There are few new tricks in role playing games, the question is how can you take that old trope and make it fresh? CSI: Neverwinter takes the heroes from another place/time trope and does its own wild spin on things. CSI: Neverwinter begins with beat cop, an undercover cop, and a DA who get taken across the dimensional divide between Earth and Toril. They are given new bodies in order work at the direction of a shady “other” power and try to stop crime and be heroes along the way.
DM Scott Bignhefte is crafty, zany, occasionally vulgar, but most of all original and clearly enjoys DM’ing. This is not some feel-good processing of emotions or a quasi-parable of the problems of modern America, it is a fun and irreverent band of out-of-plane adventurers behaving in the ways players with heroic superpowers actually behave. They don’t always follow the plot clearly laid out for them, they act in ways that are a bit darker than you might want heroes to, but you can see the whole time the DM working to direct the story. Kudos, Scott.
Now into its second season, the players are GM are definitely better at the rules of D&D. It does start out rough, as can be expected in an actual play that contains people playing a game that has as much history and mechanics as D&D for the first time, or the first time in a long time. Not only that, but the sound quality is a bit poor at first, but is notably better later on in season 1. So keep listening if those things are what bother you in the first episode or two.
The plot is fun, with mystery and hijinks—and complete absurdity. While CSI: Neverwinter may sound like a more serious series, it occasionally veers into Scooby-Doo level antics—just with more violence…. a lot more violence. The NPC’s are as zany as the players, and Droop the Goblin is priceless as the “secretary” for our CSI team. I shouldn’t love Droop, but I do.
So, if you’re looking for crime-solving antics with a bit of the weird and extra-dimensional taking place in a familiar location in the Forgotten Realms, this fun D&D Actual Play is well worth checking out!
½-1½ hour recording length.
NSFW, Explicit tag in iTunes.
Photo from the podcast feed for CSI: Neverwinter and all rights reside with the original creator.