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The Blades of Netheril (inc. enhanced AL1, 2 & 3)

LukeScullLukeScull Member Posts: 4
edited July 18 in NWN:EE Modules
Hi gang,

I used to go by the community name "Alazander." Some of you may remember my NWN series from way back: AL1: Siege of Shadowdale, AL2: Crimson Tides of Tethyr, and AL3: Tyrants of the Moonsea. The last began life as a Premium Module but was cut short and released for free when Atari pulled the plug on the Premium Module program. It was my desire to finish the series with a fourth module, The Blades of Netheril. Sadly, the demands of real life and my professional work with Ossian Studios scuppered those plans.

I'm excited by the upcoming NWN:EE and intend to update the AL series to work with the new game. However, I've also been tossing around the idea of giving my modules an overhaul: expanding and rewriting dialogue to include more options and skill checks, re-balancing combat, fixing some long outstanding bugs (like the magic golem in the arena in AL3), etc - essentially bringing them all up a professional standard, using the skills and experience I've gained over the 15 years since AL1 was released. (15 years?! That can't be right!)

While I can't promise anything at this stage, the old itch to finish the story with a fourth module has also returned. It would be nice to gauge potential interest in a revised and combined super-campaign, which would include the three previous modules as well as the fourth and concluding new chapter, all released in one package. The campaign would take the PC from level 1 through to epic levels and be roughly OC-sized (50-60 hours), all redesigned and refined to a professional standard.

Right now I'm busy with two novels and an unannounced CRPG project, so a fully realized campaign like this is several years away. I am however hyped for Beamdog's latest release and I wanted to share my enthusiasm with my fellow builders and community veterans who might remember my work from back in the day. I look forward to checking out some of the great creations you guys come up with over the coming months. :smiley:

Post edited by LukeScull on
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Comments

  • AtrophiedericAtrophiederic Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 122
    @LukeScull,
    I never played those mods, though I do remember them. Now with the EE, I am slowly revisiting all of the mods that I should've gone through, and I think I will add yours to the queue. As far as remastering/releasing new content, heck yeah! Even if it takes you years, that's okay! I will happily wait to see what you will do! So, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to the Vault to find the AL series and see what I've been missing!
    And oh, yeah, welcome back! 'Tis a wonderful time to be a NwN enthusiast, yes? :smiley:

    LukeScull
  • MadHatterMadHatter Member Posts: 145
    Wait, our summoning rituals worked? Fantastic!

    A finished AL3 is the thing I’ve wanted most from NWN all these years.

    AtrophiedericGrymlordeLukeScull
  • rashkaerashkae Member Posts: 124
    edited March 2018
    Oh Hell yes!

    AL1 was kind of .... sorry to say, mediocre... (this is not a criticism,, it was certainly amongst the best modules of it's time, but this was way before the NWN module development from anyone really hit it's stride. I especially remember how much I didn't like the ending.

    Crimson Tides, however, was one of my favorite gaming experiences ever. I can't way to return to it.

    AtrophiedericLukeScull
  • LukeScullLukeScull Member Posts: 4
    rashkae said:

    Oh Hell yes!

    AL1 was kind of .... sorry to say, mediocre... (this is not a criticism,, it was certainly amongst the best modules of it's time, but this was way before the NWN module development from anyone really hit it's stride. I especially remember how much I didn't like the ending.

    Crimson Tides, however, was one of my favorite gaming experiences ever. I can't way to return to it.

    No offense taken - it's certainly mediocre by the standards of the better modules released after 2002! I suspect that AL1 would require far more redesign than AL2 & 3 in order meet the level of quality that would be needed in enhancing and finishing the series. That said, it's only a shortish module. Rebuilding it to a professional standard might be just the exercise I need to shake off those toolset cobwebs in preparation for AL4. :smile:

    AtrophiedericJFK
  • filipidocarmofilipidocarmo Member Posts: 4
    WOW! Those are some amazing news! I was 13 years old when I first played Siege of Shadowdale. Crimson Tides of Tethyr are one of the reasons that made me want to learn English. I used to play games like NWN and Baldur's Gate with fan made translations, but had to use a dictionary when I played with modules like yours, since there were no portuguese versions. if you need any help with it, you can count me in. Please keep posting updates!

    Atrophiederic
  • chrismokvackchrismokvack Member Posts: 2
    Sounds great. Looking forward to it. I always wanted to find out about
    what happened to Salidar and that blade

    Or maybe we find out about that in Tyrants of the Moonsea?
    LukeScull said:

    fixing some long outstanding bugs (like the magic golem in the arena in AL3)

    I'm playing Tyrants of Moonsea right now and I'm stuck at the arena. I managed to get past the golem by standing really close to the lodge when I destroyed it, but after the next fight with the minotaur it doesn't seem to matter where I stand, the dialogue after the fight just won't start. Is there any workaround for this? This module is awesome and I really want to continue.

