PHoD World Tour of Africa

The Shabby Hyena Weirdo Returns! Properly, that is. Sort of…
And so, picking up from more or less exactly where I left off when the BioWare Forums went down and I got crushed to a paste by writing up all the field notes from a few months in an Indian cloud forest… All Things African - starting randomly in the north in Egypt


Or, actually, in fact, in the fictitious PHoD realm of Aegypara which looks an awful lot like Ancient Egypt but isn’t… And before you claim it also isn’t practical to fight Giant Spiders whilst wearing farcical high heels, maybe it is… maybe they make walking on sand easier… maybe… just shut up… With legs like Nepthyra’s, she can get away with anything

Lots of not actually Egyptian pyramids, temples and obelisks - and badly made furniture and stuff too - shall soon be yours when I’ve dusted all the piles of sand off it and checked it thoroughly for dire ancient curses. Because, although it isn’t Egypt, Aegypara’s still full of curses and this is cursed and that is cursed and those are cursed and… probably every last grain of sand is cursed with its own individual, custom, lovingly hand-crafted curse.

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But Africa isn’t all desert, is it? Of course not - there’s also JUNGLE! Which is a lot like Desert only completely different.


Travelling south from Egypt into the mysterious depths of some jungles which might be in Ghana but might equally be in the Congo, somewhere up into the Virungas around Mount Ruwenzori… You know, I’m just guessing… And what do we find? Well, yes, horrifying Spleen Creatures. Obviously we find those, that’s as mandatory with PHoD Stuff as are the voluptuous ladies who, for whatever weird reason, seem to delight in battling horrific Spleen Creatures.

But yes, more to the point, we also find piles of Ancient Ruins. This is the classic Africa, the Dark Continent of mystery and wonder and so of course there are acres of ancient citadels hidden behind more or less every tree in the rainforest. It’s compulsory… As with all the Indian stuff I did (and am still doing) for Kali’s Maldrapur Chronicles, this is yet another example of the Shabby Hyena Loony’s ongoing crusade to make NWN ever more multicultural - or something - and put enough stuff together to make a reasonably coherent and different cultural environment. Damn, that sounded pretentious; so cue another gratuitous shot of a cute girl with big… ruins behind her.

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But, Africa isn’t just Desert and Jungle, is it? No! There’s also Savannah! Aside from having Spotted Hyenas, obviously the most important things in all Africa, savannah also enables the PHoD Weirdo to go yet even further overboard and travel further south to the Zulu lands and start building kraals everywhere and adding yet still even more cultural diversity to NWN! And to shamelessly flaunt those Cane Baskets some more; no, still haven’t cured myself of that Chronic CaneBasketosis yet…


But then, when did I last do anything on a small scale? No, it has to be EPIC! Almost now ready to be thrown on the Vault, along with all the (not) Egyptian stuff and the Jungle Ruins are piles of kraal huts, mostly Zulu and Maasai types, plus lots of totems, idols, pots and assorted other stuff, I forget exactly what. But there’s loads of it anyway.

Oh, hm, and Big Mask Things, obviously there’s some of those too… All this freakishly immense pile of Assorted African Stuff will be available on the Vault soon, just as soon as I’ve finished checking for dodgy walkmeshes on the newer bits, made sure there aren’t any missing textures after I heave it all out of the vast and debased Demoness Tales Haks and ensure that no loathsome, godless, furniture-eating Termites have got into it…

And yes, our heroine is wearing ridiculously high-heeled leopardskin boots, which may seem a little impractical if not downright kinky for a fearless Mbyere warrioress but… you know, just pause and consider that word “Fantasy” that keeps cropping up with regards all this sword and sorcery stuff…

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Utterly, even ridiculously phantastic!

Which? The piles of new PHoD Stuff - or the ridiculously high-heeled leopardskin boots?

