I’ve dipped a bit deeper into Neverwinter’s crafting system now. There are some similarities to SWTORs companion crafting, but the big difference is that in Neverwinter you hire dedicated crafting professionals. These professionals are each tied to a crafting skill; e.g. a prospector for metalsmithing or a mercenary for leadership.
At first you only have one task ‘slot’, like only being able to send one of your companions at a time in SWTOR when low-level. I’ve just recently opened up my second task slot so can now do two things at once, having hired a second prospector of course.
Most tasks take a 2-20 minutes it seems, at this level, so you can happily give orders to your crafter(s) while you carry on with the important job of saving the city and slaying evil. However there are also very long ‘mass crafting’ tasks, the first one you get as a metalsmith takes 6 hours! That’s the thing to set going before you log off for the night. So far I’ve managed to make a mail shirt and mail leggings (should be called chausses, mail pants sounds so silly to a Brit!). Items for these slots do not seem to drop as random loot so there is a clear need for you to craft at least some armour for your character, or to buy the same from the auction house.
Of course there is also the Neverwinter Gateway. This very slick website allows you to do some remote things with your characters, such as auction monitoring or crafting. It’s similar to the longstanding WoW Armoury application, but slightly more interactive. The crafting feature is an interesting innovation, although it could become addictive for some, and I would say is edging on “needy MMO” territory.