Neverwinter Nights: Hordes of the Underdark Interview

Article Index

Eschalon: Book II

Publisher:Atari
Developer:BioWare Corp.
Release Date:2003-12-02
Genre:
  • Role-Playing
Platforms: Theme: Perspective:
  • Isometric,Third-Person
Buy this Game: Amazon ebay
As many of you already know, BioWare will be releasing Hordes of the Underdark, their second expansion pack for Neverwinter Nights, in December. However, we felt there were some unanswered questions floating around concerning the addon, so we tracked down BioWare's Darcy Pajak (Assistant Producer) and Tom Ohle (Public Relations Specialist) to see if we could shed some light on the Underdark. Our questions and their answers to follow:


GB: First of all, how is Hordes of the Underdark coming along? Are you still on track for a late November release date?

Darcy: Hordes is coming along great. It's a lot of fun creating this expansion pack. With all the new features we are jamming into it, it will be fun for the community as well.

Tom: The team right now is working hard to hit our target release date. The game's fully playable, and it's tons of fun. I think the campaign is superior to anything we've done in Neverwinter so far. The designers have done an amazing job with it.


GB: For those players unfamiliar with epic levels, can you explain how they work and what benefits they will provide for existing characters?

Darcy: In the 3rd-edition D&D rules, epic refers to levels higher than the normal 20 players can achieve in the core rule books. It means that players can keep growing their character to become more and more powerful. In Hordes of the Underdark, we have added many new feats and spells for all classes that achieve greater than 20th level.


GB: Can you provide any hints as to what the remaining prestige classes, feats, or spells that you're adding with the expansion will be?

Darcy: We are adding 6 new prestige classes for Hordes of the Underdark: the Dwarven Defender, which turns a Dwarf fighter into a immovable battle machine; the Champion of Torm, which is an absolute bane to evil and can kill powerful evil creatures in one hit; the Pale Master, who specializes in the black arts of the undead; the Shifter, a class that can take on the shape and abilities of both animals and monsters; and the Weapon Master, a powerful fighting machine. Last but not least, there is the Red Dragon Disciple. This class gains some of the strength and abilities of a red dragon. The BioWare community requested all of these new classes and we hope they enjoy them.


GB: How many new magic items are you implementing into HotU? Care to detail any of the more powerful ones?

Darcy: There are quite a few new magic items we are integrating into Hordes of the Underdark. We're upgrading all the current weapons and items to have attack bonuses ranging from +5 to +20, and adding a Djinni Bottle which contains a store so the player can buy and sell items as long as he has the bottle and gives it a rub once in a while. We are also adding an intelligent weapon the player can find. This black blade gives the player great attack bonuses, and it has a terrifically sour disposition. I guess I would too after being stuck in the hands of a skeleton for centuries.


GB: Other than new tilesets, items and creatures, are there any extra NWN Toolset additions or features, such as new wizards, handy scripts, perhaps a higher resolution?

Darcy: There will be several new toolset features. We have added a new Area property that allows you to set the fog distance. This will give module creators more options in creating the look of areas, and it takes advantage of the new unlocked camera in HotU.

In terms of new graphics, it is possible now to attach wings and/or tails to creatures if they use certain appearances, including all the playable race appearances.

In addition, we have added a Hak Pak sync feature. It will list all the features of Hak Paks and show those that are duplicated, have the highest priority, and which ones override game resources. There's really quite a bit of new stuff for the awesome custom-content community that exists for Neverwinter.



GB: With the new D&D 3.5 ruleset in full force, are you finding it difficult to stick with the 3rd edition ruleset in any way? Have you considered blending the two?

Darcy: We are perfectly happy with the 3.0 ruleset right now. They have allowed us to create some fun and exciting features and adventures, and have no plans to blend the two.
Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance Console Re-release Live, PC Release Announced
Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance Console Re-release Live, PC Release Announced

Over the last few months, Black Isle Studios' social media accounts have


Black Geyser: Couriers of Darkness Update #47 - Publisher Found
Black Geyser: Couriers of Darkness Update #47 - Publisher Found

GrapeOcean Technologies, the team behind Black Geyser: Couriers of Darkness, will be


Wasteland 3 - Desert Rangers Unite for Crowfall
Wasteland 3 - Desert Rangers Unite for Crowfall

While we're waiting for Wasteland 3's The Battle of Steeltown expansion, inXile


Conan Exiles: Isle of Siptah Launch Date Revealed, Coming to Xbox Game Pass
Conan Exiles: Isle of Siptah Launch Date Revealed, Coming to Xbox Game Pass

The big Isle of Spitah expansion for Funcom's survival-RPG Conan Exiles launched


Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Release Date and Previews
Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous Release Date and Previews

Owlcat Games has put together a new beta build for their upcoming


Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord - Campaign Intro
Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord - Campaign Intro

The single-player campaign for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord gets some love


Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance - In-depth Look at the Art Style
Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance - In-depth Look at the Art Style

Tuque Games' creative art director Stefan Leblanc recently penned this article on


Mass Effect: Legendary Edition Promotional Content
Mass Effect: Legendary Edition Promotional Content

With Mass Effect: Legendary Edition launching in about a week, we're treated


Biomutant
Biomutant "May The Furrth" Trailer

With merely three weeks left until the launch of Experiment 101's kung-fu


Dark Messiah of Might and Magic Retrospective
Dark Messiah of Might and Magic Retrospective

Back in 2006, Arkane Studios released Dark Messiah of Might and Magic,


EVE Online - Foundation Quadrant Update Live
EVE Online - Foundation Quadrant Update Live

Foundation, this year's second "Quadrant" update for CCP Games' space MMO EVE


The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Companions System Preview
The Elder Scrolls Online: Blackwood - Companions System Preview

When the Blackwood expansion for The Elder Scrolls Online goes live on


Path of Exile: Ultimatum - Creating the Trialmaster
Path of Exile: Ultimatum - Creating the Trialmaster

Chaos, the guy you may know from all the orbs, exerts his


Hellgate: London - London 2038 Development Update #7
Hellgate: London - London 2038 Development Update #7

The London 2038 team brings us a new developer diary for their


Fallout: Wasteland Warfare - New Vegas Expansion Available For Pre-orders
Fallout: Wasteland Warfare - New Vegas Expansion Available For Pre-orders

Fallout: Wasteland Warfare, the Modiphius-designed Fallout-themed tabletop wargame, will soon be getting