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Mysteries of Westgate Review

A review of the new Neverwinter Nights 2 DLC "Mysteries of Westgate".

Mysteries of Westgate is made by Ossian Studios. It was originally completed around the same time as Mask of the Betrayer and The Witcher. It was delayed because of problems with the implementation of DRM.

My expectations were high. I was expecting something similar to the excellent
Darkness over Daggerford. The thing that I most impressed by was not in that game.

MoW has very well defined party members. Their personalities seem to been designed to play off each other. They argue with each other about how tasks should be solved. Their deep personal beliefs keep them from liking each other. They have personality defining problems that get resolved before the end of the main plot. Your choices and personality change their character. The dialog is well written and in many cases also has good voice acting along with it. I was very impressed by this part of the game because of its quality and its uniqueness compared to other games.

Like Darkness over Daggerford there are many optional quests. They are well designed and written. They are mostly short. There are memorable moments and interesting NPCs in the quests.

The area design is very good. There are many ambient NPCs filling the city areas. The diversity of races in the city is very impressive. The interiors have detailed object placement. I wish more was done with lighting but most modules and the official campaigns don't do much with it either. A few of the areas with combat in them have objects cluttering the space. The pathfinding in NWN2 has a lot of trouble with this.

The main plot is well designed but has a disappointing story. It doesn't start getting interesting until the very end and then it gets complicated in a X-Files meets Scooby Doo kind of way. The villains don't have the character development that the party members have. They are just random evil people fighting with each other.

The only interesting combat I found was in optional arena fights. It isn't Icewind Dale. The official campaigns don't have much interesting combat either so it isn't a big surprise. The TonyK AI added with the Storm of Zehir does make a big difference in playability of all of NWN2 combat though. Its very noticeable after working with nwn1 again.

Mysteries of Westgate has well written characters in a well built city. It isn't a epic dungeon crawl. If you enjoy exploring cities and character development its great.



My latest competed project is Deadening 2 for NWN2. Its a short atmospheric hack and slash.

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