Bag of Tricks Vol. 51: Incriminating Document Locations in the River District

Welcome to the latest installment of our Bag of Tricks! On some days you will find useful tricks, gimmicks and ideas here that can make life in Neverwinter Online easier. Some of the stuff should be well known, but since even veterans learn something new every now and then, chance is you can, too. You may have stumbled upon on of the found quests in the River District called “Reclamation Specialists”. Certain “adventurer” mobs drop the quest granting Incriminating Documents and players need to find five more in order to complete the thing. Turns out those adventurers are hard to find, but our JayAgeDee luckily put effort in and mapped some spawn locations.   Go far so good. Unfortunately however while these are location where you can find adventurer mobs, they don’t spawn consistently. At any time there seems to be a certain number of groups active, but the locations cycle. The map also might not be 100% accurate. So if you’ve found more, let us know so we can add them! In any case we hope this will prove useful for those that plan to complete the quest! Bag of Tricks Vol. 46: The Value of Potions and Buffs Bag of Tricks Vol. 47: How Much Elk

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Kali Gold and the Difficulty of Making it on Twitch with Neverwinter

If you’re following Neverwinter on Youtube and or Twitch, you probably know Kali Gold as the premier PC streamer of the game. About six months ago he started the ambitious journey to make Neverwinter great again, to bring more viewers to a game that was hovering around a measly 100. Yesterday this journey ended with a video announcement in which Kali basically stated that the effort was no longer worth it. We’d like to thank him for the content he has provided over the last months and wish him all the best on and off the screen going forward. What’s the issue with streaming NW? A streamer quitting is in itself not an overly interesting fact. They come and go, just like the regular gamers that play Neverwinter. But it illustrates the trouble you can run into if you’re putting your effort into streaming on Twitch. Especially an MMO, especially a considerably small one like Neverwinter. Kali Gold did probably receive as much support as you can get. Be it from other streamers, a spotlight on Arcgames or through frequent mentions and features on our site. Yet he never surpassed 150 average viewers on the channel, a far cry from

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Which of the New Dungeon Chest Rewards is Worth Looking at?

A few months have passed since the controversial key changes and the new dungeon chest rewards that came with it. So it’s time to look at the viability of the introduced items. Do they fill a purpose? Which are viable, which are useless? Let’s weight in! Salvage Fodder Unfortunately some items are crap and should be donated to the salvage anvil immediately unless you really do not have any epic replacement on one of your characters. Draconic Guises: I do not like them at all. Aimed at true min-maxers, their viability is limited and your random alt will feel the lack of Hit Points on the gear. Bloodstained Shirt: The Bloodstained Shirt is nice if you need an infusion of Life Steal, but the power buff is inexistent in an environment where players mostly operate at full health. Most current Shirts should serve players better. Brynnyr’s Demise: The buff of Brynnyr’s Demise is weird. Builds that aim for max power normally will get Defense from the item and vice versa. I fail to see a niche unless you’re really looking to get more Defense on an otherwise offensive build. ALT Supply There are quite some items that are viable for alternate characters and even mains

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Why PVP Needs an Easier Path to Competitiveness

It’s not hard to feel sorry for PVP these days. The game mode is all but dead and the most recent livestream didn’t reveal any hint that it might change this year. I’m additionally amazed how little the devs and the community seem to understand what PVP is really lacking. I see tons of threads discussing various minor balancing issues. Too much healing, one-rotating builds. This stuff does matter, but is a secondary issue right now. Then Thomas Foss mentioned dueling and maybe an additional map during the stream. Apart from the fact that this is months away because they haven’t even started working on it, nobody is playing PVP on the four maps we have. What makes you think that an additional one or looking into 1v1 and 3v3 will change that? Even queues are not the #1 priority any longer Of course the queues and matchmaking remain a valid point. But even that discussion was so Mod 8 when some guys were actually still interested. Don’t get my wrong, I still think a permanent solo queue for a competitive leaderboard plus a premade one to arrange matches has to happen. But it’s no longer a pressing issue with a constant decline

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Module 11 Artifact Weapons Restoration Guide

The Module 11 Artifact Weapons were a welcomed addition to the game. Not as great as Relic ones, they use the old marks in the upgrade process and come with a variety of set bonuses. Players widely see them as alt and lowbie friendly alternative to Storm Kings Thunder, because nothing is gated behind endgame content. There’s still some grind attached to the restoration process though, so let’s go through the needed mats and see how you can get them. In case you want a preview of the set bonuses and the classes they might fit best, browse here. Material List After buying the weapons from the campaign store, the full material list for both the Main and the Off-Hand reads as follows: 5500 Abandoned Treasures 105 Arcane Magical Writings 85 Arcane Focus Abandoned Treasures Let’s start with the easy stuff. Treasures come from virtually everywhere. The Treasure Hunt, Heroic Encounters, the “Secure the District” campaign task, demiplane instances and Illusionist’s Gambit skirmish. By just running the campaign you should be able to amass more than enough Treasures over time to restore your weapons of choice. If you have to, running gold completions of the skirmish probably is the best way to farm them.

