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Icewind Dale II Preview

  Friday, July 19, 2002

On the Black Isle Developer Boards

From the Black Isle Developer message boards.

Icewind Dale II
J.E. Sawyer (Lead Designer)
Unweighted point buy: Using the scale supplied to you by the DMG, not because of the net benefits. I can make a weighted point buy system where a score of 18 equals 50 points. That doesn't mean it actually reflects the mathematical increase of bonuses that you get over lesser scores. The net benefits of every stat in 3E increase by a unit of one for every two points that you increase or decrease.

Using weighted point buy to justify weighted point buy doesn't work. You have to justify it on the merits of practical effects.

I don't think anyone in QA has ever hesitated to use a monk or a paladin because of unweighted point buy. They have a lot of abilities, yes. And many of those abilities rely on a variety of stats. But the fact of the matter is that they have a lot of abilities. That they use a variety of stats isn't by coincidence -- it does make character creation more difficult. That's one of the trade-offs for playing a paladin or a monk. They get a lot of cool abilities, but their abilities use several different stats.

You are arguing for weighted point buy, suggesting that unweighted point buy leads to mediocre characters. And yet, the "rewarded" character example has 16,14,14,14,14,14. If the system rewards making characters with a tight range of stats, doesn't that, in fact, reward mediocrity? Anyone who chose to make a character with two 18s and several low scores would effectively be punished.

The fact that other creatures use the same scale for deriving bonuses from stats doesn't have anything to do with whether or not characters should use weighted or unweighted point buy. A weighted point-buy system suggests that a net increase of +1 to all related bonuses at 18 is worth more than a net increase of +1 to all related bonuses at 12. That's obviously not the case.

The weighted point buy system also does not follow suit with any of the various spells and magic items that increase ability scores throughout the game. No spell that increases ability scores scales its bonus based on what the final score is. If someone casts Cat's Grace on a character, it doesn't matter whether he or she has a base 12 Dex or a base 20 Dex. They're still going to get 1d4+1 to their Dex score. This means that all characters will receive the same net increase to related bonuses from the spell.

If spells and items follow this unweighted pattern during gameplay, why shouldn't the stats follow the same unweighted pattern during character generation? Whatever character a player makes, you can always assume that they will make the best use of their scores for their characters. That's the only "objective" value you can assume about stats across a wide range of characters.

I played through the entire game with a party that only had one min-maxed character. They did just fine. My barbarian was incredibly strong, dumb, and had a low wisdom. He got charmed, dominated, and held a lot. My fighter had a 10 Strength, 20 Dex, 10 Con, 16 Int, 14 Wisdom, 8 Charisma. He was almost never dominated, could usually sneak around with the thief, and generally was less of a liability than the barbarian. Whether you want to make the stereotypical min-maxed characters or not, I am confident that people will make the most of their stats. I don't believe people that make characters against type will feel cheated or burdened because of the choices they make.

Perhaps your experience will differ from mine, but my experience playing through the game and watching many other people play through the game leads me to believe that unweighted point-buy works just fine for a very wide variety of characters.

I think this comes back to "players are always going to make the best use of their stats." That's what you can count on, regardless of what race/class combo they pick. They will always attempt to avoid situations where their low stats (if any) are important, and will attempt to maximize situations where their high stats are important. That doesn't mean, however, that they'll always be able to control their situation.

There were many cases in IWD2 where my low-strength elf fighter needed to be in melee to help the party. His missile weapons either weren't effective or he was in short supply of ammo. When he waded in, he suffered for his low strength and con. I tried to keep my barbarian away from clerics casting Hold Person and wizards casting Dire Charm. It didn't always work, unfortunately. When they were given free reign to shine, boy, they really were effective. Unfortunately, they were forced into situations where their low stats really were a hindrance to them.
Damien Foletto (Junior Designer)
Unweighted point buy: Josh has already explained the reasoning behind unweighted point buy more times than anyone here would care to count, so I won't try to explain it here. However, saying that the game will be unbalanced because the only way through it is with min/maxed characters is absurd. Have you played the game yet? No. Is it BIS' habit to make unbalanced games? No. I know whatever I say will not convince you to like unweighted point buy (there's nothing more that I COULD say that Josh hasn't already), but you should actually play the game before saying it's unbalanced (when it comes out, of course).

