Perfect World Entertainment and Cryptic Studio yestrday released the ninth expansion for their hugely successful MMORPG, Neverwinter on Xbox One. It’s been available to PC players for a few weeks now and it’s finally made it for console players. Titled The Maze Engine, it continues on from where the previous expansion, Underdark, left off.
Even though your adventuring spirit quelled the efforts of Demogorgon, new threats have risen from the depths. The Horned King Baphomet has taken control of The Maze Engine. This powerful reality altering artifact can give Baphomet the capability to ensnare the Sword Coast.
The Maze Engine will also see the return of Castle Never. This has been captured and overrun by the Prince of Undeath, Orcus. He has used his powers to reanimate slain heroes of the Keep’s past and has raised an army of the undead.
The latest expansion has also brought new gameplay updates, including the return of four leveling dungeons and the previously mentioned Castle Never. The fortress has been upgraded to an epic dungeon, just to give you something else to worry about. All returning dungeons have been upgraded with fresh visuals and brand new content. Cloak Tower, Pirate King’s Retreat, The Frozen Heart and Caverns of Karrundax have all made a welcome return .
The Maze Engine also introduces a new Mounts System. This allows players to upgrade and customise their mounts and how they are stored. You can even use abilities from other mounts to augment the powers of your favourite. Also included are an improved queue system and of course, the all-new campaign.
To celebrate this release, we have teamed up with Perfect World Entertainment to give away 50 Boar Mounts for The Maze Engine. Keep an eye on our Twitter and Facebook accounts in the coming day or so for more details and your chance to mount up.
Neverwinter: The Maze Engine is available now and free-to-play for all Xbox Live Gold members.
It’s almost hard to believe that we are heading towards the ninth DLC expansion for Perfect World Entertainment’s Neverwinter. The free-to-play MMORP has been a real hit with gamers across multiple formats. In the last expansion, Neverwinter: Underdark, demons were starting to escape from the Abyss and the next expansion, The Maze Engine, continues that storyline.
Coming firstly to PC in March, Neverwinter: The Maze Engine will also be hitting us lucky folk on Xbox One at a later date.
What can we expect to find in this next expansion? How about The Horned King Baphomet and the Prince of the Undead, Orcus? Down in the depths of the Underdark, Baphomet and his demons guard The Maze Engine, a magical mechanical device that can warp the fabric of reality. Orcus has taken control of Castle Never and has reanimated defeated enemies of the past.
Your task will be to eliminate these new threats by teaming up with Drizzt Do’Urden, Minsc, Bruenor Battlehammer, Regis and many more of the classic D&D characters.
Have a look at the challenge issued below in the official announcement trailer and look out for further updates, hopefully including an Xbox ONe release date, soon.
It’s hard to believe that Perfect World’s Neverwinter is now technically heading to it’s eighth expansion. Released on PC back in November last year, Neverwinter: Underdark has been slated for a 9th of February release on Xbox One.
Portions of this expansion have been penned by acclaimed author, R.A Salvatore, a New York Times best seller. Underdark will see you fighting alongside Drizz’t Do’Urden in a quest that will have you face-off against the Prince of Demons, Dermogorgon himself, in a 10-player battle royale.
This expansion will also include two all-new end-game skirmishes as well as a host of new content, such as the hub-zone of Mantol-Derith. The “Dwarven King” questline is the part that Salvatore has had his hand in.
Neverwinter has fast become the the Xbox One’s largest free-to-play title and this new free expansion firmly reinforces that.
Neverwinter: Underdark releases on Xbox One of the 9th of February and is free to play with your Gold subscription.
Neverwinter is currently massive. There’s a plethora of things to do and quests to fulfill. Well, it’s about to get even bigger. The seventh expansion for the free-to-play MMORPG will hit the Xbox One in November and it promises to keep you entertained.
You will get the opportunity to join other guild members to reclaim a derelict stronghold from the wild and rebuild it into a fortified castle on Neverwinter’s largest map.
This should really fire up those nostalgic juices, eager for the feeling of traditional wargaming from the early Dungeons and Dragons. Stronghold will empower guilds to battle the surrounding environment for resources to customise and optimise their newly acquired home against threats. Build and fortify structures like archer towers to fend off attackers, while building siege weapons to increase your ability to wage war against enemy guilds in the all new Siege PVP game mode, also available at launch.
