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Topic: Proposed mods to NWN Rhun module


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Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 26-Nov-15, 01:52:40
Been a while, and I'm back to fiddling with the Rhun NWN module. Been making some major updates (added a brand new self-scripted forge, added persistent storage to many (but not yet all) of the Guilds and subraces...and lots of other mixes and fixes.

AND.....I have a server status web page now too.

http://50.83.185.73

It updates every 6 seconds, so it's almost real time feedback. Feel free to join me if you care to....

Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 01-Dec-10, 02:58:33
New release of Fox Spells available.

Version: 01 Dec 2010

Grab it here:
http://social.bioware.com/project/3122/

Problems?
Questions?
Suggestions?
Ask.

Good night :-)

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Nov-10, 16:08:52
I am finishing to polish some things before I make the next release -- planned for: 15 December 2010.
It will be available at my project page on the bioware social forum.


The blasted multi-summons feature had a lot of surprises in store for me.

You have no idea of the problems who can generate the casting of just two "interlocking" summons.
Oh the horrors I witnessed! Suddenly there was misbehaving code everywhere. Bugs everywhere. Bunnies hopping everywhere.
And a lone fox trying to save the world.

The solution made me rewrite half the Dispel System.

I wish I will not have to do it again -- that system is a beast of untold complexity.

But the world is saved :-)


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 01-Nov-10, 23:44:38
Change of subject:

The problem of the floating weapons in NWN...

Between the "Player's Hand Book" and the "Magic of Faerun" books,
three spells exist who create a floating weapon.

These are:
- Shelgarn's Persistent Blade (Magic of Faerun)
- Mordenkainen's Sword (Player's Hand Book)
- Black Blade of Disaster (Magic of Faerun)

Different spell levels, but very similar mechanics.
For starters, the weapon you get to see is not a weapon. It is a spell
who manifests in form of weapon.
The "weapon" has only 1 attack per round, can not be harmed by
pshysical damage, and only a select group of spells might affect them.
As far as NWN goes, these spells are only the dispellers:
- Lesser Dispel
- Dispel Magic
- Greater Dispelling
- Mordenkainen's Disjunction

^^ because these spells are meant to disrupt other spells.
And those "weapons" _are_ spells. The weapons are not even supposed
to be blessed or cursed by other spells. You could not cast Haste on
them to give them another attack per round. You may not cast Magic
Armor on them to increase their AC. They have no meaning for these
things, because they are not actual objects to begin.

NWN has always used the wrong approach to implement these weapon spells.
Mordenkainen's Sword is not a floating sword... but it is a Helmed
Horror armed with a flaming sword. And it may be blessed/cursed by
spells.

Shelgarn's Persistent Blade is a floating weapon, but it is
implemented like an invisible ninja character wielding such weapon.
Again, it may be blessed/cursed by spells. It may even be "killed"
by physical damage.

The Black Blade of Disaster was the closest to the D&D counterpart.
Though it is still an invisible ninja wielding the weapon, it may at
least not be harmed in any way. Only dispel magic would affect it.
And in this regard they did it wrong, because if a Mordenkainen's
Disjunction is cast at it, the blade self-unsummons.
It will do so regardless of the caster level of the spellcaster who
has cast the dispel magic. So even a cheap scroll cast by a level 1
Wizard would _surely_ remove a Black Blade of Disaster spawned by a
level 40 epic Wizard.
As for the other 3 dispel magic spells, they are not sensed by the
blade directly. In their case they can dispel the blade only if a
proper dispel-check is passed.

Add to it that the Shelgarn's Peristent Blade and the Black Blade of
Disaster will reveal what they truly are if you walk around and listen
to their footsteps (or even look at the puffs of smoke raised by their
steps) -- Haha.

Final icing of the cake: Black Blade of Disaster requires that you
maintain the concentration. if you do anything that makes you brain
busy (fight, run, open a lock, cast a spell...), the Black Blade does
self-unsummon.
This is probably reminiscent of the original D&D spell, who says that
the caster directs the blade to attack a target. The blade is like a
puppet that the caster must direct, you see.

Of course in NWN there is no way to implement this.
I believe they also used the no-cast thing to prevent a player
spellcaster from overpowering his Black Blade of Disaster by casting
enhancing spells on it (Haste, Dark Fire, Magic Weapon, Keen Edge...).
But they have bugged this limitation. It is based on a check run every
6 seconds. If you can cast something between 2 checks, the Black Blade
will not notice it.
And in any case, the limitation only applies to the Master of the
blade. If his friend spellcaster casts a spell directly on the blade,
the blade does not self-unsummon.

Conclusion: what a mess!



Now...
I can put order in all this. I have been experimenting in the last
hours. And I can make these spells very close to what their D&D
counterpart is, which is far away from what you are used to see in
NWN.
I just am not sure if I should change all them three.
Because I want diversity. Diversity is the way to ensure that a lower
level spell remains useful after you gain access to a higher level
spell.
If the Shelgarn's Persistent Blade and the Black Blade of Disaster
were as similar as D&D dictates, you would no longer use the Persistent
Blade. Why would you? The Black Blade is so much better in all aspects.
So I want to keep them different.

The Shelgarn's Persistent Blade will remain exactly as it is in
Fox Spells. A real Dagger item summoned through magic. It may be
harmed, killed (she will return), dispelled, blessed and cursed.

The Mordenkainen's Sword remains as it is in Fox Spells. just a
regular Summoned Associate armed with a flaming greatsword.


But the Black Blade of Disaster is changed completely.
Here is its new spell description:

-------------------------------------------------->>>>>
Caster Level(s): Wizard / Sorcerer 9
Innate Level: 9
School: Conjuration
Descriptor(s):
Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
Range: Short
Area of Effect / Target: Point
Duration: 1 Round / Level
Additional Counter Spells:
Save: None
Spell Resistance: (Special)

The caster conjures a sword-shaped magical force,
resembling a black greatsword, which fights at her
side. The blade is barely physical and may not be
harmed, dismissed or banished, but it can be affected
by dispel magic. The greatsword receives an attack
bonus of 20 plus an enhancement bonus to attack and
damage equal to the caster's relevant ability modifier.
At each combat round the blade may attack one time.
Upon striking a target for the first time a Spell
Resistance check is given to it. If the target resists
the spell the black blade is dissolved, otherwise 1d6
points of magical damage are dealt.

Spell Focus feats in Conjuration school improve the
magical damage as follow:
- Spell Fous: +1d6 damage
- Greater Spell Fous: +1d6 damage
- Epic Spell Fous: +1d6 damage
<<<<<--------------------------------------------------

First thing to notice, the concentration check is gone.
The caster is free to cast more spells while the blade is out.
The duration is fairly short: a maximum of 40 rounds -- 80 rounds
if extended (that makes a maximum of 8 minutes real-time, if
you are a level 40 spellcaster).
Truth be told 8 minutes can be an infinite time if you find
yourself pitted against this foe and you lack the means to defeat
or defend against it.
In fact the sword is not a sword to begin. It is a "spell".
No agency may harm it (can you harm a spell?). You can only
dispel it -- if you are a mage.
Otherwise you can attempt to resist it the very first time it
strikes you. If you can do that, the sword shall self-unsummon.
Otherwise you are in trouble, because you had your 1 chance to
win and you just missed it. Past the first hit in fact no other
Spell Resistance check is given to you. Your last hope is to have
high enough AC rating to avoid being hit. But that depends on
the spellcaster of the sword.
Read again the description, it talks of an Attack bonus of 20,
plus an enhancement bonus to _attack_ and damage equal to the
spellcaster Relevant ability Modifier.
If the spellcaster is a Wizard with Intelligence 28|9, the
sword acquires a total attack bonus of 20 +9 = 29.
Then in combat the attack roll will be made as usual, so there is
another 1d20 to account for.
Meaning that such a sword could hit a target with an AC rating
value of up to 29 +19 = 48
But of course if the sword rolls the lucky +20 she can hit anything.
Conversely, if she rolls the unlucky +1 she will miss anything.

Notice the damage. Magical type. And 1d6. Read again the description.
It talks of an enhancement bonus to attack and _damage_.
So the actual damage is 1d6 + the caster Relevant Ability Modifier.
Using the Wizard of the above example, the damage would be 1d6+9.

Spell Focus feats in Conjuration school will add 1d6 more damage
each. If the Wizard in the example climbed up to the feat
Epic Spell Focus (Conjuration), his Black Blade of Disaster would
output a damage of 4d6+9. Which is a lot. And it is even more of a
lot if you consider that it is magical damage type. Your costly armor
and your precious damage reduction feats shall be useless.

Oh. And rules are rules. Full metamagic may apply to this spell.
So you may empower and maximize it. Do your math, folks.

Note, however, that the weapon can attack only one time per round.
This is a limitation I impose on it. Otherwise it is too powerful.
Yet its Character Sheet will state 3 attacks per round.
Do not believe it. That info is not being correctly updated by the
engine. And I can not do a thing for it.

Pay attention.
Some spells exist who are disruptive against Summoned Associates.
These are "Dismissal", "Banishment" and "Word of Faith".
I make them NOT work against the Black Blade. Because the Black Blade is
not a Summoned Associate. Though it acts as one, it is ultimately a
"spell".
However, because she acts as a Summoned Associate I make it count
towards the limit of Summoned Associates you can have.

The blade no longer has the "Power Attack" and "Knockdown" feats.
But I give her the Blind-Fight feat, and bless her with True Seeing.
The former is to allow the blade to employ her full attack roll versus a
concealed opponent.
The latter is to allow the black blade to find and fight even a hidden
creature.

The Black Blade of Disaster no longer opens a planar rift upon her
arrival.
As well, the Black Blade may no longer insta-kill a target.
The original NWN black blade would do it occasionally. I have removed
this power from her.

A final note is for the appearance of the Black Blade of Disaster.
First, it is made bigger. Now it will stand out better on the battlefield.
Second, I have made it so much closer to the weapon displayed in the
portrait.
And third, the greatsword no longer has legs nor feet to footstep with
Now the illusion of a floating unmanned weapon is perfect :-)


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 01-Nov-10, 23:33:58
A pity.
Yes the engine is quite restrictive.
But with a bit of imagination you can still accomodate many things presumed impossible by most.

And then there is this new "tool" being made, which is opening up lots of possibilities.

What can I say?
If you want a really moddable engine, you may try that of Dungeon Siege II.
That engine is moddable in every aspect, as far as I know. You can even write your own DLL to extend its functionality -- go figure.

The learning curve is a bit steep, though.
But such is the price to pay for flexibility.

Ease of use and Power at disposal are inversely proportional, for there is no "magic" in programming.

Reflect on this:
If you do not have to take care of something, then someone else is taking care of it for you -- and surely it is doing so in a way that does not leave all doors open.

Said another way:
The more easy it is, the more the automations.
The more the automations, the less the flexibility.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 01-Nov-10, 19:40:31
Primarily for three reasons:

1. I am intimidated by the daunting task. You're talking YEARS to have even a barely working product in my estimation. That's quite a commitment.

2. The NWN game engine is simply far too restrictive. Many of the features I would wish to incorporate you would have to fight against the game engine in hopes of accomplishing them. The game engine should be your aid not your enemy.

3. The lack of players to appreciate the effort and/or provide feedback. It's simply not worth the herculean effort if I am the only one who is going to appreciate my efforts.


Combine those three together and you have a pretty good summary of my answer. A close 4th reason would be that I would be doing this utterly on my own since no others appear to share my vision for what would make a good PW module. That means I would either have to work with others who have vastly differing opinions/agendas OR I would have to work alone. Neither of those alternatives is very attractive.

The combination of these reasons means the project is likely doomed to failure before it would ever start. Therefore, I have chosen instead to tweak existing modules. Admittedly a huge compromise, but hell, life is compromise.

I chatted friday night with an ex-DM for one of the long-lived NWN PW servers (Legends of Rhun) and was informed of a potential exploit I have never encountered or thought of before. I'm eager to test that out. Therefore, I am running Rhun again (if anyone cares). Even with my handicapped version of Rhun, I've advanced my brand new character to level 26 after only about 12 hours of play time. It's amazing what you can do when you get to know your way around that module. And I haven't even found the potential exploit he talked about yet.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 31-Oct-10, 15:51:33
Hello NOva.


Why you do not design your own module?
(I can help with the scripting part -- I can even teach you scripting if you are interested)


Automations are a nice thing, but if they do not exist, someone has to create them.
Look at the positive side: you create them once. Then you reuse them unlimited times.

Want to receive XP for talking with NPC? It can be done.
The more you progress through a conversation the more XP you receive. Just because you are talking.
Conversation "nodes" (lines to speak) can also be revelaed or hidden at run-time, based on whatever criteria you wish.
So... even finding a conversation node who hints to a quest you can take (or plain gives you said quest) can be a good excuse to award XP.
Do you have high enough Charisma? Then the pretty barmaid in distress may ask for your help with her troubled boyfriend.
Have you killed 100 goblins in all your life? Then the useless beggar you never cared to talk with before may now recount an interesting tale of a treasure hidden deep in the goblin mountains.

XP can be awarded to Rogue types for opening locked chests. Or also for each item they take from a chest.
But if the character is no Rogue, then he is stealing... you could punish him by changing his alignment.

Pickpocketing can also be rewarded with XP.

Want XP for exploring the world?
Just remember which areas have been entered by a PC. At every new Area, you give him 100 XP.

Want to reward a PC for being a great explorer?
One thing is to walk through an area, and one other thing is to explore its most remote corners.
Just place a Trigger in all your "strategic spots". Once the PC steps in a trigger, you remember it.
If he steps in them all, you award XP for having been everywhere in the area.

Want to award XP for casting spells, any spell, or just some type of spells?
There is a handy place to script this: the PreSpellCastHook code.
It is a script shared by all spellscripts. As a spell is cast, taht script is executed as well... along with any code in it.
Cast a spell --> +1 XP :-)

Want to award XP for being a "packrat"? (I will never understand why they call it packrat).
Everytime you acquire or unacquire an item, a script is executed. Place your code in there.

Want to reward XP for being the greatest weapon seller of all times?
Again, everytime something is sold to a shop, a script is informed of it.
Place you code in there. If it is a weapon, increment a counter you keep somewhere.
At specific breakpoints, you award XP.

Want to award XP for being the greatest potion drinker ever?
Like before. when you use an item, a script is informed of it.
just place you code in there. If it was a potion, keep note of it.
At specific breakpoints, award XP.


All these things require that you keep note of them somewhere.
This could be a database.
Or it could also be a specific little item that you give to your players as they join the Module.
Make the item cursed, so it can not be lost. Make it weightless and 1x1 square in size, so it will not rob the inventory space.
In return this item can be a permanent receptacle for all kind of data you wish to store on it.
The good side of it is that the item is physically tied to the Player Character file. It will survive server resets and all kinds of disasters, except the loss of the player file (of course).


Want to make your players start totally naked and force them to play and learn how to craft their items, from clothes to weapons, potions and stuff?

First you will need a good excuse to justify this need.
I will give you a start for an interesting plot. You just elaborate and expand on it:


-------------------------------------------------->>>>>
The prohibited dream of every demon and devil has come true.
They have invaded in mass the Prime Material Plane.
How they managed to do so, is everybody guess.
Celestial entities do not dare leave the Heavens to move war on demons and devils.
First they have to find out how to do it, anyway. Nobody knowns. Only devils and demons know.
Long gone are the times were these visitors could only stay on our Plane for a limited time.
Looks like they have found a way to make their stay permanent.

The Abyss and the Nine Hells are nearly emptied, as every demon and devil seems to have taken home into our world... where they can tap on powers inaccesible from their home planes.

The Prime Material Plane is totally under the control of demons and devils.
Their Blood War continues raging here. Demons against devils against demons...

In the chaos, the human race and all other races of the civilized world are enslaved by either faction.
They share poverty, misery, and 4 more things: no weapons, no armors, no spells, no magical items.

Any thing who could be used against devils and demons has been destroyed, confiscated, removed, prohibited, deemed "outlaw".
Nobody can arm himself. No mage dares cast spells in front of anybody, lest he is killed for threatening the masters.

Wizards and Sorcerers conceal their powers.
Paladins are nearly extinguished. They were the first to step up and fight. But what Paladins remain today, have long turned into a Blackguard at the servide of the masters. Those who did not, are denizens of hell. Though some say that a few dead paladins were wrestled from hell and brought into the heavens by some deity. Rumors, of course...
Clerics were decimated in the Invasion War, in spite of their power. What few of them remain either hides, or is at the service of the masters.

Nobody can train in the arts of war.
Everybody must serve and obey.

But in the shadows several small rebel movements are organizing.
The masters are constantly on the alert for them.

Many know the lost arts of forging and crafting, but nobody will teach them -- out of terror of the masters.
<<<<<--------------------------------------------------


In this world nobody has nothing of value.
Nobody has nothing to sell but vegetables, rocks, and tools for the everyday life.
The masters are the law.
The greatest weapon you can find is a junky dagger or short sword.
The best protection for your body are useless rags.
People are allowed to live their lives, in their towns, in their homes. But always they are watched by the masters.
At the first false move, at the first suspect... people disappear never to return.

Outside of civilizized areas there is a hostile world.
And even in civilized areas life is not guaranteed.
Players will have to learn their skills.
And they will have to craft their stuff in secret. And keep it hidden.
Casting a spell and being witnessed is nearly a death wish.
Walking around in any piece of armor or wielding anything more threatening than a short sword is a sure ticket for hell.

And then there is to discover how the masters could invade our home plane.
Is there a way to undo it?
And was the invasion world-wide? What about the uncharted lands? Are there demons and devils too?
And... would the enigmatic celestials help if they knew how to gain permanent access to our plane?
Are we sure they would help?? Were they not competing with devils and demons for the same reason (power!), after all?

Be careful in choosing your sides.
Be careful in trusting people.
Nobody will want to die in your place.


-fox



------------------------------------------------------------
Change of subject:

Have a look at this link on the bioware forums.

http://social.bioware.com/forum/1/topic/199/index/4932567/1

Someone is being serious about modding the game.
So serious that he is patching the executable in memory as it runs, by rewriting whole portions of it... and in so doing he has de-hardcoded much stuff already.

The project was born for the PRC package. The author says that it is not tied to the PRC, however.
It is only a "medium" to allow the PRC to do its stuff.
But you can ditch the PRC thing and keep the medium to do _your_ stuff. That is the idea behind this "loader" he is coding.

Why you do not participate to the discussion and ask your questions?
He can probably look into the matter and do something concrete about it.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 29-Oct-10, 22:41:50
Almost makes me want to start playing NWN again. I just wish the game had a much better XP system such that the lion's share of your character advancement did not come from killing foes.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-Oct-10, 19:32:30
It is done.

The Multi-Summon system (or simply "Summon" system) is complete in
all aspects.

In the process I also cleanup a lot of cluttering code from the many
summoning spells.
Now everything is handled through 1 function call. Simply feed the
parameters you want, and the system takes care of the rest.

More specifically I have introduced two functions:
- fox_SUMM_SummonCreature() to supercede EffectSummoncreature()
- fox_SUMM_SummonSwarm() to supercede EffectSwarm()

The first is to spawn a single creature. Most summoning spells will
use this.

The second is to define and spawn a swarm of up to 4 creatures.
What is a swarm? The 1st creature is spawned. As she is removed from
game, the 2nd creature is spawned. As she is removed, the 3rd one is
spawned. And finally the 4th.
Each swarm member will spawn where the previous has left.

Swarm chains can be made endless.
If they are set to repeat, once the 4th creature is gone, the 1st one
shall re-spawn. And the loop continues indefinitely, until the spell
expires or is removed by dispel magic.

I support swarms of up to 4 creatures, like the original core function.
But in my case I am forced to keep low. I could support any amount of
creatures in a swarm... but the memory footprint for it would grow
beyond the "safe", and it would proove detrimental for the game performance
after a while.
It is a pity :-( But four is a good number.


--------------------------------------------------
Change of subject:

Thanks to my new swarm toy I can finally make the persistent blade,
"persistent" for real :-)
She is going to be the most annoying summon in the game.

The Level 1 arcane summon Shelgarn's Persistent Blade is the little
sister of the Level 9 arcane summon Black Blade of Disaster.

Everyone knows the Black Blade is invincible.
The only way to get rid of her is to kill her caster, or force him to
cast another spell, or attempt to dispel the blade.
Otherwise there is no way to stop her -- a very displeasing opponent.

But the Persistent Blade?
She shares many traits in common with the Black Blade, but not the
invulnerability. The little Persistent Blade is easily killed.
Too easily, even though she is only a level 1 summon.

I did already enhance the Persistent Blade by granting her several boons
based on the CasterLevel of the spellcaster.
At caster level 40 the Persistent Blade would be boosted quite a lot.
Still the summon remained so frail. And hardly useful against high level
foes.

No more :-)
I have granted her immortality... in a way.
It will be like a phoenix.
If killed, she will return within the next round. As good as new.
She will return no matter what. There will be no end.
The only way to get rid of her is to kill the caster or dispel the blade.

While it remains a very frail summon, it is an opponent who can not be left
unatteded. Because if you do, she turns on you and hits hard.
Just like the Black Blade, the Persistent Blade is given a fearsone
Enhancement Bonus to Attack and Damage.

So... if a foe ignores the Persistent Blade, he is going to be harmed badly
by her. And if he turns on her, he is going to leave _you_ unattended.

Unlike the Black Blade of Disaster, the Persistent Blade will not auto-unsummon
if you cast more spells.

All in all, another great addition from the fox.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Oct-10, 21:25:16
Hello Fox,

Yes and thank you :)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Oct-10, 19:37:26
Hello Albadaran.
All 6 epic spells have always been extraordinary.

Does this answer your question?

-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 25-Oct-10, 19:39:34
So all (and only) epic spells are extraordinary now?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Oct-10, 17:16:34
Here is a composite 4-screenshots to showcase the multi-summon feature:
http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/FoxMultiSummon.jpg


-- Top left:
A Cleric surrounded by 5 Summoned Associates
- Spectre
- Elder Air Elemental
- Balor
- Red Dragon (epic summon)
- Warrior Lord (epic summon)


-- Top right:
Same as before, but with TAB highlight.


-- Bottom left:
The Cleric initiates a Resting.
Three Summoned Associates:
- Spectre
- Elder Air Elemental
- Balor
Are immediately unsummoned, by termination of the spell who evoked them.


-- Bottom right:
The Cleric terminates the Resting.
The two epic Summoned Associates:
- Red Dragon
- Warrior Lord
Are now unsummoned, by termination of the spell who evoked them.
Epic spells are of "Extraordinary" subtype. Extraordinary spells and effects
are only removed at the end of a Resting (if they do not expire sooner, that is).


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Oct-10, 02:47:41
Also available with the __NEXT__ release:

<< Support for multiple Summoned Associates >>

We fully support a number of Summoned Associates.
From 1 to N, where N is whatever limit NWN can handle.

Want to summon your personal zoo? Now you can :-)

Simply set a Module Switch with the maximum amount you wish,
and our systems shall take care of the rest.

Oh, the switch can also be made local for a single spellcaster.
Want to allow your spellcasters to gain the ability to summon
more and more Associates as they gain levels? You can do that too.

The switch can even be modified during play.
Our systems will react to it -- flawlessly.

Another Polished Gem from the fox :-)


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 18-Oct-10, 00:49:01
Haha!
The new release came... and only after it I found the time to
polish something I have been cooking for a while.

So:
Available with the __NEXT__ release will be:
- fully customizable Spell Level Absorption

... a brand new sub-system of my award wining (in my dreams)
Spell Resistance system.

These would be the "Spell Mantles".
But also the "Globes of invulnerability".
And the "Spell Immunity" too.

All three ward types are handled by 1 slick interface.
Another True Gem of engineering from the flawless one.
Commencing ego inflation -- step aside, please.

My Spell Level Absorption, in particular, allows to restrict
a mantle/globe effectiveness by any combo:
- Innate Level
- Spell School
- Racial Type
- Law/Chaos Alignment
- Good/Evil Alignment

The bioware mantles/globes could only be restricted by:
- Innate Level
- Spell School

thus forcing the creation of "generic" wards unfit for any
purpose other than that of a super protection versus
everything.

Also, while the bioware Spell Level Absorption supports a
maximum Innate Level of 9, my Spell Level Absorption goes up
to 126.
Plenty of room to go wild with spells.
And Epic Spells especially, as this field has been barely
scratched by Bioware original design.

With our latest addition, feats (<-- what Epic Spells are)
can now be treated like real spells in every aspect.

Another barrier shattered by the mighty fox!

Hm... soon my ego too will shatter something... my lair!
Better go out for a walk.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 13-Oct-10, 00:12:49
"Whatever" at myself -- haha

For the interested:

New release of Fox Spells coming soon at the link posted down in this thread.
Check in a week at most.

These days I am rearranging things, and working to improve the documentation.
It lacked for far too long -- time to address that.
Six micro bugs fixed in the process, others are prevented.
Some speed optimizations. More ideas coming to mind.
New strokes of unrivaled genius plugged in. Foxness improved. Ego inflating as we speak.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 21-Sep-10, 15:47:19
That person is lead of a project apparently similar to mine.
He began his project only weeks ago. While I did mine years before.

His initial "bash" was more due to his fear that my project could steal attention from his.
As far as I understand, that person is somewhat reknown among the former NWN community.
I, instead, am unknown.

But then he realized that my project is fundamentally different from his -- there would be no competition.
At that point he has changed "tone". He even gave me some credit.

But the "damage" was done all the same.
So as long as his comments are the only ones present, my project is going to be noticed, yes, but _not_ downloaded.
And if the number of downloads does not start to increase, other persons will discard my project as "not worth to download".
It is a vicious circle, you see, based solely on the apparent state of things.

I must say it hurts a little.
But such is the life.
If nobody shows interest in my project, I shall stop developing it.
I can find more rewarding uses for my spare time :-)


-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Sep-10, 13:54:13
People come, people go. That's the dynamics of life, even more so in the virtual world.
Still I understand your feeling of disappointment, fox.
About one week ago I had a look at the social forum at bioware and noticed only one person that responded to your post, rather negatively I'd say.
If those social forums are new, then more people will come. Just have patience and be confident that your work will be noticed. After all it's the quality that counts, not the numbers of people.
But you know all that ofcourse.
As I have no knowledge whatsoever I only can give you my moral support.
Be well, fox!
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Sep-10, 14:22:52
I know how you feel. Had the same experience one year ago when I had worked so hard on my nwn project and Lord Atton's and Novas interest faded away before the project was even finished.
Same probably with Jult, who spent so much time in making a mod that never was released.

Thing is: we all move on to newer games. Or maybe stop playing because of other influences in 'real' life.

As for me: I saw many 'gaming friends' disappear in 1 year time. Which made me realize I should be more active in 'networking' with family and friends in 'real life'. Even if this means I have to play computergames I like less...

So I joined Age of Empires II, bought Starcraft II, play a horrible game like Evony (absolutely NOT forever free!)... And meet people I like. That is the most important thing.

I'll stick around in the forum here, maybe organize some kind of 'cozy' rom2 hat once in a while, and when I find inspiration continue making nwn maps for a new mod. But that will be a retirement project I'm afraid :)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 15-Sep-10, 18:08:09
It disappoints me to see how little interest has my project piqued in this community.
I had the impression it was cared about more.

But the evidence leads me to the opposite conclusion.
-- No new posts are in here.
-- My mailbox has no new messages from any of you.
-- My last e-mails remained unanswered.
-- Not even a friendly comment on my project page.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 06-Sep-10, 02:38:42
Those forums are officially closed.

The social forums are the new home of all BioWare boards.

Alas my project is not getting any reputation.
Perhaps it is because I am not a famous or "ranked" user.
Perhaps because I do not post much anyway.
Is it true that people judge you from things like your post count? -- haha

Or perhaps it is because with the forum change so many are seeing NWN 1 as a legacy game.
Or perhaps it is because the NWN 1 related forums have lesser visibility than those for Dragon Age.
Maybe it is a bit of everything.

My world continues anyway.
I made Fox Spells because I wanted to.
If people are not interested in it... it is their loss, truly.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Sep-10, 20:29:02
But why did you not post it in one of these forums?

http://nwn.bioware.com/forums/

That is where everyone looks...
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 01-Sep-10, 23:30:54
Hello.
On the new BioWare "social" forums I have opened a project: Fox Spells


It is available for public download, of course.
All you need to do is register an account.

There is no need to register your games, nor to post.
(actually the option to register your NWN copy is nowhere anymore)


Here is a link to the forums for NWN 1:
http://social.bioware.com/forum/1/subindex/153


Once logged in, to find my project follow this link:
http://social.bioware.com/project/3122/

-OR-

Hit the "Project" big gray button (up in the forums window), then use the
search feature with keywords "fox spells".

And you have it.
If you wish to make me smile, leave a comment or post in the discussion.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Aug-10, 21:16:58
Nothing much Fox, hollidays, enjoying the weather, and... Starcraft II lol! Well hollidays' over tomorrow, so back to work and when the weather gets colder, back to gaming :)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Aug-10, 02:07:46
Things have so quiet down here.
What is everyone up to?


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 26-Jul-10, 02:52:06
Hello

I am back online -- at least for the next 12 minutes :-)

I have packaged a new release of Fox Spells: 24 Jul 2010.

This one contains the latest updates to the summons I talked about in my previous post.

It also contains a few improvements to minor things.


----------------------------------------
Change of subject:

I see the BioWare forums have closed.
They have been moved to a new website, wherein I managed to register as myself (the.gray.fox)

There I also started a project. Of course it is "Fox Spells".

Currently the project can be seen by me alone.
I will update the permissions to participate, post comments, download files, et cetera once I understand the new website a little better.

For now -> check your e-mails.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 12-Jun-10, 19:05:26
Hello.

I keep working of my Spells. Can not get tired of it :-)


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I have refactored the damage from Planar Rifts.
It now scales more nicely, but tends to produce higher damage.
It is still a linear scaling. Remembering what NOVA said in a
previous post, I am questioning if it is the case to make it a
logaritmic scaling. In fact many creatures spawned at once may
now apply much greater damage than before.
I will see if I find a worthy alternative formula.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Speaking of summons... I have refactored the "Summon Creature"
series of spells (from I to IX).
Previously they lasted 24 Hours each. Now they last _much_ less,
which, incidentally, makes the Extend Spell metamagic useful to
obtain longer lasting summons.

Also, the creature levels now tend to copy the caster level.
The better you are, the better they are (within limits, of course).
To this end in the last days I have altered 340 creature templates.
Mammoth task, but the result is very rewarding.
Do not expect miracles, however. These new creatures are better,
but they still have their weak points, and may be defeated easily
if they meet the right foe.


To make an example, this is the new Spell description for the spell:
"Summon Creature V"
---------------------------------------->>>
Caster Level(s): Bard 5, Cleric 5, Druid 5, Wizard / Sorcerer 5
Innate Level: 5
School: Conjuration
Descriptor(s):
Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
Range: Short
Area of Effect / Target: Point
Duration: 3 Hours, +1/3 summon HD
Additional Counter Spells:
Save: None
Spell Resistance: No

The caster summons a 9 HD Dire Bear to be a faithful and loyal
servant. The creature gains 1 HD for each caster level past the
9th, to a maximum of 13 additional HD. Clerics with the Animal
Domain Powers feat summon a Dire Tiger, instead.
<<<----------------------------------------


First, notice the duration: 3 Hours, +1/3 summon HD
It means ths spell lasts 3 hours, plus 1 hour every 3 levels of the
summoned creature.
So if the summoned creature has 12 levels (or HD), the duration
becomes: 3 + 4 = 7 hours. Extendable to 14 hours.

Then look at the spell specifics:
It says that you call forth a 9 HD creature, a Dire Bear in this case.
This creature gains 1 more HD for each caster level that you have,
_past_ caster level 9. And in any case the Dire Bear may not gain more
than 13 HD.
It is saying that you can get a Dire Bear worth from 9 to 22 HD.

In simpler words, the Dire Bear will copy your caster level.
But since the Bear can range from 9 to 22 HD:
- if you caster level is 9 or less, the Dire Bear will have 9 HD.
- if you caster level is 22 or more, the Dire Bear will have 22 HD.

Makes sense?

Note that the original Dire Bear spawned from the original spell was
fixed to 12 HD. At some point all these spells will spawn a creature
much better than the original.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
All 9 "Summon Creature" spells have been changed like this.
More specifically:

Summon creature 1: Dire Badger (from 1 to 4 HD) -- original HD: 3.
Summon creature 2: Dire Boar (from 3 to 8 HD) -- original HD: 7.
Summon creature 3: Dire Wolf (from 5 to 13 HD) -- original HD: 6.
Summon creature 4: Dire Spider (from 7 to 17 HD) -- original HD: 10.
Summon creature 5: Dire Bear (from 9 to 22 HD) -- original HD: 12.
Summon creature 6: Dire Tiger (from 11 to 26 HD) -- original HD: 16.
Summon creature 7: (random) Huge Elemental (from 13 to 31 HD) -- original HD: 16.
Summon creature 8: (random) Greater Elemental (from 15 to 35 HD) -- original HD: 18.
Summon creature 9: (random) Elder Elemental (from 17 to 40 HD) -- original HD: 20.


As for the durations, they are:
Summon creature 1, 2, 3: 2 Hours, +1/2 summon HD.
Summon creature 4, 5, 6: 3 Hours, +1/3 summon HD.
Summon creature 7, 8, 9: 4 Hours, +1/4 summon HD.


These changes are in effect for NPC casters too, of course.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Last note.
While I was at it, I also changed (again) the Balors spawned by the Gate spell.
I have refactored them to follow the same level up rules I used for the other
creatures.
In some aspects these new Balors are weaker. In other aspects they are stronger.
Their calculated challenge rating is now accurate. A Balor spawned by a level 40 Gate
shall rate "Impossible" by most standards.




That is all for now.
Changes will be available with the next release of Fox Spells.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 08-Jun-10, 00:55:10
Believe me, the delay is currently not a problem. I am without internet access at home. A tornado ripped through my town two days ago (just after dark) and leveled about 35 homes (totally flattened and destroyed) and damage about 50 others. It's been in the national news, though the Ohio tornado has taken front page because of 5 deaths there.

The path of the tornado was 3 blocks south of my house. I heard it quite clearly (this is the 3rd tornado I've been very near). Amazingly, I have no damage what-so-ever (not even a twig in my yard). But ALL roads starting one block south of me are still totally closed off by 24 hour police presence. Only residents with valid ID are being let into the devastated areas. It's like a war zone. Fortunately, no one died and no one was seriously injured. It missed our local hospital by two blocks. That would have been truly devastating had the hospital been hit.

I'm posting this from work since this is my only access to the internet right now.

I'll check here and post when/if I can.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 07-Jun-10, 17:24:00
New release of Fox Spells -- 07 Jun 2010

Check your e-mails.

And sorry for the delay -- I am not having too much free time lately.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 28-May-10, 02:32:02
Behold! And witness the power of the fox.
Screen-shot:

http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/Yapyap.jpg

Hm. Did I hear a yapyap?
As requested by NOVA the Automatic Failure On 1 is no more
when saving against Planar Rifts.
I took full control of it -- as the picture subtly suggests.

Are there more requests?
If so, do post them -- Here or by e-mail.
You have time until I make the release. Few days.


------------------------------------------------------------
Back to the subject of traps:

I have found the fix to the problem of determining the owner of a trap.
There was a core function for it! -- Sometimes I am blind -- haha :-)
Now the traps will inform ONLY their owner of the damage they did to
a foe. Other players will not see it... unless they are that foe.

All I have to do now is to polish the remaining details.
Then I make the next release of Fox Spells.


For now, good night.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-May-10, 18:32:19
Hello NOVA.

Your request has reached the infinite heights of my inflatable ego.
Where it has been heard, and accepted -- haha
Hm. Eating a pie right now. Apple pies are the best.
They help me to think. And satisfy my stomach, as a bonus. How useful!

I acknowledge there is this potential problem with Planar Rifts.
I did provide a safe delay to allow people to realize that a summon was
spawning, and get out-of-the-way before it got too late.
But if you are surrounded and caged... it can be so unfair.

Thus, until I make the new release -> read below for a quick fix.


------------------------------------------------------------
(assuming you do not know of it already)

In your \NWN folder there is the nwplayer.ini file.
Within it there is a [Profile] section, under which you find the setting:

-- Saving Throw Automatic Failure On 1

By default it is set to: =1
If you set it to: =0 ...you no longer auto-fail by rolling 1.
But you still auto-succeed if you roll 20.

This only applies to Saving Throws.
Attack Rolls and Skill Checks are not affected.

As far as I know the setting was introduced in patch 1.68, after lot of
people complained for the retarded-ness of failing a save if rolling 1.
I personally agree with them and keep my setting at =0.

This change (if you make it) should affect the game in progress.
Because it is an INI setting, not a script.
Whether in Server mode or Single Player, you can save your current game,
make the change, then load the saved game back.
If in Server mode, you should use the Save/Load buttons of the server app.


------------------------------------------------------------
But I was here to say a different thing:


I have introduced 1 new functionality with traps.
Now, when a trap is triggered, a feedback message shall be broadcast to
all players close to the trap, and with line of sight to the creature
being hit.

In simpler terms: you get notified of the damage if you are close enough to
be interested by the event, and if there is no obstacle between you and the
victim of the trap.

The feedback message is of the form:

<TrapName> damages <VictimName>: <DamageAmount> (<DamageAmount> <DamageType>)

Which you have seen countless times.
It is the same message that you receive when you take (or give) damage.


Why the game does is not sending this feedback message then?

Because traps are like associates. Only, you do not see them added to the party.
But everything they do, they do it on their own -AND- on your behalf.
So you get no detailed info about what they are doing.
But you get all the glory and XP for it.

However, traps are particular.
They are one-shot. They do, or they do not. Either way -> they vanish after it.
If you get no feedback at all from your traps, how can you tell if you used the
right tool for the job?
Maybe your foe is particularly healthy.
You may lay down several traps, and they may damage this foe.
But how can you gauge how good/bad your traps did, if all you have to go-by is the
health status of the foe (Uninjured, Barely Injured...)
That kind of info is too vague to be any reliable.
Also, traps are not objects you can carry around in large quantities and sacrifice
for the cause, without care to run out of them.
Traps are supposed to be used _wisely_.
Sometimes they are the only Rogue weapon that will work against a specific foe.

So:
I find it appropriate that you are told how much damage your traps are doing.
So that you may learn to make proper use of them, and so get more fun from them :-)
And you are also told if they have killed the victim.
But you are not told how many HP were zeroed with the final blow.
If I would, you could gauge exactly how many HP a creature has. Therefore: no.

At the moment, the feedback message is sent to all players (close to the event),
and not just to the owner of the trap.
The point is that I have not found a flawless way to determine _who_ is the owner
of a trap. The matter is under investigation, but looks like there just is not
enough info available to determine it without flaw.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 26-May-10, 20:06:55
I have a small request regarding one of the spells, though I'm not real sure what I'm asking to be changed.

When playing Rhun with the Fox Spells, there are some monsters that cast GATE spells like crazy (specifically the SLAADS in the Abyss under the Mages' Guild) and you can never tell exactly where the GATE will be placed. As a result, no matter what your protections or how much health your character has, you have a minimum 5% chance to die instantly from EACH such spell (if you roll a natural "1" saving throw). I have an EPIC character that just keeps dying and dying and dying because of this even though the monsters being gated in are rated as EFFORTLESS foes. When you have encounters which spawn 4 of these monsters and each one casts a GATE spell at the initiation of the encounter and those gates literally surround you, it means you have about a 20% chance to die immediately in every such encounter. That seems brutal to put it mildly.

As I say, I'm not sure what I'm asking for, but could you perhaps revisit the effects of that spell and at least justify to yourself once again that the effects are appropriate. If you do decide to make any changes, it would be nice to slip them into your next release.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 26-May-10, 01:57:43
Hello.
New improvement for Fox Spells.
(available with the next release)

I have rewritten all traps. Reorganized the code into 1 file. Made it faster and less buggy.
Ooh the countless bugs -- from the smallest to the stupidest.
This shows how -in the years- those portions of code have been altered by several and uncoordinated persons who would not test their stuff after the changes.

No more.
In the process I have completely rebalanced the trap damages, side-effect behaviors (where applicable), and all DC values (including those to Set, Detect and Disarm the traps).
Traps are more reliable now. And more dangerous.
Rogues will dig for them, recover them, and reuse them against monsters.

I also introduced the 7 missing Epic trap types (there where only 4: Fire, Frost, Sonic, Electrical).

With my new traps you can no longer say which is best and which is not.
They are made different. For different purposes. With strengths and weaknesses.
Some have higher DCs. Others have higher damage.
Some give you a damage you may easily resist (if adeguately prepared).
Others give you a damage you can never fully negate.

Why Fox Spells should care about traps?
Because traps are similar to spells.
They give saving throws and apply spell-effects to the victims.
Often traps do mimic stuff done by one or more spells already.
It would be inconsistent if traps and spells would not use the same code for doing similar tasks.


----------------------------------------
A side note:

Thanks to the code I wrote for the traps, I discovered and fixed 1 major bug in Fox Spells.
Was not really my fault -- But I should have noticed it earlier.
The Lexicon does not mention it either.

The bitwise operator >>> (perhaps also the >> and << operators) fails to shift by an amount of 32.
If you try, no shift is performed. As if the shift amount was 0, thus leaving the original input variable _unchanged_ (the bug).

So, the maximum working single shift amount is 31 -- remember it.
If you have to shift by 32, do it in 2 separate and consecutive steps who amount to a toal of 32 (any combo is okay).
That will work.
At BioWare they should learn how to program. I do mean it!

Because of this bug (too big to ignore) I will make a new release of Fox Spells shortly.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 08-Apr-10, 17:03:14
New change to the metamagic system.
Available with the next release of Fox Spells.


Because I could not read it properly -at the time-, I got convinced that an empowered and maximized spell would gain the combined effects of both feats.

In other words, a roll of 1d4+1 would be empowered and maximized to the fixed amount of [7].
That is, get the best result of the roll, [5], then add to it half its value, [+2] --> [7].

But recently I have read the core rulebook again (3rd edition rules, always), and I notice that the metamagic effects should _not_ combine.
Rather their benefits should be calculated separately, then summed together.

So an empowered and maximized roll is the result of the maximized roll, plus half the normal roll.

In other words, a roll of 1d4+1 (now) gets empowered and maximized as follow:
Maximized roll = [5] ... OR [5 to 5] (same thing)
Half normal roll = [2 to 5] / 2 --> [1 to 2.5] --> [1 to 2]

Sum both together: [5 to 5] + [1 to 2] --> [6 to 7]
There is a difference, you see.

You may argue that from [7] to [6 to 7] little is changed.
But the difference becomes more sensible as the roll becomes bigger.

Take another roll for example: 2d6+3.
Previously I would empower and maximize it to: [22] ... OR [22 to 22]
Now I empower and maximize it to: [15 to 15] + [2 to 7] --> [17 to 22]

This is the correct 3rd edition rules behavior.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Apr-10, 13:50:00
Everyone here would like to see a module based on your spellsystem. But building such a module from scratch?

I used the existing Rhun module as a base for my mod. So 80% of the monsters were there ready to use. It was not an adventure game but basically hack & slash, and I only spent time for a storyline to make a decend ending... That took over 3 months! Total time spent was around 9 months (about 15 hours every week). Imagine what it would take to build a module from scratch, creating every monster, figuring out a storyline, making quests...

It could be done if several players take part. One to create maps, one to figure out a story and make quests, one to make monsters, one to implement scripts... So four at least, but preferably more. Giving each other feedback, stimulating each other to continue. And still it would take years. Probably.

I would like to help, but I am not going to make a story with quests, or create the monsterbase. If someone else is willing to do this fine! I'll help with the maps and/or scripts. Anyone?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-Mar-10, 22:54:38
Hello

No royalties are in my plans.

I do this out of my liking for the game.
And because I have free time to spend on this hobby.
And because I wish someday to see a module built around Fox Spells.
That would make me so happy :-)

"fixing"? I can fix bugs in a script.
For game-engine bugs I can only find work-arounds.

So far I have -with success- worked around all engine bugs I cared for.
To say it all, I purposely trigger one of those bugs to implement a feature of Fox Spells.
World is not only white or black. There is Gray too.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 28-Mar-10, 23:05:17
So when do you start drawing a royalty fee for fixing all of Bioware's game bugs???
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 28-Mar-10, 19:18:29
Hello.
A new bugfix for the Monk class.
Available with the next release of Fox Spells.

Any penalty to Spell Resistance would not work on a character with the "Diamond Soul" feat, or any of the ten "Improved Spell Resistance" epic feats.

Monks auto-gain Diamond Soul at Monk level 12.
The feat grants them permanent Spell Resistance equal to the Monk class level +10.
But permanent or not, a Spell Resistance increase is supposed to get lowered if struck by the opposite effect: Spell Resistance Decrease.
With the Diamond Soul original feat (and its epic successors): it _would not_.

The bug is hardcoded in the game-engine.

The solution: I turn the original feats unavailable.
Then I provide a substitute for each.

My feats are exact copy of the originals. A player can not notice a thing.
The difference is that my scripts (not the game) shall handle and update the Spell Resistance bonus granted to the character who has those feats.

One more bug defeated :-)


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Mar-10, 18:58:20
(2nd post of the day)


Hello.

I have introduced two new changes in my Spells.
They will be available with the next release.


------------------------------------------------------------
The first change is about the Monk class.

As I explained in the Readme accompanying Fox Spells, any
Character with the Perfect Self feat is treated as Outsider.
As such it becomes prey of some spells tailored to harm
outsiders (descriptions always say if a spell does things to
specific Class or Racial types).
Also, when I altered the rules for the Spell Resistance
checks, I have made so that monks are at a (small)
disadvantage over non-monks.

I thought over this for a long time.
Looks fair to me that monks receive something in return, to
balance out their new troubles.
I want people to keep using the Monk class.
So I thought to grant the Monk something unique: a special
Base Attack Bonus (or BAB) progression for the Epic levels.

I have touched this subject many tiems. I do it once more.
As you know, every Class in game follows a specific BAB
progression.
Three BAB progressions exist in NWN.
They have no name, but we may classify them by quality:
- 1st rate
- 2nd rate
- 3rd rate

BAB works by applying a bias to your Base Attack at every
new level you take.
The bias cyclically repeats over a period of 4 character
levels.

1st rate BAB has a progression of: +1, +1, +1, +1.
2nd rate BAB has a progression of: +0, +1, +1, +1.
3rd rate BAB has a prorgession of: +0, +1, +0, +1.

Fighters are example of 1st rate BAB. They gain 4 Base
Attack points in 4 levels.
Fighters build +20 Base Attack at level 20.
Monks are example of 2nd rate BAB. They gain 3 Base Attack
points in 4 levels.
Monks build +15 Base Attack at level 20.
Wizards are example of 3rd rate BAB. They gain 2 Base Attack
points in 4 levels.
Wizards build +10 Base Attack at level 20.

These BAB progressions only apply to the pre-Epic Character
levels (from 1 to 20).
The Epic levels follow a new BAB progression similar to 3rd
rate, but inverted: +1, +0, +1, +0.
All Epic characters (regardless of Class), build a +10 Base
Attack in their Epic levels.

A Fighter(40) ends up with Base Attack +30 (20 pre-Epic, 10 Epic).
A Monk(40) ends up with Base Attack +25 (15 pre-Epic, 10 Epic).
A Wizard(40) ends up with Base Attack +20 (10 pre-Epic, 10 Epic).

What I have changed is the Epic BAB progression of the Monk
class. It no longer is: +1, +0, +1, +0.
It now is: +0, +1, +1, +1.

So yes, the Epic Monk now continues to build his BAB as he
did when he was pre-Epic.
A Monk(40) ends up with Base Attack +30 (15 pre-Epic, 15 Epic).

This change is retro-active and relative.
Old monks will see their Base Attack adjusted as they play a
Module with Fox Spells.
The Base Attack will revert to stock bioware as they play a
Module without Fox Spells.


------------------------------------------------------------
The second change is about the Caster Levels of NPC Special-Abilities.

This may need a brief lesson.
What is a "Caster Level" ?

To answer, we must make a step back.
There are feats. And there are spells.
They look and feel so very different to a player, but they
are so very similar (quasi-the-same) to NWN.
In fact both feats and spells are internally referred to as
Talents.

A character (be it PC or NPC) is not born with all talents
readily available to him.
Your characters collect their talents over time, through
level up.
Think about it: when you level up, you do so in 1 class at a
time.
What ever you do to your character during a level up, you
are doing it on behalf of that 1 class you are taking the
new level in -- what a statement :-)
You may not pay attention to this detail, but the game does.
Any new talent you acquire, is registered by the game under
the list of "things got for that Class".
(it is a little more complex than that -- but no matter now).

Such that when you make use of a talent (be it feat or
spell) the game knows to _which_ Class (of your character)
that talent belongs.
How many levels you got in that Class? That is your Caster Level.
I hope the explanation is clear -- can not make it easier.

Ah yes, feats too (by virtue of being Talents) do possess a
Caster Level, whether or not the script attached to those
feats (if any) has a use for it (usually none).
Spells -of course- do make extensive use of the Caster Level.
(Caster Levels also play a role in the Spell Resistance
checks and also in the Dispel Checks -- see how important
they are?)

Special-Abilities are talents.
Special-Abilities are very similar to spells (they often
mimic true spells).
But Special-Abilities do not come from a Spellbook (that is
the difference with real spells).

Now take a NPC monster (like a Balor or a Succubus).
Open his Properties Window, and go to the Special Abilities
tab.
You can see a number of entries in there. Each is a
Special-Ability this creature can use.
You are also told how many times it can be used, and at
which Caster Level each is "cast".
Notice how the Caster Level is 15. It defaults to 15.
You may change it, but if you do not it is always 15.
15 regardless of the creature classes and the levels taken
in those classes.
Now open ANY of the stock creatures of NWN. Or even ANY
custom creature of Rhun, Nordock, or other module.
You will see nobody has ever bothered to give their
creatures the correct Caster Levels for their Special-Abilities.

(Open...
I do not blame them. It is a super tedious job. And if you
change the Class Levels of a creature, you must remember to
manually update the Caster Levels. Who wants to do that?
... closed)

If you understand what the Caster Level is, you also
understand that -by design- the Caster Level is always equal
to the amount of levels taken in the casting class being
used (that is: the class owning the talent ... OR, the class
leveing up when the talent was taken).

If a Balor is Outsider(13), it means he has taken 13 class
levels in Outsider.
As the Outsider is his only class, any talent this Balor
makes use of must belong to his Outsider class.
And so any talent this Balor shall use, should have a Caster
Level of 13. Not 15!

The Caster Level heavily influences the raw power of a Spell
or Special-Ability. The higher, the better.

Take again the Balor(13) in our example. He can summon a
minion: a Succubus (by casting the "Summon Tanarri").
This Succubus is level 5. She has only 5 levels in Outsider
class. So what talent she uses, MUST have a Caster Level of 5.
But then you see the Succubus casts Evard's Black Tentacles
at caster level 15! That is plain wrong.
It is an unfair advantage she has, for she is weighting as a
spellcaster that is 10 levels higher than what she actually
is.
Ten levels make lot of difference.

