New World, Amazon Game Studios’ ambitious mythical colonial-era open-world MMO, and the retail giant’s first step into the big leagues of game development has been delayed for the third time.
Amazon initially penciled in the game for release in May 2020, but subsequently delayed New World to summer last year, before finally pushing back release to Spring 2021. Today’s news shifts it yet again to an anticipated August 31 release date – well over a year on from the original launch window – further adding to Amazon’s troubled entry in the gaming space.
According to a freshly penned New World development blog, the delays to date have allowed the developer to spruce up quests, weapons, and armor variety, introduce fishing, hone the combat and crafting systems, expand the map with a new region, and prop up the mid and end-game with extra content. Yet, Double Helix needs additional time to implement ‘substantial improvements’ alongside some finish-line polish and fine-tuning.
We’ve been hard at work on compelling end-game features we believe are important to include at launch. These features won’t be ready for the Spring timeframe that we had communicated. With that in mind, we will release New World on August 31, 2021. With this extra time, we’ll be able to add these substantial improvements while polishing and fine-tuning the whole game before we open Aeternum’s shores to the world.”
New World Closed Beta
Interested players can expect to sample the improvements – not in Spring as initially planned – but in a closed beta set to start on July 20, 2021. The closed beta will grant access to a host of new features and content, including a new end-game zone known as Ebonscale Reach. Additionally, players can look forward to five-player instanced adventure Expeditions, and 20 vs. 20 player Outpost Rush battles.
Finally, you can find out more about these over on the New World development blog here. Or if audio-visual is more your cup of tea, you can watch game director Scot Lane walk through the reasoning behind the delay below.
Do you think this delay will be worth it? Or will it potentially be another misstep on Amazon’s part? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!