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RPGDot 2001 Awards
Most Anticipated RPG

The RPGDot Team, 2002-01-10

In the last weeks of December 2001, you had the opportunity to vote for the best RPGs released in 2001. Nobody knows better what these are then you the player and as such The RPGDot 2001 Awards will look good on any game receiving one.
We thank all those who entered their votes and helped us in making it possible to select the best games.

Most Anticipated RPG

Is there an RPG which you definitely want to play in 2002? Is there one game that you believe can do it for you..... the game that will keep you up night and day? Our voters think so and they had one clear choice. Is that yours too?

The winner: Neverwinter Nights
This is one of the most anticipated CRPGs today. It also may never see the light of day. The basic premise of NWN is that players will design dungeon levels, and other adventures as in depth as they can make them, and then open their computer up to Internet players to come and experience. Up to 64 players can be in one game at a time. Cheaters can be banned by their CD key, which may help NWN avoid becoming the RPG equivalent of Counterstrike. Servers can be connected, allowing players to hop from one to the other in a truly huge adventure that will rival or surpass anything the current MMORPGs can offer.

All this remains speculation as we may never see it.

The makers, Bioware, are currently in dispute with the license holders, Interplay, over royalty payments form previous released Bioware titles. Until this is resolved Neverwinter will not be released. If this is not resolved, Interplay will have to either scrap the project completely, or hire a new development team to start again from scratch, meaning no NWN before 2004. Let’s hope they can work out their differences.


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Runner Up: Morrowind
After Daggerfall, I thought: "well, Battlespire could be IT". Nope. Then there was Redguard, and although it was a nice game, it was never intended to become a second, a better Daggerfall.

Since Bethesda Sorftworks announced Morrowind, a great number of CRPG fans followed its development with keen eyes and big ears. Here at RPGDot, we put up every newsbit we could get hold of, and we were about the first to bring an interview with the developers. When the first screenshots were published, my jaw dropped to the ground: the game was a feast for the eyes.

But there were concerns, too. Daggerfall was known for the bugs, which were more or less design flaws and never got ironed out. Bethesda had ruined its reputation in that respect, and Battlespire didn't help at all. Redguard was two classes ahead, and so there is hope that Morrowind will be playable from the beginning - in fact, it has to be that way, since it will be an Xbox game, too (It's hard to patch console games). They allowed themselves a couple of more months for testing at Bethesda, and let's hope that pays.

Morrowind could be one of the highlights 2002. The editor is said to be incredible, so be prepared for not just one great game, but a lot of stunning mods as well. When there is Morrowind, Neverwinter Nights and Dungeon Siege - where will spare time be, then?...


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Second Runner Up: Might & Magic 9
New World Computing is preparing a new Might & Magic game, the 9th to be specific. After parts 6 through 8 used a very aged graphics engine, 3DO this time licensed the Lith Tech Engine, and first screens show the game looks great indeed.

If 3DO manages to get the great RPG System, the motivating Advancement System, an interesting story, automap and all the others aspects that made MM 6 – 8 so addictive, into this one, players will surey love the new Might & Magic game.

Might & Magic 9 is still scheduled for a late March release, which would take place 2 years past part 8.

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The Numbers

A total of 53 games were entered as being the most anticipated RPG for 2002. But we narrowed it down to a top 10:

Neverwinter Nights
Might & Magic 9
Deus Ex 2
Dungeon Siege 6%
Shadowbane 6%
Divine Divinity 2%
Star Wars Galaxies 1%
Horizons 1%
Fallout 3 1%

And 19% of those who participated were unable to select one of the games.

We, the RPGDot team casted our votes also, so here is our top 3 (well 4 actually as there are two exactly on the same spot):

Divine Divinity 15%
Neverwinter Nights
Might & magic 9

Morrowind, Neverwinter Nights and Might & Magic 9, rank in the top 3 as well, but we also ranked Divine Divinity a lot higher. Maybe that's because some of our staff actually got to play that game when it was still in an alpha version and we think it deserves it's place there.

Note that percentages are rounded to the nearest number.

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