Strongholds Siege is fought on battlegrounds created by combining two strongholds maps. thus doubling the scale and making it the largest map ever built. This would be able to support large-scale 20-vs-20, MOBA-like combat. The objective of this mode is to siege and destroy the enemy’s guild hall. Once the keep has been secured, guilds work to solidify their foothold along the ranges of the Sword Coast.
Neverwinter: Strongholds will be ready for siege-attacks from the 3rd of November, and here’s a taster of the action.
Neverwinter. It’s an enigma. The game is simply massive and has a dedicated and loyal fanbase. Cryptic Studios have announced a treat for all the fans of the game on Xbox One.
Released today and called Neverwinter: Elemental Evil, this will bring together content from four expansions, all in one update. This will include content from the following expansions, Elemental Evil, Fury of the Feywild, Shadowmantle and Curse of Icewind Dale all previously released on PC.
What do you get for your free update?
An increase in your level cap to 70
Eight new adventure zones
A new playable class of Oathbound Paladin
The Dread Ring
Malabog’s Castle, Valindra’s Tower and Kessell’s Retreat
Minsc and Boo join adventurers in the fight against the Cults of Elemental Evil
Increase in companion quality cap from epic to legendary
Maximum level increase for all professions
Achievements have been fixed
Make no mistake, this is a massive update and will include any post-update fix that has been applied to the PC expansion version too.
Rob Overmeyer, executive producer of Neverwinter is excited to bring this to Xbox One,
We’re thrilled to bring Elemental Evil to Neverwinter’s Xbox One community of over 2 million players. With six expansions’ worth of free contents released since launch, our team continues to support Neverwinter and its players with all new locations along and outside of The Sword Coast filled with challenging dungeons to crawl and wicked monsters to battle. We’re excited to continue our support with the Strongholds expansion in 2015.
No doubt, if you’ve already fired up Neverwinter, there’s a good chance that you’ve already got, or are downloading this update. Let us know what you think below and while you’re waiting for the download to finish, have a sneaky look at the Elemental Evil release trailer.
Neverwinter: Strongholds – the seventh expansion for the action MMORPG set in the Dungeons & Dragons’ Forgotten Realms universe from Wizards of the Coast is due for release.
Strongholds introduces the largest playable map released for Neverwinter and focuses on players banding together to take back a stronghold from the wild. The initial release will focus on player-versus-environment gameplay in order to allow guilds the opportunity to build their strongholds before taking the fight to other players when large scale player-versus-player content launches.
Reminiscent of early Dungeons & Dragons gameplay, Neverwinter: Strongholds empowers guilds to reclaim a keep and its surrounding wilderness areas from monsters. As the lands are cleared, guilds will build defenses both in and around their strongholds using structures like archer towers to fend off attackers, while building siege structures to increase their ability to wage war against enemy guilds. Once the keep has been secured, guilds will work to solidify their foothold along the ranges of the Sword Coast.
Neverwinter : Strongholds is due for PC launch on August 11th with an Xbox One release to follow shortly thereafter.
Later on the today during the 7AM PDT maintenance window (3PM GMT), Perfect World Entertainment & Cryptic Studios have announced that Neverwinter: Rise of Tiamat will be available on Xbox One. The content update will be released alongside an update that aim to improve player experience across the board. These include an onscreen mini-map, performance upgrades, adjustments to queuing and more.
Neverwinter players may now explore the all-new Well of Dragons adventure zone while battling the harbingers of Tiamat, queen of the dragons, in the first of five free expansions Xbox One players can expect in 2015 at no additional cost.
Neverwinter: Rise of Tiamat follows the events of Neverwinter: Tyranny of Dragons campaign and the recent Siege of Neverwinter event. Along with new quests and heroic encounters on the path to completing the final chapters of the Tyranny of Dragons campaign, players can anticipate the upcoming 25-player battle with five-headed draconic goddess Tiamat.
