Author Topic: The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware  (Read 1102 times)


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The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware
« on: July 24, 2010, 06:27:03 pm »

The Dungeon Master (DM) controls an entire world for players to explore. DMs will find everything they need to tell the best story they can and enhance Neverwinter Nights experience for players.

One of the most revolutionary things about Neverwinter Nights is the inclusion of a special piece of software that allows a game player to become the organizer of a Neverwinter Nights module and campaign. This position is called the Dungeon Master (DM) in D&D terms. He or she controls all other aspects of the game except for the other players- the monsters, the encounters, and the other characters in the adventure.

DM Client Resources:

     -DM Client Introduction
     -NWN FAQ Section 5. Dungeon Master
     -Console Commands*
     -DM-Friendly Initiative*

*Posted as a separate thread on this forum - JFK

An Introduction to the Dungeon Master Client for NWN
Intended Audience: DMs
By Jay Watamaniuk

The role of the Dungeon Master (DM) is very special in the world of Dungeons and Dragons. The DM is in control of all aspects of the game that the players will encounter on their adventures. The DM must be capable of creating encounters, settings, characters, plot, and story all while the players explore their environment. This overview of the DM Client will give you the basics on this powerful tool that allows you to do all of the vital tasks of the Dungeon Master within a NWN multiplayer game.
This document is broken into the following sections:
1.    Basic Display
2.    Using the Chooser
3.    Selection in the Chooser
4.    Using the Radial Menus
5.    Using the Creator
6.    Specific Special Features of the DM Client


Intro to the DM Client - Part 1
Basic Display

    The display for the DM Client is very similar to the Single Player Client, with the exception of several buttons at the top of the main screen. You will see that you have a 'character' representing you as the DM; this is called the DM Avatar. The reason for this avatar is to give the DM something to focus on and does not have to be used unless you wish to cast spells, move to a specific door/chest/whatever or appear as a Non-playing Character (NPC) to the players. You will also notice your movement rate is about six times faster than Player Characters (PCs). The DM Avatar is normally invisible and intangible to all creatures and PCs in the game.
The buttons at the top are:
1. Chooser- A menu of your module's contents including areas, creatures, triggers and waypoints. Note that items are not listed here.
2. Creator- Allows the DM to create any monster, item, placeable object, trigger, generic trap or waypoint during play.
3. Show Triggers/ Hide Triggers- It will indicate an area where a trigger of some kind exists. If set to 'Hide Trigger' all indicators will not be visible to the DM. A trigger is a trap or encounter that has been placed in the module. Triggers will remain invisible to PCs, unless detected in game, regardless of this setting.
4. Appear/Disappear- The DM Avatar will become visible and tangible to PCs and anything else in the game. The DM Avatar is still invulnerable and retains all DM abilities even if visible to the players. 'Disappear' causes the DM to become invisible and intangible again. No PC or creature in the game can detect a DM through spells or special abilities when the DM is invisible and intangible.
5. Pause/Unpause- Pauses game. DM, and all DM functions, are not paused.
6. Difficulty Slider- Moving the slider to the left makes combat progressively easier (monsters are easier to kill, do less damage and so on) each increment the slider moves. Moving the slider to the right increases the difficulty each increment it is moved.
The Chooser and the Creator are the two big features of the DM Client and are discussed in detail next.

