Most games see their player numbers decline in the weeks following release, but rarely in figures as large as what Amazon’s New World is experiencing. The MMO has reportedly been hemorrhaging 135,000 players every week since arriving on September 28, which works out at around half a million people abandoning the game.
New World had been the number two game on Steam’s most-wishlisted chart before its release. That anticipation was reflected a few days after launch when concurrent player numbers hit 913,027, but as Steamcharts’ stats show, things have been declining rapidly since then.
Forbes worked out that, based on figures for each previous Sunday, the number of people playing New World simultaneously has been dropping by around 135,000 each week. The good news is that the trend does seem to be slowing, albeit only slightly: it peaked at just over 404,000 last Sunday, while the previous Sunday it was 508,000 players.
Despite the initial popularity, New World arrived to reviews that ranged from average to pretty good. PC Gamer said it was held back by abysmal PvE and a boring world, and PCGamesN criticized the humdrum and frustrating quest design. It has a user score of just 4.6 on Metacritic, while the 74% of good Steam reviews gives it a Mostly Positive rating.
In addition to finding faults within its game design, players have been complaining about New World’s many bugs, including one that allowed the generation of infinite gold, prompting Amazon to shut down New World’s economy controls to prevent the glitch.
We’ve seen several games lose a worrying number of players post-launch only for them to return once the game is patched/updated and has received extra content—No Man’s Sky being the most notable example. As it’s an MMO, New World will likely be a very different experience 12 months from now. Amazon will just be hoping that enough players stick around until then.