With Neverwinter being one of the first MMORPGs to come to the Xbox One, we wanted to ensure that our game lives up to the idea of a living world. Rise of Tiamat is just the beginning of our continued support for our game on consoles as we look to deliver more dungeons, dragons and game optimizations that our players want.
said Rob Overmeyer, executive producer of Neverwinter. You can read our full interview with Rob Overmeyer here.
We were recently invited to interview Rob Overmeyer, Executive Producer on Neverwinter for Xbox One. If you haven’t rolled your character and got stuck into Neverwinter yet, you can read our huge three-part review here: Part 1, Part 2 and finally Part 3.
This is Xbox (TiX): When you aren’t busy working, and you are enjoying free time playing Neverwinter yourself, what race and class are you? Which is your favourite?
Rob Overmeyer (RO): I play all the time! My main is a Halfling GWF currently 2.7k on PC and a Halfling TR climbing the ranks on Xbox. I really like the GWF in group play and while I may not top the DPS charts I have been able to pull out a win in several dungeons after seeing most of the party go down. As for Xbox, although it’s a bit FotM to run a TR as my go to for PvP. I’m not running perma or anything but I like catching a cleric out of position and giving them a surprise. I also like the stealth-battle gameplay that can play out once in a while at a CP. Backcapping to find yourself in a 1v1 with another TR can be a lot of fun.
TiX: Describe to our readers what your role is day-to-day in terms of Neverwinter for Xbox One, including future Xbox One updates and DLC launches.
RO:I am the Executive Producer of Neverwinter PC and Xbox. Most of all my days are pretty busy and when I am not planning future modules and game direction, analyzing the business and looking at what we need to improve in the live game I am playing Neverwinter. My day usually consists of meeting with the team, leads and publishers to get a sense of where we are at and what is up next. I am a pretty hands on EP and I like to be a useful part of the development process. The reality is that I get to work with some great folks on Neverwinter and there is little better on the dev team than brainstorming cool new features and content to get to our fans.
TiX: Were you and the team pleased with how Neverwinter for Xbox One was received?
RO: Yes, we are very excited with how the game has been received and we are even more excited to keep bringing tons of really cool gameplay to our console fans. We did have some struggles in the beginning but we have been improving Neverwinter with each patch.
TiX: The Elder Scrolls Online is now out for console; are you a fan?
RO: I am a fan of the Elder Scrolls, what RPG fan couldn’t be? I think taking the Elder Scrolls online and offering a persistent multiplayer world was a great and logical next step. I have a ton of respect for the team and the work they did to take such a big universe with a fantastic history and fan following and get it online.
TiX: What is it like working alongside Wizards of the Coast?
RO: It is really fantastic to work with WotC. We meet every week and talk about what we are working on and get the business out of the way. It’s more than the normal approval process we get to talk about cool and new things that would be cool to see in our worlds. One of the most exciting things we get to do is go meet up with the designers and world builders at WotC and get a glimpse into what they are working on for the distant future. As a fan and a developer it is really cool to be able to see where the stories are going. WotC is a fantastic partner and we always have a fun time when we get to talking about D&D.
TiX: Had you, prior to working on this, played any tabletop games? If so which ones were they and did you draw any influences from them?
RO: I played D&D but more casually than most of my friends that played. I also played minis and became way more interested in the artistic aspect of table top games. I really got into painting minis of all kinds. Friends would give me boxes of minis and I would paint them. Most of my paints and bits were covered by my friends for painting their figs. I got into all sorts of board games like Betrayal and Zombies and still play them regularly.
TiX:A few outlets and communities have commented on how the Neverwinter console community is pretty mute and none existent. What’s your overall perception of this?
RO: Early on, shortly after launch we noticed the same things. When I would play I would talk in /Zone to get no response to LFG or even giveaways. It turns out there was a bug in chat that hid chat unless you were a friend with someone. We have since fixed that and the game chat is much livelier. It is a shame that we had the chat bug. It really made the game seem much smaller without the chatter. It’s all fixed now and people should give it a try.
TiX: What was the biggest challenge in porting Neverwinter from PC to Xbox One?
RO: Getting the backend working and integrated to Xbox One was a huge amount of work. Sometimes the task exposed bugs that we could fix but it also covered some up. Additionally, the controls were a tough one. We wanted to get them right and feel like we did.
