Best cRPGs: Current Ranking:

1. Jagged Alliance 2 (99%): God-king of cRPGs6. Icewind Dale (84%) Almost perfect pacing
2. Fallout (94%) Best pure cRPG. Pro-tips7. Icewind Dale 2 (82%) Pushed IE to the limit
3. Baldur's Gate (92%) Does everything well.8. Temple of Elemental Evil (79%) 3.5 employment
4. Fallout 2 (90%) More Fallout
9. Silent Storm (76%) Destructibility & verticality
5. Arcanum (86%) Tarant = best single area ever10. Planescape: Torment (72%) Loved & loathed

Commercial cRPGs only. Otherwise, Swordflight is ranked above Baldur's Gate.

AIELUND SAGA Enhanced Edition: Walkthrough Guide Review: Part I: Builds, Companions, Items, Weapons



Hi guys! My name's Lilura1 and welcome to my walkthrough for and review of the Aielund Saga

• The award-winning Aielund Saga is an epic, medieval high fantasy D&D campaign consisting of four sprawling Acts, with Act IV broken up into three Parts. It is one of the flagship heroic adventures for the Neverwinter Nights game, and a great showcase for community custom content.

If you're just beginning to explore the jungle of NWN modules, I don't think there is a better introduction than the Aielund Saga, especially if you grew up with classics such as Baldur's Gate and Icewind Dale. However, when you are done with the Aielund Saga, I would recommend playing Swordflight: the apex of NWN modules.

In the Kingdom of Aielund, trouble is brewing. While the king leads an army against enemies in the far west, the poorly-protected realm is under attack from brigands, goblinoids, and barbarians from the east. And rumors of a conspiracy are growing as the remaining military forces do little to stem the tide. Into this vacuum of power steps a small band of daring individuals, who must try to keep the region intact while tracking down the conspirators who seek to divide the land for themselves. - DM Savant.

Best Builds [link

Most of the builds in that link are viable in Aielund. However, if you're new to NWN, I would recommend the Paladin, Rogue and Archer. If you want to be very hard to kill, roll with the Dwarven Defender.

For weapon focus, I'd recommend scimitar, katana or rapier (if Finesse). I guess katana is the coolest weapon in Aielund, though. If rolling with an archer, fire from longbows.

On the other hand, there are no arcane spellcaster companions in Aielund until deep into the campaign. Thus, WizardSorcerer or even Bard make sense. Just note that these are more difficult to play in Aielund if you don't have a good grip on the magic system; as in, which spells to cast, and when.

Race-wise, most players are going to go with Human through DwarfElf and Half-Elf are good choices in Aielund. GnomesHalflings and Half-Orcs are not as popular but make for great Illusionists, Rogues and Barbarians.

• Act One: Nature Abhors a Vacuum
Part I (this post): Introduction, Bracksworth, Southern Highway, Fort Highmarch, Northern Highway.
Part II: Culdeny.
Part III: Calespur Ranges & Calespur Caverns.
Part IV: Southern Foothills, High Plains & Bracksworth Attacked!
Part V: Central Plains, Steel Tiger Hideout, Princess Criosa, the Siege of Culdeny & the Black Cavalier!
Item Codes: Act I [link]

• Act TwoDefender of the Crown
Part I: Pirate Attack on The Redoubtable!
Part II: Fairloch & the Thieves' Guild
Part III: Amalis Highway, Kingswood, the Orc Fortress & the Assassins' Guild
Part IV: Attack on the Senate & The Feybourne
Part V: Stoneguard Mountains & The Valley of Silence
Part VI: The Isle of the Dead
Part VII: Castle Fairloch & The Castellan
Item Codes: Act II [link]

• Act ThreeReturn of the Ironlord
Part I: Castle Fairloch & Stoneguard Mountains Revisted
Part II: The Pass & Azurefang, The Eastern Highway & Spartan, Culdeny & Calespur Revisited
Part III: Bracksworth Revisited, the Southern Foothills, Cairnwood Forest, Acadia and the Forgotten City
Part IV: High Plains, Highmarch Mountains, Road to Fort Highmarch, Highmarch Foothills
Part V: Fort Highmarch, the Abode of the Damned & Trinity
Part VI: Sandstorm, Desert Fortress & Hall of the Ancients
Part VII: Trinity & The Ironlord's Siege of Fort Highmarch
Item Codes: Act III [link]

