New World’s Scot Lane talks Summer Game Fest announcement timing and Amazon support


As we noted this morning, New World’s Season of the Guardian is live today – in fact, it was only a few minutes later than Amazon’s estimate, and while we’re sure players will eventually dig up some bugs, thus far the most annoying bit seems to be graphical changes to faces, which… we didn’t see that one coming.

In any case, Amazon had said its traditional Monday video would be delayed until today to coincide with the update, and in fact, it also turns out to be the community manager-led video that Scot Lane teased last week. Leala aka CM Lydia kicks off a new video type called Eye on Aeternum, and in addition to recapping today’s patch, she highlights the Springtide Bloom event and promises multiple upcoming videos (on cooking, balance, and economy).

But the part players will want to hear is the chunk where Leala chats with Scot Lane himself, who addresses the big June announcement and why the team is hyping it up without giving any details; it’s partly to “create a moment” as Amazon in “planning to announce something pretty big that’s going to impact a lot of the players, both old and new,” but it’s also to coincide with Summer Game Fest. He also clarifies that he’s not being forced into silence from on high; the core team made the decision, including him.

Lane also addresses dipping population and weaker comms, telling fans that the team is banking on the big announcements and content later this year to reinvigorate the game and “turn that around.” He further points out that peak concurrency is not a great way to measure the health of the game over the course of a month. (And he’s right, but also it’s the key measure players can actually see, so players have little other choice.)

There’s yet another question from vocal PvP players who realize they are not the core constituency of the MMO but believe their dedication entitles them to prioritization, but Lane doesn’t take that bait; he points out again that PvP players don’t always agree on what PvP players want, and he hopes they’ll be sated by the PvP stuff coming in the June reveal. (He doesn’t say so, but you could infer from the way this discussion goes that it’s another mode.) That conversation dovetails into commentary on taking niche feedback into account without letting small factions of players lead the game astray.

The final remarks from Lane express ruefulness over the way some of his responses have been interpreted by players. For example, he notes that in the last video (from GDC), his replies about the dev team’s devotion to the game led people to believe that while the team is dedicated, Amazon execs are not (and he’s right, it absolutely did come off that way). Apparently, however, that’s not what he meant, and it’s also not the case.

“That just couldn’t be more [far] from the truth. If Amazon wasn’t like totally… they are so behind us. I’m so fortunate for where we are. I think when I qualify things like ‘the dev team,’ it’s because I don’t want to speak for players, right? I want to make sure that the perspective is from… like, I don’t know what everyone’s thinking. I only have evidence of what I think and what the people above me think. And as a player I know what I think. But I want to make sure that when we’re talking about this stuff, there’s no conspiracy theory or anything. We all want this to be successful.”

Source: YouTube
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