Intro to the DM Client - Part 2

Clicking on the 'Chooser' brings up a window of buttons:
1. Goto- Select a particular creature, location, encounter, NPC or PC and then click 'Goto'. The DM will be teleported to the selected thing or area.
2. Kill- Kills whatever is selected- including PCs.
3. Jump- Move target to a specified point. You select a creature press the jump button, and click on a place that is in your area. It is also used to bring creatures to you.
4. Toggle A.I.- Shuts off creature A.I. The creature will simply stand there and not respond to anything.
5. Heal- Heals whatever creature/NPC/PC selected.
6. Take Control (Possess)- DM inhabits a creature or NPC with no additional DM abilities apart from the DM buttons available at the top. That means the possessed creature is not invincible, and does not have access to all spells in the game. If the creature is killed, the DM's Avatar appears (but is still invisible and intangible to all creatures and PCs).
The ability to possess creatures allows the DM to fight the PC as an enemy creature, hold a conversation through a NPC and force a creature to act in a certain way.
7. Rest- Forces creature to rest.
8. Limbo- Sends selected target to an inescapable location away from all seeable maps.
9. Examine- Gives description of selected thing. This is exactly like a PC examining something in game.
10. Take Control Full Powers (DM Possession)- DM inhabits the body of a creature or NPC but retains full DM powers. The DM will appear as that creature but be invulnerable and have the ability to cast all spells.
11. Toggle Invulnerability- Makes creature invincible to all damage.
12. Search by First Name- If you know the first name of the thing you are looking for, you can type it in here, and it will take you to it on the list. It's very similar to the find command for Word documents
13. Find Next- Chooser moves to next similar item on list.
Below this list of buttons is a tree-style window that will display everything in the game that is selectable.
•    Area
(Note: The word 'Area' is replaced by the actual names of the different module areas.)
Under each Area, several categories appear that refer to its contents. Each of these things can be highlighted and, if appropriate, can be used with the relevant action buttons above. Note that items are not listed here.
o    Creatures- All monsters and NPCs in this particular area.
o    Encounters
o    Triggers and Traps
o    Waypoints
•    Limbo
This is treated like a special area that appears in all modules. There is nothing here except what is placed by the DM during play.

Intro to the DM Client - Part 3
Example of How to Select Something in Chooser


In this example, I have three areas in the module I have created. Each area has a different name. I made these maps within the Toolset prior to running this module with players. You will notice that a '+' sign is used to indicate that more content lies within that category. A '-' sign is used to indicate that category is fully expanded out.
I wish to find a creature called a Balor within my module. I click on Chooser-> Map1_Church-> Creatures and find him listed under the other creatures, or NPCs, in the Church. I highlight the Balor and now can click on one of my commands such as Goto, Kill, Heal etc. to perform an action on that selected Balor.
The Evil Caves (name of the entire module)
        o Creatures
                Balor (110/110)
                Jinn (9/9) Dungeon Master
                Peasant1(12/12) Invulnerable
                Peasant2 (12/12) Invulnerable
                Priest (11/11) Invulnerable
        o Encounters
        o Triggers and Traps
        o Waypoints
    •Map3_Underground Caverns

Note- The area names can be anything you wish. I could have labeled 'Map1_Church' something different based on how I want to organize things in my module such as Church, Area001, CHURCH, Timmy's Basement and so on.

 Intro to the DM Client - Part 4
Using the Radial Dial Menus

Right click on any creature or NPC in the game and a radial dial will appear that gives you the following Chooser functions starting from the very top and moving clockwise:
    1.    Limbo
    2.    Goto
    3.    Heal
    4.    Kill
    5.    Take Control (leads to another radial menu of Take Control, Toggle AI and DM Control)
    6.    Toggle Invulnerability
    7.    Force Rest
    8.    More Actions- This leads to a second radial dial menu with such standard actions as Cast Spell, Attack, Special Attack and so on. In addition to these standard actions you will also have the Give/Take option. The Give/Take option is used to give or take experience (XP), levels, and gold to creatures/NPCs/PCs.

Intro to the DM Client - Part 5

The other big feature of the DM Client is the Creator. This function basically allows the DM to insert whatever he or she wants (monsters, items, furniture etc.) directly into the game as play is happening.
A tree window will appear when you click the Creator button. The set-up is exactly the same as the Toolset tree layout. You will be given a list of things you can work with:

1. Creatures- These are broken down by category the same as the Toolset.
2. Items- Same as toolset.
3. Encounters- The player has a choice of what level of difficulty to place on the encounter that is placed: Very Easy, Normal, Moderate, Hard and Impossible. After selecting the difficulty level, the DM opens another menu of a list of pre-made encounter themes to choose from. This will spawn in the group of creatures.
4. Waypoints- These are markers used to indicate where a creator or NPC will travel to. For example, a guard will walk along a castle wall back and forth between two or more waypoints.
5. Triggers and Traps- Only generic triggers and generic traps can be set on the fly while play is happening. Custom triggers and traps must be made in the toolset and added to the Custom menu before play has begun.
6. Portals- Teleports creatures from one point to another.
7. Placeable Objects- A list of objects direct from the toolset.
Important Note: You cannot create a new area within the DM Client during play. For example, you cannot create a new room within your castle module when you are in play. All areas must be available when you begin play. The areas can be left blank when created in the Toolset and can be filled with furniture, monsters etc. as play happens if the players wish to take an unplanned detour.