But the opposite of all this is true as well.
Take a Dragon. Give him 40 class levels in Dragon Class.
His Caster Level is obviously 40.
Yet the Special-Abilities he casts are still defaulted at
Caster level 15.
That is a disadvantage for the Dragon. He is weighting as a
spellcaster of 25 levels below his righteous amount.
(Hm. "Righteous Amount". Sounds so nice)

Now you get the problem about caster levels.
It is no small thing, for it is unbalancing and plaguing the
entire game from Day Zero.

This only applies to Special-Abilities, lucky we.
When a NPC takes Class levels in a true spellcaster class
(such as Wizard), he gains access to a real spellbook and
real spells (in fact you cast add things to his Spells tab).
When he casts _those_ spells, his Caster Level is always
accurate.
However -haha- notice how the Caster Level of his real Spells
is incorrectly repeating the Spell Level.
That is a visual glitch of the editor interface. The proper
Caster level is being adopted in game -- I have verified it.


Fox Spells ensures that any Special-Ability, cast by a NPC,
receives the most appropriate Caster Level according to the
classes and levels taken by that NPC.
Sadly I have to go through this from the "opposite" end, for
the game keeps to itself the information that tells me what
is the casting class being used.
If there is only 1 class, I can not mistake.
But when it is multi-class? I have to make an educated
guess. And using few instructions too.
So in some instance is possible that a Special-Ability
receives a Caster Level higher or lower than what it should be.
None the less, the Caster Level received shall be
"possible", in that it always matches one of the Class
Levels possessed by the creature (therefore within the
physical limits of that creature).

As always, I ensure that no NPC counts more than 40 levels.
NPC may go up to level 60, but their Caster Level roofs at 40.
Like it is for PC.


Also note that NPC may use spells and Special Abilities cast
from _Items_ in their inventory.
You should know that When a spell-like thing originates from
an Item, it uses its own fixed Caster Level provided by the
item.
The Caster, in fact, is not the user of the item, but the
Item itself.
Do not be surprised when your Wizard(40) makes use of a scroll
of Magic Missiles (2)... and only 1 missile appears (and
maybe it gets resisted too -- haha).
That (2) is the Caster Level of the spell launched by the
scroll.
If you read the spell description on the scroll itself, you
see that at caster level 1, you get 1 missile.
Then 1 more missile every 2 (Caster) levels past the first.
Max 5 missiles anyway.
As the scroll casts the spell with a caster Level of 2, it
is only natural that you get 1 missile.

(Open...
The Beauty & Crux of items. They grant you access to any
spell. But the power is fixed to a fraction of what it could
be if cast by a real mage. Make sure you remember it.
... closed)


------------------------------------------------------------
Last note is about the AI I am writing.
For the most part it will be a replica of the bioware stock
AI scriptset.
I will insert enhancements where I find room for them.
Other than that -> the stock AI is fine.
Maybe not challenging, but definitely not stupid.
(and times better written than many custom AI I am seeing)
It only needs to be taught to make better use of what she
has at disposal (my Spells not least of all).


That is all for now.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Mar-10, 18:55:02
------------------------------------------------------------
NOVA said:

Perhaps this is a dumb question, but I don't suppose you have a sort of USER's GUIDE that will teach players how to use your Fox Spell System? I can't even use the normal NWN spells because they are too darned difficult. I can only imagine what it will be like trying to learn a new system without any kind of documentation or starter's guide.
------------------------------------------------------------

Hello NOVA,
I do not get it.

What is difficult about spells?

You learn to use spellcasters as you learned to use a melee class.
Through practice, personal experience, and the reading of descriptions of feats and skills.
Is that not how you became accustomed to your favorite class?

Fox Spells brings lot of improvements (and bug fixes) over the stock spell system,
but does not change it in any radical way.
So what you learned of the stock spell system, does apply to my spell system.
I strived to achieve this goal.

As for the changes you _have_ to be informed by me about, they are all stated
in the Readme accompaning my package. There is a ::For Players:: section.

You even have up to date spell descriptions to accurately reflect everything I have done to a spell.
Think that is something everyoene does? Think again :-)
Not many modifications for all spells exist for NWN, and none of them gives you updated spell descriptions.
All you are given, instead, is 400 KB of text to read and memorize in your head, down to the last detail.
Is that their idea of making this game any better or more accessible?

Fox Spells spares you this burden. You are not required to memorize a book.
Just read the descriptions you have in game, and you know what the spell does.

My descriptions may not be written in perfect english, and I apologize for that,
but they are in tune with the BioWare original descriptions (so they do not look out of place).


With this said, I can prepare a NPC and a conversation to have with him, in which you are told all the _new_ things I do and that the stock spell system does not.
But in no way I can write a complete tutorial on spellcasting.
There is really too much to say on the subject, and the biggest portion of it is quickly learned by use.
In this regard the BioWare programmers did an excellent job: all the major informations can be gained by reading the descriptions of spellcaster Classes, feats, skills, and spells.
That is, what you would read anyway to play the spellcaster.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Mar-10, 19:13:49
Lol Fox, you spend more time on the spellsystem than I do on playing NwN. Don't know when I'll be testing again. Can be next month, or in autumn... The second is more likely. Stopped working on projects for now because I find it hard to set goals without a regular player base. I'll add your spells and hope for more inspiration in future :)
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 17-Mar-10, 04:14:59
Just thought of an even better idea than that. Forget about the FOX NPC I suggested earlier for the Modder's Pub. Put the FOX NPC in the Gateway to RHUN with a conversation file that will explain the FOX SPELL SYSTEM to anyone who joins. Maybe have a floating text above his head that says "hey, wanna hear about my great new spell system?" or something like that to encourage players to check it out.

Just a thought.

-NOVA
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 17-Mar-10, 03:40:52
Perhaps this is a dumb question, but I don't suppose you have a sort of USER's GUIDE that will teach players how to use your Fox Spell System? I can't even use the normal NWN spells because they are too darned difficult. I can only imagine what it will be like trying to learn a new system without any kind of documentation or starter's guide.

Just a thought anyway.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Mar-10, 19:37:58
Hello.

New release of Fox Spells (16 Mar 2010).
Some things refined. A pair of bugs corrected.

I had no intention to make another release so soon.
But from previous version I have changed many little things -- became worth to share.

No idea when the next release will be.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Feb-10, 23:47:12
Hello.

New release of Fox Spells (22 Feb 2010).
All spellcaster classes are fully usable -- finally.
Please check your e-mails.

No idea when the next release will be.
I want to write a decent AI scriptset.
Or NPCs will never make smart use of my spells (or even react in any smart way to them).
It will take me a while.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 21-Feb-10, 16:05:21
Hello.
I changed the spell "Glyph of Warding".
Completely rewritten.

The NWN version is much different from D&D.
I must say they tried to make it like the original, but NWN offers not enough support for all the functionality needed.
Couple this with the -honest- very poor implementation of the spell, and the result is a bad set of scripts.

To fix this spell required me to go back and modify nearly every other spell.
Elephant job I hope I do not have to repeat.

The new (fox version) Glyph of Warding now offers 5 subradial choices, with which the caster can select the type of element for the damage to deal (Acid, Cold, Electrical, Fire, Sonic).
Lost is the ability to preplace a Glyph of Warding via Toolset.
Lost is the ability for the Glyph to "fire" any kind of offensive spell upon triggering.
Gained is the ability for the Glyph to be correctly and immediately removed when the Caster dies, or takes a rest or logs off.
Gained is the ability for the Glyph to be correctly dispelled only after a proper dispel-check.
Unchanged is the ability of the Glyph to turn invisible after being cast -- a specific Module Switch has to be enabled for that.

All problems of this spell are born from the use of a Placeable object to "pin" the visual effect of the glyph.
In fact the visual effect (very cool) is unsuitable for a Persistent Area of Effect spell (what Glyph of Warding is).
That is why BioWare used a Placeable. But placeables are disjoint from spells. Unlike spell-effects they do not auto-vanish when it is time.
I too use a Placeable. But my scripts do take care of it properly -- of course.
And I use less scripts too, and need not a custom Placeable for the Glyph.
Fox for a reason -- excuse my ego.

One (1) Cleric spell remains. Then all spellcasters are fixed and 100% usable.
I will make a new release. Complete with source code, this time.

Next will be a custom AI, so that NPC too can take advantage of all the systems I have written, and they will provide a better challenge and make intelligent use of my spells.
I do not know how much it will take. Writing an AI is easy. Writing a good AI is not.
But I will work on it.
When the AI will be ready and sufficiently tested, a new release will follow.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 13-Jan-10, 18:04:56
New changes to the Metamagic system:

Spellcaster classes no longer receive 2 "metapoints" per caster level.
Now I differentiate between each class, as follow:
-- Bard : 1.5 points per level.
-- Cleric : 1.5 points per level.
-- Druid : 1.5 points per level.
-- Paladin : 1 point per level.
-- Ranger : 1 point per level.
-- Sorcerer : 2 points per level.
-- Wizard : 2 points per level.
(In future I may tweak the amounts for a better balancing)

Like before:
- Extending a spell costs 1 metapoint
- Empowering a spell costs 2 metapoints
- Maximizing a spell costs 3 metapoints
Regardless of the caster class.
Any combo of the three is possible (so long they apply to the spell being cast).

There is no penalty for multi-classing.
Class levels are collected and multiplied by their respective amount of points.
Then all is summed together, and rounded down to the nearest integer.

Example with a Bard(11) + Druid(8) character:

Bard points: 11 x 1.5 = 16.5
Druid points: 8 x 1.5 = 12.0

Total points: 16.5 + 12.0 = 28.5
Rounded to: 28 points


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 01-Jan-10, 04:31:03
OK, I have a working EPIC GUILD now. There's not a whole lot in it yet, but there is a guild. I'll be adding to the guild slowly and steadily. Right now there's just one NPC from whom you can get Forge Tokens (see below). He trades a vial of dragon blood for a single token. And the Guild receptionist won't let you in unless you are a Member.

The Omega Forge is now altered so that it takes only TOKENS as payment. These tokens are only available to members of the EPIC GUILD and they take a LONG time to accumulate enough to spend at the Forge (at least in order to produce your own custom Epic Level Gear).

I also patched up Devalia's Home so you can get to all of her rooms. Her house is pretty sparse right now, but I'll add some furnishings soon. And her door is locked so you have to figure out how to get in.

And I removed those ridiculous Stinger Armor and Scorpion's Tail random loot items from the Stinger Champions which sold for upwards of 2-3 million gold (if you found the right merchants). Gold should be relatively hard to accumulate once again. At least you can't pile up tens of millions in a matter of an hour.

I'm working on getting all the doors in Ancient Taer to close after you've opened them, but god dang there are a lot of doors in that city.

There are many many other alterations I've made in the past month or so, but above are what I've managed to add in the last 24 hours. One update from a few weeks ago which I particularly like is the Property Master in the Etum Capital who will let you rename your gear to anything you want. "NOVA's Kick Ass Sword" anyone? You can also edit up to a 200-digit custom item description for your items. He charges only a nominal property registration fee for this service.

I started to add a crafting tradeskill system, but gave up on it because it was just too damned lame and cumbersome. Shame too cuz the public forge was looking really nice before I deleted it. If I can come up with a decent crafting system of my own, I'll try to include it. I really want some sort of crafting in there, but implementing a logical and still useful one is going to be an arduous task indeed.

I'll post more updates as I make them.

-NOVA
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 31-Dec-09, 12:18:53
Gray Fox:
The Omega Forge is also part of my module: Open it in the toolset and take a look at the map called Omega Forge. The scripts are the same is in Nova's forge (I only changed the number of upgrades allowed).

NOVA:
Everything you ask for is available in my module.
-Item droprate: Take a look at the DM room with the chests and take a look at the explantion of the scripts I provided. You can setup a chest with items as low or as high as you wish for every monster or group of monsters or even complete maps. This overrules the normal droppings (or you can disable the normal droppings in Rhun)
-Teleport stones: There are examples of 'if you have XXX in your inventory' - than 'show conversation' everwhere in conversations in quest inns. You can use them in 'conversations' with the teleporters to detect if they may show the player an option to teleport to another teleporter. Than add a teleport script to the conversation for every destination. At the same time you can remove the teleport script from the Obelisk pieces (simply remove the Cast Spell Unique Power Self Only).
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 31-Dec-09, 01:32:20
NOVA,

I never seen the Omega Forge.
How is it operated in game?
Do you speak with someone/something, and pick what you "want done" by conversation?

The change you want for the Obelisks is certainly do-able by conversation.

Would you like a tiny demo module?
In it I put what you need to learn the ins and outs of conversations.
I bet -- after my module you are able to dissect and modify any conversation (or make new ones entirely).


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 30-Dec-09, 18:58:09
Since I have a few days off work for our New Year's shutdown, I'll try to make a few more alterations to the Rhun module. I can't make any ambitious promises because I suck at scripting. Besides, the public Rhun module had an entire team of people who spent two years modifying it and what they produced, though large in scope, has tremendous flaws and problems. I'm just one moron (and only a marginally motivated one at that). It would help tremendously if there was a whole team working on this rather than just one person.

At any rate, I would really like to drastically alter the core rapid travel system in Rhun. Though those obelisks are pretty cool and seem to be smattered all over Rhun, they just don't make much logical sense to me. Right now, anyone who has a rune piece from an obelisk can instantly teleport TO that obelisk from virtually anywhere in the world of Rhun (with a few anti-magic exclusion areas). Personally, I think a more logical method would be to allow transportation BETWEEN obelisks. In other words, if you are at one obelisk, you can travel to any of the others for which you have a rune piece. In this way, the oblelisks become more of a stationary teleportation network. Unfortunately, this means some serious scripting changes (serious by my standards at least).

Even more daunting are the alterations I want to make to the Omega Forge. I want to create an EPIC GUILD which you must be a member of before you can even use the Omega Forge. And even for members, use of the Forge is arduous, expensive, and infrequent (only possible after some serious questing for the GUILD). I have a rough plan laid out, but holy hanna it involves some serious module changes and tremendous amounts of new scripting.

I also want to totally change the random treasure system. I don't believe the current system makes much sense (at least not from a world economy standpoint). There is simply way too much magical loot floating around. Going out and slaughtering endless random spawns is the only current way to get enough gold (which you get by selling this endless supply of magic gear to the stores). I would prefer to steer play more toward questing (and thus have questing be more your prime source of XP and loot). My idea is to re-configure the random loot tables and then, have the reward for many of the quests be a random access roll on these new random loot tables (based upon the difficulty level of each quest). Random encounters would no longer drop gold and random treasure (at least naught but a token amount). Likewise, the respawn times for these encounters could thus be greatly extended (because you no longer need an endless and continuous supply of creatures to kill just to farm for loot and XP).

I've no idea how in the hell I would ever get all this done, but those are some of my aspirations for the module. I think it would provide a MUCH better playing experience if this was the way the module was constructed. It would also provide for much more opportunities for the OTHER character classes (those which do not just go out and kill endlessly) to become more enticing and useful. Rogues, mages, clerics, rangers, etc, would suddenly be much more capable of advancing and prospering (which is the way it should be).

I have many many thousands of miles ahead on this journey. With these few days off work, hopefully I can move forward a few inches at least.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 28-Dec-09, 15:14:45
I forgot...


------------------------------------------------------------
Changes to spells:
-- The Paladin spell "Holy Sword" previously applied 2 extra
damage bonuses:
+1d6 Divine damage VS Evil
+1d6 Divine damage VS Lawful Evil

I lowered the +1d6 to +1d4.
Ever since I fixed the bug in "Divine Might", Paladins have
gained tremendous boost in damage. At times I doubt the "bug"
was really a bug. Maybe it was intentional. But it was against
the rules, so I had to fix it.
My test Paladin can be worrying. All buffed, with only a junk
Greatsword weapon, he outputs a damage range of [53 -- 69],
without critical hits. This damage spans 4 types: Slashing,
Bludgeoning, Magical and Divine.
Add to it the 25% chance to cast "Dispel Magic" OnHit.
Thank the heavens Paladins are "do-gooders"!
One might erroneously take them for Heralds of Doom...

-- The Paladin Supernatural abilities "Divine Might" and
"Divine Shield" have a lowered duration. From 4x Rounds their
Charisma Modifier, to 3x Rounds their Charisma Modifier.


------------------------------------------------------------
Planned changes:

I did introduce a rule that no two weapon-enchanting spells
could coexist on the same weapon. This rule is a "must", because
the native functionality of NWN does not allow scripts to do
complex stuff with itemproperties.
Recently I had an idea that may solve the problem.
But it will require lot of testing and debugging just to see
if it can be done, and to what degree of success.
But if it works... it would allow for some cool things :-)


------------------------------------------------------------
Canceled changes:

Some time ago I did talk of introducing an automated system
to dynamically adjust the DC of all spells, to allow Module
builders to make the monsters they wanted -- and my system
could be used to increase or decrease the DC of spells
accordingly, to allow spellcasters to fight those monsters.
I did call it "Biased DC", remember?

It can not be done. Poison and Disease spells are hardcoded in
the game to such an extent that if you want to change their
DCs you have to manually modify their 2da data. And all 2da
data is "static" and "read-only" when the game runs.
This defeats my idea of making dynamic DCs, completely.


So...
The ball jumps back to Module builders. They must know what
they are doing with their monsters, or they make a bad module.

For monsters:
Do not give them super Constitutions. Give them more HPs.

Do not give them super Dexterities. Give them more ACs.
Or also "Attack Bonus" on their weapons (for "Weapon Finesse"
based monsters).

Do not give them super Wills. Give them specific immunities to
mind-states and spells (but thread lightly with those!)

If your monsters are too easy for melee, but too hard for
spells, you are giving them too high Ability stats.

Conversely, if your monsters are too hard for melee, but too
easy for spells, they need more damage reductions.

There are plenty of solutions to make great monsters with
_regular_ Ability stats.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 28-Dec-09, 14:14:57
Hello.

I have been so silent about my Spells.
I keep working on it -- if you wonder.

Made mammoth changes -- they can be synth in few lines.


------------------------------------------------------------
Changes to the Metamagic system:
-- Improved performance.
In extreme cases the instructions count is cut to 1/3rd.
This makes the code Hell to read and modify. But the chances
are I will not need touch it again.


------------------------------------------------------------
Changes to the Dispel system:
-- Improved performance.
A number of checks done per spells are now done much faster.

-- No longer dispels Supernatural effects.

-- Summoned Associates manually unsummoned by radial menu
are properly ignored by the dispellers.
This alone is a STELLAR achievement. Nobody else, as far as
I know, can wear this medal on his jacket -- I can :-)

-- Correctly dispels all non-Instantaneous Magical effects
(like D&D dictates) unless the spell description clearly
says different.

Flat said: the art of dispelling no longer requires study.
No more caveats. No more exceptions to rules.
What NWN was *meant* to be -with respect to D&D rules-, now
my system *is*; down to the last detail -- minus the flaws.

The only "liberty" I take is to force the *Automatic Success*
in "area dispel" mode as in "targeted dispel" mode.
D&D says that in targeted dispel mode the caster always auto-succeed
the dispel-checks VS his own spells.
But in area dispel mode the caster may *choose* to auto-succeed
or not, for *each* of his spells.
This mechanism can not be mimed in NWN :-(
For balance purpose I force the auto-success in "area dispel".


------------------------------------------------------------
Changes to the Spell Resistance system:
-- Improved performance.
A console report was being always built. If there was no
console to output to, the stuff would go unused. But the CPU
worked to build it none-the-less (oops). No more.


------------------------------------------------------------
Changes to Planar Rifts:
-- Its messages are no longer sent to Players too far away,
from the "action", to be interested by it.


------------------------------------------------------------
Changes to spells:
-- Improved performance (collateral benefit of using faster
"target filters").

-- Enabled the Big-Module Fix for the Mobile AOE spell
"Ghoul Touch" (it did escape my attention somehow).

-- Perfectioned the targeting rules of the spells: Heal,
Mass Heal, and Harm.

-- All non-InstantDeath non-AOE spells now target the
"Hostiles".

-- Almost all InstantDeath spells now target the "Enemies".

-- No two same spells, from same caster, shall coexist on
the same target creature. The latter shall overwrite the
former (except in few specific cases).
But two same spells, from two different casters, may coexist
on the same target creature (except in few specific cases).

-- No two very-similar spells, from same caster, shall
coexist on the same target creature. The latter shall
overwrite the former (no exceptions).
But two very-similar spells, from two different casters, may
coexist on the same target creature (no exceptions).


Previously a Dispel report could not output the "abc" spell
name twice (or more) in the same report.
This was because no two same spells (regardless of casters)
could coexist on the same target.

But the rule is changed.
So a Dispel report may now display the "abc" spell name more
than 1 time. It is no bug.
The count of times the same spell name is displayed indicates
the amount of (different) casters who did apply that spell.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 04-Oct-09, 20:00:21
Hello.
I changed the Druid spell: Spike Growth.
Original D&D spell is so different.
Its mechanics can not be replicated in NWN.

Yet BioWare version is so lame.
Not only it calls scripts that have nothing to
do with the spell (I had yet to see this -- haha),
but also frankensteins pieces of other spells.

The result: Spike Growth looks like Entanglement,
deals insignificant damage, deals the wrong
amount of Movement Speed Decrease, removes it in
the wrong way (yby the way) and there are no
"spikes" to see at all.

So lame.
Thus I re-invent the spell.

1d4 piercing damage to all hostiles within he AOE.
Taken each round.
A Reflex Save is allowed to escape a 33% MSD penalty
lasting 24 hours.
But when the penalty is suffered, there is no way to
remove it (unless you use magic, or equip something
that makes you immune to MSD).

The spell visual effects are now those of a Spike
Trap. I am re-arranging the Sound to make it less
annoying (hearing it many times is real irritating).

Spell duration is decreased from 1 Hour per caster
level, to 2 Turns +1 per 3 caster levels.
Extendable -- of course.
So at level 40 you may cast an Extended Spike Growth
to last 30 real-time minutes.

Spell Focus feats in Transmutation school improve
the damage as follow:
- Spell Focus: +1d4 piercing damage
- Greater Spell Focus: +2d4 piercing damage
- Epic Spell Focus: +2d4 piercing damage

Each such feat also upgrades the spikes Attack Bonus,
from +0 to +1, then +3, finally +5.

With this spell you can hardly kill something.
But it is useful to give your foes a very long
Movement Speed Decrease.

The MSD penalty is applied only once per creature,
no matter how much she stays in the AOE.
But another AOE may apply another MSD.
And the two would stack.
So, currently, 3 piled Spike Growth AOEs can slow
down a creature by 99%. Devastating to most.

Note that MSD penalties are all cumulative and
absolute (I dislike it -- but I must like it).
This is undocumented.
If you move at 150% speed, and I give you 33% decrease,
you do not lose 1/3rd of 150. But you lose 33 of 150.
So the speed is reduced to 117% (not 100%).
Spike Growth applies 33% MSD always.

So most un-hastened creatures will see their speed
reduced to 1% (the absolute minimum) with 3 such
spells.
But a Monk with the "Monk Speed" feat may need more
penalties stacked to make him drop to 1% speed.
Makes sense?

As I said the MSD is lasting, and will not auto-lift
when the victim quits the AOE bounds.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 01-Oct-09, 01:48:03
Hello.
I changed the Druid spell: Infestation of Maggots.

It had some flaws, but none too terrible.
The spell description said it lasted 1 round per 2 levels.
Instead it lasted 10 rounds, +1 per caster level.

Other than that, the Constitution penalty it was applying
was too strong -- I believe.
1d4 points every round. Subject to metamagic too.

Spell would end -regarldess of duration- at the first
Fortitude Save (VS Disease) won by the victim.

This was being more harmful to Players than to AI.
Another bad thing for players was that in game difficulty
above Normal it would instantly kill you if you Constitution
dropped any below 3.

I felt it was bad designed. And it is nowhere in 3rd Ed. D&D.
So I rewritten it completely.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


The penalty is changed into 1 point. To Constitution.
Spell duration is changed into 2 rounds, +1 / 3 levels.

At each round, a Fortitude save (VS Disease) is allowed.
Failing the save, a new -1 Constitution penalty is applied.
If the save is won, no penalty is applied for _that_ round.
But the spell continues for all its intended duration.

I remove the instant-kill thing.

With Spell Focus feats in Necromancy school new penalties
are applied along with the one to Constitution:

- Spell Focus: +Strength penalty.
- Greater Spell Focus: +Dexterity penalty.
- Epic Spell Focus: +Fortitude and Reflex penalties.

Of course all are cumulative.

Now imagine what a Level 40 Druid with Epic Spell Focus in
Necromancy can do with this spell :-)

The victim starts losing Constitution, HP, Fortitude Save,
Strength, Attack bonus, Damage bonus, Dexterity, Dodge AC,
Reflex saves.
It maby also become encumbered, due to strength reduction.

So either you resist it from the start, or save against the
first Fortitude save you are given... or you get more and
more in trouble with it.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 28-Sep-09, 02:11:46
Hello.

I continue to improve the original spells.
A few were done in these days. Not worth a talk.

But "Creeping Doom" is interesting.

Here is the original description:

<<<----------------------------------------

Caster Level(s): Druid 7
Innate Level: 7
School: Conjuration
Descriptor(s):
Component(s): Verbal, Somatic
Range: Medium
Area of Effect / Target: Large
Duration: 1 Round / Level
Additional Counter Spells:
Save: None
Spell Resistance: No

The caster summons a mass of biting and stinging insects
which causes 1d6 points of damage. For every subsequent
round that a creature remains within the area of effect, the
damage inflicted is increased by an increment of 1d6 (ie.
1d6 for the first round, 2d6 for the second, 4d6 for the
third, 7d6 for the fourth, and so on). The spell deals
damage until its duration expires or it deals 1,000 points
of damage.

---------------------------------------->>>



First, it says there is no Spell Resistance check done.
Untrue. A SR check is given as you step inside the AOE. But
after you are in, no more SR checks are done.
Initially it _had_ a SR check done every round. But at a
later date it was "patched" saying that the SR check is not
there by the "book" (the Player Hand Book -- PHB).
So the SR check from the Heartbeat event was commented out.
But they forgot to erase the SR check from the OnEnter
event.

Second, seemingly every Persistent AOE spell looks like
copied and adapted from "Acid Fog". Most, in fact, apply to
you a Movement Speed Decrease penalty of 50% -- a leftover
from copying Acid Fog.
Of course the MSD penalty is untold in the spell description
of Creeping Doom, as was untold in many others.

Third, not only they apply an effect that should not be
there (the MSD) but they then remove it in the wrong way, so
making that the exit from 1 Creeping Doom AOE does clear you
of all MSD penalties you accumulated from multiple Creeping
Dooms piled on each other.

Fourth, the AOE size is not "Large" (5 meters radius) like
the description says, but is "Huge" (6.67 meters radius)
like the 2DA defines.

Fifth, upon enterng the AOE you immediately suffer 1d20
damage. Untold in the description.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


The D&D Creeping Doom is much different. It is a "moving"
mass of 1000 insects. Each insect deals 1 point of damage,
then dies.
That is why they made the spell self-limit to 1000 damage.
The insects should spread equally among all targets they
find.

The problem: if only 1 target is found... he should suffer
1000 damage in 1 attack from all insects swarming to him.
The 3rd Ed. PHB is much unclear on this, so I may be wrong.

BioWare thought the original D&D spell did not fit in NWN.
I agree.

Even so, their NWN translation of the Creeping Doom is lame.
Poorly implemented, and poorly-er described.

The spell starts, and begins counting 1d6, +1d6 for each
round passed, _per_ each round.
If you enter the AOE at the 6th round, you immediately
suffer 1d20 (from entering) +16d6 damage (because is the 6th
round).

The spell was born in NWN, when 20 Levels was the max.
Spell lasts 1 Round per caster level.
So it was designed for 20 Rounds -- max 40 if Extended.

Let us see the damage built at each round:
-- 1d6 at 1st round.
-- 1d6 +1d6 = 2d6 at 2nd round.
-- 2d6 +2d6 = 4d6 at 3rd round.
-- 4d6 +3d6 = 7d6 at 4th round.
-- 7d6 +4d6 = 11d6 at 5th round...

Mechanizable with the formula:

RoundX = X * (X - 1) / 2 + 1.

Where "X" is the number of the Round.
In fact, for X = 20 we have:

20 * (20 - 1) / 2 + 1 = [191]d6 at the 20th round.

191d6 produces a damage range of [191 -- 1146].

It is perfect for 20 rounds and the 1000-limit.
But they broke the metamagic rules.
Extend Spell was supported.
Empower and Maximize were ignored.
A Maximized Tier 7 spell becomes Tier 10. Impossible.
But Empower would be legal.

With Extend metamagic they could prolong the spell to 40
rounds. With a ever growing damage it would be very likely
to *hit* the 1000-limit much before spell expiration.

In fact with X = 40 we get a range of [781 -- 4686].

With HOTU we have 40 Levels. Thus 40 caster levels.
So this spell can Extend to 80 rounds.

For X = 80... 80 * (80 - 1) / 2 + 1 = [3161]d6
A damage range of [3161 -- 18966]. Unspeakable!

And with my Metamagic we may also Empower and Maximize it.
Producing always 28449 damage at the 80th round.
Though we produce 1089 damage at the 16th round already.

So it has all become pointless.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Creeping Doom is rewritten completely.

The original NWN formula is too complex and over-powered.
It must be simpler, so Players can quickly see how their
spell will do.
And it must be much less powerful.

Thus:
Damage is modified into 1d20 upon entering the AOE.
At each round, 1d4+1 points of damage are dealt, per the
number of _consecutive_ rounds spent within the AOE.
So the more a target stays, the more damage he receives.
Makes sense. More insects crawl up your legs to bite.
Exiting the AOE "resets" the counter of rounds spent in.

(Open...
For realism, I suppose I should make female characters
scream horrified. The sight of a spider on their shin...
I joke -- haha
... closed)

More sense: Flying, Hoovering and Incorporeal creatures are
immune to this spell. They do not "touch" the insects.

So how much is the new 1d4+1 damage?

If you read it like Xd4+X, where X are the consecutive
rounds, we have:

-- 1d4 +1 at 1st round.
-- 2d4 +2 at 2nd round.
-- 3d4 +3 at 3rd round.
-- 4d4 +4 at 4th round.
-- 5d4 +5 at 5th round.
-- .
-- .
-- 20d4 +20 at 20th round.
-- .
-- .
-- 40d4 +40 at 40th round.
-- .
-- .
-- 80d4 +80 at 80th round.

It starts small, and grows with each new round.
It may take a while, but always gains the ability to pass
any amount of Damage Reduction / Damage Resistance.

I remove the 1000 max damage self-limit.

Full metamagic applies.

The spell target filter is "Standard Hostile", of course.
So if your name is not Green, you can be prey of your spell.

The insects have a Piercing Attack -- physical damage
typical of pointy blades (like the "Rapier").
I give the insects a base Attack Bonus of +1.

Spell Focus feats in Conjuration school will upgrade it:
- Spell Focus: +3 attack bonus.
- Greater Spell Focus: +5 attack bonus.
- Epic Spell Focus: +10 attack bonus.

The spell can target Creatures, Doors, Placeables.
Good to bash-open a fortified or trapped chest / door.
I suppose insects eat anything.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Only 3 more Druid Spells, and 1 Ability to go.
Then Druids become 100% usable, and only Clerics remain.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 26-Sep-09, 03:25:39
And put an end to your _dreams_ of meeting her??
What kind of monster do you think I am?

Haha. Check your e-mail.
I sent the new version of my Spells.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 24-Sep-09, 14:34:38
I don't suppose you could re-script the real world and merge Lindsay Price into my life could you ??
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 24-Sep-09, 02:08:56
Hello!

I have moved back to my previous position.
I am SO happy. And tasting a home made apple-pie as we speak.
A courtesy of Miss Genna's mother. Blessed woman.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


I have been working on my Spells in these days.
One more major achievment for the mighty fox.
I have defeated ALL bugs related to the polymorphing spells
and abilities.

This new medal goes directly to shine on my jacket.
Along with the previous ones -- haha.

To list all the polymorph-problems, and to explain each,
requires a speech so long that your browser may take an hour to
load the page.
No joke. I may write a book on the polymorphing alone.

So I make a super-synth speech.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Have you ever heard of the "Shifter-bug" ?
The Shifter is the "Shifter Prestige Class".
The peculiar abilities of the Shifter are all about polymorphing
to several shapes, each granting this or that cool advantage.
All of these abilities share an untold detail that only the
most informed are aware of.

Your pre-shift equipment -more precisely: its item properties-
can "merge" with the equipment that you get post-shift.

To make example, if you carry a Longsword with +1d6 Fire
bonus damage, this bonus can be transferred to the melee
weapon carried by the new form you shift into.
Of course there are rules to govern this mechanism.

The "shifter-bug" is about such merging of your equipment.
After a Character Export, in fact, polymorphed Players would
notice that they become less effective in combat.
In fact the Export makes them lose part of the item properties
that did merge with the new-form equipment when they shifted.

You may have many questions about this. Rest assured I have a
"because" for every "why". But it is too much to tell.

The problem has root within an old quick-fix that BioWare
introduced in one of the earlier patches.

The was a very old bug, in fact, that would corrupt your
Character if it was exported while in a polymorphed state.
Apparently, your True HP amount would be saved incorrectly.
At the next login, you would discover that your character had
many more HPs that he should. The extra HPs were from the
the Constitution boost you had during your polymorphed state.
The game would incorrectly mistake that for your true amount.
And it would save & fix it, forever.
So at each new Export-when-polymorphed, you would grow and
grow your total HPs.

This exploit was so huge that BioWare intervened at EXE level.
The fix was: the NWN game would briefly return you to your original
form, then perform the export, then auto-shift you back to your
previous polymorphed state.

But this fix introduced a cart of bugs...

First, during this double polymorph, not all of your polymorphed
equipment would be saved and restored.
That is how you would lose your precious item properties.

Second, if the polymorphed state you were in had any Temporary
Hit Points (THP), after the Export you would see your Health
Bar instantly refilled, with all THPs as well, as if you just
polymorphed anew.
In combat this could be exploited by a Player.
At each manual Export, in fact, he would return to 100% HP & THP.

Third, it was hard-coded in the NWN game that when a polymorph
effect would come to an end, a Visual and Sound clue would be
played to signal you that the polymorph ended.
This would repeat at each new Export, thus becoming so very
annoying to the Player.

Fourth, a moment before the Export, your polymorph effect would
be removed by the game, and -along with it- any other effect
that was linked to it (linking of effects is a common practice
employed in almost every spell-script).
But after the export, ONLY the polymorph effect would be reapplied.
What effects were removed with it --> lost forever.

So you understand, all these problems actually made the Shifter
Class useless online, because it was screwed up at each Export.

The idea of "merging" of equipment was later applied to some of
the Druid polymorphing abilities too. Thus, Druids as well ended
up being unused online.


There are many many more glitches and bugs that I am not telling.
The above 4 are biggest, and those you can notice by observation
of what happens in game.


Trace a big X on all the above problems :-)


I have implemented the flawless Polymorph System, and its cousin
the Character Export System.
Two gems of engineering, might I add.

The requisites to use them are two:

1) The Server Application must _not_ perform any export.
2) Players must _not_ manually export their Character when in
a polymorphed state.

The Module will take care of doing it at regular intervals.
All is decided by the Admin / DM.
The Exports can be made "silent" (no Console echo to annoy Players).
Or they can be made verbose (and the console will tell each Player when
his Character is exported).

The feature can be enabled/modified/disabled at play-time.
But a DM is required for it. Players can not do it.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


While working on all this, I took the time to rewrite the "merging"
rules.
I have improved them, and made them more logical and consistent.
I have also updated the many polymorph spells and abilities
descriptions, so you are always told which parts of your equipment
can merge.


But I could not write all details in the descriptions. Too many.
I shall list them here.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


The first thing to know, is that when you polymorph to something,
like a Dragon, you have items equipped in your inventory slots.
These are the "Creature Items". You can not see them in inventory,
because there is no GUI to reach them. But they are there.

Nearly every monster in game has these items, and you may have seen
them in the Toolset if you explored a monster Inventory window.

The creature items are 4:
- Creature Weapon Right (equipped in right hand)
- Creature Weapon Left (in left hand)
- Creature Weapon Bite (the mouth)
- Creature Skin/Hide (the "back" of the creature)

Technically these items can be equipped by a Player Character too.
But there is no "Equip" command for them. Only a script may do it.

If you can not see these items in your inventory (when polymorphed),
how do you tell when they are equipped or not?

Easy.
Open you Character Sheet. You may read something like:
Attack 1: 2-12 +8 (Critical 20 x2)
Attack 2: 2-12 +8 (Critical 20 x2)
Attack 3: 2-12 +8 (Critical 20 x2)

Each such "Attack #" indicates the presence of a Creature Weapon.
You can not tell for sure _which_ Creature Weapons you got.
But you can tell for sure _how many_ you got (from 0 to 3).

As for the Creature Skin/Hide, this one is omni-present.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Now about the "merging" rules.
The previous BioWare rules were most lacking. And often they would
be willingly broken or ignored by the original scripters.
I will tell _my_ rules, which are far superior to BioWare rules.

There are 3 main groups of "merging" equipment.
They are called:
- "Weapons"
- "Armors"
- "Accessories"

My "weapons" group includes:
- Primary Weapon (on right hand).
- Off-Hand Weapon (on left hand).
- Monk Gloves (on the arms).

My "Armors" group includes:
- Helmet.
- Body Armor (what you put on the Chest).
- Shield (on left hand).
- Bracer (on the arms).

My "Accessories" group includes:
- Amulet
- Rings (both Left and Right)
- Belt
- Boots
- Cloak

Ammunitions (Arrows, Bolts, Bullets) are ignored.


First, the "merging" of the Accessories. This is easy.
All your item properties found on all your equipped accessories
shall be mirrored onto your Creature Skin/Hide.
No exceptions.

For merging of Armors, these too are all merged with your
Creature Skin/Hide. No exceptions.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


The merging of Weapons is a little more complex.

Most polymorphing spells shape you into some beast. Like a dragon.
And you get no "visible" equipment.
But some polymorphing spells shape you into a creature with some
standard item equipped.
The spell "Tenser's Transformation" is example: Tenser comes with
a Longsword equipped (and you can see it in your inventory panel).


The merging of my "Weapons" group will give precedence to the
standard weapons you got equipped (if any) once polymorphed.
If you have a Longsword in your right hand, your Primary weapon will
merge with that.
No need to be a Longsword, of course. So long it is a "melee" weapon,
your pre-shift Longsword (or any other "melee" type) shall merge with
it.

But Melee with Melee -- and Ranged with Ranged.
If you have a Shortbow in your right hand, your Primary Weapon will
not merge with it, unless it too is a Ranged weapon.
Makes sense?

No "throwable" weapons will merge. Things like Darts, Shurikens, and
Throwing Axes are ignored by my "Weapons" group.

What happens if you have no weapon equipped in your new form?
In that case, your weapons will merge with the Creature Weapons: Right
and Left.
Your Primary weapon with the Creature Weapon Right.
Your Off-Hand Weapon with the Creature Weapon Left.
Logical.

So if you have no Primary nor Off-Hand weapon equipped, nothing will
merge with your Creature Weapons Right and Left. Is that so?
No.
Your Monk Gloves -if equipped- can merge with _both_ Creature Weapons.

And regardless of all said above, your Gloves will always merge with
the Creature Weapon Bite.
If you got Gloves and Bite, of course.
I can not merge what does not exist. Makes sense :-)

So you may be a Druid/Monk. You may wield dual Kamas + Monk Gloves.
And maybe you polymorph to a shape with all 3 Creature Weapons.

Your Primary Kama would merge with the Creature Weapon Right.
Your Off-hand Kama would merge with the Creature Weapon Left.
Your Monk Gloves would merge with the Creature Weapon Bite.

If you had no Off-Hand Weapon, but you had Primary Kama and Gloves...
Your Primary Kama would merge with the Creature Weapon Right.
Your Monk Gloves would merge with the Creature Weapon Left.
Your Monk Gloves would merge with the Creature Weapon Bite.

So the Monk Gloves are the "last resort" to merge.
But Monk Gloves are also the only thing that can merge with the Bite.

Got it all?
I tried to make it follow a logic. Hope the outcome is "simple".


I have made extensive tests with these new merging rules.
I can say that with the right equipment, and the right shape taken,
a Druid or Shifter become a super-threat!


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Druids and Shifters are now so blessed by my scripts (they should send
me bunnies to no end!), that I thought it fair to improve further the
three polymorphing spells:

- Polymorph Self
- Tenser's Transformation
- Shapechange

Truth must be told, they never "shined" -- Now they do ;-)

I have added Spell Focus support to them.
All 3 belong to the Transmutation spell school.

Thus with:
- Spell Focus (Transmutation) : Armors will merge.
- Greater Spell Focus (Transmutation) : Weapons will merge as well.
- Epic Spell Focus (Transmutation) : Accessories will merge as well.

Then I have tested them.
A Tenser's Transformation with Epic Spell Focus, could polymorph my
Wizard into a real killer. Oh, the power...
Good thing it is time-limited. It would be a cheat otherwise.

Tenser is now the "engine of destruction" the spell-description says.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Oh. I have perfectioned the Spell-Scrolls Description update system.
In the next release of my Spells, you will get this too.

This update should close the cycle of fixes to make my Spells work in
large modules.
Unless more problems are discovered, I can resume the main task and
make improvements to the remaining spells and abilities.


I shall send to NOVA this new release in some days.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-Aug-09, 17:52:28
Hello.

I continue to shrink the size of my scripts, yet add more functionality to them.
So far I have "culled" away 1.2 MB of compiled code total.
Knowing that NWN uses a Script Cache only 3000 KB in size, it should give you idea of the improvement.

(Open...
By the way. The caching mechanism went automated with the recent patches -from 1.67 I believe-.
But the GUI interface to "manually" fill this Cache is still found in the Toolset.
It is recommended you leave the Cache empty. Always.
And if it is not empty, you make it so.
What scripts you may place-in shall interfere with the auto-caching done in-game.
And likely hinder the performance, instead of boosting it.
The Script Cache is found in: Edit menu -> Module Properties -> Cached Scripts tab.
... closed)



More bugs got fixed in the process. Minor things.
But one is worth mention:


The "Elemental Swarm" spell is now flawlessly handled by my Dispel System.

And the 4 chain-spawned Elementals will now appear in random sequence too.
So you no longer predict what you get.

If any of these Elementals is killed or manually Unsummoned, a new one will replace it, until all have made their appearance.
Or until the spell fades by natural expiration.
Or the Caster uses another Summoning spell.
Or the Caster dies.
Or the Caster takes a Resting.
Or bunnies begin to hunt foxes.

If the Caster (thus, Master) of these Summoned creatures is dispelled, and the Elemental Swarm spell is removed, his current Elemental is unsummoned and no replacement will appear.
Makes sense?

Conversely, if any of the 4 Elementals is dispelled directly: the spell is removed, the present Elemental is Unsummoned, and no replacement will appear.
Makes sense.


My logic is flawless.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 28-Aug-09, 18:44:24
Hello.

Epic Blinding Speed is now 3 UsesPerDay.
No auto-blind feature. It felt overpowered.
A character with the DEX to take the feat is a capable warrior already.


I fixed a few more things:

I did forget to adjust the "Shades: Wall of Fire" spell (shadow variant of Wall of Fire).
Done.


--------------------
Several spells check if target is an Outsider.
Standard spells only checked for the Racial Type.
I did add to the check the clause: Monk(20+).
Now I improved the filter more.
Outsiders will be recognized by Class as well (the proper "Outsider" Class).
And they will be recognized by subrace too (if they have word "outsider" in it).
Done.


--------------------
Then I made a pair of huge improvements.
The exact details are of technical nature.
But the end result is that my spells are now compiled to be ~9.05 KB smaller than before.
Yes, 9.05 KB less per-spell! (on average).
This will ensure the game makes better caching of the scripts used.
They will consume less memory.
They will benefit from reduced access-times.
Collaterally, they will perform faster.
So it means: my Spells impact less on game performance, yet they do all they did before.
A little magic ;-)


--------------------
I improved the speed of other minor things.


--------------------
Mostly I am re-engineering my systems these days.
But I find the time for some spells now and then.

I have adjusted the "Implosion" spell.
Much used by many monsters and outsider spellcasters.

I also fixed its spell-description.
It now correctly states the spell uses a DC increased by +3 (previously untold detail).
Implosion is a powerful Level 9 Instant-Death spell, available to Clerics.


--------------------
Some more spells got fixed.
But I do not have the log to consult right now.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Aug-09, 02:21:52
I have improved the Epic Feat: Epic Blinding Speed.

Usually you do not take it because of the DEX 25+ required.
And its Haste lasts 10 rounds only. And is 1 UsePerDay.
Dispellable too.

I changed it.
Now lasts 10 rounds, +1 round every 2 _character_ levels past 20.
And I make it undispellable.

It is still 1 UsePerDay.
I want to improve it more.

Would you prefer more charges (I think MAX 3 UsesPerDay)?

Or would you prefer a "special"?
Upon Feat activation, a smokey puff explodes from you.
Feat name is "Blinding" Speed.
So... is it out-of-place if I make the Feat auto-blind the foes in close proximity to you (when you activate it)?

Maybe I will do both things...


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Aug-09, 20:21:08
I need those tests. Test #1 is so important.
But I understand what you say.

We can work this from the "other end", maybe.
You said you have a Fighter(17). Use that.

One requirement stays: Minimum 2 players online.
Other requirements: None.

The test:

Find some NPC caster, enemy, who can cast Acid Fog.
The NPC can be any level, so long he casts Acid Fog at you.
Wait until he does, and wait the fog appears on the ground.

Then kill the NPC as fast as you can.
Use of harsh language is authorized.

You are not required to bathe in the fog.
But if you do: +1d4 Acid Damage to your weaponry (for a brief while).

I expect the fog to dissolve with the death of its caster.
This happens within 1 round after death.
If it does, the test is a Success.

If the fog survives 3 or more rounds, the test is clearly Failed.

Either way I obtain answers from it.
Can it be done?


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 23-Aug-09, 15:45:14
I got the files.

Holy crapola, those are some detailed instructions. Easy you say, eh. Perhaps for you that is true. But you're dealing with a moron here ---->ME<----

I'll do the best I can to incorporate this beta spell set into Nordock. As to the testing you requested, not sure how soon that can be done. You are the only one who plays spellcasters and Nordock is TOUGH to level characters very fast even on EASY setting. My Fighter has been building for almost a month just to get past level 17. But I'll do my best.

Testing has to be done with difficulty set to HardCore eh? Yikes, Nordock is scripted to play as hardcore all the time, I shutter to think of the combination of those scripts PLUS the slider bar set to hardcore as well. It may create a difficulty black hole and suck every player character into the abyss.

Thank you for sending me the files. I hope I can do justice to them and to all your hard work.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Aug-09, 13:13:42
You mis-understand :-)

Sent copy of my Spells to NOVA -- 2 minutes ago.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 21-Aug-09, 18:40:10
But... Why no allow NOVA to apply your current test version to the Nordock module he is modifying? Sounds like Nordock would be a better test environment (because its made for rpg). Or is this not possible?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 21-Aug-09, 18:12:13
There is a change of plans.
The Biased DC idea is not so quick and easy as I made it sound.

My fault I did not consider all aspects before.
I started the modification, and discovered technical problems in the process.
So disappointing :-(
There is always this or that "catch" ready to slow me.

One such problem *appears* to be unsolvable.
I can not claim it is, nor the opposite.
It requires investigation just to understand if a workaround exists.
Thus, Time.
Then _more_ Time to develop and apply a working solution -- if any.

So... I put the Biased DC idea on hold.
And I will make the Beta release as I told.

Give me some days to pack my files in a decent form.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Aug-09, 18:06:48
Hello NOVA.

You assume good.
Did a trip at home, on a short vacation. Brought back my very own Laptop.
They can relocate me all they want, this Laptop shall travel with me.
I am scheduled to go back to my previous position by mid September anyway.
(and taste more home-made pies from Miss Genna's mother -- Haha)

I am willing to release my modifications. Soon.
In fact I need answers, and can only come from online play.
I anticipate some specific spells (the fogs and the clouds), online *may* behave incorrectly.
A LAN game does not generate enough "delay" to trigger these suspect behaviors.
I have a fix ready, but it is laborious to apply.
That is why I want confirmation first.

So the release I will make will be a "Beta".
Not suitable for the Vault.
Usable, working for the biggest part, only not 100% complete.
So yes, you will be the first to receive it.
And be free to share it with anyone you trust.

I ask for "feedback" in return. What works, what does not work, completely, or not at all.
I can fix any problem *if* I get informed of it.

As for the "Biased DC" System: it is ready.
Simple tasks are quick to code.
Now I have to update the spells, so they make use of it.
Relatively fast job.
When it is done I release the Beta.


Currently, the 100% working spellcast Classes are:
- Bard
- Paladin
- Ranger
- Sorcerer
- Wizard

Druids are almost complete.
Clerics will take longer.

The Prestige Classes who cast some kind of spell (Harper Scout, Backguard, Assassin...) are already done.
They cast spells who copy True spells I already fixed. Automatic job.

I also bugfixed the Arcane Archer feats: Seeker Arrow I (and II), Death Arrow, Imbue Arrow, Hail of Arrows.
They work much better now. Using a Longbow instead of a Shortbow will make a difference.
The "Mighty +X" itemproperty of your bow is now _correctly_ taken into account.
If you happen to target yourself with these feats, the attempt will fail and the "lost" UsesPerDay is restored.
Et cetera.
But these are temporary fixes. The feats should be trashed and reinvented completely.
Being completely scripted, there is lot of room for improvements.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 19-Aug-09, 15:57:41
That sounds AWESOME.

Can I assume from this that you were able to successfully recover all (or most) of your previous work on spell modifications? I certainly hope that is true.

I've moved past the Rhun module and am now hosting a slightly modified version of the Nordock public release v1.70. This module is much more balanced regarding monster challenge versus the player characters (some might even say the favor has swung to the monsters' benefit). It's an old module (circa 2002) so it does not include any of the expansion material nor any CEP material. The module certainly has a boat load of issues and problems (what part of real life is ever perfect). Despite these faults, the module is still quite interesting and fun. It is certainly a vast departure from the template of most other NWN modules.

At any rate, at some point I hope you will be willing and able to release all your hard work so that we can all enjoy the fruits of your labor. The NWN Vault would be an excellent place to house your masterpiece. Or if you prefer a more individualized distribution, I would certainly hope I was on your short list because I definitely want to use your modifications.

However and whatever you choose to do, know that I have enjoyed partaking in your NWN knowledge and I look forward to each of your forum posts.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 18-Aug-09, 11:38:28
Hello.
Big post.

In my last post in another thread I outlined the "physical" limits of spellcasters, DC and the spell system.
To make a synth, the best spellcaster ever (Epic Wizard(40), no less) can give his spells a max DC of 45.
Monsters who resist easily to such DCs, are virtually invincible to all spells.

Few spells make exceptions to the general rule, and tweak the True DC they have, via script.
Example is the "Greater Planar Binding" arcane spell. It boosts its own DC by +5, thus a super Wizard can shoot one such spell at DC 50.
Such exceptions are few indeed. Only a handful of spells (like 7 out of 400) in the game applies a modification to its own base DC.

