On the Weird State of Everfrost Gear

I’ve already talked about Everfrost Gear before Storm Kings Thunder hit live. The topic however continues to amaze me and remains a very valid concern for players. On the official forum threads and posts still pile up from those that despise the Voninblod grind. Others say they are skipping the mod entirely. But is it really as bad as it seems? Three months after my initial post it’s time to revisit the topic!

Everfrost gear can be maintained

One weird aspect of the whole outcry is the fact that maintaining the gear isn’t as hard as you would expect. With the Frostborn set bonus and a purple Trowel you can farm 25,000 to 30,000 Voninblod in one hour. Given that the campaign is already completed, this should at least bring you through the week, right? So why is there such an opposition against farming for one hour per week to sustain BIS status?

Relics BannerGranted, without the goodies from the ZEN market grinding will take a bit longer. I get why people are complaining about it, but welcome to the monetization system of Neverwinter everyone. Voninblod is a pretty classic example of how the game tries to frustrate players so much that they will turn to real-money enhancements. If you don’t like it, there’s a chance you also won’t like other aspects of the game, and with it the game itself. I’m not saying I agree with the system, but it’s actually how the devs have always operated.

Too much grind

I think it has more to do with what I touched on three months ago and what I extensively wrote about in another piece. Players are overwhelmed by the amount of daily tasks and grind. It’s not that Voninblod mechanic is worse than anything else, but for many it’s the straw that broke the camel’s back. The issue also doesn’t even start with maintaining the gear, but acquiring it.

Armor Sets have always been kind of easy to get and mostly gated behind token systems. Since Elemental Evil there have been three Armor Sets that all came from Seals or Currency. You had to farm the latest content a bit, but would get there eventually. All of these sets additionally bind to account and can be farmed for alternate characters. Storm Kings Thunder now follows a new, more annoying pattern.

Mod 3 vs. Mod 10

Dwarven Valley Icewind DaleI know it’s getting a bit old, but let’s compare it with Module 3 once again, because it’s basically the same system. In both mods you needed to farm raw gear, only Black Ice Shaping has been replaced with restoration as second step in the process. The boots remain a HE reward, but the other pieces are now gated by RNG and no longer a token system. In Icewind Dale the Armor Set was available for just Black Ice, Mod 3’s Voninblod.

The restoration itself is also more annoying than Black Ice Shaping was. Back then the recipes required like three different resources that dropped from HEs. That’s up to a whopping 25+ for Arms, Head and Feet and 50+ for the Armor. In Icewind Dale you basically only had to farm Black Ice and were good. In Storm Kings Thunder it’s Voninblod, a shitload of Heroic Encounters and Fangbreaker Island. This is what makes the system so grindy before we even talk about keeping our set empowered. This is not like Mod 3, it’s much, much worse.

That’s why players complain. In a world where they already need to farm ADs and RPs daily and help with the guild’s Stronghold, the only truly casual area of the gear progression was replaced with a full independent grind, in which Voninblod empowerment is only the tip of the iceberg.

Too easy to skip

Other factors that we already highlighted on this site also still apply. The truth is that at least endgame toons can completely skip Storm Kings Thunder’s Armor set progression and still be able to run any content. Everfrost gear is not needed for pre-SKT content at all. The Resistance you get from the Underwear and boons seems to be enough to master Fangbreaker Island and probably even Svardborg. It’s uncertain whether the gear will be made more of a necessity in the future. For now though players can and probably are taking a slow approach. For the needed investment the set simply does not offer enough in return.

Maybe for the first time in the game the devs have to realize that the players do not take any grind just because it offers BIS. I don’t want to be absolute here though. Panderus already stated Black Ice Gear was a success on their end, whatever that means. So it could very well mean Everfrost is also performing well. The amount of players skipping the Mod or just the gear is still significant. You always have a few haters whenever a new update huts, but this time there definitely seem to be more of them.

Please get rid of it!

I personally sure hope the opposition is strong enough to either significantly lower both restoration and empowerment costs. Or even better, do not continue with this system for Armor sets. Black Ice Gear only lasted a mod, so here’s hoping Everfrost won’t prevail as well. Players have enough to do with other parts of the progression, nobody is going to get bored without the system.


Do you own the Everfrost gear or are you refusing to grind it? Share your thoughts and experience in the comments below or visit the corresponding thread on our message board!