• Act FourThe Fall of Aielund
◦ Part I.
Part I: Castle Fairloch, Lords' District, Hocarum Desert & the Dire Crossing
Part II: Tusonite/Aielund Desert Battle, the City of Myrfell
Item Codes: Act IV, Pt. I [link]

◦ Part II.
Part III: The Eastern Front & The Battle for Bracksworth
Part IV: Bracksworth, the Lowmarch & Hiring Mercs in Trinity
Part V: The Southern Foothills & Cairnwood Aflame
Part VI: Black Tiger Tribal Grounds, The Battle of Silent Valley & the Tower of Blackwood Glade
Part VII: The Battle for Fairloch & The Ironlord's Fall
Item Codes: Act IV, Pt. II [link]

◦ Part III.
Part VIII: Blackwood Glade & the Vault
Part IX: Myrfell & Osric's Downfall
Part X: The Hall of Worlds, Assumption & Mount Erebus
Part XI: The Border Ethereal & the Dragon's Throne
Part XII: Twilight, the Bastion & the Ruins of Botai
Part XIII: The Eternal Battlefield: Assault on Acheron & Abaddon
Part XIV: Assault on the Citadel of the Saqaarin
Part XV: The Supreme Commander & the Destruction of the Citadel
Item Codes: Act IV, Pt. III [link]
• NWN Index [link
• Browse walkthrough [link]

Installation instructions are posted at the end of this post.

Nature Abhors a Vacuum

The adventure begins in the town of Bracksworth, in the Kingdom of Aielund:

  
We begin in our room in the Bracksworth Inn. Rain can be heard outside, and distant thunder. 

Search the room for a chest and an armoire holding articles of clothing. 

The cushion on the bed allows us to rest, which replenishes our HPs and spellslots (Cushion of Considerable Comfort).

Note how when we loot the chest, there are actually TWO inventory pages. Remember this as you play or you may miss out on loot.

Note: With the release of v.3.0: Enhanced Edition, Savant has changed the name of the town to Bracksford. I don't want to change every instance in my walkthrough, so just keep that in mind.

Anyway, head downstairs to the common room.

Companions. There are two companions in the common room that can join our party: 

◦ Dante ColtChaotic Good Human Fighter (1)

Unshaven, and apparently unwashed, this man seems to care little for social conventions but looks tough and ready for anything.

◦ Nellise Sanneman: Lawful Good Aasimar Cleric (1)

This incredibly beautiful woman is obviously only partly human. She returns your inquiring gaze with a smile.


Note that Nellise eventually gets the Hammer of the Gods spell, which is very powerful.

• Player Tool 1. The "Player Tool 1" feat was added by Balkoth for v.3.0. We can click on it and then click on the ground where we want our companions to move, or click on the enemy that we want them to attack, among other things. USEFUL. Assign it to a Quickbar slot. To do that, right-click on a quickbar slot, navigate to the Player Tool icon, and click on it. Then, click on the icon in the cell and click on the ground somewhere. The companions should move to where you clicked.

The Innkeeper requests a batch of ale from Culdeny brewery in the north. But to do that, first we need to find the mayor and get permission to leave town. Forget this quest for now.

Speak with mayor Olaf in his office opposite the inn. We need to help him with a troublemaker called Merin, whose home is between the tanner and the smithy. Merin attacks when we move to collect the documents from the drawer, so slay her and return to Olaf: 750 EXP, 75 GP (original: 400 XP).

The mayor now gives us the southgate pass. He wants us to deliver Requisition Forms to Fort Highmarch.

The Half-orc smithy asks us to bring him a node of iron. Forget this quest for now.

Farmers. These are optional quests. The first farmer wants us to clear his barn of rats. Slay them and give the dire rat tail to the farmer: 200 EXP, 50 GP. Then, another farmer tells us about noises in his barn. Talk to the man in the barn and then tell the farmer it was just the wind: 150 EXP, 20 GP.

We're level 2 now.

• Tomb of the Exiled Knight. In the Scribe's house we read a tome (50 EXP). We can't do this quest yet. There is an expensive set of Elven Chain on offer from the scribe.