When I started making my modifications to the spells system, I did it because of the Rhun module and its super monsters who possessed out-of-ordinary saving throws.
Best example of all are the Matron Mothers, and their saves of... 100.
(why not give them a killer gaze to WHAZZAPP spellcasters? Wizard approaches -> ZAPP! -> Wizard *poof*)

My new spells are -for most part- the same as the original ones (save for the avalanche of bugfix I applied).
They have gained more power. In some case much more.
But their DC is still the same of the standard spell system.
I have also modified the Spell Resistance system (took total control of it) and made spells easier to resist, in general.
The tests I conducted with it, show that the Amateur Sunday Spellcaster *will* have a difficult time with my spells.
But if the Spellcaster get serious about his job, then the *target* will have a difficult time with my spells.
It is so flawless that no word can tell.

So the DC is the 1 problem left. I have a fix for it, no less.
I am planning one more change, game-wide, to introduce support for Customizable DCs.

The idea is simple. The module admin opens the module, changes some numbers, saves the module, and goes to play.
My system takes care of the rest, with no need to recompile scripts or what.
Only the module administrator knows how to set those numbers.
He is supposed to know how difficult (or easy) his monsters are to spellcasters.

I have thought of 6 key values that should provide sufficient customization level to satisfy all needs.
Here they are:

-- Extra_base_DC
This is a value that is (+)added to, or (-)subtracted from, the base DC for an immediate permanent bias to ALL spell DCs.

-- Extra_DC_for_SpellFocus
By default, having a "Spell Focus" feat in the proper spell school raises the DC of all those school spells by +2.
It is a NWN internal rule.
This is a value that can be used to bias (+ or -) such DC bonus for having the "Spell Focus" feat.
For example, setting is at +1 makes Spell Focus add +3 DC to your spells.
Setting it at -2 makes Spell Focus add 0 DC (none) to spells. Et cetera.
(with my spells, the 3 Spell Focus feats add more than mere DC, so there is always a gain for having such feats)

-- Extra_DC_for_GreaterSpellFocus
Same exact workings as Spell Focus. Having this feat raises your DCs by another +2, cumulative.
So getting a Greater Spell Focus translates in your DCs to become +4.

-- Extra_DC_for_EpicSpellFocus
Like Spell Focus and Greater Spell Focus. Having this feat means getting a net +6 DC in all spells from the proper spell school.

-- Extra_DC_per_PreEpic_CasterLevels
PreEpic levels are [1 -- 20]. CasterLevels are the count of the classes you took in a spellcasting class.
I did explain this concept in an previous post in this same thread.
This value will work with your first 20 casterlevels, and translate them in a boost to your base DC (in all schools).
For example, setting it to 0.4 would give a boost of "X * 0.4", where X are your pre-Epic caster levels.
If you are a Cleric(20), you gain a +8 DC in all spells, just because you have 20 caster levels.
Being in decimal form, all kind of values are possible.
Setting it to 0.18, nets a Cleric(20) a DC boost of 20 * 0.18 = 3.6, rounded to +3 DC.
A Cleric(25) would count as a Cleric(20). This setting works with pre-Epic levels only.

-- Extra_DC_per_Epic_CasterLevels
This one is for the Epic levels [21 -- 40]. Same rules like the pre-Epic one.
A Cleric(20) would count as a Cleric(0). This setting is only for Epic levels.
A Cleric(25) would count as a Cleric(5). Et cetera.


Proper use of this system will render spells suitable to fight ANYTHING.
This should be nice for modders.
They can make their monsters, in any way they like, and then adjust the DC of the spells to allow spellcasters to fight and win.
It is certainly faster than making a monster, and then testing to see if he is within "reach" of spellcasters AND challenging for melee fighters.


How is that for an improvement?


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 21-Jul-09, 21:16:22
Sounds very sad Fox... Hope you are well. You paint circumstances I cannot immagine in a world where kids walk around with backups of everything on USB sticks or online sharing spaces. Let's hope things turn out well for you, both with your home and computer.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 20-Jul-09, 15:57:10
[b]--IMPORTANT--[/b]

Hello.

I imagine you wonder why I have been silent in the last days.

I have been relocated.
This relocation is temporary. So I have been said.
I shall return to my old place in few weeks. So I have been said.
More than this I cannot say.

But I can say I have no more access to my old computer, where my NWN and the modifications to it are.
That computer is not mine, you see.
As far as I can say, its content may have been junked already.

No worry.

I have seen enough stuff in my life to learn how to shield against disasters.
Fox for a reason...

In the unhappy case that I am not going back to my previous place (unlikely, but possible), or that my old computer is junk (likely, and possible) I have prepared a safety net.
My files are "mirrored" online to my mailbox.

Should I be unable to continue my NWN project, I will release complete copy of it.
So that someone else may continue it.

Current status was close to completion.
Only 11 Druid spells, and 31 Cleric spells remain.
Most of them are variants of spells from other classes, which were already fixed.

Of course, there are monster spells too.
I can not say how many they are. It is difficult to gauge.

Even if you are no expert scripter or have little understanding of C++, I have written enough scripts for anyone to examine and comprehend how things are done and _why_.
Continuing from there should be easy job.

But this shall happen only if I am sure I am not returning.
I am unsure. So there is hope :-)

I salute you all. For now.
I will look at this forum when time permits.

You may contact me at my mailbox, like before.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 28-Jun-09, 18:06:00
Hello.

----------------------------------------
I fixed the [b]Turn Undead[/b] ability.
Took me lot of time.

Part because I had little time to dedicate.
Part because the script was a bugged mess.

To list all problems makes no sense if I do not explain how Turn Undead works.
To explain how it works takes a big speech because of clauses and caveats.
So I pass.

I will say now it does what is supposed to do.
And the better your Cleric, the better your Turn Undead.
But this much you could get from the feat description too.
Sorry :-)

Worth mention is that I added to it the ability to turn Monk(20+) because they are Outsiders.
And they should be attempted to turn, like all Outsiders, when you possess either of the 3 feats:
- [b]Good Domain Powers[/b] (a Cleric domain)
- [b]Evil Domain Powers[/b] (a Cleric domain)
- [b]Planar Turning[/b] (epic feat).

[i](Open...
I lower the prerequisites for Planar Turning.
From: 25 Wisdom + 25 Charisma.
To: 19 Wisdom + 19 Charisma.
To ask 50 ability points for 1 single feat, is to ask to base a character build on _that_ feat alone.
Heresy.
If that feat is only partly useful VS a restrict group of foes (and junk VS the rest of the Universe), asking 38 points is next-to-heresy all the same.
But it is an Epic feat.
Makes life a little easier VS Outsiders.
The requirements can be met before level 21.
The 3 classes who may take the feat have an interest in both Abilitites anyway.
My logic is flawless.
... close)[/i]

Turn Undead works with Hit Dice.
It considers both the HD of the caster and the HD of the targets to do its job.
I make sure that nobody gets an HD amount above 40.
So the AI can have no advantage over players.

I also make so that the "Turning" scales to Epic levels.
Little improvement, I admit. But better than nothing.


----------------------------------------
I modified: [b]Prayer[/b]

All allies in range get +1 to Attack and Damage rolls, Saving Throws, and all Skills.
All enemies in range get the reverse.

We can say it is a lesser version of the Bard Song and Curse Song.

I added to it support for Spell Focus feats in Conjuration school.
Each will improve the bonus/penalty by 1.

Not a real bug, at most a bad choice, but the original Prayer would consider "enemies" all "hostiles", and give them penalties.
There is no difference in Game Difficulty below D&D Hardcore.
But there is lot of difference in Game Difficulty above Normal.

Targeting all hostiles may affect neutral NPCs you care for.
They would feel threatened by your spell, and respond by attacking you.
Spells that are *not* exclusively employed in malevolent ways should never target "hostiles".
Fixed.

Someday I will explain the differences between "ally", "hostile" and "enemy".
They have precise meanings in NWN, and tell you what target "filter" is used by the spells you cast.
Of course, in my updated spell descriptions I make correct use of these 3 words.


----------------------------------------
I have rewritten: [b]Deafening Clang[/b]

Original OnHit script was most bugged.
I counted 10 between "bugs" and "bad ideas".

So I rewrite it.
There is no SR check. There is no Saving Throw.
Target creature is deafened for 1 round if she is not Immune to Deafness and not already deafened.

When the creature is deafened, you get a visual feedback, and a console message.

Rest of spell is the same:
-- +1 attack bonus to your weapon
-- +3 Sonic bonus damage to your weapon
-- 100% chance to Deaf a creature when you strike her


----------------------------------------
I have modified: [b]Bless Weapon[/b]

The spell description did not say it, but you could use it this to bless a pack of Crossbow Bolts to Slay-Rakshaasas.
Exactly like the spell [b]Bless[/b] does (when used on Bolts).
I have removed this functionality.
To bless Bolts, you can cast Bless.

Used on a creature or a melee weapon, the spell would add:
-- +1 Enhancement Bonus
-- +2d6 Divine damage vs. Undead

I increased the enhancement bonus to +2.


----------------------------------------
Paladin spells and abilities are finished.
That makes 5 working core classes.

Druid and Cleric remain.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 26-Jun-09, 16:28:42
Hello.

[b]Holy Sword[/b] is fixed.
And the "Holy Avenger" item property is substituted with _my_ version of it.
This was challenging :-)

My version too can be used to make Permanent Holy Avenger weapons.
And like original itemproperty it only works in the hands of a Paladin.

The bonuses received from my Holy Avenger are:

-- +5 Enhancement Bonus
-- +1d6 Divine damage vs. Evil
-- +1d6 Divine damage vs. Lawful Evil
-- 16 Spell Resistance
-- OnHit Cast "Dispel Magic" on target

The "Dispel Magic" reiceves a bonus to dispel-check based on Paladin class level, but limited at +10. So this dispel magic may not dispel anything cast by a mage(20+).
Chances to cast are like original: 25%

Note the "vs Lawful Evil" damage bonus.
When you fight a Lawful Evil creature, you strike with +1d6 Divine damage.
And because a "Lawful Evil" is also "Evil", you strike with another +1d6 Divine damage.

Originally I thought to make it "vs. Chaotic". But too many creatures are both Evil and Chaotic. So it was often a happy +2d6 Divine vs half the monsters you meet.
So I chose the alignment opposite to that of the Paladin, which is "Lawful Evil", a creature that lives to do Bad (Paladins live to do Good).


I enforce a rule I crafted, because I see the Paladin has spells that mainly focus on enchanting weapons with all kind of extra damage.

The rule is: only 1 spell enchantment per weapon.
You try to add a 2nd one (of any type, from anyone) to your weapon, and the spell fails.

This has a good impact on gameplay. You are forced to seek better gear, with as many enhancements you value. So that then you only "add" the 1 most important missing enhancement, via spell.

It is also better for module builders. Now they can make items with different enchantment configurations and "scatter" them on their module, for players to find.
Before, instead, having multiple enchantment configurations was of little sense, because players could stack several spells to turn a useless piece of metal into a +5 weapon, with added fire damage, divine damage, keen, magical damage, you name the rest.



----------------------------------------
I changed the spell: [b]Divine Favor[/b]


Original D&D spell would add +6 enhancement bonus to the character.
Damage type of such bonus in not specified.
But in NWN you *must* have a damage type, and they chose the Magical damage.
Also, in NWN they limited the spell to +1 enhancement bonus every 3 caster levels, MAX +5, because (at the time) the game-engine had limitations that today has not.

I *could* add a proper +6 enhancement bonus.
But it stacks with any and all previous bonuses to damage the Paladin can have.
But +6 Magical is a silver bullet. No good.

So I modify the spell.
The Enhancement Bonus is +1 per every 5 caster levels, MAX +3.
Magical damage, like before.
Spell duration is now 2 Turns, and not 1.
Extendable if you have the metamagic feat.

Spell name is "Divine Favor", so I make the gods smile on you, and gift you with Immunity to Sneak Attacks for the duration of the spell (which can be 4 Turns total).



----------------------------------------
More spells and abilities are work in progress.
I will tell when they are complete and tested.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Jun-09, 22:37:26
I know Fox, I know :)
We just don't always agree hehe.

e.g. Time Stop: You find it a defensive spell, where I would allow the ai-caster not only to cast offensive spells but also to attack physically. In fact I find the spell completely useless, if its only for defence because the AI never takes advantage of the extra time it got...
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Jun-09, 22:28:57
Hello Albadaran.

The fact you may pay no attention to those feats does not cancel that they exist, can be taken, and do morph you into the "endlevel boss" you speak of.

Be sure I do not waste my time on what is worth no attention ;-)

The scripts I am writing are meant to make a balanced spell-system.
That, and every collateral thing that "revolves" around the concept.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Jun-09, 19:28:13
Ehm, I'm not very good in this but I think that most monks hardly pay attention to the feats you mention. What I see is that they spend their feats on increasing HP as much as possible. In fact most monks play like bare handed fighters.

It is all about making choices. NwN has a lot of damage types. It's impossible to prevent them all. And many players find it not useful to prevent a few... So they go for high HP, high absorb, high healthreg: the easiest way to cover it all! Than add sets of equipment for nasty damage types they encounter, switch whenever necessary and if its a monk, just run very fast; the only encounter to winn is the endlevel boss...
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Jun-09, 18:46:43
Hello.
I have an idea to improve the usefulness of Spell Resistance.
Much to say -> long speech.


My goals are 3:
[b]1)[/b] to make Spell Resistance checks a harder to win for spellcasters.
[b]2)[/b] to make lower Spell Resistance values more useful.
[b]3)[/b] to make Monks life harder VS spells.



----------------------------------------
First I make introduction.
I will refer to Player Characters, which are limited to 40 levels.
AI Characters may go up to level 60, but _my_ scripts will treat them like they are level 40, like a player.
So the AI gets no advantage over players.



----------------------------------------
You know the current Spell Resistance check formula is:

[i][1d20 + CasterLevel + SpellPenetration] >= [TargetSpellResistance][/i]

It tends to favor the spellcaster.
Note the [i]SpellPenetratin[/i] sub-term.
It is a bonus to CasterLevel, granted by 3 specific feats:

- Spell Penetration (+2 bonus, +2 total)
- Greater Spell Penetration (+2 bonus, +4 total)
- Epic Spell Penetration (+2 bonus, +6 total)

First 2 feats are pre-epic, available to any Class with a spellbook that can cast 1st level spells.
The 3rd feat is Epic, only available to Wizards and Sorcerers.
And only if they possess [i]Greater Spell Penetration[/i] already.

There is something *unclear* about [i]Epic Spell Penetration[/i].
It is not told if the bonus is +2 (+6 total), or if it is +6 (+10 total).

Greater Spell Penetration substitutes Spell Penetration.
Epic Spell Penetration *should* substitute Greater Spell Penetration.

But you look at your feat list, you see Epic Spell Penetration does not substitute Greater Spell Penetration.
The two feats co-exist... does it mean they _stack_? (so it is +6, +10 total?)

The sure answer does not exist.
It could be a bug in the feat settings.
Or could be how things are meant to work (in NWN), and the feat description is incomplete.


Why is this so important?

As you know the Monk class can build impressive Spell Resistance.
How much can it be?
At level 12 the Monk receives the feat "Diamond Soul", to build a Spell Resistance equal to: [i]MonkClassLevel +10[/i]
So a level 40 Monk gets a Spell Resistance of 50.
Epic Monks have 11 chances to get Epic feats.
10 such feats can be [i]Improved Spell Resistance[/i], each giving +2 Spell Resistance, total +20.
So the maximum a Monk can have is 70 Spell Resistance.

Looking at the Spell Resistance formula, we see that a Epic mage(40) with Epic Spell Penetration scores:
[i]1d20 + 40 + 6[/i]

Which outputs values in the range: [47 -- 66]
66 is the maximum. And it is 4 points below the Monk maximum Spell Resistance of 70.
So... if this is the correct formula, a Monk can achieve immunity VS almost all spells.

Back to the question: does Epic Spell Penetration stack, or does it overlap?
If stacks, it adds +10 points total.
If overlaps, it adds +6 points total.

The "gap" is... 4 points.
They would be the 4 points the epic mage(40) needs to score a spell penetration term of [51 -- 70], and be granted a 5% chance (1 of 20) to pierce the super Monk Spell Resistance of 70.

Is this a big coincidence?
Or is what really happens?

In any case, only a super Wizard or super Sorcerer could reach a Spell Penetration of 66 (or 70).




----------------------------------------
When thinking to all this, I had my idea.

First, I change the bonus to CasterLevel from the Spell Penetration feats.
As follow:

- Spell Penetration (+3 bonus, +3 total)
- Greater Spell Penetration (+3 bonus, +6 total)
- Epic Spell Penetration (+6 bonus, +12 total)


Second, I modify the Spell Resistance check formula in:

[i][1d20 + CasterLevel + SpellPenetration] >= [[b]Base +[/b] TargetSpellResistance][/i]

See the "Base" sub-term?
It will obey 3 rules:

[b]Rule #1)[/b]
If the target has 0 Spell Resistance, Base is equal to 0.

[b]Rule #2)[/b]
If the target has any Spell Resistance > 0, Base is equal to 4.

[b]Rule #3)[/b]
If the target has the "Diamond Soul" feat, Base is equal to 0 (overrides rule #2).

So easy :-)



----------------------------------------
So things change. Can a mage "win" the check more easily or not?
I make examples.

Case 1.
A mage(1), with no spell penetration bonus, VS a creature with 0 Spell Resistance.
NWN rule: the SR check would have been: [2 -- 21] >= [0] (100% chance to win)
Fox rule: the SR check becomes: [2 -- 21] >= [0] (100% chance to win)
In this case nothing changes.

Case 2.
A mage(1), with no spell penetration bonus, VS a creature with 10 SR.
NWN rule: [2 -- 21] >= [10] (60% chance to win)
Fox rule: [2 -- 21] >= [14] (40% chance to win)

Case 3.
A mage(1), with "Spell Penetration" feat, VS a creature with 10 SR.
NWN rule: [4 -- 23] >= [10] (70% chance to win)
Fox rule: [5 -- 24] >= [14] (55% chance to win)

Case 4.
A mage(3), with "Greater Spell Penetration" feat, VS a creature with 10 SR.
NWN rule: [8 -- 27] >= [10] (90% chance to win)
Fox rule: [10 -- 29] >= [14] (80% chance to win)

Case 5.
A mage(12), with "Greater Spell Penetration" feat, VS a Monk(12) with 22 SR.
NWN rule: [17 -- 36] >= [22] (75% chance to win)
Fox rule: [19 -- 38] >= [22] (85% chance to win)

Case 6.
A mage(20), with "Greater Spell Penetration" feat, VS a creature with 30 SR.
NWN rule: [25 -- 44] >= [30] (75% chance to win)
Fox rule: [27 -- 46] >= [34] (65% chance to win)

Case 7.
A mage(20), with "Greater Spell Penetration" feat, VS a Monk(20) with 30 SR.
NWN rule: [25 -- 44] >= [30] (75% chance to win)
Fox rule: [27 -- 46] >= [30] (85% chance to win)

Case 8.
A mage(21), with "Epic Spell Penetration" feat, VS a creature with 32 SR.
NWN rule: [28 -- 47] >= [32] (80% chance to win)
Fox rule: [34 -- 53] >= [36] (90% chance to win)

[i]At this point, no item can give you above 32 Spell Resistance.
If you want more (and you are no Monk) you need help from a Epic Cleric or Druid.[/i]

Case 9.
A mage(40), with "Epic Spell Penetration" feat, VS a Monk(40) with 50 SR.
NWN rule: [47 -- 66] >= [50] (85% chance to win)
Fox rule: [53 -- 72] >= [50] (100% chance to win)

Case 10.
A mage(40), with "Epic Spell Penetration" feat, VS a Monk(40) with 70 SR.
NWN rule: [47 -- 66] >= [70] (0% chance to win) [b](*)[/b]
Fox rule: [53 -- 72] >= [70] (15% chance to win)

[i][b](*)[/b] = Or 5% chance if "Epic Spell Penetration" stacks with "Greater Spell Penetration".[/i]



----------------------------------------
Summary:

From target point-of-view...
- Life is harder for Monks.
- Easier for non-Monks.
- Items providing any Spell Resistance are more useful.

From spellcaster point-of-view...
- Easier to pierce the Monk Spell Resistance.
- Harder to pierce the non-Monk Spell Resistance.
- Spell Penetration feats are more useful.

Do you like it?



----------------------------------------
I add a final touch.
Remember I did modify the 2 spells "Lesser Spell Breach" and "Greater Spell Breach"?
They are spells available to Wizards and Sorcerers only.
I made so that if they get past your Spell Resistance, they drop it to 0 for 1 or 2 turns.

I change the breachers again.
If the target creature is an "Outsider", his working Spell Resistance VS the 2 breachers is only [b]half[/b].
So if the outsider has 32 Spell Resistance, he counts as if he has 16.
This is in "tune" with the purpose of the breachers: to lower all your defenses VS spells.

The new behavior helps the breachers to get past the usually big Spell Resistance of outsiders.

My spells correclty treat creatures with 20 or more levels in Monk Class as "Outsiders".
So Monks have one more reason to fear Wizards and Sorcerers.



----------------------------------------
I conclude with a side-note for module builders:

The feat "Diamond Soul" grants Spell Resistance equal to "MonkClassLevel +10".
The Toolset permits you to give monsters this feat, even if they are no monks, or monks of level below 12.
Be aware that the "MonkClassLevel" part of the bonus is honored: if the creature is no "Monk", she gets no bonus from it.
But do know that the "+10" part of the bonus is applied to anyone with this feat.

So maybe you create a Yuan-Ti with 40 levels in Sorcerer class, and you give her the "Diamond Soul" feat.
She receives "MonkClassLevel +10" Spell Resistance from it... meaning "0 +10", and so: 10.



-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Jun-09, 16:52:05
Hello.
Not good.

I make examples using your formula:

[i][(SR*SR)/(CL*CL)]*50%[/i]


A level 1 character with 32 Spell Resistance (from an item) has 128% chances to counter a CasterLevel of 20.
It is immunity.
But if the CasterLevel raises to 23, the chance to counter drop to 96.8%

A level 40 Monk with increased SR of 52 has only 63.9% chances to counter a CL of 46 (level 40 spell caster with Epic Spell Penetration).


The formula makes it too easy to resist a spell.
Is the opposite of the current formula, which makes it too easy to *not* resist a spell.

Need something mid-way, but that _does_ favor the spell caster.
Remember that spells are finite shots.
And often are negated all the same if the SR check is lost, but then the saving throw is won.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 20-Jun-09, 20:58:36
[B]So I am thinking to modify the rules of the Spell Resistance check.
So that a low Spell Resistance has some value.

Ideas?[/B]

I would drop the AD&D rules and make it something like this:

Caster level: CL
Spell resistance : SR
Chance to counter:

(SR/CL)*50%

So there is a 50% chance to block when the levels are equal. If player level is 1, and caster level is 20, it would still be 1/20 * 50% = 2.5% chance to counter.

But a level 1 vs 20 should be unable to perform anything imo. Differences in level should not work out linear. Therefore I suggest:

[(SR*SR)/(CL*CL)]*50%

So now a level 1 SR vs level 20 CL works out: 1/400 * 50% = 1/800 chance to counter.
In reverse a level 20 SR vs level 1 CS will always counter...
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 20-Jun-09, 16:55:49
Hello.


There are 5 problems with the Paladin spell [b]Holy Sword[/b].

It grafts a "Holy Avenger" property to the equipped weapon.
The Holy Avenger is 4 itemproperties in 1:

-- +5 ehancement bonus
-- +1d6 Divine VS Evil
-- 16 Spell Resistance
-- OnHit: cast "Dispel Magic" (DC 15)

But they only work when the weapon is in hand of a Paladin.
And it is all hard-coded. The script of Holy Sword only adds the ItemPropertyHolyAvenger() to the weapon.
After that, the game internals "take over".

The 1st problem is the Dispel Magic.
It is flawed like the regular dispellers: attempts to dispel single effects, both good and bad.

The 2nd problem is the +5 enhancement bonus.
Cast Holy Sword on a weapon with less than +5 enhancement bonus.
The weapon gains enhancement bonus of +5.
Then Rest.
The weapon stays with enhancement bonus of +5, forever.
Unequip, requip.
The weapon returns to original bonus.

No choice.
I must write a substitute for the ItemPropertyHolyAvenger() core-function.
This introduces the 3rd problem: I can not apply the 4 properties of Holy Avenger as individual itemproperties.
Or they also work if the weapon is not in the hand of a Paladin (would be wrong).

So I must implement them in a custom OnHit script I can write.
Which introduces the 4th problem: the Spell Resistance of 16 must be applied to the Paladin using the weapon.
But only when the weapon is equipped.
When unequipped, the Spell Resistance bonus must go away.
This is near-impossible to implement without flaw, because there is not enough functionality to support this behavior.

Speaking of Spell Resistance 16, we have the 5th problem...

If you remember a previous explanation I made, a Spell Resistance check (SR) is almost always lost.
Because it is your [Spell Resistance] vs the [casterLevel + 1d20]
By the current "stock" rules, a level 1 mage has 5% chances (1 of 20) to beat a SR of 21!
A SR of 16 is much easier to beat.
A SR of 10 can not stop any spell cast by a level 9 mage.
A level 1 mage has 45% chances of success (9 of 20) versus SR 10.

So I am thinking to modify the rules of the Spell Resistance check.
So that a low Spell Resistance has some value.

Ideas?



----------------------------------------
Change of subject:

I modified the Paladin class, so he has access to my 3 metamagic feats.
Paladins have a spellbook. And they need to load spells in, and then rest to charge them.
So I believe Paladins have a right to use metamagic.

My metamagic makes life easier. The Paladin is -objectively- a strong class.
Paladins have no access to Epic Spells. I agree with it.


I modified the durations of [b]Divine Might[/b] and [b]Divine Shield[/b].
They now last 5 rounds per Charisma Modifier.
But I am testing. If they make life too easy, I drop the duration to 4, or maybe 3 rounds.

Also, I fixed a bug of Divine Might.
If you noticed, when your Charisma Modifier is above 5 you get a bonus d-roll Divine damage.
It is wrong.
The rule says that you get a fixed +N Divine damage, where N matches your Charisma Modifier.

Actually with a modifier of 6, you receive 1d6 damage.
With a modifier of 7, you receive 1d8 damage.
Raise more. And see that a modifier of 16 gives you 6 Divine only. Haha.
But drop the Modifier to 15, and you receive 2d12 Divine!

They made messy use of the damage constants.
Because the damage constants are numbered in a messy order, to begin.
They are the root of their own bugs.

And they themselves left a comment with a "*MUST*" in it, to remind you must use the correct constants.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Jun-09, 01:16:29
Good idea and nice graphics! Somehow it reminds me of The Bards Tale. That game had such great songs and spells that latsted as long as a song was sang :)
Well no real songs here, but those graphics may be a good alternative.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Jun-09, 00:52:43
Hello.

----------------------------------------
After much thinking, I decide what to do with the Bard "Curse Song".

You know what my Bard Song does and how much lasts.
The Curse Song does the reverse. With some differences.

The Temporary Hit Points of the Bard Song become Sonic Damage in the Curse Song, but in half amount.
The Curse Song too can last up to 150 rounds, and is undispellable.

The original song would affect all non-deafened and not-already-Bard-Cursed enemies.
No SR check or saving throw was allowed.
So you sing -> the enemy is cursed, sure as Sun.
Unfair.

Thus I introduce a Spell Resistance check.
Curse Song is considered a Transmutation school, level 1 spell.
So now it is resisted if you have any of:
- a Spell Mantle
- Immunity to Transmutation spells
- Immunity to Level 1 (or above) spells

No direct "Curse Song" item-immunity exists. I do not provide one.

The SR check is correctly run before checking if the target is deafened or already cursed.
So you may expend your many charges to ruin the Spell Mantle of your targets.
But in no case you can re-curse the same target before the previous curse fades.

Fair :-)

Cosmetic notes:

The original Curse Song applies to the Bard a copy of the Bard Song visual effect (the raising musical notes).
I find it wrong and confusing.
So I change things.
Now the cursed targets receive the musical notes over their head.
But they are no notes. They are symbols that look cursy.
Their color is red. [URL=http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/Bard.jpg]Observe[/URL].

The audio too is changed.
Now Bards have a clear feedback of when a target is cursed / no longer cursed.

Bard spells are complete.


----------------------------------------
Ranger spells are almost complete.
"Entangle" remains to fix.

The spells were quick.
For most part, were variants of previous spells I already fixed.
I did not add much personal touch or extra behaviors. Rangers are already favored by the game.
If you ask me a mono-word definition of Ranger, I answer: commando.


----------------------------------------
Next, is turn of the Paladin spells.
10 spells left in this case.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Jun-09, 13:22:37
Hello.
I finished the Bard spells.
Next are the Ranger spells (less than 20 remain).

But before that, I must adjust the Bard Song and the Curse Song.
They need a fix. The descriptions are completely mis-leading, to begin.
And the code is messy and flawed.
And does favor the AI Bards with cheated stats. Unfair.

So I have rewritten the Bard Song.
I also have prepared a new Feat description for it.
Took me a lot to write it.
I hope it is easy to comprehend.

Here:

[b]--------------------[ begin ]--------------------[/b]
Type of Feat: Class
Prerequisite: Bard.
Specifics: Bards are able to sing a song that can bolster all allies within 30 feet, for 10 rounds. Deafened creatures are unaffected. The higher the bard's base Perform Skill and class level, the better the Bard song. All of the bonuses listed are cumulative.

Every 6 Bard levels, starting at class level 1:
+1 to all Attack and Damage rolls
+2 Temporary Hit Points

Every 6 Bard levels, starting at class level 2:
+1 to all Fortitude Saves
+1 to all Skills
+2 Temporary Hit Points

Every 6 Bard levels, starting at class level 3:
+1 to all Reflex Saves
+2 Temporary Hit Points

Every 6 Bard levels, starting at class level 4:
+1 to all Will Saves
+1 to all Skills
+2 Temporary Hit Points

Every 6 Bard levels, starting at class level 5:
+1 Dodge Armor Class
+2 Temporary Hit Points

Every 6 Bard levels, starting at class level 6:
+1 to all Skills
+2 Temporary Hit Points

Each Bard Song level requires the Bard to possess as much class levels and a base Perform Skill equal to the Song level +3. If the prerequisites are not met, the performed Song is of the first lower level that meets the requirements.
For every 5 total Perform Skill Ranks past the base Skill Ranks, the Bard Song gains an additional +6 Temporary Hit Points bonus.
Use: Selected.
[b]--------------------[ end ]--------------------[/b]

The bottom line is: keep your Perform Skill Rank at maximum (+3 above your class level), and you have access to the best Bard Song available at the moment.
And then do care about increasing your Charisma as much you can, so you get the final boost to Temporary Hit Points.
The Bard Song effects are of Extraordinary type: impossible to dispel.
The Bard Song cares about your BASE Perform Skill Rank. So, no penalty to Charisma may reduce its quality output.
The most damage you can receive from a Charisma Penalty is to get no extra Temporary Hit Points (those told in the last words of the description).


To make example:
A level 20 Bard with maximized Perform Skill (23), Charisma of 28, and "Skill Focus (Perform)" gains:
-- +4 to all Attack and Damage rolls.
-- +4 Fortitude Save
-- +3 Reflex Save
-- +3 Will Save
-- +3 to Dodge Armor Class.
-- +10 to all Skill Ranks.
-- +40 Temporary Hit Points.

Because his total Perform is 35, he gets another ((35 - 23) / 5) * 6) = +12 Temporary Hit Points.
Nice.

But if this Bard had only 21 BASE Perform Skill Ranks, he would not get the Level 20 Bard Song.
He would be Class Level 20, which is greater or equal to Song Level 20. which is okay.
But then he would not have "SongLevel +3" Perform Ranks (23). Which is bad.

Having only 21 Perform, his Song would drop 2 levels.
In fact he would be Class Level 20, which is greater or equal to Song Level 18.
And then he would have 21 Perform Ranks, which is equal to "SongLevel +3" (21).

And so he gets Bard Song level 18:
-- +3 to all Attack and Damage rolls.
-- +3 Fortitude Save
-- +3 Reflex Save
-- +3 Will Save
-- +3 to Dodge Armor Class.
-- +9 to all Skill Ranks.
-- +36 Temporary Hit Points.

Makes sense?

The Song scales to Epic levels following the same rules of the pre-epic levels.
So a level 40 Bard with maximized Perform Skill (43), Charisma of 33, and "Epic Skill Focus (Perform)" too gains:
-- +7 to all Attack and Damage rolls.
-- +7 Fortitude Save
-- +7 Reflex Save
-- +7 Will Save
-- +6 to Dodge Armor Class.
-- +20 to all Skill Ranks.
-- +80 Temporary Hit Points.

Because his total Perform is 67, he gets another ((67 - 43) / 5) * 6) = +24 Temporary Hit Points.
More nice.

The effects last 10 rounds, for all allies (including the Bard).
If you have the "Lingering Song" pre-Epic Feat, the effects last 5 more rounds: 15.
If you also have the "Lasting Inspiration" Epic Feat, the effects last 10x rounds: 150.

My Bard Song is much superior to the "stock" one.
And the AI creatures get no real advantage over the players.
And I take into account Lingering Song _before_ Lasting Inspiration.
The original Bard Song does the opposite (wrong!), so their best duration is 105 rounds.

If the Bard is Silenced, he can not sing.
If the Bard is Deafened (but not Silenced), he may sing but he would not receive the bonuses.
The non-Deafened allies would.

The original Bard Song would not affect Silenced allies (wrong!).
The original Bard Song would give you bonus to Damage in form of Bludgeoning damage.
I have changed it to Sonic damage, more useful, but not over-powered.

I have fixed the Bard spells completely. I know what they can and can not do.
I say the Bard is now very rewarding to play.
This class is almost a cheat :-)


Do you like it?


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Jun-09, 13:22:15
I build a single class character.
Wizard(40) for Wizard spells...
Bard(40) for Bard spells...

I build these characters using a good build.
But I do not make it an exceptional build.
Then I equip them with partial equipment to give average-good bonuses.

I use packs of monsters with assorted abilities.
Melee, Ranged, Casters...
So I get a "feel" for actual combat.
I test in D&D Hardcore difficulty.
Normal difficulty is too easy.
And many bugs hidden in the stock scripts do not show up in Normal difficulty.
Like the bug of the "Web" spell.

Set difficulty to Normal.
You cast Web. Then enter and exit the AOE. All is okay.
Raise the difficulty to Hardcore.
You cast Web. Then enter and exit the AOE. The Web auto-dispels!
Silly BioWare...

Of course I know how each spell works in all details.
So I know how the get the best from it.

There are limit situations that require you to have a friend to test with.
I use custom cheaty scripts to force simulations of those situations.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Jun-09, 00:56:39
I wonder how you test the changed spells. With what kind of chrs? Both casters and chr's to counter spells?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 15-Jun-09, 17:42:38
Oh.
I have fixed the Balor Death script.

When a Balor dies, it explodes in a Fireball spell.
I fixed many little problems.

Now it will damage all creatures and doors and placeables around.
Both friends and foes, visibles and invisibles.

Damage is no more fixed to 50 Fire.
Now damage is 1d6 Fire per 2 Balor levels.

My Gate spell can evoke a level 40 Balor, so his Fireball would be 20d6 Fire.

I fixed the Spell Resistance check.
Now it works, always.
It works _properly_, always.
Correctly ruins your Spell Mantle (if any) by 3 spell levels, and is corretly stopped if you possess Immunity VS Fireball, or Immunity to Evocatin spells or Immunity to level 3 spells at least, or enough Spell Resistance to win the check.

I fixed the Evasive Reflex Save VS Fire.
It uses a proper DC to save against (same rules used for the real Fireball spell).


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 15-Jun-09, 17:24:15
Hello.
I made changes to previous spells I modified.
I believe this is better balanced (for Bards too).


----------------------------------------
- [b]Endure Elements[/b]
Grants the target damage resistance 10/-- VS the 5 element types (Acid, Cold, Electrical, Fire, Sonic).
Spell fades after absorbing 20 points of damage from any single element.
Duration: 3 turns per caster level.
Spell Focus feats in Abjuration school improve the damage resistance by +1/-- each, and the maximum absorption by +2 points each.


----------------------------------------
- [b]Resist Elements[/b]
Grants the target damage resistance 20/-- VS the 5 element types.
Spell fades after absorbing 50 points of damage from any single element.
Duration: 2 turns per caster level.
Spell Focus feats in Abjuration school improve the damage resistance by +2/-- each, and the maximum absorption by +5 points each.


----------------------------------------
- [b]Protection from Elements[/b]
Grants the target damage resistance 30/-- VS the 5 element types.
Spell fades after absorbing 90 points of damage from any single element.
Duration: 1 turn per caster level.
Spell Focus feats in Abjuration school improve the damage resistance by +3/-- each, and the maximum absorption by +9 points each.


----------------------------------------
- [b]Energy Buffer[/b]
Grants the target damage resistance 50/-- VS the 5 element types.
Spell fades after absorbing 5 points of damage per caster level (min 50, max 200) from any single element.
Duration: 1 turn per 2 caster levels.
Spell Focus feats in Abjuration school improve the damage resistance by +5/-- each, and the maximum absorption by +20 points each.
The spell also grants a limited protection VS Magical damage of 3/-- to absorb max 90 points of Magical damage.
Spell Focus feats have NO effect on this last ward.

I changed Energy Buffer as so because is the only spell (of the 4) a Bard has access to.


----------------------------------------
Also, note that the NWN manual says that the Epic Mage Armor and Epic Warding spells are accessible to Bards, Sorcerers and Wizards.
This is untrue. Bards have no access to them.
I have made it true. Bards can now take these 2 Epic spells.

Also also, note that the spell descriptions of the Epic spells state the prerequisite of being able to cast 9th level spells.
This was never true. There is no such prerequisite in the actual "stock" Epic spells. I leave it as so, and update the Epic Spells descriptions properly.

The 2 offensive the and 2 summon Epic Spells are available to:
- Clerics
- Druids
- Rangers
- Sorcerers
- Wizards

The 2 defensive Epic Spells are (now) available to:
- Bards
- Sorcerers
- Wizards

I see the Paladin has no access to Epic Spells.
I have not played the Paladin. Yet.
So I do not know if he has real need for the Epic spells.


----------------------------------------
I have changed the Epic Spell: [b]Hellball[/b].
I found it not very powerful.
Stock Hellball allows a Reflex Save for half damage.
And the damage is only 10d6 for Acid, Cold, Electrical and Fire.

I did upgrade the damage to 16d6 Acid, Cold, Electrical, Fire and Sonic.
I did upgrade the calculated spell DC to be real Epic (likely above 50+).
I did keep the Knockdown "threshold" to 50 points of damage inflicted to the target creature (was like a sure knockdown).
And the knockdown lasted for 1 round.

Bu it was not enough.
Hellball was never dangerous for real.

So I improve it again.
Knockdown duration is augmented to 2 rounds.
Knockdown threshold is augmented to 150 points of total damage.

The explosion from Hellball will immediately collapse your wards:
- Endure Elements
- Resist Elements
- Protection from Elements
- Energy Buffer

And [b]then[/b] it will apply the elemental damage.
Now Hellball is dangerous. More dangerous if you fail the Reflex Save.

Pay attention, the spell casting range is "Medium" (20 meters).
And the blast area covered is 60 feet (20 meters) radius.
And the target filter is "standard-hostile".
Meaning that in game difficulty above Normal, the caster and his friends become valid targets.


----------------------------------------
I have modified the spell: [b]Silence[/b]

Acts similar to a Magic Circle against Alignment, because it creates a zone that travels with you. It is 4 meters radius, and may be cast on any creature (friend of foe).

The effects of the spell are as follow:
All creatures (friend or foe) receive 100% Immunity to Sonic Damage.
All allies of the targeted creature (including the targeted creature) receive 1 point (per 2 _caster_ levels) of bonus to Move Silently Skill.
All enemies of the targeted creature are given a SR check and a Will Save.
Failing both, the enemy creature is Silenced.

All effects last for the time the creatures stay inside the Silence zone, and are removed the moment she quits the bounds.
In case of the bad Silence effect to enemy creatures, the SR check and the Will Save are performed at every round. So the more you stay inside the Silence, the more your Spell Mantle (if any) is ruined by it.

I remind you that being Silenced is bad for spell casters: they can not cast spells with a Verbal component, unless they were prepared with the Silent Spell metamagic feat. So beware.

Spell belongs to Illusion spell school.
It lasts 1 round per caster level.
Spell Focus feats improve the duration as follow:
- Spell Focus: +1 round
- Greater Spell Focus: +2 rounds
- Epic Spell Focus: +2 rounds

Extend Spell metamagic applies.

The last note for Silence spell is that it will do the interests of the targeted creature, and not the interests of the caster.
So if you cast it on your enemy, he gets all the good bonus, and you get all the bad bonus.
Of course, you can dispel the Silence with *Automatic Success*, because it is a spell _you_ cast, regardless of target.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 13-Jun-09, 21:43:50
Hm.
I have seen people wandering so close to my lair.
Many people. Too close.
How did you find it??

I like my privacy.
Maybe I should release a picture of me, so your curiosity is satisfied.
And you leave me alone. Yes?


[URL=http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/youngme.jpg]This one[/URL], I believe is okay.
I was young back then. And careless.

There is no a more recent picture of me.
So do not seek further.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 13-Jun-09, 19:52:01
Hello.

I have fixed *all* of the arcane spells -cantrips included-. Finally.
So Wizards and Sorcerers have a 100% usable and working spellbook.


More.
7 spells only, and I finish fix all the Bard spells too.
And so the Bard too soon has 100% usable and working spellbook.


I see the 5 Cure spells are very bugged.
I fixed the code (was a True Mess).
I also correctd the spell descriptions.
There are no more phantom saving throws performed.
And the Spell Resistance check is only done for Undead.
Some had a wrong Innate Level.
Some reported a phantom counter spell.
So on so forth.
I have fixed every detail.

I also see that exists a "Lesser Body Adjustment" spell.
It is a 1:1 replica of "Cure Light Wounds", but I do not understand _who_ makes use of it.
Likely a monster, or monster[b]S[/b]. But who??


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 11-Jun-09, 18:16:39
Hello.
I am working on it.
I will share when is ready.

Until complete -> is not really usable.

Else, you would see a part of the spells working WHOW!
And the rest of spells working UUGH-

Have patience :-)


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 09-Jun-09, 23:40:45
BB and Nova asked you about using your spell system in our mods. But BB and Nova don't make mods lol. I do! So I would like to know your ideas about this subject too.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 09-Jun-09, 22:30:52
Hello.
More spells changed.

Today the interesting one is: [b]Combust[/b]

I did:
Caster attempts a melee Touch-Attak on target creature.
If *hit*, a SR check is given to the target.
If lost, target is set on fire and takes 2d6 fire damage, +1 per caster level (max +10).

At every round a Reflex save VS Fire is allowed.
If failed, the creature takes 1d6 fire damage, +1 point for each round that passed since the creature was initially torched.
So the Combust damage grows and grows. Beware.

There is no limit to the spell duration.
Original spell had an untold self-limit of 10 rounds.

The spell ends when the target creature makes a successful Reflex save VS Fire.
Evasion feats are no help.

Each Spell Focus feat in Evocation school improves the Fire damage by 1d6.

I introduced a safety net: if caster and target are not in the same Area, the Combust fades.
Also, Combust is removed by a [b]Gust of Wind[/b].

Original NWN spell forbids 2 Combust spells to stack on the same target.
I too do it.
But I make the new Combust "overwrite" the previous one.

So your friend mage may over-cast a better Combust on your target.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 08-Jun-09, 02:56:13
Hello.
I changed more spells, and undid some things I did.


----------------------------------------
I did modify the spell [b]Legend Lore[/b] into [b]Scry Hostile[/b].
I have undone it into Legend Lore again, but changed it.
Now the caster gets +1 bonus to Lore Skill rank per caster level.
Spell Focus feats in Divination school improve the bonus as follow:
- Spell Focus: +5 Lore (+5 total)
- Greater Spell Focus: +10 Lore (+15 total)
- Epic Spell Focus: +15 Lore (+30 total)


----------------------------------------
Why I did it?
Because I modified -again- the spell [b]Identify[/b]:
It no longer gives you a boost to Lore. There is Legend Lore for that.
Identify is now used to automatically identify a number of items possessed by the target creature.
Up to 1 item per caster level.

The identification happens according to NWN rules (NWN Manual, page 178, "Table 11: Lore values")
If caster has enough Lore Skill, the item is identified.
Else, it is not.

There is a glitch with this automatic identification: if you have the inventory open, the identified items continue to look like not-identified.
The fix:
Close and re-open the inventory.
OR, Change inventory page.
The items are refreshed and appear identified.


----------------------------------------
I changed the targeting filter of [b]Vampiric Touch[/b].
Original spell allowed you to target party members in D&D Hardcore difficulty and above.
To make example: a Wizard could use this spell on his own Familiar and gain a big HP boost before entering battle.
Unfair, I believe.
Now the targeting filter only permit to target enemies (those with name in Red on your screen).


----------------------------------------
I changed [b]Gust of Wind[/b]:
Identical to original spell (bugs excluded), plus a personal touch.
The wind will remove the flaming of the [b]Combust[/b] spell from all creatures caught in the AOE.


----------------------------------------
The spell [b]Stinking Cloud[/b] too is changed.
It is a level 3 spell.
Its original spell-description is completely wrong, to begin.
The Daze effects do not persist on the creature when she quits the cloud.
The Daze effects to not last for the duration said in the description.
I could have changed it to be like what the description says.
But it would be too much power for a level 3 spell.
So I make the Daze effects last for 1 round, the current round.
At each round a creature persists in the cloud, she risks to be Dazed again.

Learn the difference between being Dazed and being Stunned.
Lexicon tells it good. I synth it: both effects incapacitate all your actions.
With the difference that Daze allows you to walk around and move away.

Why I say?
Because the spell [b]Cloud of Bewilderment[/b] is a level 2 spell, but is superior -in power- to Stinking Cloud.
The bewilderment applies a Stun + Blindness. For 1d6 rounds!
That is too much power for a rookie level 2 spell.

So this is a balancing issue.
I discover it is common to find this inconsistency between NWN and HOTU spells.
Stinking Cloud is a NWN spell.
Cloud of Bewilderment is a HOTU spell.

I change the Cloud of Bewilderment to apply Stun for half-round (3 seconds).
And I remove the Blindness from it.
There are many other spells available if you want to blind the enemy.



-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Jun-09, 20:03:23
Hello.
Changed more spells.
Worth to mention is: [b]Vampiric Touch[/b]

Took me days to decide what to do with it.
The problem is that the original spell is a bad idea, from begin to end.
Not only it is bugged. But it can not be made flawless, because the spell system does not like spells that apply damage and then do more stuff based on that damage _after_ the damage is applied.
We can say Vampiric Touch is unique in this mechanism.

I have patched it as better as I can.
Close to perfection. But can not be perfect.

You touch a target creature and give her some Negative Energy damage.
What damage you apply, returns to you in form of Temporray Hit Points bonus.
If the creature is immune to your damage, or if she resists part of it, the spell only gives you THP in amount equal to the damage the creature _has_ suffered.
So the THP are not necessarily equal to the damage you try to apply. Makes sense?
The original spell would not make this important distinction.

The damage dealt is: 1d6 per 2 caster levels.
Max 10d6. But can not be greater than the target current HP +10 (enough to send anyone to grave)

Empower and Maximize metamagic do affect the rolled damage.

Spell Focus feats in Necromancy school improve the damage as follow:
- Spell Focus: +1d6 (total +1d6)
- Greater Spell Focus: +1d6 (total +2d6)
- Epic Spell Focus: +2d6 (total +4d6)

What THP bonus you receive, it lasts for 1 game-hour per 2 caster levels.
Spell duration is classified "instant". So Extend metamagic is ignored here.

Special note:
Vampiric Touch is an attack spell.
Like all attack spells, it is not subject of dispelling.
But Vampiric Touch is also a warding spell.
You receive beneficial THP bonus from it.
The THP is subject to dispelling, like all "lasting Good effects" are.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 04-Jun-09, 00:51:11
Errata corrige:

The 45% chance is of [b]success[/b].
So the chances to fail are 55%


I better get sleep now.
Good Night
-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 04-Jun-09, 00:41:44
Hello all.
My eyes are tired.

I am substituting the Dispelling System with one of my own.
Very complex task the dispelling is.
This may produce heavy scripting activity in some circumstances.
But I see no slowing on my personal Laptop.
With exception of Alabadaran and his 1.6 GHz CPU, I see no problem for any of you.


If you observed closely the work of the original Dispelling system, you must have noted something wrong. Or maybe you noted _many_ things wrong.
Haha. You did not see ghosts. I can assure :-)

To list the complete problems of the dispellers in NWN is too long speech.
You need solid understandings of how the spell-system of NWN works, and the many pit-falls of the script system.

So I pass.
Instead I will say what my system does (and flawlessly):

Casters of a spell are granted *Automatic Success* when trying to dispel a spell they did cast.

The console report of the dispelled spells now outputs the name of the dispeller that was used. And it does not report "phantom" spells, nor "false positives".

The dispel-check is no longer done Versus single spell-effects taken one-by-one.
Instead is done Versus the entire spell, considered a "whole" (like D&D says).
If the check is won, the spell is defeated and removed.
Else, the spell stays, untouched.

Summoned creatures can be Unsummoned (removed) if you dispel them directly, or if you dispel their Master.
If you fail to directly dispel a Summoned creature, you may yet succeed at dispelling those spells that were used to ehnance her.
Logical.

For Area Dispels... the AI does no longer *cheat*.
Haha. Yes it always cheated.
Players too always cheated, but they were not told.
A proper dispel-check is now performed on Persistent AOE spells (fog and cloud-like spells).
You win the check -> the AOE is dispelled.
Else, the AOE spell stays.

I have full control on this mechanism. I could output a detailed console report for it.
But I keep the original NWN behavior.
So -like before- you will only see the floating message on your screen, and you will not be told which Persistent AOE was removed (or not removed).
The Persistent AOEs are easy to recognize by visual.
There is no real need for names.
What you care for is that they are removed correctly, no? :-)


Be aware that often may be a better choice to cast [b]Gust of Wind[/b] against Persistent AOEs you want removed.
Gust of Wind does not perform dispel-checks. It simply removes what is found.
In this regard it beats any dispeller, and it is only a level 3 spell.
And did you know that Gust of Wind can open/close doors?

Of course if you attempt to dispel your own AOE spells, you get *Automatic Success*.

Note that *Automatic Success* means that: Sure Success.
So when you want to dispel something you did, you can use any dispeller cast at any level, including a Lesser Dispel cast from an item.

I strict follow the rules of the standard Dispel Check.
Meaning:
- [b]Lesser Dispel[/b] can not dispel anything cast by a level 15+ mage.
- [b]Dispel Magic[/b] can not dispel anything cast by a level 20+ mage.
- [b]Greater Dispelling[/b] can not dispel anything cast by a level 30+ mage.

- [b]Mordenkainen's Disjunction[/b] (normally) may not dispel anything cast by a level 50+ mage.

But only the AI can go past level 40.
To make things fair, I ensure that all spells are limited to caster level 40.
So a super AI mage of level 60 does cast his stuff at level 40 anyway.
This means that a Mordenkainen's Disjuction has now the *potential* to dispel any spell cast by anyone, at any level.

Potential does not mean Sure Success.
The dispel-check may yet fail if it gets a bad roll or if your caster level is too low.
To make example, Mordenkainen's Disjuction has always 45% chances to fail when used against a spell that was cast at your same level.
Logical consequence of how the dispel-check works.

