New World discusses opting out of PvP, addresses colonialism concern

    
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While we continue to wrap our heads around the fact that New World not only emerged from its self-imposed exile but also announced a May 2020 release date, Amazon is talking up the game and trying to stress how it will set itself apart from the rest of the field.

Eurogamer pressed the studio about the inherent problems of setting a game during colonial America, to which Amazon said that New World isn’t in America at all, but rather a fictional magical island in the middle of the Atlantic with no natives and no slaves. Just a lot of bad hoojoo and the promise of immortality. It’s a topic that’s come up more than once this year during the game’s development.

“The colonialism stuff: there’s no way to tell that story in a good way,” said Game Director Scott Lane. “We are not that. This is not in America. We don’t have any history from America on the island. There’s nothing there that would tie us to America.”

Lane also said that players will have an option whether or not to participate in territory struggles and open-world PvP which will be a major part of the game world. “If you don’t care about this stuff as a player, you can have a huge, massive experience without any of it,” he promised. In fact, it sounds as if the game’s moved from a predominantly PvP-centric experience to one based on flags and toggles. In an interview with MOP just one year ago, the studio told us New World was a “game at its heart, because combat is a focus and very skill based in moment to moment game play, which is particularly compelling with other players as your opponents,” with “areas” for PvP-only, but no flags were mentioned at the time.

New World is still attempting to buck traditional MMO design by allowing skill to be a major factor in fights. This means that lower levels can still kill higher ones, provided that they are good enough in action combat. Without classes, New World will be dependent on armor choices and weapon skill lines to set players apart from each other.

Incidentally, players (including some of our writers!) who registered for the game back on Amazon several years ago when it was announced have been getting this email that seems to suggest that we’ll be getting the game for free (which itself may indicate that the base game will be free for everyone).

Did I just get New World for free? from MMORPG

Source: Eurogamer
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Serenityinaz12

So it’s a game that was designed to be pvp-centric and is now trying to not be pvp oriented as much? So in all likelihood will be lacking for other types of players.

I’m really baffled why companies have for years continued to introduce these pvp-focused sandbox mmos that seem to always fail. Have any ever truly succeeded? Mortal Online, Darkfall, Warhammer, Legends of Aria (alive but basically dead), Crowfall (in development but already marred by tons of issues and very low player base) etc. They all fail.

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John Kiser

SWG was successful until it started to try and be more WoW like and got shut down as a result. It was more pve and pvp focused lviing in the same world with a good flagging system and pvp areas (planets) a lot of interopability and even a focus on non combat classes etc. No one is making sandboxes like that. What they make is open world FFA PVP games with some farming elements and your basic mmo gathering with 0 interopability and some have housing areas you can set up outside of town. None are well designed, thought out etc and sandbox has become an excuse for lazy game design.

The Weeb formerly known as Sray
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The Weeb formerly known as Sray

SWG was not particularly successful, which is what prompted the WoW-like changes that we call the “CU” and “NGE”. After the game reached the height of its population, around 400k six months after launch, it started losing players at a rate of 15k per month, which would be an alarming rate even for WoW today. Furthermore, SWG was built with mostly the same design ideas as modern survival sandboxes: a few nuances aside, and other than the ability to flag PVP on and, off there’s effectively very almost no difference.

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Wiseman0

False. The housing, player trading, skill and class management, and player creating is still far beyond most games today would attempt. SWG definitely wasn’t a survival game in any shape, form, or fashion. These days the word “sandbox” and “survival” are synonymous. It wasn’t that way at all.

Most survival games these days are mostly just open world shells for crafting with no purpose, boring rinse and repeat combat laziness, with no “real” story or RP groundwork, and items laying around for you to play with. That wasn’t SWG at all.

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Ashfyn Ninegold

We’ve got a resource-gathering, base-building, pvp-centric survival game with

a huge, massive experience without any of it

That’s a poser all on its own. But then I’m flummoxed by how a huge marketing company like Amazon can go all in for a PvP survival game and not have done any market research to tell them how viable it is.