The druid Hasrinaxx sells a useful item for Druids, but it's expensive: Belt of Vines: bonus spellslot Druid 1-3. 

In the Paddock there is an oddly mooing cow which we think deserves investigation. It turns out to be two men in costume attempting to catch a wolf. When the wolf actually appears, the two men run off in fear -- still in the costume -- leaving it for us to kill (100 EXP).

Ok, let's get out of this dump.

• The Road to Highmarch. With the initial questing out of the way, we head through the south gate onto the southern highway.

Fight wolves. Up ahead is a corpse and three chests surrounding a wagon, which we loot for the Raise Dead scroll and the blacksmith's iron node (weight = 100.5). Give the iron to Dante if you can't carry it.

Wolf Den. We keep heading south to the snowy Highmarch Foothills, where we encounter yet more wolf packs and a den packed full of wolves. Killing them all off we come out with 87 GP, a Wand of Magic Missiles and a Darkness spell. At a small bridge we confront an Alpha Wolf.

We arrive at Fort Highmarch and use Persuade to give the Requisition Forms to the Guard Captain (+200 GP, +250 EXP).

We're level 3 now.

The guard captain now asks us to deliver military documents to the mayor. We are time-lapsed back to Bracksworth.

Back in Bracksworth, we return the iron node to the Half-orc smithy (350 EXP, Amulet of Natural Armor +1). The smithy's inventory also expands.

We deliver the military documents to the mayor (100 GP, 400 EXP). Next, he wants us to take out the brigands and highwaymen blockading the north. He hands us a pass to the north gate.

• Bandit blockade. The northern highway carves a path through a thickly wooded forest. Slay the bandit leader and loot his head.

Head north, bash through the makeshift barrier, and cross the bridge into the town of Culdeny.

Important note: The rest of this post (Part I) covers the plot-critical path only. It is going to be a streamlined version of my main walkthrough. If you want to read coverage of optional quests, stop reading this post and contine on with Part II instead.
 

Get the shipment of ale from Chelland in the brewery. Then, get Roim to timelapse us back to Bracksworth. Give the Ale Keg to the inkeeper and the bandit's head to the mayor: 200 GP, 300 XP + 500 GP, 500 XP.

Note that the smithy sells masterwork arms and armor. It results in AC +3 over what we had.


• The Initials R.B. Head to the Church and speak to Priestess Celeste. She asks us to check out the crypt next to the church. Enter the crypt, detect a trapdoor on the floor near the statue and drop down. Slay the goblins and loot Urak's corpse at the end of the tunnel for Goblin Orders signed with the initials "R.B". Loot the Gem-Studded Necklace as well, then climb the ladder back up and place the necklace on the statue: 300 XP. Now, return to Celeste in the church: 350 XP, 300 GP.

• Rumors of Conspiracy. Next, go to the barracks and deliver the Goblin Orders to the commander. "R.B" points to Robert Bartlett at the North Shore Trading Company. At the company building, speak with the secretary to learn the conditions of entry for the Gentleman's Club upstairs. At the mayor's office, learn from Donan about the illegal hunting going on in the Calespur Ranges (optional quest). Get the Gentleman's Club Key by persuading or bluffing the mayor. Re-enter the club, head upstairs and speak with both Ronald Bartlett and Robert Black. When they both hurry off, speak with the secretary again and return to the commander in the barracks, who issues a warrant for their arrest: 1,000 XP.

At this point, Mayor Olaf of Bracksworth, Clavis MacTavish in Culdeny as well as Donan the ranger and the mayor of Culdeny all point to problems in the Calespur Ranges. However, Calespur is NOT critical to plot progression: providing we completed Rumors of a Conspiracy and delivered the bandit leader's head to the major of Bracksworth, we can speak to him again immediately in order to trigger the Barbarian Threat, which kicks off the next phase of the main quest.

• Barbarian Threat. Go and see Commander Redfurn in the Bracksworth barracks. We need to hunt down the half-orc barbarian, Erag, in the High Plains. She gives us a pass to the East gate

Starting in the northwest of the Southern Foothills, simply head eastward to reach the High Plains. Open the gate to the Barbarian camp, slay the horde and enter Erag's hideout by way of the cave.

