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PAX West 2018: OCC Interviews Neverwinter Lead Designer Thomas Foss


OverclockersClub got an exclusive interview with Neverwinter’s Lead Systems Designer, Thomas Foss, at PAX West 2018. We gathered questions from some of the Neverwinter fans and theory-crafters. Here are the summary notes of the interview.

Firstly, a new class will “not be introduced into Neverwinter before 2019.” There are lots of rumors about Bards and Druids, but Foss didn’t confirm anything more specific. The reason is that the team is focusing on balancing the current classes before adding a new class into the mix. 

Speaking of class balancing, there is none planned for Mod 15, but for sure in Mod 16 and possibly more future mods, if needed. The Neverwinter team has two assistant developers focused solely on class balancing. Foss also said that about 25% of each mod’s planning time is devoted to class fixes and updates (except for Mod 15 apparently). 

When asked about Scourge Warlock fixes specifically, Foss said that he didn’t know any specifics off the top of his head, but he has notes somewhere about what’s planned; class balancing is delegated to other developers. 

We also asked him if there are plans to bring back the old dungeons. His answer was direct and succinct: Yes! He said that he couldn’t elaborate on the issue because he didn’t want to give any “spoilers.” He cited the same reason when asked if Item Level requirements for dungeons were going to be improved. 

Another question asked was about plans for introducing mid-ranged content. Foss said that the new Module 15 campaign, Heart of Fire, was going to start at level 15 and progress with you all the way to Level 70. However, it still has an “end prize” that will be enticing for end-game players. That’s technically not mid-ranged content, but I’m interested what this prize will be. I’m thinking it’s going to be an inventory bag or something similar; I can’t think of anything else that’s appealing to all players. 

We also asked Foss about plans for Stronghold expansions. He said, “Not in Mod 15, but a later mod.” 

One interesting question/proposal was adding a Guild Historian. This would be a Stronghold NPC that the guild leadership can use like an information center. This would be a holding place for things like the guild’s history, guild rules, rank expectations, and anything else that a guild might want to be recorded. Foss said, “I’ve never thought of that. It’s a great idea!” He then said that this is the people’s game, and that player input has helped the game to evolve and become what it is today. 

Our last question was when the 64-bit sound bug is going to get fixed. Foss laughed and said, “that’s above my pay grade.” He also said that it was an issue being resolved by the “engineer wizards.”

All in all, I think it was a great interview. I figured most of the questions weren’t going to be answerable, so we got a lot more information than I expected. I’m excited for Mod 15 and all the changes coming our way! 

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