Of course, I shouldn’t be that surprised, because Stadia.

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Arktouros

Amazon is most likely backing this to push Lumberyard and AWS more than their desire to be in gaming. They’d rather be the services behind the games and let other companies take risks on genres/games.

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Ashfyn Ninegold

Making a game as a proof of concept to sell their engine doesn’t bode well for the game itself or for its long-term future.

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Robert Mann

So… we can play while ignoring the entire settlement side of things if we wish to avoid PvP, in short. As long as you don’t mind being taxed at whatever rate people want to set.

Great, one of the pieces I am most interested in, ideally with NPC sieges that can be a fun coop experience, completely excluded… and I can pay for that privilege.

Nope. Try again Amazon. This isn’t attractive toward me as a potential player. I want to avoid the toxic gank idiocy, but this is not the way for that to happen.

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Arktouros

You also can’t make anything interesting gear wise without a player run city as the NPC towns cap out at very basic buildings. For example there were no public engineering stations in NPC towns at all meaning no guns/bows let alone high end anything.

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Raimo Kangasniemi

This could have changed too, perhaps?

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Roger Christie

The more they talk about this, the less likely I am to ever play it.

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Arktouros

I’m willing to stay open minded about things but flag toggles for PvP are atrocious in most settings. Beyond protecting the people who would never flag for PvP, they also allow for all sorts of antics for those to abuse on those who want PvP. This falls in line with any system designed to protect players ends up being abused by people.

I’m especially leery because due to things like resource scarcity taking a territory and having a buncha blueberries taking all your surrounding resources while you try to build your company’s base/fort would be extremely frustrating now that you can’t drive people away.

But as always the devil is in the details and we’ll have to see. If they’re going with the “appeals to everyone and no one” approach the title will be dead by end of 2020.

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Raimo Kangasniemi

The ‘blueberries’ will be paying tax to you and if you treat them well, they might fight for you.

And tax too much them and they might emigrate.

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Arktouros

Don’t care if they’re paying taxes if they’re stealing all my wood and stone it takes to make numerous walls. You can basically free build inside the fort radius so you can come up with some really inventive maze designs that basically force excessive keg use but can simultaneously be torn down for every day use when a siege isn’t occurring. However all that requires resources to be available which if damn rando blueberries are coming along and chopping your trees that won’t work. And honestly I could give a shit about the trees, but my kindling! Now that’s going too far. The unending demand for charcoal and having randoms scooping it all up without repercussion is just awful.

It also ruins the whole point of battle forts, aka: forts built outside of the protected radius but still inside the territory.

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Travis Adams

They removed freeform building, its prefab now.

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Arktouros

If so that’s super disappointing, there were some super interesting base designs you could do.

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Threevo V

Can someone enlighten me on this game? Is it closer to a proper mmo or is this a lobby/instance/hub based online multiplayer game A la the division or destiny with 3rd person action combat?

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Arktouros

It’s open world. All the zones are open world, but simultaneously they’re individual zones using Amazon tech to make it seamless. It’s actually very cool, when a zone goes down it just kinda “greys out” and you can’t cross that border.

Most of the combat is dark souls-esque with dodge rolling and a series of light and heavy attacks with blocks based around a stamina bar. You have maximum weight which affects not only what you’re wearing but also what you can carry, and going over on weight makes things take more stamina etc. 2H melee counters shields, 1h and shields counter ranged, ranged counters 2h melee. Magic wasn’t that present but seemed to be AOE focused but weaker. 3rd person combat.

Most of the things we know about zones are from the alpha which was a real technical test more than a game play test. However they have a progressing series of difficulty and availability of resources. Hard to comment on world setup because they were always planning on expanding the tiny (but still large) area available in the test (it was a tiny part of the world map).