Why the stiletto heel-that-can-be-used-as-a-stiletto high-heeled not-faux leopardskin boots +5, of course! Whereas your piles… not that I’m referring to your piles in particular… or that you have piles, for that matter… the fact of the matter is, if I can manage to say it in a matter-of-fact way that is of course, is that the piles of PHoD stuff (still sounds quite rude, doesn’t it?)… that is, your new content is most certainly, unabashedly phantastic. Not to suggest of course that your previous piles were… oh bugger! Wait, no. I’m certainly not suggesting that your piles should be buggered. Please do forgive me for even the slightest hint of suggesting that… oh sod it! No, wait! I don’t mean…

Would it help if we use “heap” or “stack” or something? Or maybe a Big Brick.


Moving swiftly on to more NOT Ancient Egyptian Stuff at all. It just happens to look a bit Egyptian from certain angles… and some of it falls over a bit. Ignore the fallen over ones; no, really, these Placeables are manufactured to the highest possible standard and only rarely disintegrate and fall in the sand… Must be cursed, I suppose.

Um… no, see, you’re imagining it. They’re all complete circles, none of them have disintegrated over the last few thousand years… much… What do you expect of shoddy Giant Astrological Devices of Unimaginable Complexity built by a near extinct race of Big Bugs? But you begin to see how non-Egyptian this Egyptian stuff is - You remembered that Aegypara isn’t actually Egypt, right?

Despite the obviously Ancient Egyptian architecture and the evidently Egyptian decorative motifs and the blatantly Egyptian general appearance of almost every object in the realm… but aside from that, it’s completely not Egypt at all.

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Love the cultural stuff. Western Europe is completely covered (probably in spleens).

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Oh, it is - I’ve SEEN them!

Now, at this point, it is absolutely imperative that you keep in mind the fact that Aegypara is NOT Egypt.


Curved Arches… How many Curved Arches were in Ancient Egypt? Yes, that’s right, none at all, that’s how many. But Aegypara, as I keep saying with irritatingly heavy-handed frequency, is NOT Egypt. And it so too can have Curved Arches if it wants them, see… or if the Shabby Hyena Weirdo just gets lazy and borrows the entire ground floor of one of his new Maldrapur Chronicles buildings and paints it in Egyptian colours instead of Indian ones. It saved time. And since Aegypara isn’t Egypt at all, the Curved Arches aren’t a problem.

Unless you actually try to use this stuff to make a Module actually set in Egypt, then it might be a considerable problem and you might want to ignore this particular Walkable Interior Building a bit. Quite a lot in fact. Because it doesn’t just have a few Curved Arches, it’s got millions of them, just stacked!

But, on the other hand, as you can see when you venture outside, this version does have a reassuringly Egyptian pyramid glued to the roof to make it look more at home and to strain the structural integrity of the interior pillars something chronic… unless… maybe it’s a Cardboard Replica Pyramid and so doesn’t weigh anything. Yes, that must be it…

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Some more random images whilst I continue to scour the Demoness Tales Haks for a couple of curiously elusive texture files…


The Aegypara Modules centre around Queen Nepthyra, a spoilt, self-centred, petulant, young woman who suddenly finds herself having to rule an entire realm when her father is mysteriously killed. Only she’s far more interested in herself and in obtaining more and better luxury cushions for the palace than in ruling a realm. (And wishes to ban by law that bloke who keeps appearing in the background, in the citadel, with those outrageously pungent goats which he claims he’s training to become highly skilled acrobats…)

But dire forces are at work in the land of Aegypara - which isn’t Egypt at all - and soon cause horrifying slaughter and appalling catastrophe such as cutting off all supplies of Nepthyra’s favourite sugared mintcake and honey wine - which is clearly intolerable. Fortunately for all concerned, Nepthyra falls in love with her new handmaiden, and though a mere commoner, little Qebetnef proves considerably more practical and organized than her queen… So, unusually for me, it’s essentially a love story - but it’s a PHoD love story, so there’s lots of Spleen Monster Invasions and stuff. Naturally.

Science has proven that PHoD is pathologically incapable of making a Module without creating at least one completely new Spleen Creature each and every time. Often several. And yes, Spleen Creatures 3 is amongst the new stuff heading in the general direction of the Vault.

