Update 8:05 AM EST: A Twitter post for New World has announced that all the regions have gone live. In addition, in order to help mitigate the lengthy queue times, the team is adding new servers in North America and Australia as well as expanding the capacity of pre-existing servers. Meanwhile, players have been given the ability to relocate their characters for free for the next two weeks.
The original story follows below
It's launch day for New World, Amazon's latest attempt to break into the video game market, and early numbers show plenty of interest in the game. As of writing, the game has broken half a million concurrent players as servers open up and player limits are relaxed.
New World's launch has been anticipated for a while now. As Amazon's biggest title to date, there's been plenty of debate as to whether this game can defy its predecessor's failures. We've seen negotiation breakdowns cancel a Lord of the Rings game, Breakaway was canceled mid-development, and Crucible wound up releasing to mixed reviews before being pulled back into beta and eventually canceled. However, the early numbers for the launch of New World seem promising, with the number of players reaching half a million at the time of writing (according to SteamDB,) and that number is only poised to grow.
What's wrong with New World's queues and servers?
Like many MMORPGs on launch day, New World is having some issues with its servers and wait times for getting into the game. Each server is very limiting in how many players it lets on, with one Reddit user posting a picture of servers with a 2,000 player cap, with thousands of players queing. It's worth noting that this number is higher than the 1,000 listed in the FAQ.
These line-ups to play were pretty bad when the Europe servers first launched and they haven't improved with the American servers going online. There is growing discontent with players in regards to the queue time, with the number of negative reviews increasing notably as we were writing this story, with most of them citing the queue (and even some of the positive ones saying things like 'good game, wish I could play it'), and some others complaining about the lack of Southeast Asia servers. It's worth noting that launch issues like these tend to be common for MMOs and other online games, and New World's population cap is meant for the servers in general, not for the single big rush seen on launch day.
Is there anything interesting in the New World patch notes at launch?
With the official release, we've also got a look at the version 1.0 New World patch notes. One of the most notable additions, along with enabling a few Twitch features, is the inclusion of a Streamer Mode that lets players and streamers hide notifications and avoid unwanted interactions with other players. Aside from bug fixes, the other main feature is that the Main Quest will take players further into the game, all the way to Shattered Mountain.
How are New World microtransactions?
Players on Reddit have provided screens of the in-game shop for buying Marks of Honor (a premium in-game currency) and the items that can be bought with them. The fact that microtransactions would be in the game has been public knowledge for a while and brought up concerns about them ruining the game. So far, the items offered in the shops are all cosmetic items like equipment skins, emotes, and dyes, some of which were revealed by a dataminer a month ago. However, this is set to change in 2022 when they'll consider adding boosts to the game in the hopes of helping newer players catch up with veterans.
As for the currency used to buy said items, players can buy them in packs ranging from $5 for 5,000 Marks to $50 for 50,000 Marks. To give an idea of how much that is, dyes cost 3,000 Marks each, emotes range from 4-6K, and an armor skin bundle can cost 13,000 Marks.
New World is available on Steam. If you'd like to connect with the New World community, Amazon has several channels you can check out.