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When the Infinity Engine games started coming out (Baldur's Gate etc.), the one knock against them (aside from the unavoidable use of AD&D/D&D rule set which is a whole other discussion) was the Real time combat but this was largely alleviated, not by the pause feature itself but because of the 'auto-pause' feature which enabled a sort of , 'mostly turn-based' compromise. Trust me that most of us 'old school', tabletop RPG veterans would not bother trying to play BG and other IE games without the auto-pause feature. Party-based RPGs simply do not work well in real time (Yes, I have played Dungeon master, Eye of the Beholder etc. and find them very lacking), even for 'twitch gamers' who get no greater thrill than mashing tons of buttons a lot and quickly.

I avoided buying the first NWN game when it first came out because I had heard it was strictly real time but I later bought the Diamond ed. when it went on sale at Best Buy for like $10. It has been a long time since I played NWN but I remember playing through a few campaigns and other modules. Did we have to repeatedly hit the space bar/pause in every combat in that game?! Maybe that is why I stopped playing but I could have sworn they had an auto-pause feature like the IE games had.

So why in the world, regardless of whether NWN (the first one) had this feature or not, why would trhe developers NOT include such a feature in NWN2?! It makes no sense at all.
Post edited October 08, 2013 by SkeleTony
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SkeleTony: Did we have to repeatedly hit the space bar/pause in every combat in that game?! Maybe that is why I stopped playing but I could have sworn they had an auto-pause feature like the IE games had.
Can't answer for the reason (though I can make a guess) and don't miss the option myself, only using manual pause for BG as well (and I'm as old schools as they come).

More to my point, you probably weren't as bothered in NWN1 of the lack of autopause because you only had to control your own character, no control over the henchmen. Much less hassle.

Now when NWN2 was built on NWN foundations and there wasn't an autopause in the first one, I guess adding it didn't come up or was not considered worthwhile for some reason. Though the feature was in KotOR (and KotOR2 which also was Obsidian's work) so I'd think it'd have been an obvious consideration.
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SkeleTony: Did we have to repeatedly hit the space bar/pause in every combat in that game?! Maybe that is why I stopped playing but I could have sworn they had an auto-pause feature like the IE games had.
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Jarmo: Can't answer for the reason (though I can make a guess) and don't miss the option myself, only using manual pause for BG as well (and I'm as old schools as they come).

More to my point, you probably weren't as bothered in NWN1 of the lack of autopause because you only had to control your own character, no control over the henchmen. Much less hassle.

Now when NWN2 was built on NWN foundations and there wasn't an autopause in the first one, I guess adding it didn't come up or was not considered worthwhile for some reason. Though the feature was in KotOR (and KotOR2 which also was Obsidian's work) so I'd think it'd have been an obvious consideration.
Just now downloaded NWN (the 1st one) to my new laptop so I will check to see if it too lacked the autopause.

But the point you seem to not get regarding old school/turn based/auto-pause is this:

In BG and such it was at least somewhat approximate in replicating turn based combat because we could set up the auto-pause to pause automatically when, for example damage was taken or or the round was over or whatever.

So why was such not done for NWN 2?! It makes no sense whatsoever.

EDIT: Your point about NWN and not being allowed a real party to control makes sense. I was also a bit younger then and having to manually pause every 2 seconds was probably a little less troubling then but explains why I eventually stopped playing.
Post edited October 08, 2013 by SkeleTony
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SkeleTony: But the point you seem to not get regarding old school/turn based/auto-pause is this:

In BG and such it was at least somewhat approximate in replicating turn based combat because we could set up the auto-pause to pause automatically when, for example damage was taken or or the round was over or whatever.
Yeah, I got the point and love turn based games myself, I just ... kind of.. never saw BG as one,
didn't feel like trying to make it appear as one either. Might have liked it that way, never tried.

Despite being anything but turn-based and taking character control away from you during fights (the infamous dance of death), I still loved the combat of NWN, maybe more than that of any other D&D game. It's just a different thing entirely.

On semi-related note, have you tried Temple of Elemental Evil?
Because I think you'd like the combat of that one, pure turn based goodness.
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SkeleTony: When the Infinity Engine games started coming out (Baldur's Gate etc.), the one knock against them (aside from the unavoidable use of AD&D/D&D rule set which is a whole other discussion) was the Real time combat but this was largely alleviated, not by the pause feature itself but because of the 'auto-pause' feature which enabled a sort of , 'mostly turn-based' compromise. Trust me that most of us 'old school', tabletop RPG veterans would not bother trying to play BG and other IE games without the auto-pause feature. Party-based RPGs simply do not work well in real time (Yes, I have played Dungeon master, Eye of the Beholder etc. and find them very lacking), even for 'twitch gamers' who get no greater thrill than mashing tons of buttons a lot and quickly.

I avoided buying the first NWN game when it first came out because I had heard it was strictly real time but I later bought the Diamond ed. when it went on sale at Best Buy for like $10. It has been a long time since I played NWN but I remember playing through a few campaigns and other modules. Did we have to repeatedly hit the space bar/pause in every combat in that game?! Maybe that is why I stopped playing but I could have sworn they had an auto-pause feature like the IE games had.

So why in the world, regardless of whether NWN (the first one) had this feature or not, why would trhe developers NOT include such a feature in NWN2?! It makes no sense at all.
My guess is the devs really wanted to push the real time aspect of NWN to make the battles have a faster pace. In the IE games, it was possible to play real time but not very practical. With NWN, it's a lot easier to play without pausing due to the smaller party sizes and only having direct control over one character.

