Thank you so much for your feedback since we posted the first Update on Current Issues Dev Blog. We appreciate everyone’s interest into our communication and where we’re going with New World and we want to continue being transparent and communicative on how we plan to reach our goals and address outstanding issues.
Our top priority with server transfers is to address the edge cases that have blocked players from using their free transfer token.
While the vast majority of players were able to transfer servers without issue, there is a population of players who have been unable to use their transfer token due to ‘ghost contracts’ at the trading post. These edge cases require manual investigation and intervention.
To those players who are waiting to use their tokens until these contracts are resolved, a recent service change should have unblocked those with invisible open contracts. There is an outstanding issue with transfer blocks due to pending contracts which our team is working to resolve.
The first round of server transfers provided a lot of lessons for us to learn from, and we apologize that it has been at the expense of some of you joining your friends on a server of your choice. After transfers have been unblocked and our investigations into these cases are complete, we are looking to provide a second round of server transfers. Estimated timing is before the year’s end. We will keep you updated if that changes.
Our team is gauging interest in cross-region transfers. If you are interested in moving your character to a different available region (for example, your character is in EU Central but you would like to transfer to a world in US East) please add your details to this forum post.
It is important for us to get a solid understanding of what is most important to you, and how impactful this feature would be for everyone when making roadmap decisions. This is a feature in development, meaning that alongside your input and development, we need to perform validation and scale testing to reduce the chance of edge cases.
Server merges are on the horizon. But what does this actually mean? There are a few action items that need to be addressed before we are confident that merging worlds will be a net positive experience for our players.
We need to test our technology. We had tested world merges in Closed Beta which caused a persistence issue that has since been resolved, and we continue to test merges with our team and non-public worlds. Since Beta, we have addressed issues as they arise, and have added quality of life changes like a countdown timer for worlds set to merge. The Public Test Realm (PTR) provides us with our next opportunity, tentatively scheduled for Monday morning (PST), to further test this technology before using it in the live game.
When we are ready to take this technology to your worlds, there are a few things we look at in order to determine if the world is a candidate for merge, including but not limited to population size and overall engagement.
Tactically, worlds are merged within a world-set. This allows us to streamline the merge process by removing the requirement to check for multiple characters per player (this is why only one character is allowed per world set), as well as checking language recommendations (recommendations are made at the set level).
But there is more nuance to these merges. Once we’ve identified a world as a candidate for merge, we compare it to the existing worlds by reviewing elements like faction representation and overall population in the set to find the most optimal partner world. While we cannot guarantee exact matches, we make every attempt to choose worlds for merge that are complementary.
Players on worlds identified for merge will be informed in advance of the plan. Players with characters on a merge candidate world will not lose their progress (including gold, items, faction, and company); however, territories will belong to the companies on the partner world. For example, if World X is confirmed as a merge candidate, and World Y is identified as the partner world:
- Players on World Y are not impacted, other than an influx of players on the world. World Y territory ownership persists after the merge. Companies are compensated 50K Coin, which is 3.3x the cost of war, for loss of territory ownership due to a world merge.
- World X characters are relocated to World Y - characters, companies, housing, gold, and owned items remain intact, but territory ownership will not persist on the new world.
At this time we are not offering transfers to players after a world has been merged. This position may change as we learn more.
War can't be declared issue
There were a few reports of companies not being able to declare war despite feeling they had earned over the 10% influence threshold. We recently fixed a bug where, if many players from a faction all turned in PvP missions at the same time, the influence was applied to the race, but not credited to the company. That fix seems to have resolved most cases of this; if you are aware of other issues please let us know. We are also looking into displaying a company’s contribution % so there is more transparency on their progress versus the threshold, but no timeline for this yet.
We have also received a few reports of players being unable to select a tier of war camp. We are investigating why this is occurring but have not been able to track down the issue yet, so no timeline for a fix yet.
Thanks for your questions and feedback regarding our luck system! We’re happy to provide more detail here as to how the system works under the hood.
There are two ways we interpret luck:
- An overall scale that you can think of as a ratio of when things occur or a percentage chance to occur.
- A relative scale that has a movable odds range based on other values we add into it.
Things like enemies and searchable containers use Method #1 above, where anything in their drop list can occur, and your luck stat increases the likelihood of you getting the less common items in the list. In New World’s loot model, drop tables are divided up into overall rarities, with rarer groupings of items living “higher” on the roll table than more common items. There are entire sets of items that drop less frequently than other sets, and equipment is a great example of how we do this.