This means that 2 opposed mages of level 40, now have each 45% chances to fail when using Mordenkainen's Disjunction on any spell cast by the enemy.
All by the rules.

I do not account for *Critical Failure* and *Critical Success* rolls.
And I do not know if the original NWN dispel system does.

So if your dispel-check rolls the unlucky 1, you may yet succeed at dispelling.
Likewise, if your dispel-check rolls a lucky 20, you may yet fail at dispelling.

All these rules are in effect for the AI too.
Players are not advantaged. The AI is not advantaged.


-fox
 
Author: Jultknight|TheBlind (Facebook Search for :: Julien David Mondoux Lepage)
Date: 03-Jun-09, 02:39:36
hmm my pc have 1 years, i have a Dual Core 6000 X2 4 Gig Ram with 700 Gig Hard Drive with a video Card Evga Gforce 8800 Gts 640 Mega Bit Ram DDR3 on Windows Xp and Vista Dual Boot
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 03-Jun-09, 01:34:13
Thank you.

-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 02-Jun-09, 19:34:32
Gaming computer for Nwn is 6 years old, 1.6 Gb, 640 MB ram.

I also play Rom2 on this pc lol!

My latest pc is 3 years old, I only use it for newer games.
Athlon 3200 processor 2.01 Ghz. 2,96 GB. ram.

But I probably replace that one this summer by a pc where Nwn2 and X3: Terran Conflict runs smoothly. No specs yet...
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 02-Jun-09, 11:53:44
Aha, I can answer that.

My PC is a bit "old" but very stable and good enough for me.

AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 4200+, 2210 Mhz

Dual Channel memory 2x 2GB DDR2 SDRAM
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 02-Jun-09, 04:08:50
Hello all.

I need to get an idea of how powerful are your Desktop Computers or Laptops.

I am interested in CPU cores and speed, and the amount of RAM.

This is to make an idea of how much I can "push" my NWN scripts.


Thank you all.
-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 31-May-09, 19:39:26
Um. I forgot.
(so many thoughts in my head these days)

NOVA, check your e-mail.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 31-May-09, 19:33:11
Answer about making of a module:

I am not skilled at designing areas.
Maybe I lack "sense of scale".

And I am not good at writing stories.
To read them is more fun.

But I can help with scripts.
If that is good, I offer my support.


-fox



----------------------------------------
Change of subject:

I changed the dispellers and the breachers.
The 4 dispellers are:
- [b]Lesser Dispel[/b]
- [b]Dispel Magic[/b]
- [b]Greater Dispelling[/b]
- [b]Mordenkainen's Disjunction[/b]

I updated their spell description, because it wrongly said that a SR check was allowed.
It was a lie. No SR check is in place for dispellers.
And none must be, in fact.

I also removed the "spell breach" performed by Mordenkainen's Disjunction.
My Mordenkainen's Disjunction willl be closer to D&D 3rd Ed. rules, and attempt to dis-join all your equipped items from the spells that were used to ehnance them (if any, of course).

Also, I improved the Greater Dispelling "caster level" bonus, from +15 to +20.

But the dispellers are still flawed.
To fix them I must re-invent the dispelling system.
Elephant work. Comparable to what I did for the Spell Resistance.
So I prefer to delay it for as much as I can.



The 2 breachers are:
- [b]Lesser Spell Breach[/b]
- [b]Greater Spell Breach[/b]

They are changed completely.
I am not sure where the idea of "breaching" is from, but it is absent in D&D 3rd Edition.
But NWW has these 2 spells. I do not feel like removing them.

If you ask what a spell breach is, I answer it is another kind of dispeller.
But unlike a dispeller, a breacher does not fail.
Breachers do seek specific spell wards you have active on yourself. If any is found, it is removed.
These wards are in a list of 33 spells decided by BioWare.
The breachers also apply a temporary, but undispellable, penalty to the target "Spell Resistance".

Last note is that the original Mordenkainen's Disjunction was applying a Greater Dispelling (but with unlimited bonus to "caster level"), _plus_ a Greater Spell Breach.
So yes, Mordenkainen's Disjuction was 2 dispellers packed in one.
More.
The breaching part acted before the dispelling part.
And so The Disjunction would first remove some effects, for sure, and then attempt to remove more effects.
No big difference in case of Single Target dispel.
But huge difference in case of Area dispel.
when in area dispel mode, dispellers only try to remove the 1 best effect you have.
If they fail, the find the 2nd best, and try to remove that.
So on so forth, until they remove 1 effect from you.

In case of Area dispel, Mordenkainen's Disjuction would not just remove the 1 best effect you have... but it would remove all the effects a Greater Spell Breach could, and then would proceed to remove the 1 best effect you have, among those _left_.
Very unfair, if you ask me.

That is why I removed the breaching portion of Mordenkainen's Disjuction.
And then I found a cool new mechanism for the breachers.

Purpose of breachers is to breach your spell defenses.
They strip you of specific magic wards you possess.
And then they lower your Spell Resistance for some time.

MY breachers do the same, but do it very differently.
They are now subject to a Spell Resistance check.
So they can be stopped in any conventional way.
Fair.

But a breacher is born to destroy spells.
So I do something out of the rules.
If you are protected by a spell mantle, the mantle stops the breacher but the breacher kills the mantle.
If you are not so protected, the breacher proceeds and removes specific wards you have.
Being subject to Spell Resistance, breachers can be stopped by item immunities too.
But even so: if you have a spell mantle, the mantle is destroyed.

The original NWN breachers used a list of 33 wards, of assorted purpose and level.
Very patch-work list, if you ask me.

I care for less wards, but specific in what they do: protect you from other spells.

I report the 2 lists here.
Note they are sorted by "priority": wards at the top are removed first.
They are also sorted by "Innate level": wards at the top are higher level.

Lesser Spell Breach can remove:
- Minor Globe of Invulnerability
- Stoneskin
- Death Ward
- Magic Circle against Alignment (all variants at once)
- Negative Energy Protection
- Ghostly Visage
- (Assassin: Ghostly Visage, as well)
- Clarity
- Shield
- Protection from Alignment (all variants at once)
- Resistance

In addition, Greater Spell Breach can also remove:
- Globe of Invulnerability
- Greater Stoneskin
- Shades: Stoneskin
- Greater Shadow Conjuration: Minor Globe of Invulnerability
- Ethereal Visage
- Greater Shadow Conjuration: Ghostly Visage
- Spell Resistance
- Lesser Mind Blank

Not all wards in the lists are removed.
The breachers only remove the first few wards they find and have interest in.
(2 for Lesser, 4 for Greater)

Spell Focus feats in Abjuration school augment the amount of wards to remove.
Lesser Spell Breach improves from 2... to 3, then 4, then 5 wards removed.
Greater Spell Breach improves from 4... to 5, then 7, then 9.

My breachers apply a heavy Spell Resistance penalty that *nullify* the target Spell Resistance.
The penalty is undispellable, and lasts for 1 or 2 Turns (1 for Lesser, 2 for Greater).
Extend metamagic doubles that duration.


I believe my breachers are a lot better than the originals.

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-May-09, 22:32:56
Fox

I always wanted to ask you the same thing Nova did, but never knew how LOL.
Simply because I'm much more retarded than Nova is in that technical department.

So, I'm very interested to know what your response to Nova's question is, unless it's personal ofcourse. ;)
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-May-09, 18:22:45
[I]If your Charm or Domination attempt fails, the subject creature is immediately notified of your malevolent intent, and will react by attacking you.
Makes sense.[/I]
Not always. E.g. a shopkeeper would not like it, and in return charge higher prices. But never kill the customer! :)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-May-09, 15:30:06
Grr! I forgot.


NOVA,
In the next days I will send you an e-mail, to answer your post.
I must do some stuff before.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-May-09, 15:28:01
Oh, I forgot.
Spells who apply "Charm" and "Domination" effects are now "intent" aware.
This is easy to understand.

When victim of Charm or Domination, a creature is immediately released from your influence if you do anything harmful to her. Logical.
This is why the spell scripts who applied those effects were forced to do it in a "nice" way.
The spell was signaled to the target AI, but was classified as "non-harmful" effect.
And so the creature would not start attacking you in case the spell failed on him.
Because she did not feel attacked.
Makes sense?

I do thing differently.
If your Charm or Domination attempt fails, the subject creature is immediately notified of your malevolent intent, and will react by attacking you.
Makes sense.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-May-09, 15:09:20
Hello.

Made more changes to spells.
Very technical fixes, for most part.
Lot to say, so I try to make synth-speech.


----------------------------------------
Modified again [b]Mestil's Acid Sheath[/b]:
From previous version I described, I removed support for Empower and Maximize metamagic.
The damage output was too high otherwise.
Previous spell focus support is unchanged.


----------------------------------------
Modified [b]Elemental Shield[/b]:
Now your skin is coated in ice (my scenic addition), and your body surrounded by the fire ring (like before).
2 Immunities are gained like before. 50% VS Fire. And 50% VS Cold.
Shield retaliation-damage is now: 1d6 Fire, +1 / 2 caster levels.
Plus, 1d6 Cold, +1 / 2 caster levels.
Here too, no support for Empower and Maximize metamagic.
Spell Focus Feats improve the d-roll damage of the shield from 1d6 to 2d6, then 3d6, finally 4d6.


----------------------------------------
Fixed [b]Phantasmal Killer[/b]:
Now correctly kills creatures Immune to Death Magic.
Because of this invincible feature, I make the spell ineffective VS Undeads and Constructs.
Those 2 racial types can not feel "Fear", and may not be "terrorized to death" (what this spell does).
The Will save is kept VS Fear.
But the Fortitude Save is changed into generic.
(note [b]Weird[/b] is the AOE version of Phantasmal Killer, and works in similar way)
Creatures who win the Fortitude Save are spared of Instant Death... but because of the Sure Death they escaped, they suffer 3d6 Magical damage and are struck with Fear for 1 round.
Spell Focus feats improve the magical damage taken and prolong the duration of the Fear effect (when and if applied).


----------------------------------------
Fixed [b]Undeath to Death[b] and [b]Sunburst[/b]:
They too now bypass the Immunity to Death Magic proper of all undeads.
Targeted undeads will in fact be "slain" and no longer "damaged to death"... which was a lame BioWare hack to make the spells work.
Their "damage targets to death" solution was based on faulty assumption: what happened if the undead target was immune to the damage you use? Of course: failure.


----------------------------------------
Fixed [b]Power Word, Kill[b]:
Beware, it is now the fearsome word of power it had to be in first place!
It too will bypass any form of Immunity to Death magic you may possess.
Unlike Undeath to Death, Weird, Sunburst and Phantasmal Killer, the [b]Power Word, Kill[/b] spell shall slay _anything_ that falls prey of its targeting filter.
So this is a "silver bullet" to kill Undeads, Dragons, Constructs, Superman, Players...
Anything that fails the SR check and is found with not enough HP left, is "Hasta la vista, baby".


----------------------------------------
Fixed [b]Remove Disease[/b]:
It no longer removes Ability Score Penalties applied by _other_ spells.
It will only remove those penalties applied by a Disease effect.
I anticipate this can not be flawless work.
Disease effects and their penalties are handled internally by the game.
(unless there is a script somewhere that I have not found)
Said in simple words: those penalties are applied in the *wrong* way.
That is, in the way a spell should never do it.

What you read about spells and spell-effects in the Lexicon is only the "tip of the iceberg".
I discover that the original BioWare scripters do ignore how the game engine that moves NWN does work.
It should not sound unbelievable.
It is "common doing" that the engineers of an elaborate software (like a game-engine) are in a separate Team.
Separate from those who make "use" of that software (the scripters, in our case).
What _is_ unbelievable, is that the scripters Team apparently received no detailed instructions on how to use the engine of NWN.
Or maybe they did, but they did not learn / did not read / did not care.
The end-result is that NWN is used improperly by the scripts. Always was, from Day Zero.
I have seen that NWN is less bugged and less expansion-limited than it look.
Only need to make proper use of it.


----------------------------------------
Fixed [b]Neutralize Poison[/b]:
It no longer removes Poisons AND Diseases! (did you notice it removed Disease too?)
And it no longer removes Ability Score Penalties applied by _other_ spells (same conceptual flaw of Remove Disease).
It will only remove the effects of a Poison.
But differently from Remove Disease, Neutralize Poison now makes flawless job.


----------------------------------------
Changed [b]Remove Blindness / Deafness[/b]:
It will now remove all Blindness and all Deafness effects.
It will also remove _all other_ effects that were applied (if any) together with those Blindness and Deafness effects that got removed.


----------------------------------------
Changed [b]Remove Curse[/b]:
Same behavior of Remove Blindness / Deafness, but applied to "Curse" effects and all other spell effects who accompany those curses (if any).


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 28-May-09, 00:39:31
Having created all these fantastic alterations and fixes for the NWN spell system, what are the chances that you will distribute these so we could incorporate them into our modules?

The changes you have made obviously will make the game much better (certainly much more realistic and internally logical). They will also make mage characters much more logical and useful. It would be nice to benefit from all your hard work and effort.

As I posted in response to Simon, I would LOVE to make my own custom NWN module (I have a rough outline idea of how the module would work) but I am a retard when it comes to doing such things. I am unable to navigate the Aurora engine and I certainly cannot script anything. As such, it would work out much better if I simply wrote down the details and someone who was competent actually made the module. Perhaps even if it were a group project (like Rhun was), we could collectively create a wonderful module.

I'm wondering if you would be willing to participate in that effort in any way?

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-May-09, 17:03:19
Haha.
Forget the previous post.

I discovered what was wrong.
A detail I was not aware of.
It worked against me.
And I believed it was a problem of the core-function to create the effect.

Once in a very while I can go idiot too.
Part of learning process.

Mind Fog, Curse Song, Lich Lyrics: they work.
Not flawlessly, but they do.
And Lexicon is not twice wrong.
Only once: the penalty to single saving throws _is_ shown on character sheet.

The thing that fooled me has to do with "Plot" creatures and "Immortal" creatures.
The exact details are a secret.
It is sufficient to point that "plot" creatures are made immune (by the game) to any penalty to saving throws.
Apparently they will suffer all other kind of malevolent and benevolent effects.
I do not get the logic of this. So go ask to BioWare, not me.

Immortal creatuers instead will suffer any thing to any extent.
The game will only intervene and forbid them to die.

So beware when you make "plot" creatures, some things may not behave on them as you would expect.


I am satisfied.
This adventure taught me many things.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 26-May-09, 20:25:06
Hello.
[b]Mind Fog[/b] spell is pausing me.

Mind Fog is another 100% broken spell.
It applies -10 penalty to Will saves.
Spell description says "VS Mind Spells".
Actual code applies it to _all_ Will saves.

But no penalty is truly applied.
Lexicon says that this kind of penalty does not show up on the character screen.
Lexicon shows a example code that applies a -20 to Will saves.
Lexicon is twice ignorant of the problem.

Their example code never worked, and never will.

No spell effect to apply any Will save penalty will work.
The spell effect will be created invalid, and applied invalid, and so ignored.

I must solve this problem.
Not only Mind Fog depends on it, but the Bard "Curse Song" too, and the item "Lich Lyrics" too.
It is too big to ignore.

Penalty to saving throws can also be applied by item properties.
And saving throw penalties applied by items _do_ show on your character screen.
So I worked in that direction.
But again Mind Fog failed to create any valid item property to apply the -10 penalty.

To make a test, I wanted to create an item to wear that would lower my Will save.
Surprise! Biggest saving throw penalty available in Aurora stops at -5.

I discovered later that it was no coincidence.
The list of "quality" of penalties is taken from two 2DA files.
One of the two affects the saving throw penalties.
I added more entries to that file, and Aurora reflected the change (after close and restart).
Now saving throw penalties of up to -20 can be created on items.

This positively affects Mind Fog, which succeeds in applying a temporary saving throw penalty (by item property) of up to -20.

But there is a new problem.
When the item property fades, the character screen is not updated correctly.
And you still read you have a penalty to your Will save.
This is no simple glitch.
In fact if you perform a Will save, your true Will save is the one with the penalty still applied.
Even if the source of that penalty is removed from you.

I find work-around for it.
Force a re-equip of the item on which I applied the temporary penalty.
This refreshes the character screen correctly. And the true Will save you have returns to work like normal.

But there is a new problem.
The re-equip of the item is an action, like walking of fighting.
So if you are doing something else, like walking to a distant point on the Area, and the re-equip command fires while you walk (or fight), the re-equip shall wait until you "stop" doing _all_ that you are doing.
The problem is that if you issue another command _before_ you "stop"... the new command cancels the pending re-equip, and your Will save stays penalized.

(I am getting tired of these limitations)

I find (temporary) work-around for it: when the re-equip comes, the character is forced to abort all actions in progress. The re-equip happens immediately. Can not go wrong.
But it is ugly to see.
And the console does echo that you re-equipepd an item.
It ugly on ugly (grr...)

I have other matters to attend now.
Later I will experiment if I can find a way to apply the Will save penalty as a true spell-effect (not as item property).
And if it does not work... it is a HUGE problem.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 25-May-09, 00:34:20
-- Albadaran

[b][i]Because it would be my choice of gear (I really regret that the game engine seems to be unable to create high level random gear; map makers have to spend lots of time in creating items, and when they finally want to play themselves, they know every corner of the world[/i][/b]

Do not regret.
The game offers no built-in function to populate a Store with random gear.
But no rule forbids you to script your mechanism.
It is a lucky case in which there is all the core functionality you need.
So you think something -> it is possible to do.

If you want new feats, they can be made.
And I see the Arcane Archer combat feats (Imbue Arrow, Seeker Arrow, Death Arrow...) are not hard-coded.
Meaning: they run a script you can open/modify.
First you seek the Feat definition in Feats.2DA.
From Feats.2DA you learn which "Spell ID" that feat uses (... if any).
(if any...) Then you open Spells.2DA and locate the line with that ID.
In that line is told the script to run for that spell/feat.

Very easy.

A small set of 2DA files is zipped inside the Source.zip archive you have in your NWN folder.
Extract the files you wish to change and put them in your Override folder.

But many more 2DA files exist. If you want access to them, download the "NWN Explorer 1.1" utility.
Many things can be done only by editing 2DA files, so do not underestimate their role.
Consider 2DA files like halfway between hard-coded data and soft-coded data.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 24-May-09, 16:15:48
[I]Is this the kind of customization you have in mind?[/I]
That is something I thought of yes. It was Nova who drew my attention to this subject because his Arcane Archer is unable to do much damage on the Horror level of my mod. And, so he told me, no matter that bows are weapons for distance, it's inevitable that monsters often surround you. And bow users have no heavy gear protection. This makes them very vurnerable.

I understand that creating better gear is an option. But that is not why I would like to do. Because it would be [I]my[/I] choice of gear (I really regret that the game engine seems to be unable to create high level random gear; map makers have to spend lots of time in creating items, and when they finally want to play themselves, they know every corner of the world, what they created and what it does - it maybe fun for other players, but as creator of the maps I would like to be suprised too now and than!).

I hoped there was a way to improve feats for bow users, just like you did with spells. Or even create complete new ones. But since I'm no bow user let us ask Nova's opinion on what is needed.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 24-May-09, 03:55:17
You can not edit what is hard-coded.
But you can edit scripts. Or also 2DA files.

Bow users are the same as sword users.
Give them good gear, and they tear platoons apart.
But do not forget that a bow is best used from distance.
You get in melee range with a bow -> you get trouble.

On hardcore difficulty and above, users of ranged weaponry are subject to *attacks of opportunity* from melee attackers.
But if you dislike this rule, you can change it.

Second choice for an archer is the Ranger.
He picks "favored enemies" and inflicts greater damage to them.
First choice for an archer is the Arcane Archer.
His abilities are a little limited, but he has access to multi arrows, seeker arrows, instant-death arrows, and fireball-arrows.
Maybe those abilities can be modified (more charges, or more power too).
I have not investigated.

Number of attacks is hard-coded in game.
They depend on your BAB, which is max 30 at level 40.
The arcane archer wants you to be capable to cast level 1 "arcane" spells.
Meaning that you need 1 class in Bard, Sorcerer or Wizard.
That 1 class will stop your super BAB at 29. Super BAB all the same.

You can reach 6 attacks per rounds (4 by the BAB, 1 by Haste, 1 by Feat).
But you need to build a good character to take advantage of that power.
And you need good gear.

Bows use ammunitions.
Ammunitions are _highly_ customizable.
Stop seeing the arrow like a piece of pointy wood that flies.
It can be more.
Spells can be attached to arrows.
Spells are scripts.
Scripts do what you want.
So you can craft arrows to do what you want. My logic is flawless.

You may create an arrow that "splits" on impact, and multiple arrows are launched from that target to nearby targets.
Or you may craft arrows who cast a "Chain Lightning" on the target.

Is this the kind of customization you have in mind?


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 24-May-09, 01:29:51
It's a lot of effort you put into changing spells.
Reminds me of a discussion I had with Nova when playing my mod: He claimed that bow users have about the same dissadvantages (if not more) as magic users have. But accordng to your postings magic users are not weak at all!
Yet I acknowledge bow users have problems in this game, only to be compensated by adjustments of their gear, were magic users can be boosted up with their spells. Or am I wrong? Can bow users be boosted just like the spells you changed for magic users? That is: by editing hard coded instructions? Can we do that??

In that case my first recommendation would be to increase bowspeed attacks dramatically.
Next would be to add some special attacks such as in Diablo 2. Spreading arrows at multiple targets, arrow attacks that follow the target and never miss, and damage calculated by player level (and real high for level 40's), and so on...
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-May-09, 01:59:22
Hello.

Remember when I talked of my "Elemental Weapon" spell?
I said it substituted "Flame Weapon". But like "Flame
Weapon" it was implemented as a custom on_hit item
property attached to the weapon.

It was necessary so I could define custom range damages.
In fact when you add damage bonus properties to items,
you do not specify the damage directly.
Instead you use a named constant value that the game
knows about, and identifies, and translates into a fixed
damage range.

In a word: hard-coded.

Scratch that.
I have found were those constants are defined.
I have messed with the resource file, and pawed-in more
constants. MY constants.
It works flawlessly -no need to say-.

I had to do this to make a better [b]Mestil's Acid
Sheath[/b] spell.
Original spell is overpowered. It creates a retaliator
shield that inflicts 1d6 Acid damage, +2 points per
caster level to any melee attacker who hits you.
This means that a level 40 caster gets to inflict 1d6+80
Acid damage per hit received.
It is too strong, even if you have to *offer* yourself
to the enemy, so they can hit you and receive damage in
exchange.

I revised the thing.
Now Mestil's Acid Sheath grants you Immunity to Acid
Damage.
And the shield does 1d6 Acid Damage, +1 point per caster
level.

Spell Focus feats in Conjuration school will upgrade the
shield damage as follow:
- Spell Focus: 2d6, +1 / level.
- Greater Spell Focus: 4d6, +1 / level.
- Epic Spell Focus: 6d6, +1 / level.

Full metamagic applies.
Therefore a level 40 Epic Conjurer that uses Empower +
Maximize metamagic, gets a shield that deals 114 Acid
damage on hit.
Hm. Maybe now it is seriously overpowered... Haha.

Let us do a summary of the spells I revised/modified
until now.
(I paste them in the order they are recorded in my log)
(so forgive the mess - it is NO indicator of the quality
of my scripts, be assured)

Gate
Continual Flame
- Continual White Flame
- Continual Red Flame
- Continual Green Flame
- Continual Blue Flame
- Extinguish Flame
Endure Elements
Resist Elements
Protection from Elements
Energy Buffer
Epic Spell: Greater Ruin
Epic Spell: Hellball
Blackstaff
Elemental Weapon (substitutes Flame Weapon)
- Flame Weapon
- Corrosive Weapon
- Frigid Weapon
- Shock Weapon
- Deafening Weapon (need a better name for this - sonic
based damage)
Planar Ally
Lesser Planar Binding
Planar Binding
Greater Planar Binding
Weird
Meteor Swarm
Scry Hostile (substitutes Legend Lore - need a better
idea)
Identify
Epic Spell: Epic Warding
Time Stop
True Strike
Mage Armor
Stone Bones
Shield
Melf's Acid Arrow
Isaac's Lesser Missile Storm
Isaac's Greater Missile Storm
Flame Arrow
Ball Lightning
Firebrand
Lesser Spell Mantle
Spell Mantle
Greater Spell Mantle
Power Word, Stun
Power Word, Kill
Banishment
Bigby's Interposing Hand
Bigby's Forceful Hand
Bigby's Grasping Hand
Bigby's Clenched Fist
Bigby's Crushing Hand
Ice Storm
Wail of the Banshee
Summon familiar (Sorcerer and Wizard feat)
Burning Hands
Epic Spell: Epic Mage Armor
Epic Spell: Dragon Knigth
Fireball
Shades: Fireball
Delayed Blast Fireball
Bestow Curse
Acid Fog
Cloudkill
Evard's Black Tentacles
Cone of Cold
Shades: Cone of Cold
Darkness
Shadow Conjuration: Darkness
Assassin: Darkness
Greater Wild Shape III - Drider Darkness
Ultravision
Magic Missile
Shadow Conjuration: Magic Missile
Energy Drain
Shadow Shield
Dominate Monster
Greater Sanctuary
Horrid Wilting
Incendiary Cloud (should remove the SR check. D&D says
it has none)
Mass Charm
Charm Person
Charm Monster
Clarity
Lesser Mind Blank
Mind Blank
Premonition
Sunburst
Create Undead
Control Undead
Finger of Death
Improved Invisibility
Assassin: Improved Invisibility
Invisibility
Shadow Conjuration: Invisibility
Assassin: Invisibility
Magic Circle against Alignment
- Magic Circle against Evil
- Magic Circle against Good
- Magic Circle against Chaos
- Magic Circle against Law
Protection from Alignment
- Protection from Evil
- Protection from Good
- Protection from Chaos
- Protection from Law
Haste
Slow
Mass Haste
Protection from Spells
Prismatic Spray
Great Thunderclap (how cool this now is, no word can
tell)
Chain Lightning (same as above)
Ethereal Visage
Ghostly Visage
Greater Shadow Conjuration: Ghostly Visage
Assassin: Ghostly Visage
Shapechange (this one should do a lot more than it does.
Need ideas)
Globe of Invulnerability
Minor Globe of Invulnerability
Greater Shadow Conjuration: Minor Globe of
Invulnerability
Stoneskin
Shades: Stoneskin
Greater Stoneskin
Flesh to Stone
Tenser's Transformation (this one should do a lot more
than it does. Need ideas)
True Seeing
Circle of Death
Undeath to Death (more cool-looking than the original)
Dominate Person
Dismissal
Feeblemind
Hold Monster
Mestil's Acid Sheath
Bull's Strength
Blackguard: Bull's Strength
Stone to Flesh
Cat's Grace
Endurance
Fox's Cunning (of course, of course)
Eagle's Splendor
Owl's Wisdom
Heal
Harm
Mass Heal
Mass Blindness and Deafness
Elemental Swarm
Mordenkainen's Sword
Animate Dead
Black Blade of Disaster
Summon Creature I
Summon Creature II
Summon Creature III
Summon Creature IV
Summon Creature V
Summon Creature VI
Summon Creature VII
Summon Creature VIII
Summon Creature IX

I also modified some hi-priority monster "bolt"
abilities and spells.
(many more await, but lo-priority)

Petrify Breath
Petrify Touch
Petrify Gaze
Greater Wild Shape - Basilisk Stonegaze
Bolt Ability: Drain Charisma
Bolt Ability: Drain Constitution
Bolt Ability: Drain Dexterity
Bolt Ability: Drain Intelligence
Bolt Ability: Drain Strength
Bolt Ability: Drain Wisdom
Bolt Ability: Acid
Bolt Ability: Charm
Bolt Ability: Cold
Bolt Ability: Confuse
Bolt Ability: Daze
Bolt Ability: Death
Bolt Ability: Disease
Bolt Ability: Dominate
Bolt Ability: Fire
Bolt Ability: Knockdown
Bolt Ability: Level Drain
Bolt Ability: Lightning
Bolt Ability: Paralyze
Bolt Ability: Poison
Bolt Ability: Shards
Bolt Ability: Slow
Bolt Ability: Stun
Bolt Ability: Web

And then there is the extra work, the invisible one.
(few entries here, each worth tons of scripting)

Developed Planar Rifts instant-damage/instant-kill
invincible effect
Developed new Metamagic system
Rewritten the Spell Resistance check system
Developed persistent Calendar system
Developed the Spell Effects Hold system
Discovered undocumented uses for AOE objects
Discovered undocumented uses of spell effects
Developed centralized handler for spell effects that
"scale" with Game Difficulty
Developed new target-picking system for AOE spells
Fixed minor A.I. glitches (many more await, but
lo-priority)

And there is more again.
Stuff I did in volcanic days, when I pawed and pawed code while I was "in vein" -and did not log every detail of it-.


... and there is much more left to do.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 13-May-09, 00:18:31
Lol, I refuse to flatter you once more! ;)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 12-May-09, 23:18:20
Hello.
Here are the [URL=http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/FoxIcons2.bmp]icons[/URL] for the [b]Protection from Alignment[/b] spell.

On the left are the original icons.
On the right are my icons.

This time I designed the 2 missing symbols from nothing (the Crown for Law, and the upside-down Crown for Chaos).
Then I Frankensteined them.

I have skills, yes? :-)

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 12-May-09, 18:30:10
Thank you.

My 3 metafeats share almost nothing with the original ones.
I had to delete the originals because their behavior could not be changed.
And I introduced my 3 new feats, so I could define them in great detail.

My 3 feats look similar to the originals.
And they look similar to regular feats you can take.

But they are no ordinary feats.
They can be activated or deactivated anytime.
Their many charges are not consumed until you cast a spell.
You do not need to be in combat to use them.

They look out of place when you spot their icons with 80 charges on your quickbar.
When you get used to them, they continue to look out of place because you compare them with regular feats in Light Blue.

But my feats are more like "modifiers" for the next spell you cast.
This makes them unique in the game.

And so I wanted to change their color.
I thought the Dark Green color would be good choice.
But the 2 green icons (Stealth Mode and Search Mode) are unique in their way too.

Purple is already used for spells.
Orange is for spell-scrolls.
Red is for bad spell effects you suffer.
Light Green is for good spell effects.

Then I remember that my feats appear in the same radial-menu where the Horse icon is.
So I made them yellow like the Horse.

Those 3 yellow icons on the quickbar no longer look out of place :-)


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 11-May-09, 21:46:03
Yes those 2 lawful/chaotic icons are definatively better!
The meta's also look good, but the original blue ones look good too. What made you want to change them?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 11-May-09, 19:02:04
Hello.
I believe I did a good job. Not flawless, but close to it.

You do judge, look: [URL=http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/FoxIcons.bmp]Fox Icons[/URL].


On the left you see the 5 icons for my new [b]Magic Circle Against Alignment[/b] spell.
Those are the original 5 NWN icons.

At the center you see the 5 icons for the same spell, but I "built" better icons for the [b]VS Lawful[/b] and [b]VS Chaotic[/b] variants.
Very Frankenstein job :-)


On the right instead are the new Metamagic icons I use for my special feats.
I re-colored them like the Horse Menu (shown for comparison).
I believe the yellow color is better, because it is the color for "Actions".
And my metamagic feats are more like actions you take to enhance the spells.
They are not feats like a Knockdown combat-feat.

I could have colored them Green, of course, like the icons for Search Mode and Stealth Mode.
But I believe yellow is cuter.

Do you like them?


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 11-May-09, 01:32:05
More Honor to [b]Magic Circle Against Alignment[/b].
It had more surprises in store for me.
I told it was a worthy opponent.

I was forced to adapt. Looked very tough this time.
But I succeeded, and learned new tricks thanks to it.
I also got more insight of how the game works.

Now you can discard the Icons flaw I told in previous post.
Fixed flawlessly :-)

I also re-enabled the two "lost" variants of the spell: "VS Chaotic" and "VS Lawful".
All material was there already. I only told the game to use it again.
But I do not like much the icons for Lawful and Chaotic.
They look primitive.
The two icons for Evil and Good are much more elaborate.
Maybe I can do some photo-editing by taking pieces from other icons.
So many icons available, there must be some thing I can use.

I shall show a screen shot of the results, if they get good.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 09-May-09, 20:17:26
Haha.
Miss Genna could almost be my daughter.
Or I could almost be her father.

Do not take me for pervert :-)
I already have a daughter. Skilled in worrying me with that pseudo-man she picked.
If nature gave him any brain, he only uses it to keep the ears from collapsing on each other.
But I should not talk of these private things.


----------------------------------------
Change of subject:

I changed many more spells.
One in particular is: [b]Improved Invisibiity[/b].

The D&D version of it says that you keep your invisibility status even when in combat.
In NWN this behavior is too powerful. So they changed it.
The invisibility is removed when you fight, but you keep a 50% concealment for the spell duration.
I must tell that the true Improved Invisibility effect _is_ present in NWN.
And it works exactly like D&D says. But it was chosen to not make use of it.
And I agree with this choice.

I modified the spell all the same.
I remove the 50% concealment bonus. And the invisibility goes away wen you enter combat.
But I make so that after combat the invisibility returns on you, like the spell was cast again.

If you want a % of concealment, there are other spells you can use.
Like Ghostly Visage or Ethereal Visage.

But I added something in place of Concealment.
When the invisibility is on you, you benefit from a boost to your Hide and Move Silently skills.
This bonus makes the Improved Invisibility harder to pierce than the regular Invisibility is.
If you do not use spells, in fact, the only way to detect an invisible creature is to "perceive" her with successful Spot and Listen checks.
By raising your Hide and Move Silently skills I make those Spot and Listen checks less effective against you.
Flawless logic. As always.



----------------------------------------
Another spell I have the pleasure to say "fixed" is: [b]Magic Circle Against Alignment[/b].
Honors to it, for its supernatural ability to keep me at bay for 2 days!
I shall not forget such worthy opponent.

But I won. Learn the enemy. Find his weakness. Beat him on his ground. Haha!
A new Medal shines on my jacket now.

Magic Circle Against Alignment never worked like it was supposed to.
Not in NWN. Not in SOU. Not in HOTU. Not even with all the patches they made.
It was born flawed, and it stayed unbeaten to this day.

There is no way I can explain all the problems this spell had.
But they are really bad problems, born from heavy limitations of the game-engine.

No matter. I find fast and flawless work-around for them all, except 1 that is really un-fixable.

I must make example, so you can understand:

Imagine there are 2 persons. You and your friend. Or you and your Summon. No difference.
You cast a MCAA::Good on yourself. 3 green icons appear near your portrait.
They mark the 3 enhancements you receive:
- Immunity to Mind Spells,
- Saving Throws increased,
- AC increased.

You cast another MCAA::Good on your friend summon. He gets the same bonus you have.
And if he is a player, he also gets the 3 Icons you have.

Now you step inside the MagicCircle of your friend.
This means he also enters your MagicCircle, because they have same radius.
Both you and your friend have the 3 Icons visible near the portrait.

Now you step outside the MagicCircle of your friend (and so he gets outside your MagicCircle), and you notice your 3 Icons disappear. Your friend lost his 3 Icons too.

The problem is that the Icons are always linked to the LAST effect that is applid to you.
So when you stepped in the Circle of your firend, your Icons were substituted with 3 new ones.
When you stepped outside his Circle, you lost HIS effects from HIS MCAA, and so you lost the 3 Icons from his 3 effects.
But you still possess your 3 effects from the MCAA you did cast on yourself.
But you have no 3 Icons on your screen to show it.

So you believe your spell did go away. In reality it is still working perfect.
You only lost the 3 Icons.

There is no way to fix this bug :-(


-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 06-May-09, 14:34:42
Haha .... miss Genna!
You keep her all to yourself?
Smart!
But that's what fox is known for. LOL
She must be a good teacher as well. Your English has improved fast and remarkably.
Well done!

BTW, Impressive screenshot and impressive work you're doing on all the spells. Can't wait to try it myself.
I'd like to have a go at it once you've finished your modifications. Please send it to me when you're done.
Much appreciated!
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 06-May-09, 01:52:59
By the way.
In the screenshot is Miss Genna.
A little tribute to the beautiful lady who teaches and improves my english.
Kind soul :-)

Of course her real First name is secret. Age, whereabouts, and phone number too.
All secret.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 06-May-09, 01:43:30
I have been modding a lot in the last hours ([URL=http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/Moddalot.jpg]screenshot[/URL]).

They say it is "raining" outside.
Only because it is water.
If if was solid it would be rocking.
I never saw drips so big and mean before. Haha.


My adventure on improving the spell system is going.
I believe I can finally say the worst is done.
I discovered all the problems -I hope-, and found fixes for them (except one. I am working on it).
They only need to be applied.

So what remains is to modify all spells so they use my systems and improvements.
It is relatively fast job.
But the spells are many all the same.

I have changed so many spells lately that I do not remember all I have done.
I added my custom touch where I felt appropriate.

To make some examples...

Now if you have the effects of "Stoneskin" or "Greater Stoneskin" you are Immune to Petrification.

Having the effects of "Premonition" makes you really fastidious:
+2 Dodge AC
+2 Reflex saves
Immune to Critical Hits (and implicitly to Sneak Attacks)
Immune to Knockdown
Damage reduction 30/+5, to absorb up to 400 melee damage, improvable through spell focus feats into:
Damage Reduction 30/+11, to absorb up to 600 melee damage.


But true Physical Damage Immunity is only achieved with the "Epic Warding" Epic Spell.
I have changed it so many times... I hope this one is the last.
Epic Warding now offers 3 sub-radial choices:
Choice 1) Immunity to Slashing and Piercing damage.
Choice 2) Immunity to Slashing and Bludgeoning damage.
Choice 3) Immunity to Bludgeoning and Piercing damage.

Immunity means that. It is Total and Un-Pierceable damage immunity.
Until the spell expires.
Of course you may "cast" only 1 of the 3.
And in case you can cast a second Epic Warding, the new one will substitute the old one.
So you stay vulnerable to 1 physical damage type always.


Other spells I changed include "Horrid Wilting".
Damage type is modified into Positive Energy.
Damage amount is 1d8 per caster level, max 25d8.
Spell Focus in Necromancy can improve the damage to 30d8.
And it benefits from my Metamagic system, so the output damage can be a multi-killer 360 Positive Energy.
If you win the Fortitude save, you take half damage.
The spell can be resisted, of course.
The Fortitude save is specific VS Spells.
So spellcasters -who usually have low Constitution (and so Fortitude and HP)- have a fair chance to save thanks to their SpellCraft Skill ranks -which are usually high-.
Like PHB says, Water Elementals caught by Horrid Wilting do suffer a permanent -2 penalty to all their saving throws.
Most Water Elemental summons will just die because of the damage they receive.
But Druid players shifted in Water Elemental form may survive and learn to hate this spell :-)
The penalty is made Extraordinary Permanent. Need a full Resting to get rid of it.


I have fixed many Mind Affecing and Mind Curing spells:
(these were really tiring to work with)
- Clarity
- Lesser Mind Blank
- Mind Blank
- Charm Person
- Charm Person or Animal
- Charm Monster
- Mass Charm
- Dominate Monster
- ...

I do not rememebr them all. But all suffered from similar problems.
Misleading descriptions, to start: wrong spell schools, phantom counter-spells, untold spell behaviors...
Most bad of all, many Mind ill effects are meant to "scale" or change in other effects completely, based on game difficulty.
But this important rule is rarely honored by the "stock" spells.
Really really bad.


Using these spells make the spellcaster classes very pleasant to play :-)
You have power, and versatility. And spells who _do_ what they say they do.
It is a pity that most of the job I did so far does not show on screen.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-Apr-09, 23:03:31
Hello.

The metamagic system works. No errors. No flaws.
There is a small problem.
Not sure if is fair to call it "problem". Depend on viewpoints, I believe.

Now my spells are becoming too powerful.
I kill a 1200 HP creature in 3 spells (without Instant Death Magic, of course).
I have a guinea pig creature I like. A level 1 standard Orc Warrior.
Like a regular worth-less level 1 Orc Warrior. Just 1200 HP.

Maybe it is no good to waste him in 3 spells, even if he fails all his saves and I am a level 40 killer in tunic.
Maybe I should reduce the benefits of having Spell Focus feats?


The "test" rule of the 2 metapoints per level in a casting class do work better than I believed.
At level 40, 80 metapoints are given.
They look like many.
But they are quick to deplete if you buff-up using metamagic and then start chaining thermo-nuclear spells left and right.
Effects are guaranteed.
But it is guaranteed that you will need to rest too.
So it is wise to not be too happy with my metamagic.
This some-what keep the balance with the spells being so strong now.

Playing hardcore difficulty will help a lot more in this regard.
When your spells can harm you too, you really think twice before boosting everything with metamagic. May boost your own death :-)

I make the Persistent Metamagic Mode auto-deactivate when you run very low on metapoints.
It is a signal for you. 3 signals in 1:
[b]1)[/b] you are being too happy on spells.
[b]2)[/b] you are left with [0 - 6] metapoints: very few! Seek soon a place to Rest.
[b]3)[/b] if you have not destroyed the world and beyond by now, you are too weak for this place.

It is not terribly easy to run out of metapoints, so long you can rest.
But where resting is limited, 80 metapoints are easy to dry.

But again things do balance.
Thanks to my metamagic you now need to cast less spells to achieve same results of before.
So it is like having more spells loaded than before.

Opinions? Objections?


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Apr-09, 04:03:02
Success :-)

When the character is found to possess any 1 of my 3 metamagic feats, 1 extra feat is given to him: the "Persistent MetaMagic Toggle".
The opposite is true. If a character de-levels and loses all my 3 metamagic feats, the extra feat is removed with them. Flawless!

This new feat too appears in the radial menu, under the Class-specific abilities (where the Horse Menu is found).

Feat name and description are temporary.
I would like to find a shorter name and a good description for it.
Any help?

Code complexity was only partly increased.
And it happens that having the Toggle ON allows my code to run fewer instructions, which is good.
Now I must polish it: eliminate the remaining flaws, and optimize for speed.
But the system is working.
Ready to communicate with spells, once they are made aware of it.


----------------------------------------
When you make use of my feats I output floating messages on your character.

In battle the game may output many more floating messages on its own.
I guess the messages from my metafeats need to "stand out", because they are important.
Maybe it is better if I color them different from White?
The player may get immediate feedback of what the message is about.
No need to distract and read it, unless he wants the details.

But any color can be wrong, because all colors find a game-situation in which they blend with the stuff on screen.

Maybe I should make it a Soft Pink.
Similar to White, so it does not look completely "out of place".
Different from White, so you do not have to focus on it to know it is about my metamagic.
And Pink is a nice color :-)

Suggestions? Objections?


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 25-Apr-09, 00:16:16
--NOVA
[b][i]In spite of this potential, however, I guess I would still default to making it a permanent toggle. My reason is once again under the rationale of making it simple for the player(s). If you do not intend for continuing metamagic point usage, you will quickly learn to turn it OFF after the first few times you run out of points.[/i][/b]

You make a good point.

I do see my feats in action. And they work and look good.
I click-click-click them. Like a kid. Haha.
Just to see them in action :-)

But the beauty may fade quickly if I force you to re-click them at every spell.
Combat spellcasting is about fast-thinking. And fast-clicking.
Difficult to master.
More difficult if in Hardcore difficulty, where your spells may hurt you too.
I too believe a good thing to limit the number of times you must re-click my feats.

And I like the idea of the added "Toggle" :-)
In all my honesty I ignore if it can be done.
So I do not confirm anything now. Must experiment.

But [b]if[/b] it can be done, I think it fair to do:

- When Toggle is inactive, metamagic deactivates after you cast.
- When Toggle is active, metamagic does not deactivate after you cast.

- Regardless of Toggle state, metamagic is consumed according to the spell you cast.
Example:
Empower + Maximize + cast Haste.
You consume no meta-points because Haste can benefit only from Extend, which is inactive.

- But regardless of Toggle state, metamagic deactivates if you: Rest, LevelUp, Die, or Move.
For the Rest, LevelUp and Die cases, I discover to have no real choice.
The game-engine interferes with my scripts, at those stages. I _must_ deactivate.

For the Move case I am free to decide.
I believe it a good thing that my meta-feats deactivate if you move.
- You move away when out of combat.
- You move away to flee a foe.
- You move away to escape a hostile AOE spell.
But you can never move _and_ cast at the same time.

So no problem, I guess.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 23-Apr-09, 21:49:54
Your last item is indeed a dilemma.

I know I would personally prefer such abilities as "knockdown" or "whirlwind attack" etc, be a permanent toggle rather than having to keep activating them all the time. However, these are not totally comparable situations. There is still a MAJOR difference between those and your new metamagics. Your metamagics expend points each use whereas abilities like "knockdown" are unlimited uses per day. I can see where it would be easy to unintentionally leave metamagics ON and wind up using all your points unknowingly.

In spite of this potential, however, I guess I would still default to making it a permanent toggle. My reason is once again under the rationale of making it simple for the player(s). If you do not intend for continuing metamagic point usage, you will quickly learn to turn it OFF after the first few times you run out of points.

Of course you could perhaps add additional complexity by having a 3rd toggle which is permanent and make another toggle a temporary one. This solves your dilemma from the players' standpoint, but adds complexity to your scripting task.

NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Apr-09, 17:47:05
I see.
The message is: simplicity is a bliss. Correct?
It can not be argued that mana is simple: you cast if you have enough.

Another point is that you prefer to focus on the fun aspect of the game.
Because games are a chance to escape reality.
And so you prefer to immerse in them without the need to make elaborate thinking.
Because "thinking" brings you back to reality.

Makes sense.


My new metamagic feats in part achieve this.
I did not point out that with my system you do not worry of selecting which metamagic to apply when loading spells.
You simply load the spells you want.
When you cast something, you decide "on the fly" which metamagics to apply to it.

The "hull" of this system is ready. The metamagic feats now appear in the radial menu.
You mirror them on the quickbar and activate/deactivate (toggle?) them in 1 click.
It is a "free" action. The instant you click, the feat is toggled.

Then you cast your spell.

As a "test" rule, I choose to allow 2 meta-points per caster level.
A Wizard(40) currently receives 80 meta points to expend as he likes most.
A Fighter(10) + Wizard(30) receives 60 meta-points.
A Cleric(25) + Wizard(15) receives all 80 meta-points again.

So it is simple: if your class can cast spells -> it gets 2 meta-points per level.
Even more simple: Prestige Classes are ignored.

The meta-points translate into UsesPerDay of your metamagic feats.
So you have direct feed-back of how much metamagic power is left.

Now I am faced with a different dilemma.
A) Should the active metamagic auto-deactivate after you cast 1 spell?
B) Should it stay active until you deactivate explicitly, and you have meta points to burn, and you do not move from the spot, and you do not Rest?
C) Should this all be governed by the difficulty setting?


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 23-Apr-09, 09:17:49
For what my 3 cents is worth, I happen to agree with Simon (Albadaran). I prefer the use of MANA (or any similar substitute) for computer game magics. No one is right. No one is wrong. That's simply my preference.

Don't get me wrong. I'm a huge fan of RPGs (including D&D). I played AD&D going all the way back to 1980 up to about 1987 when I neared graduation from college and ultimately parted ways with my school friends. I even published a (grantedly very short-lived) RPG magazine in 1994 called The Galleon. A copy of the first (and only) issue is on file with the Library of Congress in Washington DC (USA). I dissolved the magazine and the publishing company in mid-1994 in order to follow where my day job was taking me. D&D, though arguably the most popular of the frpg genre, always struck me as the dumbest and frankly the crappiest RPG rules system imaginable. By the time I took over as our group Dungeon Master (I think it was late 1982), I quickly replaced the daft D&D magic system with a Spell Points system of my own concoction. It was loosly mana-like whereby magic practitioners had a fixed number of spell levels of power to expend per day which could be portioned out among their known spells kind of like charges on a staff or a rod. The full and true conception of how I think MAGIC should work is simply too complicated for any computer game. It's even too complicated for any RPG rules system (so I discovered). I made several aborted attempts to codify it in my own RPG system which I called Wovenodrem (it was never completed and thus never published so don't look for it).

To include MAGIC into a computer game mechanic means to keep it horribly simple (or at least seemless to the player) otherwise playing becomes a burden instead of a release. And I just don't happen to think the medium of a computer game is anywhere near adequate to recreate the "roleplaying" aspect and experience of live interaction between individuals who are essentially improvising and making up a story impromptu and real time. To force such a beautiful and powerful concept as the RPG into the shackles of a computer game is, by definition, to bastardize it beyond recognition. And in spite of the phenomenal advances of technology, a computer cannot and likely will never be capable of truly doing justice to that concept.

So when I decide to play a computer bastardized verion of a roleplaying game, I get that it's a bastardization. I don't have a problem with that. I'm not looking for the full RPG experience. What I am really after is being able to interact with a few other real people online (preferrably from around the globe and in far away places) and at the same time getting to live out a few fantasies of being Conan the Barbarian if only for a few hours (or substitute your own favorite fantasy/sci-fi movie hero). The computer game is (at least for me) a chance to be powerful...to totally get my way and yet somehow pretend that I could have lost or failed even though my success was really always guaranteed. It's a brief escape from the crap that is my daily reality where I seem to lose all the damned time. Sharing that brief escape with a few others online helps me believe I'm not totally alone. It's comforting to me to know I can share my brief escapism with people who share similar interests and whom I kind of know. I'm not searching to share this experience with total strangers. If I were, there's plenty of game servers out there to choose from with hundreds (perhaps thousands) of people I have never shared a sentence or a thought with. I'm also not looking to share it with my intimate real-life friends/family either. If I was looking to do that, there's pen and paper RPGs for that and thus no need to settle for a bastardization. Or I can just talk to my friends separate from the rpg. Maybe online RPGs are a sort of free therapy session. I need to feel comfortable enough to share bits of my personal life and yet also know none of this is going to impact or in any way come out in my real daily life.

Now, it's possible I may be alone in what I'm looking for in an online game. For instance, what I liked about ROM2 was the small but tight-knit communtity. It was like a small group of friends sharing a common experience but yet doing so over the internet so it was never really THAT close. It was thus still an escape from real life. I've learned a LOT from this tight little ROM2 community and I'm a much better person for having "met" all of the players. But let's be real. I'm not going to go to the movies or to lunch with any of my fellow online gamers. Nor will any of them be showing up for any of my real life events (my wedding, the birth of my kids, or even a ballgame). I have friends and then I have online friends. Those two groups will never really mix, but thank god for everyone in each of those groups.

I know I've drifted completely from the whole point to your question and my attempt at an answer. I guess in the end perhaps the best answer I can give is just this....when playing an online rpg, I accept and in fact I'm specifically looking for a cheap and pale immitation of a rpg. I can accept that (I mean come on, ROM2 was dog shit of a game). I don't wanna be hassled with all the gory details and complications and game mechanics...blah blah blah. I just wanna beat some orc's skull in with some degree of suspension of disbelief. It's a short movie where I get to participate. I wanna show off that cool new axe my character has or that whirly kick move that takes out seven monsters in one ballet-like move. And while I'm kicking the crap out of that computer-generated monster to relieve some tension, I can tell someone in Bulgaria who I only sort of know all about how my day really sucked and how I'd love to be smashing my boss' face instead of that damned orc. For me, a simple mana-based magic system accomplishes that and does not distract me from that mission.

