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News & Features Discussion  » [General Article] Neverwinter: Beta Diary #2

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  SBFord

Associate Editor - News Manager

Joined: 6/28/10
Posts: 13985

 
OP  5/08/13 9:19:39 PM#1

After spending the last week adventuring through Neverwinter during the open beta, we've got more to say about Cryptic Studios' magnum opus. This week, we take a look at questing, combat and overall aesthetics. Read on and then tell us about your experiences in the comments.

I must admit that it was refreshing to adventure through the game with a partner. My first beta diary article was completely based on my solo experience. Having now played the game in a party, I find that there’s no going back for me. Neverwinter can be soloed and many do. But it shines its best when fighting alongside others. As with most D&D games, whether computer or tabletop, Neverwinter character classes are meant to complement one another. Where my Guardian was in front tanking, Shelassa’s Rogue could stand back a bit, hurl daggers and then sneak up behind the enemy for a killing blow DPS-style. It was a combat mechanic that suited us very well. 

Read more of Suzie Ford's Neverwinter: Beta Diary #2.

Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom

  dasX82

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/24/06
Posts: 80

5/09/13 9:07:28 AM#2
"Where my Guardian was in front tanking,", Maybe this was you, because tank in this game seems useless but for the last boss. It is one of the biggest issues in this game.
  theniffrig

Novice Member

Joined: 4/18/07
Posts: 352

Ooh, they have the internet on computers now.

5/09/13 9:17:32 AM#3

Will be interested in reading your opinion on mid level & then end game dungeons. I'm on the T2 dungeon content now & some of the fights are very difficult. And traditional MMO tanking is thrown out the window in this game.

I don't think the casual player base will have the time (literally, they really are dungeon crawls at endgame) & the patience for some of the bosses. But anyone who finds it rewarding to defeat a difficult boss encounter will LOVE this game.

  Reizla

Hard Core Member

Joined: 12/09/08
Posts: 3049

MMORPGs are no longer about the mass multi-user anymore *sadly*

5/09/13 9:25:10 AM#4
Originally posted by theniffrig

Will be interested in reading your opinion on mid level & then end game dungeons. I'm on the T2 dungeon content now & some of the fights are very difficult. And traditional MMO tanking is thrown out the window in this game.

I don't think the casual player base will have the time (literally, they really are dungeon crawls at endgame) & the patience for some of the bosses. But anyone who finds it rewarding to defeat a difficult boss encounter will LOVE this game.

Some bosses are hard indeed, even in the lower levels (Lair of the Mad Dragon comes to mind), and I can't wait to get to 'end-game and start playing these dungeons on advanced and epic difficulty!

About tanking, I agree - Neverwinter uses tanks in a different way than other MMORPGs. Tanks are not really used to keep aggro from the main boss, but from the adds so that one DD can kill them while the other DDs focus on the boss. That's something players need to get used to.

Also worth to add that a tank is not always needed. I just finished the Gray Wolf Den with a party that was lacking a tank. We were with 2 healers (me being one of them), 2 control wizards and a great weapon fighter, and honestly, the boss went down pretty fast (around 5-6 minutes I think) with only 3 players that went down (and got revived again as well).

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  Feherlo

Novice Member

Joined: 4/20/13
Posts: 5

5/09/13 9:30:44 AM#5
I think Neverwinter will not be a long lasting MMO game for its players. The playing process is very repetitive and one can each the end content very soon. This two may result in fast leaving of the game. The story basd character progress may be good to attract new players, but not keeping the old ones. For example, I'm sure that I wont go through again on the storyline with an other character. We will see how the Foundry will work in the future, I see that part of the game of the only hope of surviving. 
  Ghavrigg

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/10/12
Posts: 730

5/09/13 9:32:05 AM#6
I find it funny that you pointed out how questing gives the majority of xp. Seems like since 2004 this has been the case with most MMO's released that weren't generic asian turds.
  olepi

Hard Core Member

Joined: 1/15/07
Posts: 1056

5/09/13 9:36:06 AM#7

I keep reading that the game is in "open beta", but are they collecting money?

If so, the game is not in "beta", but is in "production".

------------
RIP City of Heroes. One of my favorite MMO's.

  BillMurphy

Managing Editor

Joined: 7/28/06
Posts: 1768

5/09/13 9:39:23 AM#8
Originally posted by olepi

I keep reading that the game is in "open beta", but are they collecting money?

If so, the game is not in "beta", but is in "production".

It's a marketing decision that PWE has made.  Rest easy though.  If "launch" isn't right around the corner, we'll be reviewing (scoring) the title in a few weeks.