You have been warned. Spleens can strike at any time… Long time followers of the old PHoD Things thread back on the BioWare Forums may also be interested to know that the PHoD Dinosaurs, in considerable numbers, are getting close to completion, the KotOR Tilesets Project has gone through a few more major changes and is progressing well, there should soon be enough stuff to merit a third huge update to Kali’s Maldrapur Chronicles stuff and… oh, lots of other weird things I shan’t try explaining here… yet…

Sorry, the Dinosaurs have contaminated other things a bit, so don’t be too surprised at horrifying Aegyparan Spleen Monsters that have evidently absorbed a bit of Triceratops DNA somewhere down the line…

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And there’s sort of ordinary stuff too… such as these granaries which are faithfully copied in Gmax from actual Ancient Egyptian granaries even though Aegypara is NOT Egypt.


Thing with that type of granary is that, if you walk up the steps and tip your chickpeas or whatever into them by the bucketload, it’s all very nice and easy and there’s no way stinking, twisted, evil rodents can get at them. Fine. Then you start taking them out as you use your harvest. Easy enough at first… But those things can be fifteen feet high… How many Ancient Egyptian citizens perished whilst leaning too far to try to extract the last chickpeas and thus fell in and probably broke their necks?

Marketplace buildings for the vending of chickpeas or any one of a trillion other things that aren’t chickpeas. Like… Cane Baskets, for example… Yes, we’ve stumbled across another of PHoD’s Cane Basket Dependent Cultures here.

Pyramids: Not quite so “ordinary”, but you can’t have Egypt - I mean Aegypara and not Egypt at all, without Pyramids. Though, as this is NOT Egypt, most of the Pyramids you’ll find in the Aegypara Hak are just a little bit different.

And rubbery, unrealistic furniture and stuff, loosely and vaguely based upon Egyptian furniture in the most slovenly and low-poly way possible.

But, aside from keeping the polycounts practical so’s Nepthyra’s curves don’t bring the game to a standstill, I thought having leopard benches with better leopards than the actual NWN leopard would offend and insult the BioWare leopard who would then feel unloved and I don’t want to be responsible for a Vengeful and Embittered Angular Squared-Off Leopard Invasion.

Only watch out for those Spleen Invasions… Like as not, the moment you install your exciting new (not) Egyptian furniture in your (not) Egyptian palace, Spleen Monsters will trample in and smash it all to bits and kill all your expensively uniformed guardsmen. All furniture thus available in “trampled on” styles.

Just completing final Hak tests now. Should have time to drop a Big Box marked “Aegypara” on the Vault tomorrow. Then you can poke about at all the not actually Egyptian stuff for yourselves.

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Amazing stuff !!! Once again, my poor brain is completely mystified by your incredible productivity and powerful creativity. You most assuredly own some time machine, metabolic accelerator or maybe a multi-clone incubator :wink: :wink:

PS: Good to see you back :smile:

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One little question. As this is not Egypt are there any not-cats included as I assume that Aegypara was their birthplace.

TR

CaveGnome: No Time Machine, just a normal Reptilian metabolism (never quite understood why) and no clones. I’m just mad and this seems to help with “doing stuff”.
Tarot: Sorry, no cats, at least not yet. Mostly seems to be Scarabs and Falcons - and those omnipresent Big Dogs, of course. There may very well be some feline additions by the time the first inevitable giant Aegypara update happens though. There are some cats scribbled on some cursed blueprints…


For now, the initial Aegypara release is now… um… released… damn, hate when that happens… Issued. No, sounds stupid. Available! Yes, that’s better! Available. Now.
https://neverwintervault.org/project/nwn1/hakpak/original-hakpak/phod-aegypara
Surprising absolutely nobody at all, that’s the link to it. A link I’m even reasonably confident should work, 'cause these are the New Forums, where things happen when you want them to.

Unlike certain other so-called Forums which are blatantly cursed.
So, that’s it for Egypt for now - not that it’s Egypt at all - and we’ll be moving south across the great African continent to… a sort of confused mixture of pretty much everything between Ghana, Tanzania, and South Africa… As long as there’s Hyenas there, we do not care!