    AtrophiedericLukeScull
  • filipidocarmofilipidocarmo Member Posts: 4
    edited March 2018

    I'm playing Tyrants of Moonsea right now and I'm stuck at the arena. I managed to get past the golem by standing really close to the lodge when I destroyed it, but after the next fight with the minotaur it doesn't seem to matter where I stand, the dialogue after the fight just won't start. Is there any workaround for this? This module is awesome and I really want to continue.

    "1) Do everything normally, but during the fight, type DebugMode 1. Then use the period key (.) to bring up the Chooser as a DM. Open the Hillsfar Arena area, and select the Announcer. Jump him to the spot where you'll go at the start of the cutscene. Then Type DebugMode 0.
    2) Finish off the golem, and the cutscene appears to work fine.

    Alazander."

    LukeScull
  • chrismokvackchrismokvack Member Posts: 2
    Thanks but Like I said I'm past the golem and stuck at the minotaur. It tried moving down the announcer but when the cutscene starts he's been teleported right back up. Furthermore I think it's the lord of Hillsfar (whatever his name was I forgot) who is supposed to initiate the dialogue, because he runs away when the cutscene starts much like the announcer did in the previous cutscene. The problem is he isn't there during the fight so I can't move him down with DM client during the fight, and when the cutscene starts I cannot access the console.

    Guess this is getting off-topic by the way, sorry about that.

  • JFKJFK Member Posts: 177
    Awesome news! I especially would love to see an update for Siege of Shadowdale. There seems to be a bit of a dearth of content in that specific area, really. Love me some Old Skull Inn and promontory, some Toad Knoll, et al.
    Thanks for stoking the fires again, Luke! And thanks for all your contributions to the NWN community.

    Of course you are remembered. ;)

    -JFK

  • AndarianAndarian Member Posts: 157
    edited May 2018
    @LukeScull Alazander, a heads-up: Someone using the handle "Rawkinrex" has posted Crimson Tides of Tethyr to Steam:

    https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1367409609

    I wanted to let you know in case this was done without your knowledge or permission.

    EDIT: It's not just CToT. It's the whole series. Here are the links for AL1 and AL3:

    https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1367386967
    https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1367445263

    Post edited by Andarian on
    AtrophiedericLukeScull
  • AtrophiedericAtrophiederic Member, Mobile Tester Posts: 122
    Looks like those are all down now. And I don't see any other entries from that Rawkinrex fellow.

  • LukeScullLukeScull Member Posts: 4
    Andarian said:

    @LukeScull Alazander, a heads-up: Someone using the handle "Rawkinrex" has posted Crimson Tides of Tethyr to Steam:

    https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1367409609

    I wanted to let you know in case this was done without your knowledge or permission.

    EDIT: It's not just CToT. It's the whole series. Here are the links for AL1 and AL3:

    https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1367386967
    https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1367445263

    Thanks, Andarian. They do indeed appear to have been taken down. I don't know what the legalities are regarding sharing freely available modules on different platforms, if one isn't the creator? Personally I'd prefer folk to ask first.

    On a slightly different note, I'm currently reviewing every Forgotten Realms novel in published order on my blog. Fans might want to check it out.

    http://www.lukescull.com/

    Andarian
  • AndarianAndarian Member Posts: 157
    edited May 2018
    Hi Luke! Sorry for the delayed response; the last few weeks have been a bit hectic. Good to see you, and welcome back! I'm looking forward to your new work.

    My understanding regarding others sharing your work is that as the author, it's your call to allow that or not. They're supposed to get your permission to re-host it. (Personally, I don't even let the Vault host my module files; my page there links to my website for those.) There aren't any legal consequences that I know of unless you choose to pursue them.

    Beamdog's posted guidelines for the NWN Workshop on Steam, which I think does a good job of clarifying things:
    https://steamcommunity.com/workshop/discussions/18446744073709551615/1694920442949737048/?appid=704450

    LukeScull
  • LathspellguestLathspellguest Member Posts: 60
    This was my favorite mod series by a long shot, and I'd love to see them updated (and concluded!).

    AtrophiedericLukeScull
  • MatthieuMatthieu Member Posts: 372
    Fantastic, I was just talking of this elsewhere.

  • IseweinIsewein Member Posts: 118
    I can't believe I missed this! Now that we have DoD EE, maybe there is hope Beamdog would consider to hire Alazander to do Blades of Netheril as a true Premium Module? That'd be a dream of over a decade come true! These modules remain quite unique in the NWN community for their meticulous approach to Realmslore.

    Andarian
  • MatthieuMatthieu Member Posts: 372
    I believe they already said DoD would be the only community module going full premium.

    But yes, we can dream we'll have a nice surprise.

