Quantcast
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG - Destructoid

DestructoidJapanatorTomopopFlixist



Neverwinter  




D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG

4:00 PM on 02.07.2013

Impressions of the Neverwinter beta


There are a lot of massively-multiplayer online games on the market today, many of which are still very similar to World of Warcraft. While the graphics, setting, and characters may change, the core gameplay often feels the same. Hotkeys and a screen full of action bars have become the normal way to play MMOs, but there are a few games like TERA that have tried to break away and bring more action into the mix. TERA did a pretty good job with the action, but the setting and quest design was too generic and most people found it to be lackluster.

Cryptic is stepping into the "action-MMO" space with Neverwinter, which is somewhat of a follow-up to the classic Neverwinter Nights series. Based on the popular Forgotten Realms setting from Dungeons & Dragons and the Fourth Edition ruleset, this has the potential to be an interesting free-to-play title. I had the chance to jump into an early beta event with the developers and run a quick raid, and from what I have seen so far, this one might be able to deliver some good times.


Neverwinter  (PC)
Developer: Cryptic Studios
Publisher: Perfect World Entertainment
Releases: Early 2013

The biggest thing that makes Neverwinter stand out from other MMOs is its tiny abilities bar on the bottom of the screen. It works a lot like the abilities system from a typical action-RPG game and it's easily usable with keys like Q, E, and R. You'll only have to reach up to 1 and 2 to use your daily powers, which won't be too often. A total of eleven abilities can be hot-keyed, and that includes the mouse buttons.

The abilities you decide to map can be swapped out at just about any time, not unlike, say, Diablo III. The combat is almost identical to a hack-n-slash role-playing game. Imagine if Diablo III and EverQuest had a baby: combat works by clicking a lot while pointing at monsters and dodging out of the way of their attacks. It isn't anything new, but it's a nice point of differentiation for an MMO. It's very responsive and I noticed only minimal impact from lag -- even in this early beta version.

The foundry system of player-created content from Cryptic's other games like Star Trek Online will be making its way into Neverwinter. Players will be able to make their own quests and they are easily accessed from a bulletin board in-game. Any user-created content can be rated so you don't have to worry about wading through piles of garbage to find anything worthwhile. It won't cost anything to access the Foundry, but it will have to be unlocked in the game somehow. Cryptic will have more details on this later.

At launch, there will be five classes that are based on Fourth Edition D&D class archetypes: Trickster Rogue, Great Weapon Fighter, Guardian Fighter, Control Wizard, and Devoted Cleric. There are plans to add more classes after release, and there's no word yet on if any of these will cost money to unlock. The developers did say that they don't want to lock content out from anyone, but things like unique races might be offered to premium players.

I'm sure some of you are wondering what makes this different from Dungeons & Dragons Online. Well, it plays a lot differently for one thing. DDO is a classically-structured MMO that is strongly based on the 3.5 edition of D&D's rules, which is a long way of saying that it's slower paced and a lot like EverQuest and World of Warcraft.

Neverwinter is based on new rules for D&D and it's built as an action game. Plus it's based on the more well-known Forgotten Realms as opposed to the Eberron setting and is being designed as a free-to-play game from the ground up. I like DDO, but I can see some people switching over to Neverwinter because it has more engaging combat. Of course, they are both free, so no one really has to choose one over the other. 

I've enjoyed what I've played so far and am looking forward to diving into the beta over the coming weeks. The MMO space needs some diversity in what's available, and while Neverwinter doesn't stray too far from the familiar questing formula, it does offer entertaining combat, and having fun -- if still familiar -- gameplay is sometimes all it takes to make a good game.

D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo
D&D MMO Neverwinter plays like a good action-RPG photo







Comments not appearing? Anti-virus apps like Avast or some browser extensions can cause this.
Easy fix: Add   [*].disqus.com   to your software's white list. Tada! Happy comments time again.

Did you know? You can now get daily or weekly email notifications when humans reply to your comments.






timeline following:
Neverwinter



1:00 PM on 07.13.2013
Everything you need to know about Neverwinter

There sure are a lot of free-to-play MMORPGs out there vying for everyone's attention these days. Even MMOs that begin with a subscription-based model tend to eventually offer some free-to-play version down the line. It's def...more



9:30 PM on 06.06.2013
Neverwinter out on June 20, first expansion revealed

You should go play Neverwinter -- it's awesome. Right now it's in open beta, but on June 20 it will be officially released. Part of this release includes a new end-game area that will combine "PvE, PvP and dungeon delving int...more



4:00 AM on 04.05.2013
Neverwinter goes into open beta on April 30

Apparently a lot of you like Neverwinter, the upcoming free-to-play MMORPG. Seriously, we ran out of closed beta codes for the game within minutes! Well for those of you who missed the special closed beta weekend events, you...more



3:30 PM on 03.07.2013
Here are 2,000 beta codes for the D&D MMO Neverwinter!

[Update 2: We're giving away five more on Twitter this Saturday, March 9. After that, you'll have to wait for Beta Weekend 3!] [Update: They're gone! Boy, that was fast. Follow us on Twitter; we might get more!] Destructoid h...more



8:00 PM on 02.06.2013
Neverwinter MMO beta weekend begins Friday

This weekend, beginning February 8, the free-to-play Neverwinter MMO will be opening its doors to select beta testers and will run until the February 10. You can sign up for a chance to get in on the official website, o...more



2:00 AM on 09.05.2012
Neverwinter MMO to feature user content

This past June at E3, I was privy to the wonderful treat that is Perfect World's upcoming Neverwinter MMO, a vast free-to-play title with exquisite artwork and adrenaline-pumping combat animations that has since left me recon...more



4:40 PM on 06.07.2012
E3: Checking in with the Neverwinter MMO

I'm not what you call an MMO fan; in fact, it is the only genre I refuse to play. Imagine my delight at being handed an assignment for Perfect World's MMO lineup, including Neverwinter. Nonetheless, it's my job to give things...more



8:30 PM on 10.06.2011
Neverwinter co-op RPG becomes Neverwinter MMO

If you have a fabulous memory you may recall that way back in 2009, there was a rumor floating around that Cryptic Studios might be handling a Neverwinter Nights MMO. You may also remember that there was a cooperative RP...more



4:10 PM on 06.08.2011
E3: Neverwinter defrosts a trailer and some details

Cryptic Studios (City of Heroes, Champions Online, Star Trek Online) has revealed some slivers of information and a trailer for the upcoming multiplayer game Neverwinter. Set in the well-known city in the Forgotten Realms uni...more




Role-Playing Games

4:30 PM on 04.18.2014
Review in Progress: Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn (PS4)

Last year close to its launch, we reviewed Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn -- so what's with the retread, you ask? Well, that was before we implemented our Reviews in Progress program, which was designed to cover games...more



4:00 PM on 04.18.2014
The Darkest Dungeon gods were kind to me

Hot off its huge Kickstarter success, Darkest Dungeon is already in a playable-enough state to have a demo at PAX East 2014. Although the demo was only a short snippet of what's to come, it was easy to get a sense of the them...more



2:30 PM on 04.18.2014
Fairy Fencer F and Disgaea 4 Vita dated for the west

Earlier today, Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair got a release date for North American Vitas: September 2. I still need to play the first. Anyway, more Japanese games have western release dates. Compile Heart's RPG Fairy Fencer ...more



View all Role-Playing Games






Back to Top




All content is yours to recycle through our Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing requiring attribution. Our communities are obsessed with videoGames, movies, anime, and toys.

Living the dream since March 16, 2006

Advertising on destructoid is available: Please contact them to learn more