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BioWare Holds World Design Contest

CowboyNeal posted more than 7 years ago | from the make-a-better-toril dept.

PC Games (Games) 93

grayblob writes "BioWare is holding a World Design Contest to find talented level designers to work in Austin on their first MMORPG. To enter you must create a module with a 20-40 minute playtime in the NWN1 toolset. The module should include 'a cut scene, intricate puzzles and interesting NPC behavior.' The contest ends July 20 and like the writing contest doesn't guarantee employment for the winners."

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Lesson should have been learned (1)

EvilGoodGuy (811015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174595)

One thing that they should have picked up from Guild Wars, and from NWN2. Cut scenes in multiplayer suck. 5 want to skip, and the other guy is afk. If I submit one, I'm just going to have a video of quad Knights of the Round. Because hey, it worked for FFVII.

Re:Lesson should have been learned (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174675)

How about having the individual option to skip the cut scene. While the others are watching them, the skipped players could be doing something else tangentially tied to the game (reviewing strategy, modifying inventories, etc., etc.) Heck, evan spawn a completely stupid game like a Tetris-clone to pass the time while the others are watching... The possibilities are pretty cool. ~g

Re:Lesson should have been learned (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | more than 7 years ago | (#19179185)

Or 3-dragon ante.

No, wait. Here's an idea:

You could have a minigame that has collectible cards ingame that you can find or buy with real life money.

Re:Lesson should have been learned (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174787)

So because you're an impatient ass ("SKIP CUTSCENE PLZ" "ZOMG WHO DIDNT SKIP WHAT A FAG") they should come up with another, worse, method of getting the story across?

Or so you have a brilliant idea for a better way to do it?

Goat Sea (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174817)

Goat C [goatse.ch]

Re:Goat Sea (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19175303)

offtopic? looks like a moderator has never used the NWN toolset!

Re:Lesson should have been learned (5, Insightful)

VagaStorm (691999) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175441)

What if they don't really want a cut sceene, but want builders to demonstrate their ability to create scripted events in the NWN toolset?

Re:Lesson should have been learned (2, Insightful)

someone1234 (830754) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176415)

Puzzles also suck in multiplayer, unless they are specifically designed for MP. So, i guess this contest isn't targeted at MP.

Re:Lesson should have been learned (1)

mcvos (645701) | more than 6 years ago | (#19233253)

So, i guess this contest isn't targeted at MP.

You're right. This contest is targeted at selecting skills they need for developing a MMORPG. The submissions themselves are not necessarily intended to be played by more than one player, they're intended to show off design skills. And scripting, and stuff like that. Apparently BioWare has decided it's important that candidates know how to include a good cutscene, for whatever reason.

Re:Lesson should have been learned (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19180525)

a video of quad Knights of the Round. Because hey, it worked for FFVII.

Don't forget to W-Summon it twice ;)

so let me get this straight (3, Interesting)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174611)

they want to create this artifical environment of competition to make people think it's a priviledge to work for them or something? people, it's a highly competitive employment market - and i mean for employers, not you. they need to be begging you for the chance to explain why you should want to work for them, not the other way around.

Re:so let me get this straight (4, Insightful)

TheLazySci-FiAuthor (1089561) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174645)

they need to be begging you for the chance to explain why you should want to work for them...


I've always had a bit of a problem with this line of reasoning. It rings too much like: "When opportunity comes knocking, just wait until it's begging on it's knees before you answer the door."

Re:so let me get this straight (4, Interesting)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174749)

i've always had a problem with contests like this for many reasons.

firstly i promise it'll have a clause in it stating they will own your idea's and submissions.

In addition, employers like this like the breed this idea that you will need to accept any terms and any pay they offer because clearly they are doing you a favour.

employment is not a favour, it's an arrangement. your labour and idea's are VERY valuable. without people these companys make nothing, always remmeber that.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

TheLazySci-FiAuthor (1089561) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175123)

Without a (good) company do the people make something?