TiX: It was recently announced that there would be five free pieces of DLC coming to Xbox One, including Tyranny of Dragons and Elemental Evil. What can you tell us about these?
RO: Well, it won’t be traditional console DLC. These updates will be 100% free and will download automatically when you log in and patch. Just log in and get new content, classes, level cap increase, rewards and much, much more. Following the Tyranny of Dragons story the Xbox fans can look forward to 3 huge zones with a ton of content and rewards that feature more campaign content. There is also the Elemental Evil expansion that adds a new class in the Paladin, 4 new zones that take the player from 60 to 70 and some truly epic dungeons and encounters.
TiX:How well has the F2P model for Neverwinter gone down with console owners?
RO: It has gone very well. Gamers are fans of games and even bigger fans of good games. Neverwinter is the best free to play MMO on any console. Our fast paced combat feels fantastic on console and is a lot of fun. You can get in and play from start to finish with your friends and never miss out on any content because you don’t have that pack or DLC your friend has. It would be hard not to like that. Going forward I think that our free updates, events and expansions will continue to be well received.
Thanks to Crypcic Games, Perfect World Entertainment and of course Rob Overmeyer for their support.
You can read more about what is to come in Neverwinter: Rise of Tiamat here and watch the trailer below.
Hands up, who’s played Neverwinter? If you haven’t ventured forth into the Forgotten Realms of Neverwinter yet, then you’re missing out, truly, you are. Cryptic Studios and Perfect World Entertainment have confirmed that the MMORPG is the top free-to-play title on Xbox One, and that’s no surprise as it’s epic.
Cryptic have also confirmed that in an effort to keep the world of Neverwinter fresh, they will be releasing five free expansions this year that will source material from popular Dungeons & Dragons’ storylines, including Tyranny of Dragons and Elemental Evil. There are currently over 1.6 million players to-date. Here are some other key stats from Perfect World Entertainment’s first foray into the console market.
2.3 million characters created, with over 92,000 reaching the level 60 cap
86 million minutes of Neverwinter play time
16 billion Astral Diamonds earned
10 million parties formed
92 players have killed over 1,000 dragons
Over 1 billion enemies slain, including undead, orcs and bandits
You have been a busy lot and Bryan Huang, CEO of Perfect World Entertainment is thrilled;
As our first entry into the console market, we’re absolutley ecstatic to see the success of Neverwinter on Xbox One. Our goal with our online games is to create worlds that players want to play in, and support them through fine tuning their gaming experience and introducing fresh content with expansion releases.
Keep your eyes peeled for further information, which we’ll bring you as we get it.
You made it to part three of our massive Neverwinter review! Congratulations adventurer, have an extra 1,000xp as a reward. So what’s coming up in part three? We’ll be looking at professions (everyone needs one, right?), the in-game crafting system that’s based on your profession, the economy of Neverwinter and the Auction House. We’ll also be giving you our final verdict and score.
If you haven’t read parts one and two of our Neverwinter review, I suggest doing so before proceeding further. Part one is found here and part two here.
If you’ve played any RPG in the past, you’ll be familiar with Professions and crafting. In MMORPG’s professions not only act as a way to create yourself decent armour and weapons (or gear if you prefer) but also a way to earn money in-game. In Neverwinter the system works exactly the same and professions provide a way to make/customize armour, earn currency, items, and experience. Neverwinter’s system is slightly different to other MMORPGs but it won’t take long to adjust.
Professions are unlocked at level 10 and the immediate difference is that you won’t be performing crafting tasks yourself. Instead you’ll be hiring Craftsmen and sending them out to perform tasks on your behalf leaving you free to continue adventuring. Unlike most titles, you are also able to dabble in every profession available. A single craftsman for each profession can be acquired. These tasks take up a certain amount of time ranging from five seconds to upwards of 18 hours depending upon the complexity of what you need. You do have the option to speed this up by spending Astral Diamonds, one of the games many in-game currencies.
