Amazon's massively multiplayer online title New World has been delayed again but this time only by around a month, with the game now expected to launch on PC on 28th September.
Announcing New World's fourth delay in a statement posted to Twitter, Amazon Game Studios wrote, "We are humbled by the support New World received from players around the world throughout closed beta. During beta, more than a million adventurers played more than 16 million total hours... The passion and enthusiasm you've shown for New World validates the work we've put in over the past year, improving the game based on your feedback". [UPDATE: Amazon has now corrected itself to say this was 25m total hours.]
"We want New World's launch to be a smooth and fun experience for all players," the studio continued, "and that means making some improvements based on what you encountered during closed beta. So we're going to take a few extra weeks to smash bugs, improve stability, and polish the game." This, it says, means a new global launch date of 28th September.
"This was not an easy decision to make," Amazon concludes. "We know this isn't the first time we've changed our launch date in pursuit of quality, and that it can be disappointing to wait a bit longer. But we want to be sure we deliver the highest quality game possible at launch."
It's especially crucial New World makes a good first impression at launch, of course, given it arrives after a string of video game failures for Amazon. Last October saw the company cancel multiplayer action game Crucible - five months after its release and four months after its unprecedented un-release - and this April brought news that Amazon's Lord of the Rings MMO was no longer in development following a dispute with Chinese mega-corp Tencent.
The good news for Amazon is that, alongside substantial interest in New World's closed beta, early impressions of the MMO have been positive, despite concerns over the developer's future plans for paid in-game boosts. Eurogamer's Robert Purchese enjoyed what he played of the game last month, saying "There's something refreshingly old-school about New World, something a bit Ultima Online... If you know what you're doing, glory in New World is there for the taking, and hardcore players love that."
We'll have a clearer idea if New World's nearly 17 months of delays have ultimately made for a quality MMO experience when its planned 28th September launch finally rolls around.