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Template:More footnotesTemplate:Infobox video game Nevergrind is a browser-based RPG developed by Neverworks Games, a small browser game development company. Nevergrind was originally inspired by EverQuest, Progress Quest, and Diablo 2. In its earliest stages of development it was strictly an EverQuest fangame which used zones, monsters, lore, and items from classic EverQuest.
As the project evolved over the years, Nevergrind's developer, Joe Leonard, decided to change the direction of the game in order to monetize the game via a freemium business model and a Kickstarter campaign. The decision to monetize required a rewrite of the game's lore and reorganizing the game's design to accommodate the transition from an open world gameplay design to a linear gameplay design. Leonard contracted artists to draw original monsters, backgrounds, and UI elements to complete the re-design of the game.
The Kickstarter campaign was launched on March 18, 2015 with a goal to raise $4,000. The campaign managed to raise 129% of its original goal, reaching $5,189. The campaign was unorthodox in the sense that it funded the campaign first and then campaigned for funds upon completion. Funding in this manner was touted as "removing the risk to the backer" since the product was delivered regardless of whether its funding goal was met.
Since the website's original debut in September, 2012, the game's data was saved using browsers' local storage API. Throughout this time the game was available to play in a prolonged open beta phase. For the first time, the server account system was unveiled to the public on April 20, 2015. This allowed users to store their character data on the server instead of their local computer. Kickstarter backers were provided 3-day early access, which started on Friday, April 17.
The website includes a forum, a wiki, a blog, leaderboards, and a character profile page called the Nevergrounds.
Your story begins in the world of Vandamor at the city of Edenburg, a coastal city situated in western Ralance. Edenburg is under siege by a horde of orcs. Miranda Crossheart, commander of the Edenburg Recruit Detachment, instructs you on your first mission: eliminate the orc menace! Along your journey, additional clues reveal that a greater conspiracy lies beneath the recent chaos that has wrought ruin across Vandamor. All clues point toward Nalatos, the God of Chaos, pulling the strings behind much of the misery.
Nalatos can only be vanquished within Nimgaul, an alternate dimension normally beyond reach of mortals. You must gather the idols of chaos in order to open a dimensional portal to his homeland and vanquish him once and for all. This is no small task as his most powerful conscripts have been entrusted with these powerful artifacts.
Nevergrind's uses a real-time combat system along with skill buttons and a cooldown system familiar to many MMORPG games. Enemies appear by using an "Add Monster" button, which pulls additional monsters into combat. Key gameplay mechanics, such as horde bonus and chain combos, entice the player to invite additional risk for passive magic find and experience rewards. Horde bonus rewards you for fighting multiple mobs simultaneously and chain combos reward you for killing successive mobs without leaving combat.
A diverse selection of race and classes are available to the player. Twelve races and fourteen classes are available. Each race has a passive or active racial skill. Each class has a diverse skill selection which are unlocked as you level up. Each class may also select from twelve talents to further customize their class's abilities.
Two modes are offered: normal and hardcore mode. In normal mode you only lose experience and gold when you die, but in hardcore mode your death is permanent.
Monsters drop a wide assortment of equipment across fifteen different character slots. There are five types of item rarity: normal, magic, rare, unique, and set. There are also Legendary items, but these have only been received as a result of the Kickstarter campaign reward. In addition, the base items also vary based on quality: normal, exceptional, and elite versions of all base item types can be found.
There are more than 200 set items and 700 unique items in the game. Rare items also have the distinct benefit of having no level requirement, which makes them uniquely desirable for equipping new characters.
Nevergrind has always been designed with desktop/laptop gamers in mind. The dimensions of the game, 1280x720, accommodate easy HD recording in 720p for Let's Players on sites like YouTube. Nevergrind is notable for this reason as few, if any, browser games are designed with video recording in mind. Due to this it does not play well on tablets, cell phones, and other mobile devices, as the screen size and overall design is not designed with mobile devices in mind.
Nevergrind has maintained a relatively low profile, yet maintains a steady hardcore following over the years. It has a rating of 3.5 out of 5 with 900 votes on Kongregate. Nevergrind has a rating of 8.3/10 with 13 votes on Crazy Games. Nevergrind received a 10/10 with 3 votes at IndieDB.
Bonnie Burgette of Indie Game Magazine cited Nevergrind for venturing "off the beaten path" by developing a browser-based RPG without requiring any downloads, in spite of current trends to flood game services like itch.io and Steam's Greenlight. Greg Micek of the Cliqist, a crowdfunding gaming website, noted Nevergrind for its exceptional success via Kickstarter despite the fact that "browser based games don’t typically garner a lot of attention on Kickstarter."