A Journey Into A New World

Amazon’s new MMO, New World was officially released yesterday on 28th September 2021. I had a brief play of it during the open Beta but didn’t really have enough time to fully experience the game but what I did play I enjoyed, my only real negative was my PC running hot.

I had been keeping up to date with the game since the Beta and the hype got too much so after debating whether to get the full game I decided to go ahead and buy it, after all I realised I had spent more than the £35 game price on takeaways during September so figured if I can waste money on food when I’ve been too lazy to cook then I can spend £35 on a game as I will get more enjoyment over a longer time playing a game than eating takeaways.

The night before the game released I could pre-download the game which only took a couple of hours and I could change my settings in the menu so based on what I had seen online to try and stop my PC getting too hot I set the game to limit it to 60fps as apparently it being uncapped is a cause of overheating.

On the release day it was due to go live at 7am UK time and as my daughter woke me up just after 6am I was logged on and ready to go as soon as the servers went live and I was pleased to see that they went live on time.

I had already decided my server as looking online it was noted that the Bifrost server was going to be where a lot of UK players would be heading to and having players in the same region as me is preferable in an MMO for grouping up so I created my character straight away on the Bifrost server and clicked on play.

As I clicked play I got the opening cinematic which I skipped as I had seen this in the Beta and then my screen went black and stayed black for longer than my liking making me think it had crashed but eventually it showed I was in a queue and I was over 4000th in the queue which wasn’t great.

While waiting I jumped onto Twitch and found a small UK streamer that just happened to also be on Bifrost so I watched him and found he was also in the queue but lower than me and when he got in I could at least watch the game while waiting to get in myself. As I watched my queue place slowly go down, about 2 hours later I was down to around 500ish in the queue when the game crashed and the servers went down, I was not amused.

After about half an hour the servers came back up and I clicked play straight away and found I was just over 3000 in the queue now which I figured would take a few more hours but luckily it jumped down quick and 5 minutes later I was in the game and could start playing.

The tutorial at the start was the same as in the Beta so I knew what to expect and once I emerged from it I found myself in a different starting area than I was in the Beta but I quickly realised that the starting quests were exactly the same as the other starting area, I assume the starting quests are the same regardless where you start.

Having played a little bit of the Beta I knew what to expect so the first thing I done before even getting to the first quest was to start gathering flint and wood from bushes and then I crafted myself some basic tools as I wanted to start gathering as soon as I could while questing.

I quickly ran through the quests in the starting area making sure to skin all animals I killed and to pick up as much flint and wood as I could while heading over to the first town which is about as much as I done in the Beta.

At this point having done the same as the Beta the experience was very similar and although there were some issues getting into the game I found that the game itself was running very smoothly even on the lowest settings with the only minor issue being the lag and fps issues when I got to the first main town but that soon went away, I think the issue was just the town loading in and there being lots of people there but after a couple of minutes I could walk around and do things with no problems. I also noticed my PC wasn’t getting as hot as it was during Beta so maybe capping the fps to 60 has helped with that problem.

The biggest difference for me from Beta was that I had a change of weapons, in Beta I mostly played sword and board and a bit of bow as that was what I started with and didn’t get far to change but having decided to get the game I looked onto different weapons and play styles and decided to try bow and spear using the bow to pull mobs from range and doing some damage and then swapping to spear close range and I found it really enjoyable and handy having a long range and short range weapon depending on fights.

Throughout my time waiting and playing I continued watching the guy I found on Twitch and as it happened he was in the same starting area as me so I had a bit of an idea what I needed to do but I also found based on chat and conversations that I had been lucky to get into the game when I did as most people were stuck in massive queues and it was mentioned and noticed on some websites that the maximum players on a server at any time is only 2000 and with there not being enough servers for everyone to play most people had massive queues some up to 10,000 which is ridiculous, so there was no way I was logging out until I had no choice.

The rest of my morning and afternoon consisted of questing, gathering and crafting and as time vanished I was having lots of fun, I did have some fps issues when moving into new areas but it didn’t take long for it to settle down and it’s probably just my poor PC causing it and it never stopped me playing.

By around 5pm I had managed to play for a good 7 hours which was lucky as most players were still unable to get logged in, I think there was a couple of reasons behind this, first the low 2000 limit on the number of players allowed on a server, then those that did get in like me were enjoying it too much to log out and we knew that logging out would mean big queues to get back in and I noticed several players afk running into walls to try and not get timed out which apparently does work but not for much longer than the 20 min afk timer.

Another issue which hasn’t helped is that character names are locked worldwide which has meant that as the EU servers were up first long before the rest of the world we had players worldwide logging on just to create a character and reserve their name which they can later delete and create on their server which pushed queues up with players trying to get in that had no intention of playing and I would say some probably then played once they were in to quickly see how it was which has stopped EU players getting in to play.