Likely, this in no way answered what you were really asking. But what I've said is none-the-less the reason why I personally play these online games. And it's the reason I choose to share that gaming experience with a small crowd of people I kind of know but also really never will know. I guess in many ways, the online game walks the fine line between worlds (real life and fantasy, friends and strangers).

My 3 cents, for what it's worth.
-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Apr-09, 04:12:05
I am not disappointed.
I should know that scripting or programming is not for everyone.

You fix my script by changing this:
[i]
// Do we have a live PC?
if (GetIsObjectValid (oPC))
{
// Yes. But if he is too far from us, quit.
if (GetDistanceToObject (oPC) > 10.0f) return;
}
[/i]

Into either this:
[i]
// Do we have a live PC?
if (GetIsObjectValid (oPC))
{
// Yes. But if he is too far from us, quit.
if (GetDistanceToObject (oPC) > 10.0f) return;
}
else
{
return; // <-- the missing return.
}
[/i]

Or this:
(same thing. Only more compact)
[i]
// Do we have a live PC within 10 meters of us...?
if (!GetIsObjectValid (oPC) ||
(GetDistanceToObject (oPC) > 10.0f)) return; // ... no. Quit.
[/i]



----------------------------------------
I disagree with this you said:
[b][i]I sense most players in modules don't like it when they need to rest. If possible everyone tries to get items with unlimited use. Same for spells. You try to move the game closer to AD&d, but many players simply want to hack & slash, without all kind of restrictions.[/i][/b]

If people want hack and slash they can play diablo or similar games.
NWN is a RPG. Role Play Game.
So, by definition, the hack and slash does not fit in it.
It is not born for hack and slash, but there is enough hack and slash in it all the same.
It is born as RPG, but you are not forced to play a role.
Where you see limitations, I see freedom instead.
But maybe I am not using the best words to explain myself.

Anyway. Seeing the "need of Resting" a limitation is inappropriate, I think.
Resting is part of the game. Any class that uses special abilities or spells (all classes!) need to Rest to recharge them.
I believe the Resting adds more depth to the play.
And NWN uses an original spell system. I have not played this many games, but every time there were spells -> there was Mana.
How predictable. And what is "mana" supposed to mean?
NWN approaches the spellcasting job from a different perspective.
You do not have mana. But you can not cast infinite spells either.
It is innovative :-) Though it is copied from D&D.



But it is a bad copy after all.
----------------------------------------
That is why I try to make it better.
The spells really need to be redone.
But there are so many limits I hit...
So I fatigue to find a good compromise between D&D and NWN.
I believe my new spell system will give the due boost to all the spellcasting classes.
The job can be done. It is only long, because there are so many spells.
But I have fun with it, even when testing the new features.


I wait for opinions and ideas of what to do with the metamagic feats, from anyone.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Apr-09, 20:05:00
I'm sorry to disappoint you but its not my purpose to check all kinds of scripts, find the correct arguments, etc. I find it very unsatisfactory when I spend 3 hours on a script finding the evening already has ended, without any progress in maps. That being said:

-I could not find the places in your script to correct, and I won't look any further since it all seems to work correctly.
-I have no clue at all where to paste those 'cleanuprules' in the Arena cleaning script, or how to make it work anyway.

I'm not doing a programming course, I simply want to use what is available, eventually making very small changes as far as I understand the logic.

As for the AD@D spells and feats:
I sense most players in modules don't like it when they need to rest. If possible everyone tries to get items with unlimited use. Same for spells. You try to move the game closer to AD&d, but many players simply want to hack & slash, without all kind of restrictions. As for me, I prefer a systetm with "Mana". No resting, but a replenishing amount of many needed to cast spells. So I"m afraid I can't help you on this...
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Apr-09, 15:36:19
I was here for another reason:


I ask for your opinion.
Listed in alphabetical order:
Albadaran, bbKing, Lord Atton, NOVA. jultknight.
And anyone unmentioned and their cat is welcome to tell his opinion.

Read with care.

NWN is a game with many hardcoded things. And they can not be changed.
In some case it is possible to change them by substitution with a complete custom system.

I never liked the metamagic system implemented in NWN.
You can not combine different meta feats. And some meta feats are missing, like the "Heighten Spell" metamagic.

D&D allows for creative uses of spells.
A spellcaster may combine different meta feats together for a single spell.
And it works so long the final spell fits in the 9th Tier of spells.
To make example: in D&D you can cast a Maximized and Empowered Fireball.
The Fireball is level 3. With Maximize metamagic it becomes +3 = 6.
With Empower metamagic it becomes +1 = 7.
So you prepare this Fireball spell in a level 7 spellslot, and it benefits from both meta feats.
All meta feats can be combined, so long they can apply, and so long the final spell level is max level 9.

Interesting, is not it?

In NWN this mechanism is forbidden.
The metamagic feats and their uses are hard-coded, and nobody can change them.

So I thought to discard this mechanism of NWN. And adopt a custom one, in which you *activate* a number of metamagic feats (much like you activate a *Power Attack* feat) and then what spell you cast -> it benefits from the active metamagics (so long the total spell level does not exceed 9).

This allows for more freedom in spellcasting.
But I stil do not like it.

So alternatively I may allow a player to use any metamagic combo on any spell level (including 9th level). But then I must find some rule to regulate the behavior.

I like the second option.
For the rule, I thought that an amount of metamagic "points" to expend per day could work good.

So the new metamagic feats would consume a number of points every time you activate them. These points are shared among all metamagics you have.
And each metamagic feat deducts a specific amount of points from the total at disposal.

Example:
Suppose you have 30 meta-points to expend per day.
- Extend Spell would consume 1 point per use.
- Empower Spell would consume 2 points per use.
- Maximize Spell would consume 3 points per use.

So you can either make use of Extend spell 30 times in a day, or you may use Empower spell 15 times per day, or Maximize 10 times per day.
If you combine them, the effects are cumulative.
So if you always use Extend + Maximize + Empower, all the 30 points are used up if you cast 5 spells.
When all points are lost, no more metamagic is available until you Rest.

Do you like this mechanism?

If yes, help me define the exact !!flawless!! rules to define how many meta-points are allowed per day.
I do NOT want this to be dependant on other feats you must take (like "Turn Undead" who gets more uses per day if you take the "Extra Turning" feat).

So how would you calculate the amount of meta-points per day?


I have not begun with the coding of this idea.
I can not start if I do not have the rules for it defined in advance.
So shoot your opinions and ideas. I do listen.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Apr-09, 15:35:20
Oh! I get it.

My script [b]is[/b] flawed, but it does [b]not[/b] flaw.
The "missing return" is the flaw.
The counter-flaw is where I get the "location of oPC" to spawn the dragon.

You see the comment where I say I disagree with your decision to spawn it there?
But I keep your original intent, and spawn dragons at the PC location anyway.

But if oPC in invalid, so is the location of oPC.
And no Dragon can be spawned at that location.
That is why you do not see it going wrong.
Haha.

To introduce one flaw, I introduced a second one that nullified the first.

My code is self-preserving :-)
The fox stays un-beaten.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Apr-09, 15:24:21
Haha!
I admit it, yes.
When I browse the www I am on a separate machine.
My personal machine has no connection to the internet, and NWN is installed there.
The mystery is explained :-)

For the flaw in my script: you do confuse me!
I am surprised to learn it does not work as I planned.
Can it be another bug in NWN ?

Look in my script, where I test if the oPC is valid and then I test if the oPC is within 10 meters distance.
Do not you notice a missing portion there?
In case no PC is found (and so the PC in invalid) the script does not quit!
The flow will proceed to spawn dragons (if needed): and no PC is around to justify it.

Can it be that GetNearestXXX() function I used does scan the whole module in search for objects who are trapped by the filter?
If so, then my script can only fail if the module is a server and no player is online.
Meaning that it will never fail if the module is run in Single player mode.
But I find it very strange that it should work as so...
It is non-sense.

You be wise if you modify the script, for extra safety.
Substitute the GetNearestXXX() stuff with a pair GetFirstObjectInShape() + GetNextObjectInShape().
So you are sure to check a very small portion of the surroundings of the statue (and fast too!), and properly trap and handle all cases.



----------------------------------------
In regard to the "better way" for cleanup, yes there is one.
I ignore who wrote that DestroyObject() check as so, but whoever was able to write THAT, can commit any crime in this world.

Proper Area cleanup is made in else-way.
You run a function that does the following:

- Scan the area for objects.
- For each object, you check if it is a Creature, or an Item, or the "Remains" of a dead creature.

The "Remains" is a special object.
Regardless of Appearance_Type and Contents, all "Remains" have a TAG-string "BodyBag".
So that is how you know when a object is a "Remains" of a dead creature.

Knowing this you can structure your cleanup code like so (in meta-code):

[i]oThing = GetFirstThing()
if (oThing has TAG "BodyBag")
{
// this is the "Remains" of a dead creature.
}
else if (oThing is an Item)
{
// this is an item sitting on ground.
}
else if (oThing is a Creature)
{
// this is a living creature.
}
oThing = GetNextThing()[/i]

From there you destroy the object (and/or its contents), if you wish.
But never destroy what is marked as "plot". So first check it with GetPlotFlag().

"Remains" have an inventory with at least 1 item inside.
Makes sense. If they are empty "Remains" they do not appear at all.
"Remains" automatically disappear if they are emptied.
So cycle its inventory and destroy everything inside that is non-Plot.

Items may or may not have an inventory.
A Sword does not have inventory. But A Bag of Holding does.
Both are Items.
So you should check the presence of an inventory for that item, first.
Attempt to empty the inventory. If you find Plot objects inside, the inventory can not be emptied fully, and so you should not destroy the Item container.
Otherwise destroy the Item too (if it is non-Plot).

Creatures should be checked to see if they were spawned by an Encounter.
If they are, destroy them if they are non-Plot.
Destroyed creatures leave no "Remains" behind.
When an Encouter loses all spawned creatures, the Encounter is reset and start the internal count-down for the next activation.
So in this case you may wish to ALSO scan for Encounters and reactivate them manually (without wait for the count-down to reach 0).

If you think this is too much work, thing again.
It takes more words to explain it. It is quick to code. Good exercise too.

Note that you may want to check if YOUR statue-spawned dragons are around.
They are not Encounter-spawned creatures, and so need a dedicated check.

Also note that 2 of the standard Placeables can spawn Undead creatures.
These placeables names are "Skeletal Remains" and "Zombie Corpse" (if I am not confusing).
You can locate them in the Standard Palette for the Placeables.
In any case you know you have found them when you see they have a Heartbeat script attached.
All other similar Placeables will have no scripting.
(and note that those heartbeat scripts have a bug: when a Zombie is spawned, there is no Summoning effect visible. But when a Skeleton is spawned, you see the summoning effect).
Same rule for the dragons here: those Undead creatures need a dedicated check, or they survive your cleanup.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 21-Apr-09, 21:21:39
You confuse me Fox. Your script works fine and as far as I can see there are no flaws. I made a statue and a boulder spawning the dragons, and both do it the way it should be. Kill one at the boulder and a new one spawns there, kill one at the statue and a new one spawns at the statue... No problems found!

But I'm afraid that [i]you[/i] are the one who does not read well. Or you should have noticed that the Ingos Arena OnExit event has a nasty bug that would make every object disappear on exiting. The original code was:

if (GetMaxHitPoints(oObject)=0)

DestroyObject(oObject);

This destroys every object, indluding area transitions. I changed it into:

if (GetMaxHitPoints(oObject)>10)

DestroyObject(oObject);

Which only destroys living creatures, as its meant to be. But I'm sure there would be a better way. Now admit it: you did not read that script, did you??
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 21-Apr-09, 16:03:32
--Albadaran
[b][i]It works fine.[/i][/b]

May I say something and you do not get angry?
My experience tell that people rarely read when you invite them to :-)
So I wonder if you tried my script.
I introduced a conceptual flaw in it, and you would have noticed it if you would have tried it.
The flaw purpose was to force you to read the script and fix it.
For your own good, actually. My ego is big as-is and needs no inflate further.

Was I right?
So you did not try the script, did you? :-)


----------------------------------------
I disagree with your statement about the cleanup.
The cleanup is very important. All the creatures you leave behind will make the Module/Server more busy and more busy.
If those creatures sit and do nothing, with nobody around, it does not change the truth that the module does give them attention every few seconds, and so CPU-slice that could be used elsewhere.

Do know that Encounters can be cleared and reset "on the fly", so that 1 moment after the cleanup has run, if a player travels that way and triggers the Encounters, the creatures are spawned immediately.
There is no need to leave the monsters be so that a running player will find them "at the door" when he backtracks.
All the opposite. Fresh spawned creatures have full health and their abilities and spells are charged. So they are more dangeorus than potentially used up monsters that a running player may have survived by luck and not pluck.

And if you want to have monsters "at the door", why you do not give the permission to travel to other areas and so CHASE the running player? ;-)
Look inside "x2_inc_switches" to know more.



--Albadaran
[b][i]And I had to use a littel 'trick' to prevent all my objects (indluding doors) to be deleted: the MaxHitpoint value.[/i][/b]

Trick? Doors? Maybe you are over-engineering your code.
Cleanup is about Encounter-creatures, their Remains, and Items.
Very straight operation. No need for tricks.

Why are you destroying Doors? Can you tell?


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 20-Apr-09, 21:17:48
Lol, Fox, Don't invite me to become lazy hehe. I was proud I added that +1 loop in the Nwn forum script. There are 101 scripts I would like to add, and people who can do that flawlessny are very wanted ;)

It works fine.
As for your remark about cleaning up maps: The only scrip I use for that is s_cleartrash onexit. That does not remove creatures and I don't think it's advisable to remove living creatures. It would make gameplay too easy. If someone flies desperatly to another map, he should be aware that the same creatures await him on his way back, just at the exit he just used. But if its really causing a problem I could add a script that I use in the Ingos Arena (check it if you like - onexit cleararena) and add a delay command. That would make all creatures dissapear in an hour or so. Unfortunately it does not cleanup trash on the ground (yet). And I had to use a littel 'trick' to prevent all my objects (indluding doors) to be deleted: the MaxHitpoint value.

Anyway, thanks once more. This should stop those rushing monks, cheating the map by never entering combat... Lol!
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 20-Apr-09, 03:15:38
--Albadaran
[b][i]I can't read your script because Word tells me I have no rights to open it.[/i][/b]

??? So strange.
I use windows Wordpad to avoid these problems.
Previous readme I sent you was made with Wordpad too. And you could read it.
I send you another mail. Please check.



--Albadaran
[b][i]But it does not matter, read the link I provided you and you will see that the problem has been solved. Nevertheless, I'm curious about your solution :)[/i][/b]

Yes I see their solution. They fail to solve 1 problem.
But you did not specify for it either, so they did not think about it.
But they should have, because it is so obvious problem.

Indeed you want to see my script.
My solution allows you to place multiple statue spawners next to each other, and they will NOT conflict with one another.
The other solution (their solution) will fail in such case and count dragons belonging to other statues, when they are close enough.

So it all depends on the level of flawlessness you wish.
I am the Flawless One, of course. Do expect no less :-)


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 20-Apr-09, 00:33:54
Fox,
I can't read your script because Word tells me I have no rights to open it.

But it does not matter, read the link I provided you and you will see that the problem has been solved. Nevertheless, I'm curious about your solution :)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Apr-09, 14:50:56
-- bbKing

Hello.

What I am doing to the spells can be called "bug ridding".
I add some ego in the process. Flashy lights, big words, hand gestures.
The stuff to impress people :-)

My work is in progress. Not complete, but usable.
My initial goal was to change a few spells.
But I hit some problems and found solutions to them.
But the problems are NWN-wide and os must be the solutions.
So I am forced to modify ALL spells.
It is more than I asked for. But it can be done.

If you want to see what I did so far, I can send you a hak resource.
You plug it in a module, rebuild the module, and go play.
But remember it is work in progress.
There are over 400 spells and spell-like abilities.
So far I changed 70 or so of them. A small portion.
So you may not find it satisfactory.
And you must play Wizard if you want access to all the spells I changed.
I have modified the spell descriptions to describe their new behavior.
But I have not changed the spell _scrolls_ descriptions.
So you need to have a spell learned if you want to know it was changed by me.
I repeat: work in progress.

I have done more things than that. Things I have not told here.
My Area of Effect spells will properly honor the rules of engagement defined by the Area PVP status and the Game difficulty.
BioWare spells instead do not.
If you enable Hardcore mode and play with BioWare spells, you are able to blow yourself up when you are NOT supposed to.
This is most wrong. It penalyzes spellcasters to no end.
And there is no way to address the problem if you do not change ALL spells.
Blame BioWare, not me.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Apr-09, 14:47:11
Albadaran, check your e-mail.

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Apr-09, 03:37:26
Hi fox
Allthough I don't understand anything of the game mechanics or scripting or language, I always read what you have to say with great interest and I appreciate all the time and effort you put into it, even for the benefit of such a small "audience" as this forum.
Your expertise in this matter is obvious. I just wish my little brain could grasp it all.
I was just wondering what you do with all the improvements you're making. In what module you're putting it all?
If it would be the Rhun module I'd be more than happy to make this module with all your improvements available to the general public, not just for this relatively small community.
I know your internet connection is limited, but maybe we could embark on something that you'd feel comfortable enough to be involved in?
Just an idea of mine.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Apr-09, 01:40:55
Hello.
I understand you do not know all the fine-prints of the [b]Darkness[/b] spell.
Or you would not tag it "useless".
So it is normal that you do not perceive the goodness of the improvements I have done to it.

I start with saying:
The combo Darkness + Ultravision is the most bugged one in the entire spell system.
You can not be aware of all the problems of Darkness if you do not have eyes for them.
So it is point-less that I explain them.

I have difficulties to make a comprehensive speech from begin to end without repeating lot of stuff.
So I chart the rules who govern how Darkness work:

Without Ultravision spell...
- From inside Darkness: you can not see any creature inside or outside the Darkness.
- From outside Darkness: you can not see any creature that is inside the Darkness.
With Ultravision spell...
- From inside Darkness: you can see any creature inside or outside the Darkness.
- From outside Darkness: you can see any creature that is inside the Darkness.

Take them to the letter!
They are the rules for the NWN Darkness.
The modifications I made to my Darkness do not change these rules.

So think about them. You should sense a "hole" somewhere.
When you find the hole, you can find some creative uses for Darkness ;-)
And do not let me catch you say again that Darkness is useless.



-- Albadaran:
[b][i]Than we also have a balancing issue: The casters of Darkness often combine it with other spells. Often its hard to combat them, not because of the spell effects, but because of the lag they cause. And so it happens that relatively low level creatures take much longer time to kill (with less XP) than a lot of stronger creatures without spell effects. This is one of the bigger annoyances in the game.[/i][/b]

Spellcasters make use of spells. It is their job.
Spells are the biggest part of the game.
They are everywhere in NWN, always in use and in many forms.
What you call "spell" is only a subset of what the spell-system of NWN does.

Every class and monster does use spells.
When your Fighter uses Knockdown, he is calling a spell: a script attached to his Knockdown feat.
And that spellscript will execute, pick the target, check for validity, calculate some stuff using values taken off you and the target, and finally apply the effect.
It is exactly what a regular spell does, without the flashy lights and sounds (which have NO lag-cost because they are always handled client-side).

I may shock you now, but the true lag-makers in NWN are the melee and ranged warriors.
Because every weapon and armor and shield is customizable and can be infested with scriptable custom properties that may be applied and removed at any time, there is no way for the game to optimize this process for speed.

The "hit-data" will travel from You to the Server.
The Server will run code to execute the custom scripts relevant to what you are doing.
The Server will dispatch the data back to all clients.
This can happen up to 10 times in 6 seconds, for a single creature who "attempts to hit" something.
In fact if you miss the target this work is done all the same.

Spells are different. They are not customizable in game. They are fixed.
You have a spell, or you have it not.
You use a spell, or you use it not.
So you cast a spell, and the data travels from You to the Server.
The Server quickly processes what is there to process.
The Server sends back the results to all clients.

Apparently it is the same work-load as hitting with a weapon.
But there are differences:
Spells can be cast no faster than 3 times in 6 seconds (with some exceptions) and so cause much less "travels" to and from the Server.
Spells usually pick lot of targets at once, and all are processed Server-side in 1 shot.
Spells are -generally- more powerful than your average sword, and may produce, in 1 shot, the same result of 300 hits from your sword.
Spell fought fights also tend to end very quickly.

Summoned creatures have a lg-cost of 0. Those creatures are handled server-side and are no different from any other NPC (or monster).


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Apr-09, 13:05:42
To my opinion Darkness as it is now, and as you propose it to be, is and will remain a fairly useless spell. Why? Because its easy to run out of the AOE, leaving the caster and his/her companions in the darkness as sitting ducks waiting for the final shot.

Another thing: why would someone cast darkness if he/she would suffer the same penalty? Blindness would be a good alternative.

Than we also have a balancing issue: The casters of Darkness often combine it with other spells. Often its hard to combat them, not because of the spell effects, but because of the lag they cause. And so it happens that relatively low level creatures take much longer time to kill (with less XP) than a lot of stronger creatures without spell effects. This is one of the bigger annoyances in the game.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Apr-09, 03:11:19
Hello.

----------------------------------------
I changed: [b]Cone of Cold[/b]
Cold spells are the most interesting I believe.

The description of this spell talks of an intense frost.
Causing 1d6 Cold per caster level (max level 15).

I added a little touch.
The frost is so extreme that little razor sharp ice crystals form in the process, and provide an additional 1d2 Slashing damage per caster level (max level 15).
This is physical damage, typical of Swords.
I give it no attack bonus, so it can not pierce any Damage Reduction.

I add support for Spell Focus feats in Evocation school.
With:
- Spell Focus : +1d6 Cold, +1d2 Slashing damage
- Greater Spell Focus : +2d6 Cold, +2d2 Slashing damage
- Epic Spell Focus : +2d6 Cold, +2d2 Slashing damage

A Spell Resistance check is allowed to resist the spell.
If not resisted, an Evasive Reflex save is allowed for half or no damage.

The Reflex save is made VS Cold.
But it implicitly affect the Slashing damage too, because it depends on the amount of Cold you suffer. Logical.



----------------------------------------
I changed: [b]Darkness[/b]
Completely. The BioWare spell is a mess of broken rules.
NWN Darkness bends many rules that are instead respected in all other spells.
But I understand this is necessary, because this spell is so special.

For example it will affect everyone, friend or neutral or foe, ignoring PVP and Difficulty settings for the most part.
Everyone will suffer the Darkness. But not the caster. He is spared from it.
There is no logic in this.

In the D&D version there is no Spell Resistance check. So Darkness is invincible.
But in D&D it can be countered in many ways.
This mechanism was too complex to implement in NWN.
And so, Darkness is not invincible. But it is _almost_ invincible.

The Spell Resistance check run in the BioWare spell is something unique.
It will consider Darkness defeated ONLY if you have a form of Magic Immunity to it.
So you can have 255 Spell Resistance, but you count as having 0 Spell Resistance.
If you have a Spell Mantle, you count as if you do not have it.
But your spell mantle will be ruined all the same, as if the spell was absorbed!
Most wrong and unfair.


My new Darkness spell:
I too make my Darkness much special.
Everyone in the AOE will be affected by the Darkness.
Everyone is everyone. No exceptions.

At every round you spend in the AOE, the spell attempts to affect you.
If you can resist the spell: you are safe for that round.
If you do not resist, you get darkened and stop seeing past your pupil.
Logical.
Spell Mantles shall be taken in proper consideration.
If you have one, you are safe. For _that_ round.

If you are already affected by Darkness, and you equip something that gives you immunity to it, or cast a spell mantle on yourself, when the next round comes the effects of Darkness shall be removed from you.
Fair.

If the caster of the Darkness is killed, the spell fades away immediately.
In the actual BioWare spell, instead, the Darkness will survive the death of its caster.
Which is wrong.

Darkness does not inflict any damage.
But I added a special support for Spell Focus feats in Evocation school.
Each of those feats will make the Darkness you cast count as 1 spell level higher.
This behavior is most out of the rules, I admit.

But there is a reason: Darkness is only level 2.
And my darkness will honor _all_ the rules for Spell Resistance checks.
Like all AOE spells, it can be dispelled directly.
Being level 2, any dispeller will dispel it at the first try.
So it is very easy to defend against my Darkness.

But if the level of the spell is increased?
Some of the common ways to defend against it cease to be effective.
If level becomes 3 (Spell Focus), the "Ethereal Visage" spell can no longer shield you.
If level becomes 4 (Greater Spell Focus), the "Minor Globe of Invulnerability" too can not shield you.
If level becomes 5 (Epic Spell Focus), the "Globe of Invulnerability" too becomes useless against Darkness.
At that point you need an Immunity from items (if you have any), or you need to cast a Spell Mantle.

But spell mantles are doomed to fade.
If my Darkness counts as a level 5 spell (instead of 2), your mantle depletes much faster.
See my logic?
The adept evoker can create Darkness spells difficult to resist.

Duration is the same as original: 1 Turn per caster level.
Metamagic applies as before: Extend, Still or Quicken.

Dispellers will still wash away a Darkness easily, even if I change the spell level.
Dispellers are handled by the core functions. I can not intervene there.
I should write my scripted version of the dispellers to address problems like these.
But it is SO elephant work...


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 15-Apr-09, 16:24:42
The format of the text got messed up.

When I wrote:
{A} versus {B}

the {B} got interpreted as the begin of "Bold".
It looks ugly now. Sorry.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 15-Apr-09, 16:17:45
I have changed a few more spells.
- [b]Lesser Planar Binding[/b]
- [b]Planar Binding[/b]
- [b]Greater Planar Binding[/b]
- [b]Banishment[/b]

I also plan to change [b]Dismissal[/b]. It is much similar to Banishment.
Almost twins, but different spell levels.
I do not like it. I will think of something appropriate for it.

For now, the 4 spells I listed all have in common the ability to target a specific Racial type: the Outsider and do some scary harm to it.

Maybe I said it already. Maybe not.
Monks are over-powered in NWN. They have all the advantages of the core class Monk of D&D, but they do NOT have the Monk biggest weakness: a Monk with 20 or more levels, reaches "enlightenment" (gets the glowing eyes because of it) and becomes "Outsider".

So he ceases to be human, dwarf, elf, what was it when he was born.
And becomes Outsider.

In NWN this does not happen. It is time to make Justice.
Spells exist that are tailored to be nasty versus Outsiders.

The spell description of those spells will not say it, but all those spells can now be used against any character (PC or NPC) who possess at least 20 levels in Monk class.

Monks beware! Banishment can be lethal to you.
If the enlightened Monk fails a Will Save versus Banishment, he is instantly banished.


-- Technical aspects:
It will be an "instant kill" only for Monk PCs and Monk NPCs that are "Associate" of a PC (like a Monk Henchmen you may have). The special treatment is for necessity. If I destroy their body, I break the module plot (if any exist).

But in all other cases it will not be instant death, it will be instant "destruction".
The creature body will disappear (to simulate she returned to her home Plane), and so the spellcaster will receive no XP for her death. In fact D&D explains the creature is alive elsewhere. Unable to return, but alive. So it is not a true kill.

Note that Banishment is not "Death Magic".
Immunity to Instant Death will be properly ignored.



----------------------------------------
A friendly word for Monk players:

Monks are known to possess typical high Will, or high Spell Resistance.
Rarely they possess high both, because they have to sacrifice much if they want it.

When you plan your Monk character, your best bet in NWN is to aim either for very high Spell Resistance, or for no extra Spell Resistance at all, other than what you get for being a Monk.

The majority of spells in the game allow for a Spell Resistance check (SR check).
What does it mean exactly?
When you become target of a spell who gives you a SR check, you are given a chance to force the spell to ignore you, as if you do not exist.
That is what SR check is for. It is a do or do_not thing.

Spell Resistance is the Armor Class equivalent for spells.
But if for AC we can say: the more, the better.
For SR it is not so simple.

The formula used for a SR check is:
[i][A] versus [B][/i]

Where [A] is equal to:
[i]CasterLevel + SpellPenetrationBonus + 1d20[/i]

And [B] is equal to:
[i]TargetTotalSpellResistance[/i]

If [A] is greater than or equal to [B], the spell wins, and the target suffers from the spell.

You can see by the formula that a SR check is almost always lost.
In fact a Wizard(40) with the Epic Spell Penetration feat could score an [A] term ranging from 40+6+1 = [b]47[/b] to 40+6+20 = [b]66[/b]

So to have the certainty that you are safe from 99% of spells, you need a Spell Resistance of at least 67.
It is insane high.
Only a VERY dedicated Monk can reach it.
And he needs lot of powerful Epic feats, thus sacrificing other useful things he may get.

But if the Wizard is a NPC like those of Rhun... then he may be a Wizard(60), and his [A] term may range from 67 to 86.
Nobody can have 87 Spell Resistance in this game, and so nobody can ever be surely_safe from such spellcaster.

Note that "CasterLevel" is the level of the "Casting Class" used for that spell.
It is not the same as the total Character Level.
A Fighter(5) + Wizard(35) would have a CasterLevel of 35, not 40.
A Cleric(3) + Wizard(12) has a CasterLevel of 3 for the Cleric spells, and a CasterLevel of 12 for the Wizard spells.
You know the difference because you have 2 different spellbooks to load spells in, in this case.

A Sorcerer(10) + Wizard(30) is a particular case.
If both classes have access to the "Fireball" spell, it makes sense to load and launch the Fireball from the Wizard spellbook, always. Because it gets a CasterLevel of 30.
If you do it from the Sorcerer spellbook, your Fireball gets a CasterLevel of only 10.

But this last example is stupid. Never mix Sorcerer and Wizard classes.
There is nothing a Sorcerer can do, that a Wizard of same level can not do times better.
What a statement :-) Applause!


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 15-Apr-09, 02:36:07
--fox
[b]At level 40, and with Epic Spell Focus, it is possible to cast an Empowered Evard's Black Tentacles that spawns a max of 75 tentacles, 14 of which are able to hit a single target, dealing 10-15 bludgeoning damage (per tentacle!) with attack bonus of +5.[/b]



Errata corrige:

in the above case the empowered damage is not [b]10-15[/b].
It is [b]15-22[/b], instead. Per tentacle.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 15-Apr-09, 02:31:27
Hello.

I have modified the spell: [b]Evard's Black Tentacles[/b]

If I am asked to list my favorite spells, Evards is one of them. One of the Top Them :-)
So this time I went through extra trouble to make it good.

Must be said, the D&D version of Evards is much different.
The tentacles there have HP, and AC, and can be harmed.
And they hold a single target for the whole spell duration.

Of course this is too much power for a NWN level 4 spell.
But if you think the NWN implementation is good, think again.
It is full of bugs. And hacks too.

Good thing is they removed the Spell Resistance check in patch 1.69.
It is not there in D&D, and in NWN some particular spells have their SR check completely bugged. Evards is one of them.

The NWN spell in a nut-shell:
A number of 10 feet long tentacles are spawned: 1d4 +CasterLevel tentacles. CasterLevel is capped at 20.
So at max power it is from 21 to 24 tentacles (31 to 36 if empowered).
Each tentacle attempts a *grapple check* (unshown to the player) to see if it *hits*.
In case of hit, the tentacle does 1d6+4 bludgeoning damage.
When at least 1 tentacle succeed in hitting you, you are required to win a Fortitude Save. Or be paralyzed for 1 Round.

Looking at the scripts, I learned that the tentacles are split equally on the available targets. But no more than half the tentacles are ever allowed to concentrate on a single target.
The tentacles have a weird attack bonus of +2.
I wonder why they choose +2. The common damage reductions cover +1, +3, +5, +10.
Having a +2 attack bonus is like having +1.

Anyway, I make things differently. Scientifically.
Evards deserve it. Too good a spell to treat it poorly.

In my version:
The tentacles spawned are: 1d10 +CasterLevel. Full CasterLevel is allowed.
So at max power you may spawn from 41 to 50 tentacles (61 to 75 if empowered).

The tentacles are 5 feet long. They are spread uniformly over the Area Of Effect (AOE).
Why I say "uniformly"? Because the NWN spell description says "randomly".
Their "randomly" is an excuse to do poor calculations.
I consider the tentacles spread in a way that they uniformly cover the AOE.
Then I calculate the density of Tentacles per Square Meter (game works in meters, not feet).
Then, based on the number of tentacles spawned, on their density, and on the current position of the target inside the AOE, I calculate precisely how many tentacles can reach that target.
Said in other way, I calculate how many tentacles is the target in reach of, at any given time (I think it is correct grammar. Is it?)

So if you stay near the edge of the AOE, you get the attention of only 1 tentacle, maybe 2.
As you walk more inside the AOE, approaching the center of it, you move yourself in reach of more and more tentacles, up to a maximum of 9 (if you spawned max tentacles).
This 9 is not hard-coded. It is the result of the calculations from above.

If I make the tentacles longer, you can get hit by many more of them, because -logical enough- each tentacle can cover more ground.
In fact I originally wanted to keep the 10 feet length. But with my formula, having tentacles those long would make a target succumb, because the AOE is only 5 meters radius, and there would be a big portion of it covered by all tentacles together.
And so you could get all 21-24 hits, and be reduced to a pulp in a short time.
That is why I cut their length to 5 feet.

Damage from tentacles is unchanged. It is again 1d6+4 bludgening.
But the attack bonus is 0, not +2.

The *grapple check* the tentacles make is changed.
In the formula does appear the caster level.
The NWN original spell would adopt a max caster level of 20.
I allow for the full caster level.
So the better level you are, the easier for each tentacle to win the grapple check and cause damage.
In my current grapple check formula, only a level 40 Fighter has fair chances to beat the grapple check and escape a part of the tentacles.
Other than that, only Large or Huge creatures can have enough luck to win some checks.

I too give the target a Fortitude save to avoid paralysis for 1 Round.
As I said I have cut the tentacles length to 5 feet, but I still consider them Large creatures.
So like in the original spell, the tentacles are unable to target any Small or Tiny creature (like Goblins, Pixies, Halflings...)

I added support for spell focus feats in Conjuration school.
With:
- Spell Focus: +1 damage per tentacle, +1 attack bonus
- Greater Spell Focus: +2 damage per tentacle, +2 attack bonus
- Epic Spell Focus: +2 damage per tentacle, +2 attack bonus

Full metamagic applies.
Note that this spell is best used Empowered. In fact the empowering does affect it twice.
One time for the number of tentacles spawned.
And one time for the damage per tentacle.

At level 40, and with Epic Spell Focus, it is possible to cast an Empowered Evard's Black Tentacles that spawns a max of 75 tentacles, 14 of which are able to hit a single target, dealing 10-15 bludgeoning damage (per tentacle!) with attack bonus of +5.
Do I need to explain the damage it can output per round? :-)

Note that I fixed the bug for the visual effect.
If the caster of a Evard is killed, the visual effect of the tentacles no longer persists for the intended spell duration, thus giving you the false idea that the spell did survive its creator.

And note that while the Spell Resistance check was removed from the spellscript, in the toolset the old item property for the "Immunity vs spell: Evard's Black Tentacles" still exist and can be used.
But the spell will correctly ignore it.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 13-Apr-09, 15:42:02
I thank you.
But you are so excited for that little thing?
Better I do not show you what else can be done.
You may faint, and fall, and bash your nose!
And statistics tell that there is never a pillow in front of you when you faint face-down!
So I do not want responsibility for your nose.


My work on spells is moving on a higher level than I planned initially.
Partly because it can be done. So I do it. (Gordon Gekko would. Why I should not?)
Partly because of necessity. I have found a Very Big Bug infesting all spells of a specific type.
The bug originates inside the game engine. It has always been there. And it is today.
I have devised a scripted solution for it. Between analysis, implementation, testing and speed optimization, and polishing, it costed me 5 days and over 1400+ lines of code.
The end result is flawless.


--------------------
I changed the "Cloudkill" spell.

Other than fixing the bugs in it, I have added my personal touch.
Originally I wanted to make it more similar to the D&D version, which clearly talks of a "moving" cloud.
But in NWN it is no coincidence that you have no moving cloud effects like those.
It is a limitation of the game engine.

In truth, I have found a way to bypass that limit and create true moving clouds.
The effect looks great (in the process I discovered/fixed the Very Big Bug).
But then I found out that there is no real place in NWN for self-moving AOE spells.

So I keep Cloudkill as a static cloud, like it currently is in NWN.

My spell:
A cloud of noxious vapors forms on ground.
Hostiles within suffer a different fate, depending on their HD (HitDice).
From 1 to 3 HD = Instant death, no save.
From 4 to 6 HD = Win fortitude save, or be instantly killed.
Over 6 HD = 2d6 Negative Energy damage per round.

Like I did for my Acid Fog (some posts below):
Weaponry exposed to the AOE may be contaminated by it, and gain a +1d4 Negative Energy damage bonus, for a short duration.

Spell Focus feats in Conjuration school will improve the effects as follow:
- Spell Focus: +1 HD extended thresholds, +1d6 Negative damage per round.
- Greater Spell Focus: +2 HD extended thresholds, +1d6 Negative damage per round.
- Epic Spell Focus: +3 HD extended thresholds, +1d6 Negative damage per round.

So for a spellcaster with Epic Spell Focus (Conjuration), the spell becomes:
From 1 to 9 HD = Instant death, no save.
From 10 to 18 HD = Win fortitude save, or be instantly killed.
Over 18 HD = 5d6 Negative Energy damage per round.

Original NWN Cloudkill would only apply one of the 3 effects to a creature.
For example, if it was a 3 HD creature, it would have been killed.
But if the creature was Immune to Death Magic, she would suffer no other ill effects.

In my spell instead, if a creature survives the Instant Death cases, she still suffers the Negative damage per round, for her persistence inside the cloud.
So this spell is now a "silver bullet". You enter it, you take damage.
This is why one of the 3 "why" I keep the Negative damage low, even for an Epic spellcaster.
The 2nd why is that Negative energy is supposed to have healing effects on Undeads. So does my spell.
The 3rd why is that this is a level 5 spell only. Too low to justify "great" power.
There are many better spells to choose from if you want to cause mass destruction.

The ability to instantly kill any unprepared 9-HD creature with this level 5 spell looks too much.
But do not forget that to be able to do that you need the Epic Spell Focus, and you can only gain it starting from level 21.
I believe it fair that at level 21 you can slay anyone with less than half your levels.
What are you Epic for, otherwise? :-)

-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 13-Apr-09, 13:04:08
Amazing Fox! What a weapon! The wielder will own this realm mwahahahahaha!!
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 12-Apr-09, 02:55:15
Albadaran,
check your e-mail

-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 10-Apr-09, 17:21:20
[B]When the sword is equiped it starts draining the wielders life, slowly.[/B]

If you could script that part I would be grateful.

As for the rest: Let's keep it simple and add a 'fake' routine to the script instead of calculating it all. Something in OnHit like this?

object oTarget;
oTarget = GetLastDisturbed; //not sure lol!

effect eEffect;
eEffect = EffectDamage(5, DAMAGE_TYPE_MAGICAL, DAMAGE_POWER_NORMAL);

ApplyEffectToObject(DURATION_TYPE_INSTANT, eEffect, oTarget);

eEffect = EffectHeal(5);

ApplyEffectToObject(DURATION_TYPE_TEMPORARY, eEffect, OBJECT_SELF, 1.0f);

}

I'm not sure if I got this all right, but I guess you get the idea ;)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 10-Apr-09, 14:56:21
I realize I talk of OnHit: scripts and creatures AI like you know what to do already.
But maybe you do not?
If you need, I can send you a more detailed explanation by e-mail.

Let me know if you need it.
Or I assume you don't need it.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 10-Apr-09, 03:33:57
I'm afraid you will have to re-think a portion of your idea.
I try to break it in points.

You say:
[b]When the sword is equiped it starts draining the wielders life, slowly.[/b]

I say:
This can be done. Best way to handle it is to fire a Custom Event every X seconds.
You respond to that event, and do what you need. This Custom Event starts firing when the sword is equipped, and stops firing when the sword is unequipped (or better to say: no-longer equipped). Flat easy.


You say:
[b]When the wielder hits someone he gets lifepoints back, and the one who is hit looses an equal amount of lifepoints.[/b]

I say:
This is problematic. The reason is that your "point of insertion" in this affair is: _after_ the wielder has struck the target, and _after_ the base-weapon-damage has been dealt.
Immediately after that moment your "OnHit:" script is executed.
Your OnHit: script computes the damage you wish to inflict. Your script ends.
The damage is now inflicted.
If target is immune to your sword, it is too late to do anything about it, because you are already "outside" of the OnHit: script.

So you see you are not given the chance to learn about a lot of things.
So you need a second point of insertion: inside the AI of the target you attack.
When a creature suffers physical damage, a script is run to take counter-measure.
You can modify that script and place your own "hook"in it. You can make so that the AI of the target leaves a trail of messages for your OnHit: script to read.
This is done by using local variables.
They can be placed on anything, and be queried, removed, modified by anything.
The AI of your target may place a few local variables on the very target.
Then your OnHit: script would go read those local variables. And do stuff.
Think of local variables as "Post-It" you attach around to share informations with whoever is interested in them. Makes sense?


You say:
[b]If possible: When the wielder hits someone, he gets lifepoints back according to X% of the lifepoints the sword has drained from him after his last hit (meaning that the first blow will deal HUGE damage if the sword has drained the wielder for a very long time).[/b]

I say:
This can be done. So long your sword bases her "current" course of action on the outcome of her "last" action, anything is possible.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 08-Apr-09, 20:47:09
This is the idea:

When the sword is equiped it starts draining the wielders life, slowly.
When the wielder hits someone he gets lifepoints back, and the one who is hit looses an equal amount of lifepoints.
If possible: When the wielder hits someone, he gets lifepoints back according to X% of the lifepoints the sword has drained from him after his last hit (meaning that the first blow will deal HUGE damage if the sword has drained the wielder for a very long time).

I'm still not very good in the C language, although you will notice that I manage to copy and past and edt existing scripts rather well (when you take a look at the mod you are about to recieve). ;)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 08-Apr-09, 14:37:42
Oops.
I have read bad. You do not want Life Drain.
You want something like what Enserric the sword does.

But you want the life drain continual?
That is tricky to implement. But I believe it can be done.

Do you wish a complete tutorial?
OR, do you want only some directions to follow, and you walk on your own?

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 08-Apr-09, 14:33:24
I see.
? You talk of something similar to the "Life Drain" of ROM2 ?

If yes, you can design your custom OnHit script.
Attach it to the sword, and from there you can do many things.

Describe me what you wish to do, in detail (here or by e-mail).
I tell you what parts of it can be done or no.

-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 07-Apr-09, 19:17:06
Fox,
The life degeneration is for a cursed sword, slowly stealing the wielders lifepoints, and in return dealing huge blows, adding life points.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 07-Apr-09, 18:39:13
I forgot.

Here is a little trick to ensure true seeding of the random number generator.

[b]Assumption[/b]:
NWN pseudo-random number generator is not randomly seeded at all.
Instead it takes some hard-coded data off the Area you are in, then use it to seed the generator.
This means: given the same Area, and doing the same things in the same order, will always output the same sequence of random numbers. Which is not good.

[b]Fox fix[/b]:
Open the script you attached to the OnEnter event of each Area.
I hope you use 1 universal script for all the Areas you make :-)
If not, you should.

At the beginning of that script, past the code to make sure that the entering object is a PC, put the following:

[i][code][/i]
int nMsec = GetTimeMillisecond ();
int nOne = nMsec % 10;
int nTwo = nMsec % 100;

while (nOne--) { Random (nOne); }
while (nTwo--) { Random (nTwo); }
[i][/code][/i]

Its purpose is to force the NWN random generator to output a variable amount of numbers, based on current clock milliseconds, every time a PC enters the Area.
And so no two times you eneter the same Area and do the same things may output the same sequence of random numbers.

Other similar methods are good, of course.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 07-Apr-09, 18:03:30
-- Albadaran:
[b]Fox... Is it possible to reverse the health regeneration effect into a health degeneration effect?[/b]

Unless you can specify a negative number for an EffectRegenerate(), the only good solution is to make use of Custom Events.

You make the Module respond to a Custom Event every X seconds, and cause Y HP loss to the Z creature.
A health degeneration may kill a creature.
If you want to route the XP for the kill to a specific K creature, you must pack your health degeneration stuff in a separate script that is then executed for K, and _not_ for the Module.
See the documentation of ExecuteScript().

It can get messy. Plan it with care.
And Custom Events are handled server-side.
Their abuse -online- can lag-kill any server.



----------------------------------------
Change of subject:

I was here because I have rewritten: Acid Fog.

Original spell was a real mess.
Close in implementation to what the spell description said, but technically all wrong: with fortitude saves given before spell resistance checks, damage amounts rolled one time for all targets caught during the heartbeat script...
Really lame.

I have put order in the scripts (4 scripts for this AOE), fixed some bugs, and added my personal touch :-)

My new Acid Fog:
Spell duration is 1 Round per 2 caster levels.
Upon entering the cloud 4d6 acid damage is dealt.
A Fortitude save is allowed for half damage.
Failing the save also applies a permanent undispellable Movement Speed Decrease of 50%

For each round spent inside the AOE:
2d6 acid damage is dealt.
A Fortitude save is allowed for half damage.
Failing the save also applies a permanent undispellable Movement Speed Decrease of 50%

Notice the "permanent" word. The attempt to halve a target speed is done upon entering the AOE, and then once for every round spent in the AOE.
So if target avoids this penalty, he will have to avoid it again in the next round (by winning the fortitude save).
But if target is caught by this penalty, then the penalty stays for the duration of the spell, and does not go away, even if the target wins the fortitude save of the next round.

The original spell instead would try to penalyze you only upon entering the AOE.
If you "survived" that attempt, the spell would forget about trying to reduce your speed again. I believe this wrong, and so I fixed it.

Resisting the spell while inside the AOE, or exiting the AOE, immediately removes the Speed Decrease effect.

Spell Focus feats in Conjuration school will improve the damage as follow:
- Spell Focus: +1d6 acid damage (+1d6 total)
- Greater Spell Focus: +1d6 acid damage (+2d6 total)
- Epic Spell Focus: +2d6 acid damage (+4d6 total)

Creatures targeted by the spell see their equipped weaponry (exposed to the AOE) contaminated by the Fog and so gaining a temporary bonus damage of 1d4 acid.
Such weaponry includes: Monk Gloves, Arrows, Bolts, Bullets, any Melee or Throwable weapons. In both hands.
Throwable weapons affected are only: Darts, Shurikens and Throwing Axes.
Creature weapons are never affected.
Exiting the AOE, causes the contaminated weapons to lose this temporary bonus.

If a weapon already possesses some permanent Acid damage property, no extra damage is added by the spell.

Note that "targeted creatures" are the creatures damaged by the spell.
Unless the game difficulty is high enough, the caster of Acid Fog can not use this spell to enhance his own weapons, nor those of his allies.
Monsters instead will always be targeted, and so always enhanced.

The opposite is true too.
If a monster uses Acid Fog against you, your weapons are contaminated by it.
But the monsters's weapons (and those of his allies) are ignored.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Apr-09, 18:50:22
Fox... Is it possible to reverse the health regeneration effect into a health degeneration effect?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Apr-09, 16:02:24
Hello.
Two more spells changed:

- "Fireball"
- "Delayed Blast Fireball"


----------------------------------------
To Fireball I only added support for Spell Focus feats in Evocation.
Each will add another 1d6 Fire damage.


----------------------------------------
To Delayed Blast Fireball I did more.
Original spell is all a big bug.

Original description:
You create a small magical zone that can detect the passage of enemy creatures.
When one such creature steps in, the thing blasts all within the Area Of Effect, doing 1d6 Fire damage per caster level (max 20d6).
Spell has a duration (the maximum delay time) of 1 Round per 3 caster levels.

Now, what the spell description does not say...

1) Visual effect in game appear to cover a circular-shaped zone 5 meters wide (2.5 meters radius)
2) code in spellscript describes a zone 3 meters wide. Shape: unknown, but the code handles a circle that is 4 meters wide, because...
3) ... actual hard-coded data inside vfx_persistent.2da defines a circular-shaped zone that is 4 meters wide.
4) Description talks of a duration of 1 Round per 3 caster levels.
5) Spellscript calculates and uses a duration of 1 Round per 2 caster levels.
6) description says only enemies will trigger the zone, but everyone caught inside will then take damage.
7) spellscript instead tries to make the zone trigger for anyone (including the caster, if pvp setting is high enough), and then damage anyone caught in...
8) ... but a bug in spellscript makes so that the spell is unable to recognize the "anyone" and actually triggers AND damages only the enemies to the caster. Surely an un-intended error that happened to be nice for players. But it is wrong.
9) spellscript would handle the Maximize Spell metamagic. But spell is level 7, and no Maximize metamagic can apply.

So a mess!

I have changed things.
Now the magical zone is properly made 5 meters wide, like the visual clue you see in game suggests.
Now the spell will properly recognize enemies for the activation (detonation) of the magical zone, but then will inflict damage to anyone caught in the blast radius, including the caster (if game difficulty allows for it).
Spell duration is changed to 1 Round per 3 caster levels, like the spell description says.
Of course full metamagic applies, except Maximize.

Base damage is unchanged. 1d6 per caster level, Max 20d6.
Spell Focus feats in Evocation school will improve the damage as follow:
- Spell Focus: +1d6 Fire damage (+1d6 total)
- Greater Spell Focus: +2d6 Fire damage (+3d6 total)
- Epic Spell Focus: +2d6 Fire damage (+5d6 total)

Like in orginal spell, targets are given an Evasive Reflex Save for half or no damage.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 03-Apr-09, 16:57:11
I am good. Foxy too :-)

I modified the spell Burning Hands, to the core.
NWN implementation is close to that of D&D, except for the Area Of Effect radius, thickness and shape.

D&D says 10 feets radius (3 meters), in a semi-circular form, as thick as your thumbs.
NWN makes it a 10 meters radius (30 feet), in a cone form, as tall as a character, like a flame-thrower.

I have kept the radius and thickness of NWN, but have changed the shape of the AOE in a true semi-circle.

I had to modify the very effect model file that is played for Burning Hands (var_conefire.mdl). Acquiring all the tools was not easy. I had to turn over a rock or two (is that how you say it? :-)
I am a little sad that these tools do not allow me to make all the modifications I wanted.
But I believe the end result is very good all the same. You judge.

Screen one (4 quads): http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/BurnHand1.jpg
Screen two (4 quads): http://usera.ImageCave.com/Fox/BurnHand2.jpg

Other than re-shaping the AOE, I added support for spell focus feats in Trasmutation school.
Each will add +1d4 extra Fire damage.
For an easy Level 1 spell, a total base of 9d4 Fire damage is fair I believe.
Full metamagic applies, as before.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 01-Apr-09, 17:00:42
I have changed the amount of damage a Familiar inflict on its Master in case of death.
D&D says 1d6 Magical. But in NWN 1d6 soon becomes nothing to worry about, and Wizards/Sorcerers may Kamikaze their Familiars on Epic Traps they can't avoid or disarm.

So I increase the damage.
Now it is 1d3 Positive Energy for each Master level.

Thus even a level 40 spellcaster receives a sensible blow from the loss of his precious Familiar.
But never will the death of the Familiar kill its Master. They will always be left with at least 1 HP.

NOTE:
I had to change the damage type from Magical to Positive because I did modify "Energy Buffer", making it a protection against Magical damage alone.
And I modified Energy Buffer because Magical Energy damage is abused in NWN.

