There’s a reason why certain MMORPGs are seldom seen on consoles. Primarily because developers struggle to port them from PC, as they are often tricky to cross over seamlessly, whether its something being slightly off to other elements being simply too complicated to implement on console hardware. This results in the majority of the genre’s offerings remaining on the PC platform. There are exceptions to the rule however, and Neverwinter, available on Xbox One and PS4, could possibly be the front-runner for the best MMORPG port, and something that will hopefully fly the flag for future PC-based online role-playing games coming to the console platform.
Neverwinter hit Xbox One back in 2015, and was followed up by a release on PS4 in 2016. What it offered was a taste of what the genre gives for console players, with many common PC gameplay traits starring in the game from a home console perspective. Neverwinter was a pleasant surprise for me when it released on Xbox One, as it gave me an insight of a genre that had not necessarily passed me by, but one that I never really realized I was interested in, until I sank several hours into questing with my half-orc control wizard Snaga from Underdark.
What Neverwinter presents is a fantasy MMORPG based on the Dungeons & Dragons universe. In classic D&D fashion, Neverwinter takes players on quests with peers, as they explore dungeons, cities and interact with NPCs in a game brought to life by the Cryptic game engine. The console version isn’t without its issues in terms of the performance of the game, no doubt about that. Plus, there is a lesser community base compared to its PC counterpart, but still, it brings the overall MMORPG experience to a brand new audience (in my case included) and its something that could potentially see further gems from the genre make the switch to console in the future.
We’ve seen the likes of DC Universe Online, Star Trek Online and others make the leap, so are we likely to see more MMORPGs such as Black Desert Online, Skyforge, Tree of Savior, and others coming to Xbox One and PS4? Some developers state that they would consider their respective titles releasing on these platforms but must prioritize their PC version, others hear radio silence when they raise the question of whether console players would like to see their game on their home platforms.
Whether or not Neverwinter is the beginning of a trend of MMORPGs that will port over, its a satisfying alternative available to Xbox One and PS4 players, and something that could one day inspire further titles to accompany it. Some may argue that if it was going to, it would’ve done so by now. But whether Neverwinter could continue to grow its player base or not could determine if other game developers follow suit.
Are there any PC-based MMORPGs you’d like to see on console? Let us know in the comments section below.