Fans of the Neverwinter Nights series rejoice! Cryptic and Atari have released an announcement of an upcoming addition to the series simply called Neverwinter. Promoted as a co-op experience with a custom building tool aptly called ‘Forge’, the newest release is looking more like an MMO and less like the single-player slaughter-fest previous campaigns have been unfairly publicised as being. While the original Neverwinter Nights came with a campaign that was just functional as a co-op experience, further expansions and releases were more socially friendly.
The original Neverwinter Nights also gave dungeon masters an extremely useful world builder complete with a plentiful array of scripts at their disposal to create everything from single-player quests to gigantic persistent worlds experienced by up to 55 players at any given time. Neverwinter Nights 2 brought forth a significant boost graphically though early compatibility and resource issues caused some to shy away and keep with the original title for their Dungeons and Dragons questing needs.
Below is the official press release sent out by Atari on the official website:
ATARI AND CRYPTIC STUDIOS ANNOUNCE NEVERWINTER™ COMING IN 2011 FOR PC
Storyline for new Co-op Roleplaying Game Inspired by R.A. Salvatore’s Upcoming Book Trilogy
Los Angeles, CA (August 23, 2010) — Atari, one of the world’s most recognized videogame publishers and Cryptic Studios, the acclaimed developers behind City of heroes, City of Villains, Champions Online and Star Trek Online, announced today the development of Neverwinter for PC. Neverwinter is a new online roleplaying game based on Wizards of the Coast‘s global property Dungeons & Dragons and the beloved city of Neverwinter.
Once a bustling location, Neverwinter has faced a great many disasters in the past hundred years. Rule of the city remains unclear following the unfortunate demise of the last Lord of Neverwinter and factions still battle for dominance after the all-consuming Spellplague took a high toll on the population. Even Neverwinter’s dead are beginning to rise from their graves and march upon the city they once called home.
“We’re beyond thrilled to develop a brand new version of Neverwinter. It’s been years since the original became a gaming icon and we’re honored to work with such a great franchise,” said Jack Emmert, COO of Cryptic Studios. “We’ve been working closely with Wizards of the Coast and R.A. Salvatore to create an authentic D&D adventure filled with compelling fiction and exciting gameplay.”
In Neverwinter, players choose to become one of five classic D&D classes and team up with friends or computer-controlled allies to form five-person co-op groups. Players also create their own storylines and quests utilizing an extremely user-friendly content generation system, tentatively codenamed Forge.
“Wizards of the Coast is excited to invite millions of fans back to Neverwinter with the launch of R.A. Salvatore’s Gauntlgrym,” said Liz Schuh, Brand Director for Dungeons & Dragons at Wizards of the Coast. “And we’re excited about the prospects for great digital gaming experiences based on this epic world.”
Neverwinter for PC is scheduled to release in Q4 2011 and is part of a multi-platform event, including a book trilogy from New York Times best-selling author R. A. Salvatore and a tabletop roleplaying game from Wizards of the Coast. Book one in Salvatore’s Neverwinter trilogy, titled Gauntlgrym, releases on October 5 of this year and lays the groundwork for the Neverwinter storyline. The novel previews the settings, characters and monsters from the PC game and details the events that lead up to this highly anticipated PC gaming experience.
To learn more about the game, please visit: www.PlayNeverwinter.com
Matt Ryan is a game reviewer and political writer as well as the host of the animated show “Daily PWN Weekly Review” on Treet.tv. He is currently the editor of DailyPWN.com.