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Neverwinter and Psychology: Does the Reward Model Work?

As you might now the Game Developer’s Conference ran at the start of the month. I didn’t catch a lot of it other than a few Cryptic and PWE employers attending, but stumbled upon an excellent write-up of user experience researcher Ben Lewis-Evans’ speech about Player Psychology and Rewards. It’s a very interesting article as a whole and although the original topic was more meant to take a shot at the current neuromyths around dopamine, it offers a lot of general advise how rewards should be structured in a successful game. So I was curious to see if Neverwinter matches the claims of Ben Lewis-Evans, and subsequently whether some systems are built to motivate players. RNG is conditioning Sorry guys, but randomness works as motivational reward system. The classic case of operant conditioning would be performing a set number of “responses” (quests) and get a reward.  But players do actually come back and perform tasks, even if they do not know the numbers of needed repetitions. The devs also set up the game well in other very basic areas of motivation. Consistent feedback splits progression in tiny blocks. The XP bar, dailies, weeklies are some examples. More Guidance is Needed Players want to know where to get stuff

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River District Zone Guide: Dig Sites, Heroic Encounters and Demiplanes

We went over the campaign progression on Tuesday and today I’d like to follow up with a guide of the zone mechanics. It’s not extraordinary flashy, but there’s a few hints that are nice to know. Dig Sites As I’ve already predicted on my preview of the River District, the battle between players and the AI about Guard Posts and Dig Sites never transpired on live. It’s just too many players. So on most maps all Dig Sites will be already unlocked when you enter it. This means you most likely won’t need to buy extra maps from Quartermaster Kendricks to open them yourself. It can’t hurt however to have a stock of each with you in case you are going to need them. Simply unlocking the Guard Posts activates an attached Dig Site by the way, you do not actually have to buy any units. Then walk over to the Site Foreman and get yourself a pass to enter. These passes grant access for an hour and then disappear. They do unnecessarily take an inventory spot once completed though and can be discarded in that case. The map dynamics might change once not everyone and their mother is running the

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After Change, Voninblod Farm is Right Where it Needs to be

Today I’d like to talk about one of the more underrated changes of the Cloaked Ascendancy update. In the new module, all Relics return 50% more Voninblod. It’s kinda interesting the devs are not getting more credit for the change given how much players protested when they learned Neverwinter would reintroduce Empowerment in Storm Kings Thunder. Maybe it’s because players tend to post only when there’s something to complain about. But maybe it’s also because the mechanic is still a bad design, even with considerable more Voninblod from Relics. The mechanic still has to go To be clear, I still don’t like Empowerment one bit. Any mechanic that requires players to constantly grind in order to maintain their gear is absolutely horrible. For the same reason I’d like to burn all Overload Enchantments, another Icewind Dale invention that can be labeled an utter failure. If you are serious about grinding and progression in this game, you have more than enough stuff to do. Sharandar, Dread Ring, daily ADs, you name it. We never needed Voninblod, because it directly competes with other activities on our daily task list. In case you don’t have unlimited amount of time per day, it’s an either or.

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Evidence of Evil is the Bottleneck in the River District Campaign

A few days have passed in the new Module so it’s time to look at the new campaign progression and bottlenecks a bit. I’ve already covered a lot in my preview, but this post will go a little bit more in-depth in terms of numbers. The most obvious thing players complain about is the lack of the main progression currency Evidence of Evil. The daily quest grants 25 and you can get a few more through Heroic Encounters, Dig Sites and Found Quests. Unless you really invest an enormous amount of time though, you should most likely end your days with 27 to 29. The weekly quests adds 20 to an average of ~220 per week. In case you want to know when the weekly task unlocks and how it works, here’s an excellent thread that covers the details. Not all tasks make sense You’re currently looking at a six weeks completion for the full campaign, seven to eight with a weapon set. I have downgraded my estimation from 8-9 weeks on preview because as of right now, the last two tasks that reduce prices in the campaign store do not make sense. They cost more than you are likely about to

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Module 11 Ascended Artifact Weapons are well Balanced

Neverwinter’s Module 11: The Cloaked Ascendancy will come with four new sets of Ascended Artifact Weapons that match the Relic ones in item level. As soon as players found out on preview, a heated discussion started on message platforms. The new weapons are substantially easier to restore and use old Marks ion the upgrade process. Player that acquired the Relic ones in Sea of Moving Ice felt cheated, other applauded the devs for quickly moving away from the mess that SKT was. New weapons do not represent bis Despite all the noise, the balancing act on the new weapons seems just right. The devs made it known that they have no intention to make Relics obsolete. The set bonuses are what makes all the difference. Relics are a strong choice for offense and defense alike, the Ascended ones weaker and only boost specific areas. So let’s take a quick look on how you can acquire the new weapons in the Cloaked Ascendancy and who’s going to profit from them. Restoring: No Heroic Encounters! The upgrade process is pretty much on par with Relic weapons. You can buy the sets from a vendor in the River District and need to collect a sizeable amount

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