Neverwinter Nights 2 Interviews

Another pair of Neverwinter Nights 2 interviews have surfaced on the web, this time over at Mania Games and IGN Australia. Here's an excerpt from the Mania Games interview with various members of the development team:
Q: One of the unfortunate aspects of the parry skill in NWN 1, is that it was not as versatile as it is in pen and paper D&D. I am wondering if you carried the parry skill over to NWN 2, and if so, what improvements did you make to its functionality so that it's a useful skill to invest in? Likewise what other skills have been improved?

A: The parry skill was carried over from Neverwinter Nights 1 and it has very similar functionality. Parry has become much more useful with the addition of prestige classes that cast in the middle of combat, such as the Eldrich Knight. Turning the skill on in the new mode bar allows you to easy cast spells while parrying attacks in between your spellcasting.

You will also notice that we tried to put an increased focus on options while in conversations. For that reason we introduced the Diplomacy skill into Neverwinter Nights 2. You now have even more versatility when it comes to talking your way out of a bad situation or into a good one.

Another big addition is the new Craft Alchemy skill which allows you to create Alchemist's Fire, acid, and poisons. You are also able to extract magical essences which are used to enchant items, weapons, and armor with powerful magics.

The biggest departure skill-wise from Neverwinter Nights 1 was probably the removal of the Discipline skill. This was done to facilitate an experience much closer to pencil and paper Dungeons and Dragons. Feats that used Discipline, such as Knockdown, now do opposed strength checks to determine success or failure.

And an excerpt from the earlier IGN Australia interview with lead designer Josh Sawyer:
Q: The crafting system has been given a significant upgrade since the original game. Can you discuss some of the new ways players can use their crafting abilities?

A: Crafting in NWN2 allows characters to create a wide variety of base items and also to enchant exist items with additional properties.

The player can choose to focus in Craft Alchemy (create poisons and alchemical bombs, distil essences from creature remains), Craft Armor, Craft Weapons (create base armor and weapons from a variety of materials like cold iron, mithril, and adamantine), Craft Traps (create traps that can be placed in the world for enemies to trigger), and Craft Magic Arms and Armor (enchanting existing weapons and armor), Craft Wondrous Items (miscellaneous magic). The player can build things by finding recipes, collecting the ingredients listed in the recipes, and preparing them at workbenches in the world.

Players also still have the ability to create run-of-the-mill potions, scrolls, and wands using empty bottles, blank scrolls, and bone wands that they find.