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About Pekka

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    Arctic Circle, Finland

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  1. Having recently played the Island of Balduran quests in BGEE for the first time, I was again reminded what an interesting character Delainy is. A pity we can't have her in our party... yet. I wish you good luck with completing this mod.
  2. I haven't been actively posting in years, but I do still keep an eye on promising BG mod projects. The series itself is still far from dead (for example the recent release of the BG1 Enhanced Edition) and because big developers like EAware no longer make any proper CRPGs, there's always room for new content. Obviously this mod has been under development for a very, very long time, but that's one reason why it would be such a shame to see all the work go to waste, so don't give up.
  3. I don't post much nowadays, but I've still been following some of the promising BG mods, including Delainy. I have BG2 installed, ready and waiting for Del to get released. So keep up the good work and know that there are still people around who like the BG series and appreciate everything you modders have done (and continue to do) to make these classics even better.
  4. Pekka

    ToB news

    Sounds quite realistic to me, considering the situation in ToB. Just don't overdo it, I don't see Amber as the prophet of Schopenhauerian pessimism. Long is good.
  5. Good stuff. Thank you for keeping this module alive, Bri. Today, with major companies like BioWare concentrating in making shoot 'em ups and beat 'em ups instead of traditional CRPGs a la BG2, the need for high quality user generated content is greater than ever. (I did like Jade Empire, and Mass Effect is a brilliant shooter with RPG elements, but they're not the good old CRPGs I love.) Fortunately we have many talented modders and some quite promising indie game developers around to provide us with that content. So keep up the good work. I'm looking forward to playing this mod.
  6. When I got IWD2 years ago, I played it through twice with different parties, but that was it. The lack of interesting NPCs and proper interaction between party members killed my interest in the game. It's great to be able to create a complete party and play with it, but in my opinion CRPGs should also have a host of pre-created NPCs available, ready to join the player's party, complete with their own stories, agendas and quests. Obsidian did a bad job with the forced party members of NWN2, but at least such characters aren't as dead and silent as a party completely created by the player. So if you're willing to mod IWD2 and improve it, I'm ready to download and play everything you've got to offer. I'm very much looking forward to your IWD2 NPCs. (And I'm too lazy to download and test the Alpha version, since I already have my hands full with NWN2 modding...)
  7. Pekka

