For MMOs, the path from PC to console has ever been one fraught with danger. Many have fallen by the roadside or at least suffered significant delays, The Elder Scrolls Online, for example, being pushed back on console to over a year after its release for PC.
This month, however, sees a new contender making the leap from keyboard to joypad. It’s time for Neverwinter, originally released for PC in 2013, to rock up on console and show its mettle.
The name Neverwinter should be familiar to players of classic RPGs. Based on Dungeons & Dragons gameplay and lore, the game promises to thrust players immediately into a realm plagued with chaos. After the fall of the city of Neverwinter’s last lord, the rising dead laid siege. The city’s remaining populace sprung to their own defence, establishing factions to defend against the blight. Neverwinter drops you right in the brown stuff and invites you to find your own way out.
Offering seven classic D&D character classes, Neverwinter includes the usual RPG fare: swords, shields, stealth and magic. Of course, anything derived from such hallowed ancestry as D&D is bound to be nothing short of a masterclass in traditional roleplaying, but how does the gameplay stack up in the console port?
Where other MMOs have lumbered players with an enormous range of skills and abilities, Neverwinter’s tack is to place the onus on masterfully orchestrating battle with the judicious use of a smaller number of skills, deployed rapidly in concert with a tightly coordinated team. Such rapid action should compliment the joypad interface.
The game itself is surely one to summon excitement, and we here at Console Monster will certainly be eagerly anticipating the Xbox One release on March 31st. What’s less certain is whether the bowels of console multiplayer will spew up a team that’s up to the challenge.