I was first exposed to this game at a UCLA ID Tech Camp in summer 2011 when we attended a camp for game development. they were using the NWN2's Aurora Toolset as the basis of the training camp. I made my character in their, and got to do some awesome level design! When the camp was over, my dad had wrote back to the one of the camp counselors (Snarf was his name I believe, lol, the counselors used nicknames) how much I enjoyed the program and the game we learned on, and how much I expressed I wanted to play it. I believe he wrote my dad back that he would let us purchase a copy of the game from him if I wanted to. Of course, I said YES, and they sent us a used copy of NWN2 platinum edition. It was torn and a little chewed, but I didn't care, I wanted to try making worlds again! That's what NWN2 did to me, it allowed my imagination to run wild. I hadn't actually played much of the base game until a few months later, when my middle school gave it's students Dell Latitude laptops with Windows installed.
NWN2 Platinum edition was a mess to install. To be fair, I was only a 13 year old boy, I did NOT know what I was doing. But when I actually managed to get it installed, holy **** was I ever happy. This game brought me so many hours of endless joy and happiness. I didn't know who the characters I was using in the Toolset were back in summer camp, so when I actually met them for the first time on my laptop I was so ecstatic.
A lot of other factors play into this game becoming my all time favorite game, and not just my developing love for the fantasy genre. Firstly, this was probably my first ever "adult" game. By that I mean, it was the first game that I ever played that had adult oriented themes of alcohol references, strong language, sexual themes, and graphic violence. It was a huge shocker to me when (spoiler) in the first couple of hours in the play through one of the MC's childhood friends died right in front of them. That had never happened to me before in a game. I never knew at the time that games could get that dark, it was a lot for my little head to wrap around. I was just excited to play this game, I didn't know I'd get traumatized in the first few hours, lol.
I was also really in love with the cast of characters I met along the way, Khelgar of course being my favorite. But I loved everyone, Neeshka, Elanee, and Khelgar were all my favorites.
I may have spoiled myself a few times when looking this games ending up because I honestly didn't think I'd finish this massive 50 hour campaign. Big mistake, but I still enjoyed myself. And even when I knew the fates and or potential betrayals that were going to happen, it didn't stop me from liking the characters in which those things happen to.
The romance... Oh boy, this is a big one. To veteran RPG players, the fact that male MC's only get one potential love interest was a bad aspect of this game. But I don't care about that stuff...
Elanee was my first ever gaming romance.
And I don't care what anyone says about lack of choices for romance, this was a big moment for me, because it showed me what games could really do.
She had a profound effect on me and what I felt possible for video games, and so anyone else that came after, I always remember Elanee as a template for that. She is a fond memory I have in my life, and I wouldn't trade it in for any other game.
Good things couldn't last forever though. Around 2013 to 2014, my laptop died on me. I didn't have the money to buy a new dell laptop, let alone find one with Windows XP installed on it. My dad got me a MacBook Air, which I still use to this day, to replace the other one that broke down.
And so, for 6 whole years, the game just sat on my shelf, collecting dust. It travelled with me to college, and spent 2 of those years in my droor.
I had changed A LOT since I played that game as a kid. I had gone through many life experiences since then: prom, my first kiss, graduation, college. By then, I was so caught up with school, that I had all but given up on videogames... And yet, it was still always in the back of my head.
Fast forward to 2020 - the pandemic hits - everyone is bunkering up in their homes and the world has become isolated. By this time, I had started to reconnect with my love of video games. I had played the most recent titles... And yet, I felt I was missing something.
Then, my dad gets me an early birthday present, it's a gaming PC Laptop... With Windows XP installed. After all these years, he still remembered how much I wanted to play my old game. I plop my old game disk into the laptop.... And I am hit with a sense of... Nostalgia. And it was powerful.
It was like meeting an old friend for the first time in years, rediscovering your beginnings.
To this day, no other game has made me feel like this, And I owe it all to the people who made this game. Yes, it has it's bugs, and glitches, but this is one of those games that defined me as a person.
Ah, the power of re-releases. I remember my disappointment when NWN 2 first came out. It was a buggy mess and first half of the campaign scared many players away from this title.
Now, after nearly 10 years of polishment form both Obsidian and especially fans, NWN 2 is pinnacle of CRPG experience. It offers everything to everyone who has at least some inclinations to play RPGs. Want a good story-driven experience? Play original campaign, Mask of the Betrayer, Mysteries of Westgate. Want a more free-roam experience? Storm of Zehir is for you. Want both? Grab some of the dozens high-quality fan-made modules from Neverwinter Nexus. You basically get dozens of games for the price of one.
Whichever campaign you play, whatever race and class you choose, you will have fun. Every character is unique, RPG system and character development is so good you will feel the urge to advance just-one-more-level before you go to sleep. Companion banter in OC, MotB and MoW is witty and funny. Fighter, rogue and caster classes are all equally fun to play, which is something of a miracle in DnD-based computer CRPGs.
I would like to point out one more thing and that is Mask of the Betrayer. MotB is the best RPG experience Obsidian ever made, hands down. Excellent story with truly epic moments can rival even BG2 and Planescape: Torment. The game would be worth its price even for MotB alone.
All in all, if you have never played NWN 2 before and want to give CRPGs a try, grab a copy of NWN2 Complete on GoG. You will get hundreds if not thousands of hours of very enjoyable gaming experience.
For $20 (on Steam anyway) you get Neverwinter Nights 2 and both expansion packs (Mask of the Betrayer, Storm of Zehir). It's a fantastic value. I sank 100 hours or so into the main campaign and the Betrayer expansion before feeling like I needed to step away from it for a while. If you enjoy single-player RPGs and/or the D&D 3.5 Edition rule set, this game is for you.
Even after a couple years of patches, some bugs remain in the main campaign. If you save often (in multiple slots) you shouldn't have any poblems with getting "stuck" due to bugs. 9/10 for the game itself, but -1 for bugs.
Disappointing... :( Expected too much from this game probably. But it is too bugged for a final product. For example - you cannot save over the same Save file - or your save file will become corrupted! I mean 0 come on!.. The game itself is a little too complicated for newcomers - all the detailed D&D system will be a pain in the but for players who never played RPG's.
SummaryNeverwinter Nights 2 Platinum includes Neverwinter Nights 2 and two official expansion packs: Mask of the Betrayer and Storm of Zehir. Everything you do has a meaning Rediscover familiar locations and old friends from the Neverwinter Nights series. Create and host your own solo and multiplayer D&D® adventures using the improved