Amazon Games' New World seems to have settled into its groove after a successful launch and, the odd bot and server issue aside, is looking like it'll be a serious contender among the bigger MMOs for years to come. Now that the early stages have passed smoothly, the developer has announced the New World Public Test Realm.
Fairly common among MMOs, a PTR is basically a set of early access servers that allow developers to gather feedback and test new stuff before it's added to the game proper. "Between our internal testing efforts and your feedback we hope to catch and resolve all serious issues before they reach the live servers," reads the announcement. "Hundreds of changes have been made and the full release notes will be shared on release day."
The PTR will allow players to instantly level to certain ranges, and provide appropriate gear, and anyone who already owns the game on Steam will have access to it. The New World Public Test Realm application should appear in everyone's Steam library by the end of today, and the PTR servers open today at noon PT (7PM UTC).
"When the test period is complete and the main New World game is updated with the previewed content, all worlds will shut down and be wiped clean. You will still see the New World PTR application in your Steam library, but there will not be active servers until the next time we announce a test."
OK so: what's it testing? The developer is seeking feedback on a few new additions in particular, including the new Void Gauntlet weapon (a DPS/support hybrid weapon with "an arsenal of buffs and debuffs"), the new enemy faction Varangian Raiders, a bunch of new low-level beasties ("Withered Swarmancer, Beetle, the Lost Shaman, Pirate Alligator, Ancient Guardian Pyromancer, and enhanced Corrupted Laborers!") and a new Legendary Weapon Quest series.
Main storyline quests have also been tweaked with "new task types and quest variants, including wave events, destructible objects, and proximity nodes for tracking."
There are also three new PVP Faction Mission types: Control Points, where you go capture forts; Intercept, where you beat up enemies and, it says here, "collect their tears"; War Camp loot, where you have to nick plans from an enemy camp. On top of this the 'poach' missions have been removed (this probably refers to some of the bs gathering PVP missions that had little to do with PVP), and "almost all" PVP missions now rest on death rather than being forfeited.
Finally it's big news for the economists. "All Trading Posts have been linked and are now unified! You can buy and sell the same results from any Trading Post in the world. Fees for Buy and Sell Orders are defined by the Settlement that you’re posting from. Additionally, Transaction Taxes on purchases you make are defined by the Settlement in which you are making the purchase. Items listed in Sell Orders that expire return to the Settlement from which they were posted."
Amazon Games doesn't put a timeframe on when PTR features will find their way into the game, but emphasises that everything on there is basically considered complete and "in their final phase of testing and bug fixing". The latest update for New World was last week, targeting gold sellers in particular,