Login
 
RSS Feed Twitter Facebook YouTube

Neverwinter Review

Neverwinter is the newest Dungeons and Dragons MMORPG developed by Cryptic Studios and brought to us by Perfect World Entertainment. It features wizards, warriors, clerics, rogues, and other D&D stuff. This is one of those games I try to get super excited about because it’s a D&D game, and I’m just a huge fan of D&D. But I had to go home disappointed. Not because it’s a bad game, but because it’s not D&D.Neverwinter

First, let’s get the game parts out of the way:

The gameplay is mired in a standard array but with some very nice twists. When your role is to control the field, then most of you moves are tailored specifically to do that: You’re going to be freezing things, moving things, blasting things backwards and the like. If you’re the healer, you’ve got some amazing things to keep people healed. In other words, your spells and abilities feel like they’ve got impact; better yet, impact that is important to your role. The problem, though, is that it’s not very balanced. The enemies aren’t on an equal footing, resorting only to mobbing you to try to win. The only challenge comes in the form of the end-of-story bosses, who seem to be immune to a lot of non-damaging things you can do.

The stories aren’t that bad, incidentally. Overall you’re dealing with a necromancer who’s raised an undead army and a dracolich and also maybe a boyfriend. However, Cryptic Studios decided to focus on more episodic adventures rather than treating everything else as a side-quest. The beginning mission has you waking up with amnesia on beach with a wreckage of boat you were on, which is surprisingly reminiscent of the of other D&D MMO, but after this tutorial mission, they kind of drop the undead thing and have you dealing with other kinds of self-contained problems. This is a good thing, though, because these shorter stories have beginnings and endings so you don’t feel like you’re wasting your time.neverwinter_screenshot_roguemontage_030813_jpeg1

This is a Perfect World game, so it’s got a lot of the Perfect World features that serves to bring you the Perfect World experience. Most notably there is the Foundry. For those of you who don’t know, Perfect World thought it would be a neat idea to provide quest-building tools to the community at large and allow them to post the results in what is known as the Foundry. Mostly it’s used as an exploit; easily defeatable mobs of enemies for the most loot drops or experience will be at the top of the list. There are some interesting quests, and I recommend looking for the ones with the funniest premise. There’s also the Perfect World timer of events that cycle through public activities in which you team up with random people to go finish challenges for fun and profit. Both of these are mainly designed to keep you from getting bored once the main story stuff is done, but it will also have you patching in between every map.

And now, for the D&D stuff:

For those of you who may not be aware of this… D&D is actually a tabletop dice game with spreadsheets instead of animations. The gameplay is actually 4-7 people controlling one character each on a grid with each person getting 0-2 turns per round. So when yet another game gets made that isn’t a tactical, turn-based, rpg, I have to wonder what the hell the developers were thinking calling it a “Dungeons and Dragons”.

This is not a D&D game; this is an above-average MMO with a D&D skin draped loosely over the mechanics. Woe be it on a developer’s head and actual cater to tabletop fans by making a turn-based strategy MMO in which I and four of my friends, or four random people, go on a D&D adventure with D&D characters and D&D planning with D&D powers. Hell, the sixth main iteration of D&D, ironically titled D&D 4.0, was specifically made to be easily translatable into a game.Dungeons-Dragons-Heroes-of-Neverwinter

And yet the skills aren’t there, they just share the names of skills. The rate of ability use has nothing to do with the actual timing of D&D. But really, what can you expect when they aren’t designing the game field to feel like the video game version of D&D? How can Ray of Frost work like it should if there aren’t squares of movement to restrict? Handhelds remain my best hope, because it’s the portable games that aren’t afraid to delve into other genres besides real-time click-em-ups.

The only positive thing I can say in this regard is that the story lines feel like D&D story lines. You’re given a small quest to investigate something or to harass the local band of thieves and it ends up being more serious than anyone thought. And they actually run you through entire, but short, campaigns with challenging payoffs at the end. It even includes instances which are reminiscent of dungeon diving.CONCEPT_ENVIRONMENT_PE_NeverwinterCrypt03

My final word is that you shouldn’t go into this game expecting to play Dungeons and Dragons. Go in expecting a good MMORPG. It certainly delivers a fun experience but expectations will ruin your day.

Final Score: 8/10

1 Comment

Leave A Reply
  1. loveyou says
    May 22, 2016, 11:25 AM

    it looks so cool

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Facebook Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com