I do agree with your stance on employment being an equal agreement, but I do not approach the process without a fair mind.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

donaldm (919619) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175199)

While contests like this are excellent for the newcomer to possibly break into gaming design and programing I would recommend that each contestant look carefully at the conditions of entry since there is a possibility of this being abused to varying degrees. This does not just apply to the competition but design and innovation in general, since it is far to easy for a big company to steal your ideas even if it is unintentional.

Today it is just about impossible for any person with even a small amount of imagination to look at something and have varying ideas on how that something works and even to possibly improve on it. This is commonly called inspiration and innovation, however the degree of this does depend on the person education, skills and life experience. Unfortunately once a company gets hold of any inspiration they do have a tendency to wrap it up in Intellectual Property which actually suppresses outside innovation.

Re:so let me get this straight (2, Insightful)

Babbster (107076) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175385)

firstly i promise it'll have a clause in it stating they will own your idea's and submissions.

Such a clause would be absolutely critical. If they don't include something like that, then down the line if one of their designers has a similar idea - even if it's truly, independently generated - to one of the submissions then they could be sued.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

jlarocco (851450) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175971)

As far as I'm concerned, if one of their designers coincidentally comes up with an idea very similar to one submitted for the contest, they deserve to be sued. I understand why the clause is there, I just don't think it's very fair.

Re:so let me get this straight (2, Insightful)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176217)

As far as I'm concerned, if one of their designers coincidentally comes up with an idea very similar to one submitted for the contest, they deserve to be sued.
Because clearly one person should own an idea for a particular amount of time, even if others come up with the idea independently. That sounds fair to me [/sarcasm]

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

jlarocco (851450) | more than 7 years ago | (#19179115)

Because clearly one person should own an idea for a particular amount of time, even if others come up with the idea independently. That sounds fair to me [/sarcasm]

If I unknowingly came up with a game very similar to one of theirs, with similar graphics, sound and gameplay, they wouldn't hesitate to sue the shit out of me. I'm not saying it's right or wrong, only that it's more fair when it works both ways.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

aussie_a (778472) | more than 7 years ago | (#19186521)

Two wrongs don't make a right.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

Babbster (107076) | more than 7 years ago | (#19200623)

I think you're making an unfounded assumption. Bioware isn't actively hunting people to sue in order to get nice settlements. They're not SCO, and their business plan is not based on lawsuits. So, unless a game is clearly an attempt to "steal" their ideas ("But, but, I called my game OPAL Empire!") they're very unlikely to sue. A litigious individual, however, someone looking to get a lottery-type payday, might look much harder to find "similarities" to their proposal over which to file a lawsuit.

Re:so let me get this straight (3, Insightful)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176543)

It goes even further than that, though.

Design a World Contest: You design a world and it's yours to keep! Unfortunately, that means that we won't have anything to do with it afterwards and it won't get published.

Oh yeah, that makes sense. People could design a world any time they want to, especially with the NWN toolset. The could certainly create a cutscene, a puzzle, and interesting NPC behavior without this contest. The key here is that BioWare is looking for future employees via this contest. The real winners are the ones that get hired, not the ones that 'win' the contest. And BioWare will probably want the new employee to expand upon the idea they already had, rather than start from scratch on a new one immediately. That means owning the results of the contest.

People also forget something about art: Giving a little of your work away is a GREAT advertisement. Baen.com has pretty much proven this with their free library. The first book they -gave away- is now their all-time best seller. Yes, seller.

companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19175721)

company -> companies

Re:so let me get this straight (2, Interesting)

dave1791 (315728) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176063)

Ideas are worthless without an implementation. There are more ideas than people in the game industry. People go into that line of work becasue they have an idea; sometimes more than one. This article is an interesting read for anyone under the illusion that ideas alone are worth anything.
http://www.sloperama.com/advice/idea.htm [sloperama.com]

As for accepting whatever pay terms and work hours. The fact is that making video games is one of the "passion" things. Jobs that people love can pay less than being say an actuary, database programmer or professor.

I might re-install NWN1 and take a look at it just for fun.