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j0Shi

j0Shi

j0Shi plays the Neverwinter MMORPG since the open BETA in 2013 and is a regular contributor to the blog and the whole UN:Project. Originally a Guardian Fighter, he has built up ALTs of all classes and plays on BIS/near-BIS level.

9 thoughts on “On the Weird State of Everfrost Gear

  • Avatar
    November 24, 2016 at 11:00 am
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    20k in voniblod through 1 week i really don’t think so I just used up 50K in voniblod from just running in the new raid for last 3 or 4 days and remove it when i am not in there.And that does not include the 30K voninblod i needed to make new man hand weapon or any keys, store items. campaign boons and i am sure i am missing something else we need voniblod besides just maintaining armor.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    November 24, 2016 at 11:44 pm
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    Partially the dislike of the new zen enhancements comes from the fact that you cant really detect that is working for the most part. I have the runeforge kit for blackice, gotten when I didnt know any better. That you know every-time that you use it. You get a noticeable improvement in your performance on that black ice node, with 2x the return and 1/2 the time.

    With the trowel you never really know its there except for the 1 in 10 or 1 in 15 purples you get that you never get with the other trowels. That leaves 9-14 attempts that arent improved with your massive expense for 1 that is. The blue gear isn’t a lot better, 3 out of 4 uses it does nothing, but every once in a while you get a treat. That is actually better than the purple trowel, expense vs benefit and in feedback to the player.

    Combine this with the fact that you don’t need the gear. Why farm for temporary BIS gear when you can take that hour and run the same endgame dungeon 1 or more times? No, Ill pass. ..and this is from someone that generally likes working for that xtra little bit.

    At some point there is a difference between fun game with challenging obstacles and mind numbing repetition for no visible benefit. Its a fuzzy grey line, but they’ve jumped over it this time as they did with mod 3.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    November 25, 2016 at 12:51 am
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    I run around with 4 Parts of the armor, full empowerd and I have no Problem with the Voninblod Grind (actually, with the Treasure Map Mechanic, I have Overflow Voninblod).
    BUT, regulary I`m used to play 2-3 additional Toons BIS or almost BIS…but that would be to much grind, so my Toons scip that Mod

    Reply
  • Avatar
    November 25, 2016 at 2:03 am
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    I have fun doing FBI. I also like mSVA. I only have 3 pieces of the armor, yet. But the 4th will drop sooner or later. I will get it vivified. And after I have completed all of the campaign, I will spend every drip of vonimblood that is left and let it drain to tier 1, never to return. Vonimblood pretty much comes for free, so I don’t mind that part. Farming all the lanolin is the true obstacle. 100 hours of HE, no TY. I’m counting on getting it in other ways over time. And no way I will pay 30k a piece in AH. Armor set is not worth 6 million when you already have good armor.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    November 25, 2016 at 5:38 am
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    Ive yet to see anyone ingame with the new armor. The only thing that would change cryptic’s mind about anything would be a revenue drop. All the feedback on the forums they can safely disregard. Personally Im not even trying to get the armor and that might apply to the weapons as well. I dont see how people with jobs and families can complete this grind on even one character and Im not attempting it because even if I manage to do it, it would probably be just in time for the next tier of gear..

    Also dont forget, the key change is only delayed.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    November 25, 2016 at 6:19 am
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    I always get BIS, until now. I will only try to get the weapons only because they don’t require being continually empowered. I will wait for a mod without empowerment before I try to upgrade my armor…

    This empowerment bullshit has got to go!

    Reply
  • Avatar
    November 28, 2016 at 8:32 am
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    ITS THE FARMING FOR ALL THAT FREAKING LANOLIN!!!!! THEE most stupid freaking grind with HORRIBLE drop rate! We need tons and tons to restore our gear. 100 HE’s and 20 lanolin…really?? Round and round and round we go. STUPID!- -Darcy of Mountainair

    Reply
  • Avatar
    November 29, 2016 at 12:42 am
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    I am not pleased with this MOD. Taking it slow. I don’t like the fact that there is nothing to help build our strongholds up in this MOD. I do like maps but no stronghold material sucks. I have 3 toons over there. I started out strong but now…. It seems like a waste of time. We are working on our stronghold. I don’t want my guild doing quest and HE’s for hours and have no material for our stronghold. This MOD is a guild leaders worst nightmare.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    December 2, 2016 at 5:27 am
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    You guys can translate everything to a grind. Just play a bit every day and you get what you need, or chill and get it later. Farming relics is easy as pie. Relax already.

    Reply

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