Hope you have a torch or the Light spell because it's dark inside. The place is stacked with tanky barbarians but all we need to do is make our way to the southeast of the level. Morik Far-Eagle is inconsequential.

On the lower level, all we need to do is slay Erag in the southwest. Then, loot his head for proof that he's dead.

Return the head to the commander in Bracksworth: 1,000 XP, 1,000 GP.

• The Kidnapping of Princess Criosa. Next, head to the inn and speak with the mayor. We need to track down the mercs and save the princess. Exit, and drop down the trapdoor behind the inn. Weave through the tunnel and climb up the ladder to reach the Bracksworth Plains. Slay the mercs and enter the Steel Tiger hideout in the northeast.

Head west, north and then west again to find Criosa in a cell. Recruit her. Then, head east along the northern, trap-laden passageway and then south to find a door leading downward.

Locate Bartlett's corpse (bludgeoned to death by mountain giant), loot it of the note, and exit to the mountain pass.

• Battle of Culdeny. Slay the mercenary force led by Commander Robert Black. When looting his corpse of cool items, note that his inventory has two pages.

Return to Culdeny with Criosa: 2,000 XP, 1,500 GP.

Strip Nellise and Dante of their gear before speaking to Captain Vale at the docks.

Act 1 ends.

Defender of the Crown

• Pirate Attack. We're on the Redoubtable ship bound for the city of Fairloch. From belowdecks, head up to the captain's cabin to speak with Captain Vale. On the deck, Lieutenant Masterson asks you to tell the captain the ship is being followed. We are timelapsed back belowdecks as the Redoubtable comes under attack by pirates. Head back up to the deck, slay the pirates, swing across to the pirate ship by rope, enter the captain's cabin, slay the pirate captain and loot the chest for the Pirate's Orders. Swing back to the Redoubtable and give the orders to the captain.


• Escorting the Princess. We've arrived in the Docklands of Fairloch city. Head up on-deck and speak with the Captain. We need to escort Criosa to the castle. Recruit Ronan and Criosa


Head down the gangplank and onto the jetty, then take the eastern exit. In the marketplace, en route to the castle and just north of the playhouse, we may get waylaid by assassins. Loot the note from one of their corpses.

More companions:

◦ Valennia (Barbarian): Docklands inn (Docks)
◦ Sir William (Paladin): Fair Maiden Inn (Marketplace)
◦ Maggie (Druid): Tradeway Tavern (Residential District)


So now we have a party of five.

• Defender of the Crown quest. Fairloch Castle is east of the marketplace. Speak with the Castellan and enter the King's Court to speak with Duke Montague. Give him the assassin's note. Criosa leaves the party (200 XP). The Duke and Sir Godfrey ask us to track down the assassins hunting Criosa. We are given a Letter of Marque to show Captain Deckard of the City Watch. Deckard is stationed in the guardhouse in the Docklands. He's upstairs. He tells us we need to find the Thieves' Guild in the sewers under the Marketplace.


We learn from Peridoc Dabbenfold that the assassin guild is located beneath an art gallery in the Senate District, north of the Marketplace. Go there and enter. The secret door to the assassin's guild is built into the wall just to the left of Julia. Again, we want a torch or the Light spell.

There are two levels to the guild. Passageways are heavily trapped. We are basically raiding the guild, slaying all assassins in our way. There is a locked door on the second level that can't be bashed down. Employ Knock or Ronan's skills.

Behind that door is the assassin guild leader, Holister Swiftblade. Disperse his illusions and beat him up until he surrenders and gives up paperwork on the conspirators. We can either let him go after he gives up his gear or finish him off and take it from his corpse.

At this point, we can burglarize the Bartlett Estate to the west of the guild (behind the library) and take the Sealed Letter from the desk upstairs, which we can present to Captain Deckard: 700 XP. Head down to the guardhouse dungeon to interrogate Bartlett. From him we learn that we need to investigate Senator Augustus Johnson.

Go to the castle's court and get the key to the Johnson estate from Sir Godfrey. Back in the Senate District, enter the estate, slay the butler and loot the Satchel full of papers from upstairs.