    Pan's Labyrinth

    Pan’s Labyrinth (What a stupid translation for El Laberinto del Fauno, I can’t understand why they use that English title also in Finland) is undoubtedly an interesting movie. I wouldn’t say it’s the best fantasy film ever made, but it’s definitely worth watching. It’s very similar to Víctor Erice’s (if you know anything about Spanish films, you’ve heard about him) El espíritu de la colmena (’The Spirit of the Beehive’) from the early 1970’s - in fact the similarities are so obvious that I was surprised how few critics mention them in their articles. Erice’s film was released while El Caudillo Franco was still in power, so the social criticism is skilfully veiled, but it’s there. I think Erice did a more realistic job than Guillermo del Toro at portraying the mysterious world of a ’special’ young child, but that’s just my opinion. In any case, I heartily recommend the film.
  8. It seems to me that many people gave up on NWN1 when they played the miserable official campaign that came with the game and never gave it another chance. The expansions were quite good, Hordes of the Underdark in particular, and did much to improve the product. But what really made me like NWN was the countless modules, some of which are truly amazing and clearly the products of talented people with a lot of love towards serious roleplaying. NWN2's official campaign is much better than its predecessor's, but I think we're once again going to see the best adventures come from the module developers. Already there are several quite promising mods and mod series in development. Having been involved in a NWN2 modding project for two years now, my advice for everyone who's planning to try his or her hands at NWN2 modding is this: gather together a team of intelligent, patient and determined people who *really* want to invest their time into module development. The workload can be quite staggering depending on how ambitious your plans are - I don't think it's even possible to create a long series of mods with dozens of hours of play time all by yourself. BG modding community is so full of gifted individuals that I'd love to see some of them try their luck at NWN modding. I'm sure the results would be well worth the effort for all players and friends of real CRPGs.
  9. True. Maybe we need more developers devoted to these hardcore players (though I’ve always thought that people can’t really be so stupid that they only appreciate the eye-candy factor of a CRPG), but then alternative methods of distribution are needed, because it’s not economically feasible to release such products world-wide in every single store that sells computer and console games. In addition to CRPGs, I’m a fan of hardcore strategy games. Practically every developer in that genre has now moved on to selling their products from digital stores as digital downloads, with packages available on request (and extra cost), if at all. This development has saved such games from extinction. Markets are limited, but so are the development costs, and grognards are faithful (if somewhat demanding) customers. Obsidian Entertainment has a surprisingly negative attitude toward CRPG romances. I really don’t understand it. Of course romances should never be forced on players who don’t want them, but they should definitely be included and properly done for those of us who enjoy such interaction in CRPGs. The more choice players have, the better. Anyways, NWN2 has a steadily growing modding community. Quality products are on the way, with interesting stories, complex character interaction and also romances. I’ve been involved in such a project for two years now, and the first part of our mod series should be ready for release in the near future.
  10. Hehe, it seems nothing has changed over the last 30 years! As a teenager, I spent several summers in Britain with my father who was working as an engineer for Rauma-Repola Oy, a major Finnish pulp and metal industry company back then in the 70s and 80s. It was quite amusing to see how unbelievably little most people knew about Finland. If someone knew something, it was mostly about Lapland, reindeers and all that stuff. However, I did meet some Brits who knew even the name of our long-time president, Urho Kekkonen. Finland was in the news for some time in the middle of that decade, thanks to the big Conference on European Security and Cooperation held in Helsinki in 1975. And of course the business associates of my father were well-educated people, some having quite high-level jobs in their companies (one of them was actually a very civilised nobleman, and not at all haughty and arrogant as such people are often thought to be). But generally speaking, most of the so-called common folk knew next to nothing about my homeland. But that’s understandable. After all, Britain is a former superpower, and just like France, it tends to pay more attention to the major players on the international stage (and Finland is definitely not one of those). Such historical trends are naturally reflected also in the school systems of present and former great powers. I’ve never been an exchange student, so unfortunately I can’t add much to that discussion.
  11. I think the new Battlestar Galactica is now the best American sci-fi show. So far the series has been the most brilliant depiction I've ever seen of the dangerous tension between civilian and military authorities in a time of great crisis. This theme of civilians meddling in the operational plans of the military (which they shouldn't be doing) and the military meddling in the political workings of a civil society (which they shouldn't be doing) has been topical since the early days of civilised human governments and their systems of military. In my opinion, Firefly doesn't have much to offer compared to BSG. Unfortunately the story of Serenity and her crew isn't the finest hour of Whedon's career...
  12. Pekka

    Amber Feedback (Spoilers!)

    Not a bad idea at all. It's often very difficult to spot such actions in IE games. But anyway, last night I was replaying the last two chapters in order to test certain things, when something caught my attention, viz. the chapter talk n:o 6 that contains some interesting material on the racial memory and mutual hatred between the elves and the drow. My PC is an elf in this playthrough, so I took a quick look at the code to see whether there are any special dialogue choices available for all pointy-eared protagonists, but I couldn't find any. I think it would be neat to expand this conversation a little with such options. Having grown up in Candlekeep, the elf protagonist probably wouldn't have all the same prejudices as his or her 'normal' cousins when talking about the drow, but I still think this would be a golden opportunity to take up such issues with Amber. After all, having multiple choices like this in conversations is just the thing that improves the immersion and replay value of every CRPG. (At least this is how I try to defend my point of view to our NWN2 mod team, when its writers and coders are angered by my constant demands for more content.) Just a thought...
  13. Pekka

    Amber Feedback (Spoilers!)

    Interesting. I hadn't noticed that that little machine was operable, nor that Lorraine used it. But I did notice a typo in the machine's description: ~The main part of the strange-looking machine seems be a large tank filled with some kind of dark green substance.~ (seems *to* be)
  14. Pekka

    Amber Feedback (Spoilers!)

    What about the other gems? (I know what the green one does.) I sold them to get some money, because I couldn't find any other use for them.
  15. Definitely worth seeing, as was the first movie. The PotC series is in my opinion Jerry Bruckheimer's best production so far. Unlike his other films, like King Arthur and especially Pearl Harbor, which was such an awful history-raping piece of **** that I wanted to strangle somebody when I left the theatre...
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