Example of How to Create Something in the Creator


I wish to place a +1 Greataxe in one of the rooms of the Map3_Underground Caverns area I created in the example module above. I place myself in the room I want by navigating through the Chooser. I then click on the Creator to bring up my list of choices in the tree-style menu to eventually find Greataxe +1. I click on the item and place it in the room.   

 Intro to the DM Client - Part 6
Specific Special Features of the DM Client

1. Quickbar Use
The Quickbar is one of the most useful things a player can make use of during game play; this goes for the DM as well. With far more to keep track of than your average player the DM needs to be able to do things very quickly and easily. Most commands lend themselves to the Quickbar (Goto, Kill, Heal etc.) but another excellent use of the Quickbar is putting a Create creature into a quickbar slot. You would eliminate searching through multiple menus to do something simple like add a Bear to a forest adventure.

You can put a command in the Quickbar making the addition nearly seamless.
The art of being a great DM through the DM Client is more about planning instead of quick reflexes.  If you are DMing a module that takes place in a forest – why not make an entire Quickbar of forest monsters? You have three levels of Quickbars to use (regular, holding the Ctrl key and holding the Shift key)- so use them. One bar for DM commands like Heal, Give/Take and Kill that you use all the time, one bar for spawning module specific creatures, and one bar for spells, plots items or special effect placeable objects like lights, flames and so on, is one way to map out those Quickbar slots. Plan out your Quickbar; it is one of the most valuable time-savers you have as the DM.

2. Map Feature
The DM has several options for moving around his or her module areas. The first is simply running there using his or her DM Avatar. The second is selecting an area or particular creature in the Chooser and clicking Goto, and finally, the Map Feature. Click on the map icon in the upper right-hand corner will bring up a complete map of the current area you are in. Double-click on any point on the map and you will be teleported there.

3. Jump All Players to Point
The DM has the ability to summon all players in the module to his or her avatar at once. This can be used at the start of the game when people are waiting for all players to arrive. Once all members are present, the DM can use the Jump All Players to Point command and all players will begin in the same place. Right click on any unoccupied floor space, bringing up a radial dial menu. The bottom menu item is 'Jump All Players to Point'. Choose a point and all PCs will teleport directly there.

4. Player Portraits
Along the right-hand side of the DM's main screen he will see the selected portraits of all the players that are playing in the game. By right clicking on the specific portrait the DM is given a radial dial of commands that can be enacted upon, or concerning, that PC.

Dungeon Master Client (from the NWN FAQ)

One of the most revolutionary things about Neverwinter Nights is the inclusion of a special piece of software that allows a game player to become the organizer of a Neverwinter Nights module and campaign. This position is called the Dungeon Master (DM) in D&D terms. He or she controls all other aspects of the game except for the other players- the monsters, the encounters, and the other characters in the adventure.
5.01: Do I need a Dungeon Master in order to play Neverwinter Nights?
Not at all. The Neverwinter Nights Official Campaign will be fully functional with or without a Dungeon Master. We cannot promise anything with regards to player-created modules but we intend to build the Aurora Neverwinter Toolset in such a way that encourages modules suitable for both forms of play.

5.02: Can I DM my friends through a module that I have created?
Yes. We intend to make the module creation process as simple as possible. Feel free to locate your story in Medieval France, the city of Waterdeep within WotC's Forgotten Realms, or a nameless haunted forest. When it's ready, launch it on either a LAN or, better yet, on our dedicated matching service, and let players from around the world enter into the one dominion where you have absolute control.

5.03: How difficult is it to DM a Neverwinter Nights game?
Being a Dungeon Master, even in pen-and-paper, is definitely an art rather than a science. Here at BioWare, we definitely feel that the Dungeon Master is a very special person - someone to be catered to. With Neverwinter Nights, we want to allow our DMs to focus on that art of telling stories and drawing people into their world, rather than on trying to navigate a clumsy interface or learn a poorly documented system. For familiarity and ease of use, the Dungeon Master interface is designed as an extension of the player interface. If you know the one, you should be right at home in the other and if you have any questions, we're committed to providing documentation on how to use the DM interface to its fullest either with the documentation that ships with the game or through our Neverwinter Nights Community Site. Along with the class-based player tutorials that mark the start of our official campaign, we're also working on a thorough tutorial for potential DMs, thereby providing a safe environment in which to get a feel for the game, without the pressure of having live players actually in the module.