According to rules: Magical, Divine and Positive damage types should be the 3 unstoppable ones.
Never to be abused.
Magical and Divine damages may appear on weapons, but in very small quantities (1d2 - 1d6). They should always be unstoppable (no damage resistance versus them), unless it's a spell and a savingn throw is allowed for reduced or no damage.
Positive Energy is meant to be even more special. It is intended as "raw" energy type.
Never on a weapon. Never on a spell. Always unstoppable.
Only to be used when all other damage types seem out-of-place.

But NWN often ignored these rules.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 30-Mar-09, 18:59:12
Hello.

My own forge project is put on hold for as much as needed.
Call this a "knowledge challenge". I discovered that many built-in pieces of the game have the power to mess up all my work.
So before I commit more time in what could be a losing battle, I must learn what is all that can interfere, and then find solutions.


--------------------------------------------------
Change of subject:
I have downloaded a nice PDF of the Player's Hand-Book (or PHB) for D&D 3rd Edition rules, which is the version NWN is based on.
Great lecture. I learned much from it :-)

I comprehend that no amount of effort can make NWN any closer to D&D than it already is, especially if we talk about spells.
This game is simply unable to implement many of the peculiar D&D mechanics.

However some things can be implemented just like they are in D&D.
Like the "aging of characters", who lose points in their physical stats as they get older, but acquire points in their mental stats.
And eventually they must die, forever.
This addition would add much to persistent worlds, I believe.
A character becomes boring when you reach highest level and have no challenge left.
But if you know your character will gain and lose stats with aging, and eventually will lose his life, then a level 40 character stays interesting for all his life :-)


--------------------------------------------------
Change of subject:
I continue my work on the NWN spells.

In the past days I have modified many of them.



-- TimeStop:

Little changes for this one. Caster is able to stop the Time for 1d2 rounds (instead of the fixed 9 seconds).
You are not told for how much time the Time will be frozen, or it gets too easy to take advantage of it.
But you know that it's at least 6 seconds, and at most 12 seconds.
Being a level 9 spell, no metamagic can apply.

Taking spell focus feats in Divination school will upgrade the potential length of the stop, as follow:
- Spell Focus = 1d3 rounds (min 6 seconds, max 18 seconds)
- Greater Spell Focus = 1d4 rounds (min 6 seconds, max 24 seconds)
- Epic Spell Focus = 1d4+1 rounds (min 12 seconds, max 30 seconds)

Whoever stops the time causes a server-wide message to be sent to the console of each Player, like "player_name: defies the sands of Time"

So everyone anywhere knows who is stopping Time. It is not revealed the current location of the stopper, but if a stopper is annoying the other players by repeated use of TimeStop, then you can ask a DM to do something about it.



-- Wail of the Banshee:

Standard NWN spell is boring. In simple words: it is another "win Fortitude save, or be killed".
I decided to make it more interesting when I noticed that the description of the spell classifies it as "Death, Sonic".
The Death part is obvious... but the Sonic one?

So I totally rewriten the spell.
I'm not fully satisfied of it yet, but for now it's good.

Up to 1 target every 5 caster levels are affected in a radius of 25 feet.
Targets must win a Fortitude save or be instantly killed.
Those who succeed the Fortitude save (are still alive) are automatically Deafened for 1 Turn and suffer 1d4+1 points of Sonic damage per 2 caster levels.
These targets are now given a Will save. If they win it, they take half Sonic damage.
If they lose it, they suffer full Sonic damage... and are also Silenced for 1 Turn.

Constructs are totally unaffected.
Targets who are Deafened already are immune to the Sonic part of the spell.
Targets with Immunity to Death Magic are only Immune to the Death part of the spell.

Each Spell Focus feat in Necromancy school will improve the spell by allowing 2 more targets to be affected and increase the AOE radius by 3 feet.

This new Wail of the Banshee is especially dangerous for spellcasters.
Being Deafened means many things:
-- you can not perceive enemies by "hearing" them
-- you can not hear help-requests or orders shouted to you from allies
-- you receive a +20% Arcane Spell Failure

Being Silenced can be deadly to a spellcaster:
-- you can not cast ANY spell with a Verbal component (unless you have them prepared with the Silent Spell metamagic feat)

Because of the high threat level of this spell, I made so that a Deafened target may not hear it a second time (until the Deaf condition goes away). This makes such target basically Immune to the spell, because if they can hear the Sonic part of it, they survived the Instant Death part (by virtue of Immunity, or by good Save stats).



-- The 5 Bigby's hands...
Took me much time to decide what to do with these.
In D&D they are very different, because NWN can not mimic those mechanics.
Yet in NWN they are horrible spells. Either too stupid, or too powerful, or too bugged, or even redundant.

First of all, I fixed a glitch that affected 4 of the 5 hands:
If the hand appeared but the spell was dispelled, or the combat ended, the Hand visual would stay glued to the target until spell expiration or a Rest was taken.
This could mean: minutes of a huge green glowing thing taking the center of your screen.
Very annoying to the eyes.
The hands of my spells will remove themselves within 3 seconds from the moment they should have vanished (for any reason).


-- Bigby's Interposing Hand (level 5 spell)

Long range spell.
Duration is 1 round per 4 caster levels.
Metamagic applicable as usual.
Each round, target is given a special AC saving throw.
Winning the save negates the spell.
Otherwise target suffers a -5 penalty to all his attack rolls.
If target loses a Will saving throw, target is slowed to 50% movement speed for current round.
Speed decrease is _not_ like the "Slow" spell. It's only a walk/run speed decrease.
Spell Focus feats in Evocation school will improve the attack penalty by -5 each.



-- Bigby's Forceful Hand (level 6 spell)

Medium range spell.
Duration is instant.
Metamagic applicable as usual.
Target is given a special AC saving throw.
If save is lost, target is Knocked Down for 3 seconds (half a round).
If target loses a Reflex saving throw, target is Dazed for 1 round.

Spell Focus feats in Evocation school will each improve the spell by adding 3 more seconds to Knockdown and 1 round to the Daze duration.



-- Bigby's Grasping Hand (level 7 spell)

Medium range spell.
Duration is 1 round per 3 caster levels.
Metamagic applicable as usual.
Each round, target is given a special AC saving throw.
Winning the save negates the spell.
Otherwise target suffers 1d6+8 Bludgeoning damage.
At every round the target's position is checked. If target has (willingly) moved since last round, he must win a Reflex saving throw or be Paralyzed for 3 seconds (half a round).

Spell Focus feats in Evocation school will each add +1d6 Bludgeoning damage per round, and improve the attack bonus of the Hand as folow:
- Spell Focus = attack bonus from 0 to +1
- Greater Spell Focus = attack bonus +1 to +3
- Epic Spell Focus = attack bonus from +3 to +5

Note that a state of Paralysis may trigger a *coup the grace* and instantly kill the victim.
Not guaranteed to happen.
I am unable to reproduce it at will, so I have no clear idea of what causes it.

I suspect it has to do with the target becoming not aware of the attacker, while paralyzed.
In other words is like the target is caugh by surprise, like during sleep.
That is why I choose to Paralyze for only 3 seconds.
In majority of cases they aren't enough to make the target "lose" awareness of the threats.
But sometimes they are, in spite of my efforts to avoid it.



-- Bigby's Clenched Fist (level 8 spell)

Medium range spell.
Duration is 1 round per 2 caster levels.
Metamagic applicable as usual.
Each round, target is given a special AC saving throw.
Winning the save negates the spell.
Otherwise target suffers 1d8+10 Bludgeoning damage.
Target must win a Fortitude saving throw or be Stunned for 1 round (the current round).
Starting attack bonus of the Hand is +1.

Spell Focus feats in Evocation school will each add +1d8 Bludgeoning damage per round, and improve the attack bons of the Hand as follow:
- Spell Focus = attack bonus from +1 to +3
- Greater Spell Focus = attack bonus +3 to +5
- Epic Spell Focus = attack bonus from +5 to +10



-- Bigby's Crushing Hand (level 9 spell)

Short range spell.
Duration is 1 round per 2 caster levels.
Metamagic applicable as usual.
Each round, target is given a special AC saving throw.
Winning the save negates the spell.
Otherwise target suffers 1d10+12 Bludgeoning damage.
Starting attack bonus of the Hand is +1.
Target must win a Fortitude saving throw or suffer more ill effects as follow:
- movement speed decrease to 50%
- target loses 1/10th his current HP (min 1 damage, max 25 damage per round) in form of Positive Energy.

Spell Focus feats in Evocation school will each add +1d10 Bludgeoning damage per round, and improve the other effects of the Hand as follow:
- Spell Focus:
attack bonus from +1 to +3
speed decrease from 50% to 66%
current HP lost is 1/10th (to a maximum of 50 HP per round)

- Greater Spell Focus:
attack bonus from +3 to +5
speed decrease from 66% to 82%
current HP lost is 1/10th (to a maximum of 75 HP per round)

- Epic Spell Focus:
attack bonus from +5 to +10
speed decrease from 82% to 99% (taregt becomes almost immobile)
current HP lost is 1/10th (to a maximum of 100 HP per round)

Bigby's Crushing Hand may be cast on Placeables (Crates and such) and Doors as well.
A personal touch: Bigby's Crushing Hand will literally "squeeze" the life out of the target.
You will see blood spraying and bones shooting. Of course, placeables and doors will not bleed nor bone.


Now some due explanations about the "AC save" and other mechanics I put in my Bigby's spells.
The idea of the special AC saving throw is taken from the original NWN Bigby's spells.
But unlike the original spells, I _do_ output you the complete process of the AC save you are performing, so that you can not feel cheated by some mysteryous force you have no feedback from.
In your console you would see something like this:

Warrior Mummy: AC Save vs. Crushing Hand : *failure* (3 + 15 = 18 VS DC: 67)

Properly colored like all saving throws, so it doesn't escape your eyes.
Like in the original spells, I base the total DC of these AC saves on several values taken from the caster.

Actual formula for CasterDC and TargetRoll are:
- CasterDC = CasterLevel + CasterRelevantAbilityModifier + DCadjuster + 1d20
- TargetRoll = TargetTotalAC + 1d20

The "CasterRelevantAbilityModifier" changes according to the Caster type.
If I'm not confusing things now, the Bigby's spells are only for Wizards and Sorcerers.
Wizards's relevant ability modifier is their Intelligence Modifier (the "17" in the "Int 44|17")
Sorcerers's relevant ability modifier is their Charisma Modifier (the "9" in the "Cha 28|9").

"CasterLevel" is just that: the level of the casting class used.
(in all my spells it's always capped at 40, to prevent insane monsters from getting insane boons)

"DCadjuster" is a fixed value I use in these spells to augment or diminish the total value.
It is:
-8 for the Interposing Hand
-4 for the Forceful Hand
+0 for the Grasping Hand
+4 for the Clenched Fist
+8 for the Crushing Hand

The DCadjuster may cause a CasterDC to drop below 1, if caster is low level enough.
If that happens, a minimum DC of 1 is assumed, and a 1d20 roll is added to it, like usual.

Beware, a high level spellcaster can easily reach almost irresistible DCs (like 85).
Only the best armored characters of comparable level may win such AC saving throws and negate the spells.
Which is unfair...

So I properly account for the "lucky 20 roll" case, granting a 5% chance to escape the spell.
But I choose to not account for the "unlucky 1 roll" case. Neanderthal thing, I believe.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 07-Feb-09, 13:59:16
Pause. I was ill.
Old fox I am.

-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 07-Feb-09, 01:21:10
[i]-- Albadaran:
I will not distribute this forge any time soon.
Much thought and testing is required to make it flawless.
[/i]

Fox, its more than a month later, and there is no mod running anymore where the Forge is tested. What is the status of the project?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 09-Jan-09, 18:25:00
Hello.

I choose to drop support for forged ammunitions.
To say it simple: there is not enough functionality from the game-core to make serious stuff with ammos.

With lot and lot of scripting I can add the missing features (done already), but the trade-off is a very heavy cost on CPU.
Done in single player is okay: 1 player to check and no data to send on the net.
But in multi player it lag-kill a server.

So now the forge-able items are any equippable that is not Arrow, Bolt, Bullet, Torch or Throwable.
Said in other way, forge-able items are:
-- melee weapons (including Whips)
-- ranged weapons (including Slings)
-- gloves (Monk gloves are special melee weapons)
-- shields
-- helmets
-- body armors (from robes to heavy armors)
-- belts
-- cloaks
-- bracers
-- boots
-- rings
-- amulets


I change another rule:
[i][b]19)[/b] each item property is associated a "power" value. Each item can hold only so much "power" and not more. Players have to take care and not over-power a single item, or they are prevented from putting/upgrading more properties on it.
Players can adjust the overall "power" of an item by introducing penalizing properties like AC reduction, skill decrease, damage vulnerabilities. Doing so may allow for further power-up of said item.[/i]

New rule:
[b]19)[/b] each item property is associated a "power" value. Each item can hold only so much "power" and not more. Players have to take care and not over-power a single item, or they are prevented from putting/upgrading more properties on it.


Here too the reason is because there is not enough support from the game-core.
Other rules stay the same.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 04-Jan-09, 14:46:59
Hello.

Work-around for the 25 pages limit.
My brain is puffing smoke...

Number of forged items existing at the same time, for each player, is max. 50

This does not include ammunitions (arrows, bolts, bullets).
Forged ammunitions are recovered if possible. Otherwise they are lost.
Ammunitions are quick and low-cost to remake, and can be forged in packs (size of pack depends on XP of character).

For each player on-line that is linked to the forge, a new chest of lost items appear at the forge.
So minimum is 0 chests. Maximum is 64 chests.
Plenty of room for that. The server will not suffer.

Chests all look the same. But your chest will be illuminated by a colored aura, so you know what to open to find your stuff.
This can work because only 1 player is allowed inside the forge at any time.

When a forged item is dropped, it is always recovered and saved.
If that item belongs to a player on-line, the item is stuffed in the appropriate chest.
Otherwise disappears and stay unavailable.
When the true proprietor of that item will log-in to play, his chest will appear at the forge.
Any player can open any chest and take any thing in them.

I introduce an optional switch to make so that if a player dies (and respawns), all his forged items are dropped by force and recovered at the chest.
By default the switch will be OFF.

The many-chests idea will be nice on memory.
It makes inventory management for each chest very fast!
And avoids the problem of over-sized inventories, because it splits the load on multiple chests, therefore on multiple tiny inventories.

I stay un-beaten :-)

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 04-Jan-09, 00:56:53
Update on forge project:

I hit a ugly limit.

I wanted to implement item recovery, and place the collected items back in a common chest a the forge.
Recovery is not the problem. That is 100% working and flawless.
Problem is the container (the chest).
It has a limit of 25 pages of inventory, each made by a grid of 7x5 slots.

This limit can not be by-passed.
So a container can stuff at most 75 armors.
Or 125 Longswords.
Or 875 Bullets.
Or 350 stacks of Arrows...

Put 1 more, there is no space, and the operation is not done.
You receive a message "This container is full".

More. When a container expand its inventory to those many pages, the performance of the server is ruined.
It drops and stay dropped, even if you empty the container.
And the 25 pages do not shrink back to 1.
Must destroy and remake the container for that.

So my idea of item recovery is defeated :-(

To make sure forged items can not be lost I would have to make them "undroppable".
It is a violence on players. Nobody like that.

Item recovery was pivotal to much of the code needed to implement this forge.
Without this feature, it has no sense talking of items that can be used only by their original owner.
It has no sense to create a link between players and forge.
It has no sense to use a database to store informations.

What remain are a group of blacksmiths who can upgrade items.
A forge like many others.
It has no sense I write mine :-(

I will think about alternative paths. But the horizon is black.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 31-Dec-08, 00:45:33
-- Albadaran:
I will not distribute this forge any time soon.
Much thought and testing is required to make it flawless.

The forge uses a database to hold critical informations about players.
Little data need to be stored, but it must be precise and guaranteed to be consistent.

I am writing Armored Code, but at least 1 bad situation can not be trapped by scripting.
Only the server administrator can detect and fix that.
So he need tools to interact with the database, meaning I must build and test those too.

And I am discovering little and annoying unjustified behaviors that show up in server mode but not in single player.
I begin to think BAD BAD things about BW programmers...

-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-Dec-08, 12:02:49
Fox,
How are you distributing the changes you made? I mean, suppose someone likes the forgue, but does not want the creature changes, and keep his own changes, than he would not want to overwrite his old Rhun mod. Only small parts of it. How?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-Dec-08, 02:17:52
Hello.
I am working on my forge. I have encountered some difficulties that made me think of different solutions to do "stuff" (I learn how convenient this magic word is :-)
The new methods I follow are more robust.
And allow for a change to one rule.

-- I quote myself:
[i][b]9)[/b] the blacksmiths only work on items that they have created themselves (they run a store you can buy "virgin" items at). It is not possible to have the blacksmiths work on items born outside the forge.[/i]

-- New rule is:
[b]9[/b] the blacksmiths can only work on items a player brings to them. The item will be permanently stripped of all its properties (if any) and become forge-able. The process is un-doable. The blacksmiths will refuse to work on "plot" items, if any is brought to them.

Other rules are un-changed.

I close with a question:
Do you prefer to enter the forge by using an item to activate?
Or you prefer to access the forge using an option inside the Craft Skills menu?

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 26-Dec-08, 15:32:00
I have modified the Craft Skills menu.
Crafting of traps is completely re-done. Easy to read. More performant.
Now you can craft all the 11 common trap types, from Minor to Deadly:
-- Spike
-- Holy
-- Tangle
-- Blob of Acid
-- Fire
-- Electrical
-- Gas
-- Acid Splash
-- Frost
-- Sonic
-- Negative

I have removed the line(s) to read the craft trap book of details.
Now you learn the component name for a trap type when you go craft it.
I did not feel to add support for Epic traps.
But I designed my code to be easy to modify, if one so wish.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 24-Dec-08, 15:14:36
-- bbKing
It helps :-) I thank you.
So patch 1.69 adds 3 new helmet styles.
But no new cloak styles.


----------------------------------------
My expanded Craft Skills menu is part of a bigger project.
It can work stand-alone.
Or it can complement the second portion of this modification, which is a forge.

This is not like the forge of the gods. That one is for DMs.
My forge is for players.

I design this forge so it can be plugged in any module, with little work (I hope) from the modder.

How it works?
Players receive a special item they can use to be transported to the forge.
The forge area is No PVP. Resting is forbidden.
In this area the player finds several blacksmiths, each specializing in the forging of 1 type of item.
At this forge you can enhance every item type you have a equip-slot for.

Like all forges, it can unbalance the gameplay greatly.
So I thought of iron rules to govern it. They are to prevent all exploits.

[b]The rules:[/b]
[b]1)[/b] access to the forge is denied if any hostile is around the player, or if another player is already at the forge.

[b]2)[/b] there is a time limit of N game-hours any player can stay in the forge. Past that limit, the player is kicked out by force. If this translates to a damage for him (he loses items or other stuff), it is his problem alone.

[b]3)[/b] the special item to enter the forge can be used only once per day. Then a player must rests if he wants to use it again. This works with rules [b](1)[/b] and [b](2)[/b] so that no player can abuse the forge and prevent other players to enter it for indefinite time.

[b]4)[/b] no teleporting is allowed from inside the forge.

[b]5)[/b] the forging is not instantaneous. Players pay in advance, leave the item to the blacksmith, and return after some time to get it back. If they forget to return (within a time limit), the item is lost.

[b]6)[/b] each blacksmith can serve only 1 player at a time. If a player enters the forge and all blacksmiths are busy working for other players, this player have to return at a future time in hope of better luck. This works with rule [b](5)[/b] to prevent a player from busy-ing all blacksmiths for himself, and so prevent other players from using the forge.

[b]7)[/b] the blacksmiths at this forge accept payment in gems only (I may change this).

[b]8)[/b] all items left on ground, after a player leaves the forge, are instantly destroyed. "Plot" items left on ground are automatically transported back with the player, and left on ground there. If the player forgets to recover them, it is his problem (he should not have dropped them in the first place).

[b]9)[/b] the blacksmiths only work on items that they have created themselves (they run a store you can buy "virgin" items at). It is not possible to have the blacksmiths work on items born outside the forge.

[b]10)[/b] when a player first uses the forge, a strong, unique and permanent link is created between him and the forge. The link also identifies him as the sole proprietor of the items that are forged for him.

[b]11)[/b] the blacksmiths enchant your forged items so that only you can use them. In this way a player can not forge items for a friend. But a player may carry an item that was enchanted for another player (carrying is not equipping). The blacksmiths always know who the true proprietor of an item is, and they refuse to work on an item if it is not in possession of the true proprietor.

[b]12)[/b] forged items forgot on ground are never destroyed. They are recovered and transported back to a common chest in the forge. Any player can access this chest and take anything in it.

[b]13)[/b] forged items can not be sold. But they can be permanently destroyed by anyone who throws them in a special trashbin located at the forge.

[b]14)[/b] a player is free in any moment to give up on the services of the forge. Doing so results in immediate and undoable destruction of all the items that were crafted for him, whoever possess them. Stealing a forged item and logging off will not save that item. All forged items know who their properietor is, and know if their proprietor gave up on them. The items will self-destruct at the first chance.

[b]15)[/b] the blacksmiths can place specific item properties on specific item types. True Seeing is helmets-only. Haste can be put on boots and armor. Et cetera.

[b]16)[/b] there is a limit of N properties for each item type.

[b]17)[/b] each item property (and degree of quality, where applies) require the player to have a specific XP amount. Otherwise the player does not get to select the property (or further upgrade for a given property).

[b]18)[/b] properties with varying quality have to be applied step-by-step. If a player desires an AC bonus of 10, he has to make 10 separate AC upgrades to the same item.

[b]19)[/b] each item property is associated a "power" value. Each item can hold only so much "power" and not more. Players have to take care and not over-power a single item, or they are prevented from putting/upgrading more properties on it.
Players can adjust the overall "power" of an item by introducing penalizing properties like AC reduction, skill decrease, damage vulnerabilities. Doing so may allow for further power-up of said item.

[b]20)[/b] properties can be downgraded or removed as well. The operation is not for free, and it takes time like all forging requests.

[b]21)[/b] items can be renamed too. These blacksmiths are good at their work :-)



I think these are all the basic rules I need to make this forge impossible to exploit.
If any one finds a hole in my rules, point it out to me and explain why it is a hole.


-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 24-Dec-08, 13:48:37
hi fox

I just noticed your request.

1. 32 entries
2. 16 rows

Hope this helps :)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Dec-08, 19:12:05
It is done.
My Craft Skills menu has now support for Helmet crafting, Cloak crafting and Weapon coloring.

I have fixed several tiny bugs in the process. Too many to list.
But some flaws remain.
These are rooted inside the game core, and no scripting can fix them for sure.
So I leave the thing as-is, without attempting smart fixes that may not be so smart.


Some things to be aware of:

-- Cloak crafting
Some cloaks do cover one or both shoulders of your armor.
During the crafting, the game forgets to update the visual of the shoulders.
This is a temporary glitch.
Finish the crafting, then un-equip and re-equip your cloak.
The shoulders get fixed properly.

Some cloaks are displayed a good foot above your head.
During the crafting, the game fails to position the cloak properly on the body model of your character.
This is a temporary glitch.
When this happens, click anywhere on the ground.
Your character will change pose (without walking away), and the cloak will be re-positioned correctly.
You may have noticed this glitch happens when adding robes to your armor as well.


-- Weapon crafting
The amount of visual styles per part per weapon can vary greatly.
They range from 1 to 8.
Most often they are 4. Other times they are 3. Or 5. Or 6.
In some cases the internal ordinal number of the visual style is not sequential, and it happens that after style #4 you get to see style #7, and there are no styles #5 and #6 to show.
This is a real mess, and no 2DA file is there to query to learn which and how many visual styles are available for each weapon (a shame!)
Either I make one such 2DA, or I hard-code this information inside the scripts.
None of the 2 solutions are recommended, for many reasons.
The crafting works anyway, and you get to see all visual styles available.
Some weapons have only 1 possible style for their appearance. No point attempting to craft them.
These are: Kukri, Kama, Sickle, Whip and Sling.
The crafting menu will forbid you to alter the styles of such weapons.

-- Weapon coloring
All weapons, regardless of number of parts, styles, and type, possess 4 different colors per part.
Exception to this rule are: Whip and Sling (only 1 color available for them).
The crafting menu will forbid you to alter the colors of such weapons.


Throwables and ammunitions are not considered craft-able weapons.
The Torch is not a weapon.
Everything else that looks like a weapon: is craft-able.
HOTU forbids you to alter a weapon when this is Intelligent (like "Enserric the Sword").
In fact the crafting process can not preserve the scripting required to make the weapon "Intelligent".
I accept this rule. No Intelligent weapon can be altered in any way.

Regardless of what you craft, if it is a "plot" item (those you can not sell at a store), no crafting is allowed.

Helmet, Armor and Cloak coloring is not supported by the craft skills menu.
There are 175 different colors you can pick for each of the 6 materials of these items, per 3 item types.
I can tell the "Color Dye" items are one of the smartest things HOTU gave us :-)


----------------------------------------
The request I made in my previous post still stand.
I need one of you (any one of you) to do that for me, because I can not.
Until I know those 2 numbers, I can not make this modification ready for patch 1.68


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 23-Dec-08, 02:31:55
Haha.
Yes, this modification can work in Rhun.
But to make it compatible with patch 1.68, I need to know 2 things.
Would you help me?


----------------------------------------
The 1st thing. This is 3-minutes work.

[b]1)[/b] open the Aurora Toolset.
[b]2)[/b] open any module you possess (but not Rhun, or it take forever)
[b]3)[/b] In the up-left corner of screen, in the white panel, you see the "[+]Areas" text.
[b]4)[/b] Click the [+] and right-click on any area you see listed. In the menu, choose "View Area".
[b]5)[/b] Now move the mouse to the far right of screen, where there is the other white panel.
Directly above this panel, you see a number of icons lined up.
[b]6)[/b] Click the single-sword icon, for the "Items".
[b]7)[/b] Now in the white panel below, click on "[+]Armors", then click on "[+]Helmets".
[b]8)[/b] Right-click any of the helmets you see listed. Select the voice "Edit Copy".
[b]9)[/b] In the new window, click the Tab labeled "Appearance".
You will see a lone combo-box labeled "Appearance" in the center of the window.

[b]10)[/b] I need you to open that combo-box, and tell me how many entries you count in it.

They could be 31, or maybe 33, named from "helm_001" to "helm_033".
But do not trust the names (not guaranteed to be sequential).
I care to know how many entries are in that combo-box.

When you have done, click "Cancel" to close the window, and close the aurora toolset without saving anything.

----------------------------------------
Then I need the 2nd thing.
Again a number, this is 1-minute work.

Browse your hard-disk contents.
Enter in your [b]Neverwinter Nights[/b] folder.
Enter in your [b]NWN[/b] folder.
In this folder you see a .zip archive named: [b]2dasource.zip[/b]
Open it.
Inside there are many .2da files.
All are simple text (Notepad can read them).
Open the [b]cloakmodel.2da[/b] file.

Content is like a table, with rows and columns.
Notice the heading: LABEL.
In its column are numerous names, like "plain", "arcane", et cetera.
But the first row should have [b]****[/b] instead of a name.
What I need is the amount of rows that do _not_ have the **** thing.

This count could be 16. But I am not 100% sure. And I need to be sure.



Please do this for me, and I can make my Crafting Skills modification compatible with patch 1.68
Then you guys can use it in Rhun :-)

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Dec-08, 04:26:24
good night to you too fox
i'm impressed with all the effort and time you put in the scripting stuff.
i hope it can be used in the Rhun module we're playing.
that would be cool.
 
Author: Jultknight|TheBlind (Facebook Search for :: Julien David Mondoux Lepage)
Date: 22-Dec-08, 03:29:35
Nova, thank you for giving me access to your server, I hope that we will do this as much fun as rage of mages 2 even though I still plays a rom2.I'm starting a character, I I had some problems with bears at first I am going to have recreated one other characters I am lodged in a house with the bear that killed me every time I relive
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 22-Dec-08, 03:22:43
Hello.

I have experimented with the Crafting Skills menu.

I added the feature to modify the weapon colors.
Gold cost and DC of color modifications are like those for altering the weapon shape.

I plan to add support for changing the shape of helmets and cloaks.

But not today.
Took me hours to track the sequence and meaning of all the script functions called during the crafting thing.
I am very sleepy.

goodnight all

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Dec-08, 14:30:41
very good idea fox
even if there's an occasional server restart
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Dec-08, 13:24:15
On Nova's server it happens frequently that I find my chr back at the starting point of Rhun, with all map info lost. I assume this is caused by a server restart. So your idea would not work out I'm afraid...
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Dec-08, 02:54:54
NOVA,
I have an idea.

I find myself placing many pins on my maps as I explore.

It is ugly to have to make back and forth from one area to the other only to remember the area names and writing them in the map pins.

So I have added to my scripts for Area events (OnEnter and OnExit) two console messages for the entering or exiting PC.

In the OnExit script I output the message:
"[Server] You have left (Area Name)."

In the OnEnter script I output the message:
"[Server] You are now in (Area Name)."

This makes pinning more pleasant, because your console always remind you where you were and where you are :-)


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Dec-08, 20:11:04
Hello.
Yes, the "8" in "Strength 27|8" is your Strength Ability Modifier.
It should be 8.5, but only the integer part of it is considered.
And your weapon is fine.

I have made some test chars to try different Champion of Torm (CoT) builds.

I believe the problem is the CoT itself.
Its abilities can do very much, but for a very short time.
In Rhun the battles are too long.
Monsters are too healthy and too many.
Add that you have little chances to rest when you need...

You may take 29 levels in CoT.
And you may take Great Smiting feats.
And have lot of Charisma to support your CoT abilities.
You may even take Great Charisma feats... but your CoT remains limited by Time.

If Rhun was a more balanced module I would say "have fun with the CoT".
But this is not the case.
Instead I say: try the "Weapon Master" Prestige Class.
That one dedicates to a single weapon, and becomes terrible with it.
I believe it is better suited to Rhun style.

But remember that all Prestige Classes have a down side:
you gain something, you lose something.

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Dec-08, 01:29:12
oh i forgot to confirm that ofcourse i have all the feats you mentioned.
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Dec-08, 01:25:39
hi fox,
i have 8 Fighter and 6 Paladin levels, the rest is Champion of Torm, now level 38
and i have the best weapons money can buy, among which the epic longsword of Rhun.
in the example you give is the "6" the number in 2nd colum? in my char info it says: Strength |27|8
is the "8" the strength modifier?
My critical damage is: 15-20/x2
I had hoped that the Paladin levels and Champion of Torm made some difference, but the Divine Shield is short-lived, the Divine Wrath i can use only once a day and the Divine Might is not (yet) usable at all.
then i have Turn Undead 23 times a day and Smite Evil 3 times.
i took mostly Charisma abilities instead of Strength.
i know its too late to change anything at this final stage of the build up, but she isn't as strong as i hoped she would be.
An experiment gone to waste i'm afraid.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Dec-08, 18:20:42
Hello bbKing.
I am not sure to understand what is the "20" you say.
But you mention Power Attack, so I imagine it is the damage.

A damage of 20 per hit is not so bad.
But you are level 36...
Maybe you only need a better weapon?

How much total Strength you have?
Your Strength Modifier (the "6" in "Strength 22/6") is your big friend.
That number adds to all your attacks, with any weapon.
It also adds to the damage done per hit, with any weapon.
So the stronger, the better.
Formula for the Ability Modifier is always: [b](Ability - 10) / 2[/b]

Feats too can improve the attack and damage of a specific weapon type you like.
You got Fighter levels. Did you pick these four feats?
-- Weapon Focus (weapon type)
-- Weapon Specialization (weapon type)
-- Epic Weapon Focus (weapon type)
-- Epic Weapon Specialization (weapon type)



----------------------------------------
----------------------------------------
----------------------------------------
I have fixed some loopholes in the Heal, Harm and Mass Heal spells I did not see before.
("loopholes": I use a word I do not know the meaning. Haha)

Now the targeting rules applied are exactly as follow:

-- Heal and Mass Heal
If target is Construct, it is ignored.
If target is non-Hostile non-Undead, it is healed to full health.
If target is non-Friendly Undead, it is harmed by some HP% (from 50% to 75%)

-- For Mass Heal only
If no non-Construct target is found in area of effect, spell is wasted.


-- Harm
If target is Construct, it is ignored.
If target is non-Hostile Undead, it is healed to full health.
If target is non-Friendly non-Undead, it is harmed by some HP% (from 50% to 75%)



Fixed some bugs in original "Harm" and "Mass Heal" spells.
They have to do with the small delay given to the HP-affecting commands.

"Harm" would apply the visual effect instantly, then wait 1 second and apply the actual damage to the target.
But the damage to apply is calculated before the 1 second pause, meaning that if during the small pause the target suffers some damage, it may be killed by the Harm spell.
Fixed.

"Mass Heal", same exact problem of Harm.
Fixed.
Plus, the healing effect too is calculated instantly but then applied after some delay, meaning that the target has a chance to not be fully healed by the spell in case his maximum HP is changed (augmented) during the delay.
Fixed.


Now these spells are flawless :-)

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Dec-08, 05:39:10
hi fox
you know i'm not at all good in the mathematical part of the game
i'm just a player, or end user
still it puzzles me what the sub classes do
i've made a fighter char (a very good looking female char i must say lol) with some paladin but its attack (or damage) is still weak (without power attack its only 20 at the most)
i'm now level 36 and the prospect is bleak
where did i go wrong?
i know its a stupid question but still i ask :)
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Dec-08, 02:35:58
Hello.
I have changed: "Harm" and "Heal" spells (and "Mass Heal" too).

Original spells are the two faces of the same medal:
Heal is for healing non-undeads, or for harming undeads.
Harm is for healing undeads, or for harming non-undeads.

When used for healing, the HP are 100% restored.
When used for harming, the HP are reduced to 1d4 points.

That 1d4 is ridicolous.
Good in Pen and Paper games, maybe, but in NWN is a plain cheat.


----------------------------------------
So I change things:

Now, when used for harming, these spells will take away from 50% to 75% of current HP of targeted creature.
The Touch Attack is still needed.
Metamagic applies like before: Quicken, Still or Silent.

Heal is from Conjuration spell school.
Harm is from Necromancy spell school.

Each spell focus feat in the proper school will improve the HP% taken away (in harming mode), as follow:
- Spell Focus: +10% min, +5% max
- Greater Spell Focus: +10% min, +5% max
- Epic Spell Focus: +10% min, +5% max

Regardless of spell focus feats taken, 2 of these spells used in sequence can still reduce a target to very "Near Death" status.
But they can never kill him.

The spell "Mass Heal" is the same exact as "Heal", only used on a group of creatures.
So I make it follow the same rules of Heal.


----------------------------------------
Note:
The original spell scripts (Harm, Heal, Mass Heal) would affect Golems too (the "Constructs").
I do not know if this is a bug, or if it is correct D&D behavior.

What I know is that Constructs are much much similar to Undeads, but they are not Undeads.
The main difference is that Undeads were once alive, and were born.
Constructs were never alive, and were made (this includes the Flesh Golems too)

So I believe that Heal, Mass Heal and Harm spells should not affect Constructs.
But maybe the D&D rule says otherwise? I do not know.
If anyone knows, I am all an ear.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 14-Dec-08, 23:47:01
Hello.
I have changed the Power Words.
NOVA is right. They should do more.


----------------------------------------
-- Power Word, Kill:

Base HP slain starts at 9 per caster level.
Every spell focus feat in Divination school, adds +2 HP slain per caster level.

Targets are picked if their current HP make them potential victims.
Those targets are given a Spell Resistance check. If they win, they are spared completely.

Otherwise they take trouble.
They are examined to see if they possess Immunity to Death Magic.
For single target mode: If they do not, they die.
For AOE mode: If they do not, and their HP is no greater than the HP slain, they die.

Otherwise, target(s) take 1d3 Positive damage for every 2 target levels (not caster levels).

When used in AOE mode, HP slain are reduced by 9% for every target.
This 9% is absolute. Example: with 4 targets, the HP slain is reduced by 36%
There is a minimum limit the HP slain will not drop below, which is 30%


----------------------------------------
-- Power Word, Stun:

I tweaked the duration. Base duration is now 2d2 Rounds (not 1d4).
For every 50 HP the caster has more than the target, an additional 1d2 Round duration is gained (not 1d4).

It is still possible to Stun a target for many rounds, or some minutes.
So I put a sanity limit on maximum number of extra rounds: +10d2.
This is a helpf or PCs, who may be stunned by very healthy bossess for incredible durations.
Extend metamagic can apply no more.
The rule says that Extend is for durations that are not "instant", "permanent" or "rolled".

If target creature is already stunned, casting again the spell will not work.
Try anyway and you receive a floating message above your head.
You must wait that the current Stun expires or is dispelled.
This is another help for PCs, so a band of AI mages can not keep you stunned with fresh new durations every time.

Unlike "Power Word, Kill", there is no secondary effect applied to the creature who is immune to this spell.
I do something else to add more value to this Power Word.
If target is a NPC: the Stun is non-dispellable.
If target is a PC: the Stun is dispellable.

Default behavior of dispellers is: they find something they can remove, and they remove it.
Good or Bad effects, no distinction is made.

So:
If you (PC or NPC) do stun a foe (NPC), stunned he is, and stunned he remains.
You may bombard him with dispellers and force him to drop all his wards.
He remains stunned until spell expiration.

But if a foe (PC or NPC) targets you (PC), stunned you are, but cured you can be.
If your foe hurls a dispeller to you (and he will), you are likely stripped of your wards.
But the Stun goes away too.

This is the final help for PCs.


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 12-Dec-08, 23:51:45
I personally do not view your modifications to the POWER WORD spells as overpowered at all.

First, as you point out, a mage that specializes in spell enhancing feats and skills has chosen to specialize in something just like any other character (whether PC or NPC) specializes in their chosen skills/feats. Specializing in something SHOULD make you potent when using that special skill/feat.

Second, though the mage may be able to stun or kill enemies quite potently when using these spells, this ability is not unlimited in usage. Unlike a sword or a bow that can be used over and over and never runs out, the mage cannot endlessly cast POWER WORD spells. Instead, mages are more like a case of dynamite...very very potent and deadly packed into a single or a few attacks. The huge potentcy of their attack ability is offset by the fact that they must wait and rest before they can cast again. During this waiting period, they are not potent at all. Instead, they are very very weak and vulnerable. That is the fair and very logical trade-off that spell casters make when choosing a spell casting profession instead of the other character classes.

I agree with your modifications to these spells. In fact, I might even go further to say that since foes can have immunity to DEATH MAGIC and MIND AFFECTING and thus be totally immune to the POWER WORD spells, perhaps these spells are still not powerful enough even after your modifications. You might for instance want to check for the target's immunity and if the target is immune, instead of the spell doing nothing, apply some alternate effect (such as small amount of Hit Point damage). At least that way the POWER WORD spells are not so easy to ignore and they retain some potentcy no matter who the target is. They are not called POWER WORD without a good reason. They SHOULD be powerful if they are to live up to their names.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 12-Dec-08, 19:49:22
--NOVA:

The "Wing Buffet" script I gave you has 1 big bug in it.
Maybe you spot it already. Maybe not.

Search for the comment: "// Get next Target available."
The instruction there reads: GetFirstObjectInShape (...)
Instead it has to read: GetNextObjectInShape (...)
The rest of that instruction is correct in any case.

Sorry for the inconvenient.
Too much scripting in a day can do that.






Hello.
I have rewritten the spells: "Power Word, Stun" and "Power Word, Kill".

--Power Word, Kill (level 9)
Original spell:
This spell may be cast on a single creature or as an area effect.
A targeted creature of up to 100 Hit Points is killed instantly.
As an area effect, this spell will kill all creatures with fewer than 20 Hit Points, to a maximum total of 200 Hit Points.

I add the missing details:
Creatures with lower HP are slain first.
Radius size of AoE (Area of Effect) mode is 15 feet. 10 or so creatures can hardly stay in this restricted space.
No save allowed.
Spell Resistance check is made.
This is Death Magic. Creatures with immunity to it are unaffected.


So... you use a level 9 spell to kill a creature with max 100 current HP.
And if creature is Immune to Death Magic, you waste the spell.
OR, you use a level 9 spell to kill a mass (if a mass can stay in 15 feet) of little insignificant things with less than 20 HP, or they are unaffected anyway.

You know? Two Empowered Fireballs would do a much better job.


----------------------------------------
I do things differently:
Power Word, Kill is now something to fear!

Caster is able to slay a single creature whose current HP are no greater than 10 per caster level.

If used as area of effect spell, the HP slain loses a 10%, repetitively, for each affected creature.

Example:
Imagine caster level is 40. So the HP slain amounts to: 10 * 40 = 400 HP Slain.
Imagine 4 targets are caught inside the Area Of Effect.
Each target in the AOE makes the HP_Slain lose a 10% of power.
(this 10% is not absolute, of course. Or 10 creatures would negate the spell).
HP_Slain = HP_Slain * (0.9 to the power of 4)
HP_Slain = 400 * (0.9 ^ 4)
HP_Slain = 400 * 0.9 * 0.9 * 0.9 * 0.9
HP_Slain = 262

Those of the 4 creatures who have current HP no greater than 262, die.
So the more the creatures caught in the AOE, the less effective the spell.

Like original:
No save allowed.
Spell Resistance check is made.
Death Magic: creatures with immunity to it are unaffected.

Unlike original:
Spell focus feats in Divination school will upgrade the HP slain per caster level as follow:
- Spell Focus (Divination): +1 HP slain (+1 total)
- Greater Spell Focus (Divination): +2 HP slain (+3 total)
- Epic Spell Focus (Divination): +2 HP slain (+5 total)


----------------------------------------
Bug fixes: many.
I report a few:
Spell description says that "Death Ward" is counter-spell.
2DA says there is no additional counter-spell.
I have made Death Ward an additional counter-spell.

Spell is level 9.
Maximize metamagic can not apply. 2DA said otherwise.
Spell is Verbal only, NOT Somatic.
Silent metamagic can apply. Still metamagic can not. 2DA said otherwise.

2DA classified this as "area of effect indiscriminant" (no distinction between friend or foe targets).
These classifications are queried by the AI to decide what to cast, when, to who.
Anyway: not true. Only hostiles to caster are ever targeted.
So now it is corrected to "area of effect discriminant".




----------------------------------------
----------------------------------------
----------------------------------------

--Power Word, Stun (level 7)
Original spell:
Automatically stuns a single target for a duration based on the target's Hit Points:
Under 50 Hit Points: 4d4 rounds
51-100 Hit Points: 2d4 rounds
101-150 Hit Points: 1d4 rounds

I add the missing details:
Creatures with HP higher than 150 are unaffected.
No save allowed.
Spell Resistance check is made.
This is Mind-Affecting Magic. Creatures with immunity to it are unaffected.
Precisely, this is "Stun" magic. But the spell will not check if target is immune to Stun, and will stun him anyway. Bug :-)


----------------------------------------
I changed things:

The caster is able to stun a creature whose current HP are no greater than 7 HP per caster level.
Stun duration is 1d4 Rounds.
For every 50 HP the caster has more than the target, an extra 1d4 Rounds duration is gained.
No save allowed.
Spell Resistance check is made.
Mind-Affecting Magic: creatures with immunity to it are unaffected.
It is also Stun magic: creatures with Immunity to it are unaffected.

Used well, this spell becomes a terrible weapon.
That is why I have not added an Area of Effect usage.

Each spell focus feat in Divination school will add +1 to the HP stunned, and reduce by 3 the amount of multiples of excess HP required to get extra rounds duration.

Empower and Extend metamagic can apply.
This too is a "Verbal" spell, and not "Somatic".
Arcane Spell Failure will not affect it.
But "Silence" will.


----------------------------------------
Bug fixes: many.
I report a few:
Spell description says that "Clarity" is counter-spell.
2DA says there is no additional counter-spell.
I have made Clarity an additional counter-spell.

Spell is level 7.
Metamagic data for it was completely wrong.
I fixed it to: Empower, Extend, Quicken, Silent.

2DA classified this as "area of effect indiscriminant".
Not true. This is a single-target ranged harmful attack.
Valid target can be any non-friend to caster.
So I corrected the classification to "harmful ranged".




I believe I have over-powered these two spells now :-p
From "useless" they have become "terrible".
But it is hard to find a good balance.
On one hand, the Immunities to Death Magic and Mind-Affecting magic are easy to get.
On other hand, the HP thresholds can be a little too happy.

A level 40 mage with Epic Spell Focus (Divination) could slay a 600 HP creature.
The same mage with the same feats could Stun a 400 HP creature for many many Rounds.

On a third hand, each spell focus feat you take is a little sacrifice for your build.
So I do not know if I should keep them like this, or lower their power in some way.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 10-Dec-08, 19:25:07
Um, I forgot something.


Hello :-)
I have rewritten the spell: Flame Weapon


Original spell:
Targeted melee weapon gains 1d4 Fire bonus damage +1 per caster level (max +10).
Spell duration is 1 Turn per caster level. Full Metamagic applies.

So at level 10 you can graft from 11 to 14 extra fire damage to apply per hit.
Spell will stack with any permanent elemental damage already present on weapon.
Spell will stack with similar enhancements from other spells like Dark Fire (from Clerics).
I estimate that with actual rules it is possible to stack spells for 60+ damage. Per hit.
Add base damage of weapon. Add permanent elemental damage on weapon... plain over-powered.

But the spell is also very limited.
Only Fire damage. Arcane spellcasters are marvelous at manipulating the elements, and they can only put Fire?
You use the cheap item "Alchemist Fire" and you gain fire damage on a weapon without being a spellcaster.

Let us make it more interesting :-)


----------------------------------------
Flame Weapon is no more. Trace a big X on it.
Now it is: Elemental Weapon.

Targeted melee weapon gains 1d4 elemental damage.
Spell duration is 1 Turn per caster level. Full Metamagic applies.

Elemental Weapon offers 5 subradial choices: Acid, Cold, Electrical, Fire, Sonic.
To keep compatibility with old Flame Weapon, I made so that the default choice is Fire.

Additional +1d4 damage is gained for each spell focus feat you get in Evocation school:
- Spell Focus: +1d4 (+1d4 total)
- Greater Spell Focus: +1d4 (+2d4 total)
- Epic Spell Focus: +1d4 (+3d4 total)

Spell will refuse to work if the target weapon is not melee.
Spell will refuse to work if the target weapon has any permanent elemental damage already.
Spell will replace all temporary elemental damage effects applied from similar spells, including itself.

No rule forbids a Character to equip 2 weapons, each enhanced by Elemental Weapon, either with same element or different elements.

Unlike Flame Weapon, my spell detects if the weapon is equipped as Two-Handed, and applies extra 50% elemental damage like the rule says.

In case of Metamagic Empower, the extra 50% from Two-Handed is applied after the extra 50% from Empower.

Example:
A Wizard with Epic Spell Focus (Evocation) casts an Empowered Elemental Weapon on a Greatsword.
The damage roll to apply is computed as follow:
1) 1d4 base roll.
2) Epic Spell Focus applies, roll becomes 1d4 +3d4 = 4d4 roll.
3) Empower applies, roll becomes 4d4 +50% = 6d4 roll.
4) Two-Handed applies, roll becomes 6d4 +50% = 9d4 roll.

It is all legal.

Like Flame Weapon, my spell is implemented as "OnHit:" temporary item property.
Technical reasons force me to do that.
Like Flame Weapon, my spell is unable to detect Critical Hits from the weapon.
Technical reasons again.

I am squeezing my brain to invent a work-around.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 10-Dec-08, 19:23:40
-- Lord Atton
There is not much choice when you want to be archer.

The "Arcane Archer" Prestige Class makes the best archer of all.

Have lot of Strength and Base Attack Bonus. And AC.
Get a strong bow with the "Mighty" property, and a Critical Multiplier of x3.
And buy lot of special ammunitions. Regular arrows soon become useless.

"Called Shot" feat can be used to reduce the movement rate of targets.
So they will take longer to approach you.
And when they are on you, again "Called Shot" on their arms to lower their Attack Rating.

"Epic Dodge" feat is always a great thing to have.

"Rapid Shot" feat gives you 1 extra ranged attack per round.



-- NOVA
Check you e-mail


-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 10-Dec-08, 14:52:47
Alright, I will take that into consideration.

Keep in mind, however, that ranged weapons do enjoy the advantage of early attacks. You can pump several arrows/bolts into your foe before they can close the distance and engage you in melee. Effective use of a bow is as support (if you are in a party) or as hit/run sniper attacks (if you are solo). If you snipe an enemy from a distance, your enemy can easily be down to half health (if they are not already dead) before they reach you.

The real vulnerability with bows is luring large MOBS to you. Unless you have a secondary weapon set that you can shift to once melee ensues (or you can run away and snipe again), you are at an obvious disadvantage once melee begins no matter how many enemies you face.

Different weapon choices logically require different tactics. I'd like to hear what everyone else thinks.

-NOVA
 
Author: Lord Atton (cosmclord [at] yahoo [dot] com)
Date: 10-Dec-08, 06:23:31
Ok Nova;

I have a suggestion. This is a weapons mod. Bows and crossbows suck as a weapon. There use is little more than a "get the monsters attention" tool. I have had Northwid +8 bow and it still does about half the damage a sword would do. Now how realistic is that. If you can pump enough arrows into a mob yes he will die. I have done that, but in general they turn an attack you so what little good does a weak weapon do you.

Just a thought

Lord Atton
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 09-Dec-08, 04:05:36
-To Fox

Thank you, yes I am aware of this flaw. It's on my list of potential fixes, just not yet corrected on the version I'm running. My list consists of 37 potential modifications/fixes only 7 of which I have already applied to the module I'm running (those seven listed in my post).

Please continue to point out problems as you find them no matter how big or now small. Also suggest any alterations you think would make the module better and why. That does not guarantee I'll agree, but if I don't even know about them it's a certain 0% chance that I can include them.

Please email any scripts etc to support your suggestions. Instructions on how to implement those changes are also much appreciated. This goes for EVERYONE, not just FOX.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 09-Dec-08, 02:22:26
-- NOVA:
[b]6. Fixed the Magic Mushroom which is the recall teleport device for the Werecat subrace.[/b]

There is identical problem in "Valley of Dancing Shadows".
Reported here, some posts ago.



-- Aldabaran:
I am not in special contact with NOVA :-)
Do I give you that impression?

I use this page to share what I do to my game and what wrongs I discover in Rhun.
He takes what he wants from it.

Upgrading the spells is part of my plan to re-balance Rhun.
Rhun is very unbalanced in favor of melee types.

In part this is fault of the standard game spells: they are born weak and flawed, or their power scales bad when above level 20.

In part is fault of Rhun monsters: they can breathe killer spells like fresh air.



----------------------------------------
But I am here for other reason...

Hello!
I have modified: "Lesser Spell mantle", "Spell Mantle" and "Greater Spell Mantle".

Original spells would create a barrier around caster to absorb the following levels pf spells:
-- Lesser Spell Mantle (level 5 spell)
absorbs 1d4 + 6 levels

-- Spell Mantle (level 7 spell)
absorbs 1d8 + 8 levels

-- Greater Spell Mantle (level 9 spell)
absorbs 1d12 + 10 levels

They last 1 Round per caster level.
Any Metamagic applies to all 3 (any that you CAN apply, to be precise).