  Reizla

Hard Core Member

Joined: 12/09/08
Posts: 3049

MMORPGs are no longer about the mass multi-user anymore *sadly*

5/09/13 9:42:26 AM#9
Originally posted by Ghavrigg
I find it funny that you pointed out how questing gives the majority of xp. Seems like since 2004 this has been the case with most MMO's released that weren't generic asian turds.

Questing DOES NOT give the majority of the XP in the game - PvP does.

Doing a quest I'm busy on an average of 10 minutes, while a PvP session takes 15 minutes. A Quest gives around 1500-2000 XP including all mobs while PvP gives me already 5000-6000 XP per session (both at level 40-42)

Only downside of  PvP is that you won't get gear aside from one piece as reward if you did your best and the daily AD allowance (which you might use to buy gear from the AH, though I advice against it with the prices there), while you do get tokens for lvl 60 gear.

If one really wants to level up cheap and fast, PvP is the way to go, but you don't get to know the game that well then ;)

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  JudgeUK

Hard Core Member

Joined: 10/15/11
Posts: 732

5/09/13 9:47:56 AM#10

One of the major talking points has been missed out:

Foundry xp.

Some players have been farming the Foundry for days, leveling pretty fast. Now the Foundry xp has been nerfed through the floor leaving other players on the slow quest grind, whilst the Foundry farmers have got to a lot higher level, and even capped.

So now we are faced with the have and have nots. Those who are doing the T1/T2 dungeons, loads of AD and money, compared with the non-farmers who are stuck in the grind.

PWE should have checked the Foundry xp long before open beta (with no character wipe). Now, however they have created this two tier player base.

  spikers14

Novice Member

Joined: 5/01/08
Posts: 350

5/09/13 10:04:34 AM#11
Originally posted by JudgeUK

One of the major talking points has been missed out:

Foundry xp.

Some players have been farming the Foundry for days, leveling pretty fast. Now the Foundry xp has been nerfed through the floor leaving other players on the slow quest grind, whilst the Foundry farmers have got to a lot higher level, and even capped.

So now we are faced with the have and have nots. Those who are doing the T1/T2 dungeons, loads of AD and money, compared with the non-farmers who are stuck in the grind.

PWE should have checked the Foundry xp long before open beta (with no character wipe). Now, however they have created this two tier player base.

This comment is a little extreme.  I did foundry quests today and didn't notice much change in XP...and again...I'm outleveling questing zones due to the XP gain in Foundry. I wouldn't say Foundry XP is nerfed "through the floor". Playing casually since the 30th, I am already lvl 45. Leveling is REALLY fast, no matter what path you take (and I'm a DC with a focus on healing mind you). The margin between the "haves" and "have-nots" will be extremely slim, if not unnoticeable by a regular player. 

edit: spellcheck

  Ghavrigg

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/10/12
Posts: 730

5/09/13 10:07:11 AM#12
Originally posted by Reizla
Originally posted by Ghavrigg
I find it funny that you pointed out how questing gives the majority of xp. Seems like since 2004 this has been the case with most MMO's released that weren't generic asian turds.

Questing DOES NOT give the majority of the XP in the game - PvP does.

Doing a quest I'm busy on an average of 10 minutes, while a PvP session takes 15 minutes. A Quest gives around 1500-2000 XP including all mobs while PvP gives me already 5000-6000 XP per session (both at level 40-42)

Only downside of  PvP is that you won't get gear aside from one piece as reward if you did your best and the daily AD allowance (which you might use to buy gear from the AH, though I advice against it with the prices there), while you do get tokens for lvl 60 gear.

If one really wants to level up cheap and fast, PvP is the way to go, but you don't get to know the game that well then ;)

 

I actually just figured this out. I hit 10, joined Domination PvP, and I got over an entire level for winning.

  JudgeUK

Hard Core Member

Joined: 10/15/11
Posts: 732

5/09/13 10:08:06 AM#13

The review focuses on one or two classes. I have been playing a cleric - and it's a different healing experience in groups.

Single target healing - forget about it. Characters, like Tera, have to be manually targeted. There is no auto-select. That's ok with an open combat vista.

But here we do not have that. 

All players can bring companions into a dungeon, meaning there can be up to 10 characters massing the boss. (Ok it's normally around 6-7 as some players/companions are ranged).

Trying to manually target one player(tank) in the middle of that melee scrum is impossible.

So PWE have attempted to change the Cleric healing characteristics so their damage on the mob gives healing to allies that hit it.

Works to an extent but there is a problem. For some reason, Cleric aggro goes through the roof despite having full Soothe abilities enabled. Meaning that a lot of the time is spent running round trying to escape mobs instead of healing.

A band-aid fix for the aggro issue has been mentioned in the Cleric forum, involving removing and re-quipping all your gear before the dungeon starts - with healers saying it does improve the aggro issue. Go figure. Needs to be looked at.

One other topic - the game desperately needs more chat channels - lfg/general/etc. At present there is just the one main and its like watching a super fast film credit scroll at the end of the movie. Migraine inducing. 

 

  JudgeUK

Hard Core Member

Joined: 10/15/11
Posts: 732

5/09/13 10:13:42 AM#14
Originally posted by spikers14
Originally posted by JudgeUK

One of the major talking points has been missed out:

Foundry xp.

Some players have been farming the Foundry for days, leveling pretty fast. Now the Foundry xp has been nerfed through the floor leaving other players on the slow quest grind, whilst the Foundry farmers have got to a lot higher level, and even capped.

So now we are faced with the have and have nots. Those who are doing the T1/T2 dungeons, loads of AD and money, compared with the non-farmers who are stuck in the grind.

PWE should have checked the Foundry xp long before open beta (with no character wipe). Now, however they have created this two tier player base.

This comment is a little extreme.  I did foundry quests today and didn't notice much change in XP...and again...I'm outleveling questing zones due to the XP gain in Foundry. I wouldn't say Foundry XP is nerfed "through the floor". Playing casually since the 30th, I am already lvl 45. Leveling is REALLY fast, no matter what path you take (and I'm a DC with a focus on healing mind you). The margin between the "haves" and "have-nots" will be extremely slim, if not unnoticeable by a regular player. 

edit: spellcheck

 

I did a couple just before the foundry change when I was at lvl 40, got through two levels hitting stationary Ogres in around 15 mins probably less, together with all the item and money drops. Checked the same after. I'd say it was around 80% reduced checking the xp numbers I'd noted down.

Another guild player calculated it at 85% from his figures.

 
  Tsumoro

Hard Core Member

Joined: 6/30/12
Posts: 342

5/09/13 10:18:28 AM#15
Originally posted by JudgeUK

The review focuses on one or two classes. I have been playing a cleric - and it's a different healing experience in groups.

Single target healing - forget about it. Characters, like Tera, have to be manually targeted. There is no auto-select. That's ok with an open combat vista.

But here we do not have that. 

All players can bring companions into a dungeon, meaning there can be up to 10 characters massing the boss. (Ok it's normally around 6-7 as some players/companions are ranged).

Trying to manually target one player(tank) in the middle of that melee scrum is impossible.

So PWE have attempted to change the Cleric healing characteristics so their damage on the mob gives healing to allies that hit it.

Works to an extent but there is a problem. For some reason, Cleric aggro goes through the roof despite having full Soothe abilities enabled. Meaning that a lot of the time is spent running round trying to escape mobs instead of healing.

A band-aid fix for the aggro issue has been mentioned in the Cleric forum, involving removing and re-quipping all your gear before the dungeon starts - with healers saying it does improve the aggro issue. Go figure. Needs to be looked at.

One other topic - the game desperately needs more chat channels - lfg/general/etc. At present there is just the one main and its like watching a super fast film credit scroll at the end of the movie. Migraine inducing. 

 

Agree with everything you said. I love this game, really having a blast. But the devout cleric gets a rough deal in dungeons. How could this be addressed is that people start acting a little more responsible for themselves. Such as using their own potions when dangerously low which is what I have to do as my healing is spent on others! The other thing is, if they reach below 50% run to the healer!!! The divine light at-will tops people off in no time but it's hard to aim the beam if the scrum in the middle is out of hand.

And yes, more chat windows. There needs to be a trade and a LFG based one. Can barely see what people type some times!

  Unshra

Novice Member

Joined: 6/23/05
Posts: 382

5/09/13 10:25:13 AM#16
Originally posted by olepi

I keep reading that the game is in "open beta", but are they collecting money?

If so, the game is not in "beta", but is in "production".

Companies like to call it a "soft launch" basically it allows them to launch the game and deal with all the typical release day bugs so that when it "officially" releases they have a better chance of having a great launch and hey they get paid for it. It's mostly a PR thing and is rather typical for "free two play" titles as they can also uses these soft launches to start raking in the money early on by opening up the cash shops while they work through the beta bugs and if anything goes wrong well hell "it beta, what do you expect."

 

Gamer's buy into it because from their perspective their beta character is not going to be wiped so no sense of a forced re-roll before released.

 


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  winter

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/08/03
Posts: 2268

5/09/13 10:36:20 AM#17
Originally posted by JudgeUK
Originally posted by spikers14
Originally posted by JudgeUK

One of the major talking points has been missed out:

Foundry xp.

Some players have been farming the Foundry for days, leveling pretty fast. Now the Foundry xp has been nerfed through the floor leaving other players on the slow quest grind, whilst the Foundry farmers have got to a lot higher level, and even capped.

