New World Review in Progress

It’s now been a full week since New World’s launch, and conditions are only just beginning to improve. If you’ve been following updates, you might have heard all kinds of stories about server login queues backed up for several hours at a time. I’m here to tell you that, at least in my experience, virtually none of them have been exaggerated. I’ve run into several instances where I’d sit in a queue for four hours and get in, only to have New World crash-to-desktop. Then it’s back to the end of the four-hour-long queue before I could get back in once more. So, if you’re wondering why this review isn’t done yet, that’s a big part of the reason. The other part is that this is a big MMORPG!

On top of that, I experienced far worse cases of lag and rubberbanding this past weekend than I’d experienced during the week prior. There was a point where, while fighting a group of enemies, New World rubberbanded so hard that I completely missed the fight; the next frame I saw was the death screen. “Frustrating” doesn’t even begin to describe what that experience was like, given that when it’s working correctly New World’s quests can be gleefully inconvenient at times, forcing you to travel to distant parts of the map without the assistance of mounts. On that note, at least it’s cool that you can build campfires practically anywhere, giving you a mobile respawn point if you remember to set them

When I’m actually able to play New World unimpeded and make consistent progress – which has only been the case for the last day or so – it’s only because queue times have significantly improved on my server. I’m still finding enjoyment in each of its crafting and harvesting systems. New World’s entirely player-run economy is especially interesting when you start to get a feel for how it plays into the always-on faction PVP conquests between the Marauders, Covenant, and Syndicate – each of whom are constantly vying for control over Aeternum’s 11 claimable territories.

I’m still finding Enjoyment in each of its crafting and harvesting systems.

The crux of this system is that you get serious benefits when trading and crafting in a town owned and operated by your faction. This, in turn, pads your wallet faster, allowing you to afford to craft better stuff and purchase a bigger and better house – translating to a more powerful character overall. There are other salient benefits too, like sharply decreased fast travel costs and accelerated harvesting speeds. It’s an inconvenience not to own as many territories as you can.

Now at level 27, I’ve discovered that there’s a deeply satisfying element of strategy that goes into drawing up your own personal supply lines and planning your Territory Rewards to give you the maximum benefit in certain zones. For instance, you can specialize in maximizing your harvesting speed in First Light and minimizing your trading fees in Windsward, which is especially handy if your faction owns both territories, since personal and faction-wide benefits stack on top of one another. I already feel myself getting into faction rivalries for this reason, and this is simply a much more interesting story than whatever is happening in the main quest. 

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