Academy for Modding Excellence
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
  Home    Forum    Help    Search    Login    Register  
*
News : MEMBERS WANTED!

Players & Builders of NWN & NWN2 needed to join the AME panel
October 15, 2019, 06:52:09 AM
+  Academy for Modding Excellence
|-+  Academy of Modding Excellence Public Forums
| |-+  Academy for Modding Excellence News
| | |-+  Golden Dragon Interview: Adam Miller
Advanced search
  0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
Pages 1 Go Down
Author
Topic: Golden Dragon Interview: Adam Miller  (Read 8733 times)
« on: August 17, 2008, 09:52:09 PM »
BenWH Offline
Inactive Member
Gold-tinted Silver Dragon
*
Posts: 945



Adam Miller, Veteran Author Golden Dragonh winner, was a familiar name in the Neverwinter Nights 1 community for many years, but with the advent of NWN2, he was one of the first 'established' authors to make the move. We found out about the challenges he faced and the inspiration behind Dark Waters, which picked up the Best Adventure Golden Dragon award for NWN2.

What made you start building modules in the first place?
I have fond memories of reading through D&D module books as a kid, and I have a long history of playing CRPGs.  When I heard Bioware was making a "build your own adventure" game, it sounded like a perfect match for my interests.  I spent a couple years writing dialog and making maps before NWN1 was even released.  Once I started, it was hard to stop.

What are the key differences between building in NWN1 & NWN2, and which do you prefer?
The thing everyone mentions about NWN1 is that area creation was so much faster, while NWN2 gives you greater flexibility at the cost of lots more time.  It seemed that with NWN1, the design goal was to make things so easy that even Trent's grandmother could make a module.  With NWN2, the tools are more complex, but they have lots more capabilities.

In terms of the highly technical differences, I find it hard to work with NWN2's animation system (I've yet to make any animated placeable).  On the other hand, I've loved working with NWN2's GUI system.  Without it, things like Lute Hero would be impossible.  I really like the look of NWN2's graphics, which I think were designed to hold up for years after the game was released.

Can you tell us a little more about the inspiration for Dark Waters?
Long ago when NWN1 was starting their digital distribution project, I had pitched a "psionic pirate" idea to them.  It didn't pan out, but I loved the ideas and wanted to use some of them for a NWN2 campaign.  I enjoyed the concept of self-discovery in Planescape: Torment, and there's a recurring theme of remembering the past that runs throughout Dark Waters.

In terms of specific gameplay elements, you'll find pieces of Sid Meier's Pirates!, Magic the Gathering, Guitar Hero, Bookworm Adventures, Desktop Defense, Zork, and probably a dozen others.

What's the 'best bit' in the series (for you)?
For whatever reason, the Pirate Card game is something that I can still play even to this day.  After scripting, testing, and tweaking something, it's very hard to tell if it's fun.  The Pirate Card game turned into this huge, complicated thing that I spend months working on, but I can still sit down and play it for pure enjoyment.

From a player's perspective, the best thing about the series overall is likely the huge variety in gameplay.  While there are traditional hack and slash portions of the campaign, I've tried hard to surprise the player with what lies around the corner.  The final act in Dark Waters lets players do a lot of unusual things, from thrashing tunes in Lute Hero to killing enemies with your spelling prowess in Alphabet Assault.

You like bending the NWN2 electron engine. What has been the most satisfying/frustrating thing you've tried to do (take your pick!)?
The most satisfying was making Lute Hero into something that actually worked.  It was an insane concept, barely possible with the NWN2 engine.  There were serious problems with accurate timing, getting the GUI functioning, and encoding the notes into a 2da format.  Many times I considered throwing in the towel, but it turned into something I was proud of.  Josh Sawyer talked about Lute Hero specifically when he went to the GDC in Paris a couple months ago, which seemed like a good sign that it turned out well.

The most frustrating thing is my inability to make animated models.  I think I just need to hunker down and go over the tutorials again.  I know it can be done, but just need to find a way to make it happen.

What did you think when you first heard about the Golden Dragon Awards?
I really like the idea of a short list of recommended modules.  For folks like me who rarely get the chance to play anything, it's often easiest to start with the highly recommended games and work my way through them.  

