I spoke yesterday about the fact New World is only three months away, and how we'd heard barely anything. One blog post since the game resurfaced felt pretty quiet on the PR front. It's with surprise, then, that I woke this morning to find blog post number two. In it, the development team talk about Settlements and Governence, and how territory control as a wider system works.

Effectively a lengthy FAQ, the blog post talks about everything from claiming a settlement, to being a Govener and what you can do when you are one. I think it sounds relatively similar to Path of Exile's node system, and - according to my sources - wasn't ever in Alpha in this form (quite different).

My biggest concern out of the post, are the Tower Projects. These activites, similar in principal to those in Guild Wars 2's Guild Halls, just look incredibly dull. Kill 20 Wolves? Obtain 20 animal fangs? It feels last minute, and ten years too old. 

While it's difficult to know from this blog post alone if it'll all work harmoniously, or if the removal of full loot PvP will make it a dull affair, I have to admit it does make me excited. Read on below!

Staking a claim and working together as a community is a critical step on the path to dominance in New World. Aeternum is divided into distinct Territories, many of which have their own Settlement and Fort. To find out more on how you can own a piece of Aeternum, we sat down with Lead Systems Designer, John Liberto, to discuss the ins and outs of Settlements and governance in New World.

What is a Settlement?

“Settlements are where players live, congregate, craft, trade, work on Town Projects, and support their Faction through Faction Missions. Death is not the end in Aeternum, so Settlements also serve as a respawn point for players unfortunate enough to have fatal mishaps on their adventures.“

How do you claim a Settlement?

“During the early stages of the game, players must choose between one of the three Factions (more on them in a future Developer Blog). Once you choose a Faction, you can create or join a Company. When a Company is created, it inherits the Faction of its creator. Companies can gain and control a Territory and the Settlement or Fort that it contains."

“If the Territory is uncontrolled, this is as simple as paying the claim fee at the Territory’s Fort. If the Territory is already controlled by a Company, the Territory must be taken through War, which can only occur between companies that belong to different Factions. We’ll delve further into War and its other related mechanics in another article, so stay tuned for that.“

What is the difference between a Settlement and a Fort?

“A Settlement is where players own homes, craft, refine items, trade, take Faction Missions, and socialize. A Territory’s Fort is the major point of defense for a Territory. It is what comes under attack during War (PvP) and Invasion (PvE), and it’s where players need to go in order to claim an unclaimed Territory.“

How do you become a Governor?

“The leader of a Company is called a Governor. Initially, a Company’s Governor is the person who created it. When a Company takes control of a Territory, the Governor of the Company also becomes the Governor of the controlled Territory.“

What can you do as a Governor?

“Ultimately, the Faction that a Company belongs to is the true ruler of a Territory. Companies act as a proxy for the Faction they are part of. As a Governor, your responsibility is to maintain control of your Territory for your Faction. You are also responsible for upgrading and maintaining the quality of life in your Settlement by starting Town Projects that result in Settlement upgrades when completed. Dues in the form of Territory Upkeep must be paid to the Faction your Company is a part of. In order to pay this Upkeep, the Governor can adjust taxes and fees in their Settlement so that travelers and Residents help to pay the Upkeep as they craft, trade, and live in their houses. They also can make their Settlement more desirable to own a home in by focusing on particular upgrades for particular types of players.“

What is a Consul and what can they do?

“A Consul is a Governor’s second-in-command. A Company can have as many or as few Consuls as it wishes; Consuls have almost all of the same permissions and powers as the Governor of the Company and Territory they control. Ultimately, a Consul can do the things a Governor might need to do in the Governor’s absence. Being a Governor can be a demanding role to play in New World; the Consul rank in a Company is a way for Governors to share some of their responsibilities with other Company members that they trust.”

What/how can you upgrade your Settlement?

“A Settlement’s Crafting and Refining Stations can be upgraded. Upgrading these stations enables higher-quality and more powerful items to be crafted by the players that spend their time there. Additionally, a Territory’s Lifestyle Buffs and Fort Upgrades are controlled by the Governor. Lifestyle Buffs are powerful, long-term bonuses for things like crafting and combat that only apply to your Territory’s Residents.

Residents are people who own houses in your Settlement. If a player does not own a house in a Settlement, they will not receive the Territory’s Lifestyle Buffs. Like the other Upgrades, Lifestyle Buffs are activated through Town Projects set by the Territory’s controlling Company.“

What are Town Projects?

“Town Projects are large scale activities people can work on together to upgrade their Settlement. Town Projects require a significant amount of effort and investment from not only the controlling Company, but also the players that call that Settlement home. Town Projects are activated by a Settlement’s Governor or one of their Consuls. When a Town Project is activated, players in the town can take missions that progress the Project towards completion. These missions award XP and currency (among other things), but more importantly they advance the Town Project. For example, let’s say you want to upgrade your Settlement’s Forge, which will enable Weapon and Armor crafters to create higher-quality arms and armor for their adventures. To do so, you would activate the “Upgrade Forge” Town Project and then you, members of your company, and anyone else living in town can work together to complete the project.“

How does a Settlement level up or down?

“Each time a Town Project completes, the Settlement levels up. Settlements begin to level down when Upkeep is not paid to the controlling Faction or if players fail to repel a Corrupted Invasion. We’ll dig into Corrupted Invasions more deeply on our road towards Closed Beta.

How do I join a Settlement?

“While you can use the services of any Settlement, you join one by purchasing a house there. Anyone can live in any house, in any Settlement, regardless of which Faction they are in or which Company currently controls the Territory. If the Territory changes hands, the residents of a Settlement are generally unaffected, aside to any changes to taxation, upgrades, and Lifestyle Buffs the new Controlling Company might make. We’ll have a lot more information on player housing in a future Developer blog. Whether you aspire to be a Governor, a highly valued citizen, or simply a wandering adventurer, Settlements are a place you’ll want to call home and fight to protect.”

Governors are the leaders of Companies and the rulers of Territories. They are in the unique position of being able to shape their dominion and the lives of the players who call it home. They can be a representative of the people or they can rule with an iron fist. What will you do with that power?

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Last Updated: Feb 11, 2020

About The Author

Lewis is a long standing journalist, who freelances to a variety of outlets.