The majority of tasks will require you to use a number of different resources to complete them. These resources are consumable items that can be obtained through earlier tasks but mainly by using Skills and Resource Kits while dungeon delving or exploring one of the many regions within the game. In addition to resources you’ll also need a selection of different tools. By using tools of a good quality the resulting output of the task will be a much greater reward. The same can be said when assigning Craftsmen, if you have Craftsmen who are more experienced, make sure you use them for tasks with better rewards, they’ll also reduce the time it takes to perform the task. Both craftsmen and tools are known as Assets, neither of which are consumed when performing tasks.
If you are familiar with the likes of World of Warcraft, you’ll know that you are limited to one profession and one task at any time. In Neverwinter you don’t need to speak to ‘trainers’ to learn new professions and you can perform multiple tasks at once. You have nine slots for performing tasks and each slot can have a task related to a different profession as long as you have the required assets. This is a welcome change allowing more casual MMO players get involved.
There are nine professions to choose from; Alchemy, Artificing, Jewelcrafting, Leadership, Leatherworking, Mailsmithing, Platesmithing, Tailoring, Weaponsmithing. Leatherworking as an example, concentrates on creating armour for Hunter Rangers, Trickster Rogues, and Scourge Warlocks whereas Leadership will put you in charge of directing Mercenaries in performing tasks which upon completing you’ll be rewarded with gold, items, experience and additional Astral Diamonds. It’s worth investing time into your professions, as they become a valuable source of income during your time with Neverwinter.
Neverwinter contains a number of different currency types, but as you start off there will be three specific currencies you will encounter most frequently; Zen, Astral Diamonds and Gold (including Silver & Copper) GOLD (and Silver and Copper).
Zen is the currency obtained by spending real money, and can only be used while browsing the in-game Zen store. Many people are against models that include purchasing currency, but it has allowed for Neverwinter to be released as a free-to-play model, and as mentioned in part one of my review, the majority of items available for purchase in the Zen store can also be obtained by playing the game. The exception to this rule is a number of ‘service’ items that will enhance your Neverwinter experience such as additional character slots, and renaming a character. Zen points can also be obtained via Astral Diamonds on the Zen Astral Diamond Exchange.
Astral Diamonds are the primary currency in Neverwinter and the one you’ll be wanting to stock up on. It’s with Astral Diamonds you have the greatest freedom to buy high-end questing gear. Astral Diamonds themselves can be earned through NPC quests and missions, invoking and praying to your deity daily, the Leadership profession and completing daily dungeons and Skirmishes. Astral Diamonds can be used to purchase almost anything, from consumables to high-end gear, among other things. If you are looking to buy simple consumables like health potions and the like, it’s Gold you’ll be wanting to use. Gold (inc. Silver & Copper) is the in-game currency for consumables, such as healing and other potions, companions, mounts, etc. It is considered by many to be the role-playing currency as it is found through the game frequently and often by accident.
Learning a profession in World of Warcraft made me a lot of in-game gold, especially during Wrath of the Lich King expansion. Crafting items from high-end, valuable and rare materials and selling in the player driven Auction House made me very rich, well my character at least. Neverwinter has an Auction house as you can expect and it works in very much the same way as all MMO Auction Houses. The Auction House provides a way for players to offer goods for sale to other players and is a key part of the game economy. All purchases on the Auction House are paid for with Astral Diamonds, not Gold. When you list an item on the Auction house you’ll be able to set the starting price for bidding but also a ‘Buy Now’ price too. Don’t forget that the Auction House will take a 10% cut of the money made after each successful sale. Once sold you head off to a Postal Courier and collect your Astral Diamonds – this is the same if you are buying items from the Auction House, you would visit a Postal Courier to collect your purchase. The Auction House is a fantastic way of getting your hands on equipment, vanity items and more much earlier in the game as long as you can afford it. And don’t forget to sell your goods on there.
And there we have it – we’ve covered all the basics you need to know to get started inNeverwinter. But what did we think of it when all is said and done?Neverwinter has a bunch of shortcomings including some framerate issues, however if you’ve never played an MMO and like the idea of exploring one from your sofa and Xbox One without the need for a gaming PC, thenNeverwinter is a great introduction. For those of you that do take the plunge (and let’s be honest, it is free so why wouldn’t you?), you’ll discover an enjoyable and rewarding adventure that albeit the under par graphics, will keep your attention and ensure you come back for more.