Updated Fri, Aug 09, 2013 by Dalmarus
It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything about Neverwinter, but with the upcoming Fury of the Feywild content release just around the corner, I thought it was time to hop back in and see how my Tiefling wizard was doing. There still haven’t been any additional paragon paths added to the game, but tomorrow morning, there is something new coming – a new skirmish system.
If anyone else played the game like me, there are a lot of areas they out-leveled before they even discovered them. It was nearly impossible to keep my characters within the correct level ranges for the numerous dungeons in the game, let alone the skirmishes that were available in each area. I can understand how this is great for those that don’t want to have to play through the same content with an alternate character.
For those who are completionists though, it is extremely frustrating to out level things when all you’re doing is playing the game normally. Between using altars every hour you play, rest xp, mob xp as you run around, and the high xp quest rewards, once I hit level 24 or so, I started to quickly out distance areas I had quests in before I ever got to them. I honestly think you could level a character to max level in Neverwinter faster than any other MMORPG on the market today. That’s not a good thing.
But… the powers that be have found a way to resolve this issue at least in terms of skirmishes and to entice you into going back to play old skirmish areas. The new system is called “Call to Arms” and it’s essentially a heroic version of each skirmish area already in the game. To sweeten the pot (and convince players to actually go back and play those battles they missed while leveling their characters), the team at Cryptic is going to include loot that is unique to every Call to Arms skirmish area.
That means each individual area has loot specific to only that skirmish. While it’s not clear right now if there will be a companion available in every area, companions can be received as loot for those that participate. Along with companions, there are other cool bits of loot available for players to collect from each area, including potions, dye packs, transmutation items (so you can change the look of your character’s gear without paying the ridiculous “Change Appearance” fees in later levels when you change a new item to look like something you already have – they’re killing me!), and even more unique items. It should be interesting to see what all types of loot can be had.
Well that’s all well and good if you’re max level. What about the rest of the player base? Have no fear folks – the Neverwinter team has you covered as well. The Call to Arms system is available to all players between the levels of 5 and 60. It’s not clear yet if you can queue as a team yet, but the queue system can be used by any qualified player so they can participate.
So how are level 60 players going to play in a skirmish area that was originally intended for characters of a far lower level? I’m glad you asked and I’m equally glad that the development team didn’t take the cheap route so I don’t have to give you a cruddy answer. Rather than dropping a player’s level and abilities to scale to the area, each Call to Arms skirmish area has been altered in various ways to provide a challenge to players of all levels. Woot!
I’ve never been a big fan of the skirmishes in the game, but to be fair, it was mainly because I was too busy questing and running dungeons. By the time I would bother looking at a skirmish I was long past the level requirements and didn’t care about the ones available. As the team continues to work the kinks out of the Fury of the Feywild, I think this is a good way for them to gain a little breathing room as players like myself start running these Call to Arms events in the hopes of getting some unique loot. What can I say? I’m a sucker like that.
What about you? Will you be diving into the Call to Arms events trying to get some epic loot or is this just a case of too little, too late by the development team and you’re still going to ignore skirmishes in the game? Personally, I’m hoping the addition of the unique loot will make folks play a little harder and work together better in there, as my previous skirmish experiences always seemed to involve at least one queued player standing idly by or went running off to solo trash mobs while the rest of us were busting our asses trying to deal with the real threats. My fingers are crossed. How about yours?