Neverwinter Nights Progress
Neverwinter Nights' producer, Trent Oster has updated the official site for the game with information on the current progress of the title. With all the excellent work Black Isle Studios and Bioware have done on past games, this is sure to be one amazing experience once it hits the store shelves.
Believe it or not, the programming is running on schedule. Comparing where we are now to the programming plan we made in April, we are plus or minus a week or two on most tasks. Of course there are a few tasks we should've started already, but we have also completed some tasks that weren't scheduled for completion until next year.
One of the tasks that was done early was the porting of the machine dependent portions of the game framework. We have the Mac, Linux, and BeOS versions up to date with the Windows versions. Yes, even BeOS (though, for the record, we don't have any final plans for the distribution of the various OS versions). We even had a Windows server running with Windows, Mac, Linux and BeOS clients all running around together in one of our test areas.
We have pretty much finished up all of the non-game related coding. Everything from now on is user interface, game behaviors, and rule systems. Of course this is actually the bulk of the work, but it will be nice to see the game features start to appear. We are currently working on the internals of the inventory system and, once that is done, we will be tackling the combat system. The combat system will probably be an ongoing task, but we are hoping to have a preliminary system to tinker with soon.
On the Art front, modeling and texturing is progressing with the city of Luskan. We updated the BioWare website over the course of the month and have made some solid progress on concepting both characters and tilesets. We're also starting to work out many of the functional and artistic details of the graphical interface. Unfortunately, art at this stage of the project is a lot of hard work with very little final content to show for it. We are planning on a lean period for new screenshots and artwork over the next few months.
Design has been focused on the writing of the implementation plans and staying current with the latest updates to the 3rd Edition rules. We have made some revisions to our storyline, adding depth to the player's experience and making it more fantastic, as well as helping it fit better with the new D&D rules. The first implementation plan recently crossed my desk and is exactly what it was intended to be: an extremely in-depth detailing of a module. It will be an invaluable reference for the writers and scripters, and a bible for our testers. We may also bundle them up as text files and make them accessible to the DMs and module designers so everyone can better understand the details of the module and the process we went through to get there. At about 25 pages apiece, these little nuggets of joy are going to be keeping the Design Department busy well into the future.
Neverwinter Nights is a huge undertaking and will require a great deal of expertise and commitment to complete. We are pushing forward as fast as possible with the care and attention the game deserves. As a team, a company and a group of passionate individuals we are committed to making the greatest D&D computer game possible.
Producer - Bioware - NWN
Source: GameFan Online
December 16th, 1999
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