Re:so let me get this straight (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19176735)

While I do technically agree with what you say, this can in fact be a favor to someone. For example, someone who has aspired to work for such a company but does not have the college papers to back up their abilities. This gives people like that an immediate chance to prove their worth and say "I can do it, definitely!"

While this particular series of positions really doesn't need much college experience (hey they still favor people who have it) it does offer opportunity.

Hell, then there's the people who want the job and just like to participate in measurements of skill (it's not like you can't just apply for the position, this just gives them a list of willing participants and gets to see their skill first hand)

so let me get this straight-valuless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19177439)

"employment is not a favour, it's an arrangement. your labour and idea's are VERY valuable. "

Until those ideas get hosted on piratebay.

"In addition, employers like this like the breed this idea that you will need to accept any terms and any pay they offer because clearly they are doing you a favour."

Then start your own game company.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

SQLGuru (980662) | more than 7 years ago | (#19179109)

Doesn't matter.....Texas is an "at-will" state. The arrangement can be terminated by either side at any time. If you don't like the way the arrangement is set up, you can always leave.

Layne

Re:so let me get this straight (1, Insightful)

servognome (738846) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175205)

they want to create this artifical environment of competition to make people think it's a priviledge to work for them or something?
You mean create an environment where consideration for a job is based on your actual skills rather than the luck of knowing the right people.

Re:so let me get this straight (3, Insightful)

Bottlemaster (449635) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175373)

people, it's a highly competitive employment market - and i mean for employers, not you.
Actually, everything I've heard about the video game industry says otherwise. From what I hear, employees have the privilege of working 80-hour weeks because they can be easily replaced. It's not hard to find people who want to make video games.

Re:so let me get this straight (4, Insightful)

Grr (15821) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175705)

It's not hard to find people who want to make video games.

But it's very hard to find people that can. That's the reason for this contest. For graphics artists and programmers there are art and computer science schools to ensure a minimal level of competence (enough for a junior positon). For level designers there is often talent that floats to the top of the mod community. For gamedesigners the problem is most apparent, because everyone involved in gaming has the basic requirement: a strong opinion of what is fun.

Making games is fun, no doubt about it. It's the ultimate employment benefit and I think many gamedevelopers make their overtime out of passion and pride. That bioware can also introduce this extra hoop to jump through is not because it's a buyers market. Having a portfolio is often one of the few requirements to get hired. That bioware has to create a contest to get people to send them their portfolios actually suggests that they're having somewhat of a hard time filling the positions.

Now if you will excuse me, I'm only at 40 hours so far and it's already friday ;)

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

TheThiefMaster (992038) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176121)

From what I hear, employees have the privilege of working 80-hour weeks because they can be easily replaced.
Actually, employees have the "privilege" of working 80-hour weeks because they like their job so much that the employers can get away with it. Where I work some people voluntarily work later than the end of their shift, unpaid. Shocking, isn't it?

Though by the time you're in a senior position your salary pretty much includes overtime pay.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

MrManny (1026106) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176513)

Don't confuse EA with the game industry.

(SCNR)

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

TheThiefMaster (992038) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176719)

I don't work at EA.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

VagaStorm (691999) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175513)

It should be noted tho that NWN has a large base of builders already making mods for the game. I am sure some of em welcome the opportunity to show them self off a little.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

someone1234 (830754) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176427)

I don't see too many really good CRPG developers.
This is my list:
1. BioWare
2. ???

BlackIsle died (or rather transformed into Obsidian).
Obsidian isn't a developer, just a licensee, and isn't good anymore.
Troika died.

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

Holmwood (899130) | more than 7 years ago | (#19186743)

Bethesdasoft (Elder Scrolls series).

Blizzard (Diablo series).

I'd say both of these companies, off the top of my head, are quite good. Or do you and I mean something different by the term CRPG -- are you for instance limiting it to the D20 ruleset?

You're certainly right about Troika, and it's worth noting that Bethsoft also semi-died before being absorbed and resurrected.

