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Joining a Persistent World can be difficult, and most don't exactly know where to begin.
Deciding the World To JoinEdit
This is the hardest part, and the method of finding a world, as well as the correct instructions to get started. This is a hidden gem of the game, which makes the game go from a set number of hours to unlimited gameplay. Once the proper files are installed, and an installer set up to synchronize the files, playing on persistent worlds is actually quite easy. Alternatively a player can join a simpler Multiplayer game which involves a module or an official campaign.
Sources of InformationEdit
The following locations list Persistent Worlds, and provide information on what is needed to join persistent worlds
- The NWN2 Client Extension restores the in-game server browser and allows the list of active PWs to be browsed from within the game client.
- NWNList provides a list of currently active PWs, alongside with links to their websites and direct connect IP addresses. It is intended to replace the no longer functional Gamespy.
- NWN2 Persistent Worlds & Multiplayer
- NWVault provides both hosting of PW files, as well as a listing of available worlds. Those with high ratings from the community have been put in the Hall of Fame.
- GameSpy support for NWN2 is discontinued. Use the NWN2 Client Extension which restores server browser functionality instead.
Things to look for in Persistent WorldsEdit
- Clear instructions on how to install files and play on the server.
- Is a manual download necessary, or is an autodownloader available?
- Is the server "Override Free"? The use of overrides means the player has to figure out how to remove any installed files prior to playing on other persistent worlds.
- What is the server's vision - is it roleplay or action oriented?
- Are the players and admins involved in the community? Are they responsive when there is a problem?
- How many players and DM's are active?
Find Instructions on Their WebsiteEdit
The server admin should have detailed instructions on how to join their server. In addition they will most likely give some level of assistance after registering and asking for help on their forums. Not every world is consistent in providing good instructions, however.
There are three primary methods that PW's use to prepare their files. The following links are instructions provided for persistent worlds to customize, but players might be able to use them if the persistent world they wish to join has too little information. If their information is not clear please inform them that these templates are available for them to customize.
Make sure you don't have files from the vault or other servers installedEdit
A Persistent world is designed to run with a specific set of files which they will provide for you to play with. Having the wrong files can cause issues when you play, especially with files in your override or ui directories. The first time you play on a given world you should remove ALL such files. It is recommended that the first time you join a world that you inspect these folders for files you downloaded from the vault, or ones that happen to have been put there by other persistent worlds. If you've used other worlds that use an installer such as WorldGate, Audolo, or something else there is a good chance something is in your folder you do not know about.
How to inspect for other filesEdit
- Navigate to your "<Program Files>\Atari\Neverwinter Nights 2\Override" and make sure this folder is empty. This generally has nothing in it, and remember in the future that all files should go into your player folders override folder. The UI folder next to Override tends to not be touched either, but if you've changed things here you usually have to reinstall to get things sorted out. Just remember ""Leave your Program Folder like Obsidian gave it to you"".
- Navigate to "<My Documents>\Neverwinter Nights 2\". Look for the file dialog.tlk, if it exists remove it.
- Navigate to "<My Documents>\Neverwinter Nights 2\override". Everything in this folder should be removed
- Navigate to "<My Documents>\Neverwinter Nights 2\ui". This folder should contain two folders, "custom" and "default". "default" should only contain the file "guisettings.ini" which holds your camera settings, and custom should be completely empty.
If you look and it is like i describe it above, then you are ready to install. Just remember that you could be installing files to the above places so you should reinspect afterward as you will not want to use the files they install when you play solo or on other persistent worlds. For more information on this issue please see PW Override Problems
Exceptions to the ruleEdit
Less Obtrusive Spell Buffs is one exception to all this. ( See PW Player Guidelines ) Other files may or may not be allowed, and you should discuss this with the admins of your persistent world. Remember you are in their house, and you should treat them with respect, having the wrong files can cause issues to everyone playing on the server and not just you.
Why is this an issueEdit
The wrong files being used actually make it so there is basically two version of the game being played. Portions are done in the client ( your computer ) and others are done on the server itself ( the persistent world ). Some would assume that this could give a player an advantage, but the server is more than capable of correcting the client. But each time it does this it uses a lot of bandwidth to sort out the issue. If this happens on a server that is hosted from someones home, this can fill up the connection. The result is your client crashing and/or lag being experienced by all the players on said world. Also some of these files actually trigger bugs in the obsidian engine, which can cause crashing the entire server, which means ALL the players lose what they were doing. This is a major source of crashing, not the only one of course, but one that is preventable.
Install PWC and any Needed FilesEdit
Run the installer, if you are manually installing, or wish to know where files go the following might help you. Many times files are compressed and programs like 7zip http://www.7-zip.org/ which can decompress multiple formats are needed. ( .rar, .zip, .gzip, .tar are examples of extensions for compressed files )
All files go in the your "Neverwinter Nights 2" folder which sits inside your "My Documents" folder. The only file you will always install is the PWC file.
- Files ending in PWC go in My Documents\Neverwinter Nights 2\pwc
- Files ending in HAK go in My Documents\Neverwinter Nights 2\hak
- Files ending in TLK go in My Documents\Neverwinter Nights 2\tlk
- If the file ingamegui.ini is included, it must be placed in My Documents\Neverwinter Nights 2\ui\default
- Other files go into the "Override" and "UI" Folders in the "Neverwinter Nights 2" folder. If in doubt, put them in the Override Folder, most likely they will work in override even if they normally go in the UI folder. It is highly recommended to make a folder for the said Persistent World inside the override folder to keep things organized. Please remember to remove these files before playing on another Persistent World.
Make sure your files are updated periodically. Generally running the installer each day when you start. Those doing manual updates will most likely have to check on the worlds website for information on when they update.
Connect to the Game Via Gamespy.Edit
- Launch Neverwinter Nights 2
- On the main menu, choose Multiplayer
- If you have not logged in before, choose "Create New Account" and fill out the form. The "Bioware Community Name" that you choose will also create an account for you in the NWN2 forums. Click OK when done.
- If you have already created an account, enter your username and password. Click "Sign In" when done.
- Click "Join Internet Game"
- Browse through the servers by choosing the Game Type section for the world world. Make sure to wait a second or two after you choose a different game type, so that the list has time to load. You should already have an idea of the section they are in by the information they already provided.
- Click "Connect"
- Make your character, and start playing!
Making things work wellEdit
The following are things that make your experience much better when you play on persistent worlds and make your experience smooth and avoid many problems for both yourself and the server you play on.