I hadn’t planned on playing Neverwinter, mainly because I expected it to look and feel dated and in part because I am full up to -here- with fantasy MMOs. Why would we need yet another one with so many good ones out there? That said, everyone who was playing it (which is most of the gamers that I follow) seemed to be really enjoying it, so I downloaded it. What can I say? I’m a sheep. :)
The graphics weren’t great, as expected from something based on Dungeons & Dragons, but they weren’t so horrible that I couldn’t play. I have never been able to play MMOs such as EQ/EQII, Vanguard, etc., because of the dated look and feel; I’m an eye-candy whore for games such as Guild Wars 2. The fact that I haven’t taken any screenshots to accompany this post should tell you something.
I hated the “action combat” system initially and then got used to it. I rolled a cleric, though, and healing when you can’t actually target anything is miserable. I’m hoping for more aoe-based heals as she levels, because trying to land a single-target heal in a crowd of mobs and companions and players who don’t need healing is horrible – there is always something running between you and the person in low health as you’re trying to land a needed heal.
I have to admit, though…I am having a lot of fun. It’s free, which is a good thing, and the cash shop (although very expensive) hasn’t been necessary yet. I did consider a Founder’s Pack and then decided against it when I realised that Cryptic is one of those companies that charge EU players more than US players. How difficult can it be to keep relative pricing fair for different groups of players? I haven’t bothered working it out properly, but I would guess that EU players are paying something like a third more than US ones. I don’t believe in supporting companies that do this. How will they learn if we reward them for poor business practices? :D
As far as classes go, Cleric is great if you normally play with a partner or in a group. It’s a bit slower if you only solo. Trickster Rogue, especially if you can afford a cleric companion fairly early on, is an overpowered blast which I fully expect to be nerfed at some point. Try it before they do, as being a spinning whirlwind of dual-daggered death is tons of fun. Phil was really enjoying the Control Wizard, and with only two character slots I haven’t had the chance to try any of the other classes.
The Foundry (player-created content) is pretty amazing for the most part, even though it has received a recent xp/drop nerf due to exploiters. This is why we can’t have nice things, people. I’m looking forward to delving into it and creating some of my own content.
Overall, I’d recommend it highly as a second game, or main game for a casual player. For me it’s not worth dropping tons of money into, but I’ve very much enjoyed the time that I’ve spent so far.