Holmwood

Re:so let me get this straight (1)

someone1234 (830754) | more than 7 years ago | (#19196171)

Not solely D20, but CRPG definitely should contain the following: 1. dialogue 2. team based combat Otherwise they are just an (FPS) First Person Slasher game. From these FPS/RPG hybrids I would recommend Gothic 3. It has dialogue (though the hungarian translation sucks bigtime) and you can have one companion. WOW. Role playing at its top.

Contests alway produce winners! (4, Interesting)

TheLazySci-FiAuthor (1089561) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174623)

I absolutely love this kind of thing. Contests seem to inspire innovation. My favorite contest in recent years was the x-prize - that result was great!

After all, competition made life: Just so long as it does not become conflict, it is healthy.

Re:Contests alway produce winners! (1)

Fear the Clam (230933) | more than 7 years ago | (#19178853)

My favorite contest in recent years was the x-prize - that result was great!


You do know that the X Prize had nothing to do to with the Xbox, right?

Re:Contests alway produce winners! (1)

Un pobre guey (593801) | more than 7 years ago | (#19186803)

After all, competition made life: Just so long as it does not become conflict, it is healthy.

I suggest you look a little closer. In Darwinian evolution, those who lose the competition must not reproduce. This usually meant dying an unpleasant death as a virgin.

timezone (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174625)

July 20, 2007 by 11:59 PM Central Standard Time (the time zone of Austin Texas)
Uhh... Austin's time zone in July is CDT, not CST. Will you hire me? I can fix all your time zone errors full-time.

Re:timezone (1)

stinkbomb (238228) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176973)

Actually, it's only CDT when daylight savings is 'in effect', and CST otherwise, but most people that live here call it CST.

Re:timezone (1)

Noah Adler (627206) | more than 7 years ago | (#19184915)

Daylight savings is usually 'in effect' in July.

Good way to get new ideas (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174671)

Good way to get new ideas. Wasn't there a band that held a similar contest to find a new guitarist and just copied all the good riffs they heard on the day?

Who retains copyright over submitted works? No mention of it in the agreement.

I like this bit:
VGH Austin is under absolutely no obligation whatsoever to:

(a) acknowledge receipt of the Materials and/or this Agreement;


So you have to sign an agreement which they can deny ever receiving. Nice.

Re:Good way to get new ideas (2, Informative)

spootle (1033314) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175179)

The band was Limp Bizkit

Re:Good way to get new ideas (1)

harry666t (1062422) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176879)

Hmm and what if I'd release my mod under GPL first? Once it's public, it stays public forever.

Re:Good way to get new ideas (1)

2short (466733) | more than 7 years ago | (#19178985)


Of course, all the game companies I've had dealings with have had guards posted to keep from being smothered by hordes of people who can't wait to tell them their great idea.

Meanwhile, they were desperate to find the tiny fraction of those people who can actually bring ideas to fruition.

The ideas behind the modules that will be submitted to this contest aren't worth squat. The fully functional, polished modules might have some minor value if they wanted to put out some assorted best-of compilation, but that's a stretch. Hard evidence that a potential job applicant can turn out a functional, polished module is really valuable.

A common tactic these days, it seems (3, Interesting)

muntumbomoklik (806936) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174685)

The benefit of going this route instead of the dreary old slog-through-the-demos route is that you might find a one-in-a-million inexperienced young hack out there who can knock together some impressive stuff, is surprised that he has any skills marketable to a game company, and then pay him a crap salary for the "opportunity" to work for them.

So the company gets a cheap, eager, bright eyed new recruit for a few years while the product goes through its life cycle and the guy either moves on once he figures he's got enough experience to get a decent gig somewhere else, or the whole project flounders and the entire development team gets laid off anyway. I'm not sure if this is a profitable business model or not, but I do know that it will probably suck to be on the lower end of things.

Re:A common tactic these days, it seems (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174995)

As one of the so called 'inexperied young hacks' that was hired about 4 years ago by BioWare, I'd like to offer a few observations on the topic.

- The community member to hire ratio is more like 10-12 out 2.000.000 active members or so, which is slightly better than 1 out of 1.000.000.

