Three Towns uses a vast array of custom systems for event handling, data persistence, etc. Here are a few of them:
TRANSPARENT PERSISTENT DATA SAVES
Three Towns does not use token, plot gems, or any other similar system for maintaining character data in between server restarts, nor do we use save games. Saves games have a tendency to corrupt and are not easily editable, and token systems add huge amounts of bloat to a module with huge numbers of plotbit-saving devices. The Three Towns system is capable of handling an infinite array of integers, strings, or floating point numbers without any in-game artifices like plot devices in your pack that are subject to bugs, stealing, loss, etc.
Tied closely with the data save system is the ability to restore journal entries to player characters based on their various quest statuses. At this time there is no way to restore anything written in the "Notes" page of the journal, however.
REST DISRUPTION SYSTEM
To limit the awesome power of "rest whenever" mages, many modules and the HCR add-on employ a rest delay timer, forcing a delay of up to 45 minutes in some recorded cases between rest cycles, in addition to no-rest dungeons. We feel that this is a bad solution, as (1) rests can be interrupted very easily by spawning creatures and inconsiderate teammates, and (2) it's no fun sitting around for half an hour just for the privelige of resting. Three Towns uses a hazard system where the more dangerous an area is, the more likely a local monster will spot your camping attempt and show up to interrupt you. This prevents unlimited resting mages, makes the control event a potentially interesting encounter, and prevents the boredom of a rest timer at bay.
To reflect the metal-poor environment of Three Towns, characters who wish to have metal-intensive gear made must bring in salvaged scrap metal to a local representative of the Guild of Smiths, who will pay the character for his efforts and make a note of the contribution in the log. When a character has brought in enough metal, the smith guild will make more and more services available to him, at better and better prices as the character's reputation increases. Using the smith vendors costs the character a small bit of reputation on each use as a control measure. Characters who gain or lose plateaus in their relations with the Guild of Smiths are notified of the event by floaty text and a message in the server chat box.
OTHER REPUTATION-BASED VENDORS
Three Towns uses two vendor systems that work on reputation, but on a static reputation based on certain characteristics rather than a points system like the Guild of Smiths. The Guild of Scribes controls the sale and distribution of all arcane scrolls of level 3 and up, and offers them to characters based on their levels of wizard or sorcerer or their Use Magic Device skill, in that order of preference, in addition to a modifier based on intelligence and charisma. The Guild of Bowyers and Fletchers provides a wider selection of bows, crossbows, and ammunition to players based on their class levels and feats. Preferential treatment is given for these categories in order: Rangers, Rogues, Fighters/Barbarians/Paladins, all other classes. Bonuses to Guild reputation are awarded for archery-specific feats like Point Blank Shot, representing a lifelong dedication to the art of archery.
VARIABLE VENDOR PRICING
Most vendors in Three Towns will vary their prices based on the character's Persuasion skill and charisma bonus, to represent haggling. In addition, additional price breaks are available to characters who have completed local quests, or quests of a more global nature.
RANDOM OVERLAND ENCOUNTER SYSTEM
When a character is making a trip that would logically take a long time, he has a chance of triggering a random encounter instead of simply transitioning to their destination. This could be anything from ambushing bandits to a wandering merchant.
TOWN BAN SYSTEM
When a player character attacks a town guard or NPC citizen, he is immediately outcast from that town, and the guards will not let him back in unless he pays a heavy fine. Being banned from all three towns results in Outlaw status. Paying off a ban will reduce the number of murders a character has recorded with that town.
PERMADEATH AND RESURRECTION SYSTEM
Characters of level 7 and up have 5 resurrections available to them, bringing them back to their bind point on a respawn with appropriate XP and gold penalties. Additional resurrections can be paid for on a sliding scale based on character level. If a player should be so careless as to respawn when he has zero resurrections, he is stripped of all gear and experience and placed back in the entry zone to start life over as a first level character.
Three Towns uses many of the SpellPak scripts by Kovi, with additional modifications and bug fixes. Details on spell changes can be found, with other information, in the player's journal.
SPAWN SYSTEM AND LOOT DROPPING
Three Towns employs the NWN Spawn System, authored by palor and modified by Mikey-Files, version 2.4.4e3. Version 2.4.4e4 (the User-Defined Event version) caused too many instabilities.
The loot drop system has been heavily modified for balance and the inclusion of custom items and the exclusion of others which were very overpowered or stupid.
EXTENDED PK SYSTEM (10/14/2002)
A player killing another player, where the victim respawns as a result, incurs rewards/penalties based on their respective levels. As of this writing, the XP/Gold actions are as follows:
In addition and seperate from this system is the Murder Count system, which also works on a respawn of the victim. Killing a PC who then respawns, for any reason, is reported to the victim's home town (their bind point). When 3 murders are reached in this fashion, the killer is then banned from that town. Further murders on citizens of a town you are already banned from as a result of murders start getting reported to other towns, who track murders and assign bans appropriately. If all 3 towns ban you due to murders, you are labeled Outlaw.
NOTE: Killing someone who is flagged as a Thief (see below) does not result in any penalties for killing him if he is 5+ levels lower than you.
OUTLAW SYSTEM (10/19/2002)
One may be flagged Outlaw through excessive murdering, as above, or through a special conversation option. The following changes apply to Outlaws:
An Outlaw may renounce his status by appealing to an authority figure in the hidden Outlaw settlement, but will have to pay off his bans with the Three Towns to regain town access.
PICKPOCKET SYSTEM (10/19/2002)
Pickpocketing is a very troublesome issue for NWN admins and builders, because the Aurora engine has TERRIBLE event handlers for stealing, and in normal games there is no way you can get your items back. The two most common solutions today are (1) disable pickpocketing altogether, or (2) leave it broken as all hell. Three Towns uses a system which does about as well as we could force the engine to do, though it has some bugs. EVERYONE WITH PICKPOCKET SKILL TRAINED NEEDS TO BE AWARE OF THESE CHANGES.