Last night, I hit level 30 in New World and am going strong. I’m definitely behind the leveling pace of those who started on release day which is fine by me. I’m not one to race to max level. Enjoyable MMOs don’t grow on trees so I prefer to savor the journey when I find one I like.

I don’t really have anything significant to complain about thus far. There are minor issues such as input lag during peak periods, slow spawning named mobs, and if you choose to quest continuously, you will feel the repetitiveness of the mechanics. For the latter, however, I have so many other things to do that it simply isn’t an issue for me. In fact, I sometimes need to remind myself that I might want to go level a bit. Harvesting while exploring feels so immersive, relaxing, and natural I spend more time at it than I intended some evenings.

Being halfway to the maximum level is more a by-product of having fun in a beautifully rendered world with an amazing soundscape.

Today, for example, I will focus on doing quests. In particular, I want to run through Faction Missions to purchase several Rune of Holding, an essential item for crafting bags and storage containers. Making money from crafting is a bit touch and go. Because players aren’t restricted to a set number of harvesting and production professions, many are choosing to do it all, making it difficult to make a profit on common items. What I’m able to sell consistently are the items that can’t be produced or harvested – the refining materials that come from looting caches. I’ve earned most of the gold by selling 50% of what I collect and reserving the rest for my own crafting needs.

For me, being halfway to max level this quickly after release is a credit to the level of addictiveness New World can trigger. Every single thing you do has value. Other than walking, every single activity generates XP, and even walking around the world does if you harvest along the way. At this point in the journey, I can say it’s my intention to play beyond the max level to end game activities such as participating in the territory wars and world PVP. The only thing that can upset the apple cart, will be what AGS does with the cash shop.