  • carlhcarlh Member Posts: 1
    Hope no-one minds if I throw another request for help in this thread, this time with AL2: Crimson Tides of Tethyr in NWN:EE. Hoping to finish this mod soon... just, you know, in case there are any developments with the rest of the series :)

    I've contacted Luke about this problem already; he was great but couldn't recall enough to help. In case anyone else can, here's the problem:

    In Suldanessellar, I've completed Against the Giants and handed the spell component to the Mage. I'm now supposed to relay the new of my attempted assassination by a noble family to Queen Ellesime. I can't find her, unfortunately. Lilura's walkthrough says that I should bump in to Levantes when I go to the upstairs rooms in the palace, but I can't find him and the doors are all locked. I've tried going back a save and re-entering without result. Did this ever come up before, and could you suggest somewhere to look for a solution (even if it's just kick-starting the appropriate cutscene from the command line - I'm on Mac so can't open the mod in the editor). 

    If anyone can suggest a way to get myself around what I suspect is a script that's had a little emotional breakdown, I'd be very grateful!

    Really looking forward to any results that might come from Luke looking at these classics again!

  • poxeclipsepoxeclipse Member Posts: 1
    I got this forums account for the express purpose of letting you know that your modules were some of the best! I didn't find them in my search on the Steam Workshop. I am here to encourage you and lightly beg for that conclusion!

    Andarian
  • AndarianAndarian Member Posts: 157
    edited March 16
    poxeclipse wrote: »
    I got this forums account for the express purpose of letting you know that your modules were some of the best! I didn't find them in my search on the Steam Workshop. I am here to encourage you and lightly beg for that conclusion!

    I heartily second the interest in AL4! Regarding the previous modules, though: they can be downloaded and installed from the Neverwinter Vault, and played in any installation of NWN:EE (including Steam). They can be found here:

    AL1 - Seige of Shadowdale
    AL2 - Crimson Tides of Tethyr
    AL3 - Tyrants of the Moonsea

    Everyone: PLEASE do not assume that modules for NWN:EE are only available on the Steam Workshop! Nearly all of the great classics from the golden age of NWN (as well as some new ones), have been preserved, and are still available, on the Neverwinter Vault. The Enhanced Edition was designed for backward compatibility, which means that every one of these hundreds of high-quality adventures will play in NWN:EE. All you need to do is install them into your Documents/Neverwinter Nights folder. If anyone has trouble with how to do this, please feel free to ask on the forums. There are plenty of us who would be glad to help.

    A few of the classic NWN mods have been ported to Steam, but not many. And it isn't necessary to play them. The only benefit to a Steam port is that players get to install mods with a single click, instead of spending a few simple minutes downloading and copying files. I recognize the value in trying to make things easier for players, but porting a mod to Steam's format isn't easy -- especially if it's a complex one that uses a lot of custom content that the author may need to try to get permission to re-release on another site. Speaking personally it's on my to-do list, but like other mod authors I'm very busy with other projects, and I know Luke is as well.

    megamike15IseweinJFK
  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,763
    a part of me wishes people would just make installers like adem miller did for his trilogy and the original version of darkness over daggerford.

  • AndarianAndarian Member Posts: 157
    megamike15 wrote: »
    a part of me wishes people would just make installers like adem miller did for his trilogy and the original version of darkness over daggerford.

    That's not very difficult to do if people really want it, but I was under the impression that executable installers were somewhat frowned on in the NWN community. I'm also not sure it solves the problem of people expecting mods to all be on Steam. Unless Steam allows the option of listing an installer that will pull components directly from the Vault? If it did/does that would make things a lot easier (see my comments here as well).

    Isewein
  • ByTheSwordByTheSword Member Posts: 9
    I would love to see AL4 The Blades of Netheril made. I have played all of the other AL adventures and I loved them. However I never finished AL3 Tyrants Of The Moonsea because the Arena cutscene would never progress. If you do any one thing Lukescull, please fix that so I can complete your adventure.

    Isewein
  • trebuszętrebuszę Member Posts: 5
    So i believe... it never gonna happen? See no updates :(

    AL series was my favourite. It has the d&d quality i like the most and really good writings, unlike many other sloppy modules :P



  • rashkaerashkae Member Posts: 124
    Andarian wrote: »
    megamike15 wrote: »
    a part of me wishes people would just make installers like adem miller did for his trilogy and the original version of darkness over daggerford.

    That's not very difficult to do if people really want it, but I was under the impression that executable installers were somewhat frowned on in the NWN community. I'm also not sure it solves the problem of people expecting mods to all be on Steam. Unless Steam allows the option of listing an installer that will pull components directly from the Vault? If it did/does that would make things a lot easier (see my comments here as well).

    Executable installers I can live without.. But projects should, where possible, (and in most cases, it would be,) be delivered in a all in one... Download this zip. (or exe,) and extract the contents to the right folder, job done.

    We can make exceptions for *very* common shared resources, (i'm thinking specifically of CEP, for example).. but having to find and download a doze dependencies to install a module is going to be a serious barrier of entry.. (Now I'm talking about Aielund.)

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