I have improved them. Spell level absorbtions are the same. Durations are the same.
I added support from spell focus feats in Abjuration school, as follow:

-- Lesser Spell Mantle
Spell Focus = +1 spell levels abrorbed
Greater Spell Focus = +2 spell levels abrorbed
Epic Spell Focus = +3 spell levels abrorbed

-- Spell Mantle
Spell Focus = +2 spell levels abrorbed
Greater Spell Focus = +4 spell levels abrorbed
Epic Spell Focus = +6 spell levels abrorbed

-- Greater Spell Mantle
Spell Focus = +4 spell levels abrorbed
Greater Spell Focus = +8 spell levels abrorbed
Epic Spell Focus = +12 spell levels abrorbed



I also fixed their spell descriptions and actual 2DA data.
-- Lesser Spell Mantle
Says that "Lesser Spell Breach" is a counter spell.
Not true. 2DA says there is no additional counter spells for Lesser Spell Mantle.
I have made it true. Now Lesser Spell Breach is counter spell for Lesser Spell Mantle.

-- Spell Mantle
Says that "Spell Breach" is a counter spell.
Not true. Spell Breach does not exist.
2DA says there is no additional counter spells for Spell Mantle.
I have made so that "Greater Spell Breach" is now counter spell for Spell Mantle.
2DA Metamagic data says it can be Maximized. Not true. I fixed it.

-- Greater Spell Mantle
Says that "Greater Spell Breach" is a counter spell.
Not true. 2DA says there is no additional counter spells for it.
I leave it be. Most obvious (additional) counter spell for Greater Spell Mantle would be Mordenkainen Disjuction. Which is also a dispeller, and so is automatic counter spell(*)

(*) = NWN pdf manual, page 122, "Counterspelling" paragraph.

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 08-Dec-08, 20:23:37
I am running a stock Rhun v1.17b module with the following additional modifications:

1. Rest time is altered so you may only rest once every 5 simulated game hours (15 minutes real time).

2. Added the Omega Forge to the Ancient City of Taer

3. You no longer lose excess XP you gained that exceeds the amount needed for the next level. Therefore, you can continue to accumulate XP even if you choose not to level your character yet.

4. Corrected a magical telescope in Ancient City of Taer that was floating about 20 feet in mid air.

5. Fixed the Werecat subrace recall device so that only Werecats can complete the quest.

6. Fixed the Magic Mushroom which is the recall teleport device for the Werecat subrace.

7. Corrected the thief in the Dugan Plains so that he drops the Bag of Gold (needed to complete an Etum quest).


That's it.

-NOVA
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 08-Dec-08, 19:36:08
Fox, its great to see all these changes, do you happen to know which one Nova is using? You seem to have contact with him outside this forum, maybe that is why he never replies here?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 08-Dec-08, 12:26:40
I have rewritten: Meteor Swarm
This was hard to redo. Took lot of time to come up with a good idea.


----------------------------------------
Original spell:
Everything in 50 feet around caster is pummeled by 20d6 fire damage.
Targets within 6 feet from caster are safe.

A Spell Resistance check is made.
So Monks, spellcasters, and Fire Immunes in general can easily avoid it.

Reflex Save VS Fire is allowed for half damage.
So evaders (Monks and Rogues) may take half or no damage.

The "50 feet" blast radius is in reality a Colossal radius: 10 meters.
So it is only 32.8 feet in spite of what description says.

And the 6 feet safety radius around caster? Stupid.
By the time you cast the spell and the effects start, your foes are toothing your neck, safely inside the no-blast zone.

And the spell requires targeting too!
You hit everything on screen (with center on caster) but you must pick a target?

Not really a powerful 9th level spell when you consider all these details.


----------------------------------------
So I have changed things totally:

A number of meteors (1 every 4 caster levels) is called from sky and blast a Colossal area around the caster.
If a target is hit by a meteor directly, he suffers 1d3 Bludgeoning (per caster level) + 1d3 Fire damage (per caster level).
No save allowed. This is the effect of receiving a sky-to-neck flaming rock: you go idiot for a moment and can not evade a thing (be happy I do not Stun you for Rounds).

But before this, a SR check is made for such targets.
If target wins the check, the meteor go miss and target avoids all Bludgeoning damage.
But they win against the spell that is "homing" the meteor. Not the meteor itself.
The rock is real, and the fire splash-damage too.
So they still have to make a crude Reflex Save.

By "crude" I mean a generic save: the target base Reflex VS the spell DC.
Evasion feats are ignored here, because area is too wide and fire is everywhere.
Bunny around all you want, you still hop into flames :-)

If there are more targets than meteors, excess targets only take 1d3 Fire damage (per caster level).
This is fire splash-damage from nearby meteors. Not a direct hit.
So target is allowed a crude Reflex Save (like above).

The 6 feet no-blast zone around caster is removed.
No targeting is required anymore.

Spell belong to Evocation school.
By taking spell focus feats, extra meteors are gained:
- Spell Focus: +2 meteors (+2 total)
- Greater Spell Focus: +2 meteors (+4 total)
- Epic Spell Focus: +2 meteors (+6 total)

The meteors are called, not created.
They come from the sky, not a magical place.
So this spell can not be cast in "Underground" areas.


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 07-Dec-08, 19:25:17
Me again.
I have rewritten: "Ball Lightning" and "Firebrand" spells.
Both spells (did) abuse the DoMisileStorm() function like the 2 Isaac Missile Storms.


----------------------------------------
Ball Lightning is completely changed.

Original spell:
Level 5. Shoots up to 15 projectiles (1 per caster level, max 15) for 1d6 electrical damage each.
Projectiles split to multi targets like the original Isaac Storms do.
A Spell Resistance check is made.
A Reflex Save is allowed for half damage.
Regardless of SR and Save outcomes, you only need 6/-- resistance to electric to negate all the damage from this spell.
Call this a dangerous spell? It is a level 5. It can not be this weak.

I have rewritten it:
Now up to 1 target per 2 caster levels is picked in a radius of 22 meters from caster.
(22 meters -21.195 exactly- is equal to the "Medium" attack range specified in most spell descriptions)
Each target is candidate to receive 1 projectile that explodes on impact, causing 1d6 electrical damage per caster level (up to 15d6).
Spell Resistance check is in place.
Reflex Save is in place.

In case you wonder, the new behavior is very similar to that of Firebrand.


----------------------------------------
So I have changed Firebrand too.
Best improvement is visual. Now the projectiles will explode like a Fireball.
(Only for the visual part: there is no splash-damage)

Original spell description talks of an explosion.
Original comments in Firebrand script mention explosions.
Original code applies a big flame effect. And the explosions? Haha.

Other than that, I have tweaked Firebrand target-amount and target-picking, so that it is a twin of my new Ball Lightning.
Only difference is in the type of element used.


----------------------------------------
Both spells do cap in power at caster level 15.
Both allow a SR check (for no damage) and a Reflex Save (for half or no damage).
Being level 5 spells, their DC is average.

Both spells belong to Evocation school.
It is fair to get improvements by having spell focus feats:
- Spell Focus: +1d6 damage (+1d6 total)
- Greater Spell Focus: +2d6 damage (+3d6 total)
- Epic Spell Focus: +2d6 damage (+5d6 total)

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 07-Dec-08, 01:14:11
I have rewritten the spell: Flame Arrow.

Original Spell:
1 fiery arrow per 4 caster levels is conjured and hurled to a single target, causing 4d6 fire damage per arrow.
It is a potential of 40d6 Fire damage.

A Reflex Save VS Fire is allowed for half damage.
Meaning that with Evasion feat you can evade all damage if you win the save.
With Improved Evasion you take half damage if you lose the save.

So it is easy to halve or avoid the damage.
But something made this spell one of the best anti-mage.
There is a bug in the Spell Resistance check: it is run once per arrow.

Wonder where is the problem?
Flame Arrow has a Innate Level of 3.
At level 40 you fire 10 arrows, and the spell causes the target to perform 10 SR checks.
Each arrow counts as a level 3 spell, and all 10 arrows together count as a level 30(!) spell.

The best mantle, "Greater Spell Mantle", can absorb from 11 to 22 spell levels.
So a level 32 Flame Arrow would produce 8 arrows, count as a level 24 spell, and tear apart the best Greater Spell Mantle anyone can have, in 1 attack.
Beats all dispellers!

The Reflex save is correctly run per-arrow, instead.


----------------------------------------
I have changed things.

Always 1 arrow per 4 caster levels.
But each arrow inflicts 1d6 piercing, +2d6 fire damage.

No save is allowed for the piercing damage.
A Reflex Save is allowed VS fire (like original).

Spell Resistance check is run only once.
Reflex save is run per arrow.

Piercing damage is class 1d6/+0 (no attack bonus to it).
Meaning that any damage reduction of 6/any will halt all physical damage from the spell.

But things can improve.
For purpose to pierce the more common damage reductions, arrows are given an attack bonus by taking spell focus feats in Conjuration school, as follow:
- Spell Focus: +1 to attack (+1 total)
- Greater Spell Focus: +2 to attack (+3 total)
- Epic Spell Focus: +2 to attack (+5 total)

Each of these feats also add extra 1d6 Fire damage per arrow.


-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Dec-08, 19:25:51
Is this the same mod?
http://nwn.bioware.com/forums/viewtopic.html?topic=657326&forum=44
This one is v1.69. Mabey more stable?
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Dec-08, 19:12:36
Hello again.

I have rewritten the spell: Melf Acid Arrow.

Original spell:
Initial damage from impact of arrow is 3d6 Acid.
Additional +1d6 damage per round is applied for a number of rounds equal to "caster levels / 3" (up to level 40).
So the spell has a potential of: 3d6 + (13 * 1d6), or 16d6 damage.

Looks good for a 2nd level spell. But this damage is given in 14 shots.
At each shot it is subject to damage resistance from Acid.
A target with 18/- Acid resistance can negate it completely.
A little Acid resistance of 6/- is enough to absorb all damage from the 13 rounds.

In patch 1.68, several Acid Arrows could work together.
But in patch 1.69 it is different.
The spell is now made so that only 1 Acid Arrow is allowed on the same target, from the same caster (there is a reason for it).

In patch 1.68, the spell would track its own duration by firing a new function at regular intervals of 1 second.
Every 6 runs of such function (6 seconds make 1 Round), a new +1d6 damage would be applied.
Until spell expiration.
But this would quickly become exorbitant cost for the CPU.

Imagine a pack of 3 spellcasters. Each of them does target you with 5 Acid Arrows.
So you have a total of 15 Acid Arrows active on yourself.
If all those 15 spells last for 1+13 rounds, then all the spells together will tax the CPU by running 15 extra functions per second, for (1+13) * 6 seconds.
It is a grand total of 1260 functions called over 84 seconds.
And to handle 15 spells that are likely to cause 0 damage on target.

Haha.
Go in Rhun. To Wyvern Mountains. At the underground level of Ice Blade Hold.
In there, packs of like 6 dwarves will each cast like 4 Acid Arrows on you.
Could a CPU sweat, yours would lose weight :-)

With the new patch (1.69), they have adopted a "smart" trick to track the duration of the spell, reducing the cost on CPU to 1/6th, because now the functions called are truly 1 per round, to a max of 1+13 rounds per spell.
But the spell had to become non-stackable because of it (technical reasons that are annoying to read, and more annoying to explain).
I just say that their "smart" trick is a CPU cost on its own.
But it is immensely lighter than the 1.68 method.


----------------------------------------
I have changed things completely.

Now the spell inflicts 2d6 Acid on impact of Arrow.
Then, for every 5 caster levels (up to level 15) the spell gains 1 extra round duration and inflict another 2d6 Acid on the target.
So my spell is a little less subject to damage reduction.

Max duration is now 1+3 rounds instead of 1+13.
Potential damage is 8d6 Acid in 4 rounds VS the 16d6 Acid in 14 rounds.
So my spell is a little more powerful.

You can gain extra +1d6 Acid damage per round by getting Spell Focus feats in Conjuration school.
So the damage can be boosted from 8d6 to 20d6, always in 4 rounds.

I have reduced the number of rounds because 14 was excessive duration.
A fight hardly goes for that much time. The original spell would hardly have the "time" to apply all the damage.

Also, my new spell can stack like it did in patch 1.68.
I use a simpler and faster way to track the spell duration without flaw.
All considered, I cut the CPU costs for this spell down to 1/30th of their 1/6th.

So fox :-)

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Dec-08, 10:26:54
as to a decent dwarven waraxe i found a +6 one in one of the houses in Drow City (Underdark).
but that's only one from the many corpses i looted there. so you have to be lucky also.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 05-Dec-08, 03:02:31
Hello,
my quest to improve the standard-game spells continue.
It is turn of the Isaacs spells, the "Lesser" and the "Greater" Missile Storms.


----------------------------------------
Original spells behave quite the same.
Not only a statement: they employ the same function for real! DoMissileStorm().
DoMissileStorm() is also used for the Firebrand spell.
Maybe Flame Arrow too. I have to check for it.

Writing smart generic functions is nice, but the code rarely end up performant.
With my dedicated functions, I carry out twice the instructions in half the time ;-)


Back to Isaacs spells.
They inflict Magical damage, one of the least resistable.
They give no Saving Throw but only a Spell Resistance (SR) check.
They shoot Long-range missiles: you can target as far as fog permits you to see.

Original spells would split missiles as follow:
-- up to 1 target per missile is picked.
-- each target receives at least 1 missile.
-- invisible targets are not picked.
So far so good.

In case of more missiles than targets:
-- each target receives 1 missile.
-- all excess missiles are routed back to first target.

So if we have 20 missiles and 3 targets A, B and C:
-- Target A gets 1 + 17 missiles
-- Target B gets 1 missile
-- Target C gets 1 missile
Is this their idea of splitting?

If a target wins the SR check, the missiles for him are lost.
If target A of my example wins the SR check, 18 missiles are lost.
No good.


----------------------------------------
I do things differently.
My Isaac spells:
Like original, inflict Magical damage.
Like original, give only a SR check.
Unlike original, they shoot Medium-range missiles: so you have to get much closer to target.

Then:
-- up to 1 target per missile is picked.
-- each target receives at least 1 missile.
-- invisible targets are not picked.
Like original.

In case of more missiles than targets:
-- all excess missiles are spread evenly among picked targets.

So if we have 20 missiles and 4 targets A, B, C, D:
-- Target A gets 5 missiles
-- Target B gets 5 missiles
-- Target C gets 5 missiles
-- Target D gets 5 missiles
This is my idea of splitting :-)

If a target wins the SR check, 1 missile is lost to him.
All other missiles are NOT lost. They are redistributed to the other targets.
You lose all missiles only if all targets win the SR check.
It is logical. When that happens you have wasted your spell entirely :-)

If we have 20 missiles and 4 targets A, B, C, D... and target B wins the SR check, then missiles are split as follow:
-- Target A gets 7 real missiles
-- Target B gets 1 dummy missile
-- Target C gets 6 real missiles
-- Target D gets 6 real missiles

The dummy missile looks like real, but produce no damage.
You can never see more missiles than you can fire.
That is why the dummy ones count as real missiles, but produce no damage, and so they are "lost" bullets.

My Isaac spells fire missiles in a "interlaced" manner. I do not know a better term :-(
The spell fires 1 missile at a time, with delays of 0.1 seconds.

Take again target A, B, C, D from previous example.
This is the timing for their 20 missiles:
-- Target A: 0.1 - 0.5 - 0.8 - 1.1 - 1.4 - 1.7 - 2.0 (7 missiles)
-- Target B: 0.2 (1 missile)
-- Target C: 0.3 - 0.6 - 0.9 - 1.2 - 1.5 - 1.8 (6 missiles)
-- Target D: 0.4 - 0.7 - 1.0 - 1.3 - 1.6 - 1.9 (6 missiles)

It is a spectacle to see in motion :-)


----------------------------------------
I am personal fan of Isaacs Storms. But they are too quick to max out their power.
So I have tweaked them.
On one hand, they now require twice the caster levels to reach the same power of original spells.
On the other hand, they can now surpass the power of the original spells.

You do not gain 1 missile per level, up to max missiles (10 for ILMS, 20 for IGMS).
Now you gain 1 missile per 2 levels. Number of max missiles is unchanged.
So if you want all 20 missiles for the Greater Storm, you have to be level 40.
(And Rogues can no more cast super-spells from cheap-scrolls ;-)

You can take Spell Focus feats in Evocation school, and gain per-missile extra damage:
-- Spell Focus = +1 damage
-- Greater Spell Focus = +1 damage (total: +2)
-- Epic Spell Focus = +1 damage (total: +3)

These rules apply to monsters too.

Unlike original spells, my spells now have 2 working modes: single OR multi targeting.
Single targeting: Target a hostile creature directly. All missiles will go to her.
Multi targeting: Target yourself. Missiles will spread to targets seen around you.

Speaking of this, I fix a bug from original spells:
You could cast to a far Long-range point on ground. The spell would fire missiles to targets found within 25 feets from THAT point.
Being Long-range, you could hit multiple targets, multiple times, before they could approach you and fight back.

My spells, instead (for multi-target mode) pick targets found within 30 feets (not 25) around YOU.
So you have to be much closer if you want to hit stuff.


----------------------------------------
Will the A.I. recognize the 2 working modes from my spells?
No. Monsters showed to always pick a target directly.
So a player would receive all missiles in most cases. This is troubly.

So I introduce a check at the begin of spell: if Caster is NOT a player, working mode is forced to multi-target.
In this way missiles will always spread.
If you are the only target found, all missiles will "spread" to you. It is logical :-)


-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 30-Nov-08, 00:19:14
Improvement for the halved Wind Buffet idea:

Check for the target creature Category Size.
Dragons are Huge, so it is fair if they have an advantage over smaller creatures.
And it is fair the opposite.

I would adjust the DC of the Wind Buffet by multiples of +2 or -2 as follow:
-- target is Huge? -4 DC
-- target is Large? -2 DC
-- target is Medium? +/-0 DC
-- target is Small? +2 DC
-- target is Tiny? +4 DC

A Level 60 dragon VS a Huge creature would produce a Buffet DC of (60 / 2) - 4 = 26.
The same dragon VS a Tiny creature would produce a Buffet DC of (60 / 2) + 4 = 34.

This category check is not senseless.
Players (Medium size) can have Familiars (Pixie is Tiny), Animal Companions (Badger is small), Summoned Creatures (Balor is Large), Dominated Animals (bears are Medium)...
Players can also morph or shapeshift into Giants or Adult Dragons (both are Huge).

So a target for the Wind Buffet can be any size.

At the moment the wind buffet script quits if the target is a Huge creature.
That check should be removed and the dragon should attempt to Buffet any target regardless of size.


Last note, I see some dragons possess 2 different Breath Weapons (Vrybenganon is one example. Careac too perhaps).

That is against the rules.
They have 1 mouth, and their Breath is an innate weapon based on the dragon subtype.

So only 1 type of breath weapon should be allowed.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-Nov-08, 19:59:40
Serious.


Remove all "Harm" spells from the loaded creature Special/Abilities.
Harm is given too lightly.
It should be a thing known only to high level Liches, Sorcerers, Wizards, Druids or Clerics.
In Rhun instead a stupid ant-like creature can Harm you down from 770 to 1d4 HP in one attack.
At that point it only takes one of the creatures around you to score a lucky +20 attack roll, and you are done.
It is ridicolous.
Either remove Harm from all creatures, or give players a way to obtain the Shadow Shield spell, which will make them Immune to all Necromancy spells.
I notice that the "Rune of Soothing" reward is given by 2 Etum quests.
One is from Erugor Senken (map from Hagar Swamp), and the other one is for delivering the letter to Glacial Hills (Gareg-something rewards you).
I would change the reward from Gareg with a Rune of Shadow Shield, or the like.


Dragons have their Wind Buffet attack.
That is (1) a hack, and (2) overpowered.
DC is equal to the dragon HitDie.
A level 60 dragon will knock you down without chance to save (how can you pump a Reflex save to 60? -I repeat Rhun modders are idiots from hair to feet-)
And then you are in trouble.
Also the Wind Buffet is a script attack. It does not account for Discipline, Immunity to Knockdown or Evasion feats, but only looks at your crude Reflex saving throw.
And can trigger unlimited times too.
Why do not give the dragon the "I Win" button?
Wait. They did... Some dragons (like Careac) possess a couple of "Bolt of Death" attacks.
Given their stats those Bolts are like silver bullets: and you die.
But you can always respawn. So it is pointless to be killed like that.
And Bolt of Death attacks are meant as high threat attack from low level creatures only.

The Wind Buffet of dragons is bad implemented.
Disable it completely (there is a flag for it), or modify the script and halve the DC, so it takes half the dragon level.
A level 60 dragon would still buffet you with a DC 30 attack, which is not low.


I have looked for Dwarven Waraxes everywhere. No monster will drop one, unless it is a random loot (and good luck).
One of the Matron Mothers does carry one. But it is undroppable, and the Matron can not be disarmed.
The other cool Waraxe is the Epic one. But you need to restore the Ancient City to get it.
An likely you have this one when you kill that Matron.
But before restoring Ancient City what do you use to fight?

Not many evil dwarves in Rhun. Owidd mountain is out of question.
So the only other place is "Ice Blade Hold", up in Wyvern Mountains, past the Obelisk.
There they have a little fortress, complete with a dwarf boss guarded by many minions.
I believe it is perfect to give that dwarf boss an "Axe of the Dwarf Lord".
So he can drop it when you kill him. Or make him also use the weapon, and set him to disarmable.
There would be a use for the Disarm feat.
It is a +7 Dwarven Waraxe, with only some Sonic damage. No other properties.
While good, it is not exceptional. And you have to fight a lot if you want to get it.
By the way: it is a weapon from the standard NWN, not Rhun-made.


No more suggestions for now.
-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 29-Nov-08, 12:04:37
NOVA,
remember the werecats village and their teleport device, blah?

In the Valley of Dancing Shadows (past the Old World Forest) there is a similar problem.

The elves there will not give you any quest.
But if you explore a nearby cave and recover a Harp object, the priestess will talk to you as if you completed her quest, and will give you a teleport device that stays glued to your inventory.


--------------------
Is it me visiting at the wrong time, or is the "Paladin Tomb" always empty and with nothing to do inside?

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Nov-08, 22:25:51
NOVA,
I have finally understood what is wrong with Time Stop.
It was so simple, and I did not get it :-)
It is not Time Stop. It is a "fake".
Rhun uses a fake so they can implement a cloak of invulnerability against Time Stop.

The standard Time Stop freezes time for everyone, everywhere, except the caster.
The caster is disallowed to take any hostile action against anyone.

Rhun Time Stop instead does not freeze time. And the caster is free to launch spells at targets.
It is wrong. And unfair.
Time Stop is meant to be a defensive-only spell.
Some monsters in Rhun instead make it part of their attack strategy. First they freeze you, then they beat you with missile storms.

Please trash the script used in Rhun.
Delete it or rename it, so that the original Time Stop script can return to work, automatically.

There is no thing like immunity to Time Stop.
Because there is no need. During Time Stop you are stopped, but you are supposed to be SAFE.
This is the rule.


--------------------
I reached Taer :-)
I am exploring the desert.
The layout is disorienting for me. Still taking notes of what is where.

Monsters there are difficult.
I can handle them, but I drink the occasional potion.

I believe the Formians respawn too quick.
I understand they are like a colony of ants, and it is believable that there are so many all around.
But it is not understandable that they are so many and so strong and so quick to respawn.
It is unbalanced.
I would double their respawn time.
But keep the amount of creatures. That is perfect, I believe.

The Basilisk are a little useless.
Their gaze is DC 13.
Almost impossible to fail a save by the time you can explore Taer.

The small spiders are annoying instead.
They root me in place and I can never loot their corpse to see if they drop something good (grr rage...)


--------------------
I have completed all the quests from Etum.
Except 3: the one for the Bag of Gold (bandit in Dugan Plains --forgot to fix it like you did--), and the 2 who send you to Elidor (keeping them for later).

The other Bag quest (related to the werewolves) is not broken, instead.
Go to Sadoor Woods. Reach the center of the area.
Face the south-east corner and walk toward it.
At halfway you find a plant-like object. Bag of Jewels is inside.

So I confirm that only 1 quest was broken.
All the others are working correctly.


--------------------
I close with a personal request: do you know where I can find a decent Dwarven Waraxe, for sure?
I have walked half the world, killed everything I saw, and still I have the stupid +3 Waraxe bought from Etum shop.

I used [b]that[/b] to kill the Spectre King in Stralad Catacombs. Can you imagine it?
I surely can.
I also killed Zelifax, but none of the many loots up and down his tower did give me a Dwarven Waraxe better than +3.

Level 33 now. In need of a serious weapon. Please?

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 25-Nov-08, 15:18:47
NOVA,
Little corrections for Rhun:

In Stralten Castle -- Level 3
there is the Vampire Cleric.
He is not undead (he should be).
He is invincible (he should not be).
He is a lame warrior (you would think a vampire in that position would put up a fight).

I raided the Castle yesterday with my dwarf.
Then I explored the up floors and found this cleric that is clearly out of place.
I could not kill him, or leave him behind.
So I could not complete the exploration.
I imagine he is not alone.
More non-undeads may be present.

But is not a Vampire Cleric a nonsense?
What god would he serve?
Vampires recognize no deity.
And no deity is willing to bless a vampire with his/her powers.
So the "Cleric" is really the one thing a vampire can never be.

---------------
Stralad Palace is filled with Spectres.
I find them overpowered. They are clearly very high level (no problem in that), but they possess attacks with a DC that is very hard to resist.
Their Negative Energy attack is DC 30.
And if they score hits with that one, you are doomed to a premature end (due to level drain and progressive loss of powers -- not to speak of your Fortitude, making it more likely to succumb to the next level drain attack).

Also, they are constantly in Parry mode and possess a high AC.
So it is easy for them to block your attacks.

Last note, they are given the Epic Dodge feat. Epic Dodge is not meant for grunts.
Only PC or plot-creatures should have it.
Those Spectres are dangerous without Epic Dodge.
No need for extra aids.

---------------
Last note. In Stralad Palace you find many treasure chests that are locked.
You need a Rogue, or a Wizard with Pixie, if you want to pick-lock them.

But Rogues would have impossible life in there. Undeads are their nemesis.

The place is cool to explore (especially the catacombs far below), but needs some good tweaking.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Nov-08, 19:39:31
Too much to write here.
I have sent e-mail.

Take what you find useful from it.

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 19-Nov-08, 04:14:37
No I have not, but that's not because of technical challenges. It's because I don't know what I want the effect to be. For instance, do I simply want the shops to completely reset after every XX amount of time has passed? This would mean all items sold to the shops would suddenly disappear. I could also set it up so only items below a certain gold value have a time limit in the stores. This way the more powerful items stay there longer and can be purchased by someone else eventually. I just don't know what I want the effect to be.

Fortunately, the server is so small it requires only occasional manual intervention. When a shop fills up with so much stuff that it is lagging the server when someone uses that shop, I simply go in and manually remove all of the duplicate items and all of the gold-only items (like gemstones etc). Alternatively, I could simply restart the entire server every couple of days. This resets EVERYTHING back to initial conditions. If this was an intense and heavily populated server, I would want a better and automated solution. But it's not, so this works for now.

I'd still like to hear what your suggestions are though, so either post them here or email them to me.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 19-Nov-08, 01:46:13
NOVA,
have you found a solution to the problem of the shops that would get full and lag the server?

I know of a solution that is guaranteed to work.
But it requires some work if you want to apply it to Rhun.

I also have useful tips for improving the over-all server performance.
This too is worky.

Long text to write. If you are interested, I send you a e-mail.

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 18-Nov-08, 00:21:31
i'm sure you're gonna like the book
it almost reads like a novel cuz Huxley is such an eminent writer.
i think you're lucky cuz i found it on [url=http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/offer-listing/0099477823/ref=sr_1_olp_24?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1226951941&sr=1-24]amazon.co.uk[/url].
and very, very cheap.
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 17-Nov-08, 21:03:43
i'm sure you're gonna like the book
it almost reads like a novel cuz Huxley is such an eminent writer.
i think you're lucky cuz i found it on [url=http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/offer-listing/0099477823/ref=sr_1_olp_24?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1226951941&sr=1-24]amazon.co.uk[/url].
and very, very cheap.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Nov-08, 22:04:46
I will read the book. It is something different for a change :-)

Possibly it holds a story that can be ported to NWN (with the due changes, obvious).
But I can not be sure until I read it.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Nov-08, 21:58:05
Some more details:

Each of the noble families in the Inner Walls has control (more or less directly) over a slice of the town. Imagine this like a pie chart.
This control originates from the fact that the nobles were the initial owners of the nude ground over which have later been built the various building that form the town.

A few of the most powerful nobles also have more ground of their own outside the Outer Wall.
So they possess some farms and fields. These nobles are in open contrast with the Druids and their groove. Because the Druids are all nature-lovers an all... but they are really annoying (more or less like modern pacifists, animalists, greenpeace, etc etc are --not that I have anything against them--).

The nobility is the real power in the city. The king is more like their puppet put in charge to physically rapresent The Power.
But the king stays because the nobles allow for that. Anyone with some brain in town understands it.

However, the king is good at playing the nobles against each other (he is king for a reason, I suppose), and that is why he keeps staying in power: because the nobles can not manage to reach agreement to remove him from the seat.
That is also another reason why the king would allow one of the players to take the place of one of the nobility. The king would find in this player one of his (possibly) trusted allies.

The rejected noble (the one kicked out from HollyVIP) would plot against the player. Assassination attempts, accusation of false crimes (with proofs and all), etc...

To remain at his place, the player must survive all this. If he his compromised in the eyes of the king, then the king will kick him out and return him among the commoners (what happens to the player past that, I have not thought of yet).

While the player is whitin the nobility, he will be secretly approached by the other nobles who plot from a long time to remove the actual king from power.
Player may choose to betray them (and reveal all to the king), or try and help them in their plan.
The reward for this would be to ascend to the trone as new ruler of the realm (should the module be reset at that point?).
Of course in case of failure the punishment would be hard. You do not plot against a king, fail, and survive to tell the tale :-)

So entering the nobility will not be a happy trip for a player. Big rewards are due, if he does.
I am thinking of allowing him to have his custom blacksmith, alchemist and other useful people like that. All would offer their services for free, of course.
Monthly, some gold would be deducted from the cash amount of the player, as payment (EXPENSIVE payment) for all this luxury he is granted.
So the player will be forced to keep going out adventuring and find ways to make cash, because his new style of life is rewarding and insanely costing, and -like all nobles- he happens to spend more gold than what he gets from the crown /that is why all nobles are always involved in dirty affairs to collect money quickly).
In case the player can not sustain all this, he starts losing the services of his personal aids. Eventually, he is kicked out of home AND nobility: because a poor noble is a shame for the crown.

I need more ideas...

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Nov-08, 21:31:22
i don't want to start an argument, but all the ingredients for a story you mention can be found in what i proposed:

-- monsters
what about Dracula kind of monsters in Transsylvania (Balkan), forest monsters in the back then huge European forests, icy ones in Scandinavia and, Arab tribes in Middle East and so on;
-- a great evil to kick the butt of
that could be Dracula
-- travelling to other planes of existence (non-ordinary places to visit)
the vast area of Europe can provide all that
-- magic (in any form)
ofcourse ther is plenty around everywhere

The Realm could be France;
The Capital would be Paris ofcourse;
The Castle the Royal Court;
The King would be King Louis XIII (with the Queen Mother in the background);
The evil spirit behind all this would be Richelieu, both bishop and later cardinal and minister of foreign affairs;

Everything you mention about how the society is organised and structured is there also, more or less exactly as you described.
And you write
"..... you need to be noticed by the king.
So you must achieve impressive feats... something that will make people speak, until the word reaches the kings ear, and he decides that he wants to see who this person is (you)."

That's exactly what Father Joseph did, from being a commoner to finally becoming a mediator between parties all over Europe as Richelieu's aid. Meddling in politics was clearly a divine duty for him.

I quote from the book:

"Father Joseph, as we have seen, was intensely a patriot and a royalist. Born and brought up during the civil wars, he had conceived a veritable passion for national unity, for order and for what was then the sole guarantee of these two goods, the monarchy. This passion had been rationalized into a religious principle by means of the old crusading faith in the divine mission of France and the newly popularized doctrine of the divine right of kings. "Gesta Dei per Francos" summed up the first belief; the second was to find its most pregnantly abbreviated expression in Bossuet's dictum: 'The King, Jesus Christ, the Church - God under these three names.' Hanotaux, the historian of Cardinal Richelieu, writes of the Capuchin (= Father Joseph) that 'he gave himself to two high causes, which absorbed his life, God and France, always ready to work and fight for either cause, but never separating one from the other, always responding to the call of an inner conviction, namely that France is the instrument of Providence and French greatness a providential thing.' Granted the validity of these doctrines - doctrines which he held with a burning intensity of conviction - it was obviously Father Joseph's duty to undertake political work for king and country, when called upon to do so. It was his duty because, ex hypothesi, such political work was as truly the will of God as the work of preaching, teaching and contemplation."

No wonder that all the atrocities of war were legitimized by the country and ultimately justified by God. So King and country could do what they wanted ..... with God on their side (as it still is the case today).

Allthough the story would be based on actual events (which makes it easier to write) it has to be phantasy, with different names and such.
The player can be any character you like to be, but he (or she) will always be on the road to foreign places to get things done or stir things up. In the end he won't be the hero as in other games, but a hero that leaves something of a bad taste: the intended good appeared to be evil in the end.

If you like to read the book and give it to yourself as a Christmas present, that's a great idea and the best present you ever had. Because it is a great book and Huxley is one of my all time favourite writers. He not only can write brilliantly but also can think sanely and put things in an enlightened perspective.
Best place to look for it would be amazon.com, if you're lucky. Hope you are!
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Nov-08, 19:21:00
BBking,
thank you for the input.

I have never read that book.
I like books. And stories of intrigue. And probably I can like that book.
(I know what to gift myself for Christmas now :-)

But I think it is not a good idea to port it in NWN.
Even with CEP, it is very likely that there is not enough contents to reproduce the hystorical period of 17th century, or the visited locations, in an acceptable way.

I have taken a look at the "most liked" modules on the nwnvault.
They can differ greatly from each other, but all have some traits in common:
-- monsters
-- a great evil to kick the butt of
-- travelling to other planes of existence (non-ordinary places to visit)
-- magic (in any form)

I was thinking to a story with those ingredients in.
A hobby of mine is to write. So I *would* have a story to tell.
But it is far from complete. And it lacks the necessary details for a porting in NWN.
It does not count until I am satisfied with it.



Perhaps it would be simpler to make my own persistent world, instead of a single player module.
I have some ideas for a plot (even a PW needs a plot).
Want to hear it?


Here:
There is this Realm "X" (name to decide), with this big capitol city "Y".
Like all realms with a capitol, there is a castle in the capitol and a king "Z" in the castle.
I am very original :-)

Population of the city is split in 3 main groups: nobility, merchants, commoners.
Player is born among the commoners.
And he has the typical life of the commoner.
A hard life. Nobody cares for you, and anybody who is not a commoner looks down on you.
And some of the commoners too look down on you.

The king does not even care that you -or any one else- exist, of course.
All the king cares for is his own well-being, his power, and his riches.
This is the typical king: tyrannical, spoiled, insanely rich, annoyed, merciless.
His word is the Verb. Got it?

There are other realms. A state of peace is maintained with them.
This realm is the biggest, so the chances that the other realms will make war with it are slim.
There are no wars when the story begins. Not sure if there will be later (still to decide).

Players must have goals. What is their goal then?
To achieve power and respect, of course.
As a commoner you have a miserable life. But if you become rich, maybe you can buy your place among the nobility.
Maybe you can even go live inside the primary castle walls, where the HollyVIPs live!

But you need to get the blessings of the king to do that.
And before that, you need to be noticed by the king.
So you must achieve impressive feats... something that will make people speak, until the word reaches the kings ear, and he decides that he wants to see who this person is (you).

He will acknowledge that you have become important. Too important to live in the slums.
So he will propose that you move your home inside the primary castle walls.
Player is free to accept (he should), or decline (he would disappoint his king, most likely).

Here is the problem.
Castle cities do grow in time. This big big city is a few centuries old now.
The primary castle walls are those that once enclosed the first homes in the city. The homes of the founders.
The families living there have (in time) grown powerful and rich. And they eventually formed the actual nobility.
Merchants and Commoners live outside of those walls. All around in every direction, because this is so big and has kept growing.
And so... there is no more room to build a new Nobility Home witin the primary castle walls.
So... if you have to move in there... someone else has to be kicked out of his home.

The king has no problem with that. He does what he wants, and -technically- every inch of the realm belongs to him: so he can decide who is allowed to make his home where.
And nobody can argue. Not even the nobility.
The player is given the chance to choose which noble to kick out of his home.
The king will comply (is "comply" the right word?)

But the former noble will not like the treatment. And of course will blame the player for it (who would not?)
And this noble will seek revenge on that player (and any who aids him).
This is what will set in motion the Great Evil that all players will have to face at some point.
Pretty much all of it is to decide.


What happens to the other players?

Until at least 1 player moves within the primary castle walls, then life is the same for all players. Everyone tries to become strong and do impressive things to get the favour of the king.

When 1 player succeed, and the noble yells "revenge!", then some major events will occur in the module.
Players are free to participate or not.

When (and if) the major events are passed, and the Great Evil has been kicked in the teeth, the module resets for everyone.


Lot of details are to decide.
There are guilds, like in Rhun. The most respected guilds of all are 3: Paladins, Clerics, and Wizards.

These guilds are located closer to the primary castle walls. Just outside of them.
And still inside the city, of course.
The city is split in 3 major concentric zones. Each zone is eclosed in a circle of walls.
At the center of all is the castle.
All around the castle are the primary walls (lets call them the Inner Walls from now).
Inside the Inner Walls is located the nobility and their homes, along with the cathedral and the royal academy, who trains the royal guards.
The royal guards are rarely seen outside the Inner Walls.

Then we have the zone populated by the rich merchants and stuff like that. They are not nobles, but they are not starving commoners either. Their zone is enclosed by the Mid Circle of Walls.
Inside this circle we find (like I said) the Paladins, Clerics and Wizards guild.
There are also the barracks of the city guard (or city watch). They are the police force that keeps order in town. The biggest of the city guards barracks also houses the Fighters guild.

Outside of this Mid Walls are the slums, where the majority of the population lives.
Some areas of the slums are not exactly poor like the rest.
In these areas are located the Sorcerers, Bards and Monks guilds.
More barracks are found here. Same as the city guard, just smaller.
The slums are enclosed in the Outer (and last) Circle of walls.

Outside of the Outer Wall begins the rural area. Law is poorly enforced here.
Sporadic guards patrols can be seen, but it is not a convincing force.
The Thieves guild is located here. Somewhere. Hidden (obviously).
What you see here are farms and poor looking homes.
No wall encloses this.
The area is peaceful and safe. Courtesy of the Druids who have their groove not too far, in the nearby forest. They keep things balanced, and allow no monster to wander too close to the town. Druids also help in sustaining the farmers, so they are occasionally seen around the Outer Walls. But they almost never step inside the city proper. They do not like towns and civilization, you know.

Much further away from the town and the farms are found several encampments of Rangers.
These are spread a bit of everywhere, in the true wilderness areas.
Hostiles are to be expected. Rangers perform periodical patrols around these parts, and sometimes they can be seen further deep in the wilderness, in small groups of 2.


Depending of what starting Class a player selects for his character, he will end up somewhere near one of the mentioned locations.
He will start searching for stuff to do, according to his chosen profession, and his life will develop from there.
The fact that the Wizards guild is located closer to the castle does not imply that a Wizard player will have a paved road ahead.
Wizard he may be, and part of a respected guild too... but he still counts less than 0 in the eyes of his king.

Multiclass characters are restricted to 1 guild. Their first class dictates what guild.
I plan to make the game experience much different for each class.

Eventually the player will gain ranks in society, and will be allowed to enter the royal accademy. That is (for him) the closest thing to nobility.
There he will be given the chance to do really impressive stuff. And maybe the king will take notice of him. And reward him like I explained :-)


There are so many more details to define. My brain is smoking.
No point in starting with the module until at least 90% of it is decided.
I am open to ideas.

-fox
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Nov-08, 13:13:23
hey fox ..... a story?
Some years ago i had an idea about a possible RPG-story.
It was based on a not well-known but nevertheless superb book by Aldous Huxley, called Grey Eminence.
It's a non-fictional biography and is about the dangerous combination of politics and religion, in this case mysticism.
The "playing" field is 17th century greater Europe, with all its monarchs, dukes, counts of France, England, Austria, Spain, Italy, Germany, the Balkan on the one hand and the protestant and catholic leaders on the other. It's about the eternal struggle between good and evil. Or what the major players consider to be good and evil.

To quote from the back cover:
"The life of Father Joseph, Cardinal Richelieu's aide and inspirer in foreign policy, was a monstrous paradox. After a day spent in directing operations on the battlefield he would pass the night in prayer, or in composing spiritual guidance for the nuns in his charge. He was an aspirant to sainthood, a practicing mystic, yet his ruthless exercise of power succeeded in prolonging the Thirty Years War, with all its unspeakable horrors.
For Father Joseph believed that he could create the kingdom of heaven on earth through political means, and his desperate effort to weld together politics and mysticism is the subject of this extraordinry biography." -- OBSERVER

Since reality has always been more horrific than the wildest imagination, this book could provide a good historical story line about power struggles, intrigues, corruption, deceit, wars, saints and satans and everything else you can think of. "Europe" would cover an area from the Scandinavian countries in the north to the northern African countries in the south. And from the Anglo-Saxon islands in the west to the East-European countries and Russia and even Turkey and the Middle East countries like Iraq and Persia in the east. A huge and varied playing field.

Try to imagine those 17th century days. I think it has potential and could be very interesting.
What say you? lol
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Nov-08, 13:13:18
hey fox ..... a story?
Some years ago i had an idea about a possible RPG-story.
It was based on a not well-known but nevertheless superb book by Aldous Huxley, called Grey Eminence.
It's a non-fictional biography and is about the dangerous combination of politics and religion, in this case mysticism.
The "playing" field is 17th century greater Europe, with all its monarchs, dukes, counts of France, England, Austria, Spain, Italy, Germany, the Balkan on the one hand and the protestant and catholic leaders on the other. It's about the eternal struggle between good and evil. Or what the major players consider to be good and evil.

To quote from the back cover:
"The life of Father Joseph, Cardinal Richelieu's aide and inspirer in foreign policy, was a monstrous paradox. After a day spent in directing operations on the battlefield he would pass the night in prayer, or in composing spiritual guidance for the nuns in his charge. He was an aspirant to sainthood, a practicing mystic, yet his ruthless exercise of power succeeded in prolonging the Thirty Years War, with all its unspeakable horrors.
For Father Joseph believed that he could create the kingdom of heaven on earth through political means, and his desperate effort to weld together politics and mysticism is the subject of this extraordinry biography." -- OBSERVER

Since reality has always been more horrific than the wildest imagination, this book could provide a good historical story line about power struggles, intrigues, corruption, deceit, wars, saints and satans and everything else you can think of. "Europe" would cover an area from the Scandinavian countries in the north to the northern African countries in the south. And from the Anglo-Saxon islands in the west to the East-European countries and Russia and even Turkey and the Middle East countries like Iraq and Persia in the east. A huge and varied playing field.

Try to imagine those 17th century days. I think it has potential and could be very interesting.
What say you? lol
 
Author: bbKing (arsnova30 [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Nov-08, 11:20:45
hey fox ..... a story?
Some years ago i had an idea about a possible RPG-story.
It was based on a not well-known but nevertheless superb book by Aldous Huxley, called Grey Eminence.
It's a non-fictional biography and is about the dangerous combination of politics and religion, in this case mysticism.
The "playing" field is 17th century greater Europe, with all its monarchs, dukes, counts of France, England, Austria, Spain, Italy, Germany, the Balkan on the one hand and the protestant and catholic leaders on the other. It's about the eternal struggle between good and evil. Or what the major players consider to be good and evil.

To quote from the back cover:
"The life of Father Joseph, Cardinal Richelieu's aide and inspirer in foreign policy, was a monstrous paradox. After a day spent in directing operations on the battlefield he would pass the night in prayer, or in composing spiritual guidance for the nuns in his charge. He was an aspirant to sainthood, a practicing mystic, yet his ruthless exercise of power succeeded in prolonging the Thirty Years War, with all its unspeakable horrors.
For Father Joseph believed that he could create the kingdom of heaven on earth through political means, and his desperate effort to weld together politics and mysticism is the subject of this extraordinry biography." -- OBSERVER

Since reality has always been more horrific than the wildest imagination, this book could provide a good historical story line about power struggles, intrigues, corruption, deceit, wars, saints and satans and everything else you can think of. "Europe" would cover an area from the Scandinavian countries in the north to the northern African countries in the south. And from the Anglo-Saxon islands in the west to the East-European countries and Russia and even Turkey and the Middle East countries like Iraq and Persia in the east. A huge and varied playing field.

Try to imagine those 17th century days. I think it has potential and could be very interesting.
What say you? lol
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 16-Nov-08, 02:27:20
About making Rhun the "perfect module"... I believe that borders the impossible.

Rhun was born flawed to the core. To adjust it, means to put hands at every little aspect of the module.

If it was smaller, then you could have seriously thought of doing it.
But Rhun is too big. And complex.
Knowing the game you see when you play, is one thing.
To have intimate knowledge of the inside workings, is a different thing.

You did not participate in Rhun construction, so it would be a titanic quest: because you need to learn where-is-what and how it works.
And more important: why it works like that.

Sometimes in scripts you see the authors make strange choices. Maybe they do not leave a line of comment to explain.
You first think: why they did like that, and not like so?
The answer could be: they did not know it could have been done in a better way (and maybe later they learned, but never bothered to correct the older scripts).
OR the answer could be: they did that, and not so, because there is a valid reason. But you are not told which reason, and are left to discover it on your own.

NWScript is nice and quick to learn.
But it is not perfect, and not complete.
In some cases I myself have been fighting with the limitations of the language.
So far I have found solutions to achieve my goals.
But I would have preferred that the authors of the game did put more effort in their creation.
Still, NWScript is flexible and cool to use.



I say that it is easier if you start your own Rhun.
It is faster too.

I would reuse the regular monsters of NWN.
That would also cut down the loading times, considerably.
(not to tell of the reduced build times)

No custom XP award system. Reuse that of NWN, which is certainly more accurate (and you can tweak it by moving a single slider too!)

To balance things for all classes you only need to make the module acceptable for a pure spallcaster (like a Wizard).
When that is done, you can think of the appropriate equipment for the other classes, so that they can fill the gap (if there is gap) with the spellcasters.
If you do the opposite instead, then you can not fill the gap unless you rewrite the spells.
It is certainly faster to throw new items in the module, than writing and testing new spell scripts.
And spells are used by monsters too. So if you change them, you may shift the balance of the module considerably, and then you would have to re-balance again for everyone.

The original NWN A.I. somewhat sucks.
The famous Tony-K A.I. makes creatures a lot smarter and reactive.
And if I am not mistaken Rhun does use Tony-K A.I.

I would trash the subrace system from Shayan. That is a monstrous load of scripts that do not add very much to the game.
It is cool to play the Lich. But is it really so different from a Sorcerer or Wizard?
I do not think so.

There are enough Prestige Classes in the game out-of-the-box to make things different for everyone if you care.


I am thinking to make my own module, really.
If I do not have all the knowledge needed, I am very close to it.

I can invent spells. I can spot and correct bugs in original scripts.
I know how to use the Faction, Journal and Conversation editors.
Crafting items and customizing creatures needs no learning.
Designing areas only takes some imagination.
Triggers are easy to use.
Even the horses have a flat learning curve.
And they actually add something to the game :-)

I need to experiment with henchmen and databases.
Then I am ready to begin.

... I lack a good story to tell, though...

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 15-Nov-08, 16:28:57
A suggestion: trash the Rhun XP reward system, and revert to the standard NWN one.

That alone will slow the characters leveling.

You can always raise the XP slider above 10% to speed up things again :-)

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 13-Nov-08, 23:20:53
I spent a few days dreaming wildly of all the amazing things that could/should change to make Rhun a PERFECT MODULE. Having now purged myself of all my high and lofty goals for modifying Rhun, I would now like to return to a dose of reality. Fact is, I simply do not have the time, expertise, nor really the sustainable motivation to complete such huge and lofty projects. As such, and because we have such a small gaming community, I would like to instead throw it out to those of you playing to tell me what style of play or what changes (if any) you would like to see made to Rhun.

As the World of Rhun plays right now, it is very much like ROM2. Though it has a lot of small quests you can complete (and a few bigger ones too), it's really mostly a hack-n-slash module where you just roam around and kill shit for gold and gear rewards. The stuff you find in the various shops is adequate for your first 5 level gains (max character level is 40), but in order to get anything better than that you'll need to go out and FIND random loot. This pretty much forces you to go out and explore every corner of Rhun looking for treasure.

Because the NWN game only gives 40 level gains to your character, each level represents a giant leap forward. And if you know your way around Rhun and put in the time and effort, I think you can realistically max your character out (start to finish) in about 30-40 hours of intensive game play (or an average of 1 level for every hour or so of play). So if you play on average 3-4 hours per day, that's a cozy 2 weeks of gaming to max out that one character. You no longer get better by advancing levels. In fact, any improvements you make past this point are generally nothing more than minor nuances to your character and are done purely through trying to maximize the gear set your character carries.

At this point, you are probably looking to either start a totally new character or quit the game altogether. There are of course many many other character classes and races you can experiment with (40 or more). And of course you can always switch from GOOD to EVIL or back. So once you are familiar with Rhun from one character's perspective, you can always try another. The view and the challenges you face are generally drastically different (especially with some of the sub-races you can play....like Lich or Vampire).

In total, Rhun even as it is now can easily provide 150+ hours a actual game time enjoyment before I think you would become totally bored with it. The question is: is this too short? Should the character progression be slowed down so that it takes longer to max your character out? Or should it be even faster?

Personally, I'm actually having a lot of fun leveling about 8 or 9 different characters at the same time. And although it seems to go fast, I find myself wishing at times I could level even faster (maybe I'm just impatient by nature). I know my way around Rhun pretty well by now, but I'm still far from being bored with it. Instead, I'm trying to make new characters and build them better than the last ones.

At any rate, I hope you'll share your thoughts & opinions on this. Beyond being fun for me to play, the goal is for all of you to enjoy it as well. I personally think NWN is much more fun to play than ROM2. And the Rhun module itself does a very good job of capturing all of the most enduring features of ROM2 but does so on a MUCH more flexible gaming platform. In my mind, NWN is the natural successor to ROM2.

Keep playing and keep sharing your suggestions.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 13-Nov-08, 03:20:34
--- begin: original message from NOVA (so it stays visible) ---

OK, it looks like the bastards at my ISP changed my IP address some time during the day today (while I was at work). I've had to reset the server on a different IP address.

The new IP is:

173.23.96.226


Sorry for the inconvenience. Please address all flame mail to my internet provider.

-NOVA

--- end: original message from NOVA (so it stays visible) ---





Behold my finest work :-)

"Scry Hostile"

Originally this was a modified version of "Legend Lore".
Then I noticed that Legend Lore is much inferior to "Identify".
Unbelievable but true.

Identify gives you max +50 to Lore (a 1st level spell).
Legend Lore gives you max +30 to Lore (a 6th level spell).

The two spells can not stack. So there is never a point in using Legend Lore.
I trashed it totally.

