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Preview Underdark gawked by PC.IGN

Saint_Proverbius

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Tags: BioWare; Neverwinter Nights: Hordes of the Underdark

There's a <a href="http://pc.ign.com/articles/453/453372p1.html">preview</a> of <a href="http://nwn.bioware.com/underdark/">NWN: Hordes of the Underdark</a> at <A href="http://pc.ign.com">PC.IGN</a>, detailing all the uber-ness you can expect to find in the expansion. Things like this:
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<br>
<blockquote>Though intended for characters who've hit the double digits in terms of level, BioWare's even giving your high level characters enough room to grow by raising the overall level cap of the game from 20 to 40. Through the course of the 20-hour single player campaign, you'll doubtless have the opportunity to break through to achieve the new abilities for your character. Over 700 new feats and skills have been added to help characters manifest their bad-assness at a level commensurate with their ability.</blockquote>
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<br>
And here I thought level 20 in 3E was overpowered! Heck, 15th level is pretty over the top.
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<br>
Spotted this at <a href="http://www.homelanfed.com">HomeLAN Fed</a>
 

JanC

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It's silly. At that level I tend to forget half of the things my character can do, and stick to a few tried and tested moves.
 

Rayt

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Level 40? Heh, I mean, Helm is level 40 if I'm not mistaken and he's one of the most powerfull Faerun gods. So if your character is level 30, there's basicly nothing out there that's even remotely challenging save for the deities and maybe a couple of demon lords/princes.

Ah, maybe it's focused on roleplaying and not on hack&slash goodness.
 

Psilon

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This isn't necessarily a confirmation of hack-and-slash, but a few months ago one of the BioWare guys (I think it was Dave Gaider) said that they were introducing epic levels, not an epic campaign setting, with the expansion. As a result, don't look for deicide opportunities or leaping from plane to plane.

I'm most curious to see how the splitting of Persuade will work in the official and SoU campaigns. Will it be possible to take a level 30 cleric or bard in and actually make some of those forced Persuade checks? Could you convince Aribeth to ignore the dreams, even if she just gets hit by a Dire Charm later?

Probably not, since it would play merry hell with keeping the various versions (cheap-bastard-vanilla NWN, SoU, HotU, and SoU+HotU) in sync, but it's still an intriguing idea.
 

Diogo Ribeiro

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Psilon said:
This isn't necessarily a confirmation of hack-and-slash, but a few months ago one of the BioWare guys (I think it was Dave Gaider) said that they were introducing epic levels, not an epic campaign setting, with the expansion. As a result, don't look for deicide opportunities or leaping from plane to plane.

I'm most curious to see how the splitting of Persuade will work in the official and SoU campaigns. Will it be possible to take a level 30 cleric or bard in and actually make some of those forced Persuade checks? Could you convince Aribeth to ignore the dreams, even if she just gets hit by a Dire Charm later?

Probably not, since it would play merry hell with keeping the various versions (cheap-bastard-vanilla NWN, SoU, HotU, and SoU+HotU) in sync, but it's still an intriguing idea.

Interesting possibilities, but i highly doubt it. Im sure the compromises just wouldnt be worth it. If these things were taken into consideration, however, they'd rise up in my consideration scale. At least it'd prove they actually care about presenting roleplaying instead of rollplaying.
 

Visceris

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Epic level rules are just there to Diablo-ize DnD, and nothing more.
 

Psilon

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Is Persuade still in, or is it being eliminated in favor of the new skills (whose names escape me at the moment)? If the former, I don't expect any OC changes. If it's the latter, then I suspect every check with the old scripting code will be reprocessed automatically into one of the new skills.
 

Sabotai

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Hasbro/WotC probably wouldn't allow the slaying of deities. Or maybe just the good gods.

Isn't this somewhere covered in their moral guidelines under "God-slaying"?
 

Anonymous

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There is an Epic Level Handbook for 3rd Edition, it's basically there to keep people who wanna go over 20 with goodies and supply bad-ass monsters for epic campaigns.

Level 20 is basically the cap, unless your DM wants to take the sessions into epic settings, but that only really happens after a long deal of playing. NWN is too hackn'slashy and too easy for epic levels to be any good in it.

I played 3rd Edition quite often a year or two ago, I got up to level 21 on a Human Barbarian.

Epic games can be fun, but they are hard to get right because everyone is usually insanely powerful to the point where the whole session becomes a number comparison between the players.

HotU is not an epic campaign, the level 40 cap is fluff to quell the 'I dont know a damn thing about 3rd Edition, so I complain about the level 20 cap!' and to get more BioWare fanboys to supply them money with such a 'required' expansion (basically you NEED to have it to be the most powarfuel fiter evar!!111')

I'd like to congradulate BioWare for proving yet again they know shit about Dungeons and Dragons and RPGs in general.
 

