Filling In The Blanks On Neverwinter's Character Sheet

It's been years since I've walked the streets of Neverwinter, rapier swinging with every step, ready for whatever dangers lurked in the alleys of one of Dungeons and Dragons' most notable locales. It's also been a while since I filled out a good old paper character sheet. Why not combine the two?

Due out early this year from Perfect World Entertainment's Cryptic Studios, Neverwinter is the latest in a long line of video games utilising the popular D&D setting. Back in the AOL days it served as the setting for the world's first graphical MMO, so this game has quite a pedigree to live up to.

Last week I managed to wrangle my way into the game's press beta event. I was so impressed by what I played that I spent a large portion of the past three days steeped in the first Neverwinter beta weekend.

I could write paragraph after paragraph about my experiences, but I figured I'd contain my enthusiasm in a format that Dungeons & Dragons players can better relate to, so here's my Neverwinter character sheet.

Note: I am used the 2nd Edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons character sheet as a template, because I am old. You're lucky I didn't pull out Comeliness.

Character Name: Neverwinter

Alignment: Chaotic Good — It is both of these things, and easy to role-play.

Race: Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game

Class: Free-to-Play

Level: 51 currently, with room to move.

Player Name: Cryptic Studios, whose other characters include Star Trek Online and Champions Online. Nice to see them try something new with the naming.

Family: Perfect World Entertainment, publishers of most of the free-to-play MMO games these days.

Homeland: The Forgotten Realms city-state of Neverwinter, the setting for the original graphical MMORPG, Neverwinter Nights.

Sex, Age, Height, Eyes, Hair: Just let this video portrait do the talking.

Click to view

Abilities

Strength: Neverwinter seems like the sort of game capable of supporting a large player base. Built on the stable foundation of one of Dungeons & Dragons' most beloved settings with character classes, races and plotlines derived from the official lore, it's certainly starting in a stronger position than many other free-to-play MMO titles.

Dexterity: Neverwinter's combat is all about movement and positioning. It's not a stand-still and fire sort of game. Positional damage plays a big part — a rogue does more damage from behind, two players standing to either side of an enemy gain a flanking bonus. If you've not got a sword and board, be prepared to dodge. Here's a taste, in my demo run with a group of four rogues and one healer.

Click to view <!==

Constitution: With a wealth of content drawn from decades of Forgotten Realms lore and the Foundry, where players create their own content and share it with the community, Neverwinter should have plenty of staying power.

Intelligence: Neverwinter is filled with smartly-designed systems. For example, when a player gains a level of experience they can hit CTRL-P and instantly see what powers and abilities they've gained. You can see the mechanic in action during the game's opening adventure.

Click to view

Wisdom: Cryptic Studios has been making games like Neverwinter since 2000, starting with City of Heroes, moving to Champions Online after selling the property to NCsoft, and eventually warping its way to Star Trek Online. The developer understands big-name geek properties and has experience translating pen-and-paper role-playing games into interactive electronic form.

Charisma: Neverwinter's environments are its most attractive feature. Wandering through the game's various dungeons, overland and city areas made me achingly nostalgic for my dice-rolling days. They feel as if they were torn from the pages of a D&D module and brought to life. The characters are a bit bland for my tastes — I've never been overly fond of Cyptic's avatars — but in this case the generic-feeling digital representations make it easier to imagine that it's me in the thick of battle instead of a female Halfling rogue.

THAC0 - To Hit armour Class Zero

Even in its current beta state, Neverwinter doesn't have to roll particularly high for a successful hit. The framework is in place for an engaging MMO with plenty of potential for building a strong community — the backbone of the genre. There's still work to be done — problems with ranged combat kept the control mage class from being playable in the beta, leading to a realm filled with rogues, warriors and clerics — but what I've seen so far is promising.

To be a critical hit, however, it still has to roll a 20.

There, you should have enough information to start playing. We'll leave the skills and equipment portion of the character sheet blank, so you can fill it in with whatever's convenient later. The dungeon master will never notice.


Comments

    None of the "click to view" links seem to work?

      That is correct, they do not.

        It appears the article is also 'in Beta'.

        Edit: To clarify, there are grammatical and formatting errors all throughout the article.

        Last edited 12/02/13 5:49 pm

    Sex, Age, Height, Eyes, Hair: Just let this video portrait do the talking.

    When I click the video it takes me to the screen of the cat using the computer.

    ...So Neverwinter is a cat?

    Really not a fan with what they are doing to the D&D classes in this game. Each class is actually a specific build from 4e (devoted cleric etc.). Which I think will remove a lot of the customising options when making a character. Also, they have stated that they are planning on launching with only 5 of these classes.... No ranger, no Paladin, no bard, no battle cleric. They have stated that more classes will be added after launch but how long will that take?

    I often jump into game betas to test them out in order to decided if I will play and often how much money I will put into a 'free to play' game. But the entry costs to get into the Beta weekends are rather huge, expect for the first level which wont give you any cool items at all anyway.
    You've gotta lol at the 'Robe of Useless Items' in the guardian (mid level) pack.

    From my experience with Perfect World games, they are a lot of fun, but expect to be throwing in more than you bargained for just to have an inventory size that allows for the collection of even a small number of items. Ohh and you will probably be paying extra to increase your bank size too so that you can store those items you managed to get back to a town with.

    I really hope they haven't killed the classes too much, as Id really like to play this one for at least a few months.
    And I really, really hope that I wont be paying for class based abilities, or the special armour which PW say you will need for particular play styles and battles.

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