- None of out projects has yet gone 'flounders' and no development team has ever been laid off at BioWare. In fact, there have never been lay offs as a result of a project ending or due to 'operational circumstances' at BioWare.

- The 'young, inexperienced hacks' you're talking about have mostly worked in other high tech industries before coming to BioWare to do more interesting, rewarding work. Most taken a paycut for moving into this industry - in return for higher job satisfaction and a great work environment.

- That said, I'm paid a competitive salary and I wouldn't trade my job for a job paying twice as high in vanilla IT anytime soon.

The benefits of going this route for us are:

- We get applications from people that have a background with Bioware games and understand what our games are about.

- We get people from outside the industry to think about applying. Especially making an MMO, it is important to have people who have an outside view on things instead of having been shaped by the 'establishment'.

- We get people really interested in the job, not burned out people looking for another quick assignment.

As mentioned in the article, we ran a contest for a writer position a while back and hired a great writer as a result - from outside the industry.

Re:A common tactic these days, it seems (1)

Jartan (219704) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175231)

Most taken a paycut for moving into this industry - in return for higher job satisfaction and a great work environment.


It's the taking a paycut thing they are interested in. Bioware might be a bit different but my experience with people who work for game companies is that at first they thought they'd get better job satisfaction from working on video games but that they eventually realize management is even worse than usual and you don't get to work on games you like or some other such thing happens.

So you get to work crap hours for worse pay for no benefit in the end.

Another young hack (4, Insightful)

PIPBoy3000 (619296) | more than 7 years ago | (#19177969)

A year or two ago I participated in Bioware's writing contest, winning the community voting. I actually did it for the swag they were giving away - I use their coffee mug every day and that Bioware wool cap kept me warm all winter. They'd already offered me a job some time ago, mostly after my NWN modules [adamandjamie.com] came out. It was extremely flattering, though the move, disruption to my family, and pay cut made the decision pretty easy. I have a great job in healthcare and a somehow find the time to continue to work on my module building [adamandjamie.com] even still. Working for a gaming company can be difficult, though Bioware is one of the best in the industry. I think my decision was to stick with a quality, stable job and having game making be a hobby. For the most part, it's lower stress and I can take the story whatever direction I want.

In terms of the winning module from last year, I actually did two versions. The first was way too linear. The second had lots of choice, from evil to crazy to several flavors of good. There was drama and humor, quality scripting, and polished writing. For folks trying for this contest, I'd keep the cutscenes short, give the player as many choices as you can manage, and make your NPCs memorable. Less is more for these sorts of things. Don't plan an epic module spanning dozens of areas. Just make a couple, with a simple storyline. Play to your strengths - writers should write and scripters should script. You'll have to do both, but emphasize what you're best at.

Re:Another young hack (1)

Dan Slotman (974474) | more than 7 years ago | (#19182961)

Love your username. I assume you are looking forward to the new Fallout in the same cautious optimism that I am.

Re:Another young hack (1)

Rev Jim (AKA Metal F (1004571) | more than 7 years ago | (#19185851)

Interesting stuff. I have a question though, and it sounds like you're just the person to ask. Not sure if you'll see this inquiry, but if you do and have a few minutes of free time to spare...how hard would it be for a person with say a engineering/tech/graphic background and little to no hjeavy experience programming, but a heap of experience using 3D CAD software to design structures, mechanical equipment and architectural structures with a creative disposition and heaps of gaming experience, how long would it take me in hours roughly to get up to speed with the NWN world-builf toolkit to even start to make a module worth entering in this competition? Roughly, just a ballpark guesstimate based on your expertise with it to give me an idea if it's something worth attempting. Thanks a lot in advance.

Re:Another young hack (1)

PIPBoy3000 (619296) | more than 7 years ago | (#19210839)

Learning the NWN toolset, if you have no programming experience, can be daunting. It sounds like your background is ideally suited to 3D modeling, if that's of interest to you. That being said, if you're interested there are many tutorials [bioware.com] to choose from.

Best of luck.

