The day has come at last. After changes and postponements and what not, New World goes live today.
I received an email yesterday morning from Amazon with the Steam key that was the fulfillment of my pre-order. I launched Steam and plugged that in and downloaded the client, which weighed in at about 39GB, putting it about on par with the Diablo II Resurrected client I downloaded last week.
After that all there was left to do was wait. And even the wait wasn’t that long. The various server regions were all set to start up at 8am local time… except Australia for some reason.
That means pretty much everything is live now. But I won’t bother to log in until later today, after work and the usual rest I need. It is hard to sit at you desk at home all day working and then transition to games. I need to be somewhere else for a while.
Amazon has provided a whole bunch of details about the launch in a post on their site, including the list of servers available.
Meanwhile, somebody has also put together a whole web site about which streamers will be on what servers for launch so you can avoid the servers that are going to get slammed because somebody with 100K followers is going to swamp the server.
As for why I am playing, a legitimate question after my somewhat tepid summary of the latest beta relative to where the game stood a few years back, there are a few reasons.
First, I remain interested in how it turned out. The change to a theme park stance has worn away any hype I might have had for the title, but that might be a good thing. Hype knows no sense or logic, it only knows hype and it is very easy to let hype inflate your expectations. Lower expectations mean a more appraising look at the title and less likelihood of real disappointment.
Second, it has been a bit of a ride getting here since the game was announced back in 2016. Five years isn’t that long of a stretch… let me tell you about some Kickstarter backed MMOs that promised to ship more than five years ago that still aren’t even in beta… but given the gyrations and the delays and the change of course… again, I am interested to see where it ended up.
Third, it is a bit of an event in the genre, the first big studio launch of an MMORPG in a while. How it goes will likely be read as a barometer for the genre as a whole. Are MMORPGs a thing again? Is the market ready for new blood? And how long has it been since I was at an MMORPG launch? Expansions don’t count and I cannot remember the last time I was there on day one for a new title.
Finally, it is kind of a low commitment. New World is buy to play; grab the box for $40 and no subscription required. I am down with that. Not having a subscription cuts both ways of course. While it makes it easy to buy in, I also have a tendency to prioritize the games I am paying a monthly fee for when it comes to play time. But we’ll see. I also want to see the day one cash shop versus what it looks like a year from now.
I have no idea where I will end up server-wise. And the fact that companies (guilds) are capped at 100 people means I’ll likely not join one any time soon if only to avoid taking up a limited resource for some group.
And, of course, we’ll see if Amazon is really ready. There is certainly a chance that there will be issues. It would barely be an MMORPG launch without some problems. I’ll be along for the ride. Let’s see how it rolls.
Addendum: I peeked in this morning just to see how things were going and it is queues everywhere, rolling up into the 25K zone for some “cool name” servers, like Valhalla in US East. I expect we might see some additional servers coming online before the weekend.
Addendum 2: Oh yeah, new servers inbound