There are collections of equipment that live at different general probabilities: a “Common” set, “Family” sets, and “Elite” sets. Rarer still are the more context-specific Expedition sets and Named Items. Common items have the broadest possible perk roll variety, Family sets have slightly more narrow perk roll variety and a higher chance to roll perks, and Elite sets only come from Gold-Bar (elite) enemies and have narrower perk rolls and an even higher chance to roll perks. Expeditions items almost always roll some perks, and Named items come with a pre-set selection of perks that don’t roll.
Luck doesn’t increase your chance to get higher gear score rolls or roll more perks, but it does increase your chances of seeing item drops that have higher chances of rolling bonuses.
Gatherables (but not Fishing) use method #2 above. As your Luck stat increases, it gradually enables new items to drop from the tables. This means that if your luck values are totally unmodified, there are some items in those tables that it are impossible for you to obtain without a bonus. This is particularly useful for “AND” tables, or tables that give you more things as they roll higher. If we were to use this with “OR” tables, it would actually decrease or even eliminate your chances of getting items in the lower roll ranges of the table (so we don’t do that). We set up these tables to “open up” more as your base luck grows to avoid inundating lower-skill-level players with less-common items that they would have no use for until progressing much further in other, relevant skills. We also use it to plant little surprises and new things to find as you level your gathering skills!
Additionally, we don’t use percentages in our data notation, we use integer-based roll ranges to apply probability weights to the chances of a specific thing dropping.
For instance, let’s the roll range on regular tree is 100,000 (because it is!), but somewhere above that range, say 105,000, is a chance to get a fish (trees don’t drop fish, this is just an example). When you chop down that tree with unmodified luck, you have a 0% chance to get a fish. But if your luck was modified by say, 10,000, your roll range increases from 0-100,000 to 10,000-110,000, which gives you a (roughly) 5% chance to get that fish when you chop down the tree. If you only increased your luck by 5000, you would have a 0.00001% chance at that fish…but that’s why our luck increases from things like food and equipment are pretty chunky so we avoid cases where your luck value is “stuck” in an unfortunate “ultra low odds of a thing” state.
With gatherables in particular, increasing your gathering skill adds base luck to your roll, with Level 200 granting a total bonus of 2000 to your base rolls. There aren’t any cases in the game where not having a luck bonus will prevent you from getting an item as long as the associated Trade Skill is at 200. You can use food and equipment to further increase your drop chances, or even enable some items to drop for you “earlier” in your progression!
Thanks for the interest in our luck system! It was fun to answer it. See you in Aeternum!
Incentivizing Players to Join a Less Dominant Faction
To help balance factions we currently have 2 mechanisms in place. First, we give underdog factions extra influence to give them a better chance at earning the right to declare war. Second, we do not allow players to switch factions to the dominant faction. Very soon, we will be reducing the time between faction switches from 120 days to 60 days, which should help move some people into underdog factions.
We are actively discussing ways to incentivize players to join less dominant factions, but we don’t have a plan or time frame yet. A couple of the options we have discussed are gameplay buffs to underdog factions or a more target incentive to groups within the dominate faction to switch over for rewards if they successfully capture territories. Let us know what you think would most incentivize you!
Our Stance on Exploits
A bug is when a game mechanic doesn’t work as intended or described in game. Bugs are things that happen by accident to players and we aren’t interested in suspending or banning in the case of accidents. A bug becomes an exploit when players use it intentionally, repeatedly, or both to obtain an advantage over normal game behavior. In cases where it doesn’t seem very clear to an average player that something is a bug, when possible we’ll specifically identify particular bug use as an exploit to warn they will be acted upon.
An example might be a spawn bug. Let’s say there is a particular creature that only spawns once an hour. A player stumbles upon a sequence of actions that cause the creature to spawn instantly. The first time this happens is a bug. But if the player starts going through the sequence many times to spawn the creature and kill it for loot, they’ve become exploitive, using the bug to gain faster loot access than a regular player would.
If you have to ask many questions past this common sense layer (how many times? What if it’s the same sequence to force spawning but actually a different creature? etc) then you are likely in exploit territory. There are far too many variations here to cover with a blanket rule.
How do we penalize on players deliberately utilizing exploits to win wars or farm gear?
Usually our course of events is to suspend players temporarily first, then switch to banning if the behavior repeats. There are particularly egregious cases where we might fully ban even on first event, if we felt there was sufficient evidence it was done deliberately.
Both of these issues are separate from use of third party software to gain advantage in game. That is not a bug, and a player who is doing this should expect to be fully banned as it against the TOS.
