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For thoose of you who don't know it there is a perfectly good "in-depth" D&D multiplayer experience to be had on the computer. No need rummaging through piles of modern day "copy-cat" MMO games just to realise they are all the same.
Get the real thing! Go hardcore!
The game is a bit old and even though many might think its graphics are outdated it really isn't that bad. The community has been working hard (and still is) at creating persistent world servers with newer content.
The game itself is looking good still as you will see in some screenshots that I will post later. The graphics and engine altogether do what it is supposed to and can give you an "MMO" experience I think.
I'm gonna start of with some vital links:
Buy Neverwinter Nights here
Currently it costs just 10$ and there is no monthly fee as the servers are private, created by other players (Yes - theese servers are legal and this is how the game is supposed to be played).
Or buy a bundle of NWN1 and NWN2 here: http://atari.com/neverwintercomplete
Bioware's "legacy" page for Neverwinter Nights
The official page for the game has been scuffed under Biowares "legacy" games and provides only limited information unfortunately. If you scroll further down on that page you will find a few rows of text about the game. Better get your information some other place...
Unofficial homepage for Neverwinter Nights
Made by the community and provides a lot more information than the official legacy one.
This is the current official forum for NWN.
CEP stands for Community Expansion Pack and is one of the most popular add-ons to the game. Some of the online servers have this as a required download.
As of writing there is said to be a 2.4 version out.
The CEP is a little bulky though. Make sure that you need it for that server you want to play on, otherwise you can skip it.
Personally I prefer the project Q hak-pak but it is unfortunately not as widely used yet.
ABOUT PLAYING ONLINE/MULTIPLAYER
There are many different types of online servers. The most popular types are probably the "roleplay" servers and the "action" ones. They differ a little bit but mostly in the way that most roleplay servers like you to stay somewhat In-Character when creating and playing your character.
The most important thing is to understand that every server functions differently and you should probably read up on their forum how they would like you to play at their server and what restrictions there are.
However...do not read theese rules with fear. I am assuming that most server staffs nowdays have a grown up approach and as long as you don't spam or are being disrespectful to others you should be perfectly alright.
If you are interested to play at roleplay servers you could read this document that actually describes a little how to play. Personally I think that this document too much describes theese are "rules". Instead I recomend you to read it with an open mind and then to do the type and degree of roleplaying that you want yourself.
Gruush roleplayers guide to Neverwinter Nights
MORE ABOUT ONLINE/MULTIPLAYER
What servers should I play at?
Well...this is really your choice ofcourse. You could just fire up the game, choose what type of server you want, sort all the servers on amount of players and then join the one with the most players.
Note though...that just because some servers have a lot more players than others do not mean that they are the best ones. Naturally a server should at least have a couple of players on (otherwise it would be boring I agree).
Action servers are usually easier to levelup on and gather loot and the rules on staying in-character do not exist. Also they probably have less restrictions about building your character.
I have put together a list of my favourite servers here: http://www.xfire.com/clans/superfly2000 (That is also my gathering/community of NWN1 players on X-Fire.)
They are mostly roleplay servers as that is what I play on mostly. I do think that well known action server is called Higher ground...if that is your interest.
The CD-key is what the game uses to identify the game owner on the internet. From what I understand you only get a generic CD-Key when downloading the game from GOG so to actually play online you must follow their instructions on the troubleshooting FAQ for NWN to recieve a real CD-key.
WHAT IS X-FIRE?
X-Fire is a stand-alone communicator software that I use for chatting with and seeing on what servers my friends are playing. X-Fire can do a lot more as well.
A description of what you can do with X-Fire: http://www.xfire.com/cms/xf_help
Download X-Fire here: http://www.xfire.com/download
X-Fire is by no means a must have for playing NWN online but I full-heartedly recomend it. By now there are 300 members of this community...which is ofcourse a mere fraction of the total community...but we are growing.
I would even offer my services, in the cases I have enough time, to personally guide you through how to get your game setup, how to join and play on roleplay servers.
I uploaded a video to Youtube about playing on an example persistent world server called "Cormanthor".
Some gameplay trailers. They don't use any of the new custom content, but are still informative.
And a trailer with a little bit more modern content:
...and a Neverwinter Nights video tour from Gamespot: