I'm massively late in reporting on this, but Obsidian released their Granny plugin on 10 August, which allows users to export animated models from 3dsMax that will work in NWN2.
I don't have the slightest clue how any of that works, but fortunately, there are folks in our community do! Amraphael (of Neverwinter Zork fame), one of the more resourceful builders in the community, immediately used it to create an animated trap door--one of the first things that I remember discovering in the original game. I don't see much on the Vault yet that makes use of this tool, but with the advent of the new contest (see below), I'm sure we'll see more in the near future.
NWN2 for Macintosh
With a hat tip to QSW, who hat tipped Lucky Day, it looks like there may be a Macintosh version of NWN2 in the future. This is terrific news, as it could greatly expand the population of players in our community. Mac users constituted an important minority of players in NWN1, even though the lack of a toolset prevented them from participating as builders. Let's hope that this NWN2 conversion provides them with a stable toolset in addition to a great game!
There have been a slew of good-looking modules released over the past few weeks:
- Dark Avenger by Wyrin_D -- Looks to be the best work yet by NWN2's most prolific author, it's out of beta and has gotten a warm reception.
- Asylum: A Corpse, a Vote by Ryam Baco -- continues the story of the weird psychological thriller, A Bet, A Corpse. How in the world does this not yet have 10 votes?? (and yes, I'm at fault, sorry)
- Conan Chronicles 1 - Legions of the Dead by John McA -- The first NWN2 module by McA, who the author behind the epic and wildly popular Sands of Fate series (among others) for NWN1. You get to be Conan! Who doesn't like the thought of that!? While the scoring hasn't been as high as a mod like Nestlehaven, this module has already gotten 27 votes in just one week, which tells you it's been darn popular.
- The Corruption of Kiahoro by human_male -- Promising 12 hours of gameplay, this module, which was just released yesterday, looks like it has been the result of a lot of work. Looking forward to seeing the reaction to this one.
- Edit (MASSIVE OMISSION): Pool of Radiance 2 by Markus "Wayne" Schlegel -- The sequel to one of the better modules yet released on the vault. This is going to be high on my playlist when I return.
The winners of the fan art contest have been announced, but I wanted to give them a separate posting. So I'll move on to the next contest, which focuses on custom content. From Rob's blog, here are the categories:
- Creature/Monster (requires animations)
- Buildings (can have animations if you like, such as a swinging sign, but don't have to)
- Placeables (can have animations, but don't have to)
- Props & Miscellaneous (equipable items that don't fit into any specific category - such as books and bouquets of flowers)
I'm starting to feel the Neverwinter itch once again, but I think I'm close to finishing final fantasy tactics... Once that happens, look out!