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Fresh Start Launch Day
November 2nd, 2022 12 PM Central European Time – New and returning players are impatiently waiting for the last few hours of the countdown until the New World fresh start servers open up. The air is fresh, the starting experience is fresh, and the nostalgia of September 29th, 2021 is very, very fresh in everyone’s minds. In a few hours everyone can relive the best moments of the game once again… no more dupes, no more exploits, and no more power difference.
The Death of a Game
June 9th, 2022 – The New World June developer update is out. 150 perks reworked, the first Summer event is announced, but more importantly… expedition tuning orbs will be removed. Not many details are yet known, but all-in-all it seems like a nice update. Not great, not terrible.
July 7th – 19 thousand 115 concurrent player peak. The lowest ever since the game’s release. Content delivery is slow. Bugs from Beta are still in the game. Amazon has announced the Summer update and that they will be taking a 2-month hiatus after it. No new content. No major changes. Only bug fixes. New World is dying.
July 20th – Another batch of server merges is announced. In 2 days 20 servers will disappear into thin air and merge into 9. Most players are relieved. Optimism is dead, but at least the game can live – if but a little longer. At the very least, now there will be enough players to fill a 50 people roster for invasions.
July 28th – The Summer Update! The Medley Fair! Musical instruments, a rudimentary Group Finder, an improved expertise system, an improved salvage system, faster leveling for gathering, reworked perks to boost crafters, and tuning orbs are a thing of the past and instanced wars are the future! People are happy. People are fishing. People. Are. Hopeful.
And then… silence…
The 2nd Coming
New World’s first major update is coming! People are excited. FOMO is everywhere! Potential returning players spam the subreddit to know if it’s worth coming back, and others who haven’t played in 10 months are already making guides and farming views. The hype is spreading like wildfire!
“Quality of life is so much better,” someone says.
“There’s so much content now. Definitely worth your money!” says another.
“Where are the mounts? Why is there no swimming yet?” says yet another.
“Feels good, different” says Amazon.
The player count has started to rise, and with it… a new request.
Fresh Start servers were becoming a hot topic of debate, and reddit was filled with more people who DIDN’T play the game than current players. One side was kindly DEMANDING fresh start servers, while the veteran players were adamant that they were not needed.
“Give fresh start!” said the returning players. “Your worlds are infested with dupes, exploits and mega companies”.
“There is no point.” replied the veterans. “Mega companies will just play on them and it will just become a normal server in 2 weeks”.
“You just want to dominate us new players with your Voidbent armor” said the clueless returnee.
“You're stupid” replied the veteran in his utmost intellect.
Outnumbered at 10:1, the veterans had lost the battle. But the war… the war would be theirs…
The Hype Before The Storm
August 31st – The starting experience and the greatsword go live on the PTR. The live server count had almost doubled in less than two weeks. The servers were flooded and the PTR reached an all-time high of 2104 concurrent players. Returning players were checking the update, and veterans were trying to find the fastest way to level up with the new leveling changes.
9 hours in and some players were already doing Genesis to increase their level 60 expertise. Balance, it seems… is going to be an issue.
October 3rd – The big announcement! In just 15 days New World’s biggest update will go live! The marketing begins but something… something seems to be missing.
October 6th – It is here! Well, not quite. Fresh Start servers are announced and people are FURIOUS. The launch has been decided to be November 2nd, 2 weeks after the Update’s release.
October 18th – A huge new zone, a beautiful and complex new dungeon, a revamped starting experience, a new event, ultimate abilities, and a brand-new weapon. The population more than triples from its lowest peak. It is as high as back in January and the players are ECSTATIC! Everyone is questing, everyone is farming, and the queues are SKYROCKETING.
October 25th – RETURN TO AETERNUM! A marketing power move by Amazon, exploiting the opportunity they have to attract as many players as they can before next week’s fresh launch.
4 teams. 4 servers. More than 40 streamers. And a whole lot of uh… objectives.
The “Fresh” Start
November 2nd 2022 4 PM Central European Time – The blessed time has come. Nope, wait. There’s a delay.
4:30 PM – Another delay.
5 PM – Another… delay.
6 PM – THE SERVERS ARE UP AND RUNNING! The dam holding new and returning players breaks and 109 thousand players concurrently flood the new servers. The true New World launch experience has once again hit the shelves, as the queues go up to 25 thousand players on every announced server in less than 5 minutes from their launch.
Thankfully, this time Amazon was prepared.
As soon as the queues hit one server, Amazon would just spin up another and lock the previous one. And they did it again. And again. And again. 13 servers were planned and 25 were launched. And absolute and massive success.
Day 1 on the Fresh Start Servers - The time had come and returning players were restarting their experience wherever queues were lighter. The beaches were full, the camps were drowning the streets, and life… was… good. But something had been brewing in the background for quite some time.
For more than a month, almost all the big PVP companies had been already planning on jumping into the fresh start. They know the game, they know the meta, they know how to powerlevel and they know how to farm innocent new players’ gold by holding and defending towns.
In less than 2 hours after launch in Artemis – the first server launched in EU Central – Everfall, Windward and Brightwood are claimed for 100 thousand gold each. Two of them from the same company. The veterans were here. In fact, they were everywhere and they were ready to turn fresh servers into the very same thing all the new players were trying to get away from.
Old New World
November 17th – Less than 3 weeks after the fresh start servers, the legacy servers have taken a big hit. Only 2 out of 23 servers have hit the 2000 player daily peak and what’s worse, server merges for those legacy servers are already here.
With no incentive to join an old server – like leveling boost, weapon experience boost or… anything really – the influx of new players has dwindled down to nothing and the population is steadily falling. After all, who would want to join something considered… legacy?
By this time, all the main PVP hubs in the old New World were completely dead. Castle of Steel and Fae – the US East and EU PVP servers respectively – were becoming increasingly inactive. Delos – the once only remaining Southeast Asia server with constant daily queues – was reduced to a shell of its former self, barely hitting 1 thousand concurrent players peak. The great and feared companies were – in most part, – completely inactive, and some of them had no members online in their main characters for more than 3 days. Fae, Castle of Steel and Delos were old and unappealing. Fresh Starts are the future and – like it or not – you as an old player are irrelevant unless you drop your progress, and follow the herd to start anew.
Wait… there are some VIP rooms we’re forgetting about. Titan, Death, Overlord and Dracul. The invite-only streamer servers suffered no queues. Streamers were paid and ready to venture forth and have fun in Aeternum and make their team win by completing fun and “interesting” challenges along with their 2500 per server followers!
Surely, viewers like me wouldn’t join such a server just to run their mouths and then log off immediately killing the servers…
Yeah they died in a couple of days.