Rewards, a Work in Progress

After the gigantic backlash of the Dungeon Key Changes the Lead Designer Mimic King issued a statement that there will no change in the key system without appropriate change of the attached rewards. Like I said in my last piece I’d like to follow up with throwing my own suggestion into the ring. So here we go!

What do we currently get?

What kind of reward can be considered good in exchange for a key? To answer the question we must look into the current loot and its worth. This question can be answered relatively easy. From the additional chest we always get a couple of randomized refinement items, one Rank 5 Enchantment and one salvageable piece of gear. I would estimate the worth of that loot to about 6,000 AD. The legendary dragon key however costs 30,000 AD. We only get a small percentage of the worth of the key out of the chest. Of course there can be more valuable items like Artifacts, but the drop rate is so low that constantly spending a key is pointless.

LostmauthBut we calculate it anyway to give you an idea… the Lostmauth Artifact has probably a droprate from about 0.75% in one chest. 3×0.75%= 2.25% for the whole dungeon (Boss Drop, Epic Chest, Additional Chest). That means we need to run the Dungeon about 40-50 times to get one Artifact, which actually matches my personal experience. Only every 120 to 150 run it can be found in the additional chest. With the new system in place we would spend about 3,600,000 to 4,500,000 AD for an item that is only worth 400,000 to 500,000 AD. Not very cost efficient. So even rare drops are, like almost everyone in the community knows, not that great if we consider the investment.

What can be in the additional chest?

The key should have the chance for a full return of investment and even more. I mean where is the point using a key that is not worth the initial investment? And where’s the point even selling this key in the ingame store? If the loot within the chest is increased it will also have an effect on the overall market. More drops will equal to less value. It is very easy possible that the key will lose its return of investment over time again. But considering that we basically get less out of dungeon runs than out of Utility Enchantments, something must be done.

Enchantment Shards

We currently can get only very few Enchantment Shards outside the Seal Shop. To give each dungeon a primary Weapon and Armor Enchantment shard that is guaranteed in the chest should be okay. Why Weapon or Armor Enchantment Shard? I personally know a lot players that use them to refine their Weapon or Armor Enchantments with. Also it adds a base value to the Legendary Dragon Key of about 300-600 AD.

Lesser Armor or Weapon Enchantment

They should drop in the same chest but instead of the respective shard. The drop rate should be fairly low because the value of a Lesser Enchantment can be up to 500,000 AD. We can basically try and calculate the supposed drop rate with the worth of the Enchantment and the key. For better calculation we take the max worth of 500,000 AD and 30,000 AD per key. That would set the droprate for a Lesser Enchantment at around 6%. You should get one every 16-17 runs. That way you will always get your key value back over time.

The Enchantment is not the only thing in the chest however and we also have to adjust for the fact that players can generate campaign keys and blaze through dungeons like a fat person through a twinkie. So I personally would recommend a drop rate of about 2% for the Lesser Enchantment.

That way players can look up the dungeon for their desired Enchantment and start grinding the dungeon. Especially newer players have a good chance to get a hand on a Lesser Enchantment, because it lowers the entry costs for Armor and Weapon Enchantments in general.


Very few player know this but the regular dungeon chest has a very little chance to grant one of the starting Artifacts as loot (Lantern of Revelation, Aurora’s Book and the Water of Elah’zad). The drop rate is so low that I got two or three since the release of Module 2 when the loot was implemented. I run dungeons constantly and open the Epic Chest every time. The drop rate for fairly common artifacts is way lower than for rare ones like Lostmauth or Orcus.

The starting Artifacts are currently 100,000 to 200,000 AD. Applying our logic from above it would mean a drop rate of 14% or one Artifact every 6-7 runs. That is clearly to high. A drop rate of 4% should be sufficient. I would also shift the Artifacts to the Legendary Dragon Chest to further increase the value of the key. This would also help to rank up primary Artifacts, because the base ones are often used as feeders.

Refinement Points

Currently we get only about 10,000 RP out of the additional chest. That’s not enough. We need 41,878,540 RP for regular Artifacts and 18,580,800 RP for Artifact Equipment (60,459,340 RP in total).

I agree mythic and legendary items should be rare or hard to obtain. But the refinement points in the additional chest only give us 0,017% of total progression. That would mean we need to open over 5,882 chests to fully rank up.