Re:Another young hack (1)

mcvos (645701) | more than 6 years ago | (#19233373)

For folks trying for this contest, I'd keep the cutscenes short, give the player as many choices as you can manage, and make your NPCs memorable. Less is more for these sorts of things. Don't plan an epic module spanning dozens of areas.

Sounds like excellent advise. Although I've got no idea what I'm talking about, I'd like to add making not just your NPCs, but also your locations memorable. It's a world design contest, after all. Large swaths of land don't do a thing. Exactly the right cure little grove, impressive cliff, cottage in the forest, etc, does.

Although I'd love to develop games, I won't be joining the contest. I think my skills would be more apropriate as a Java programmer [bioware.com] , and I have no experience whatsoever with modding. Also, I'm not really in a position to move to the other side of the pond, what with my SO already having a well-paying job on this side.

NWN!?? (1)

StarvingSE (875139) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174705)

Why wouldn't they use NWN2 for the contest? I know obsidian developed it, but the name and franchise is still linked to bioware. They even continue to host the forums. Why would they want to test potential candidates on a 7 year old game engine when they could be showing what they can do on the latest and greatest?

I don't think there would be any legal issues with it either, since modules are considered freeware, and as long as everyone has purchased a copy of the game.

Re:NWN!?? (3, Interesting)

LurkerXXX (667952) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174773)

Probably because it's a story/puzzle/level design contest, not a texture/physics/lighting contest. The NWN2 is extremely stable, and well known, so lots of folks are already familiar with it. If you can make an interesting level/story/puzzle in it, then it will be all the better when tied in with the latest engine of the day.

You didn't play NWN2, did you (2, Funny)

Rix (54095) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174869)

It wasn't even stable enough to run the included module, let alone community development.

Re:You didn't play NWN2, did you (1)

StarvingSE (875139) | more than 7 years ago | (#19177665)

I'd say it's fairly stable now. If you remember, the original NWN had quite a few bugs until a couple of patches came out. I guess all games need time to get over their growing pains after initial release.

When I played it... (1)

Rix (54095) | more than 7 years ago | (#19183249)

It would always crash at the same point even after reloading, forcing you to restart the campaign. That's not release quality.

Re:NWN!?? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174997)

They are using the NWN1 engine / toolset because it is well known and has a learning curve that doesn't look like a cliff. You can pick up the NWN1 toolset very quickly if you have any sort of the ability they are looking for.

The NWN2 toolset on the other hand... well the first guide I found for it is called "Don't Panic: The Hitchhiker's Guide to First Opening the Neverwinter Nights 2 Toolset"

Turing Word: smother

Re:NWN!?? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19175047)

Bunch of reasons.

Some of them

- NWN is a very mature, very stable game development platform.
- Everyone at BioWare has NWN installed on their machines. Makes it easier to review.
- It has more copies out there (3.x M+)
- It has much lower systems requirements.
- It is cheaper (15 USD vs 49 USD for NWN2)
- The people reviewing the modules are much more familiar with the NWN toolset.
- It encourages people to stick to gameplay over eyecandy.
- Faster to create a NWN module. NWN2 levels are much more complex (and better looking :) )
- The NWN toolset is more friendly (less complex) to beginners
- The documentation for NWN is much more complete after 5 years.

hope that helps

Georg, BioWare.

Re:NWN!?? (1)

someone1234 (830754) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176449)

You forgot one : developing a quality product with a less feature filled developer kit shows the real talents :)

Re:NWN!?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19179925)

The sad bit is that the one thing keeping me from trying my hand at this contest is the same thing that kept me from buying NWN in the first place: no appearance of the promised Mac toolset. The only reason I was going to buy NWN was to get the toolset, losing that broke the deal.
Yes yes, old news, still, there's someone from Bioware browsing the forum, and I thought they'd like to know that they lost Mac sales over the decision to provide an incomplete port.

Re:NWN!?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19185179)

As somebody who bought the windows version on opening day for 54.99 all because of the promised linux client 'within a week or two', I'd like to agree with the parent poster, as well as include my disappointment over the lack of further x-platform titles coming from Bioware (Especially on your own franchises!)

