Untold Tales of Tolkien Series - Developments Thread

Wow, you’ve binged through UA! Im still staring at early act 2 :joy:

Thank you so much for taking the time to revisit and put together all those patches.

I will finish my first run, apply my fixes and then set about making my changes before another run with the conjurer. If you’re happy to assist further, I’ll share any stumbling block I encounter with you. Also, I can provide you with IP just before re-release just to be sure I’ve not broken anything.

Naturally the final campaign will be covered here. I’m not even sure what im calling it now but it’ll be here.

Noted that there is an encounter with some blue cultists in east mirkwood which is triggered on a return journey from mirkwood itself. What a missed opportunity! I don’t know what possessed me to drop a mob of these with nothing to follow it up with.

I will be making some changes and additions to this as it allows me to fix one of the continuity problems im facing for the next campaign.

Yes, I’m always available to help with any further testing. I’d be happy to look at the latest IP. DM a link if you have one. I can probably setup a oneliner script for it too.

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Thanks. Just got to wrap up a few bits and bobs and then i’ll chuck it on dropbox. Possibly on tuesday/weds with a view to releasing the following week.

I’ll upload the complete file set just to rule out me releasing with missing files.

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Looking back at the Dragon fight @travus

I’d say you’re an advanced player when it comes to combat, so I’m a little worried if you were dying/chugging heals a lot. Indeed, I have often referred to your gameplay coverage for a benchmark of where the difficulty lies and made adjustments later.

Can you recall a recurring cause of party wipe-out or a certain point in the battle when it seems to occur?

Possibilities as I see it;

  • The spawn in of tentacles between rounds with the dragon; potentially nasty in a big situation as this.
    EDIT: Disregard; final battle uses tentacles that summon and others that heal the dragon.

  • The dragons cold nuke attack; very nasty but should be rare and on a cooldown. None the less, this attack unleashed on an injured party could wipe them out.

Of all the mods I’ve played that have boss creatures at the end, yours is certainly the most unique! That’s why I like it :slight_smile: If you have to reload multiple times to figure out how to defeat the creature, then you have done something right! I always think back at the other mods I’ve played and felt so disappointed at the final boss creature that I was able to kill so easily - Misery Stone comes to mind.
I think the way you did it is the standard. You give hints to stay away from the cold damage impact area. The B&B gives info on how best to kill the creatures, including the tentacles. Failing to take heed of that is not the mod’s fault. Additionally, you have a large party of companions with which to try different tactics - That’s a huge plus in itself. And the breaks in between the fight give you a chance to heal and put up more buffs. I found your method to be very immersive on top of everything. It’s not just another hack-n-slash fight, and the game is over. In your mod, you really have to use your head and micro things to win. That’s the sign of a great mod!
Like I said, I had to reload a couple times on hardcore difficulty, trying different tactics, to beat the final boss. Killing the tentacles first was very important. Using elemental resistance type spells/potions/items is very useful. One thing’s for sure, if Ivan dies, you’re really screwed! I did use plenty healing (especially mass heals) and res’s from him. I learned to protect him at all cost!

Bottom line, don’t change anything. Players can always reduce the difficulty slider if it’s too tough.

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Okay, that’s actually very reassuring because you are describing what my intentions were when building it, ie. the breaks, hints etc. It’s a big ending for a big game and I think it pulls it off. I’ll see how my run throughs go. Maybe fine tuning the presentation and things like hints will be all it needs.

I don’t know if you had a poke around the scripts running the dragon. It was my first attempt messing around with AI myself. It took a couple of months to get done but hopefully its a template I can build on for future big encounters, cause there will be many more.

Clearly the whole party is needed for this encounter, so maybe that answers the need of having all companions on hand. I think I will ditch that teaser scene at the end, or perhaps just focus it on the player. It sounds daft maybe, but I need the party utterly split up for the events following to make sense.

Thanks for the link, looking forward to playing.

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@travus, re; Silverdelve pit cells (ep 60 of your LP). Did you still have problems with getting the whole party up/down the cells with the rope?

Yep, it played out again almost the same as in the LP. I was toying around with the related dialog files a bit and found that setting the ‘fFormationTightness’ parameter to 0.2 will get the whole party down to the cell without scattering them.
I wonder if the ‘edge’ and ‘wall’ objects shouldn’t be scaled slightly larger so they are more obvious?

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Ok, i’ll have a tinker with that. Already noted I need to make the edge/wall points more obvious :slight_smile:

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@travus; copy of IP definitive edition has been DM’d to you!

braces for a list of stuff he’s broken

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I seem to be missing some files… I have all the required haks in my folder, but im getting blank tiles in a small number of areas. I think this has happened to me before but I can’t remember how I resolved it.

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Have you made any changes to the 2da files? I’m just using the stock UA haks/2das and everything is visible.

No changes to tile related 2das. Maybe there is a duplicate somewhere…

Sorted. A duplicate tiles.2da was to blame :smiley:

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It’s time for an update.

