I’ll be the first one to tell you that I know nothing about Dungeons & Dragons. I know it is an RPG-board game-thingy made by the Wizards of the Coast, but as far as anything else goes, I have zip. Nada. Nothing.

That probably makes me either the worst or the best person to review Neverwinter, a free Xbox Live game released a couple of weeks back. You could have told me the game was based on characters from Paul Zippy and Do-da Brothers, and I would have believed you if it wasn’t for the big D&D logo on the game’s splash screen.


All I knew was that it was free, it was a RPG and it was an MMO making it a MMORPG. Now… I’m not completely clueless when it comes to MMORPG as I have played my fair share of Guild Wars back in the day.

To say that I’m rusty is a bit of an understatement. But with that said, I jumped head-long into Neverwinter, and what I found was a rather charming game with a lot of elements to keep me busy.

But that is also the game’s downfall, which I will get to in just a moment. At the start of the game, players can set up and create the character that they want to play with complete with back story and customizable facial features. I’m not going to go into too much detail here, but expect the usual classes of upfront axe-swingers right through to spellcasters.

From there, you have to make your way towards Protector’s Enclave, which serves as the central hub for where everything happens.

It is here where you will get new quests, buy and trade items and where you can rest your character to build up strength for the next fight. It’s very much like Sanctuary in Borderlands and The Tower in Destiny.

Being an MMO, this is also where you will encounter many other online players possibly about to do the same quest or activity as you.

Since the game is built around online player participation, you will often find others in your game instance, and while they might be on a different quest than you, they will still be able to help kill whatever is standing in your way.

But one of the problems with the game is that I can honestly not tell you what the overall plot is. I mean there is one, but there are so many “go do this”, “go fetch that” or “go kill him” missions, that the main plot often gets lost.

And each new area that you go to, of which there are about 10 or 12, there are more people who want to give you a variety of quests. In your Journal, where all the active and complete quests are displayed, there is also no mention of which quests contribute towards to main story.

Another problem with Neverwinter is that there are about six or seven different currencies to buy stuff with. And then there are microtransactions. The main currency of the game is Zen, which you can buy 1000 of for $10. Or you can buy a simple weapon for 13 000 Seals of the Lion which will take about a gazillion days to get through normal means.

But at the end of the day you learn to work your way around it, and it turn out that Neverwinter is actually a pretty decent game. At its core it is very complex but it has the ability to quickly suck you in for hours.

8/10