The Gamemasters

The Gamemasters
What Manner of Game

Bruce Nielson | 6 Sep 2005 08:05
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At last, with this mod, the holy grail of roleplaying is within our reach! Imagine a roleplaying module where the multiple factions are all played by real people and the story "emerges" from actions of the players. To rescue the duchess, you must break into a prison guarded by real players. The lich terrorizing the countryside that you are on a quest to destroy is actually a real player. The possibilities are endless.

The Starving Artist Finds an Audience
I feel Neverwinter Nights is a medium very different than traditional PnP D&D. For DMs, this is the ultimate chance to create something unique and have other people join in. Consider the difficulty of writing a novel and trying to get it self- published. Yet, in NWN anyone can easily write their "novel" as a series of adventures, and then actually watch people play it online. Imagine watching player's reactions to your story twists or to puzzling traps. I find that I can even make improvements for each new round of players, as I play through my creations many times with different groups.

There is a whole community of people ready and willing to partake in a DMed game of Neverwinter Nights. NWN is really a whole new art form, and probably the most freely accessible one in terms of capturing an audience. Even people who can't script can create full adventures and run them using the DM-client. The community made "DM Friendly Initiative" wands-and-widgets package will help budding DMs make the most of such an adventure.

While I will always love pen-and-paper RPGs, I find that Neverwinter Nights is superior in terms of roleplaying and characterization, speed of combat, and depth of story. In addition, I have found it capable of creating certain types of scenarios not possible in PnP games, and much easier to find an audience for. I suppose that is why I made the jump to NWN to get my roleplaying fix.

Bruce Nielson is the designer of The Light Reborn, a critically acclaimed and popular module series for Neverwinter Nights designed with online Dungeon Masters in mind. He was also the producer for the Great Battles of History series created by Erudite Software and Interactive Magic.

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