Whipporowill

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So 20 levels and a campaign of 20 hours? Makes sense... or NOT.

(either they don´t intend for levelling to 40 in the campaign or they´ll spoil the players more than even they´re used to)
 

Eron

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Messages
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Geesh.. Do you guys even like RPGs? .. I welcome epic levels.. There WILL be modders that will be able to make a challenging mod for epic levels.. Don't worry!

Man, I swear, people just bitch no matter what you do.
 

Vault Dweller

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Eron said:
Geesh.. Do you guys even like RPGs? .. I welcome epic levels.. There WILL be modders that will be able to make a challenging mod for epic levels.. Don't worry!

Man, I swear, people just bitch no matter what you do.
People bitch for a reason and they stated their reasons in the past. You, however, just made a vague statement "I welcome epic levels". Care to elaborate?
 

Eron

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Well, thanks for wanting to hear it.. Sure I'll elaborate.

First, let me say how I feel about D&D and lvl 20 cap to begin with.

I think it's great. Many of my friends think I am crazy, but I feel a character with a life of 20 levels add's a sense of motallity to the game. After lvl 20 once could be considered a demi-god. I enjoy the fact that a game as complex and D&D can be wrapped up in 20 character levels.

It's hard to explain really, but I understand why lvl 20 is the max.

So why am I eager for epic levels.. Well, to sum it up in a nutshell.. WHY NOT? If Bioware wants to make new monsters to accomidate, and new skills, feats, spells, ect.. WHY would I not want it??

Yes, there are powergamers out there that STILL won't be appeased, but why would anyone scoff at the chance to develop thier character even further.. But I must admit, I definatley enjoyed the line drawn between gods, and characters.. So, the lvl 20 cap DID indeed appeal to me..

But. let's face it. NWN is not exactly what we were hoping for in many ways, and mabey this will breathe new life into it..

It's NOT pnp. and it can be a lot of fun when played with like minded people..

So, I say bring on the epic levels..

Mabey my answer was not enough to explain myself, but I do understand why some felt lvl 20 was great,..

Fact is, most don't/..
 

Voss

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So...
you accept and approve of an idea that sets a maximum of human(and assorted whatnots) potential. But exceeding that is just fine too.

So, metaphorically, you'd accept that most people couldn't run a mile in a minute, but its OK if they run it in 10 seconds?

Odd.

The problem I see with epic levels is that the balance between player and monsters is screwed up as it is. Tossing epic levels in at random (because they don't seem to be adding epic challenges) in order to appease the hackity/slashity power gaming crowd that think they're playing diablo, seems to be a poor design decision, thats simply going to make things worse.

Of course, I think the chapters as modules structure undermines the game a bit too- theres no inherent continuity and no game-world consequences. It doesn't matter how (or if) you finished the earlier part of the campaigns, because the next part will automatically start at a default state uninfluenced by player action. Which means that the higher levels (which at least in RP focused PnP campaigns (as opposed to the hack/slash or monty haul campaigns) where politicking and world shaking events tended to happen, are simply more hack/slash. Huzzah. Gets a bit tiring after a while, doesn't it?
 

Peacedog

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I thumbed through the epic levels handbook in B&N some time ago (pre 3.5).

Yes, there are powergamers out there that STILL won't be appeased

From the look of the rules, the epic levels seem to be entirley about powergaming. That's it.
 

EEVIAC

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Eron said:
So why am I eager for epic levels.. Well, to sum it up in a nutshell.. WHY NOT? If Bioware wants to make new monsters to accomidate, and new skills, feats, spells, ect.. WHY would I not want it??

But aren't there things that you would want more? Personally I couldn't give a toss about epic levels because one the things I enjoy most in RPG's is taking a relatively weak character and putting them in a situation that they shouldn't be able to overcome. That moment in an RPG where you realize that your character or party is no longer crap, is golden - its the most satisfying part of the experience.

The whole idea of epic characters goes against the internal character dialogue that I have, that after my adventurous rogue or cleric has finished a campaign, say IWD, they retire to the good life and start a store or a temple or a training camp (only to be wiped out a few years later by a Goblin rush or some such nonsense. :roll: )

Maybe I'm not ambitious enough, but high-level adventuring (in any game, from any company) just doesn't appeal to me.
 

Jed

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Yeah, I have to agree with the anti-epic opinions. My favorite part of any campaign is when every arrow matters, every gold piece is worth it, every potion needed and used...a little bit after that point, when the game becomes a cakewalk, I get bored. Mortality is exciting. Allowing a character to become godly and throwing more and more ridiculously overpowered enemies at her/him is just not that interesting...
 

