It’s been a couple of months since game developer BioWare Corp. updated its Web site with information about its ongoing Macintosh development of the game Neverwinter Nights. The drought lifted with
a recent posting to help let anxious Mac gamers know that things are still moving along.
A fantasy-based role playing game set in an immersive 3D world, Neverwinter Nights is the latest creation from the same company that originally developed the Baldur’s Gate series for PC. Unlike many games where the computer controls the action, Neverwinter Nights allows one player to act as Dungeon Master, just like in a “real” dice, pen and paper-based Dungeons & Dragons game.
BioWare Corp. has planned from the start to offer Neverwinter Nights for Mac, PC and Linux. Those plans have long been plagued by problems and setbacks however, so BioWare’s latest missive on the Macintosh version is sure to help give Mac gamers some level of reassurance.
Initially BioWare had hoped to ship Neverwinter Nights simultaneously for all three platforms, but those plans went awry late in development. Publishing rights to the game changed from Interplay to Infogrames, which shipped a PC-only version of the game last year.
Infogrames subsidiary MacSoft then announced plans to publish the game for the Macintosh, and had at one point hoped to bring Neverwinter Nights’ powerful Aurora Toolset to the Macintosh as well. The Aurora Toolset, used to create new scenarios for Neverwinter Nights, proved to be prohibitively expensive and complicated to convert, and MacSoft let it be known just before the game’s Mac debut at Macworld Expo in San Francisco this past January that the Aurora toolset would not be published for the Mac after all, disappointing a few Mac gamers who had hoped to create their own scenarios.
The latest wrinkle in this ongoing saga in Destineer’s acquisition this January of MacSoft. Destineer, the game publisher and developer run by MacSoft’s original founder Peter Tamte, has since launched
a new Web site for MacSoft and has restated its intent to publish Neverwinter Nights and other forthcoming titles for the Mac.
Acknowledging the frustration of impatient Mac gamers who have been concerned about the lack of reports, BioWare said, “There are a few cool things that are in the pipe for the Mac version of Neverwinter Nights. One of them is a Neverwinter Nights Mac Tech Trial that will be released before the game goes gold. Part of this Tech Trial will be to garner feedback on the performance and compatibility of the Mac version, to ensure that we provide you, the Mac gamer, with the best experience we can manage.”