New World Endgame Changes Spur Controversy, Devs Respond

New World recently released its Into the Void update, bringing with it a host of new features and fixes. One thing players didn't reckon with, however, was that it also made the endgame harder — much harder.

Over the weekend, endgame players began noting on Reddit and elsewhere that certain high-level enemies had received a major buff. The net effect of this buff is that certain enemies are next to impossible to take down while playing solo, further elongating an already savage endgame grind.

"This is so dumb, solo people just cannot do anything even close to endgame now," one player wrote. "I get how [Amazon Game Studio] wants people to party up as it is an MMO but soloing should still be an option, especially if youre [sic] running the normal missions. I get if you want to go clear places like myrkgard or sirens or malevolence, you should group up but relatively normal elite zones should be hard, but also soloable."

Word of the changes soon spread throughout the rest of the community, spurring further controversy in a game racked by duplication exploits, a currency crisis, and other issues. It was followed by a fresh wave of negative reviews on Steam, dropping it to a "Mixed" rating despite remaining "Mostly Positive" overall.

In response, New World designer Mike "Berserker Mike" Willette said that the "proper context" wasn't delivered on the reasoning behind the update. Willette wrote that the team's goal is to have a "variety of areas" that players can go to for crafting materials and gear. However, Amazon Game Studios also wants players to feel challenged in return.

"Our vision for end game is multifaceted, and includes Outpost Rush and Wars, Invasions and Arenas, 60+ Corrupted breaches, 60+ Elite POIs and named creatures, and Expeditions, with more to come in the future. There will not be one single source for best in slot and our desire is to encourage players to engage with various activities," Willette wrote.

He added that New World's developers are "actively looking into the activities and reward balance."

The controversy is yet another example of how New World can be a rewarding and yet frustrating experience for players. Our review notes that it saves the "best moments for the endgame," but that you have to "grind like hell" to get them. While New World's growth has leveled off since its explosively popular launch, it retains a large and very active fanbase who seem willing to roll with its more frustrating elements in exchange for its rich and rewarding PvP.

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