P.S. My captcha was 'procure', as in 'procure us a toolset' or 'procure us a x-platform game' :)

Re:NWN!?? (1)

ThePhilips (752041) | more than 7 years ago | (#19190515)

I cannot put this into polite form. In original form it sounds like "because NWN2 sucks big time".

NWN2 now at 1.05 revision and it still crashes often enough for me to stop playing it completely.

Worst part of crashes, for 1.05 game crashes after lengthy cut scenes: you can't avoid them, you can't save before them (because you do not know they are coming) and you can't skip them. In my third attempt of NWN2 I have waisted about 3 or 4 hours of game play due to two crashes. Third time I said "f*ck it", uninstalled NWN2, went to shop and bought NWN1 Platinum. It feels so-o-o-o much better. No crashes - and it literally flies on my amd4200+x2/7800gt. And depth of expansion packs - SoU and HotU - make NWN2 single player campaign look like Diabolo (== senseless non-stop shooting) in comparison.

I'll take Stephan Gagne for 800, Alex (2, Insightful)

RickRussellTX (755670) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174729)

If he can write The Hex Coda, he can win this contest. But I'll give The Rose of Eternity series due credit for its awesome use of cutscenes and music.

Re:I'll take Stephan Gagne for 800, Alex (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19178181)

He was already offered a job at BioWare and turned it down.

free gay porn! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174737)

ha! you looked! you must be a linux fag.
 
HEY EVERYONE! THE GUY LOOKING HERE IS A FAGGOT! A DIRTY DICK SMOKING FAGGOT!
 
Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter encountered. Post aborted! Lameness filter Your comment violated the "postercomment" compression filter. Try less whitespace and/or less repetition. Comment aborted.encountered. Post aborted!

Re:free gay porn! (0, Offtopic)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#19174779)

the irony here is that you must have looked to post that, so this must be your own sad way of admitting your homosexuality

Re:free gay porn! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19174839)

the irony is that you're a common sack of dog shit. go fuck yourself retard. it's probably the dumbest post i've ever seen on slashdot. not that it takes much anymore. fucking shitball.

Re:free gay porn! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19175655)

Haha you came back to see if anyone replied to your lame post. How lame. You'll probably reply to this but I'll never know.

Re:free gay porn! (0, Troll)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175305)

I don't know about you but I saw this: 1 reply beneath your current threshold.. Before I clicked, I had no idea your post was about "free gay porn" or that you were homophobic.

By the way, there's nothing wrong with gay porn.

Re:free gay porn! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19176161)

By the way, there's nothing wrong with gay porn.
Especially when it's free!

Re:free gay porn! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19176635)

Come over here, I know *just* the place where we can get some...together....

Welcome to hell.... (2, Funny)

Lorean (756656) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175117)

...you must create a module with a 20-40 minute playtime in the NWN1 toolset.
Sounds more like a cruel form of punishment than an opportunity.

Re:Welcome to hell.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19180557)

Call it a hazing ritual.

Don't forget, we created a 60 hour game and about 50 hours of expansion packs with that toolset :)

how to win (2, Funny)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175119)

Here's a simple strategy. Design a module where your character walks into Bioware's headquarters and starts shooting fireballs and summoning stuff because they didn't get a job there. Now that'll get ya hired lol.

Errr Yeah (1)

EEPROMS (889169) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175131)

So let me get this right. You will have to design an innovative playing environment for free for a company that will make millions from your idea/s without retaining any copyright or a guarantee for a job, boy talk about selling swamp land to suckers. While Im here Iran have just started a competition to design a thermo-nuclear device that can be carried in a suite case, and the prize is free do it yourself suicide kit.

Don't be stupid (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 7 years ago | (#19177919)

It's creating 40 minutes of game play, with a cut scene using an OLD toolset for an enviroment type they won't be using.

It is barely long enough to qualify as a level, muchless something they will make money with, mush less 'millions'.

Obligatory Link (1)

Sharth (621005) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175159)

http://no-spec.com/ [no-spec.com]

They need a contest? (1)

TitusC3v5 (608284) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175187)

Why not just delve into the existing selection and hire a few of the wonderfully talented [ign.com] builders that have already wowed us with their work? Or just hire Adam Miller.