Quest and Quest Design
We’ve been gathering data and feedback on quests and storytelling since launch, and we appreciate everyone who’s shared their thoughts on the forums and social media. There are many ways we want to improve the quest experience in New World, but your input is essential for helping us set priorities.
The most significant areas of concern we’ve identified are the lack of variety in quest dynamics, quests that require players to undertake long travel times, and the ways in which our storytelling in individual quests and across the whole of the game could be more compelling. Additionally, there have been several specific issues with long spawn times and excessive difficulties with some named enemies in both the main story and side quests.
The good news is that many improvements are already in-progress. A sample of some of the efforts under way right now:
- New task types integrated into existing quests in the main storyline, including wave events, destructible objects, and some light traversal mechanics
- More enemy variety and improved spawn scaling
- Major Enemies in the Main Story Quest Series adjusted to more appropriate difficulty (i.e. Well Guardian)
- New quests and quest givers spread out across existing zones, closer to the locations they’re asking players to visit
- New and improved quests in higher level zones.
- Some quest gating improvements to allow for more optimized travel times
- Tracker and Map updates to differentiate the various types of quests and missions
- The new storyline associated with the Varangian Knights, which will play out further in future releases
- New presentation methods to highlight major story moments in the game
We will also soon be releasing new quests to progress the main storyline through the showdown with the Tempest, along with some hints about where the main storyline will go in the future.
In addition to all these changes we’re working on right now, our broader quest strategy is also evolving. New World is different than other MMOs. The elements of survival, territory control, and crafting are some of the game’s strongest features, and as some of you have called out, the quests could be better integrated with these systems and activities, and that’s one of the guiding principles in the new quests we’re hoping to add in the new year:
Over several updates, we’ll be adding new quests and storylines centered on player tradeskills. Advancing skills like Mining, Leatherworking, and Cooking will unlock new quests at various thresholds. The quest givers for these will be located in new camps and outposts spread throughout Aeternum, and along with new skill-related storylines, they’ll offer special skill-enhancing rewards.
Weapon Mastery Quests
Similarly, we’ll be rolling out a new series of quests associated with each weapon type. These opportunities to track down and meet with masters of your chosen weapon type will lead to new personal stories and challenges for each weapon and of course, new unique weapon rewards.
New Expeditions and Features
New Expeditions and Features released in coming months will also introduce new stories and quests to accompany them. These quests will incorporate all the new dynamics we’ve developed in recent months and create a much more varied quest experience across the game.
We hope these goals and this direction are as inspiring for you as they are for us. We continue to welcome your feedback and input as we go forward. We are looking forward to exploring the potential of Aeternum over many years. What we have right now is just the foundation for what’s to come.
Representation and Character Customization/Design
When we talk about aesthetics especially for characters and player gear, we envision Aeternum as an immersive world that feels grounded in real history but also serves as a jumping off point into the fantastical. Our intent is everything the players encounter feels exaggerated and dramatic yet still believable; offering a sense of the familiar but also of otherness. Beyond just historical accuracy, we seek to bring to life how it might feel living on a supernatural island dealing with the various magical forces and dangers it contains. Like our players, our narrative brings people to this island from all over the world and we want our characters and gear to reflect that wide diversity. We also believe strongly in player expression and giving players a wide range of options, looks and styles to choose from.
Looking ahead we intend to continue adding more outfit variety both in cultural and narrative driven looks; some more grounded, historical and functional while others may feel more whimsical or supernatural in nature. Finding that balance is something we continue to experiment with for each outfit. Artistically we gravitate towards making a dramatic statement rather than risk being too safe in our designs. This approach may result in a few elements that feel outlandish to some but often will land us in a much more evocative and interesting visual space that we hope feels unique. We also intend to continue adding variety in outfits that offer a more feminine or masculine look that can be worn by all body types. As for character creation looking further ahead we have a few plans for how we can expand the available options as well as offer new ways to customize your character. Our goal is for players to be able to create a character that they can relate to and that fits the personality they want their character to convey.
We’ve been following the conversation on the forums and believe we understand the reasons players want a mini-map. Also we are aware that there is a perception if we implement mini-maps then players that don’t want them can simply turn it off, but in reality players may feel at a disadvantage without it.
Right now creating a mini-map is not a high priority for us as we have other items we feel are more pressing. The high level reasoning is that we have concerns with it meshing with New World’s action combat style and world design, that it could break immersion, may limit the drive for exploration, and there are technical limitations. We feel the compass fulfills the needs, fits the setting, promotes exploration, and supports combat.