I just wanted to point out the fact that Josh already explained the reasoning, point by point, and several times. Look up his posts and you'll find it. However, I think no matter what you read you won't be convinced, which is fine. Sometimes it's just more fun to be bitter.

LAN support: IWD2 will support IPX and TCP/IP. So yes, it supports LAN play.
Tex Yang (Quality Assurance)
In game encyclopedia: There is an in-game mini-manual/encyclopedia where the 'Information' button was, which lists all the classes, feats, skills, races, etc and their descriptions.

  Thursday, July 18, 2002

New Poll Posted

We asked which game would you like to see made into a movie and Planescape: Torment won with 1560 votes.

Here are the full results:

Total votes: 5291
Answer
Votes
Percentage
Baldur’s Gate
1377
26%
Baldur’s Gate II
1404
26.5%
Throne of Bhaal
464
8.8%
Planescape: Torment
1560
29.5%
Icewind Dale
343
6.5%
Heart of Winter
52
1%
Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance
91
1.7%


To see the results of previous polls, visit our poll archives.

The new poll asks what race will your main character be in Icewind Dale II.

Let the voting begin!


On the Black Isle Developer Boards

From the Black Isle Developer message boards.

Icewind Dale II
Damien Foletto (Junior Designer)
Switching avatars when multi-classing: From the feedback we got from QA - you know, the guys we keep chained in the basement and feed rations of paper and hot steam, and force them to accept anything and everything we throw at them, whether it's fun or not - the switching avatar thing is not confusing, does not spoil the game, and does not make the earth stop spinning. We would have liked to have the player select the avatar of their choice (I've been an advocate of that feature since the onset), but it just wasn't feasible as a high enough priority. It's not a conspiracy to torment and belittle our fans. We did not leave it out just to anger you and folks who feel as you do. There were just too many higher priority-programming issues to resolve. And it's not that easy, despite what your experience might tell you.

Number of dice with the Collector’s Edition: 10 die. Standard DnD fare.
Tex Yang (Quality Assurance)
Making your own pre-made parties: Alright, here's the syntax for adding your own pre-gen party. What you need to do is have the characters which you want to include in the 'Characters' folder, and keep track of what their names are.

There will be a 'Party.ini' file in the root directory of the game, and what you need to do is edit this file and add, at the very end, the following:

[Party x]
Name=
Descr1=
Descr2=
Descr3=
Descr4=
Descr5=
Descr6=
Descr7=
Descr8=
Char1=<1st party member's name>
Char2=<2nd party member's name>
Char3=<3rd party member's name>
Char4=<4th party member's name>
Char5=<5th party member's name>
Char6=<6th party member's name>

x is the next number of the pre-gen parties (which would be 6, if it's the first party after the 5 that come with the game). The actual party name, descriptions, and character names would not have the < and >, so something like 'Char1=Grunther'

You can just add to the existing ones that come with the game, and yes the names have to match.

Yes the pre-gen characters will be in the 'Characters' folder.

I wouldn't recommend starting a new game with a pre-gen party if you wipe them from the folder then.

Search for Boo Update

After a little house cleaning of inactive members, the PlanetBaldursGate Seti@Home Group now has 51 members looking for Boo, the miniature giant space hamster. Minsc would be so proud!

The group has processed 23,353 work units, with E. T. Aiken leading the pack at 5,687 units.

More members are welcome. If you would like to join in on the searching of the stars for goodness, just click join at the top of the page.


