Average User Score: 5.3Dec 25, 2013I want to love it. I really do... But something holds me back from giving it a higher score.
Let me elaborate. I've been a huge fan of theI want to love it. I really do... But something holds me back from giving it a higher score.
Let me elaborate. I've been a huge fan of the Neverwinter series from the start, and when I heard it was going to be an MMO, I got excited. Then I heard it was free. I was ecstatic. Then I played it. Now it feels like something's missing on a very basic level, and I can't help but be a little disappointed.
1) For starters, the controls are tight and very fluid for an MMO. The fact that the screen moves with the mouse without holding a mouse button down is revolutionary and Cryptic did a great job getting that part right. All default mappings are close to movement keys and everything just works. The game plays almost like a third person shooter would, complete with a reticule and everything. The bad thing is that it's TOO simple. There are a limited number of attacks you can employ because of the setup and the complexity of your average MMO's combat exceeds NW's because of this.
2) NW remains somewhat true to the D&D spirit of character creation and play. There are a wide variety of races to choose from (although most of those you can find in a Tolkien book and I would love to see more exotic races like the Catfolk). In fact, the choices for playable races far exceeds that of games like The Old Republic MMO and all are available for free, which is very nice. Also, you can create a unique bio and back story for your character which, sadly, means absolutely nothing as every character starts out in the exact same area and you are just left with your imagination as to how you got there in the first place. Overall it's on its way to becoming truly great in terms of customization, but just misses the mark as most build options are eerily similar and your choices seem to have little if any- weight on the story.
3) Perhaps the worst pitfall is that Neverwinter follows Cryptic's predecessors, in that there is a lack of content for higher level players compared to games like WoW. Even when you aren't at a high level, each portion of the game feels sectioned off from most other players, or "instanced", and the concept of a "massively-multiplayer-online game" becomes pretty ironic. Other than leveling, there really isn't anything else you can do and it can be quite lonely at the top. Now they did introduce a level creation system that is pretty neat but don't expect it to hold your interest for long as it's quite limited. Even a neat sandbox system isn't enough to keep me playing this game.
4) This game is free. That is a good thing and a bad thing. It's bad because you know that somewhere down the line, the developers are going to need to find a way to monetize. They do this through the a shop where you pay real money to do things like respec your character, get higher level gear you know, things you already expect of MMO's for free. The good thing is you can play almost everything the game has to offer without any real money, but you will always feel disadvantaged compared to those that do spend Take it for what you will. IMHO I would rather drop $60 for a game than have to piecemeal my way through these gimmicks. In fact, I think that overall quality suffers from a F2P model more often than not as people who have to pay expect more of the game going into it.
Is Neverwinter the greatest MMO since WoW? Meh... Probably not. Certainly not by the standards I hold the Neverwinter series up to. Is it worth a play? Definitely. It has a lot going for it all things considered and with some improvement (especially regarding exploration instead of on-the-rails action) it could really be a contender against some paid MMOs. If Cryptic/Perfect World can push out some radical updates that addresses some of these issues, then you're looking at a worthwhile experience. Until then, it's nothing compared to other standby MMOs.… Expand