Have you ever tried the other Golden Dragon winners?
The sad reality of my life is that I don't think I've played a single NWN2 module other than the official campaign.  Every free moment I spend with NWN2 is taken up by working on Dark Waters.  With NWN1, I had the chance to play a few other highly rated modules and was impressed at the wonderful talent of the community.  I'm sure the same exists now, if only I had the time to enjoy it.

What are you up to currently?
I continue to work away at the final act of Dark Waters, juggling voice actors, and writing dialog.  There's a ton of people helping with Dark Waters, from testers to voice actors, so I continue to work with them to help get everything finished up.

I just finished making a text adventure side quest for DW3.  It brings back fond memories of Zork, typing "get lamp" and "go north".  I'm trying hard to make this final act the most diverse and rich, full of interesting characters and locations.  Some of the places you get to visit are strange and wonderful, and I'm excited to show them off to people.

Thanks for the interview Adam. We're looking forward to seeing what you come up with next!
Logged

B G P Hughes
NWN and NWN2 works: Click Here

Wyvern Crown of Cormyr
 
Reply #1
« on: August 18, 2008, 01:07:27 PM »
sirchet Offline
Silver Dragon
*****
Force For Goodness Posts: 528

WWW

Thanks for the great interview.

Wow, a text rpg...coooooooool!
Logged

Help is good when asked for,
better when needed.


Neverwinter Reviewers Guild

Gaming Parents Studios
 
Reply #2
« on: August 18, 2008, 01:44:59 PM »
Tybae Offline
AME Whippinig Boy
Administrator
Platinum Dragon
*****
Devourer of Worlds, Lover of Kittens Posts: 2010



Text RPG's?  I remember playing Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy on my Apple IIc.  That was a great game. 

Great interview, Adam.  I'm looking forward to your next ventures in NWN2. 
Logged

I live by the motto:  "Safety 3rd"
 
Reply #3
« on: August 19, 2008, 03:49:32 AM »
BenWH Offline
Inactive Member
Gold-tinted Silver Dragon
*
Posts: 945



If we're going to show our age here, I used to write text adventures (and even programme moving sprites) on the ZX Spectrum. Anyone remember those?
Logged

B G P Hughes
NWN and NWN2 works: Click Here

Wyvern Crown of Cormyr
 
Reply #4
« on: August 19, 2008, 06:46:50 AM »
Tybae Offline
AME Whippinig Boy
Administrator
Platinum Dragon
*****
Devourer of Worlds, Lover of Kittens Posts: 2010



This ZX Spectrum Grin
Logged

I live by the motto:  "Safety 3rd"
 
Reply #5
« on: August 19, 2008, 08:48:45 AM »
kookoo Offline
Public Forum Moderator
Brass Dragon
***
My Brass Dragon has Brass Balls Posts: 146

WWW

This is the computer I learned on in high school.  We learned how to write DOS and PASCAL.

http://oldcomputers.net/kayproii.html
Logged

"Saving the world is hard, saving yourself is even harder.

496620796f752063616e207265616420746869732c20796f75206172652061206765656b2e
 
Reply #6
« on: August 19, 2008, 01:36:27 PM »
sirchet Offline
Silver Dragon
*****
Force For Goodness Posts: 528

WWW

Oh yeah! mines older. heh heh
« Last Edit: August 19, 2008, 01:38:51 PM by sirchet » Logged

Help is good when asked for,
better when needed.


Neverwinter Reviewers Guild

Gaming Parents Studios
 
Reply #7
« on: August 19, 2008, 01:56:55 PM »
Tybae Offline
AME Whippinig Boy
Administrator
Platinum Dragon
*****
Devourer of Worlds, Lover of Kittens Posts: 2010



Hey, Chet, wasn't it more like this?



LOL!
Logged

I live by the motto:  "Safety 3rd"
 
Reply #8
« on: August 20, 2008, 02:05:27 PM »
sirchet Offline
Silver Dragon
*****
Force For Goodness Posts: 528

WWW

You found it!! I looked everywhere for that, was my first lap-top.


Tybae is a funny guy!
Logged

Help is good when asked for,
better when needed.


Neverwinter Reviewers Guild

Gaming Parents Studios
 
Print  Pages 1 Go Up
« previous next »
Jump to: