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Undermountain Expeditions

Here’s a primer on M16 Undermountain Expeditions. There are two types of Expeditions:

Leveling Expeditions

  • Done during the campaign; used to advance the campaign and open new areas in Undermountain
  • Drop gear associated with leveling (green gear); gear comes from the campaign quests rather than boss drops (which happens in Master Expeditions)

Master Expeditions

  • Done once the Undermountain campaign has completed. You must complete the last task in the campaign tree to participate in Master Expeditions. Obaya Uday (the same NPC in the Yawing Portal that has been giving you the Leveling Expedition quests, gives you a quest called Master the Depths. This is your first Master Expedition. After you complete that quest, you can complete the campaign task and you receive the 3-times-a-day quest for Master Expeditions. You must turn in and renew each of the three Master Expeditions with Obaya Uday.
  • Drop purple gear that you will want to equip. This gear is like the Chultan gear that comes with equipment power like “Gain X Power for each ally in your team” but much, much higher in Item Level (around IL 850 – 909). The Alabaster weapon set comes from turning in the Master Expedition quest, but is gated behind RNG.
  • There’s more about attuning Runic Crystals below, but if you do not attune Runic Crystals in a Master Expedition, the chest at the end cannot be opened.

Common Expedition Elements

  • All Expeditions seek to collect 9 pieces of magic relics in 3 areas
  • Boss fights in Expeditions drop the new Seals, which allow you to buy gear in the Yawning Portal
  • Boss fights can drop gear (including weapons) in Master Expeditions. Leveling Expeditions do not drop gear. Gear comes from turning in quests during Leveling Expeditions
  • You can initiate 3 Master Expeditions a day, but can be in a party supporting a group for more than 3. If you have the Master Expedition quest (one of your three daily quests), you can open the chest at the end. If you are just supporting the Master Expedition, you can still get drops from boss battles.

Expedition Mechanics

Master Expeditions are akin to Hunts in Barovia. You can use Crystallized Resonance (think of those like Tarokka Cards) to attune Runic Crystals (think of the three slots Madam Eva gives you during Barovian Hunts) to increase the difficulty and reward of the expedition.


Resonance is the “building block” of attuning crystals for Master Expeditions. Resonance can be obtained running Runic Encounters (RE) (think about these like Heroic Encounters) in Undermountain. Runic Encounters that spawn in Undermountain drop all types of Resonance. In order to collect Resonance for the first time, you must complete the quest from Runemaster Sinye in the Yawning Portal called Boundless Runic Corruption. During that quest, you will collect three types of each Resonance type and an unrestored piece of Artifact gear that you will need to turn back in to Runemaster Sinye to complete the quest after you restore the Artifact gear with the Resonance you just collected.

Resonance is also used in the process to restore Apprentice gear. If you don’t want to grind all the Resonance to restore the Apprentice gear, the gear that drops from the bosses in Master Expeditions (or from an attuned Master Expedition chest) is more than adequate.

If you’re level 80, and you’ve completed the Boundless Runic Corruption quest mentioned above, to acquire Resonance simply enter the Runic Encounter (you will see the area underneath a transparent half circle dome inscribed with Runic symbols) and as you fight and kill enemies, Resonance will drop into your inventory. Resonance comes in five forms: Chaos, Balance, Empowered, Rage, Sacrifice. You need 10 Resonance of the same type to create Crystalized Resonance to attune Runic Crystals in a Master Expedition.

Attuning Runic Crystals is a two step process which can only be done in the first chamber after entering the Master Expedition. First, you sacrifice 10 Resonance to create the Crystalized Resonance (menu item #2), then you use the Crystalized Resonance (menu item #1) to attune up to three Runic Crystals. You must interact with each pedestal in the chamber individually to attune more than one crystal.

When you attune Runic Crystals, which can only be done by the party leader (just like Tarokka cards with Madam Eva), the challenge of all creatures increases on the Expedition (think about the Tarokka cards that increased enemy stats to Epic dungeon stats, like the Donjon High Card) and Runes will appear in the Expedition that have negative effects when any player walks into the space where they are hidden. The effect may give you a damage over time effect, or slow you, etc. but you will see a message on screen that the runic energy has been triggered. Each runic energy cannot be triggered a second time but there are multiple in a Master Expedition run.

When you attune Runic Crystals, you have a chance to gain Rune Etchings (see below) from Master Expeditions in the final chest.

Each of the Crystalized Resonance (as a reminder, that’s 10 Resonance) add the following rewards when used to attune Runic Crystals (just like the bonuses from the Tarokka Cards):

  • Chaos: 3000 Astral Diamonds
  • Balance: 8 Gold
  • Empowered: 1 piece of equipment, not guaranteed to be useable by your class
  • Rage: 1 piece of equipment, guaranteed to be for your class
  • Sacrifice: 4500 Refinement Points

Rune Etchings

After attuning the Runic Crystals and successfully completing the Master Expedition, you have a chance to acquire one of four Rune Etchings from the last chest in Master Expeditions. Dark, Pulsing, Swirling and Glowing Runic Etchings can be used for two things:
1. To buy Rune-Etched Orbs used in restoring the Apprentice gear (IL 965) – this is much like how we restored gear in Mod 10, Storm Kings Thunder, versus using the Ampules from CoDG in Module 12/13 Chult/Omu.
2. To purchase a chest from the vendor in the Yawning Portal with Level 80 Artifact equipment – this is much like the chests you gained from using Tarokka cards in Barovian Hunts that gave gear. These chests can contain the Mod 16 artifacts, vanity pets, AD and potions.

As a final note, restoring gear also requires Runic Energy Sealers, which each cost 100,000 AD. These can be purchased from the same vendor where you purchase Rune-Etched Orbs in the Yawning Portal, Runemaster Sinye.

Good hunting on your Runic Encounters! Hopefully you’ll get great gear and if you’re really lucky, new weapons!

Mod 16 is as easy as 1, 2, 3…

When you log into Neverwinter for the first time after Module 16, Undermountain, goes live, your see a message that says “Your Powers have been reset”, and there’s lots of gear that was formerly on your companion in your inventory, among other things. You might be thinking, “What is going on and what do I do now?”

Mod 16 Day 1 Guide

  1. Rework your character (Abilities, Powers, Feats, Boons) due to the forced respect
    • here’s additional information on ability scores. They are not the same as pre-Mod 16.
    • For convenience, here are the links to the Day 1 builds that cover Powers and Feats:
    • Don’t fret too much about this respec; you’ll probably respec again after you experience gameplay at level 80 and define your new playstyle
    • If you want, focus on your solo play loadout for now since that will be what you use to level to 80

2. Check your companion for unequipped gear

  • gear for players, and enchantments, can no longer be used by companions and gets unequipped automatically
  • don’t worry about getting some companion gear if you don’t have any as the new gear you get from the intro quest starting the campaign includes blue level companion gear. Runestones are not included.
  • assign companion powers from those currently available; you don’t need to get any new companions before you hit level 80
  • check out our companion starter for more information

3. Start the Undermountain campaign

  • speak to Lord Neverember in the Moonstone Mask. You may see the quest automatically in your quest log or you may need to read the invitation on the table behind Sgt. Knox in PE.
  • Lord Neverember will give you new gear in the Moonstone Mask; equip that gear as needed

4. Work up to Level 80

After Day 1/At Level 80

  • Respec based on preferred playstyle; analyze loadouts for solo and party play
  • Continue Undermountain campaign to get level 80 character and companion gear
  • Analyze your stats for balance; check out our starter on targeted stats
  • Create plan to upgrade runestones, mount insignias, enchantments based on your analysis of the stats
  • Analyze companion strategy and powers;
    • are there better companion powers you don’t already have?
    • How do you use companions? For example, augment companions have proven to be good for team play, while combat companions have been good for solo play
    • get new companions to implement your strategy

Basic Build for Warlock Mod 16 + Level 80 Build

Latest Build Information

Basic Build Notes: These guides are not meant to be comprehensive “bibles” on how you must build your class, but offer solid alternatives to get started in the new mod. Each of these builds should offer a solid foundation for you to start playing the new mod, but do not necessarily represent “BiS”, as that can depend on your prefered playstyle, gear, and stats.

Warlock Notes: For level 80 Warlock build information, make sure you check out Lord Willow’s new Warlock build video. For Hellbringer leveling, use the Level 80 Build Hellbringer information screenshotted below and discussed in the Warlock build video.

Soulweaver Warlock Heals

Level 80 Build

DPS Warlock build

For information on the principles behind the build, plus information on gear (the Lostmauth set plays a big role), boon and companion information, make sure you check out the video by Lord Willow.

Soulweaver heals Warlock build

Basic Barbarian Build for Mod 16 Preview (archived)

As of the writing of this blog, the tank path for the Barbarian, the Sentinel, will be undergoing changes in the next patch. Therefore our coverage of the Sentinel will come at a later time.

The following selections are for the DPS path for the Barbarian, the Blademaster.

The idea behind the basic build is to build rage as quickly as possible and then to use your encounters while raging.

Basic Build Choices as of March 10th, 2019

At Wills: Sure Strike and Brash Strike
Encounters: Punishing Charge, Frenzy and Axestorm
Dailies: Savage Advance, Crescendo
Class Features: Steadfast Determination, Steel Blitz
Feats: Mighty Blade, Rampage, Steel Reaper, Overpenetration, Offensive Recovery

Thanks to Lord Willow for contributing information for the entry.

Basic Wizard Build for M16 Preview (archived)

Note, this is taken, almost entirely from Sharpedge, so….  credit where credit is due here.  This is based on the current build and may not be valid once this hits Live as there are bugs to be fixed.

Single Target Arcanist:

  • Entangling Force on Mastery
  • Ray of Enfeeblement
  • Disintegrate
  • Imprisonment
  • Passive: Storm Spell
  • Passive: Arcane Power Field
  • At-will: Magic Missile
  • Daily: Arcane Empowerment

Start with Imprisonment then Arcane Empowerment, Ray of Enfeeblement, Entangling Force, then Disintegrate. Try to cycle encounters as quickly as possible, then use Magic Missiles when they are off cool-down.

Area of Effect Thaumaturge:

  • Entangling Force on Mastery
  • Fanning the Flame
  • Icy Terrain
  • Conduit of Ice
  • Passive: Critical Conflagration
  • Passive: Evocation
  • At-will:Chilling Cloud
  • At-will:Oppressive Force
  • Daily: Furious Immolation

Most of the damage from this build comes from smolder, The goal is to trigger Critical Conflagration as much as possible. The order you use powers in is not so important, so long as you group as many enemies together as possible and play aggressively. The more enemies you pull, the more damage you will deal.

Single Target Feats:

  • Spell Twisting
  • Assailing Force
  • Chaos Magic
  • Striking Advantage
  • A Step above Mastery

Area of Effect Feats:

  • Smoldering Recovery
  • Glowing Flames
  • Shatter Strike
  • Critical Burn
  • Directed Flames

5 Known Bugs (as if this writing):

  • Elemental Reinforcement only working on the first hit.
  • Storm Pillar dealing excessive damage.
  • Chaos Magic – Quick Action giving half of the intended action points.
  • Striking Advantage does not scale.
  • Directed Flames deals 50%, not 75%.
  • Empowering Flames does not function.

**Mod 16 is still being tested and subject to change at any given moment


Basic Rogue Build M16 Preview (archived)

Single Target Assassin:

  • Lashing Blade
  • Assassinate
  • Deft Strike
  • Oppressive Darkness
  • Tactics
  • Duelist’s Flurry
  • Gloaming Cut
  • Shocking Execution

Whenever you use stealth, you want to use it to buff Lashing Blade. The rotation with this build is to wait for Skullcracker to trigger, then use Deft Strike, Stealth, Shocking Execution, a few Gloaming Cuts until stealth is almost depleted, then Lashing Blade and Assassinate. When your encounters are on cool-down, simply hold down Duelist’s Flurry.

Area of Effect Whisperknife:

  • Smoke Bomb
  • Blitz
  • Path of the Blade
  • Tactics
  • Razor Action
  • Whirlwind of Blades

Use stealth on Blitz, in order to lower cooldowns. As a result of this it is usually the last power used. Path of the Blade, Smoke Bomb, Stealth, Blitz, then at wills when your powers are on cool-down.

Single Target Feats:

  • Assassin’s Target
  • Knife’s Edge
  • Skullcracker
  • Hastily Sharpened Blades
  • Shadow’s Flurry

Area of Effect Feats:

  • Shady Preparations
  • Dark Reimbursement
  • Shadow of Demise
  • Shadowy Opportunity
  • Last Moments

Known Bugs:

  • Duelist’s Flurry Bleed does not deal damage if you hit enemies who are on a different level of terrain elevation to you.
  • The hit that triggers Shadow of Demise counts 50%, not 30%.
  • Shadow of Demise double benefits from debuffs.
  • Shadow of Demise counts damage dealt to all enemies, to the single enemy.
  • Back Alley Tactics significantly reduces your damage, as it is not capped to the domain and thus leads you to deal on average 40% less damage.
  • Knife’s Edge triggers per target hit, for example, it reduces your cool-downs by 20 seconds if it triggers off of 5 targets hit by Whirlwind of Blades.
  • Knife’s Edge does not trigger on Bloodbath.

**Mod 16 is still being tested and subject to change at any given moment

Basic Ranger Build for M16 Preview (archived)

Hunter was tested by @viraaal, not me, so if you wish to field any questions for this class, direct them at him, including if you should live stream Owlbear before your NDA has ended.  🙂

Single Target Hunter:

  • Longstrider’s Shot
  • Marauders Escape
  • Commanders Shot
  • Rapid Shot
  • Careful attack
  • Disruptive shot
  • Aspect of the Falcon
  • Aspect of the Pack

The rotation is Disruptive shot, Longstrider’s Shot, Gushing Wound, Marauders Escape (while jumping to remove the movement effect but keep the damage), Marauders Rush, Commanders Shot, Disruptive shot, Careful attack, Rapid Shot until Longstrider’s Shot is 1s off cool-down, and then repeat animation cancelling Disruptive shot with Longstrider’s Shot

Area of Effect Warden:

  • Throw Caution
  • Boar Charge
  • Marauders Rush
  • Storm Strike
  • Clear the ground
  • Snipe
  • Seeker’s Vengeance
  • Aspect of the Pack

The rotation is Split the Sky, Marauders Rush, 4 at-wills, Throw Caution, 4 at-wills, Boar Charge, Snipe, 2 at-wills. Repeat with Marauders Rush and using Split the Sky only at the start of a new rotation when its off cool-down (the at will you use depends on either single target or Area of Effect).

Single Target Feats:

  • Commander in Chief
  • Stillness of the Forest
  • Predator
  • Longshot
  • More than Disruptive

Area of Effect Feats:

  • Focused
  • Storms Recovery
  • Blade Hurricane
  • To the Wind
  • Enhanced Conductivity

**Mod 16 is still being tested and subject to change at any given moment

Basic Paladin Build for M16 Preview (archived)

This was written by @greyjay1 as he tested OP, so if you have any questions, I recommend fielding them his way.

Solo (Oathkeeper):

  • Valorous Strike
  • Radiant Strike
  • Smite
  • Sacred Weapon
  • Circle of Power (optional)
  • Divine Judgement
  • Justicar’s Charge
  • Composure
  • Divine Justice

Smite all the way, Sacred Weapon + Radiant Strike for AoE, Circle of Power to regain Divinity.


  • Shielding Strike (Oath Strike for AoE)
  • Radiant Strike
  • Smite (Templar’s Wrath for AoE)
  • Sacred Weapon
  • Absolution
  • Divine Justice
  • Divine Shieldberer

Smite (TW) all the way, Sacred Weapon + Oath Strike for AoE, block to regain Divinity.


  • Cure Wounds (rarely used)
  • Radiant Strike (or Divine Fulmination)
  • Divine Touch
  • Divine Shelter
  • Circle of Power
  • Lay on Hands
  • Healing Font

Divine Touch as standard Power, Divine Shelter to counter pressure and after the Feat procced, CoP for +healing and +Divinity, Healing Font as HoT.

Solo Feats:

  • Free Blessing
  • Divine Weapon
  • Keeper’s Wrath
  • Guarded Prayers
  • Radiant Banner

Keeper’s Wrath is the important Feat here.

Tanking Feats:

  • Sacred Shield
  • Absolute Shield
  • Bound to the Land
  • Vigilant Defender
  • Bulwark of Faith

Tanking Feats are not so important
Healing Feats:

  • Free Blessing
  • Divine Weapon
  • Lasting Bond
  • Guarded Prayers
  • Intervening Light

Free Blessing is the important Feat here.

**Mod 16 is still being tested and subject to change at any given moment

Basic Cleric Build for M16 Preview (archived)

The healing path is still in flux (see note at the end of this article), so for now here’s the DPS path:

Single Target Arbiter:

  • Bastion of Health
  • Prophecy of Doom
  • Forgemaster’s Flame
  • Lance of Faith
  • Sacred Flame
  • Hammer of Fate
  • Light of the Scales
  • Holy Fervor

This rotation is a little bit strange compared to what you would usually be used to for DPS. The feat Mendicant’s Judgement will build stacks of Judgement, which you will use to refresh divinity. You start by using 6 Sacred Flames, then you cast Prophecy of Doom, Hammer of Fate, then Forgehamer’s Flame, then 6 Sacred Flames, then Forgemaster’s Flame. Repeat whenever you have divinity to use Forgemaster’s Flame. When you are out of divinity, use Bastion and target the most allies possible, then briefly channel divinity to consume all stacks. Repeat until full on divinity, then start the rotation again.

Area of Effect Arbiter:

  • Bastion of Health
  • Sunburst
  • Searing Light
  • Lance of Faith
  • Sacred Flame
  • Celestial Prominence
  • Light of the Scales
  • Holy Fervor

The rotation is similar to the one for Arbiter, but instead of using Prophecy you use Sunburst and instead of Forgemaster’s you use Searing Light.

Feats (Both):

  • Piercing Light
  • Heavy Sun
  • Mendicant’s Judgement
  • Smoldering Light
  • Critical Sun

**Mod 16 is still being tested and subject to change at any given moment

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