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[Mod In Progress] Black Hearts

AWizardDidItAWizardDidIt Member Posts: 164
edited July 11 in BG:EE Mods
I'm posting to share some work on a mod I've been working on for the past few months.

What started out as a first time experiment poking at Baldur's Gate modding and learning the ins and outs of it has grown into a fairly large scale quest mod for Baldur's Gate 1. My initial goal was to find a way to integrate the battles from the Black Pits adventure into the main campaign of BG1, then developed into me wanting to do so in a way that felt natural and not as just a string of arena fights. This idea kept growing into a much larger project as I learned to do more with modding and I began to create new items, areas, quests, and (non party) npcs. I began to call the project Black Hearts.

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At the center of this mod is Illasera the Quick, one of the Five in TOB who was quickly dispatched in that campaign. I thought it might be nice to give her meeting a bit more importance by fleshing her out, creating a character you learn about and like or hate, making your eventual confrontation with her (hopefully) a bit more meaningful as a result. She's a dark character, intensely pragmatic and with an often cruel wit, but with a few redeeming qualities as well. While she is a non-party character, she's going to have over a thousand lines of dialogue and should be more fleshed out than most full npc mods. You begin working with her to hunt down bounties in the region, but this grows to something more involved that centers around a sect of Red Wizards who are assisting the Iron Throne in their goals and a mysterious figure overseeing the events of the region.

The meat of the mod still mostly involves facing repurposed fights from the Black Pits module, but often with little twists or extra things thrown in to make them more interesting.

So far the mod is about 60-70% content complete. There's quite a lot more work to go, but my planned feature list includes:
- 10 new areas (a few repurposed maps, but 5-6 created from non-infinity engine maps)
- two dozen-ish new magical items
- A questline that spans about 20 parts
- Several in-depth non-party npcs that play major and minor roles in the questline
- Lots of party banter and interactions within the questline!

I'll probably post more in this thread to show new progress and I hope to have something ready to share before too long!

Post edited by AWizardDidIt on
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Comments

  • EndarireEndarire Member Posts: 747
    Seeing this update is encouraging!

    I have 2 major requests for this mod for its initial release.

    1: Include native EET compatibility. Ask the people on Gibberlings3 as prudent for aid.

    2: Include Orange Ioun Stones for +1 caster level. This is one item that seems easy to make/include but one that I've not been able to use in any D&D video game yet!

    Thankee!

  • AWizardDidItAWizardDidIt Member Posts: 164
    @Endarire

    1. EET compatibility is definitely something I would like to do. Probably will be one of the last things I visit before I look to Release it.

    2. That seems like a great idea for a new magic item and definitely within the scope of magic items I want for the mod. I *hate* when mods introduce OP gear and have specifically been making gear that's less god-tier and more trying to make items that are lesser used in BG or have interesting/unique effects.

  • LavaDelVortelLavaDelVortel Member Posts: 2,005
    It looks impressive and I am quite excited that I'll be able to play a mod I have nothing to do with. Something new, something fresh, and something with stories and details I do not know. I'll happily play it once it's released :)

    StummvonBordwehr
  • IseweinIsewein Member Posts: 403
    Another proper quest mod in the making, eh? Looks great. I always appreciate some fleshing out for ToB characters.

    StummvonBordwehr
  • EndarireEndarire Member Posts: 747
    @AWizardDidIt
    Thankee! I realized that +1 caster level is most appropriate for low levels when the +1 CL matters a lot. Once in BG2, that +1 CL matters much less.

    (I also like the notion of integrating the Black Pits' fights into the main BG story. Baeloth is my favorite NPC! Alleluia!)

  • GiovanskiGiovanski Member Posts: 12
    @AWizardDidIt
    Looks incredible. Very eager to see it released.

    @Endarire
    You mean... this thing? B)
    n26d7x38ao89.png

    StummvonBordwehr
  • EndarireEndarire Member Posts: 747
    @Giovanski That is the first I've seen of that item! Where is it normally?

    I'd also like an Orange Ioun Stone equippable by all classes, like the Pale Green Ioun Stone in BG2EE.

  • AWizardDidItAWizardDidIt Member Posts: 164
    @Endarire

    Well, as soon as my mod's ready, you'll be able to grab a non-class restricted Orange Ioun Stone from an enemy nearish to the end of the questline :)

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    StummvonBordwehr
  • EndarireEndarire Member Posts: 747
    edited July 13
    Thankee!

    The Bright Orange Ioun Stone linked above is from the Angel's Made in Heaven Item Pack mod.

    And to clarify, the Orange Ioun Stone is +1 caster level to all classes, yea even Rangers, Paladins, Bards, Shamen, Clerics, Druids, and obscure kits that can cast.

  • LavaDelVortelLavaDelVortel Member Posts: 2,005
    BTW, would you make the portraits optional? While I understand many people like them, these days I prefer to stick to the original game design, where only NPCs and sometimes really crucial/main characters have portraits (like Irenicus etc.)

