Cormyr and the Dalelands
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Cormyr and the Dalelands

Post by Winterhawk99 »

Cormyr and the Dalelands.

This review took me an exceptionally long time to put down on paper. I do not like giving bad reviews, especially on popular servers. Cormyr and the Dalelands is a popular server however it has a lot of problems. There are some very good things. Unfortunately, the problems seem to overshadow the good points.

I did not stay on the server awfully long. About a week, week and a half before I realized that I no longer wanted to play on it. So, let’s look as some of the good things about it.

It’s a pretty world. It’s not as pretty as Harvest Moon or Alagara Rising but it is built with an eye on aesthetics. There are also a lot of custom content models that were new and interesting to me. I’ve seen all the tilesets which were picked well for the general area of Cormyr and the Dales as per forgotten realms lore. There are however a lot of excessively large areas that add a lot of load and lag to the server, along with their Ai. But I will get to that. It is a pretty world though. One of the better ones that I have seen as late.

This was the first world where I had custom scaling done on my character. This was a great surprise to me. My test character Lauriella is 5’ 8’’. The server has an ooc room where you can scale your pc through conversation with an npc. That was really cool. So Lauriella ended up 5 foot 8 inches and ended up almost as tall as most of the humans on the server. If you don’t have this feature get it. Its well worth it.

The players themselves are excellent rpers and often look out for one another. There is a big reason for this and why I was so perplexed for the first few days on the server wandering around and meeting them. Being a heavy rp server there are also a lot of Canon lawyers. They do have their place in a heavy rp world. People like to keep Fr, forgotten realms. I stymie them a little testing them on their lore. They and I took it well. The Canon lawyers here are more gentle than other places. They will gently nudge you in tells why something cant be or why. I caught them on a question of Mulhorand slavery how pharaoh in the year xxx freed them all. They laughed and said well that is true but we only go to 3.5. Ok that’s not so bad. So, I think the lawyers are alright for the most part.

As long as they aren’t in your face, I think its ok and these were like I said very gentle with players.

The world has many prc and other custom spells that for the most part work. They have a working teleport and mass teleport spell along with many other spells you would not normally see on a world. That’s a great thing especially the teleport spells. The one spell I found that did not work and is a big part of Lauriella’s history is phantom steed. I asked about it and the admins said they turned it off because they could not get the fly widget to work. Fair enough. I can accept that. There’s always a few spell scripts being worked on in pws or only partially work.
This world does have lot of custom spells for all spell casting classes. That part of the world is very fun to explore.

The server is a higher magic server. You have a lot of spells, a lot of magic items and a lot of levels. I believe it’s a 30 level server. You have to apply on their boards for just about everything including going higher than 20th level. It’s very strange but I did have my own system when I ran Harvest Moon. Once you reached 20th level and rped enough you would be given an epic quest and if you survived could go to 30th level. So another way to make sure that epic characters are truly epic.

But for all the server’s glitz, glitter, and popularity there are some glaring problems with the world.

The most obvious is Jasperre’s ai. I knew within 15 minutes of going on the server for the first time they were using Jasperre’s. Anytime there was combat on the server TMI errors showed up. Every time I went to a combat area there was sever lag. There is so much lag on this server that players each get a resurrection stone to raise dead players that have been hit by lag. It was really hard for me to play in combat areas and I have a gaming computer made for things like this.

Don’t get me wrong Jasperre did make a fantastic ai but his loops constantly break because he never figured (I’m guessing) that NWN as a whole is built upon a giant loop. Putting so many nests within an ai is bound to break when multiple creatures spawn for combat.

When I made Harvest Moon, I also incorporated a partially fixed Jasperres (by RDJparadis) into it. I started to get stack overflows (TMI errors myself) Mermut my lead scripter completed RDJ’s work within a few months and after that the ai no longer had problems.

I offered these scripts to Cormyr but it was not taken well so I dropped it.

Now I was only on this server for a week or week and a half but really tested everything I could. Including administrative and Dm things as much as I could and here I found what seems to be the server’s biggest problems. Servers as they get older naturally get very clickish. Here I found all the warning signs. I can’t, nor will I say for sure this is the case but every test I put the dms or admins through was failed miserably in this regard. I’ll take you step by step of each thing I looked at and you decide for yourself.

