A thoughtful and personal exploration of games

A Return to Neverwinter


It’s been some time since I could wander the streets and alleys of Neverwinter. It’s not as it once was though. The scenery is… different. I’m getting used to the Moonstone Mask floating in the air and my old stomping grounds being overrun by everything from Wererats to Orcs of the Many-Arrows tribe.

I will say one thing though: the strife in the city never changes.

My favorite character thus far is my level 41 Dwarven Devoted Cleric, Sidian Stormhammer. I think I got him to level 30 before I even made another character. Right now I’m taking a much deserved break from him since once I got to a certain point, fighting enemies just became a bit of a drag. I might have to change up some skills. I started playing a Guardian Fighter last night and I hit 15 before I realized it, so I must be doing something right.

The profession system is a lot of fun. I especially enjoy how I can keep up on my stuff by logging into the Neverwinter Gateway. I have three characters with professions to work with and I’ve started checking the gateway each morning right after waking up. Super fun and all around a wonderful addition to the game. It’s a little buggy here and there, but I can make it work.

The random name generator for characters is amazing. Give it a few clicks the next time you make a character and you’ll see what I mean. My Tiefling Guardian Fighter from last night? Orianna Balorfist. So. Cool. My Half-Orc Trickster Rogue? Irienys. My Half-Orc Great Weapon Fighter? Zanros. My Human Control Wizard? Thom Urthadar. Great names, all of them.

I’ve had few issues with the game. Seeing as my computer is thoroughly venerable compared to today’s equipment, I suffer quite a bit of lag when there’s too many people on screen. Fortunately, Cryptic gave me plenty of video options to turn to low or completely off. During a dungeon last night (5 man mission), I had to reduce the rendering quality just so I wouldn’t lag as much in a fight. Every pixel just kind of blurred. It was weird, but very playable. Also, whenever I’m in the Protector’s Enclave, it’s only a matter of time before my computer goes, “hang on, don’t move ever while I try to draw everything around you that’s moving so fast”. Yeah, pushing my way through town is like slogging through a mud pit sometimes.

The game isn’t entirely pristine, but the bugs are pretty few and far between. I found out yesterday dying for the first time as a level 39 Cleric that injuries won’t heal themselves at a campfire like they’re supposed to (according to the help menu). Yup, filed that bug: NOT WORKING AS INTENDED.

Neverwinter is currently holding my attention pretty well in my post-Star Wars: The Old Republic haze. At least it will until Star Trek Online drops the Romulan content on the 21st. Also, I’m going to have to take another day sometime soon to record more XCOM Enemy Unknown footage for my current Let’s Play.

Until next time!

– Elorfin

P.S. “You must gather your party before venturing forth.” – The message in Neverwinter when you’re waiting for your group before entering an instance. It’s also what the narrator used to say in Baldur’s Gate when you were attempting to leave a zone without some members of your group close enough. I forever read it like that narrator is saying it.

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7 responses

  1. How long has Neverwinter been out? I thought it had a soft launch only recently — level 41 sounds pretty high! Then again, I play games at a snail’s pace (and therefore have no sense of how long it “really” takes to do things), and I’ve not been following Neverwinter that much. In fact, all I know about it is that STO’s server stability has recently gotten wonky.

    As a big fan of XCOM Enemy Unknown, I’d love to see some of your thoughts and footage. On the STO front, I’ve been toying around with the Duty Officers, but I’m really waiting for the 21st to “get back into it.” The Klingons just don’t do much for me, and I’m undecided about how to proceed with my Federation characters; a Romulan seems the best way to get out of this impasse.

    May 6, 2013 at 1:38 PM

    • Neverwinter’s been in “open beta” since April 30th, so a week now. I played one character almost exclusively up to yesterday and that’s how I did it.

      If you’d like to see my gameplay videos, I have a link to my YouTube channel on the right side of my blog. I’m currently uploading my XCOM playthrough and it’s up to episode 4.

      May 6, 2013 at 1:45 PM

      • Awesome! I’ll check it out!

        May 6, 2013 at 1:50 PM

      • Oh man, you’ve got a cool voice.

        I completely loved the complete silence and and mouse over hesitation that went with your choice of Iron Man. “Let’s hope I don’t get someone killed, do-do-doo” is definitely the theme song of this game. And dang, your one survivor was the luckiest guy ever!

        The hardest lesson for me to learn was that “partial cover” really means “this will be your team member’s tomb stone.” If I have to use partial cover, I usually bunker down rather than overwatch. This makes my games super slow and boring, but hey, I stay alive (and I don’t waste ammo on reduced accuracy shots).

        May 7, 2013 at 1:57 AM

      • Yeah, this game is currently the fastest I’ve ever played. I’m usually not fond of having members of my team even getting injured and spending days in medical and I’ll reload and shift people over and over again to ensure no one ever gets hurt. I can play a game through with the same 6 people I started with.

        Oh, yeah, the Iron Man color scheme. LOL And her name is Hulk. 😛

        I never use hunker down. I dunno, maybe I’ll make use of it later, but at least for the first 15 videos, I never needed it.

        May 7, 2013 at 8:17 AM

      • One of the ways that the game increases the difficulty is by making enemy criticals far more likely. Hunkering down not only doubles your defense rating, but it also makes your character immune to crits (doesn’t apply to flanking, I’m pretty certain). Hunkering down cut down my on the “sudden and unexpected violent death” syndrome that haunted pretty much all of my early playthroughs. The downside is that you can’t see for more than a few squares around your character, but that’s actually okay, a lot of the time — the enemy will often break cover to try and get a better shot at you, and so by the time you can see them again, they’re standing out in the open for everyone to kill.

        All of this said, I definitely don’t know much about the game, and am in no way claiming you’re playing the game wrong. I’m glad to hear that overwatch is working out for you! I’ve not watched all of your videos — how far have you made it through in this playthrough? And have you considered getting the Slingshot DLC?

        May 7, 2013 at 10:02 AM

      • I always figured that it’s just easier to kill the enemies as soon as they show up than letting them get off free shots on my cowering soldiers. 😛 No worries. There’s no one way to play XCOM and that’s the brilliant thing about it.

        I just uploaded the fifth video today and I think it contains the first mission of the Slingshot DLC, so you can check that out. I managed to finish the whole Slingshot DLC by the time I hit video #15. I’m uploading one episode a day.

        May 7, 2013 at 10:53 AM

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