Now it is: Scry Hostile.

A single targeted hostile creature becomes subject of scrying from the caster.
If the creature fails a spell resistance check, she is pushed into a battle of Will against the caster.
This is shown as a "Will Save vs. Scrys", and the DC to save against is given by the caster Will + a d20 roll.

If the creature loses the battle of Will, her "vitals" are scanned:
-- HD
-- current HP
-- maximum HP
-- AC
-- Fortitude
-- Reflex
-- Will
-- Spell Resistance

Each of them (in that order) becomes available at every 5 caster levels. So you get to see Spell Resistance only at level 40.
Not a problem. If creature has too high SR, you can never scry her.
If you scry her easily, then her SR must be lower than your Spell Penetration.

Chances of success for scanning each vital start from a base of 25%.
You then add 1% for every 2 caster levels.
You then add 1% for every 5 points in caster Lore skill.
Not base Lore, but total Lore. So the more boosts you have to it, the better.

"Scry Monster" belongs to the "Divination" spell school.
For each Spell Focus feat in Divination, caster gains an additional +10% chance of success at scanning a vital.

Revealing all 8 vitals in a single attempt is rare (regardless of your level), unless you have at least 2 of the 3 Spell Focus feats said above.
Only "Will" is always revealed, because you see it already during the battle of Will. It would be silly to hide it moments later :-)

Valid targets are only those creatures that are hostile to the caster and the caster is in turn hostile to them (hostility is a two-way thing).
This is a safety measure thought for multiplayer, so that a malicious mage can not sudden turn hostile to another player and scry him to see his weakness.
If the other player does not turn hostile too, the spell will target him and always fail.

Scrying a creature is considered a hostile action and will remove any invisibility status the caster may have.
You attempt a scry, you pop visible the moment you cast.

A successfully scried creature is illuminated for 1 round with a yellow-white aura, so everyone can instantly spot her in the mess.

Every PC in the same area of caster sees the attempt of scrying in their console.
And if the scrying succeeds, every PC in the area is told so in their console: CasterUhn scries CreatureWtf

But the actual results of the scrying are only shared to the members in the caster party.
Neutrals and Hostiles will not read those informations.


-fox


--------------------------------------------------
HOVA,

if you would like to see these modifications on your 1.68 NWN, just say so.
Maybe you like them.
If yes, I need a few 1.68 files from your NWN, so I can adapt my changes to not collide with the patch you have.

In NWN folder you have a "2dasource.zip" file.
From that zip I need:
-- appearence.2da
-- feats.2da
-- iprp_onhitspell.2da
-- spells.2da
-- visualeffects.2da

I also need one script for extra safety:
-- x2_inc_spellhook.nss

fast way to extract that script is to create a new empty 1-area module (use the module wizard), so that you can open the script editor.
Then in script editor open the "x2_inc_spellhook" (select the filter "all resources" or you can not see it).
Then use the Save As button to make a copy of it, and get it from temp0.
Send all to foxy e-mail

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 12-Nov-08, 01:28:36
OK, it looks like the bastards at my ISP changed my IP address some time during the day today (while I was at work). I've had to reset the server on a different IP address.

The new IP is:

173.23.96.226


Sorry for the inconvenience. Please address all flame mail to my internet provider.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 11-Nov-08, 03:29:14
I have rewritten the spell "Weird".
Now it is more serious. As should be all 9th level spells.

Creatures with up to 4 HD (+1 every 5 caster levels past 20) are instantly slain without save.
Those above such HD amount have to make a Will save (VS Mind spells) or be slain instantly.
Those who succeed at the Will save still take trouble, as follows:
-- 3d6 points of Magical damage taken (+1d6 every 5 caster levels past 20)
-- Stunned for 1 round (6 seconds)
-- 1d4 Strength ability damage for 1 turn (60 seconds)

There is more...
It belongs to the "Illusion" spell school, so it benefits from Spell Focus feats.
With:
-- Spell Focus (Illusion), Magical damage taken is doubled.
-- Greater Spell Focus (Illusion), additional +1d4 Strength ability damage.
-- Epic Spell Focus (Illusion), Stun and ability damage durations are doubled.

One more. This is a personal touch :-)
The spell acts in the form of a terrorizing huge phantasmal figure.
So it is fair that it gets a +2 to DC when cast during nighttime! Haha.

Weird is a Mind-Affecting spell. So Immunity to Death Magic is ignored.
But Immunity to Mind-Affecting or Fear spells is taken into account.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 06-Nov-08, 01:38:21
NOVA,
speaking of content to import... have you looked at the PRC?
There is a new version (3.2) that works with patch 1.69.
Previous versions (like 3.1) works with patch 1.68.

See at this link:
http://nwvault.ign.com/View.php?view=hakpaks.Detail&id=4559

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 04-Nov-08, 04:06:05
--------------------------------------------------
Aldebaran,

If you try NWN I think you will like it to no end.
There are no maps. There are modules, made up of several areas to explore.
Characters are really complex to build, but easy to use.
The ability to customize your appearence is great.
You can change shape and colors of your clothes and armors and weapons...
Two different characters wearing different gear, may look exactly the same.
So unlike in Rom2 there is no sure way to guess people equipment basing it on visual clue.
This big customization level is what attracted me to the game.
If you add CEP (unofficial high quality content made from community) then the amount of customization you can make to your character rockets above the roof!
CEP does much more, of course. I am giving loose examples.
Give the game a try.

Of course you can log to any mmorpg and get lolled all time by little kids who barely understand what a keyboard is for, and do not listen to what you say, or just insist in making duels, and you say no and they insist, and they will not go away before insulting you and your dog and when they wirte somethin in chat theywrite all in one huge sentence without concept of punctuation capitalization properspacing or pay attetnio nto tyop like i doing now and p43ar my 1337 skillz lolollol!!!!1!1oneone

Haha :-)
I hate them. Wish I could launch a nuke sometimes.

-fox



--------------------------------------------------
NOVA,
My answers:

1. Keep it private for now, and improve it. In future you can always make it public.

2. I say, play short games until you see that you have implemented all the major changes.
This game is surprising flexible. It is hard to screw up characters unless you first add and then remove some core content like feats (who people may get), spells (who people may learn), extra stuff from CEP.
Scripting instead is harmless. Likely scripts are what you use the most to tweak a module, and fortunately scripts are the one thing that can never screw up a character.

3. I partially answered to this in number 2. Most changes to the game are done by script.
Those can be tweaked on the fly (poor flies...) without worry.
When you are satisfied, you make them permanent and move on.

4. CEP? Yes. I say include it. The sooner you do, the less painful the core changes will be.
In part this is thanks to the nature of CEP: content is there. You only need to make use of it.
Rhun is designed to run without CEP if you want. But I say CEP is needed.
I have recently made a reinstall of the game, and I have not included CEP 2.00.
Some characters are without head... it is disturbing to see :-S
And CEP allows for more personalization of your character too.
There is only one advice I give about CEP. With patch 1.68 you should stop at CEP 2.00
CEP 2.00 is not fully compatible with patch 1.69 (the usual 2DA issues after every patch).
So you need one of the newest CEPs for patch 1.69... but wait until you hear that all issues have been fixed.

5. Rhun runs fine with patch 1.69, if you do not use CEP 2.00.
Patch 1.69 is not bad. I actually like it.
And the features I dislike I can always modify :-)

6. I do not understand this question. Please re-phrase it.

7. New modules need some experience to build up good. It is true that non single player modules are quick to grow, though.
No storyline to wory about, no complex dialogs or role-playing...
You now know Rhun very good. I suggest to stick with it.
At least until you feel the scorching desire to make your own module from scratch.


Note that I say "you do", "you need", "I suggest"... But I do not mean "I propose and you concretize". Haha :-)
I can help with the work.
I am not very good at planning large scale stuff.
But I am good at making my part. I think.
You tell me if you need something, and I see how I can help.


A good start would be to have all the same patch, though.
Meaning that you should upgrade. Not because I do not want to downgrade.
But because eventually you will switch to 1.69.
Plus, Horses are a neat addition. No 1.69 = no horses.
I find the patch stable. On my WinXP it runs ok.
I just disabled Visual Themes to be sure the system does not steal too much memory the game could use.
The problem of the patch is really all in the 2DA files.
Every patch makes modification to those core files.
That is what breaks and bugs a module the most.
But BioWare official word is that patch 1.69 is their last. No more to expect.
So with 1.69 you have the definitive 2DA core, and it is one huge less worry if you plan to mod anything.

-fox
 
Author: Albadaran (simondekker [at] hotmai [dot] com)
Date: 04-Nov-08, 01:14:18
I'll take a look at NwN probably this weekend at my nephew's. However, IF I decide to play it won't be on die-hard super challenge maps since I'm only a noob lol!

And my priority lies with rom2. If its not even possible to get players online with weekly new rom2 maps and events, than why bother to setup other games? I can log on to any mmorpg and team up with tons of players around instantly and have lots of fun! The games here are fun, but if no one joins than why bother and make much effort for 1 or 2 causual gamers if there are so many ready made games with lots of people around? Yet I would like to continue rom2 as a hobby project to complete some mapsets. Nwn has to earn my attention yet, and it probably never will if the rom2 project fails...
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 03-Nov-08, 19:01:13
I note now that some of my typing got removed from that last post due to my ill-advised use of restricted punctuation. Hopefully it's still readable despite the missing text.

I also have several issues to add to my list. I have noted my gut reaction answer after each one:

4. Do we include the CEP or any other material __OR__ do we keep Rhun as a "no additional material required" module?
_______INCLUDE_______


5. Do we update Rhun to NWN 1.69 or keep it with 1.68?
_______UPGRADE________


6. Do we separate major additional world content to additional modules that can be used on a networked server ___OR___ do we insert the additional world content into one huge module?
_______INCLUDE IN ONE______


7. Do we upgrade Rhun ___OR___ do we start fresh with a completely new and original module?
______UPGRADE RHUN______


I'm curious to hear others' answers to these questions.

-NOVA
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 03-Nov-08, 18:27:04
I have BIG BIG plans for this custom version of Rhun. But right now I'm struggling with several major dilemmas. My biggest dilemmas right now are:

1. What is the target audience for this? In other words, do I plan for this finished Rhun module with all the alterations to be playable just on my tiny little private (invite only) server with very limited players do I plan for the final audience to be a much larger public server with lots and lots of players?

2. What is the style and duration of play intended? In other words, do I plan for short and quick play that is just fun for a short while much like the state of ROM2 right now do I plan for very slow character advancement where play will be extended over a very long time?

3. How to accomodate this "work in progress" where changes have to be made sequentially and "on the fly"? If a major feature of Rhun happens to change, how do I best re-balance those players already playing so they mesh with the new rule/feature? My server is up and running and has players already. This is partly just for the current enjoyment of those persons, partly for the inspiration which comes from actually playing, partly to allow for playtesting, and partly to lure more people who will thus speed the process of actually playtesting more of the world quicker. I want and need the advice, suggestions, expertise, and efforts of many people in order to make truly worthwhile alterations to this module. I certainly can't (at least don't want to) do this on my own. So it's going to be a work in progress that may have to occasionally be re-balanced (in other words I may have to actually remove stuff from the existing players on occasion).


Anyway.... The answers to those major questions above will guide the hundreds or thousands of smaller decisions that follow. I have to make a concrete decision on all of these before I can proceed with much of the heavy work of remaking the world. At the same time, I'm trying to recruit more players, but it's not easy since I prefer (for whatever reason) to work primarily with ex-ROM2 players whom I already know and with whom I already have at least some history. I could do this by recruiting NWN players from that community, but that just does not appeal to me. I view NWN as more a fulfillment of what ROM3 could/should have been. As such, it's my goal to transition ROM2 (and even ROM1) players into NWN as the next logical progression. For some reason, that just seems right to me. Hopefully other ROM2 players will see it the same way. Yes NWN is an old game (almost as old as ROM2) but it has SOOO much more potential than the Rage of Mages series of games.

Hopefully I'm not preaching to an empty room.

-NOVA


P.S. The time zone differences also pose a significant challenge. Except perhaps on weekends, I just don't see how those of us located on opposite sides of the globe can work together other than by the VERY slow process of exchanging simple messages. That's going to severely hamper this process, but I don't see any way around it.
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 03-Nov-08, 16:19:15
Hello NOVA.

I did download the spanish version but did not really look at it.
Sounds like it is made too easy.
Author says there is a new merchant in Trade District who sells Epic stuff. Is it true?

The up to date server version of Rhun I have never seen.
All I know is that they have planned and realized a lot of changes to the Rhun we know.
Those changes are not going to be public. Or people could host their own Rhun and steal players from the main server. Makes sense.

Speaking of CEP, the only reason I would use it would be to have access to more body parts for the customization of armors and weapons and clothing.
I really care about my characters look.



What about adding new content off our head?
You said you would like to explore the crafting system. That is a GREAT idea you had.
To alter the crafting system is not hard.
We have script commands to do anything to items.
What you need to do is to think about solid and consistent rules to regulate the whole mechanism.
When that is done, the scripting part is easy.

Some games (not NWN games) have taken crafting to an extent that you have almost no use for stores.
You find junk, turn it in base components (or break finished items back into base components), and then combine your components in several ways, until you obtain what you want.
Then you enchant it.
NWN is ready for all this.
What you need, as I said, are the rules to govern it.


At the moment I am concentrating on spells. I have fixed some bugs, adjusted some spell scroll descriptions, completely rewritten a couple spells and implemented the planar rift harful effect as a customizable plugin for easy attachment to those summon spells supposed to open a rift.

I have already rewritten Gate, as I described.
I have also rewritten Continual Flame: now you can choose White, Red, Green or Blue light (implemented as subradial choices), or you can remove a light source from any item.
Due to technical reasons, spells can only have 5 subradial choices (so I could not give all possible light colors).
Subradial feats are another story.


I have also modified Endure Elements, Resist Elements, Protection from Elements and Energy Buffer (Energy Buffer is completely rewritten).

Endure Elements absorbs 10/-- Acid, Cold, Fire, Electrical and Sonic, up to 20 damage total.
It last 3 turns per caster level.
Resist Elements absorbs 20/-- Acid, Cold, Fire, Electrical and Sonic, up to 30 damagae total.
It lasts 2 turns per caster level.
Protection from Elements absorbs 30/-- Acid, Cold, Fire, Electrical and Sonic, up to (3 * caster level) damage total (minimum absorbtion is 40)
It last 1 turn per caster level.
Energy Buffer now aborbs only 3/-- Magical damage. Up to (3 * caster level) damage total (minimum absorbtion is 27).
It lasts 1 turn per level.

Energy Buffer will not help against a Horrid Wilting (ton of Magical damage in 1 hit), but it will greatly reduce the Magical damage from volleys of Magic Missiles (including the 2 Isaac storms).

I have implemented the planar rifts harmful effect for those summons who open one such rift.
The rift is customizable, so you can choose what creatures will be affected by it, and what happens to them if they are caught in the rift.
Immunity to rifts is easy to give, both programmatically (via scripting) or directly from the toolset... so you can make your key bossess partially or totally immune to rifts.
The hardest part was to decide what special effects to apply in case the rift hits. Haha.
I have made by default that rifts are small. It is not so easy to be caugh in one.
To compensate, I have made so that the effects can be devastating to the creature that is too close.
But I am still not satisfied about it.
It looks cools, it works, etc... but I feel something is missing.


I have increased the damage of Epic Greater Ruin spell.
35d6 Positive Energy damage sounds like a lot.
But for some reason you always get a bad roll, and the final damage is around 100 points.
Greater Ruin is a one-shot one-target spell... not very useful at it is now.
So I have raised the damage to 40d6 Positive Energy, plus 40d6 Negative Energy.
It now deals much more damage, but you should not launch it at an undead... or you part damage it and part heal it.
Or maybe you heal it more than you damage it. Haha.

Epic Hellball is another useless spell.
10d6 Acid, Fire, Electrical and Sonic damage.
A Knockdown triggers for those creatures that suffer 50 or more points of damage.
(in fact you can Knockdown an Ancient Dragon easily with it)
With game difficulty above Normal, Hellball strikes the caster (if he does not flee!) with 10d6 Negative Energy damage.

I have chanched it.
Epic Hellball now inflicts 10d9 Acid, Fire, Cold, Electrical and Sonic damage (a potential of 450 damage VS the 240 of the standard version).
Knockdown threshold stays at 50 damage points suffered.
Still a one-shot colossal-area-of-effect spell.
At game difficulty above Normal, the caster suffers 10d9 Negative Energy damage if he does not flee. Sounds fair.

Hellball and Greater Ruin are supposed to be Epic destructive spells.
Make them look like it, I say!


I am slowly checking the various spells in the game, starting with those usable by arcane spellcasters (the ones I know better).
Tons of little bugs, tons of spell descriptions that do not match the actual spell behavior, tons of optimizing possible too.

Have you noticed that you can never obtain a +5 from an Empowered Bull Strength, Cat Grace, Endurance, or similar ability spells?
You either get +3, +4, +6, or +7. Those spells all do the same thing (to different abilities), and all possess the same exact bug.
Amusing is that they were clearly written by diffenret hands :-)

Bigbys Grasping Hand is near impossible to save against. A bug in it makes the save DC way too high.
The Summon Creature VII, VIII and IX spells can never spawn a Earth Elemental.

The list goes on...


I am thinking to add 2 completely new arcane spells: Magic Circle of Acceleration and Aura of Emcumberance (a pair of fancy names :-)
Embumberance or Emcumbrance? Which one is the correct spelling?

They would work like Magic Circle Against Alignment, and grant a temporary Haste (a true Haste) to allies, or Slow (an emcumbered state) to enemies that step and stay inside your circle.
I think their place should be with the 5th level spells.
Maybe the Slow version should be 6th level. I must think about it.


I could implement a Teleport spell, so that your character can instantly move to a location within his line of sight. But probably there would be problems with the trigger areas (the yellow things you see when in ##DebugMode 1).
And tactical usage in combat would be limited. You need time to chant and cast the spell.
Probably a bad idea...


What I would love to implement is the addition of NEW tiers of spells.
We have 9 tiers only. I would add 4 more, so that any Metamagic feats could be used on every spell.
At the moment the only way to apply metamagic to such high level spells is to get the epic Automatic metamagic feats.
I am afraid this is impossible. I read that the User Interface is fixed.
You can give it a new skin... but the hull below stays and works the same.

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 02-Nov-08, 17:57:46
I've had a brief look at the other two versions of Rhun released to the public:

1. The "spanish" one is identical to version 1.7 (the one I started with) except they:

a) added 7 areas which are all in spanish. These areas are chock full of treasure chests just lying all over the place. You enter these areas from Etum Rural...one of the unused houses.

b) they made the mage guild recall device purchasable from the Trades District street merchants. Why? I have no idea.

Basically it looks like they wanted to add some easy to reach areas where they could get a lot of easy loot. And it sounds like they favored mages (thus only the mage recall device is offered for SALE at a market place).


2. The Prime server version:

a) They updated this to CEP 2 so you must have that in order to use this version of Rhun. They make use of the added HAK packs etc.

b) they added 3 new playable areas. Haven't really checked them out much since the CEP 2 addition pretty much threw me off.



All in all, not really much more to be swiped and imported into my server (sadly). I was hoping to get at least a small amount of added content to use. Oh well.

-NOVA
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 01-Nov-08, 19:53:01
1. As to the Tanzantor Island Crystal, I wouldn't exactly call that a BUG because a bug implies an unintended flaw. The key being, "unintended". The intention of this device is to allow the players a method to force a reset of the server if enough of them vote to do so. It's not that the server CANNOT reset if less than 6 people are playing. It simply takes 6 players for a PLAYER INVOKED server reset. Frankly, considering this module was intended as a 24/7 PW, I think 6 is a rather SMALL number to require. Imagine if there were 100 players and any 6 of them could conspire to simply keep initiating a reset.

At any rate, I have noted your suggestion in my "Potential Changes Log" and will keep it open for evaluation.


2. I have now fully fixed the WereCat recall device. There was an item tag mis-match in the "werecat_recall" script. The script was checking for item tag "werecatrecall" but the actual recall device has item tag "rude_werecatrecall". This mismatch prevented the "YES" optional conversation from ever invoking. The mismatch has been corrected and I have verified that the recall mushroom now functions properly.


3. As to all of the City of Etum NPC quests, I have verified every single one of them functions properly except ONE. I have yet to determine which werewolf is supposed to posses the "Bag of Jewels". If I can figure out which one it's supposed to be, I will ensure they have the quest item. I would have simply put the Bag of Jewels on any unique monster, but I'm fearful of winding up with two of them (which would be dumb). Just because I haven't found the correct location of the Bag yet does not mean it's not already in there. If anyone can find the specific werewolf that either already has or is supposed to have the Bag, please let me know. This is the LAST Etum quest which I need to get functional (or at least verify that it functions).


4. I'm also open to suggestions for additional content (even if from other modules) that could/should be included within Rhun. If anyone has suggestions, please tell me. And where possible, please either email me the subject module, leave a hyper-link to where I can get it, or at least tell me the name of the module.


-Thanks,
-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 01-Nov-08, 16:12:43
Very nice work :-)

Improvements? Here is one:
On Tanzanator island there is the crystal to reset the world.
In the script it is hard-coded that you need 6 votes to use it.

So you need 6 players. If you do not have that many, no reset is ever possible.
This is a bug.



In regard to a previous post I made, talking about re-factoring the monsters in Rhun, I think that the amount of stats for a given monster should not exceed 100 (instead of 80 I proposed).
Rest is unchanched:
Min base stat = 8.
Max base stat = 40.

To raise a stat above 40 it is fair to assign the Epic Great xxx feats (Great Strength, Great Wisdom...)



In regard to spells, there is a change I would like to implement.
But I want to hear opinions first.

This idea comes from the Player Hand-Book of DnD.
Simply put: monsters sucked inside a planar rift see their body instantly destroyed.
This is explained as a physical effect, so there is no saving throw and no Immunity to death magic that can save you.
It is an absolute death.
Of course if you are not very close to the planar rift, you are safe.

I like it!
But it needs some tweak to not be spoiled by players.

Here is the idea:
If creature has size above Normal, it escapes instant destruction because her body is likely too big to fit in the rift.
But the rift is a sort of black hole, and pulls very hard. So some damage is taken.
The bigger the creature, the less the damage suffered.

For size Huge = damage equal to 1/5 the creature max health.
For size Big = damage equal to 1/4 the creature max health.
For size Normal = damage equal to 1/3 the creature health.
For size Small = instant death.
For size Tiny = instant death.

For size Big and Huge, a Reflex save is allowed for half damage.
Failed save means full damage, according to size modifier.

For size Normal, a Reflex save is allowed for full damage.
Failed save equals instant death.
Success save equals full damage (in this case 1/3 max health).

For size Small and Tiny, there is no Reflex save. Instant death always.

The planar rift makes no distinction: caster can kill himself if he is so fool to open a rift at his feets.

No Immunity can work against this, so it is possible to use it to kill a boss.
To fix the problem, the spell can be instructed to not apply instant death to specific creatures if they possess a particular value set on them (this can be given in the toolset).
Instead it is fair to deal damage to a boss if he fails the Reflex save.


Spells who open a planar rift are:
-- Planar Binding (used in Summon mode)
-- Greater Planar Binding (used in Summon mode)
-- Summon Creature VII
-- Summon Creature VIII
-- Summon Creature IX
-- Gate
-- Black Blade of Disaster
-- Elemental Swarm

And likely a few more spells who call extra-planar beings (the Outsiders) such as elementals, imps, fiends, celestial, etc...
I do not remember them all.
Black Blade of Disaster is an exception. It does not summon an Outsider (the sword is a Construct), but it does open a planar rift. So that counts too.

What do you think?

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 01-Nov-08, 00:01:35
Ok, here are the updates I've made so far to Rhun (as it's running on my server):

1. Rest is restricted to only once every 5 game hours 15 minutes real time).

2. Excess XP you gain past being eligible for gaining a level are no longer lost when you actually level up.

3. The magical Telescope of Seeing now is on the ground (it used to be floating about 20 feet in mid air).

4. The Werecat recall item quest is now fixed so ONLY a member of the werecat sub-race can complete the quest. Howver, the Magical Mushroom that allows use of this recall device is not functioning properly. It only offers the NO option when asking you if you wish to return to the last location where you used the mushroom spore. Will need to fix that still.

5. The Thief in the South Dugan Plains now drops the Bag of Gold (quest item needed to claim reward from NPC in Etum).

6. A Magical Forge is now included in the Ancient City of Taer. Here you can customize magical items (weapons, armor, etc). The prices are quite high (6-12 times the finished item price in the stores) but that's the premium you pay in order to get literally ANY item possible to make. And it still requires that you have access to the Ancient City (which is one of the world's Epic Quests). The Forge building is right across from the exit door from the Epic shop. As a bit of humor, the smiths operating the magical forge are all named after The Three Stooges (Moe, Larry, Curley, Shemp, Joe). You can also remove magical properties from items. This is a good way to remove unwanted powers from the item and thus lower the character level required to use it. There is a cost for removal but it is minimal.


Don't forget to report any game bugs or improvements you think would make Rhun a better place to play.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 30-Oct-08, 15:04:21
Hello NOVA.

Rhun encouraged me to undertake the quest of modifying the standard-game spells.
I already knew that most of them are affected by bugs, but the amount of problems I have seen is, by far, greater than you would think.

I knew some NWN modding already.
Plus, I know C++ language. So it is easy for me to "think" like NWN script does.

My first subject for spells is a remake of the Gate summon.
If you have seen Gate in action, you will agree that the Balor is nothing spectacular.

I have changed things. Deeply, but without exagerating :-)


Balor spawned from original Gate:
-- Class: Outsider (20)
-- AC: 35
-- HP: 139 (or similar, I do not remember now)
-- STR: 26
-- DEX: 13
-- CON: 20
-- INT: 20
-- WIS: 20
-- CHA: 16
-- Spell Resistancxe: 28
-- limited saving throws
-- limited attack rating
-- average feats
-- good equipment
-- few spells

Friendly Balor will last for the duration of the spell.
Foe Balor will last 1 minute only.



Balor spawned from my Gate:
-- Class: copy caster level, ranges from Outsider (17) to Outsider (40)
-- AC: based on Balor level, ranges from 29 to 40
-- HP: based on Balor level, ranges from 170 to 400
-- STR: based on Balor level, ranges from 22 to 28
-- DEX 13
-- CON 20
-- INT 20
-- WIS 20
-- CHA 16
-- Spell Resistance: based on Balor level, ranges from 10 to 32
-- Saving throws improve with Balor level
-- Attack rating improves with Balor level (and his STR too)
-- feats change according to Balor type.
-- Equipment (and enhancements on it) change according to Balor type.
-- number of spells change according to Balor type.

Friendly Balor will last for the duration of the spell.
Foe Balor will last 1 minute only.



The 3 types of Balor I provide are based on caster level:
From caster level 1 to 25, a Summoned Balor will appear.
From caster level 26 to 35, a Summoned Greater Balor will appear.
From caster level 36 to 40, a Summoned Balor Lord will appear.

Minimum Balor level is Outsider (17), even if the caster level is 1.
I choose this behavior because Gate is a 9th level spell, which require a caster level of 17 to learn.
But a level 1 mage could use a scroll to get the summon. But an Outsider (1) Balor would be little more than a weresheep without teeth. So at least I provide an Outsider (17) (which is 3 levels below the standard BioWare Balor).

Caster level means Caster, and not Character.
So if your character is Fighter (39), Wizard (1), you get a low level Balor anyway.
In this way only true high level mages will get the best Balors.
Makes things fair :-)
Same rule applies to NPC.
But scripts can detect if a spell is being cast by a PC or an NPC, and so apply different rules (if needed).


My Balor is limited from level 17 to level 40.
If cast by an NPC above level 40, a level 40 Balor Lord still appear.

My Balor is tough. If you forget your protection before casting it, it may kill you.
You can always run away for 1 minute. Balor will disappear.
Or you can quickly cast a protection on yourself and open a second Gate.
You would have two twin Balors pitted against each other.
Of course if the foe Balor dies, you get the XP for it (standard BioWare behavior).
But it is unlikely that one Balor will beat the other one.
Matter of time: after 1 minute the foe Balor goes away, defeated or not.

As the caster level improves, the Balor gets better.
A level 40 Balor Lord is very dangerous, though not invincible.
It may sound like an over powered summon, but you have to consider that he can last 4 minutes at best.

To compensate for their increasingly good melee skills and feats (which are comparable to those of a good Fighter), Balors of higher levels do receive more spells to cast.
So they will spend more time in casting spells, instead of getting immediately busy in melee with your foes.
Foes may survive the spells and laugh... but once a Balor Lord (40) get close and personal, it is no more a laughing matter :-)
All spells are fixed at level 15. They are dangerous, but not so difficult to evade.

Instead balors tend to have high saving throws, even with no aid from the editor.
Those saves are perfectly legal, and benefit from the Spellcraft skill (+5 Spellcraft = +1 Universal save) as per standard behavior.

Like all summons, a Balor can be Dismissed or Banished (there is a spell to do that) or forced to unsummon by hurling a dispeller at the master of the Balor (the mage who opened the Gate).
So there are easy ways to defeat it, despite his power.



I am surprised at the amount of bugs found in the original BioWare scripts.
They are so many and so incredible that I do not know where to start and list them without going in cirlces.
One of the original Balor script AI is truly a big bug from begin to end.
It is so bugged that no instruction in it will carry out properly and produce any effect.
Imagine that...
Of course I have fixed all the bugs in my Gate remake.
But take my word: original scripts are infested with bugs, to such an extend that you wonder if you are looking at the same scripts that do move NWN.

If you want a demonstration of my Gate spell, tell me, and I will send you a .HAK file for easy plugin.

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 28-Oct-08, 06:50:33
This turns out to be a rather simple oversight by the Rhun modders. And the same problem exists (most likely) for ALL of the subraces.

The problem resides in the conversation with the werecat leader. Conditional check scripts are executed before each branch of the conversation is sent to the player. For instance, if the player is not a werecat, then they are not given the details of the werecat recall item quest. However, the branch which allows the player to actually exchange the quest item for the reward (aka the recall device) ONLY checks if the player has the item in their inventory. We simply need to perform BOTH checks in a nested IF statement and only execute the reward conversation if BOTH conditions are true: they have the quest item AND they are part of the werecat sub-race.

That will fix it so only members of that subrace can comlpete the recall device quest. Now we just need to make sure all of these recall devices are set to undroppable so no one can subsequently share them around to other characters and we're all set. And of course duplicate the script changes for all of the other sub-races.

Piece of cake.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Oct-08, 21:18:22
Great minds think a like.
Plus I am flawless too.


I report a bug with an item.
In Elwinar Valley there is the Werecats village.

If you are subrace Werecat, the Werecat chief has a quest for you, so you win prize in return.
The prize is a teleport device for quick return to the village.
Much like the many Etum guilds teleport devices.

If you are not Werecat the chief will not propose you the quest.
But if you find the quest item anyway (a Spore from a near area, filled with Gnolls) and bring it to the Chief, he will consider the quest complete, and gift you the device.

The device is Cursed: can not be dropped.
And can be used by humans only.

Fix it before your guests get glued to it by accident :-)

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 27-Oct-08, 20:48:40
We seem to be working in parallel paths. I already downloaded the lexicon on Saturday. I also found an excellent web-based hyper-link guide to the World of Rhun. I mirrored the enitre site to my hdd (about 23 meg of files). It's technically for a slightly customized version of Rhun, but most of it will still be accurate. I'm contemplating how best to use it.

And I will check my email as soon as I get home. In the mean time, I have implemented the permanent fix. I also got the forge working. It's up and running on the server already. I'm going to have to alter the forge parameters a bit I'm sure, but that will require some serious playtesting to know precisely how. Shame I don't have a second computer on which I could test all the Rhun modifications.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Oct-08, 19:38:15
NOVA, check kingkota e-mail.
I sent the solution for the override problem :-)

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Oct-08, 16:22:34
During research I have stumbled on this:
http://nwvault.ign.com/View.php?view=Other.Detail&id=1340

I believe you will find it useful. It is a download for the NWN Lexicon community-project.
This version is updated for patch 1.68
1.69 version is under construction.

Lexicon is a reference guide for all scripting commands of NWN.
It can help you understand what a script function does and when you may want to call it for doing what.

Rhun was made prior to patch 1.69.
So this Lexicon should contain a clean reference for all the standard-game scripting functions you find in Rhun.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 27-Oct-08, 15:37:53
I make an update for the rare bug I spoke of.
The bug triggers in case the module possesses more than 16000 resources.

Rhun is huge, but it is below the limit with less than 9000 resources (count the files in your temp0).
So the override problem must be caused by something else.
I apologize because I do not have an explanation ready.

But I am investigating it.
Meanwhile use permanent modifications. They always work.



In reagrd to the forge, it is normal to have some problem when you apply a thing made by others to a thing made by others.
Do not be sorry, it is not your fault.
Errors can be fixed. They exist for that :-)

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 27-Oct-08, 08:29:56
The answer is YES to all of the questions. I chose the override method because that would allow me to have the fix applied to every verion or copy of Rhun that I would choose to run and I wouldn't have to make sure I had applied every script change permanently to each one (such as to working test copies where I can test out future modifications etc). Sadly, it looks like I'm going to have to apply the permanent patch for now and keep track of which patches I've applied permanently to which copies of the module.

It hasn't been my weekend for NWN or Rhun it appears. I also tried to insert a magical forge to a copy of Rhun. Everything went fine in the Toolset. I followed the forge maker's instructions to the letter...it was pretty straight forward and easy....and all appeared to go as intended. The resultant module is corrupted however and crashes the standalone server program when you try to load the module. Ironically, while rebuilding the modified module, I discovered there are 39 existing errors within the original module (I've checked the original unedited version and they are all there). Most of them are missing .wav files for sounds or missing conversations or missing scripts for random traps. Nothing that apparently causes the module not to run though.

How's that for comedy?


BTW....I'm going to attempt to organize a "Rhun 2.0 Team". Anyone interested in taking part, please let me know. The essential goal of the team will be to upgrade the Rhun v17 module into a much better much more balanced module that can be used on servers with only a few players. So far the "team" consists of a whopping two members: ME and Atton.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 26-Oct-08, 23:37:12
I am sorry to hear it.
(in a hurry for a fix? jump to the last 2 lines of this post)



A flaw from me is heresy. DO feel guilty because the thought crossed your mind!
Rules are rules. A rule says that I am flawless. So sayeth the Fox.

I confess I did not tell every detail in my already long e-mail.

There is THE rare bug that can happen when a module is of big size.
The bug has to do with the number of resources in the module.
Unexpected behaviors have been observed by modders when a module is very big.
Persistent worlds are always big.

Maybe NWN game is failing to notice that an override resource should be used in place of one of the thousands of Rhun resources?
I do not know.

The truth is: I do not recall of reading of modders who used overrides for their persistent worlds.
Now I am thinking that there must be a reason if they apply permanent changes (at least they never said they applied overrides).

I am forced to ask you the ritual stupid questions:

1) Did you restart the module after you placed the script in the override?
If yes,
2) Did you put the compiled script, and not the source, in the override?
If yes,
3) Did you copy the file without renaming it?
If yes,
4) Did you modify the script correctly in the first place?
If yes,
5) Inside your NWN.INI file do you have this exact line: [b]OVERRIDE=.\override[/b] ?

If yes,
everything is in order. And should not fail. But it does.

You may repeat the override thing, but it could fail again.

So if you do not want to waste more time, use the other way: modify the script permanently.
This can not fail, be assured. I myself am doing so for my Rhun copy.

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 26-Oct-08, 15:32:28
Ok, slight problem. I tested getting way more XP than needed to level up, but I STILL lost XP. I followed the directions for option #2 and have the rhun_on_plvlup.ncs file in the OVERRIDE folder and also restarted the server. Now, did I mess up somewhere along the lines or is there a flaw in your directions??

I'll keep trying.

-NOVA
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 26-Oct-08, 03:07:04
1. OK, I have removed the loss of excess XP when you level. Thank you Gray Fox for the VERY detailed instructions on how to do that.

2. I'm definitely in agreement that the monsters need a major overhaul, but this is going to be just that....a MAJOR task to overhaul. I still want to do it, but I'd like to tackle some easier and quicker things first.

3. As to the Obelisk Runes, I'm torn on that one. On the one hand it would be nice to prevent high level characters from just handing these things out, but I don't want to do it in a way that people who legitimately get the items can't use them right away. Truth is, yes you may have the runes, but they don't really do you a whole lot of good unless you can defeat the monsters around the Obelisks. So for now, I think I'm going to leave the Obelisk Runes as they are.

One other option would have been to make the runes undroppable so that only the character that actually got the rune from the Obelisk has it. But there is a way around this too since the hobby horse creates a gateway that anyone can use. High level characters just keep making gateways to the obelisks and low level characters can then grab the runes themselves. The one big advantage to handling it this way is that only characters able to use the hobby horse can be Santa Claus (I think it takes level 16 or higher to use the hobby horse). For now, I'll leave thse runes as they are....but I'm open to hearing other people's opinions and suggestions.

4. As to the character saving routine, I was already using a different OnRest script, so no characters are saved on resting. I'm going to leave the 10 minute auto character save because this is a good protection against server crashes. At least the most effort you can lose is 10 minutes worth. And with so few players, frequent character saves is not a drain on the CPU and does not produce any noticable lag on the server.

5. I am however, tempted to employ undroppable to the commaradarie stones. Though I'm torn on this decision too. On the one hand, it's nice to be able to teleport instantly to your friends when there are so few players. But on the other hand, this was meant as a reward item for making it to such a dangerous place (where the stones are to be found).

6. I'm also considering making it much harder to find endless streams of heal potions though I'm not sure what the best way to do this is. Again with so few players compared to what the module was designed to accomodate, you need some additional healing because the monsters are tough and you don't have any healers in your party. But come on, everybody sells endless supplies of the things. It's like ROM2 for crying out loud.

7. I'd also like to change the Epic shop in Ancient Taer so you can't just buy Epic gear with boat loads of gold. This really really cheapens the accomplishment of having (getting) Epic level gear. Not sure what the best way to do this is yet....but I'm open to suggestions.

That's it for now.....keep posting. And keep playing.

-NOVA
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 26-Oct-08, 02:07:37
Hello.
I have spent some time to look at Rhun monsters of many areas, both regulars and bosses.

I notice that all too often they feature stats and levels that are beyond reason.
I could make a list, but I would tell nothing that you do not know already.
So I jump to the point.

Do we really want to make things fair for everyone, and still have a challenging module?
If yes, we have to do a massive re-factoring of nearly all monsters.
If we proceed with method, this can be done faster than it sounds. No kidding.

Fisrt of all, we must realize that this module was meant to be played by dozens of people together. We have not dozens.
Some areas were even thought to be visited by packs of godly characters, equipped with all flashy gear, and played by capable players who know how to build a character.
We do not have these numbers.
So the current Rhun is above this pool of players.

Then we must find an agreement and set some Iron Rules about what MAX stats a monster can possess, be it regular or big boss monster.

After much considerations I have concluded that it is possible to lower the monsters powers in a fair way, and keep them challenging to anyone.
Here I will cover the principal aspects of a monster:

-- Max level of monster = 40
Meaning from 1 to 3 classes, any type, but the sum of class levels must not exceed 40.


-- Max monster stats sum = 80
Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom and Charisma. The sum of their BASE values must not exceed 80.
Minimum stat value allowed is 8.
Maximum stat value is 40 (but then the other five stats are all set to 8).


-- Max Saving Throws aid given by editor = 30.
Fortitude + Reflex + Will bonuses must not exceed 30.
Minimum bonus is 0.
Maximum bonus is 15

In most cases a bonus of +15 gives a near immunity to all spells counterable by that saving throw.
This value 30 is not accounting for the BASE saving throws derived from the 3 stats: Constitution (Fortitude), Dexterity (Reflex), and Wisdom (Will).
By adjusting these 3 stats and splitting the throws bonus it is possible to build a monster very strong versus many, but not all, spells.
Just try to be consistent.
Melee warriors usually possess a weak Will and a strong Fortitude.
Spellcasters instead are the opposite.

Rogues or monsters who rely on Dexterity (or give the idea of being agile creatures) should possess strong Reflex.
If they are primarily warriors, then their Fortitude is average and their Will is weak.
If they are primarily casters, then their Fortitude is weak and their Will is average.

The monster type should also give away what kind of stats he should possess.
A Spectre with strength 50 is an insult to intelligence. Can a spectre have muscles? No!
Give him low strength and constitution, and increase his dexterity and the other stats.
An Orc warrior should have high Strength. Average Constitution. Average Dexterity. Low Intelligence, Wisdom, and nearly no Charisma.
A Giant should have crushing Strength, high Constitution. Low Dexterity, almost no Intelligence. Low Wisdom and no Charisma.
Instead I see ugly monsters that could win Miss Universe title, or even walk with more grace than a cat...


-- Max attack rating given by equipment = +19
This is an absolute must: +19 and not +20.
Otherwise spellcasters can find no sanctuary and get vanquished in little time, because they have little life and no working protection (other than fleeing in tears).
There is only 1 spell in the game that can beat an attack rating of +19, and it is Epic Warding, which is an Epic Spell that requires a Spellcraft level of 32 (not to mention that needs Epic levels).
So getting Epic Warding is not a joke.
Also, the spell is one-shot only and has max duration of 4 minutes at character level 40.
There is no way to prolong its duration, or augent its protection, or to cast it again without resting.
And it is a caster-only spell. You cast Ward on your self only. Nobody can give you his Ward to protect you.
You understand that having Epic Warding and no monster that can pierce it, is far from complete impunity.
But at least a mage can make a battle plan of sort, and does not get whooped left and right no pause.


-- Max life bonus on monsters = very high, but set it with care.
If the monster can be harmed easily, his life pool can be great.
Just avoid insane values like 2500 or more.
Consider that the most powerful spell can inflict no more than 240 damage points.
Consider that a VERY good Wizard can load only 14 such spells, 7 of which are cheap to avoid (Reflex save for half or no damage).

A monster with 500 HP wants minimum 2 elite spells to die (assuming they hit hard), plus 1 more to finish the work.

With 1000 HP is a problem.
And you should rest after that. Or meet another one = meet your maker.

With 1500 is a serious problem. The wise man would rest.
With 2000 is a huge problem! Rest? If you survive...
With 2500 is quit + uninstall.
With 3000 is I rip your spine.


-- Max Natural Armor boosting = 20
I have seen Natural AC boost of over 30.
Those, coupled with insane dexterity bonus created ACs of 60 and above.
To pass an AC of 60 you need lot of attack rating and an almost Epic weapon.
To pass it consistenly you need to be a Fighter or similar combat affine class.
Second rate attackers (bab 3/4) can reach an attack of +25.
It becomes +30 if they take specific combat feats.
And then they need a great weapon if they want to score a hit once in a while.
Spellcasters are helpless. BAB 2/4... so sad.

I would make sure that the total AC of a boss does not exceed 55.
Big bosses can last more by giving them increased life pool, life regeneration, or even potions of Heal (or Heal/Mass Heal spells).
There are many ways to make a boss nasty, even if a Fighter can hit him easily.


-- Challenge Rating adjustments = none.
The editor can calculate the true Challenge Rating by looking at the monster final stats.
If you make these stats consistent, the calculated CR does match the real threat level closely.
So leave the CR alone. When a player sees a Impossible monster, he knows to stay away from it, or risk his neck trying.
Hopefully he get a fair XP/treasure reward for it, because Rhun bases it on CR.


-- Treasure class of the monster...
This is hard to decide. I see many terrible monsters are set to drop junk!
They should drop treasures instead, so the player is encouraged to risk his neck more often.
But then the current Rhun puts terrible monsters a bit of everywhere.
If you get treasure for all of them, the thing becomes too easy.
This is another reason why the monsters have to be re-factored.


-- Feats.
I would put no limit to feats.
In this way a monster can have acceptable stats and still be a very difficult fight.
The one feat type I would limit is the Uncanny Dodge series.
Those feats greatly enhance the saving throws versus spells, allowing a monster to take NO damage where normally a HALF damage would apply.
If Uncanny Dodge is given too lightly, monsters return to be anti-mage.
Never forget that swords have infinite shots, but spells are finite and precious.


-- Spells. What spells.
I would give monsters the chance to load any spell, but compatible with their caster class.
If a level 40 monster has only 5 levels in a caster class, it is abnormal for him to cast spells above 3rd level. Instead he probably has like 35 levels in a warrior class, and so he has the means to rip your spine if you let him close.


-- Spells. How many per level.
A good measure could be the number of spells per level that a level 40 Sorcerer with maximized Charisma can load.
How much is maximized Charisma?
Start with 18. It is the maximum starting base Charisma you can have at character creation.
Add +8. These are the ability points you gain in 40 level ups.
Add +12. This is the Charisma points limit you can benefit from equipped items.
Add +10. These would all the Great Charima feats a character can take.
Total Charisma = 48.
See how many spells per level a Sorcerer with 48 Charisma can load :-)
It is a fair amount, and can serve well any kind of monster, even if they have low level spells.


-- Skill scores.
Skill scores are hardly a problem. Monsters have little use for skills.
Taunt, Discipline, Spellcraft and Tumble can make some difference though.
But do not set them to crazy levels like 99 (I saw some!). Keep them within reason.


So this is my proposal for scaling the monster abilities and keep them challenging and defeatable for every class.
What do you think?

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 25-Oct-08, 21:31:47
Another idea for the obelisk stones, and such...
Why not reuse the character level restriction system of Rhun?
If for each stone we set a character level requirement, then low level characters are free to receive them, but can not use them until they reach a certain level.
Meanwhile the stones use up their inventory space.

-fox
 
Author: the.gray.fox (the [dot] gray [dot] fox [at] hotmail [dot] com)
Date: 25-Oct-08, 16:22:13
Hello NOVA.
I will send to kingkota e-mail the script file to remove the XP loss on level up, along with easy description of how to apply this patch by yourself.

Lol I did not know of potions for undeads :-)
Good to know for the future.

The character export is currently hard coded inside 3 different scripts of Rhun.
I explain better in my mail.

Not only the mages are screwed in Rhun. I have found that the Druid/Shifter type is also powerless in front of Matrons. Even if he get the mighty Dragon Shape and morph into a true Adult Dragon, with breath weapon and all.
Druids are also spellcasters as main job, and they get screwed twice.

Most Challenge Ratings are modified with the editor.
Mountain Orcs for example. Their real challenge rating would be like 48.
But it is considerably lowered by -24, or something.

Yes the quick respawn is a problem.
Default setting is 120 seconds (like rom2, haha).
A level 40 character needs 30 seconds for a full rest.
32 or more if you add the time a player requires to notice that it is good time to rest.
This leaves an acceptable window of safe rest for melee warriors.
But a spellcaster must rest to recharge, or even change his loaded spells.
Rearranging the spellbook consumes precious seconds.
A respawn time of 2 minutes when area is dangerous becomes too quick for spellcasters.
They risk to be caught unprepared by a respawning pack.

Items are made undroppable by setting their "Cursed" property.
Cursed items behave like the Relic of the Reaper.
Cursed items refuse to enter a bag. If you have many of them (like the 9 obelisk stones) they take much space in main inventory.
If you make them cursed, you may want to shrink their inventory size to 1x1.

For a new punishment measure, I would make characters lose all gold, plus 1 or more character levels.
The items are safe, but the loss is dear anyway.

Yes the problem with shops is bad. I know of no solution to it :-(
A script could be scheduled to run every X game-days, and clear all shops of the acquired stuff, maybe.

The character level limit is very hard to crack.
I have no idea where to start for that.
There would be a problem with spells, however. Most spells have a cap in power that coincides with specific levels.
Even if a character can exceed level 40, spells would stay the same.
And you can not change the spells. If you do, it is trouble from all the over-40 monsters who cast those spells to you.

Quests I could not complete are two:
B. Bag of Gold from Bandit in South Dugan Plains (bag where???).
C. Bag of Jewels from Werewolves in Sadoor Woods (bag where???).
All other Etum quests are possible to complete.

Tiger hide is from a Tiger out of the way in a corner.
Potion of Water Breathing is not carried by monsters, but hidden in one of the vase containers.

For the Epic Forge (I take your word for it) I think it is best to reduce the challenge of the monsters in there, so you do not need a platoon of gods to get to it.
Are you talking of Owidd mountain, by chance? Tell me you are not...

-fox
 
Author: NOVA (KINGKOTA666 [at] HOTMAIL [dot] COM)
Date: 24-Oct-08, 23:23:37
I'll start this thread out with a brief list of items I'd personally like to see "fixed". In some cases these items are specific, in some cases they are very generalized. I hope to narrow each and every one of them down to a very detailed description of the problem (symptom) and a workable solution.

1. Several quests do not appear to work properly. Those identified so far are (in Etum):
A. Potion of water breathing from Temple of Zu
B. Bag of Gold from Bandit in South Dugan Plains
C. Bag of Jewels from Werewolves in Sadoor Woods
D. Bear Skull from Nebir Woods
E. Tiger Hide from Thryndir Jungle

2. Some monster groups spawn WAY too soon. This creates too much of a "farming" region and discourages exploration (plus it's just non-believable). Need to lengthen their respawn times. (need list of encounters for consideration)

3. The Challenge Rating (CR) of many encounters seems to be calculated improperly. This leads to false information to the players plus it skews the random treasure you get. (need list of affected encounters)

4. Over time, the merchants fill up with lots of stuff. Not only is this a nuissance, but when the shop is very full it lags the server. So far I have simply manually cleaned the shops when the lag get's very bad. I'm open to alternate solutions.

5. Would like to incorporate decent CRAFTING rules, but unsure which ones are best or even worth the effort. Open to suggestions on this. Crafting seems like such an open and untapped avenue for game variation (at least for NWN 1).

6. Would like to raise the character level limit above 40. The Higher Ground system mimics this by continuing the skills and feats up to level 60, but actual character level remains stuck at 40 AND character "levels" beyond 40 are permanent and cannot be undone by removing XP from the character. Open to suggestions on this.

7. Would like to incorporate a (or several) custom magical FORGES where items could be made to order (for a hefty price). The Legend of the Mystical Forge may have a workable forge, but have not tested it. There may also already be an EPIC FORGE in the Druergar area (though this area is currently reachable only by HUGE parties of level 40 characters working together). Open to suggestions on this one.

8. Would like to include one or more gambling halls where players could try their hand at gambling for monetary gain (such as blackjack or poker). Open to suggestions on this one.

9. Considered incorporating Player Persistant Housing. But with so few players, the same workable effect can be had by simply using MULE characters to hold your spare money/items. This also functions as a work around to prevent gold loss on death. This may be a good argument for elimiating (or at least minimizing) the gold loss death penalty.

10. The punishment for crimes in Etum is jail time and totally stripped of all gold and all items (get sold at the street merchants in Trades District). This sounds a bit harsh (especially for high level characters) and should be altered....but to what?

11. Would like to alter the Vampire Appearance Controller so that vampires can freely travel in all areas while in human form. They will still take damage from the direct sunlight, but if they can withstand the damage, they should be able to walk around in public while in human form.

12. Considering making some items undroppable (such as Comaradarie Stones, the Hobby Horse, and the Obelisk Runes) because high level characters can just get these and pass them out to noob characters. Not sure I like either extreme, but am open to suggestions on some compromise solution(s).


That's my opening salvo for a list. Please add your own or comment on those I listed.

-NOVA
 
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