It’s a new world, if not exactly a brave one. New World, a massively multiplayer online role-playing game published by Amazon, is officially out today for PC, marking the first legitimately successful game release for the planet’s most valuable company. (Pour one out for the super-face-planted Crucible.)
New World didn’t have the smoothest road to launch. Extensive reports in Wired and Bloomberg detailed a development process rife with mismanagement, unqualified leadership, top-to-bottom overhauls, and general dysfunction, eventually leading to multiple delays. Early character designs of the MMO, which is set in a fictional realm reminiscent of colonial-era America, were deemed by tribal consultants as offensive portrayals of Native Americans.
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In July, the game finally launched in closed beta, at which point some players summarily trolled the game with facts about Amazon. Also, running New World caused some players’ gazillion-dollar graphics cards to sputter into oblivion.
Despite it all, right off the bat, players have flocked to the game. As noted by Eurogamer, the MMO topped more than half a million concurrent players on Steam, an impressive figure that’s no doubt spurred by partnerships between Amazon and influential influencers. (Let’s see where these figures are in a month.)
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Go solo in an epic race against time!
Face thrilling, unpredictable challenges as you explore distinctive handcrafted lands.
How the game is actually being received by players is a different story. At the moment, reviews on Steam are smack in the middle of “mixed,” with 53 percent of roughly 5,400 respondents awarding the game a positive rating. Some lament its lack of “catgirls” and SEA (southeast Asia) servers, alongside other connectivity issues. Others are more positive, saying they “have [a] sword and i stab things,” actions described as “good.” And more still want to see features added to the game, like “Jeff Bezos skin,” while noting that the “Beff Jezos” username is already taken.
Here, as told by Steam reviews, is the initial verdict of New World.
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Based on the brief time I’ve spent digging through the reviews, it seems like most of the negative reviews are for long queues, missing SEA and Oceanic servers, along with high ping.
I’ve only come across a handful of negatives that directly criticize the gameplay. One of which was a little too focused on petty problems. I don’t know what that says about the game, but I don’t think the 53% score is noteworthy… yet.