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Image courtesy of Amazon Game Studios

Amazon Game Studios' MMO "New World" was finally released Tuesday, following a bumpy development cycle from the embattled game maker.

The details: "New World," available for PC, strands players on an island called Aeternum where "the fundamental laws of life and death are broken."

  • The game allows for solo adventuring or team-ups with other players as factions trying to gain control of the island.
  • According to Steam, the game currently has more than 700,000 concurrent players, making it the top game on Tuesday.
  • It's experiencing some launch day hiccups with login queues and server issues, though the developer notes its team is working on them.

The big picture: Amazon's track record with games is rough, and it's relying heavily on "New World" to count as a win.

  • Amazon Games vice president Christoph Hartmann told the New York Times that the title "has to be our breakthrough game — there’s no doubt about it. Just for morale of people, at some point you want to see some success."
  • "New World" was originally set for a May 2020 release date, before several delays pushed it back.

Despite Amazon's deep pockets, the company has struggled for nearly a decade now to successfully break into the games sector.

What's next: The game is off to a strong start — a positive sign for Amazon Game Studios' future in this industry.

  • "I have no indication that the company is getting tired of its gaming division, I just see support left and right," Hartmann told GamesIndustry.
  • "Once we deliver a big hit, which I think 'New World' will be, we'll just get even more support because we've proven ourselves."

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
Updated Oct 25, 2021 - Technology

Report: Amazon shortchanged workers on leave

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Amazon employees allege that they have been shortchanged pay while on leave, according to a New York Times investigation published Sunday.

Why it matters: Much of the recent spotlight on Amazon — along with Google, Apple and Facebook — has been over competition and privacy, but labor concerns have been growing across the industry as well.

Amazon warehouse workers in New York file petition to hold unionization vote

Amazon workers and their supporters rally outside the National Labor Relations Board's regional office in Brooklyn, New York City, after filing a petition requesting an election to form a union. Photo: Gabby Jones/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Amazon warehouse workers in New York City filed a petition on Monday with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to hold a vote on unionization.

Why it matters: The move comes six months after an organizing effort was defeated at Amazon's distribution center in Alabama.

23 hours ago - Sports

The World Cup frequency debate

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The long-simmering debate about doubling the frequency of the World Cup has reached a fever pitch.

Driving the news: More than a dozen European nations have threatened to quit FIFA if it changes the World Cup to a biennial event — a strong statement that comes roughly two months before an official vote.

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