5.04: Is the Dungeon Master there just to dump monsters in the players' path or is there something more to it?
The Dungeon Master role is whatever you make it. If you want to run a simple dungeon hack, you're more than welcome to. However, the tools at your disposal are far more powerful and evocative than simply plopping down monsters and treasure. We give you the ability to interact with your players on a one-to-one basis, to truly be the character they are talking to. Tell a tale of love lost, have a feared orc chieftain sheathe his sword in the midst of battle when he learns that it is his half-orc daughter who opposes him, breath life into everything. We envision the Dungeon Master as a master storyteller, bringing wit and emotion to the gameworld and enriching the role-playing experience of the players. We want to challenge you, as DM, to have a deep emotional impact on your players. Possess the game's characters and fill them with drama. Build mood and atmosphere in everything you do. Your players will love you for it and spread word of your campaigns everywhere they go.

5.05: Can there be multiple Dungeon Masters in a single game?
Definitely. The Dungeon Masters will be on equal footing but we may give the initial DM the ability to modify the abilities and permissions of other DMs if he or she sees fit. A good DM team could enact complex scenes between non-player characters, manage intricate multiparty battles, or even go head-to-head in some strange new form of adversarial DM contest.

5.06: As a DM, can I alter a character's dialogue while in the game?
Even better! When 'possessing' a non-player character, you can not only control their actions but also speak through them in real-time. Drop a clue for a player in need, respond to an unanticipated question, or heighten the dramatic tension of the moment. The story is literally yours for the telling.

5.07: Can the DM make up his own magical items and rewards for dungeons/missions?
Absolutely. The DM will be able to create custom magical items within the Aurora Neverwinter Toolset. You will be free to create a large variety of items ranging from mundane swords to artifacts of great power. Provided you construct these items using the standardized effects provided in our Aurora Neverwinter Toolset, these items will be fully transferable between servers. Any item that is dependent on custom scripting for its powers, however, will only retain those powers in modules that contain the relevant scripts.

5.08: Can I log in as a Dungeon Master from a remote (ie: non-server) location?
Certainly. The Dungeon Master does not have to be the host of the game. It is possible, for instance, to establish your work computer with a nifty T1 connection as a weekend Neverwinter Nights server. The DM role is always password-protected so you can be sure that it's ready and waiting for you to jump in and manage once you get home.
 **Article composited and reposted here from original Bioware Forums by JFK


                     Modifié par Frith5, 24 juillet 2010 - 05:30 .


Legacy_Jenna WSI

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The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2010, 06:47:41 am »

               Thanks for posting this, will come in handy for our newest DM.



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The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2012, 08:29:47 pm »

               Noob question - How do you actually become DM?



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The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2012, 11:19:20 pm »

               Launch Neverwinternights, selct DM Client, and there you go! '<img'>


Legacy_NWN Mark

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The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2015, 05:31:09 am »


question: so when I'm logging into my server in DM mode. The screen pops of password. I put in the dm password. Then it crashes every time. Fix for this?




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The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2015, 12:37:33 pm »


question: so when I'm logging into my server in DM mode. The screen pops of password. I put in the dm password. Then it crashes every time. Fix for this?

We'll need more info:


Q: Is it the server or your DM Client that crashes?


Q: Can others log into the server as a DM?


Q: Can you join the server as a player?


... more to follow when those are answered ...




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The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware
« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2015, 11:36:20 pm »


Can someone tell me in detail, how to notice cheating players as a DM? What would give them up? In case their attributes are hacked, for example, 30, and 100 in every skill. Do I simply have to examine them? It is hard to do that for every present player, is there is a simpler way? 

Concerning NWN2, that is.




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The Dungeon Master Client Info and FAQ from Bioware
« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2015, 03:36:03 pm »


Sorry for belayed responses, but this is the NWN 1 Board. Please try the NWN 2 Board if you haven't yet.