May 2020, pre-orders available now.
First off, the blurb.
Legend has led generations of explorers to the supernatural frontier known as Aeternum. Rich in a powerful substance known as Azoth, which many believe to be the source of eternal life, Aeternum has beckoned both the pure of heart and the wicked to its shores.
These intrepid individuals are harried at every turn by a malevolent force, humanoid creatures warped and twisted by a malignant element known as the Corruption. The Corruption, as its name suggests, corrupts life it comes into contact with to varying degrees, based on exposure and the constitution of the host. Some are left as bestial husks, while others are elevated to power unimaginable.
When not facing down the Corrupted, explorers are beset upon by rival companies of humans who are just as eager to conquer and exploit Aeternum. Life in New World is a harsh contest of survival, and only the brave and cunning can hope to fight back the spreading darkness.Or in short:
New World is a new game being developed by Amazon Game Studios. They bill it as a survival action MMO that takes place in, by all accounts, an absurdly large game world. This world was hand crafted and features a wide variety of biomes. From your standard woods, plains, mountains to more exotic stuff like mind-trippy neon murder forests. To the best of my knowledge they've not stated how big the world is, but the Devs claim it can rather comfortably hold a thousand players (with no zones or loading screens).Wait, isn't this that game that had some rather uncomfortable tones of Colonialism?
Yes, you are correct. Thankfully the Devs took the criticism to heart as it certainly wasn't their intent. Now the game world has no indigenous people. Everyone who is in Aeternum came there to obtain the power hidden within. So you don't need to feel any guilt over killing any of the NPCs. They also redesigned the armor and outfits from being 17th century colonial facsimiles to more 17th century fantasy. Think Bloodborne. Crazy armor, fantasy outfits, tricornes etc.So what do you do in the game?
Excellent question! One that I will have to break down in to parts.Crafting!
Everything in the game is made by players. Weapons, armor, outfits, tool, food, etc etc etc.
There are multiple crafting trees that players can specialize in. Everything from Blacksmithing to Wood Working to more esoteric arts. As with everything else in the game, the more you do the more your skill improves allowing you to unlock new things. Crafting is of vital importance.
Azoth is the magic stuff found in Aeternum and can be used to imbue power to weapons and armor. However, this stuff is unpredictable and the player cannot control what happens. In effect it will make something statistically better, but come with some sort of weird penalty. ie: "This Azoth empowered gun now does 3x the damage, but it also drains the users HP every time they fire it" or "this shield will never break, but the user will be temporarily blinded each time they successfully block." Just as hypothetical examples.
Of course you can't have crafting without gathering and New World ain't no slouch here. Every tree and rock is a resource. All the plants and animals too. Along with rarer. . . darker things.Combat!
The land is a very dangerous place. Eldritch horrors, The Corrupted, infected animals, cultists and other explorers are all not very interested in having a polite discourse. The combat is action based and was inspired by Dark Souls. It isn't as hardcore as Dark Souls though. The Devs want it to be accessible, but still feel like your personal skill matters. From those who have gotten to try out the game it sounds like they succeeded on this front. Dodging, blocking, parrying are all in and everything you do consumes Stamina. However the Stamina system is fairly forgiving as the Devs want to minimize down time. So when you run out of Stamina if you're able to duck out of a fight it'll take but a moment to regain your Stamina. If not, then you're in for a bad time.
PvP is a thing too, but it is opt-in. If you don't want to take part you don't have to. Players are on a somewhat even playing field when it comes to PvP. Fancy equipment helps, but skill is often the deciding factor. Getting a solid hit in with a big (but slow) weapon can wipe out half a player's HP. Duels between two rather skilled players can actually take a bit of time as each tries to create an opening. Once they do though things end pretty quick. Even if you die it sounds like you merely respawn somewhere and don't lose anything.
There are a number of different Weapon Types that you can choose to specialize in and many of these Weapon Types have multiple trees to spec in to. One example given was the humble Hatchet. You could specialize in becoming a blender on two legs or go down the ranged tree and learn new and interesting ways to chuck hatchets at people. The Devs want a player's choice in weapons/armor to be one of personal preference. Very much like Dark Souls each weapon type has its own animations and fighting styles. Magic is also an option.Companies and Territory Control!
Guilds in New World are called Companies. Companies can claim territory and build a settlement. Settlements can't be built just anywhere, there are specific locations in which a settlement can be built. A Company that does start building a settlement needs to decide how they want to specialize the town. Either Trade, Crafting or War. Each specialization comes with its own perks and special buildings. What these are I can't say at the moment, but it is supposed to be an important decision. The Company will set the tax rate for the territory and crafting fees as well.
Companies have a player cap of 50. This seems surprisingly low considering and that's the point. Town PvP sieges are fixed at 50v50. The Devs don't want blobs forming and steamrolling people.
If you don't like joining guilds or perhaps you're not in a Company that controls territory don't fret! People can build their own homes in territory that is controlled by a Company they are not a part of. The Company in charge can't destroy your home or anything like that. In fact the Company needs
lots of non-Company players living in their territory. These people pay the taxes and crafting fees. They provide the mountain of resources the Company needs. They help tame the surrounding wilderness and can chase off ne'er-do-wells. All told it is expected that the amount of non-Company people in a territory would likely be 2 or 3 times the number of players that are actually in the Company. So treat these people well or they may unite and form their own Company to challenge your rule in a People's Revolt!
The territories themselves do not have access to all the resources a town would need. So Companies will have to import from other towns. However a Company can control as much territory as they want, assuming they can defend it all.Town Sieges!
As I mentioned Town sieges are a thing. A Company looking to take control of a territory can buy (at no small expense) a Declaration of War and issue it to a Company that controls a settlement. The Defenders will have 24 hours to get their things in order before the siege begins. The sieges themselves are 50v50. Attackers need to breach the walls and destroy a rune-stone-thing. Defenders just need to run out the clock or kill enough of the enemy that they run out of respawns.
But what if you can't get all fifty of your Company members online for the fight? Well, this is were not being a dick comes in handy. You can supplement your forces with volunteers from the non-Company players living in your territory. As long as they feel like your Company is a better fit to be in charge you shouldn't have problems getting the soldiers you need.
However, if your taxes and crafting fees are rather high then the non-Company players may support the Attackers. Either by supplementing their forces or simply by providing material support.
What if you hate PvP, but still want to take part in a siege? Well the game has you covered! There is an army of the Corrupted (undead basically) that will occasionally siege a player town. Just like with the PvP siege, players will have advance notice. These towns will get attacked by a horde of undead "in the hundreds" so there will be plenty of work for all players!PvE Stuff!
Originally the Devs weren't planning on having quests or a story or anything like that. Just random mobs. They have changed their minds on this. The game will have quests and a continuing story. Dungeons, caves full of danger and other mysteries are also waiting to be uncovered.Random Stuff!
The game is classless. Players have access to a lot of different skill trees to flesh out their character. From crafting to fighting to more specialized things like Treasure Hunting and Bounty Hunting.
No P2W, but there will be a cosmetics shop.
The game is B2P.
Exploration in general is a pretty big part of the game.My take on it.
I won't lie, I'm kind of excited for this. I actually enjoy those multiplayer survival games. However in this case instead of being an Early Access game that doesn't really go anywhere your looking at a studio with a big ass budget and serious talent behind it. I mean you can just build your house in peace and not have to worry about it getting destroyed when you log off. Or you can take part in Winner Takes All PvP sieges if you've a hankering for it. Hell, if you still want to have those crazy cool moments you can even take part in PvE sieges!
I don't really ever get to say this often (or ever), but I actually have an inside source on this one. The Devs working on it are in a rather unusual, but nice, position of not having to push a game out to meet some quarterly demand. The game isn't going to make or break Amazon. Amazon is more concerned about them making the best damn impression that they can with their first game. So I guess the Devs have been given a far bit of leeway to make sure they get it right. To that end they've spent time looking at other survival games and PvP MMOs to find what people like, don't like and what people would love to see in an effort to fix, add or improve upon those things. Basically the ol' Blizzard Method.
A Capellan's favorite sheath for any blade is your back.