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And yes, the central and southern parts of PHoD’s Africa are infested with weird and pathologically aggressive Killer Spleen Monsters too. Inevitably.


And yes, I know those totems look just a bit more South Seas Islands, debased Polynesian sort of things rather more than African, as such, and they were done ages ago for a Demoness Tales Module set on some vaguely South Seas sort of islands… but they were sort of tribal things and so I’ve thrown them in the big African box anyway 'cause they don’t look wholly out of place - as long as you’re not trying to be too accurate… Accuracy, in NWN, where some animals have square, angular heads?

All sorts of more genuinely African artefacts, idols, masks, totems and so forth as well though. For those who want to make the attempt at accuracy. Though, as the PHoD African Collection covers a good eight or nine completely different tribal cultures, it’s probably still not going to look any too “accurate” if it’s all sitting in one little kraal, but still. If you just want a look that says “Africa”, I’ve got you covered.

Just add gazelle, zebra, wildebeest, etc as required and you’re good to go out on safari and… probably get eaten by a horrifying Killer Spleen Creature. But some of you may, bizarrely, choose not to have your savannah and jungle infested with loathsome Death Monsters.

And before setting out to look for King Solomon’s Mines, or whatever, be sure to take note of the Blatantly Significant, eerily map-like patterns painted on the ancient Cured Hides. Probably has points of interest like “Pit of Spikes”, “Unnecessary Room filled for no good reason with Giant Snakes” or “Spleen Monster Lair”. Oh, and maybe a “Treasure Chamber with Fiendishly Complicated Booby Traps from which nobody ever returns alive.”

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Still loving everything you’re doing, especially on these sides. NWN’s had that whole… Only fantasy Europe thing for ages. Heck knows I haven’t touched the savannah area in my mod for ages, but these should help actually do something

(Also if you have a better savannah tileset than just using Drylands I’m all ears, though I do have a soft spot for drylands especially with the muddy riverbed terrain in it)

Mind this’ll probably just end up with me doing everything I normally do when I touch these, which is to say, popping vultures down everywhere

Drylands is good, though I’ve hit it with some mild bricks over the years… But this whole Africa thing required more. There is a new PHoD Savannah Tileset being hit with Big Bricks. Main reason? If you wander around Africa enough - depending where you are on the continent, of course, there’s little point in trying this in the middle of a busy street in the centre of Nairobi, you’ll just get run over… But in the bits I’m trying to recreate, you will soon notice that a lot of central and southern Africa has a very distinctive reddish-orange soil but it tends only to be obvious where the ground has been disturbed, falls away sharply or has been flattened out and gets walked on a lot. Or where the termites have been at it. Observe this kraal…


Reddish-orange soil (painstakingly dug up in Botswana and carefully transplanted into NWN by high, incomprehensible means) inside the village fence, whilst outside a beige, faintest trace of green, cracked ground with scrubby vegetation texture prevails, with grass on. Needing that variation in terrain types was really the main reason to do a new Tileset.

It’s basically a stripped down TNO01 Tileset, with the city terrain used for the orange bits where kraals can be built, etc. Got rid of all the castle stuff and other blatantly non-African things, just kept the terrain. Currently removing many of the larger trees and replacing them with baobabs (like the one in the PHoD Pile of Placeables Hak).

Currently also considering trying to have two different grass types. This shortish one and also a damn great six foot tall Ultimate Elephant Grass type that you have to wade through with near zero visibility so that you can unexpectedly come face to face with a leopard… or more likely some horrific mutated Spleen Monster… But don’t forget, it’s not just savannah…

There’s all the jungle stuff too. Forgotten ancient ruins containing nameless secrets and fabled treasures that probably turn out to just be… more horrifying mutated Spleen Monsters… Such things are mandatory in Africa. Well, in PHoD’s Africa anyway.

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Loving both bits of it. Also the random photobombing giant hyena

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Did you just photo-bomb the second image (upper right edge)?

TR

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Photobombing hyena of doom is the best screenshot in the history of nwn1.

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