Icewind Dale II Preview

The Stratos Group has posted a preview of Icewind Dale II.
Black Isle Studios have also been promising tons of new material in this game. Is it there? Yes. Almost every detail is new, from character generation to spells. Most of this, though, comes from a single source. Black Isle Studios has made this their first Infinity Engine game based on the new Dungeons and Dragons 3rd Edition/d20 rule set. Those of you that have played Neverwinter Nights are already familiar with some of the differences. Those that have not can expect to find a very different system than was seen in earlier games. It works well, and, best of all, the actual gameplay is not affected all that much by the changes. Once you have your characters, you will find that the mechanics work much the same as in the earlier games. The interface was overhauled, putting all of the controls at the bottom of the screen instead of surrounding the playing area, much like the interface in Planescape: Torment. It was nice, but so was the old version. It is a change that some will like, some won't, but most will not even notice. There are a few other, minor changes in there, like barrels that can be broken open, and an in-town guide that can take you from place to place instantly, but they are frosting on the cake.

  Wednesday, July 17, 2002

On the Black Isle Developer Boards

From the Black Isle Developer message boards.

Icewind Dale II
J.E. Sawyer (Lead Designer)
Ranger spell list:
1st
Delay Poison
Entangle
Minor Elemental Barrier
Sunscorch
Summon Nature's Ally I

2nd
Alicorn Lance
Beast Claw
Cure Light Wounds
Hold Animal
Protection from Fire
Sleep
Summon Nature's Ally II

3rd
Rainstorm
Cure Moderate Wounds
Neutralize Poison
Prot f Lightning
Remove Disease
Storm Shell
Summon Nature's Ally III

4th
Call Lightning
Cure Serious Wounds
Flame Strike
Freedom of Movement
Giant Vermin
Nondetection
Snakebite
Star Metal Cudgel
Summon Nature's Ally IV

5th
Animal Rage
Insect Plague
Iron Skins
Smashing Wave
Summon Nature's Ally V

6th
Conjure Animals
Planar Ally: Fire Elemental
Elemental Barrier
Sol's Searing Orb
Static Charge
Summon Nature's Ally VI

Blindness: Blindness is much more damaging in 3E because it uses concealment rules. A blind character has a flat 50% chance to miss a target, regardless of their roll to hit.

Weapon specialization feat: It can be taken by anyone with four levels of fighter. Only characters with four levels of fighter can take it, but unless a granted feat explicitly cannot be used for WS, anyone meeting the requirement can take it.

Paladin spell list:
1st
Bless
Cure Light Wounds
Protection From Evil

2nd
Bull's Strength
Delay Poison
Draw Upon Holy Might
Remove Paralysis
Minor Elemental Barrier

3rd
Cure Moderate Wounds
Dispel Magic
Magic circle against Evil
Prayer
Strength of One

4th
Cure Serious Wounds
Death Ward
Defensive Harmony
Freedom of Movement
Holy Power
Neutralize Poison
Recitation

5th
Champion's Strength
Lower Resistance
Spell Resistance
Undead Ward

6th
Circle of Blades
Divine Shell
Spiritual Wrath
Damien Foletto (Junior Designer)
Vampires: No vampires this time around.

Druid weapon and armor limitations: Druids are only limited to the feats they take. This means that if you take proficiencies in heavy armor, you can wear heavy armor. If you take proficiencies in great swords, you can wield great swords. By default you are limited to simple weapons like short swords and clubs.
Tex Yang (Quality Assurance)
Low wisdom and dialogue: It won't be detracting or anything, just means you won't get to see dialogue options/choices sometimes. Also you'll have to use a different set of tactics in some parts of the game, as opposed to others.

Wilderness lore: Any class may put points into wilderness lore as a skill, even as a cross-class.

The only two exceptions to this rule are animal empathy and use magic device - these two skills can only be raised during a druid/ranger or rogue/bard level up. The rest of them follow the same general rule, class skill spends 1 point, and cross-class spends 2.

Hmm I'm 90% sure druids have WL as a class skill too, but I'd have to double check for the barbarian.

BG:DA Xbox Screenshots

Black Isle Studios has posted ten new screenshots from the Xbox version of Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance.


Icewind Dale II Previews

PC IGN has posted a hands on preview of Icewind Dale II.
In addition to wizards, the 3rd Edition includes a new spellcasting class, the sorcerer. Sorcerers are distinct from wizards in that their magic is "intuitive rather than logical." They acquire spells more slowly and in fewer numbers than their more learned brothers but they don't have to bother memorizing spells before using them. They also use charisma instead of intelligence as the governing attribute for spell casting.
RPGDot has also posted a preview of Icewind Dale II.
This is the part that really makes or breaks a game, and this is one area that IWD2 sets itself apart from other games. In IWD2, you won't find those long-winded, epic, boring diatribes that only a 100 year-old college professor would like. The dialogue is witty and fun to read, often giving you options to respond seriously, humorously, or with a mean-spirit if you want. In so many games I find myself clicking through dialogue that is a carbon copy of what the last 10 npcs said, but in IWD I actually found myself looking forward to walking around talking to everyone in town.
Not to be left out, Edbis has also posted a preview of Icewind Dale II.
Technically Icewind Dale II is still nice to look at as it features higher resolutions like 1024x768 and up and it also is no pain when it comes to hardware requirements as it should run just nicely on a 500 MHz cpu and 128 Mb of Ram. That is why I am a bit sad when I think of the Infinity Engine leaving, that itself is a bit of RPG history.

  Tuesday, July 16, 2002

On the Black Isle Developer Boards

From the Black Isle Developer message boards.

Icewind Dale II
J.E. Sawyer (Lead Designer)
Bard spell list:
1st
Charm Person
Chromatic Orb
Color Spray
Cure Light Wounds
Grease
Identify
Mage Armor
Prot From Evil
Minor Mirror Image
Sleep
Summon Monster I

2nd
Blindness
Blur
Bull's Strength
Cat's Grace
Cure Moderate Wounds
Deafness
Delay Poison
Dire Charm
Eagle's Splendor
Hold Person
Horror
Invisibility
Luck
Mirror Image
Power Word Sleep
See Invisibility
Silence
Summon Monster II
Vocalize

3rd
Blink
Confusion
Cure Serious Wounds
Dispel Magic
Emotion: Rage
Emotion: Fear
Emotion: Hope
Emotion: Despair
Ghost Armor
Haste
Invisibility Sphere
Magic Circle Against Evil
Remove Curse
Remove Disease
Slow
Summon Monster III

4th
Cure Critical Wounds
Dismissal
Dolorous Decay
Hold Monster
Improved Invisibility
Neutralize Poison
Shout
Spirit Armor
Summon Monster IV

5th
Healing Circle
Phantom Blade
Power Word: Silence
Shadow Conjuration
Summon Monster V
Summon Shadow

6th
Great Shout
Greater Shadow Conjuration
Improved Haste
Shades
Summon Monster VI
Summon Invisible Stalker

7th
Mass Invisibility
Prismatic Spray
Summon Djinni
Summon Efreeti

8th
Mass Dominate
Power Word Blind
Wail of the Banshee

Paper dolls with character creation: You see the paper doll during character creation to choose your colors. After that, you never see it.

What if SR stacked: Have any of you actually thought through what happens if SR stacks? It doesn't really matter for six characters games with players who don't milk XP out of everything, but there are a lot of people who play with small parties, single characters, or play through in HoF mode. If a 13th level drow monk has MR stack, the result is 23 + 24 = 47 SR! You would need to be 27th level to HOPE to overcome that 5% of the time. At 20th level, this becomes 30 + 31 = 61 SR. And that ignores the possibility of having random items and spells grant additional SR bonuses. Sorry, it just doesn't work. It makes those characters, for all practical purposes, completely invulnerable to magic.
Damien Foletto (Junior Designer)
Hippie commune design: We all did a bit of everything. We all designed areas, unique items, dialogs, etc. There's no "I" is "team," baby!

As for specific areas, it won't mean much to tell you what areas so-n-so did right now since no one outside of Interplay has played it yet. Besides, we all contributed ideas to different areas through critiques and weekly meetings. It's a communal thing.