At this moment, Indanthrine Prince is in the process of being given a final look-over, just to be sure nothing has been broken or overlooked. I am pleased I decided to do this because… I broke it. Entirely my fault - apologies to @travus . Taking numerous breaks from NWN2 has emptied my head, but I’m getting there. I will be getting a few things put right later. Then hopefully @travus can enjoy the fruits of our labours. Anyway, once this process is completed, IP will be uploaded to the vault and nexus. I would like this to be this coming Sunday/Monday, but I will delay if necessary. I want the installation process to be as simple as possible, so there will be less individual files to go hunting for this time.

Umbral Abyss continues to be the many tentacled monster I knew it would be. Work progresses at a good pace. @travus has produced a large collection of patches across the entire campaign already, which have given it a much needed polish, particularly around management of the party; the one liner system is much better, trigger-glitch free and much more immersive; xp awards, item checks/gives/takes are now much better managed - which in turn help eliminate certain cases where plots could break or not function as intended.

My own first playtest (rogue) is still ongoing, getting towards the end of act 2. Not including the core changes (e.g. Conjurer class) introduced in IP which I want to bring to UA, I currently have a list of 64 things to fix or improve. I have also identified a small number of things I want to expand upon in small but significant ways.

There’s been a few discussions concerning the 3rd part of UA with regards to difficulty and continuity heading into the final campaign. I was concerned that the finale and it’s buildup was too intense - possibly an overreaction on my part. At this time I feel I have been convinced that the intensity is a strength, rather than weakness; plenty of hints are given, along with means to prepare and respond to challenges. I’ll make the final call when I playtest it myself, but I’m optimistic I’ll only be making minor adjustments to presentation more than anything else.

As for continuity, I think I have settled on what I need to do to make the start of the next campaign work. I need to split the party up after the events in the finale. (Avoiding spoilers as much as possible) There is a teaser scene at the end which prevents that - it in fact suggests that the party is still very much together. I will be scrapping this scene, re-writing a section of the ending and then actually giving you control of your character for what amounts to the teaser itself, which will set us up beautifully for the final part of the saga…

It feels like such a trivial thing to be going on about. But no matter how many attempts I have made to create the final campaign, I keep getting tripped up by the ending of UA. In terms of story it tied my hands and I could never answer all of the questions relating to the PC and each of the companions in a way that satisfied me. It all felt a little too convenient and didn’t do the momentous events that came before it any justice. One goal of this huge update project besides giving these campaigns the love they needed, was to answer this burning question - and I believe I now have the answer.

To finish, I’ll mention the final campaign once more. Something to reassure, knowing that a long, long road lies ahead. Despite multiple failed attempts; I have a treasure trove of perfectly viable areas and NPCs waiting to be used. Just some repurposing needed :slight_smile:

Thank you for following the progress. Indanthrine Prince will be back and better than ever very soon.

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I have all of the new IP files and I’m starting to go through as a Conjurer to see how everything is with all the latest fixes.
I did run into an issue though: In the module file there is a file called ‘guid.gff’. What is that file for? The reason I ask is because I ran into a savegame crash early in the playthrough. I suspected that that gff is the culprit causing the crash so I deleted it. Sure enough, the savegame crash stopped. I’m just not sure if that file was required for something?
The new music is great! It really works well with the immersion. With all the fixes it seems like a very smooth game so far. I noticed a couple minor cutscene bugs that I already fixed. I’ll also be implementing the one-liner method where appropriate.

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That’s a relief! I think I just made some goofy mistake when I was putting everything together for the vault.

The approach I took to Conjurer with IP was to have a small selection of specialised items; int bonuses, wands, scrolls, etc, but I didn’t go too mad as the class has been given medium BAB progression. If we wanted to exclusify magic more, I could go back and make the various staffs and wands conjurer only, but this didn’t seem urgent.

I don’t know anything about that file. Certainly haven’t created or purposefully put it there. Maybe a remnant of the campaign files merge I did early on in the update. I’ll remember to delete it on my end.

Glad you like the soundtracks. I only put a few in; the theme in several versions; drums only, trumpets only, strings only and then a remix for the finale. Fairfields has its own day/night track along with an ambient track for the attack event.

I suppose you can either ping me your patches again or just fire back the mod file with your changes.

As for the one liner system; how do I use it? I expect I will be adding some new lines to UA and the final campaign will definitely be using this.

IP now has a short trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKhyQ0OReXU&ab_channel=BumblingBrit

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The one-liner system I used, I have to admit, has become quite cumbersome. There’s just a hell-of-a lot of them! If you open the ‘merp_trsn_random_companion’ script in UA, you’ll see what I’m talking about. For the current one-liners of UA it works great. Especially when multiple companions appear to be having a conversation with each other. But any new one-liners would probably have to be done using some kind of a new, more simplified method. Hell, just using a simple trigger with a script that fires a ActionSpeakString on a random companion might be a lot better.
It looks like the one-liners in IP will be very easy to set-up - they aren’t multi-line one-liners like in UA.