Well I guess that’s what you call timing. After I have been detailing ideas for campaign changes of Fury of the Feywild, Shadowmantle and Curse of Icewind Dale in recent weeks, the latest preview build includes massive tweaks that are scheduled to be released with Neverwinter’s Module 9: The Maze Engine.
I’m glad the devs and I largely seem to have the same ideas about what the older campaigns are lacking. All AD from campaign tasks are scratched, which is even more than I proposed. I think some minor AD for a permanent boost like boons are OK, it was just that Icewind Dale wanted players to additionally pay for the campaign progress, which was absolutely annoying. But it’s not like I’m going to complain that you can now get the boons for free. Another related change is the removal of ADs from Lair keys. That’s rather big for Thayan Lair Keys, because given enough campaign currency and gold, players will be able to grind for Marks in the Dread Ring, which should make them generally cheaper on the auction house.
Speaking of keys I’m a little disappointed though that you still can’t get the campaign dungeon keys on a reasonable grind. I think those should be more accessible and available with completing the main dailies, lairs and Demonic Hunter quests, but the only area where this is possible remains Dread Ring. You can’t really circle all campaigns per day and acquire keys and then do the dungeons because it simply takes too much time. I guess being selective is part of the design though, but then the amount of quests needed per key still varies too much from campaign to campaign. In terms of overall campaign length the addition of Feywild Sparks to the Battle for Sharandar doesn’t seem to be enough to bring Fury of the Feywild in line with other campaigns. Same applies for Tyranny of Dragons where Linu’s Favors still are the major area of concern for multiple reasons.
But back to the positives: Several quests that lost viability or were a bad design to start with come with reduced currency costs or are reworked to grant Stronghold Campaign Vouchers, which is a good move because this was one of the bottlenecks of guild progression. Not sure why they kept the Black Ice Enchantments Tasks intact as I doubt that anybody is really doing it.
Another major area that received tweaks is the gear you can get from campaigns. Eternal (Example), Thayan Servitor (Example) and Iliyanbruen (Example) gear will all scale to character level and be equipable at 61. Together with a change to BtA it will become true leveling gear for 61-70 and can be farmed for ALTs, which is a minor albeit nice change for those that like to play multiple character. The devs themselves acknowledged that the game is currently not very ALT friendly and more changes like this are probable going forward.
There is tons of other stuff like weekly rewards for Strongholds and Tiamat, which should up the population there, and usability changes to the new mount and queue system. So it’s worth giving the patch notes a read. What do you think about the changes to the campaigns? Are they sufficient or do the still lack? Post your opinion in the comments or head to our forum.