Revisiting the State of the Game by Rob Overmeyer

Nine months ago Rob Overmeyer released a rather controversial State of the Game post on the official news blog. The Executive Producer talked about how far the game had come and outlined the roadmap for 2016. Back then we were very critical of the self-praising after months that in our eyes had been truly challenging for the game. Time has passed and Rob is no longer with the studio, but I’d like to fill a user request by revisiting and reviewing the promises made in March. Fittingly the Winter holiday is about gathering and looking back at the year. So let’s huddle at the campfire in Twilight Tor and get this started!

AD Economy

I’d like to begin with a key point that Rob made in his posting. With countless nerfs toplayer bot income the devs tried to accomplish a stable AD economy. Have to say I’m not an expert on these things and how to identify stability, but for players it’s more important to look at whether they feel they can make sufficient AD to progress anyway. While I personally feel that’s the case, the game could still do a much better job of rewarding gameplay. Earning ADs is an independent grind and you should know I’m not a fan of those.

Otherwise the AD you earn can mostly cover the stuff you need to progress given you are VIP and can claim the daily key. There are few exception however, most namely Companions, Mount Insignias and Weapon/Armor Enchantments. Those areas need a substantial amount of AD and cannot be easily grinded.

Elemental Evil

Neverwinter Elemental EvilI think not just me is hoping that we can put this mess to rest already. By using flowery phrases in the blog post Overmeyer tried to cover up the fact that they simply failed at balancing the level cap raise in virtually every area. Four modules later we’re finally at a point where this doesn’t really matter too much any longer. The 60-70 progression still sucks and is no true storyline, but at least the adjustments made the whole thing bearable.

The dungeon system meanwhile has completely moved on and the gap in progression caused by the module is no longer there anyway.

Class Balance and PVP

…we heard concerns from the community about class balance and representation that we needed to address before the NCL could come back. We are still working on the NCL behind closed doors and we would like to bring it back down the road.

Neverwinter DominationUnfortunately the state of competitive PVP is still the same, because the balancing is not complete. Overmeyer promised changes and they delivered some, but the process is really slow. It could very well be that we’re a few months away from another NCL season.

Guild Strongholds are an associated topic because its PVP is pretty much dead. So it’s safe to say the Alpha phase didn’t really help to deliver a better experience to the players.

2016 Outlook vs. Review

Overmeyer promised to make progress in all of these areas: endgame, rewards, guilds, professions and general bug crushing. I think we can negate that for guilds, professions and rewards. Not only did professions not change, but with the Gateway gone the system even regressed. Not much has been done for Guilds and their Strongholds as well and the corresponding PVP as mentioned is dead. Rewards are being worked on, but only because a major fuck-up and ensuing shit-storm forced their hands. Gotta give them however that they delivered a re-work in light-speed. The new design is scheduled to go on preview soon.

I’m undecided on bugs. I think we have fewer than we used to, but not sure their time to fix them has gone down. The same applies to the endgame. They definitely added more challenge, but it’s also evident that this game will never see true raid content. On the other hand they didn’t do enough against the grind. It’s still not possible to maintain multiple characters and Voninblod added another layer of obtuseness. Overall no category gets a true check here in my eyes although you can’t rule out that they worked on stuff that has yet to see the light.

Communication

Rob put an emphasis on improving communication and I do think they made some strides. Especially with new Community Manager Nitocris83 and Thomas Foss in charge of the design team things are definitely trending into the right direction. The latest Winter Festival issues have been treated incredibly for example. This might actually be the lone true bright spot.


We haven’t been high on the posting right from the start and in hindsight it seems we were right. Not a lot of the promises made have truly been fulfilled. So a little bit more restraint and self-criticism would have been appropriate.

What’s your opinion on the post as 2016 comes to a close? Share your thoughts in the comments below or visit the corresponding thread on our message board!

Neverwinter UN:Blogged is always looking for writers to contribute to the blog. If you are an active player and search for a way to spread your opinions, analysis, diaries or reviews to more than 35,000 regular visitors, then don’t hesitate and contact us on our message board or email! We are currently especially looking for console and PVP content, but that’s not exclusive. There is no frequency requirement, you post how often you want.

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.

3 thoughts on “Revisiting the State of the Game by Rob Overmeyer

  • Avatar
    December 22, 2016 at 8:22 am
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    This is what I posted (below in quotes) as a repose to that letter.. frankly I dont think much has really improved.. all the anti botting measures seem more important to them, then delivering solid and entertaining content.