    Plus, if I were to see portraits, I would rather see original ones (like the ToB Illasera) rather than those introduced in mods. Illasera's portrait you use was made by Artastrophe and was designed as a part of PaintBG portrait mod, not as a standalone thing. They do not blend in well with original portraits and such a mix always felt weird... that's also why I think I prefer to keep quest mods portrait-less or minimalize a number of portraits.

  • AWizardDidItAWizardDidIt Member Posts: 164
    I've always used the Artastrophe mod for Illasera in my recent BG playthroughs, so it's just kind of ingrained in my head that she should look like that and I used it while I was making the mod. But I also want to be very careful about involving other creator's content so unless Artastrophe has specifically said somewhere that they don't mind these portraits being used in mods, I'm going to have to remove it for the final release and probably revert back to her TOB portrait (which I'll probably be touching up in photoshop). Either way, I'll def think about making it a choice to use the TOB portrait during install.

    As for other npcs, only a few of them have portraits and those are the more major ones and I've been toying with the idea of doing non-party romances for them. A few of those portraits I created myself, so I'm kind of proud of the work I did and want to include them. I promise it won't be too immersion breaking!

  • EndarireEndarire Member Posts: 747
    Did you use a unique prefix for all your files (AW, DJ, etc. for KPWizar1.xxx, etc.) so as to ensure compatibility with other mods?

  • LavaDelVortelLavaDelVortel Member Posts: 2,005
    @AWizardDidIt - just to let you know: I really think you're doing a great job and that portrait thing would only (in my opinion) make your work better :) I can't wait to see your mod released.
    Cheers!

  • tangelo1023tangelo1023 Member Posts: 6
    This mod sounds amazing.

  • IseweinIsewein Member Posts: 403
    I love the pub scenes in BG1 NPC project; it's nice to take a rest from adventuring for a while. Looking forward!

  • UlkeshUlkesh Member Posts: 31
    edited July 20
    I'm really really curious of what you're cooking. I wonder if you added some meaningful (And rewarding) evil options :P

    Post edited by Ulkesh on
  • ZoltanavrZoltanavr Member Posts: 16
    I'm looking forward to get this mod released and play it in my next playthough.

  • EndarireEndarire Member Posts: 747
    @AWizardDidIt
    I have plans for other items that I would like included in this mod or/and other mods. How receptive are you to implementing more items suitable for sometime in BG1?

    Thankee!

  • AWizardDidItAWizardDidIt Member Posts: 164
    edited July 21
    @Ulkesh
    There are selfish and aggressive options in dialogue and you can kill some npcs along the way if you feel like it and get some extra items for doing so, with the trade off being that they aren't around to help or talk to you later. Otherwise, the whole questline is pretty morally agnostic. I didn't really approach it with "Good" or "Evil" in mind. Everyone knows "Law" vs "Chaos" is where it's at B)

    @Endarire
    Feel free to give me item suggestions if you'd like! I don't have all my items laid out beforehand; my process so far has been taking a fight and then just sort of thinking what type of magical item might make sense for it and then scouting around the item effects in NI to see if I can't do something fun. If your suggestion seems neat to me and I can figure out a way to make the item, I'll def throw it in.

    ZoltanavrUlkeshbonewhiteglory
  • ShirakShirak Member Posts: 62
    This mod is shaping up really well! Looking forward to playing it in my next trilogy run!

    StummvonBordwehr
  • EndarireEndarire Member Posts: 747
    @AWizardDidIt
    Apologies for the delay. I've been working on other things, and I'm expecting to start a new employment position next week. (It's seasonal for 11 days.) Mid-to-late August at soonest is when I can give you the proper item descriptions.

    Thankee!

  • UlkeshUlkesh Member Posts: 31
    I play the Enhanced Edition, but I strongly dislike SoD. Please, do not make it a "requisite" for playing your mod.

    Also, do you think you will release the mod for BGT too?

  • AWizardDidItAWizardDidIt Member Posts: 164
    edited August 9
    @Ulkesh
    Oh, I would never require SoD. The epilogue component would be 1.) Optional and 2.) Would be present in *either* SoD or in post game BG1 via the Endless BG1 mod so you could play it through that mod instead of SoD if you so wished.

    For BGT, I am a first time modder and have been taking advantage of a lot of shortcuts the EE versions of the game have in terms of modding. I unfortunately don't see myself being very motivated to do the work needed to backport it into BGT so I'd say it's extremely unlikely to get a BGT version, at least from me.

    UlkeshBrokenkatana
  • EndarireEndarire Member Posts: 747
    @AWizardDidIt
    Next week is the soonest I can work in earnest on the item proposals for this mod. Thankee for your patience!

  • ThrasymachusThrasymachus Member Posts: 708
    This looks quite intriguing. I'm looking forward to trying it out once I play BG again and it's available!

    I like SoD and so am pleased that there will be some additional content for it. (The main thing I dislike about SoD is that, like ToB, there is little mod material for it.)

    StummvonBordwehr
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