So we spent some time this weekend in Neverwinter focused specifically on the bonus refinement points event. This offered the opportunity to upgrade artifacts faster so we spent a good amount of time hunting through our characters for spare enchantments, refinement gemstones (e.g. white pearls), and runestones that we could feed to our ever-hungry artifacts.
After some experimenting to see the effects of the bonus event it became clear that upgrading from green to blue was a realistic enough step-up. From blue to purple not so much. I used up well over a hundred enchantment and refinement stones from my four mid to high level characters. I managed to get one of my great weapon fighters artifacts from green to blue, my cleric’s third artifact also from green to blue and his primary artifact about 60% of the way from blue to purple. But the latter upgrade process absorbed vast amounts of stones for very slow progress despite the bonus event – that’s a level of grind beyond my casual engagement with the game.
As a side note we also wanted to get the third Tyranny of Dragons boon unlocked as that would allow my fighter and my partner’s cleric to do the class artifact quest – unlocking the relevant green quality artifact for free on all characters on the account. Getting that done by the end of Sunday was a goal so we could then immediately upgrade the shiny new artifacts to blue quality during the bonus event. But time and tide was against us, we were one set of dailies short of getting the boon and there is no way around those daily quest cooldown timers. Paying upwards of $35 to instantly and fully unlock one of the earlier campaigns from the Zen store was not an option either – it wasn’t that important.
In any case the artifact refining we did manage was a boost to character stats and most of my characters now benefit from half-empty banks and bags. In the end we gave up on hoarding the various call-to-arms enchantment stones, it is very easy just by doing the Tyranny dailies or Icewind Dale heroic encounters to get more of these.
Speaking of Icewind Dale our current thoughts are to finish the boon unlock on my fighter and his cleric and to then swap to a different pair to keep the game fresh. I’ll be back on my cleric with his newly levelled guardian fighter. I get to heal again and his fighter gets to stand and shrug off boss attacks with a big shield. We haven’t done any Icewind Dale together for some months so it’ll be nice to delve back into to that campaign as, despite the random number issues with loot, I did really like the setting and back story to the campaign.