Dungeons & Dragons Neverwinter Beta Opens to All Later this Month


City of Heroes and Champions Online developer Cryptic Studios has been working away on its Dungeons & Dragons MMORPG Neverwinter for a few years now. Development has been going so long the studio has actually been through two buyouts during the process, beginning work under Atari before ultimately becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of Perfect World Entertainment. All that work and upheaval is about to payoff.

Beginning April 30th, Neverwinter, a free-to-play action MMORPG based in the popular Forgotten Realms campaign setting, will enter its open beta testing phase. D&D fans around the world will have unrestricted access to the online fantasy world at long last.

But first, Cryptic and Perfect World will reward loyal members of the Founder’s Pack Program with one more closed beta weekend beginning Friday, April 12. During this 60-hour beta event, Founders will be the first players to experience the game’s profession system, with the ability to try four professions, including Leadership, Mailsmithing, Platesmithing and Leatherworking.

“The direct response and support from the Neverwinter community during our Closed Beta Weekends have pushed us to make Neverwinter the best free-to-play MMORPG anyone has yet seen,” said Cryptic Studios Executive Producer and COO, Craig Zinkievich . “On April 30, we go into Open Beta. That’s when the world we’ve labored for years to build comes to life — that’s when every gamer can login and play what we’ve worked so hard to create. We could not be more excited.”

“We’ve never been in a better place launching a game,” said Jack Emmert , CEO, Cryptic Studios. “While the entire team is focused on launching Neverwinter’s Open Beta on April 30, we still wanted to thank those committed Founders who stuck with us. Since the beginning of Neverwinter’s Beta Weekends, our Founders have shown us that Neverwinter offers engaging game mechanics, unique features and a gameplay experience that is parallel to subscription or paid games. They have become our biggest supporters and we wanted to give them Beta Weekend 4 as a token of our appreciation.”

For anyone curious to know more about the game, here’s a new video that answers the simple question, “What is Neverwinter?”

And let’s cap things off with a stack of screenshots…

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