Well, I could, and should, only speak for myself - so I will. I did 2 areas (which consist of between 2 to 5 maps, big and small) and co-designed the end-game area with John Deiley. I also designed the random drop items, while Jason Suin implemented them in the game and came up with some less generic names for a lot of them since my brain was getting fried after random item #300. I did about 50 unique items (sounds about right, I didn't really count). I'm sure I'm missing something.

But keep in mind that it is still very much a collaborative effort. Tom French and Chad Nicholas were instrumental in getting the scripts to perform the actions we wanted in the game, and they came up with some excellent ideas to make the fights more fun, and events more spectacular. And, especially, we can't emphasize enough QA's contribution in making the game fun. A lot of great ideas came out from there as well. Even though I stated I designed the above areas, etc., I cannot emphasize enough the collaborative effort from everyone involved. This project definitely is not a one-person show.

Chad Nicholas (Sciptor)
No more paper dolls: Your in-game avatar is used in place of the old paper dolls.
Tex Yang (Quality Assurance)
Quivering palm: Quivering palm may be used once per day once the monk has acquired this special attack.

Dialogue checks: These are independent of each other, so intimidate and charisma, for example, are not bunched into one check - it's either one or the other (sometimes there's more than one variable checked for, like maybe you need to be a dwarf with a charisma of 13+ or something like that):

-Bluff
-Intimidate
-Diplomacy
-Wisdom
-Charisma
-Intelligence
-The other stats, once every blue moon
-Race/Subrace
-Alignment
-Gender (but mostly for variety, it doesn't change the plot or anything).

I think that's it, though I might have missed something, due to old age and all.

Icewind Dale II Screenshots

RPGVault has posted fourteen new screenshots from Icewind Dale II.


  Monday, July 15, 2002

On the Black Isle Developer Boards

From the Black Isle Developer message boards.

Icewind Dale II
J.E. Sawyer (Lead Designer)
Spellcraft checks when scribing scrolls: I'm not positive, but I am confident that Spellcraft checks are made and that specialists do, in fact, gain bonuses when scribing spells of their school.

Prohibited schools not being chosen from a list: Because some schools, like Illusion and Divination, have such a small list of implement-able spells that those schools don't have the same "weight" that they do in a standard PnP game.
Tex Yang (Quality Assurance)
One handed spears: No, there are no 1 handed spears.

Ninth level cleric spells: Yes, clerics get two 9th level regular spells, plus two 9th level domain spells.

Kegs and barrels being breakable containers: Yup they're the only container-type things which can be destroyed (there's other stuff which can destroyed as well, but they do not 'drop/contain' stuff like the kegs and the barrels).

Opposition schools: Opposition schools are already picked, and specialists get 1 extra spell per level. They are:

Abjuration ------> Illusion, Transmutation
Conjuration -----> Divination, Evocation
Divination ------> Evocation
Enchantment ---> Necromancy
Evocation ------> Conjuration, Enchantment
Illusion ---------> Abjuration, Necromancy
Necromancy ----> Illusion, Transmutation
Transmutation --> Abjuration

Cross class skill limits: Cross class limits are in effect if the character has no levels of another class in which that skill would be a primary for.

For example: A fighter x would have a (level +3)/2 limit on their bluff skill, but a fighter x/rogue 1 would not have it, and would be allowed to go up to level +3 at the cost of 2 points every skill bought.

Number of scrolls to be found: Scrolls are more plentiful this time around. Some are still rarer than others, but players shouldn't have any problems finding enough scrolls to play around with.

Armor penalties to Rogue skills: IWD2 skill penalties are:

Leather, -0
Studded Leather, -1
Chain, -5
Splint, -7
Half Plate, -7
Field/Full Plate, -6

Buckler -1
Small Shield -1
Large Shield -2
Tower Shield -10

Also, these only apply to skills which have a dexterity modifier.

