Oh where, oh where could they be? I was just thinking as I clack away at the keyboard, 'I wonder where the old NWNO crew are?'
To bring the past crashing back, throughout the NWN1 (and early NWN2) days, I was involved in NWNOnline in developing a seamless area transition, massive, scaled Cormyr PW.
(better imagemap here; Arabel and Eveningstar are good hotspots to click on).
Anyhow, over the years of tireless hours of area creation (and tweaking, and tweaking, ahahand tweaking!), finding more Realmslore and making sure things matched, there were some areas that weren't covered, not canon, ripe for the picking. In those areas of creative latitude, I wanted to make sure certain plot dependent names weren't 'rip-offs' that were referenced somewhere else.
I decided that every name I injected into larger storylines as NPC's, areas, etc, had to be original. I did quite a few Yahoo!, and Google, and Ask, and other searches to make sure things were unpublished. Now, I had quite a few of these that I had held for some time when I was planning my own persistent world after the announcement of the then upcoming breakthrough game Neverwinter Nights. I decided since I had shelved that whole project to work on a crazy, distributed server, to scale Cormyr (which was never to the level of grandness as the original paper idea as far as infrastructure, but morphed into something slightly cooler IMO), those names/terms were fair game.
Then NWN2 drew closer and I was slapped in the face, "What do you mean walkmesh files have to be downloaded on every exterior edit?" It seemed as if my days of constant changing and shaping hadn't gained a new set of wings, it had instead had their wings clipped. I just couldn't foresee forcing players to constantly download new files just because of my endless editing, "Great, twinkles toes must have done some texture brush adjustments...again. Looks like another download."
So I decided to blow the dust off my early early notes on my own planned PW from before I fell in with the then NWNO crew (on the IGN boards which were the original defacto meeting place thanks to the vault which has always been there like a beacon of hope) and take another look. There was a lot there, plenty of gaming world diversity in the half-done setting, but the stage hadn't been set. Since Persistent Worlds didn't seem like a viable option for the moment, and I had no idea what it felt like to stamp something finished (actually, although I haven't updated part I in awhile, I still somewhat see it as a WIP), I decided to try my hand at a single player adventure.
Perhaps I should have started out small. One little self contained adventure, a tutorial one-shot if you will. Time just wasn't on my side I suppose, I just thought of the early work on NWN2 Cormyr and the time that would be chalked up as 'lost', uploaded a few areas to the vault as prefabs, and went for the jugular.
Anyhow, in the re-invention/re-invigoration of a long forgotten idea, I decided to reclaim certain names. Names that had been reserved for a time for Cormyr, but had since faded to antiquity. I had plagiarized myself, stolen my old unique intellectual property, and I wanted it back!
My point is, if any of those old NWNO Cormyr players are still out there, and were privy to the larger plot elements, you are totally not allowed to tell others:
"Ruins of Kazatharis? That was the name of the Half-Ogre Mage tyrant that was leading the goblinkin of the slain devil-dragon against Arabel? Dude, WTF?"
All I have to say to that is:
"Oh, no no, it's cool, I'm taking it back." -Randal Graves
Yeah, that's right. It's coming back to where it started. Don't you mess this up for me! No squealing about the vagrant plagiarism that goes on between me, myself, and I.
I, back then, wrote it for this, before I took it for the middle. So I am reclaiming from myself, for myself, to vindicate myself once and for all.
Why you ask? Because linear time is an illusion. Because taking immediate gains in a 'pay-later because that person later really isn't the me that's now' mentality just doesn't work. Because I'm clearing my self-karma. Mainly, because I can't sue myself (probably because nobody has ever tried it).
Let's just pretend that like Peter Parker's marriage to Mary Jane, it just never happened.
Enough rambling, it's friday night, big-ups to Cormyr, but I have some old-old business to attend to. *fires up toolset*
Sands of Solvheil Series
Design Document for Sands of Solvheil I: The Ruins of Kazatharis
Design Document for Sands of Solvheil II: Beneath the Hearleforne
Design Document for Sands of Solvheil III: Crusaders of Shalihir