Is New World the Next Big MMORPG? Let's take a few minutes and talk about that.
2020 is looking to be a pretty good year in terms of MMORPG releases.
With the exception of Phantasy Star Online 2, Lost Ark and Crimson Desert, there doesn’t look to be any AAA titles that could come close to rivaling Amazon’s New World MMO launching in a few months.
New World is the upcoming love-child of the sandbox MMO and survival game genres.
The game is set on the fictional island of Aeternum, a land rich with the powerful substance known as Azoth. This resource in specific has the power to essentially grant any wish – eternal life, infinite power. But like all things – it comes at a cost.
We’re adventurers. Explorers, settlers, conquerors that have heard what this new world can offer. And thus begins the story, with us setting off to seek out the source of the Azoth while laying claim to Aeternum, killing anything and everything in our way.
This includes other players, and the Corrupted – a malevolent force of warped Humanoid’s that came before us, and general wildlife that were unlucky enough to be tainted by the malignant element.
As you no doubt gathered, PvP will play a large part in New World.
While initially, Amazon stated that PvP will be a main focal point of progression, ever since deciding to overhaul much of the game, they decided to not only make PvP more of an opt-in, but they removed various survival elements making it much more of an MMO.
This means that while yes, PvP will be important, it’s no longer going to be a requirement. You can forgo the entire PvP experience of the game if you really want to, or turn it on when you want to raid with guilds or groups of friends.
I know a lot of people were concerned for this because let’s be honest, a lot of MMO players prefer the PvE aspect of the game. That’s why like Final Fantasy XIV has grown as much as it did, and World of Warcraft went on to remove PvP servers all together.
Speaking of playing with friends, it wouldn’t be much of an MMO if we couldn’t play with other people, right? According to Amazon the servers will feature a capacity of up to 1,000 players at any given time.
While that does make for a pretty large concurrent player number, if New World expects to ever rival any of the other large MMOs out there it’s going to need to increase that number quite significantly.
And thankfully they revealed that their intentions are to hopefully continue to increase that – but have no confirmation currently if that will be possible before the game launches.
While a lot of current-MMOs struggle to find 1,000 players online concurrently, New World is going to be new, it’s going to be hyped, and it’s going to be developed with almost infinite funding.
There are going to be tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of players interested in trying this out when it launches.
I hope they’re anticipating this and have taken precautions to prevent players not being able to play with their friends. Anyone remember ArcheAge: Unchained and Gamigo’s mess of a launch with players trying to play with friends? Yeah let’s not repeat that.
So I’ve touched on PvP.. but neglected to discuss the most important aspect of the game, and that is PvE – ’cause let’s be honest, PvP is great, but if there’s nothing to do outside of PvP.. then why wouldn’t we instead be playing a PvP focused game like League?
New World will have an emphasis on crafting: You craft items, gear and more – and to craft you need to obtain resources and ingredients: This means going out into the world and farming them.
While farming materials to craft items via alchemy, creating weapons or armor via a blacksmith isn’t exclusive to this game as it’s quite a staple of the genre even, you’ll be required to farm to build your own home, and further, your own settlements.
Yup – you can choose to either go it alone and build your own solo home, or become part of a community and work with others to not only claim your little portion of land, but also defend against future invasions.
This will be because enemy corrupted will begin to lay waste to your home – as quoted from the developers directly, “the enemies in the woods will come for you.”
But you’re not limited to a single home: The devs claim you’ll have access to more than one settlement, meaning at times you might even be split between which settlement to defend or build up.
Unfortunately there won’t be any dungeons or raids to run through, but there will be large, powerful world-bosses for players to group together with other players to combat.
I was actually a little disappointed when they made this announcement, but I’m guessing it wouldn’t make much sense instancing part of the gameplay considering this is a sandbox MMO survival game hybrid.
One final note with regards to PvE is the fact that they’ve decided to add quests into the game that weren’t present in the previous Alpha builds of the game. This is part of their “overhaul” and looks to be due to them trying to take more of an MMO-route.
Adding on to that is the fact that the economy is going to be completely player driven.
I can say with certainty and clarity that I’m not a fan of player driven economies because as the playerbase dwindles, as it no doubt will – every game does, the economy will continue to deteriorate.
And while I’m not saying that New World employing this necessarily means the economy is going to end up in a less than stellar state, I’m cautious of how it’ll turn out.
I know some people are excited for this. A lot of Western indie developers believe this is the route to take to make a successful economy but if history has taught us anything.. it’s that you don’t need to fix what isn’t broken.
But then again a game like this – a game that has a focus on the survival aspect would benefit from a player driven economy, so it could realistically work out very well.
I guess it depends, in the end, on what kind of game it ends up being closer to.
Oh, I just now realized that after speaking about almost everything else.. I’ve completely neglected the combat. Yikes! That’s my bad.
So interestingly enough, the combat is going to be a little different to what we’re used to in the scene. No, it isn’t going to be tab-target, nor will it be action like Black Desert.
Instead, people have been comparing the combat to quite a different game in a completely different genre.. Dark Souls. Yup.
Combat is going to be a little more difficult, and it’s going to have mechanics that aren’t traditionally used in MMOs such as dodging and parrying, providing players with more direct control over the flow of battle.
Which leads me to my next point of discussion: Classes and leveling.
Instead of providing players with a holy trinity of classes, like tank:healer:DPS, instead, and I know some of you will like this whereas others will be a little appalled by it, New World will have an absence of classes.
They believe that providing players the freedom to play how they want, and furthermore what they want is paramount to an enjoyable experience long-term.
And I’ll be honest, they’re doing it in a way that will probably work out.
See, you can equip any kind of weapon you want, allowing you to essentially fill any role. However, each weapon type has masteries associated with it, meaning that the more you use a weapon, the more proficient you become at it.
Each weapon has their own unique set of skills that can only be utilized when wielding that specific type of weapon, meaning while there aren’t necessarily “classes” in-game, there are roles that function similarly to what a class would be.
That, to me, means there isn’t really much to worry about. It’ll make weapon-dancing a little more common, if that’s a possibility, but if you wanna be a tanky greatsword wielding warrior, you can probably manage that.
To add further to the customization of your character are attribute points. I know this has been a long-since dead feature in the MMO scene, but it is still actively used in the survival genre.
I’m not certain to what extent attribute points will be capable of being used, whether it’s for DPS-influencing statistics like strength or intelligence, or something more along the line of stamina or crafting speed.
New World if a very promising looking upcoming MMO. It is being backed by a company with endless funding, and has developers that worked on both World of Warcraft and EverQuest.
It looks absolutely beautiful, and is actually using a brand new engine for the game. I guess they’re hoping this is used more as a form of advertising their game engine in hopes that other developers will begin to create games with it as a basis.
More money for them after all.
It has a lot of good concepts and has a solid business model, opting to go the way of a buy-to-play MMO via Steam. Speaking of, New World is being built for PC, and PC only. So for players interested in playing on console, that’ll likely never be possible.
The game has an expected closed beta date of sometime in April 2020. Specifics weren’t given yet, but more information will be revealed as we close in on the release.
The full game will launch in May 2020 for players that purchase the game – with packages ranging from the $40 Standard Edition and the $50 Deluxe Edition.
The only difference between the two packs are, honestly, a few aesthetic items, a pet, an emote and a digital art book.
Which is pretty damn good if you ask me – as opposed to offering a plethora of pay-to-win or heavy pay-to-advance items like a lot of South Korean MMOs enjoy doing.
I’m very excited for the game. With what I know is confirmed to be releasing 2020, I definitely think New World has the potential to really – at this point in the year at least – have a shot at being 2020’s Best MMO release.