Icewind Dale II Preview

GameSpot has posted a preview of Icewind Dale II.
And with a few exceptions, you can also freely multi-class your characters--that is, choose a class for your character, then when that character advances a level, choose a different character class. If you so desire, you can create a barbarian/rogue/sorcerer/ranger--a useful character with a lot of skills, but one that will be weaker in a fight than a character that simply chose to be a fighter and remained a fighter for several experience levels, gaining fighter-related skills and feats. You'll want to consider the trade-off between depth (having a character advance in a single class and becoming much more powerful in that class) and breadth (having a character take multiple classes), but from what we've seen so far, this trade-off seems fair. If nothing else, all these choices will lend Icewind Dale II additional replay value, as zealous players will want to go through the game with a new party and develop different skills. Fortunately, players who might not want to deal with this huge variety will also be able to choose to play as one of five different and well-balanced pre-generated parties that will ship with the game.

  Sunday, July 14, 2002

On the Black Isle Developer Boards

From the Black Isle Developer message boards.

Icewind Dale II
J.E. Sawyer (Lead Designer)
Cross class skills: There is no such restriction in IWD2. However, I don't see this as a bad thing. If someone wants to shove tons of points into a cross-class skill, they'll still be worse off than a character that has it as a class skill. Ten skill points into Disable Device just gets you five ranks.
Chris Avellone (Designer)
About EBGames still saying “kits” are in the game: Definitely no kits. Not a one.

One handed staff: It's intended to be a cool item for monks and mages and lets them have an extra hand free.

You have the chance to get it pretty early on, not surprisingly.
Tex Yang (Quality Assurance)
About EBGames still saying “kits” are in the game: No kits, but there is one particular reference later in the game that is extremely hilarious.

Number of feats: If I remember right, the total amount of feats in the game (this is including the weapon feats) was in the high 60s, almost 70 if I remember correctly.

Well looks like I miscounted back then, the total is 75 unique feats. Armor (light, medium, heavy) is counted as one, so is cleave/improved cleave, toughness, spell penetration, blah blah blah (the ones that can be taken for more than one rank).

There is one more first level only feat, which is Resist Poison. This one allows Grey Dwarves and Half-orcs a +4 save against poison.

As far as I know, all the feats that have been removed were already mentioned in some way or another (riddlemaster feats, deathblow, yadda yadda yadda).

One handed staff: The whispering staff uses the mace animation and graphics, it's more of a role-play type thing, due to the fact we couldn't make a brand new animation just for that.

Number of CDs: The revs we've been getting have been 2 discs. If that's subject to change is yet to be seen (I doubt it will change though).

Spells per level: Now this is just a quickie, it's-after-midnite-and-I'm-still-checking-stuff, count - so I may be off a number or two.

Anyways, this is the number of spells which the classes can choose from per level - they are not unique spells, and will overlap into other classes:

Bards ----------------------> 11, 19, 16, 09, 06, 06, 04, 03, xx
Clerics ---------------------> 12, 16, 22, 15, 13, 10, 08, 11, 02
Druids ---------------------> 08, 11, 15, 11, 09, 05, 09, 03, 05
Paladins -------------------> 03, 05, 05, 07, 04, 03, xx, xx, xx
Rangers -------------------> 05, 07, 07, 09, 05, 06, xx, xx, xx
Sorcerers and Wizards -----> 19, 25, 21, 26, 22, 26, 17, 14, 09

*Cleric spells may vary by one depending on the alignment - the one I listed is for a good cleric.

We adjusted the spell tables to account for levels 21-30.

Number of monsters summoned per summon spell: Usually 3 or 4 each spell, some more, some less. So Monster Summoning I cycles between 3 or 4 monsters, Monster Summoning II cycles between 3 or 4 different ones, etc.

Create undead: Nope, there are no Create Undead or Create Greater Undead spells in the game. Animate dead does change what kind of monster shows up depending on the cleric level though, and they're not limited to skeletons and zombies - it's kind of a convenience type of thing.

I don't know the exact reason, but my guess would be to keep the spell casting as uncomplicated as possible, since a lot of the undead which are summoned by those spells get summoned by animate dead, just a matter of what level the caster is. Just speculation on my part though.

