To Host or not to Host

   I recently added NWN as a project because I am tempted to make an NWN persistent module for testing ideas about game play.

   This was stimulated by a recent request for my help with some NWN scripts. I am very busy with other things, but I know that I will lend my help. Since I am going to dust off the toolset, I was thinking that I might as well also put my energy into a project that reflects my interests. On the other hand, I question whether my interests should still include NWN.

   The problem with spending time building things in NWN is that the skills I develop tinkering with it are only tangential to the professional development I need to focus on. I have already plowed that field and reaped the harvest. I have other hobby projects I can also work on like the Tiles project which is essentially a web development project, and thus far more useful than tinkering with NWN's scripting language. Another thing that I have not yet done with NWN however is integrate a website with its game server. This is an itch that I want to scratch, and it includes web development and database design so I can pretend I am not wasting my time.

   I can use NWNX to write information about the game state from the game server to the database, and the website can read and present snapshots of this data asynchronously. I do not see a need for the two to be in synch. The server's web page can display a ledger of what just happened rather than provide a window to observe changes in real time.

   I created a silly module a few months ago and posted it to the Neverwinter Vault, the demo at that link. This module, I think, is a good starting place for my lab. One key ingredient is that it is hakless. No additional custom content is required for players to log in. A low barrier to entry helps since I will not be recruiting test subjects. I just want them to be curious enough to log in.

   Yes, I will host this module, and tinker with it over time. The first step is to import my scripts for integrating with NWNX's database plugin. After that I just need to check that my NWN server still works. I should be able to find time this week, and get this done. Once the module is up, I can start thinking about what data I will track so that I can learn from scenarios I post. I can probably do that after I make a scenario too. Worse is better, and all that.