The question was posed on the New World subreddit: Why do you play New world over other mmos?
There were a lot of great answers in the thread, but wanted to weigh in on my top reasons for New World. As background I never intended to play New World. I happened into one of the early New World preview events while playing the Crowfall beta. My normal road to an MMORPG involves following it for years through development and betas before I jump in. To say I was pleasantly surprised by New World is an understatement; one backed up by my almost 4,000 hours of play time!
So what keeps me in New World (which is likely now my most played game ever)?
First is the combat system. I never fancied myself for action combat (getting old with slower reflexes), but after playing New World's combat I really can't see myself going back to tab targeting. I tried Final Fantasy 14 for a brief period and while I conceptually like the global cooldown slower combat model it just ended up boring me.
Not only is the combat system action based but it also does NOT do the typical MMORPG thing with five hotbars and fifty choices at any given time. Players have two weapons and only three abilities per weapon. Then there are four consumable slots (and next patch you can no longer use consumables from inventory in combat). Add in the light/heavy attacks from left click, dodging, and that is a max of ten possible actions to take. That is the sweet spot.
The combat is also based on the gear you have equipped. No classes. If you want to tank; put on heavy armor and grab a shield. If you want to use a Firestaff and a Musket; go ahead. There is a ton of opportunity to carve out the way you want to play with the weapons and armor you want to. Not everything works great but it does work and my favorite builds prove that point. I run heavy armor Firestaff/Sword and Shield and do everything from PvP to DPS and tanking in PvE expeditions.
The second big thing I love about New World are the graphics and audio. The game looks and sounds amazing. It is hard to go back to other games or even look at newer games that are nowhere near the visuals of New World. The sound and visuals of chopping down a giant tree in New World are unmatched!
Then the third, and biggest attraction, for me is that I have the same opportunity as any other player to make it to the end game progression without having to be a hardcore-focused player. Don't get me wrong; I play the game a lot so I am not casual in that aspect, but I am also not a tryhard trying to cut a minute off an M3 completion time or have my VoDs reviewed so I can make a war roster. I can play the game the way I want and make progress and end up in the same end game spot as any other player.
I find New World to be rewarding to how I play MMOs and that is the top reason I stick around.