Neverwinter Nights 1 Impressions

This is a game in which stories really are entirely in the hands of the users.
I played in a user created persistent world for 8 hours straight last night.
Also my first time playing um, a virtual world for more than 1 hour or 2 without getting bored.

Here’s what I experienced:

User created narrative:
Lots of NPCs placed around the world with story -relevant quests and histories.
Long term story unraveling placed around the world in terms of unlockable paths
(once you’ve, then you can get deeper in the long term story, if you ever do.)
Live event / story creation by DMs when they are present.

User created game rules:
In three ways,
World creation – positioning of terrain and monsters and npcs and whatever essentially was responsible for the larger modes gameplay you’d end up in. Let’s say my basic gameplay was strategic corpse finding and resurrection…. That is, the world was hard.

Item creation – A number of items are provided at the beginning of the world, and this equips you with new rules for interaction with the world. Basically a lot of these were emote- based…. But there were things like the cloak of teleportation (which moved just a little bit through walls, which totally changed how I looked at the world and what my possible interactions with it were. I was always looking for places with sort of thin walls or gaps so that I could teleport through them.) AND MORE!

Explicit rule creation:
When I logged into the server, there was a tablet of official game rules the DM had scripted into the game. There you go.

The interplay between the user game rules and the user narrative was also user directed:
Unlockable Items played a part in the narrative of the gameplay, like metroid. Certain quests provided items that provided new interactions with the world that allowed you to get to quests which were unavailable. Or a giant dragon that temporarily allowed me to get through places with really tough enemies…

Overall, a fucking amazing experience. Definitely the best user-created content virtual world I’ve seen, and chock full of actual gameplay. Boo second life. And don’t use GAME MAKER anymore, BOB!

My final impression then is that the next level for these splintering virtual worlds within the larger virtual world (NWN) is to develop the relationships between the individual worlds . In the web this is coming out with XML mashups but we’re not far there either. It seems like the whole span of virtual worlds can use some persistence across them.