Amazon’s New World is undergoing some alpha-testing right now, and a proposed feature isn’t going down well. Leaked patch notes suggested the MMORPG game could sell some form of XP boosts in-game, leading to considerable backlash.
A screengrab purported to be from the NDA-restricted alpha started circulating on Reddit on May 13, describing a “premium currency shop.” The store would provide cosmetic goods, and “may sell quality-of-life items or boosts that will help players improve their time spent leveling up their character and trade skill experience.” That last part raised concerns over a pay-to-win, or otherwise unbalanced gameplay structure, due to experience boosters.
Recurring feedback led to a letter from studio director Rich Lawrence on Twitter, explaining that for now, “all store items at launch will be exclusively cosmetic in nature.” However, that may not always be the case. “Looking towards the future, we will also test ideas on how to offer players quality of life items for mechanics like rested XP, and fast travel, both obtainable in-game and purchasable in the store,” Lawrence writes. “The more players who are able to reach our exciting endgame content and game modes, the healthier the overall game experience will be for all players.”
This hasn’t gone down especially well, and the New World team has been trying to clarify in the replies. “It isn’t about rushing people to the endgame,” the official New World Twitter account stated, in response to one skeptical tweet. “It is about supporting people who don’t have as much time to play and helping them reach the end game with the time available to them.”
“MMOs take a tremendous time investment that not everyone has available,” another reply from New World explains. “Boosts can be a way for someone who doesn’t have time to get more out of the time they can play and support the game and community in another way.”
This has onlookers split, some disliking the idea outright, and some praising the option. One suggestion is to implement boosts similar to World of Warcraft, offering them a considerable amount of time into New World’s life such that other balancing problems have been ironed out, and there’s a dedicated playerbase already.
Please read this letter regarding the storefront testing we are currently doing in Alpha. pic.twitter.com/IucMciGWC1
— New World (@playnewworld) May 15, 2021
Amazon’s New World was delayed, again, in February, now set to properly launch in August.