So, because Cormyr and the Dalelands is a heavy rp server I looked at the forums first for basic rules and stuff. Most of it was pretty standard for this kind of server except for one thing. It said on the forums that you must request any Dm event on the boards. That immediately set alarm bells off in my head. However, I wanted to give them the benefit of the doubt because it is a large and popular server, and this may be just due to traffic. I found out that this seems not to be the case often old servers just want to entreat their core players. The rest are wallpaper. I can’t say this is the case here, but warning bells were going off in my mind as I read it.

I then went to the part of the form that listed sign ups for quests. I found that the same players were signed up for events all the time. This was a glaring warning for me also. Meaning that core players are attended to and the rest of the population is ignored. Once again, I wanted to give them the benefit of the doubt made Lauriella up and went into the game.

So, I played the game for a few days even met a friend from the Narfell server. The players were wonderful. I did not meet a bad rper. The game felt really fun and I had a lot of fun testing out all these new spells. I found the monetary system a bit weird but once I got a handle on it all was good. So, after playing a few days I noticed in my inventory a pinning widget. I asked about it and it was confirmed.
I didn’t want to pin my character just yet because I had forgotten to pick up my language widgets from the entrance area where the server has a language teacher. I missed it.

The next day the server had rebooted so I had the opportunity to get my widgets. I stopped in front and was about to do that when I came up with a good idea to test the admin/dm structure and how they treat players (customers). So, I went into the world without my languages pinned my character to the local inn went out and back into the game. A simple test.

I called for a Dm. they came and asked what I needed. I said, “I accidently pinned my character to the inn without getting my language widgets from the teacher at the start area. Could you port me back there so I could get them?”

His answer was very surprising. He said, “Why are you bothering me with this crap. You have to ask on the boards for things like that.” Then the Dm left.

That surprised me. I’ve never had a Dm when asked for a simple admin fix say or react like that in 20 years of playing on servers. I noted it down and moved on with my investigations.

The next incident was with my writings on the boards about Lauriella. I wrote an entry that mentioned a creature not in forgotten realms. Within 15 minutes I got a private message on the boards. It was not from a Dm, or Admin it was from one of the core players. He helped me a lot by letting me know that the creature didn’t exist in forgotten realms lore but he also mentioned to me that Dms don’t like these things here and will hurt your character in a lot of ways if you don’t play by their exact rules.

That gave me pause for thought. I told him, I was glad the players watch out for each other and thanked him. His response was here the players need to watch out for one another. It was another warning sign to me that the server is highly regulated toward only the core players and not to newcomers.

The last major incident that caught my attention was while sitting in the commons area. There was a half-orc fighter I was sitting beside talking too. He mentioned he was 14th level. At this time Lauriella was a 13th level mage. So, I clicked on his character description. Again, this was another core player. Above his description was his rating vs my character. It said overpowering. A 14 fighter should not in any way shape or form be overpowering to a 13th wizard when the wizard has the best equipment for her level available on the server. The fighter should be challenging. To me it confirmed my suspicions about the server itself. By this time, I knew it was time for me to leave.

In retrospect the server does have good things on it. It does have flair, unique spells, pc scaling and a lot of glitzy things to snag you up. But for all of that if your not treated as a client. If you have to do all the Dm work yourself, if you have to beg to get Dmed it’s hard to recommend for any but the most stanch of rpers. People play NWN to get a little relaxation from the reality of their daily lives. This server to me felt like just the opposite. It has an oppressive feeling to it because of the attitudes of the Admins and Dms. The players make up for it a great deal but I would think about it over in your head if you want to try this server.

If you’re the highly creative type or someone that plays NWN for fun and relaxation I would pass up this server for a server like Narfell. Narfell doesn’t have a lot of glitter and unique things but the dms and admins will at least treat you like a customer. They will dm you and their storylines are fantastic.

The next server I’ll be reviewing is The City of Arabel. This server is the complete opposite of Cormyr and the Dalelands. The Dms are helpful and fair. The storylines are very unique and I’m having a hell of a lot of fun on it.
CTP team member
Chief cook and bottle washer for Harvest Moon

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