• Night of the Long knives. Head back downstairs, then down into the senator's basement. Take the secret door that leads into Senate District sewers. Then, head west and then north (as per the mini-map) to another secret door leading to a hidden passage at the end of which is the secret entrance to the Senate Building.

Head in, head upstairs and interrupt the in-session senate. Slay the Shadow Warriors that break in, talk to the House Speaker and then beat up Johnson until he surrenders. We are escorted to the King's Court by the Knight Captain, where we give Sir Godfrey the Satchel of papers: 2,000 XP, 10,000 GP.

• The Scepter of Transcendence. At court, the Duke gives us Ancient Artefacts From Old Tymes. We are to explore The Feybourne, Stoneguard Mountains and The Isle of the Dead in search of the scepter. This involves slaying a dragon (Deathmist), taking out a horde of Duergar and destroying a Lich.

If you read this far then we are up to here now. You can continue with that link. Reminder: What you have read here is a streamlined rewrite that hammers out the plot-critical path. I posted it to help new players get going.

Note that Desmond at the Halls of Knowledge offers crafting services similar to Rizolvir.

• Browse walkthrough [link]
• Builds [link]

Installation Instructions

Steam users don't need to bother with this.

Note: You don't need NWN:EE to play Aielund Saga EE. This is just what Savant decided to call his update because it was released around the same time NWN:EE was released, and because it is enhanced in that it contains bugfixes, extended dialogues, extra companion control, support for a larger party and a bit more eye-candy. For more info, search this document for [changes].

Ok, so you want to play Savant's Aielund Saga but where do you download it from and how do you install it? Well, this post should help newbies who have never installed a NWN module before.

First things first, make sure your game is patched to 1.69. Even if it's the GoG version I would run this to be sure, as some people have had problems getting community content to work, which the patch seemed to fix each time. So, patch your game!

In addition I suggest you completely back up your pristine Neverwinter Nights install to somewhere safe before you starting messing around with it, just in case you stuff something up. You also need 7-Zip to extract the zip, rar and 7z archives, so grab it here if you don't already have it. Done that? Ok...

The Aielund Saga consists of four Acts with Act IV consisting of three Parts. Download the files from neverwintervault.org, which I've linked to directly for your convenience:

(the_aielund_saga_act_i_nature_abhors_a_vacuum_313.rar)
(the_aielund_saga_act_ii_defender_of_the_crown_312.rar)
(the_aielund_saga_act_iii_return_of_the_ironlord_313.rar)
(the_aielund_saga_act_iv_the_fall_of_aielund_pt1_307.rar)
Download this archive (the_aielund_saga_act_iv_the_fall_of_aielund_pt2_310.rar)
Note that there are reports that v.3.10 Part II is buggedDownload 3.08 if you encounter problems!

The Aielund Saga Act IV - The Fall of Aielund (Part Three) 
(the_aielund_saga_act_iv_the_fall_of_aielund_pt3_307.rar)

• Downloaded them? Ok, use 7-Zip to extract the modules somewhere temporary (ie, NOT in your NWN installation folder) and open the first folder (the_aielund_saga_act_i nature_abhors_a_vacuum) to find a readme and two module files inside:

The Aielund Saga Act I - Nature Abhors a Vacuum.mod and
The Aielund Saga Act II - Defender of the Crown.mod

What? Why is Act II in here? It's not, it's just a "placeholder" mod - hence its small size - for when the Saga was in development; ignore it.

• Now, place The Aielund Saga Act I - Nature Abhors a Vacuum.mod to your NWN modules folder - normally located in:

C:\Program Files (x86)\NeverwinterNights\NWN (NWN:DE) or
C:\Users\[username]\Documents\Neverwinter Nights (NWN:EE)

- and do the same for the other Acts, ignoring the placeholder mod each time. Note that the the_aielund_saga_act_iv_the_fall_of_aielund_pt3 folder contains two modules, one of which is the Finale.mod. Make sure you place it in, too! You should now have seven Aielund modules in your module folder.

The modules are now installed but we need to grab some other archives, as well, containing many necessary files required by the Saga. Please don't be intimidated by this. I will walk you through it, step by step. And believe me, it's all worth it.

