Neverwinter Preview: Crafting and Skills Impressions from the Last Closed Beta Weekend

| 24 Apr 2013 22:00

As the end of the weekend rolled around, I spent some time exploring the high-level character options, which includes heroic feats and access to a Paragon Path. Heroic feats are unlocked at level 30, and allow for specialization into one of three areas of the class. At the higher levels, these feats included things like group buffs, unique attacks, and a special ability to cap each tree. Each of the final abilities on the trees seems to be somewhat of a game-changer, though not all of the abilities were implemented during the beta weekend. Paragon Paths are also unlocked at level 30, and while it seems like there will eventually be a choice in the path taken, during the beta weekend I could only choose the Master Infiltrator tree. Paragon Paths unlock a new set of skills and passive abilities that will critically influence the play style of each class, giving birth to a wide range of builds and options for character customization. While of course min-maxers will always find the ‘optimal build', Neverwinter definitely seems to be committed to giving players the tools to make the character they're most interested in, while maintaining viability.

Although Neverwinter has not even launched yet, Cryptic is clearly looking ahead to address high level content and end game material for players who have reached the level cap. Cryptic representatives have already let us know that there are currently no plans for raid groups in Neverwinter, and that all PvE content at max level will be conquerable with only a five-person party. While for some this may be a disappointment, I definitely see the advantages of their choice, making it simple to put together an adventuring group, and maintaining the intimate feel of going dungeon crawling. In an interview with Zeke Sparks, the lead designer for Neverwinter, it was revealed that Cryptic is also going to include a massive 20v20 PvP zone for max level players, set in the Dwarven ruin of Gauntlgrym. Cryptic also included a few hints towards their direction for end-game with purchasable in game items, such as high-level elixirs, which seem very reminiscent of World of Warcraft flasks. Cryptic has also revealed that they are working on distinctive end-game armor, and they have even shown a few pieces of concept art to get the loot whore in all of us just a little riled up. There are also vendors in the trade district of Neverwinter who will exchange epic, high-level armor and weapons for tokens, presumably collected from bosses in high level dungeons.

categories: 3d, fantasy

It's been over century since the Spellplague forever changed The Forgotten Realms. Now, explore the city that's been at the center of a thousand adventures: Neverwinter. Adapted from the real Dungeons and Dragon's ruleset, Neverwinter will feature action-oriented combat and storytelling unlike any other MMO. Take the world in your hands with the Foundry toolset and make your own tales. Make your mark in this legendary world.

When I logged out Sunday night, I did so with a heavy heart and a lot of excitement for the upcoming open beta release. Neverwinter promises to be a major contender in the MMORPG market for this year, and with good cause. Cryptic has done an amazing job at creating a compelling and enjoyable game experience that remains fresh and engaging for every encounter. Neverwinter will be released to the public in open beta beginning April 30th, though founders will be able to access the game as early as tomorrow. For players who are looking for a guild or community to take part in, WarCry will be having an active part in the Neverwinter community. Feel free to check out our website, or our Facebook page.

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