New World Goes Seasonal with Fellowship & Fire
Amazon Games announced a new seasonal content model for MMORPG New World. RPGamer was given the opportunity to learn about its plans with the seasonal model from Creative Director David Verfaillie. The seasonal model will begin with the release of its first season, Fellowship & Fire, on March 28, 2023, with subsequent seasons planned for summer, fall, and winter.
The seasonal model is geared to provide players with more regular content updates, including new features and gameplay elements. Each season will come with free and premium reward tracks on its season pass. The free track will be available for free to all players and contain 100 levels of rewards, each level granting a singular reward such as skins, pets, in-game Marks of Fortune currency, boost tokens, equipment, and crafting and progression materials. The premium track will be an optional purchase priced at 20,000 Marks of Fortune (equivalent to around $20 in cost), and adds an additional reward for each level. Those who purchase the premium track during a season will retroactively be given any reward they would have earned if it was purchased at the beginning. Up to 2,500 Marks of Fortune will be available to earn in the free track, with another 5,000 available in the premium track.
Players will have three main ways to progress their season pass levels. The first is the season journey, available to all players level 25 or over. This gives players five chapters of directed goals and tasks that introduce the season, its mechanics, and story arc. Second is season challenges, higher difficulty challenges available to complete at any time. Third is the activity card, a bingo-style card of activities of varying types. Completing one of these gives players a stamp that they can use on the card. Each stamp awards some season XP, with a larger bonus given for completing a line. There will also be a small amount of passive season XP for most other in-game content.
David Verfaillie revealed that the in-game abilities and power of the rewards in the season pass will be available elsewhere in the game, stating that the team sees it as akin to providing extra loot drops rather than exclusive content, though the premium track rewards will come with unique skins. He also stated that seasons are planned to introduce new features over time, so future seasons are likely to expand upon gameplay elements introduced in earlier seasons. Certain quests will be made permanent and remain after the season such as building up the Silver Crows, though much of the seasonal content will be vaulted at the end of the season. The majority of season content, such as the questline, will be available at the start of each season, though there will be additional events and activities introduced during it.
The story in Fellowship & Fire sees the return of NPC Grace O’Malley. She is building a mercenary group called the Silver Crows, recruiting the player and together taking on their first client. The warrior Skye recruits them to recover her spark after a Varangian warlock has taken sapping strengthen from champions and using it to empower the Varangian hordes. Players will encounter a new type of enemy called the Forged, Varangians that have been reborn in the Imperium Forge, the site of a new expedition included as part of the season, and have been granted new fire powers.
New World released for PC in 2021 and is set in a world inspired by the 17th-century age of expedition, with players being part of the colonisation effort of Aeternum Island. The game features classless combat that is designed to accentuate player skill. Multiplayer options include 100-player War siege battles, 40-player Outpost Rush area control battles, five-player Expedition dungeons, and 50-player Invasions as players fight off waves of monsters.