my basement right now working on the mod.”

Just joking! Of course I wasn’t thinking that.

But looking at the islands dotting the lake, the gentle hills crowning it, covered by evergreens, I really was contemplating for a moment just how best I could render this landscape in the NWN2 toolset. This is not by any means the first time I have had thoughts along those lines, and I’m convinced most builders have had them too.

I used to view the world in a similar way at the time, many years ago, when I fancied myself a photographer. Everywhere I looked I wasn’t simply seeing the reality before me, but was constantly evaluating the possibility for a photograph, determining angle, analysing the light.

It got really annoying after a while to constantly see the world as a potential picture. And that was part (albeit a minor one) of my decision to let go of that intensive pursuit, and forget about being a photographer.

I hope to be able to guard myself against this happening with modding. So far so good I think.

Into the Forgotten Realms continues to progress. The mod is pretty much at the halfway point now.

As I mentioned before, I’m producing a teaser trailer to mark this event. So some of my modding time lately has gone into filming and editing game footage for it.

Here’s a bit of assembled combat footage put together for the trailer. It’s still a bit crude, and I’m not at all sure it will be part as is of the teaser, but I thought I’d show it to you nonetheless.

ItFR will have heavy combat potential, while being low in hack and slash, if that makes sense. All combat will be logically tied into the plot. The plans are for somewhere around 15 encounters that could result in combat within the 4-5 hours of the mod. The combat minded will be able to handle all these encounters by force, while those inclined to deal with them differently can cut combat by half probably.

Download version (2 mb)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

ITFR : Not much building lately. I’ve been having fun.

by E.C.Patterson

I don’t mean to say of course that building for NWN2 isn’t fun. As an act of creation, I enjoy it tremendously and don’t see myself quitting any time soon. At this point, I believe I’ll go on as long as there is sufficient interest in NWN2 mods and the community is vibrant.

No, but sometimes, there are things I’d rather do with my 60 minutes-a-day free computer time than building. And well, since my heart and soul is firmly with NWN2, that often means just playing the game. (I thought sometime ago that Bioshock might steal me away for a bit, but it hasn’t. After a couple of nights playing, it was put back on the shelf.)

So last week I had a couple of good runs on MotB taking me all the way to the City of Judgment. As with any good thing, I wasn’t eager to end the game right away, so I’ve put MotB on hold for now, and decided to finally play the last chapter of Pool of Radiance Remastered. While RP’ing does feel quite limited in PORR, the mod has fun gameplay and well-crafted areas. Because of its general look and feel and its length, I consider it the most professional-grade NWN2 community mod out there right now (for better and for worse ;) )

Nonetheless, Into the Forgotten Realms has progressed somewhat in the past days. Xandurpein (author of Shadow of the Underdark and Tanithiel’s maker) and I have been having some great discussions on plot for the Cormanthor section of the mod. You’ll have to deal with the drow presence in the area, and while wiping them out will be an option (expect tough, monumental fights if you decide to go this way), it will not be the only course of action. Xandurpein, a drow expert of sorts, will be writing much of the drow convos for that part of the story. I’m glad of that because if there’s anything bogging down ItFR somewhat right now, it’s all the writing that has to be done.

Besides that, there’s been a bit of area building happening, including this catacomb, which makes me feel somewhat productive.

So, Joyeuse belated Saint-Jean-Baptiste to Quebecers reading this (if any!) and Happy Canada Day too. This is the heart of summer here with two national holidays within 7 days of each other. This, and the nice weather, isn't helping building on ItFR much either... :)