In September we asked you to share your favourite moments from an Obsidian game and we, on behalf of Paradox, dangled prizes in front of you in return: consoles for the two winners, PC Pillars of Eternity and Tyranny keys for the 10 runners-up. And you answered in your droves.
Everyone has a drawer they can't close because it's stuffed too full of things. Mine has a whisk which always stops the bloody drawer from closing, and it's really annoying, but Obsidian Entertainment's drawer has around 100 game proposals in it. Game outlines in various states, from two-page snacks to 60-page feasts. "There's tons of them," Obsidian co-owner Chris Parker tells me. And for Obsidian there was never a time of greater need of an idea than summer 2012, after Microsoft cancelled Xbox One launch game Stormlands, and when South Park: The Stick of Truth was onboard THQ's sinking ship. It spurred a period now referred to in Obsidian history as the Summer of Proposals.
Have you ever wondered what your doctor thinks about while they're poking and prodding you? If you lived in Edmonton, Canada, in the mid '90s there's a chance your doctor was thinking, "Gee, I wish I was making computer games instead of rummaging inside this diseased colon". At least, that's how it might have played out if you were the patient of Dr Greg Zeschuk, Dr Ray Muzyka or Dr Augustine Yip. And if you had a diseased colon.
The map won't scroll.
The problem is always time.
We're in Hammersmith, London. We're here to see Neverwinter Nights 2. We're watching Obsidian's Feargus Urquhart, veteran commander in chief and ex of Black Isle, walk us through the game. He shows us the improved graphics engine. He shows us some of the new mechanics, adding direct control of a party rather than the Mr Lonesome of the original Neverwinter Nights. He leads us through the improved Neverwinter tool-set, showing the increased power and accessibility of this next generation of the world's foremost roleplaying game creation tool.
Those who read me regularly will know that while I support goblins, elves, magi and whatnot and uphold them fully, there's little record of the words 'Dungeons' and 'Dragons' ever being thrust firmly enough together that I've been gaily trapped in their midst for any length of time. I dabbled in Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance, but that's about the extent of it, and not exactly a badge of honour in the dark recesses of the Internet to which this link's likely to propagate. What in the name of all the dice that have more than six sides, then, you're wondering, am I doing writing about Neverwinter Nights 2?