Nomad

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Epic levels prevents _you_ from role-playing _your_ character the way _you_ want because...?

I find it amusing that you're offended because of a feature that you would likely never use in an expansion that you will probably never buy for a game that you hate by a company you despise. It's such a ridiculous idea that it puts a smile on my face every time I think about it.

Thinking back a bit, I remember the D&D Basic, Expert, Companion, Master and _Immortal_ rules boxed sets. I also seem to recall reading in the original Deities and Demigods about how to achieve godhood (although I could be wrong about that). Now, there's the Epic Level Handbook in 3rd edition. All of these things are approved source material from the creators of the rules (Hasbro / WotC / TSR).

This seems to suggest that D&D is as much about powergaming as it is about deep role-playing. Therefore, what's wrong with getting some of what has been part of the rules in one way or another for 20 years, in NWN? How does this demonstrate that BioWare knows nothing about D&D or RPGs?

As in PnP, epic levels in NWN can be ignored by the module creator or DM, so how does this create a problem for you?


N.

[Edited for typos.]
 

Saint_Proverbius

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Voss said:
The problem I see with epic levels is that the balance between player and monsters is screwed up as it is. Tossing epic levels in at random (because they don't seem to be adding epic challenges) in order to appease the hackity/slashity power gaming crowd that think they're playing diablo, seems to be a poor design decision, thats simply going to make things worse.

That's the problem I have with D&D right now. They basically took the D&D system and tossed on feats, so now instead of fighters getting two attacks at level five, depending on the conditions and feats, they could be wiping out scores of goblins in one round by level 5. Get Combat Reflexives, Power Attack, Cleave and Great Cleave.. Really, you're a walking death march right there.
 

Azael

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Saint_Proverbius said:
That's the problem I have with D&D right now. They basically took the D&D system and tossed on feats, so now instead of fighters getting two attacks at level five, depending on the conditions and feats, they could be wiping out scores of goblins in one round by level 5. Get Combat Reflexives, Power Attack, Cleave and Great Cleave.. Really, you're a walking death march right there.

Sounds like my spiked chain wielding ToEE fighter :D (well, except for Great Cleave, I've invested in Comba Expertise so I can get the Improved Trip feat).

Epic levels could be interesting if there was a truly epic campaign, it seems to me that while you're on the Prime Material plane there shouldn't be enough of a challenge for epic level characters. It's not like you're going to stumble over draco liches every day (well, knowing Bioware you probably will).
 

Volourn

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I have to agree. There IS a difference between epic levels, and an epic campaign. And, no, BIO won't be making an "epic" campaign - not in 20-30 hours of gameplay. Quite frankly, that's impossible.

That said, epic levels are not such a big deal to whine over. I say if you don't like epic levels; don't use 'em. One must remember that supposedly in the OC you won't be getting past level 25 most likely (I say 27-28) so you won't b egetting too deep.

Plus, whether you like it or not, epic levels are VERY much a part of D&D, and unlike robes and cloaks; epic levels are the number oen thing most fans want so it only makes sense for BIo to add them. Plus, factor in that most people who think BIO are retarded for ading epic levels are the same ones who are least likely to buy the game in the first place.

Go figure.
 

Voss

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Saint_Proverbius said:
That's the problem I have with D&D right now. They basically took the D&D system and tossed on feats, so now instead of fighters getting two attacks at level five, depending on the conditions and feats, they could be wiping out scores of goblins in one round by level 5. Get Combat Reflexives, Power Attack, Cleave and Great Cleave.. Really, you're a walking death march right there.

See, I don't have much of a problem with this. Yes, this fighter build can chop through minions 3-4 levels below him, but against foes of equal or greater level (or CR) he isn't uber. And in fact, they can do the same things, so it balances out quite nicely. And it isn't much different from a 5th level spellcaster fire-balling the little blighters, except the fighter takes a little more risk in doing it. (which is as it should be)

At mid-levels, Goblins and the like become like rats in fallout- you want to be able to get through them quickly so you can move on with more interesting encounters.
 

Astromarine

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Not to mention that conversely, meeting a monster or NPC just a couple levels higher than you can make for a gruelling, uberhard combat.
 

Azael

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One of the more interesting aspects of 3E (to a non-D&D player like me) seems to be the monster levels. While coming across a single goblin that looks like an easy kill, you could actually be surprised as you realize that he's in fact a high-level fighter (or at least that's how I understand it).

Epic levels however, seems to be solely aimed for the players who think it's fun to stand 10' above all other living creatures in the game world, which they will unless Bio pulls another ridiculous stunt like having common guards of a medium sized city be high-level fighters carrying +3 weapons. Come to think of it, that's probably exactly what they'll do.
 

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