Finding Character Builds: a guide

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  • #734
    Orion

    Image by Lothar Dieterich

    Why finding previously written character builds is important

    Playing a NWN Character is a significant investment of time, and playing a character to level 40 can take many, many hours, sometimes weeks, months even years depending on the environment and how often the player plays NWN!

    For serious players, and especially those who like their characters to be well designed, mapping out a character build in advance is important. This is because often, actions done previously cannot be undone.

    A player is able to design a character build in advance using tools such as Kamiryn’s Character Build Calculator Excel Spreadsheet or using pen / paper if they are very familiar with the NWN (DnD 3.0 edition) rules.

    However often it repays substantial dividends to see if similar character builds have been created and playtested before, and considering the design elements before creating your own build and diving into playing. These previously explored ideas can be of great assistance for the build the player eventually creates.

    Or the player might even just play the previously written build as it meets their needs, with minor or no modifications.

    There are a number of places a player can look for builds. This is as comprehensive a list I could make:

    The Epic Character Builder Forum Archives (2004-2010)

    Website address: http://world-of-greyhawk.github.io/buildsearch/index.html

    Archived files: https://neverwintervault.org/project/nwn1/other/epic-character-builders

    The Epic Character Builders Forum ran on the Bioware Forums between 2004-2010. It had 2669 unique members before its closure, when Bioware no longer continued supporting Neverwinter Nights 1 and no longer continued supporting the Bioware Forums. An enormous community effort led this forum being archived, and a search engine for these builds was coded by The_Krit, who is currently the site manager for the NWN Wiki. There are over a few thousand character builds and I know this as a fact having opened the raw data while working on a community project with the DPA and the ECB (see next paragraph). This is easily the best search engine currently available to search for character builds.

    The Epic Character Builder Forum Filter Search by DPA (2011 – mid 2019)

    Website address: https://resources.nwnworkshop.org/ecba.html (permission granted for me by DPA to host it, with thanks)

    Archived files: https://neverwintervault.org/project/nwn1/other/tool/ecb-guild-build-archive-v2

    Doesntplayanymore (DPA) wrote code for a search engine for a database called the ECB Forum Filter. It contains over 300 character builds. DPA was kind enough to give me permission to host it on my site.

    The ECB Forum Filter is an excel spreadsheet documenting builds from 2011 to mid 2019, it had been managed by HipMaestro and Stagmeister and was further updated by Doesntplayanymore and many ECB contributors (myself included) in mid 2019.

    This is a very good resource that I use often, that covers a gap with the first search engine.

    The ECB Tapatalk Forum

    Website address: https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/nwnecbguild/

    Inbuilt Tapatalk site forum search engine

    or Google Search (http://www.google.com):

    site:www.tapatalk.com/groups/nwnecbguild “Druid” “Monk”

    The ECB Tapatalk Forum is the continuation of the old ECB guild in the Bioware days. Originally run by Kail Pendragon and HipMaestro, the current moderators Stagmeister, Mick Dagger and Empyre65 run the forums, and it is a source of very active character building discussion.

    The search engine for the Tapatalk forums is not particularly user friendly to search for builds. A Google search of the site for specific builds I have found extremely helpful. One limitation is Google only indexes periodically, and misses some content. I discovered this when working on updating the ECB Forum Filter with DPA. So if you absolutely must have the latest Druid/Monk build in the last month, you will need to search via Tapatalk rather than Google.

    Image by Stefan Keller

    Specific Forums and Sites for Persistent Worlds (PW)

    These are all the PW character builds sections of the forums I could find or had access to. They are excellent resources for the specific environment you are playing in, and possibly in other environments as well.

    Arelith

    Website: http://wiki.nwnarelith.com/Character_Builds (Arelith Wiki)

    Blackstone Keep

    Website: https://blackstonekeep.com/viewforum.php?f=25 (Blackstone Keep Forum)

    World of Greyhawk

    Website: https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/worldofgreyhawkfr/character-building-f17/ (World of Greyhawk Forum)

    Dawn of Heroes

    Website: https://www.adawnofheroes.com/character-build-guide

    Victorian Nordock

    Website: https://victoriannordock.com/epic-builds/ and https://victoriannordock.com/building-guides/ (credit to arithonm, see reply)

    NWN Wiki: Character Builds

    Website address: https://nwn.fandom.com/wiki/Category:Character_builds

    This wiki page has quite a few character builds listed.

    The Neverwinter Vault

    Website address: https://neverwintervault.org/

    The Neverwinter Vault has some character builds listed in its pages, which can be searched.

    Google search

    If all else fails, type in “NWN” “Druid” “Monk” “Build” to try to find approach pages with these terms but you may find you pick up a number of irrelevant results, it isn’t as fun as the other options listed above.

     

    Final comments

    I hope you found this guide useful.

    If there are any missing resources I definitely want to add them, so please comment below and I will edit this article.

    #969
    arithonm

    Thanks for collecting all the Character Building Guides.

    Unfortunately, as you discovered, we lost access to the server that was running victorian-nordock.com/wiki/

    Luckily, I had a backup of the wiki, and I have started uploading the building guides to our new website: https://victoriannordock.com

    I’ve uploaded all the original Bioware Epic Building Guides I had to here: https://victoriannordock.com/epic-builds/

    I’m also in the process of uploading building guides for some of the builds I’ve made on Victorian Nordock to here: https://victoriannordock.com/building-guides/

    Arithon

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