Along with Knights of the Old Republic, RPGFan also was able to speak with Bioware about their new expansion for Neverwinter Nights, Shadows of Undrentide. The expansion includes over 50 new spells as well as the addition of five prestige classes, including the Blackguard, who graces the cover.
Although the expansion features a new single player campaign, Bioware has included a slew of new options for both players and module creators. Players now have the Hand of Mystra for the single player campaign, which functions like the Stone of Recall in the first game, but requires components and is only available in the first chapter. Bioware has also included cut scenes with the in-game engine and have given module creators scripts to make their own sequences.
Druids, Rangers, and Barbarians now have the option to talk to animals, and this opens a slew of new quests in Bioware's own campaign. Players may also completely control any henchman's inventory. Henchmen also approach and talk to you, ala your love interest in Baldur's Gate 2. Also included are three new tilesets as well as new placements in old tilesets to make them look different.
One question that RPGFan had for Bioware was if the option to give up levels for Prestige classes was available for the Blackguard, an option in the paper and pen D&D. Sadly, Bioware has not included this option, nor have they included rules found in the Epic-Level handbook, allowing players to move above level 20. Bioware has also yet to announce if they are bringing Jeremy Soule back to compose the soundtrack for SoE.
Bioware also announced another new expansion for Neverwinter Nights, Hordes of the Underdark. Bioware has yet to release details. Bioware has decided to expand on the first Neverwinter Nights and has not announced a NWN2. Shadows of Undrentide is slated for a June release by Atari. Be sure to check out the latest available screenshots linked below.