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Brown Jenkin

Glad to hear the clear statement about the setting, it always seemed a lil fishy/questionable as are all “historical” settings imo. I’m pretty excited about the game, even if it might not be exactly my cup of tea (skill based vs. class based etc) it’ll be great if nothing else to see what Amazon can make happen with its mountains of money.

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Arktouros

They were always pretty clear on the setting, but that isn’t going to stop people from trying to make it into a controversy because controversies drive click views to click bait farm websites/youtubers masquerading as gaming news. Thankfully MOP has stayed above all that so far.

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Ashfyn Ninegold

Perhaps they shouldn’t have called it “The New World” if they didn’t want people to instantly leap to the assumption that it was set, I dunno, in the New World.

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Arktouros

Yes, but also no.

It’s certainly a reasonable initial reaction doubletake at a game set in a 1600-1700ish aesthetic named “New World” and all that might imply. However upon further research you see there are no natives, it’s in a fictitious place, and generally avoid most sensitive topics to move along with any potential concerns with perphaps a reflective. “That could have been soooo bad.”

Instead choosing to power through factual evidence and circumstance to the contrary and continue to imply there’s some sort of ulterior motive for setting is entirely nonsensical and seemingly only serves the purpose of being controversial for the sake of generating controversy.

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Brown Jenkin

Yeah disagree, obviously. There’s no stronger force in nerddom lately than the loathing of folks who are encroaching on nerd spaces. It was always pretty iffy what the setting was for New World and with the limited amount of information available it was pretty easy to come to the apparently incorrect conclusion that the game was focused on the conquest of the Americas as a backdrop… I mean aesthetics alone could definitely lead someone to conclude that. There’s nothing whatsoever wrong with Amazon making it clear what their setting is and isn’t… this isn’t a “SJWs ruining everything” issue.

taradyne
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taradyne

I’m still waiting to see that email. I pre-ordered the day the game was announced years ago and was one of the first to see an alpha invite. Do I need to pre-order again to get the email?

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Mewmew

“which itself may indicate that the base game will be free for everyone”

I haven’t seen that the base game will be free to everyone. It’s just for a brief time when the game was planned to be free and they opened up pre-orders, anybody who “pre-ordered” the game at that point locked in the price. Which means they’re getting it for 0.00 even though everybody else has to pay $40.

Who pre-orders a free to play game? I guess some lucky people. It’s so weird that they’d change to buy to play and let everybody who clicked to pre-order a free game get to keep that free price. I guess it must have been a small enough number that it didn’t matter. Either that or there is some legality issue going on since they let people actually “order” it at the time.

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Adam Russell

“Who pre-orders a free to play game?”

Anyone that wanted to help test or get a preview.

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Khrome

From what i’ve seen New World is more like survival games like Ark or Rust than an MMO. Currently a hard pass from me. Somehow the game feels like it’s a few years out of date already.

micedicetwice
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micedicetwice

They removed all survival parts from the game. Good luck on finding “up to date” mmo pal.

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EmberStar

Probably closer to Rust. Ark (and Conan Exiles) have singleplayer offline modes. Which makes them infinitely more playable for me. I’d never even consider Rust, because it’s online only. And for a lot of other reasons, such as characters being randomly generated. While I appreciate the humor in forcing frat boys to play as a well endowed black woman and experience a taste of virtual racism, it’s NOT what I look for in a character creator.

I’m not the target audience for New World, with or without PVP. I play Ark and Conan *because* they have a single player mode. Time stops when I’m not playing, so I can take a break (or just deal with real life) for days, weeks, or months and everything will still be there when I have time to play again. I can’t imagine how people play them online, where you have to log in every day or two just to keep your pets from starving. And where each time you log in you could find your fort flattened and everything dead because a bunch of no-lifers raided you at two in the morning. :( And where everything you own in game will literally self destruct and vanish if you can’t log in for a week, with or without offline raiders.