Fear spell: Fear has been removed from the game, horror is the one (fear-inducing spell) that's being used.

Endure elements is also not in the game.

J.E. Sawyer Interview

Icebound has posted an interview with J.E. Sawyer, Lead Designer for Icewind Dale II.
Icebound: Do you believe DnD has a future with Black Isle, or is this likely to be the last PC title utilizing the license?

J.E. Sawyer: I'm sure we'll make more D&D; games. We have the license until 2005. Some people think that D&D; games are "wearing out" again, like alewives dying and flopping up on shore every seven years. I think the challenge comes in taking a fresh approach to the games. There is a lot more to D&D; that can be explored. It's not that difficult to come at the system and settings from a fresh perspective. The difficulty lies in getting EVERYONE to see things that way and work together towards a common goal.

Icewind Dale II Previews

Sorcerer’s Place has posted a preview of Icewind Dale II.
3rd edition D&D; rules that the game uses have been implemented very well. The multitude of selectable skills and feats makes for very varied characters, and leveling up is not simply a routine, but an important event where you decide which additional skills and feats your characters would benefit from. "Annals of Halgren", the pre-made party I played with had a sorcerer that could finally use a crossbow! After Neverwinter Nights this might seem nothing special, but for anyone used to previous AD&D; Infinity Engine games, this means much more - a totally different approach to tactics at the very least. Mages are not simply fragile porcelain that needs to be at the back of the party all the time, but can hold their own in battle. Ask my armour-clad sorcerer if you don't believe me.
HomeLan Fed has also posted a preview of Icewind Dale II.
The user interface for Icewind Dale II is thankfully easy to use with the UI on the bottom of the screen that allows you to keep track of the characters in your party, as well as inventories and other features. The game uses the typical PC RPG dialog branches for the characters to chat with NPCs. Combat is also handled like most RPGs with characters targeting an enemy and the action happening automatically.

  Saturday, July 13, 2002

Darkest Day Mod Updated

Richard Haines, Max Schnur and TeamBG have released version 1.0.3 of The Darkest Day, an unofficial mod for Baldur’s Gate II. This new version now supports both Shadow’s of Amn and Throne of Bhaal. For those that have an older version, there is also a patch available.

Remember: These files are not supported by Interplay, Black Isle Studios or BioWare in any way, shape or form. You should download and install them at your own risk.


Icewind Dale II Screenshots

PC IGN has posted twelve new screenshots from Icewind Dale II.

Non-members are limited to 5 screenshots per day. If you have problems viewing them, we have posted them in our July screenshots section.


  Friday, July 12, 2002

BG:DA Xbox Preview

Xbox IGN has posted a preview of the Xbox version of Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance.
If you loved the gameplay in the original Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance, you're going to love it all over again with the beauty of Xbox graphics. That is to say, the Xbox version of Dark Alliance made the journey from the PS2 totally intact. The only major differences would be the way controls are mapped. And really this comes down to the application of the triggers and the black & white buttons on the Xbox. Most PS2 to Xbox ports put the shoulder button functions on these buttons. For Baldur's Gate the default setting puts your "use health potion" command on the right trigger which makes for extremely quick and easy access during the heat of battle. It feels a lot more reliable and handy than reaching for the Dual Shock's shoulder button.

Shop
Resources
Discuss the games and strategies with other fans.

Build and store characters using all the rules in the game.

Extensive database of all the items in BG, Tales, BG2, Icewind Dale and Torment.

Annotated dungeon survival guide for Icewind Dale and Heart of Winter.

Annotated guide to Sigil and the Planes.

Poll
What race will your main character be in Icewind Dale II?
Dwarf
Dwarf - Gold
Dwarf - Gray
Elf
Elf - Drow
Elf - Wild
Gnome
Gnome - Deep
Half-elf
Half-orc
Halfling
Halfling - Ghostwise
Halfling - Strongheart
Human
Human - Aasimar
Human - Tiefling



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