Re:They need a contest? (2, Informative)

l3mr (1070918) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175965)

He refused, he wants to keep making modules a hobby.

For the whiners... (5, Insightful)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175227)

It's just a contest. You're free to decide whether it's worth it or not. You're also free to decide whether the terms are fair or not.

You want me to buy your game so I get employment? (1)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175287)

Doesn't sound much like a fair deal to me, you're supposed to be paying me for work.

Re:You want me to buy your game so I get employmen (1)

Racemaniac (1099281) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175895)

the game is nearly 5 years old, if you don't yet have it, you should be able to find it at very low price besides, they have to use something for such a contest, i doubt they'll release it freeware/make an entire game to test people with, just to find a few skilled people

Re:You want me to buy your game so I get employmen (2, Interesting)

RSKennan (835119) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176407)

Do you get paid for writing your resume, or getting an artist's portfolio together too? People said the same things about the WotC Setting search a few years back, and even though I didn't win the contest, I placed in the top 11, which was enough to get me my first book deal and to give me a career in writing. Don't be so quick to be cynical about this kind of contest. Or, you know, do, and those who are willing to work for an opportunity won't have as many people to compete against.

Re:You want me to buy your game so I get employmen (2, Insightful)

kjart (941720) | more than 7 years ago | (#19176607)

Yeah, about as reasonable as:
You want me to buy a suit for the interview to get employment? You're supposed to pay me!
You want me to buy gas to drive to the interview to get employment? You're supposed to pay me!
You want me to pay for university and get a degree to get employment? You're supposed to pay me!

Sometimes they do, but more often then not you have to do some things for yourself. Get used to it.

Employment? (1)

highwaytohell (621667) | more than 7 years ago | (#19175333)

Of course theyw ouldnt give employment to someone who may be proficient with an engine that is outdated. When this thing is sent in to Bioware is there some clause in the terms and conditions where the IP, that users have created for use in this competition, becomes the property of Bioware? Are bioware gonna get all these cool ideas and then rort the poor fools that handed them in not knowing that this was entirely agreed upon cause they didnt bother to read the conditions?

Cynical view? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19175417)

"BioWare is holding a World Design Contest to find talented level designers to work in Austin on their first MMORPG. To enter you must create a module with a 20-40 minute playtime in the NWN1 toolset. The module should include 'a cut scene, intricate puzzles and interesting NPC behavior.' The contest ends July 20 and like the writing contest doesn't guarantee employment for the winners."
Honestly, it sounds like they're really saying "Make some interesting game modules so we can steal them for our next project." If I remember correctly, you don't hold any rights over anything you submit. Of course, I'm sure Bioware wouldn't even think of stealing someone's work, but the way they right all the legalese...

[Hopefully I remembered incorrectly.]

Wow - Slashdotters Clueless As Usual. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19176261)

I'm certain Bioware's going to get rich off a few 20-40 minute module submissions from the NWN1 engine.

Christ. Considering you'd likely be getting hired to create modules using the NWN engine, it's only common sense that they want to see what kind of work you do beforehand. Houses producing FPS games generally ask for level portfolios - what, Bioware shouldn't do the same?

A module that's less than an hour long isn't likely to be appropriated and sold for profit.

Old Chinese Proverb (1)

dave562 (969951) | more than 7 years ago | (#19185521)

"The man who says it can't be done shouldn't bother the man who is doing it."

Everyone who comes in here and poo-poos on the contest should keep that in mind.

Hah (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19210051)

I love these "contests".
Comapany: "Hey obsessed fans, make us some content. Normally, people get paid to design content. You will not be."
Obsessed Fan #42: "Huh? You want me to work for free? No WAY!"
Company: "Well... what if we called it... a CONTEST?"
Obsessed Fan #42: "Contest?! OMG sign me up!"
Company: "Thanks for joining (sucker)! Submit your free work to win (a meaningless, cheap prize that doesn't come near fair compensation for your effort)!"
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