It is not necessary to download anything additional to play on Arelith servers. Only NWN with both extensions (SoU and HotU) and latest official updates is needed to play on Arelith servers.
It is forbidden to use any heads or body parts that would make your character appear missing part of their bodies to other players without additional downloads. If you make such characters then you will have to remake them.
Therefore it is advised to temporarily clear your hak and override folders before creating character on Arelith.
Custom portraits, Portraits and Voices of NPCs are possible to use, as well as any visual overrides that don't effect other players. This includes custom sound sets, tile sets, animations, cloak visibility, the game interface, things that can only effect the client.
Note: Arelith is definitely NOT "hack free". It uses a number of hacks - overrides, NWNX, and so on - to enhance the experience on server side. It is, however, "hak free" - as in, no downloadable content is required by players to play. Quite a big difference there.
Haks and Overrides
- (written by Montaugh)
A hak file is a modification to the toolset/modules beyond what the you can normally do with the toolset/module. When you download a hak the module designer specifies which hak files that they are using. They can be used to add things like new monsters (rust monster is my personal favorite) or new tilesets, weapon/clothing appearances ect... In order to play on a server which uses hak files you must download the haks that are required.
Now an override file works like this... when you put something into your override file it tells the game to use your file rather then the usual file. A good example of this is to put an altered copy of the polymorph.2da file into your override folder and then play a local (not online) module with beefy shape shiftings.
Now the override file is fairly unique in that the server you are playing on dictates which game playing alterations will take place. Arelith and I have two different overrides for polymorph.2da when I am playing on Arelith.. the server's .2da files override the standard ones and any others that you might have kicking around.
So in short:
- Hak files: allow additional modifications to the game which are not normally available and all players must posses in order to play.
- Override files: override existing/standard features of the game without adding something that doesn't exist. Merely expands on what is there and are local or server specific.
CEP and other Hakpaks
Arelith is not using CEP or any other Hack packs that would have to be downloaded separately.
This issue was discussed numerous time and the possibility of using any in the future was rejected by developers.