This is yesterday's MMO by the merits of its own content, but compensates by potentially ushering in a DIY revolution.
Then again, if that's all the freedom you need, then Neverwinter is a free, easy and very, very simple game that you can put as much time into as you like.
Neverwinter's fast combat makes it one of the best free MMORPGs on Xbox One, even with its nasty frame rate problems.
There's no denying that Neverwinter is derivative. It's a game of borrowed parts and tweaked ideas that sometimes seems a little behind the times. But each of the game's systems, from combat to crafting, is expertly crafted--simultaneously offering depth, fun, and accessibility. Cryptic has created a finely tuned, smooth game that remembers the lessons its predecessors learned, and in the process bookends a long progeny of MMORPG development.
Neverwinter's engaging combat and plentiful free content make up for limited customization.
Neverwinter's combat is very good, but not quite good enough to carry the thin game built around it.
To an extent, I did enjoy my time with Neverwinter. It's extremely mindless grinding, which can be fun now and again when you're feeling non-committal. And from what I've learned of the endgame offerings, when you're fully leveled, you can just experience much of the same. I'm not sure how long someone would want to experience more of the same, and I don't feel like anything I've played warrants going through it all again with another character. It's just not all that compelling, but if you have friends you'd like to quest with, it's certainly something to do… like many other things.
If you're a Dungeons & Dragons fan you may be willing to push aside the shortcomings. For everyone else it's a great vacation spot but not the kind of place you'd want to live in.
Neverwinter is a fun game, and it's an excellent introduction to the MMO genre. It doesn't feel like you need to dump hundreds of hours into it, either, which may be a drawback for those concerned about endgame. However, I only made it so far through, and Cryptic seems prepared to support the game with new content like Gauntlgrym and the free expansion Fury of the Feywild, which is due this summer.
Neverwinter fails to nail the social aspects and adapt to consoles effectively, but it's still a great solo experience. A solid F2P loot-grind with D&D flavor, but it lacks the social aspects that highlight the MMO genre elsewhere.