Updated: Kept the numbers up to date. On initial publication the playercount was 450,000.
New World is out now (opens in new tab), and it seems players are ready for a new MMO: the game is currently sitting pretty (opens in new tab) with 520,000 concurrent players, according to SteamDB's numbers. That's a hell of a result for a game that isn't free-to-play, and is basically a big grind (opens in new tab). People do love a good grind.
Our own Fraser is currently fishing for his life in the world's early hours (to be fair, he spent ages doing more productive things in the beta (opens in new tab)). My favourite part of New World so far wasn't when it was blowing up graphics cards (opens in new tab), but when it gained a player called 'AmazonOfficial' who went around spouting inconvenient Amazon facts (opens in new tab).
We'll keep an eye on the player numbers but just to emphasise: 520,000 and rising represents mainly European servers (The NA servers turned on about 20 minutes ago), and suggests enormous interest in New World—in the short-term at least. It just goes to show that, after all this time, players are still thirsting for the next World of Warcraft (opens in new tab). Whether New World will slake them, or is merely a temporary distraction, only time will tell.