At this time I didn’t have long before I had to log off but I did manage to get to level 10 and as I had been watching the same streamer on my server who had a company created I decided to join the same faction (Syndicate) and join his company as it was better than trying to find one when I knew his was UK players and had plenty of room and then I had to log off and resigned myself to a big queue later on.

Around 7.30pm I had more time to play and went to log on and found the servers were down but I timed it right as they came back up not long after I logged on so I hit play straight away as they came back up but found myself just over 800th in a queue which wasn’t as bad as I expected, it did however take nearly 2 hours to get in the game, at least football was on TV and I could watch that while waiting.

When I eventually got back in the game was as before with no issues, they might have issues with people getting into the game but once past the queue and into the actual game it has been running well, at least from my experience. Further questing, gathering and crafting ensued as and I got to level 14 before forcing myself to get some sleep around 1.30am managing to have a much better first day than most as I was able to play for around 11 hours through the day/night, I think I got lucky logging on just after servers had been down so I was early into the queues.

On day 2 I logged on around 8am and timed it quite good again as the severs had been down and just came back up so I was only about 300th in the queue and got in fairly quick but then I had an issue as it showed lag detected on the screen and I couldn’t move, it then kicked me out and put me back in the queue but only at just over 100 so I got in eventually to be able to play by 9am which is again better than most people, the Twitch streamer I was watching got in then got kicked out and couldn’t get back in all day.

My second day went much like the first as the game is a grind of quests and if you want you can grind gathering and crafting skills which I like doing, I probably spent more time gathering and crafting on day 2 as I wanted to get my skills higher to be able to gather higher raw materials and over the 2 days so far I got mining, lumberjacking and skinning to level 50 and harvesting to 30 opening up higher level farming and also I found out that at certain points you get to track some materials which has helped as they appear on the compass when close by which helps a lot to find things, harvesting has been slower as it’s harder to notice things to harvest amongst normal flowers and trees but it is speeding up now a lot of lower level things are showing on my compass. I’ve also used the raw materials to level up most crafting skills to around 50 too so I can craft a lot more and I’m probably just ahead of my character level as I can now craft things I’m too low level to use.

I also got to look at the achievements today as it was bugged yesterday and wouldn’t show anything, looking through them there is a lot to complete and if someone was inclined to get them all there is more than enough to easily get their money’s worth as it could take several months or a couple of years to complete every one, I might try and get some interesting ones that reward titles. Speaking of which I got my first title as I found an easy one which only needed me to fail 10 times trying to catch a fish and I was rewarded with the title Feeling Crappie which kind of sums up how I feel about the servers but not the game.

By around 4pm I had managed a good 7 hours playing and had levelled my character up to level 18 along with all my skills to around 50 which is good going considering most players can’t even get in but after filling up my bags and needing to go back to town to empty them I used the recall to inn function rather than walking all the way and my laziness cost me as the game crashed and kicked me out and I couldn’t get back in. The queue for my server was around 4000 which was too long and I thought I might have better luck creating a second character on a low population server but the lowest had a queue of just under 3000 so it was impossible to get back on and play and my journey ended for now, hopefully I will get lucky again in the evening or morning and get a low queue time.

Overall after 2ish days of the game being out Steam shows I have 24.5 hours played while in game the achievements when I looked not long before it crashed had around 18 hours played so I’ve spent 6.5 hours queuing to play which is probably much less than most.

Hopefully the server issues will be fixed soon, I’m not sure what the solution will be as there is too many people wanting to play on not enough servers of which each is limited to only 2000. Amazon could increase server sizes but I think any more than 3000 would populate the world too much making gathering and questing harder while opening more servers would help spread out new players but it could end up with dead servers if too many leave and more servers doesn’t help players like me that’s put in 18 hours investment into a character already and found a company and people to play with so would rather continue where I am.

Whatever happens I’m enjoying the game and want to be able to log on when I want to play and be able to play straight away or after a little queue and not sit in a endless queue for hours, my problem is that I’m too fickle at times when playing games and can go through spells of being addicted to a game then taking a break or moving on, I need the momentum to continue and to be able to play every day when I have time otherwise I know I will move onto another game, there’s only so many times I will sit waiting in a long queue before I give in and find a game I can play and I’m hoping that doesn’t happen as I’ve been looking for a game I can get stuck into, that captivates me, that motivates me to play and is enjoyable and based on what I’ve played so far this could be a game that does that and if I can play every day I could see myself playing it for a long period, into end game and beyond. I’m also interested to see how the different factions work out over a long period of owning and fighting over territories which will only happen if players can play, can play with friends/companies and can gain a sense of faction/server pride which means being able to get onto your server whenever you can, also the factions won’t be very balanced if one faction can dominate just because they get more people lucky enough to get past the queue and into the game.

For now I’m a happy gamer with slight frustrations regarding servers and I’ve been one of the lucky ones that’s been able to play, let’s hope it stays that way.

– Sparko Marco

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