Of course the Auction House, drops from Utility Enchantments and the Leadership profession add to the daily RP. Double event also make life considerably easier. But even considering the other methods to gain refinement points the drop is not good enough. In the end you gain more RPs from other methods than dungeon runs. That’s why I think the gain from the chest should be doubled or trippled at least.

That would ensure players get a decent value for the legendary dragon key. 30,000 RP are about 24,000 AD. The refinement points should be always unbound and a mix of Peridot, Aquamarine, Flawless Sapphire and Black Opal. If people buy keys, they deserve refinement points that can be used universally and aren’t limited to one type.

What else is left?

What about Marks? I mean refinement points are only one part of the upgrade process? The only real option to get Marks is through the daily Dread Ring Lair. Add these to the Legendary Dragon Key as well. Green ones are always guaranteed. And by that I mean every single one of them. Stability, Union, Power and Potency.

Then each of them have chance of 16% to upgrade to a blue Mark. Union, Power and Stability have a 4 % chance to become purple, Potency has a 3% chance to turn into a Greater and a 1% chance to turn into Superior.

How much would be the worth of the NEW legendary dragon key?

Considering all new drops from above the worth would be 47,840 AD on average (including 30,000 RP). It varies based on the type of Marks that drop and if you luck out on a Lesser Enchantment or Artifact. But on an average you get a nice net plus of 17,840 AD per run. At worst you can expect 26,400 AD. Considering that more rewards lead to dropping market prices these numbers are likely to fall. But since the progression stays the same it’s a favorable rework for both the players and Cryptic. I would also distinct between bought keys and campaign ones in making the drops from campaign keys bound to account.

Drop from bosses

Give bosses guaranteed loot! Nothing is more frustrating than running a dungeon or a skirmish and nothing drops. Currently most bosses only have a chance at a Peridot, Aquamarine or a piece of Salvage. In normal dungeons that equals to 1,500 RP and 3,000 AD max. In Castle Never you get more RPs that are limited to Artifact Equipment (3,000 to 6,000 RP) and epic salvageable gear that is worth 4,000 to 6,000 AD.

That should be completely changed. Guarantee refinement drops and a low chance for an additional salvageable gear item (appropriate for the tier of the dungeon). Standard reward is a random Minor Refinement Stone (Power, Stability, Union, Thaumaturgic and Resonance). To get an Lesser Refinement Stone instead of the minor is a 10% chance and to get a Normal Refinement Stone a 3% chance.

The additional salvageable gear item should drop at a rate of 5-10%. I personally would suggest 5% for dungeons (because three different bosses means three times rolling the dice on 5%) and 10% for skirmishes (way shorter but also only one boss).

Don’t forget the dungeon chest!

Neverwinter End ChestOur last source of loot in a dungeon or skirmish is the epic chest that can only be opened with the daily chest key, which costs about 5,000 AD in the Bazaar or is included in VIP subscription. While our additional chest offers static return of different variety, the rewards of the dungeon chest should scales with the tier of the dungeon.

But how much stuff should be in it? I think one salvageable gear, a Minor Refinement Stone and Rank 5 Enchantment. That would set the worth of the dungeon chest in tier 1 content to about 3,500 AD. In tier 2 content you would get a better salvageable gear item, a random Rank 6 Enchantment and each one of the Lesser Refinement Stones. That would set the worth of a dungeon chest to about 9,500 AD. Loot in tier 3 content or in CN should be also increased. I’d say two Lesser Refinement Stones and a guaranteed Rank 7 with a 10% chance for a Rank 8. This would set the worth to about 13,020 AD.

Through all tiers of dungeons the chest averages to about 8,000 AD. Depending on the type of the key used, the bind status should vary. Free and VIP key should generate bound loot, bought ones unbound. VIP keys do still add more value to the VIP service itself and make it more attractive for the community. I’d be hesitant to go account bound for the loot, because that opens up all kinds of problems with botters, exploiters, etc. abusing the VIP system. No one needs this. The bought epic dungeon key generates unbound loot because it has to cover the initial cost. T1 dungeons are fairly easy but the key costs more then you get out of it. T2 dungeons grant more and net a minor net plus. T3 content is currently the most difficult one and should reward accordingly.

That is my purposed rework. Have fun! In case you have any questions or remarks, share them in the comments below or visit the corresponding thread on our message board.

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