Diving in to some specifics, a big part of our combat is situational awareness and the addition of a minimap may compromise this in a few ways. First, we are concerned that eyes may be planted on mini-maps as opposed to the play space. Second, if there are any combatants (AI or Players) on the mini-map, it could change how the game is played.
Another concern is that players may play the mini-map (or at least stare at it) as opposed to the game world which could have a negative effect on immersion. Once implemented, the desire for more efficiency will likely drive to adding gameplay elements like nodes (active and in-active), local wildlife, and players. Then gameplay could become more about efficiency and less about getting lost in Aeternum. At that point, we are playing a 2D game as opposed to this beautiful interactive world we’ve created.
Aeternum is built with landmarks, roads and vistas to drive exploration, not to mention key elements might be off the beaten path. If we had a mini-map, it could change open world behavior and potentially remove the natural exploration that happens now in the game.
On the technical side, you may wonder how a third party can quickly do this and the dev team says it is going to be more work. The reason is that the dev team has a minimum spec that we are committed to supporting. This will require rendering and art work to ensure it is performant.
We will continue to follow the conversation, gather more information and will periodically re-evaluate our position, as we do on many decisions.
All that said, we have discussed the matter with Overwolf and have decided to not penalize mini-map mods from this 3rd party, provided that they stick to the following rules:
As a general rule, the mini-map follows exact rules of compass and cannot give players an advantage of any type over the compass. Information to be used for display, even within the limitations expressed below, must come from the Overwolf API, which we may add to over time but can’t commit to at the moment.
The mini-map can:
- Show player position
- Show folks in group as we do on compass
- Only show node placement if they’ve unlocked that node via tradeskills, provided it is within the range that compass would display them.
- Only show AI that you’ve unlocked via tradeskills as compass and within range of compass.
- Show quests as they do on compass
At this time we can confirm that we have not banned anyone for using the mini-map mod from Overwolf. In the future, we may change our position on this and decide to add a mini-map or change our position on allowing Overwolf. If we were to change, we would give plenty of notice along with a designated grace period where would not ban players for continued use, but would take action after that grace period has ended.
One of the key elements of New World is player’s ability to change the world. To achieve that, we give players a lot of power to form organizations, take over territories, and manage town policies. But, with that power comes some risk that “bad actors” will use that power for self gain. We’ve tried to provide guardrails to ensure those bad actors don’t create too much loss - cap players coin to 500k, ability to set withdrawal limits for lower ranks, etc. but there have been a few cases of it happening recently.
In the future, we would like to give players more information (like a company leger) and more ways to control access (like the ability to chose company permissions). This should give players better tools to find and avert loss. But these changes are lower priority at the moment versus some of our initiatives.
Along with bug fixing/tuning and the planned changes for War/Territory Control , the team is starting on some next steps for combat in New World. Our initial focus will be in weapon swapping, dodge cancels, and attack input windows.
We are currently working on weapon swap responsiveness and making sure that it is more consistent throughout all of our attacks, as we want swapping weapons to be an integral and fluid part of combat. There are many times that you think you’ve swapped weapons, but you end up attacking with the currently equipped weapon instead. We are working to fix these situations and expand when you are able to swap your weapon.
Along with weapon swap, we are looking into our dodge cancel windows and attack input timings during recoveries of all of our attacks. There are some inconsistencies that are not intended. For example, you are able to dodge cancel out of some recoveries, but not others, and you are able to perform heavy attacks out of the recoveries of some abilities but not all abilities. Our goal is to make sure there are consistent input windows between all weapons and abilities.
Weapon swaps, dodges, and attack inputs are a major part of our combat system and we want to make sure they feel fluid and responsive. We’ll be rolling these changes out over the next couple major releases, so please continue to provide feedback and we will continue to make improvements.
In addition to the changes to combat responsiveness, we’re planning on a balance update in a future patch to adjust a variety of abilities and tune some of the lesser-used abilities to make a wider selection of abilities more viable, to further improve combat in Aeternum. We don’t want to spoil too much from this update yet, but know it’s in the works and on its way.
Weapon Balance Changes
For our November release, we have done a large tuning pass over all of our weapons and upgrades. Our goal for this release was to boost up abilities and weapon trees that we felt were being under-utilized while addressing a few individual over-performing abilities.
This patch also fixes many bugs and exploits across various areas of the game that you, the player community, helped us identify. They affect many areas of the game, including perks, duels, attribute threshold bonuses, navigation, Wars, Outpost Rush, and consumables. We think these fixes will help improve the flow and consistency of combat while providing a better overall experience to every game mode. As we work to complete additional combat improvements, we will continue to observe player feedback and experiences to further tune and improve usability and balance for future releases.
Here is a comprehensive list of updates that are currently in PTR and will be in for the November release. This is just the beginning of our adventures in Aeternum!
We’ve also created feedback threads for each weapon for these new changes. If you participate in the PTR, please let us know how they feel!
Weapon and Armor Perks
We are aware that there are some perks in the game that are not functioning as intended. We will be addressing these in the November Monthly Release. We will continue to monitor your feedback to ensure that if perks continue to not function properly, we will investigate the issue and work to resolve it. Also, previously we have stated that we had fixed a localization issue that marked certain perks and bonuses as 0%. We have revised and retested this fix and it will be released in the November Monthly Release.
Public Test Realm
On November 10th, we released our first iteration of the Public Test Realm for players to help us test our November Monthly Release. For our first Public Test Realm session, we focused on new Low-Level Enemies, the new Trading Post Experience, PvP Faction Missions, Void Gauntlet, and the Varangian Questline and Enemies. On Monday, November 15th, we will be testing Server Merges. Keep an eye out on the PTR section for an announcement.
Thank you to everyone who is helping provide feedback and bug reports for us to hammer down the November Monthly Release. We hope to offer more opportunities like this in the future so keep your eyes peeled.
Interested in joining in? As a current player in New World, the app should already be in your Steam library,. Download the PTR through the Steam Client and provide feedback and bug reports here.
The Void Gauntlet has manifested in Aeternum! Manipulate the powers of the Void to support your allies and debilitate your enemies with this magical DPS/support hybrid. It’s the first weapon to scale on both Intelligence and Focus, making it a great pairing with the Life Staff and other magic weapons. The Annihilation tree focuses on maximizing damage at close-range and revolves around Void Blade, a summoned blade of corrosive void energy. The Decay tree offers ranged healing and debuffs and revolves around Orb of Decay, a dual phase projectile that can debuff enemies and heal allies. With its arsenal of buffs and debuffs, the Void Gauntlet is perfect for group combat and can significantly bolster your allies at the expense of your enemies.
Void Blade: Summon a blade of Void energy that converts your basic attacks to melee. Tap Basic Attack to perform a quick slash that deals 100% weapon damage or hold to perform a thrust attack that deals 150% weapon damage. Both attacks inflict Disintegrate on successful hits, dealing 5% weapon damage per second and reducing damage absorption by 5% for 8s. Stacks up to 3 times. 15s duration. Costs 20 Mana.
Oblivion: Summon a circular rift of Void energy at your feet that deals 30% weapon damage per second to enemies and grants Empower to self and friendlies, increasing damage by 20%. 5m radius. 6s duration. Costs 30 Mana.
Petrifying Scream: Unleash a Void-infused scream, dealing 100% weapon damage, staggering and inflicting Root to enemies 5m in front of you. Disables enemy movement for 2s. Costs 25 Mana.
Orb of Decay: Fire an unblockable orb that passes through enemies, deals 100% weapon damage and inflicts Disintegrate, dealing 5% weapon damage per second and reducing damage absorption by 5%for 8s. Stacks up to 3 times. At max range, it transforms into a healing orb and returns, healing friendlies for 20% weapon damage per second for 5s. Healing scales exclusively with Focus. Costs 20 Mana.
Baleful Tether: Fire a projectile that tethers you to an enemy, Weakening it and Empowering you by 4% per second (20% maximum). The tether ends if the target moves beyond 15m. 10s duration. Costs 25 Mana.
Essence Rupture: Fire a projectile that inflicts Essence Rupture for 10 seconds, healing anyone that hits the target for 20% of the damage done. Does not apply to damage-over-time. Costs 25 Mana.
Crafting and Gathering
We are aware that some rare materials needed for crafting legendary items are dropping at very low rates. These include Beeswax, Runic Thread, Etched Handguard, Embossed Wrapping, and Empowered Counterbalance. We have an upcoming patch that will address most of these items and Beeswax will be addressed in a later update.
We are also aware of an issue with crafted magical weapons (the Arcana skill) that prevents them from being crafted at 600 Gear Score. This is due to one of the ingredients not applying gear score bonuses. We have fixed this in a future update by introducing an additional core material requirement (e.g. Leather, Wood, etc.) that can be used to add the additional gear score range required to reach 600.
Thank you for reading our second edition of Updates on Current Issues. We appreciate your continued support while we strive to make Aeternum your in-game home.
See you in Aeternum!