    “What was wrong:

    There were several issues, they messed up progression pacing, so newer players clearly couldn’t get FROM point A (say a new 1.6k i level lvl 60) to point B.. finish lvl 70 and doing t1s) They DID not listen to many of us who STATED over and over to leave dread ring and sharander at 60 for campaigns.. THIS wouldve fixed EVERYTHING just about.

    They messed up powers/feats/enchants.. ALMOST none worked right at rank 4 for a month or TWO or THREE after mod 6 release (you get a power point.. put it into a rank 4 power.. and BAM .. it now DOES half the damage.. or NO damage or TWICE as long cooldown as the rank 3 did). You paid 3 million AD to upgrade to whatever trans enchant and BAM.. it actually hurts your own and TEAM dps!

    They had some bugs on power points.. and feat progression .. SO when it broke, you were left out of the cold.. they said they would fix it, but NONE of my own messages were ever answered and I had to pay out of token pools to fix my toons and even then.. until they released underdark I believe, one of my toons (my tr) couldnt be fixed at all. They fixed this eventually after almost 6-7 months of it being broken! via a patch, that I THEN had to use my own token.. but at least it worked then.

    What was right:

    Game was refreshingly struct-ed differently.. with NEW rotations, class balance and the need for control, dps, heals, tanks again and in fact IT WAS really fun to get say a 2k alt through spinward and using a healing pet to do so.

    T2s were REALLY fun, and getting through them was difficult and a badge of honor before ARP bug was fixed.
    ETOS shouldve been doable for any say average group of 2.5k’s
    ECC I would say around 2.7-8k
    and EWgD about the same.. immunity phasing was really delicate and you really needed a good healer and mostly a paladin to keep people up.

    the game had the right difficulty for veterans.. but had NO progression for anyone else.

    They now dialed it WAY back down to ezy mode.. making nothing to do with geared folks again. But they also removed almost any source of income in the game.. so what used to take say 100 runs in old T2s to get good gear/money .. now will take you about 1000 runs to get same AD/progression (yes that is a very serious statement.. prepare to farm and farm and farm)

    So just making them harder wont be much of a answer either.. as all it will do is take 3x times as long to get anywhere in game.

    They dont have a good balance of risk vs reward at all and neither can they seem to get a good progression point pacing for all players in game.. from new players to veterens.. just really off the mark .

    This made long time veterens and newer players go boinkers.. they then removed leadership at some point in that time frame and bam.. all hell froze over.

    Its not that leadership removal was all that bad.. in fact I was ok with it.. BUT THEY took months and months to fix costing..

    It was a VERY difficult 6-8 months for them (april onwards) and they lost alot of poeple both on thier own staffing and on playerbase.

    They have made some progression in some areas, but have failed in others tremendously.

    I guess that would be my synopsis in the state of their game. “

    Reply
  • Avatar
    December 26, 2016 at 12:01 am
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    In my opinion neverwinter became much better than it was some time before. A lot of problems were decided by devs in class balance in difficulty of dungeons and in countering with farming bots.

    I believe in Mr Thomas Foss and in all his team. Because changes that came in patch notes are a signal of that the methods and priorities of criptycs has changed.

    Game development is really really hard process. It is very laborious process. And that is why I think that phrases about speed of development process written by people who don’t know anything about computer programming and about game development are laughable.

    As practice shows that alredy a lot of problems has been decided. And more patch notes with class balancing bug fixes are upcoming. I really feel that devs work in right direction now. And I would like to wish them pleasent and productive work.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    December 26, 2016 at 5:49 am
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    The game has become a bigger disaster in short.

    Professions are broken.

    Endgame content is broken (CN speed farms, v lil point in FBI, massive overgearing and self sufficiency make the game so low skill)

    Communication is dire, perhaps NW players should try other MMOs as the comms are better on a lot of other ones.

    Content is weak, mostly ppl do eLoL, CN and mDemo until twisted, Tia is a lagfest and Siege is dead.

    The constant pushing ppl to spend snd throwing it in your face is repulsive.

    The class balance and use is the worst in any MMO ive seen. Healers are dead its all DPS burn with a little offheal or total self heal. Even tanks are redundant in all bar FBI unless you want buffs…buffs are OTT.

    The only positive is the lvling of SH gives some putpose

    Reply

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