I agree with you that it would've been nice to set up some auto-pause conditions though.
Jaja
Post edited October 12, 2013 by deathknight1728
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Jarmo: [In NWN1]... you only had to control your own character, no control over the henchmen. Much less hassle.

Now when NWN2 was built on NWN foundations and there wasn't an autopause in the first one, I guess adding it didn't come up or was not considered worthwhile for some reason...
That does make good sense.

Another possible reason is that on Infinity Engine games, the most useful option was "auto-pause on enemy sighted" (added in the Tales of the Sword Coast expansion to BG1) due to the very short spotting range (especially with 640x480 resolution screens) meaning you could only "see" 2-3 character-heights' distance (giving you 1-2 seconds to react before melee).

NWN/NWN2 gave you the ability to see opponents from further away, making that particular auto-pause option less necessary. While IE games had other pause options (pause on death, serious injury, out of ammo) in practice I found (and still find) the enemy sighted to be the most useful. The only time I've used "pause on turn start" is with the final BG2 battle (with the Ascension mod) due to the magic-heavy nature of that combat and the need to know exactly when party members can start their next spell.
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SkeleTony: But the point you seem to not get regarding old school/turn based/auto-pause is this:

In BG and such it was at least somewhat approximate in replicating turn based combat because we could set up the auto-pause to pause automatically when, for example damage was taken or or the round was over or whatever.
avatar
Jarmo: Yeah, I got the point and love turn based games myself, I just ... kind of.. never saw BG as one,
didn't feel like trying to make it appear as one either. Might have liked it that way, never tried.

Despite being anything but turn-based and taking character control away from you during fights (the infamous dance of death), I still loved the combat of NWN, maybe more than that of any other D&D game. It's just a different thing entirely.

On semi-related note, have you tried Temple of Elemental Evil?
Because I think you'd like the combat of that one, pure turn based goodness.
Trust me that I have played all of the turn-based D&D games (though I spent very little time and effort on the Dragonlance games, partially because I did not think much of the books) and known ToEE well. Best combat in any D&D game.
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Jarmo: [In NWN1]... you only had to control your own character, no control over the henchmen. Much less hassle.

Now when NWN2 was built on NWN foundations and there wasn't an autopause in the first one, I guess adding it didn't come up or was not considered worthwhile for some reason...
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AstralWanderer: That does make good sense.

Another possible reason is that on Infinity Engine games, the most useful option was "auto-pause on enemy sighted" (added in the Tales of the Sword Coast expansion to BG1) due to the very short spotting range (especially with 640x480 resolution screens) meaning you could only "see" 2-3 character-heights' distance (giving you 1-2 seconds to react before melee).

NWN/NWN2 gave you the ability to see opponents from further away, making that particular auto-pause option less necessary. While IE games had other pause options (pause on death, serious injury, out of ammo) in practice I found (and still find) the enemy sighted to be the most useful. The only time I've used "pause on turn start" is with the final BG2 battle (with the Ascension mod) due to the magic-heavy nature of that combat and the need to know exactly when party members can start their next spell.
Yeah I used the "When enemy spotted", and "when PC damaged" conditions for the most part but it was nice having the options to bring combat as close to turn-based as one needed.
Post edited October 16, 2013 by SkeleTony
Hey SkeleTony,

I did wonder this myself actually. While not a pen and paper D&D'er I did use the auto pause options a lot in the BG series. one of the things I do miss was the auto pausing after spell cast; combine this with improved alclarity and the almighty robes of vecna to unleash your entire spell book on the foe!

From what I have learned each round is 6 seconds, within those 6 seconds you can have a single standard action and a move action and possibly a free action. The spells I've cast seem to have a similar timer of 3 seconds.

The info I pulled was from the nwn2 wiki site.

Just did a bit of testing. Seems like while casting a spell you have about 1.5 seconds to 2 seconds to change your mind in which case you can interrupt it with a move without wasting the spell (however you waste the turn). Once you have passed over that threshold you are locked into place, but can still tell your character to move afterwards without fear of interrupting the spell casting firing animation.

Actually an autopause would be very helpful if it engaged right after the "Standard action" as it is far to easy to interrupt your ability/spell casting if you plan on running to escape the AOE you just unleashed. I noticed there is a mod out there that pauses after every round (6 seconds), but I wonder if it would be possible to get one that paused after every "standard action" (ie any ability that isn't a move) and round. This would add a much more interesting tactical layer as you could then use the rest of the round more effectively for placement of your characters with no fear of wasting your turn; perhaps add a circle radius which gives you a maximum run distance so you can see how far you can move before the next round started.
Technically I think that its possible to code (in NWscript). Mind you, it wouldn't be exactly perfectly clean as it would probably require a separate UI.
Post edited November 13, 2013 by AGhost_7
It was a deliberate design decision. I won't waste too much of your time with the official statements at the time. They involved making the game "more MP friendly" and "moving into a more real-time environment".
Stumbled across this thread after doing a Google search - and GOG was the first hit.

I didn't think about it on the official NWN2 campaign but it became an issue with Mask of the Betrayer. I think it's because I'm finding the combat brutal and therefore also want to micromanage every round.

Bloody Safiya wants to go on an ethereal jaunt and I'm getting pasted from all directions.
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SkeleTony: When the Infinity Engine games started coming out (Baldur's Gate etc.), the one knock against them (aside from the unavoidable use of AD&D/D&D rule set which is a whole other discussion)
That was the only reason I bought those games. Without the AD&D ruleset, I wouldn't have touched those games with a cattle prod.