(cep_2_65_full_0.7z)
(aielund_ems_finale_haks_v3_1.7z)
(abyss.rar)
(elvencityv1.26.rar) 
Savant removed this from v.3.0 due to conflicts.
(shipinteriordds.rar)
(paintingpack_0.zip) 

(aielundmusic_0.zip)

As of Jan-03-2018 (the release date of v.3.0: Aielund Saga: Enhanced Edition), you will also need the following hak:

(mountainsnow_1.7z)

• Use 7-Zip to extract all of these archives somewhere temporary; the process may take quite a while because of all the content.

Done that? Ok, let's go through these one at a time...

• Open the cep_2_65 folder and navigate to the haks folder. Place all haks to your NWN haks folder. Now, navigate to the tlk folder and place the five tlk files into your NWN tlk folder. If you don't have one, create it. CEP is now installed!

• Next, open the aielund_and_ems_haks folder and place aielund_finale.hak, aielund_hakpak.hak and ems.hak into your NWN haks folder. Note that arQon's EMS is optional and somewhat controversial. On the one hand, anti-EMS people complain of its lack of documented changes; on the other, the author (Savant) and the maintainer (Balkoth) recommend it. Play how you like.

• Next, open the abyss, elvencity, shipinterior and paintingpack folders and place abyss.hak, ElvenCity.hak, Ship-Interior.hak and PaintingPack.hak into your NWN hak folder.

• Next, open the aielundmusic folder and place the 12 bmu files into your NWN music folder.

• Now for the new stuff that Savant added with v.3.0: Aielund Saga: Enhanced Edition. Open the mountainsnow_1 folder and place mountainsnow.hak into your NWN hak folder.

Installation complete.

• [Changes]

◦ Note that horses as mounts (for you and your companions) has been removed in v3.0:EE of Aielund (due to the potential for bug introduction). Similarly, the Elven City Tileset has been omitted.

◦ Balkoth has released a mod (Balkoth's Minion Control) that will give you greater control of your companions, summons, familiars and animal companions. Employing Player Tool 1, it allows you to command units to move to a certain position, attack a certain creature etc.

◦ v.3.0 of Aielund supports max party of five rather than just three. NWN native scaling of spawns based on party size should keep the challenge up, but I haven't personally confirmed it.

◦ "Bracksworth" has been renamed to "Bracksford" for reasons of consistency with Savant's subsequent novels. Sorry, but I can't be assed updating every instance in the walkthrough to reflect that change.

◦ Optionally, you may also install Zwerkule's Facelift haks and Real Skies as an override or patch hak. Depending on your PC, these may noticeably increase loadtimes and decrease framerates.

Download Mines & Caverns Tileset (biomines_0.7z), Forest Tileset (bioforest.7z), Placeables (bioplcs.7z), Winter Tileset (biosnow.7z), Rural Tileset (biorural.7z), Interior Tileset (biointerior.7z).

Real Skies (Optional)
Download real_skies169.rar if you have the original NWN or real_skies_102.rar if you have NWN:EE.

◦ In regard to that last one, to be clear, the former is for people who have 1.69 CR Neverwinter Nights: Diamond Edition and the latter is for people who have Neverwinter Nights: Enhanced Edition.

Can I play oldschool Aielund, the version before the EE changes? Yes, and there are some advantages in doing so. For example, loadtimes are faster, we can ride horses, and the elven city tileset is preserved. This was the exact version I wrote the walkthrough for. Links are as follows:

Modules: Act I -- Act II -- Act III -- Act IV Part I -- Act IV Part II -- Act IV Part III

Haks etc.: cep_2_60_full_0 -- Aielund & EMS -- Abyss -- Elven City -- Ship Interiors -- Painting Pack -- Music

On the other hand, we don't get any of the v.3.0 enhancements, and there are some bugs and glitches. But then, it's not like v.3.0 is free of bugs and glitches, is it? And I managed to write this walkthrough for oldschool Aielund, proving that it's sound. Naturally, the choice is yours.

◦ If you don't want to use Enhanced Magic System (EMS) in Aielund, simply use the fake hak instead (renamed to EMS.hak).

***

Browse all [link] Part II [link]
• Builds [link] • Spells [Index]  • NWN Index [link• Items [link• Best Modules [link]

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