So now we are faced with the have and have nots. Those who are doing the T1/T2 dungeons, loads of AD and money, compared with the non-farmers who are stuck in the grind.

PWE should have checked the Foundry xp long before open beta (with no character wipe). Now, however they have created this two tier player base.

This comment is a little extreme.  I did foundry quests today and didn't notice much change in XP...and again...I'm outleveling questing zones due to the XP gain in Foundry. I wouldn't say Foundry XP is nerfed "through the floor". Playing casually since the 30th, I am already lvl 45. Leveling is REALLY fast, no matter what path you take (and I'm a DC with a focus on healing mind you). The margin between the "haves" and "have-nots" will be extremely slim, if not unnoticeable by a regular player. 

edit: spellcheck

 

I did a couple just before the foundry change when I was at lvl 40, got through two levels hitting stationary Ogres in around 15 mins probably less, together with all the item and money drops. Checked the same after. I'd say it was around 80% reduced checking the xp numbers I'd noted down.

Another guild player calculated it at 85% from his figures.

 

  Hummm, you got 2 lvls (from 40 to 42?) doing a 15 mins foundry quests where stationary ogres stood around and let you beat on them? Wouldn't you say thats something that needed to be nerfed about 85%.

 

  Understandably many players seek the fastest and easiest way to level even if it is the most bland and mind numbingly boring way. (repeat exploit quest till eyes bleed.)  Those same players will make it to max level in record time quit and complain how boring the game was because of the way they chose to play it. Its Cryptics fault in of course if they allow it to happen.

  Gravarg

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 8/24/06
Posts: 3203

5/09/13 10:39:40 AM#18
Originally posted by JudgeUK

The review focuses on one or two classes. I have been playing a cleric - and it's a different healing experience in groups.

Single target healing - forget about it. Characters, like Tera, have to be manually targeted. There is no auto-select. That's ok with an open combat vista.

But here we do not have that. 

All players can bring companions into a dungeon, meaning there can be up to 10 characters massing the boss. (Ok it's normally around 6-7 as some players/companions are ranged).

Trying to manually target one player(tank) in the middle of that melee scrum is impossible.

So PWE have attempted to change the Cleric healing characteristics so their damage on the mob gives healing to allies that hit it.

Works to an extent but there is a problem. For some reason, Cleric aggro goes through the roof despite having full Soothe abilities enabled. Meaning that a lot of the time is spent running round trying to escape mobs instead of healing.

A band-aid fix for the aggro issue has been mentioned in the Cleric forum, involving removing and re-quipping all your gear before the dungeon starts - with healers saying it does improve the aggro issue. Go figure. Needs to be looked at.

One other topic - the game desperately needs more chat channels - lfg/general/etc. At present there is just the one main and its like watching a super fast film credit scroll at the end of the movie. Migraine inducing. 

 

It takes some getting used to with Cleric.  One thing my friends and I have come up with is a simple rule.  If you want a good big heal for yourself, move away from the boss.  If a melee character is moving away from the boss, I'll heal them within a second, or next cooldown refresh hehe.

 
Also it's about positioning.  If you're not tanking you should be behind or beside the boss.  In most fights I stand at like a 30-45 degree angle behind the tank.  So I always have a clear shot at the tank, even when he has to move away from knockdowns.  It takes a team effort. That's why I don't like PUGs in this game, and I'm almost always in a full group of friends/guildmates.  As Suzie said, it's alot more fun with a group...which almost all mmos are :)
  birdycephon

Novice Member

Joined: 8/08/09
Posts: 1327

Not Safe For Woona (NSFW)

5/09/13 10:48:14 AM#19
One thing I hate, is trying to pay attention to the quest text only to get attacked by mobs in the middle. Happened twice durring the short time I was playing.
  elocke

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 6/15/04
Posts: 4113

5/09/13 10:48:27 AM#20

I've been having a blast on my Control Wizard.  The "on rails" aspect of the game is softened I think by the fact that it is free to play.  If this required a sub I'd be a bit miffed, but I can just log in and follow the rails for awhile and have fun without worrying about payments and such. 

I'm only level 24 but just combat alone is making me want to play over other games right now.  I like the diversity in choosing which skills best suit my play style and and where to put feat points and power points.  It feels fairly flexible although I'm dreading the respec cost when I hit cap as I hear it's based on Zen or Astral Diamonds instead of in game gold.  Not a good thing, that.

Love the sound design, too.  Certain spells, especially the dailies really pack that visceral punch many other games lack.  My only negative comment on the sound would be the over usage of what seems to be the exact same music I've heard in Star Trek Online and Champions Online.  More music diversity would be great.

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