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New World – What Class To Play? New Player Guide

In this New World guide and video, I hope to help answer the question as to what class you should play when getting started in the game. While this MMORPG uses an open class system, which lets you mix and design whatever class you want, this video will help give you the information you need when deciding what weapons to pick, what attributes to focus on, and even what gathering trade skills benefit off your choices.

It’s important to note that there have already been a lot of changes in the Alpha and, as with any MMORPG, more changes will likely come in the future, so if you’re watching this video sometime in Fall 2021 and beyond, be sure to check the top link in the description for the New World Playlist, so you’re always getting the most up-to-date information possible.

Now, these guides and videos can tend to be on the longer side, so feel free to use the chapter markers in the playhead to jump to any area that interests you the most. We’ll start the video with high-level summaries of the information and we’ll dive deeper into the battle system later in the video.

Weapons Summary

Let’s start with a high-level summary of the 11 weapons that you can pick. You get two weapon slots that you can switch to at any time, and you’re able to use those skills independently of one another bringing your total active skills to 6 at any point. You also get light attacks and heavy attacks as well to round out your damage output, but beyond your weapon choices, you have your attributes which impact your weapons, character, and your gathering professions, and that’s before we get into gear which has perks that can modify your build in so many different ways.

The combinations are exciting and I’d highly encourage you to check out for their build simulator after you finish watching this video. I have some other content creators that you can check out linked below and I’ll talk about them later in this guide as well, so stay tuned for that.

New World Weapons

Let’s go over these weapons, shall we? There are currently 11 weapons in the game, and there are rumors of more to be added, but let’s focus on what we do know. It’s important to note that for weapons that only benefit from one key attribute, that attribute acts as a 1x multiplayer to the stat, but for weapons that have two attributes, the first one is at 0.9x, and the second is at .65x. More on that later.

One-Handed Weapons

Straight Sword

  • Benefits primarily from your strength attribute, but dexterity also contributes. The straight sword is currently the only weapon that will allow you to equip a shield with it, thus it’s a great all-around starting weapon for any player, offering both damage and defence. The sword has two skill trees:
    • Swordmaster which is going to focus primarily on your damage output.
    • Defender which focuses on defensive and tanking abilities. It’s important to note that the game offers gems that can be socketed into gear which will add a taunt ability to that gear, allowing more then just sword and shield tanking.

The Rapier

  • Benefits primarily from Dexterity, but Intelligence also contributes.

The rapier is a weapon that focuses on attacks and evasion. The Blood skill tree provides offensive skills that cause bleed or rend status debuffs, while the Grace tree focuses on evasion and mobility.


  • Benefits from strength and dexterity.

This is a very fun, one-handed weapon that’s useful in close-quarters, but also allows you to throw it at close-to-medium distances. The first tree is called Berserker and provides fast and hard-hitting melee attacks and offensive utility, while the Throwing tree allows for you to throw the weapon and cause rend, disease, or weaken debuffs. This weapon also has strong self-healing capabilities.

Based on the stat benefits alone, you can start to see how the sword and shield, plus hatchet already seem like a very natural pairing.

Two-Handed Weapons


  • Benefits primarily from Dexterity but strength also contributes.

Similar to the hatchet, the spear is a two-handed weapon that can be thrown, its Zoner tree provides throwing attacks and crowd control in the form of a knockdown and pushback, while the Impaler tree focuses on damage and bleed and rend attacks.

The Great Axe

  • Built solely on the strength attribute, the great axe focuses on damage.

The Reaper tree has a lot of single target damage, movement, and self-healing, while the Mauler tree grans access to AoE abilities such as whirlwind and some crowd control skills that allow players to pull targets to them.

War Hammer

  • Built off of strength as its primary attribute, this is a weapon that focuses a lot on crowd control.

The Juggernaut tree focuses more on damage, while the Crowd Crusher tree grants access to powerful stuns and knockdowns.

Ranged Weapons


  • Built to benefit just from the dexterity stat, and is a long-distance weapon.

The Skirmisher tree provides evasion, AoE, and poison attacks, while the Hunter tree focuses on damage.


  • Built for dexterity, but has intelligence for its secondary attribute.

The musket is the only weapon in the game that benefits from hitscan (meaning it hits right away, the projectile is instant vs that of the bow where the arrow flies to the target) it’s sharpshooter tree is focused on strong single target damage, while the trapper tree provides access to traps, bombs, and other Crowd control.

Magic Weapons

Fire Staff

  • Built solely off of intelligence and allows the player to cast spells, as well as attack at range.

With it, you have the Fire Mage tree and the Pryomancer tree. Both trees apply high damage and burning debuffs.

Life Staff

  • Benefits solely from focus, the life staff is a ranged weapon built for support.

Its Healing tree provides strong healing skills, while the Protector tree focuses on buffs for allies, as well as other healing utility.

Ice Gauntlet

  • Built solely off of intelligence and allows the player to cast spells and attack from range.

Both the Ice Tempest tree and the Builder tree are focused on damage, but the Ice Tempest tree is focused on AoE damage spells and slows, while the Builder gives you a stationary pet in the form of an ice pylon that attacks foes and provides buffs and debuffs, as well as a self-immunity escape spell and more crowd control.

Also, as we get into some of the attributes and numbers on them, these are subject to change, so again, check the top link in the future for updated guides and information.


Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence, Focus, Constitution


Strength governs your power with melee weapons. Heavy melee weapons, such as the War Hammer, scale their damage exclusively on Strength, while lighter melee weapons, like the Sword, scale their damage primarily on Strength but also slightly on Dexterity.

  • 50: +5% damage to melee weapon light attacks, +10% mining speed
  • 100: +10% damage to melee weapon heavy attacks, +20 encumbrance
  • 150: +50% stamina damage from melee weapon light and heavy attacks, -10% decrease in weight of mined items
  • 200: +10% damage on stunned, slowed, or rooted enemies, +10% mining speed
  • 250: Stamina regeneration continues while performing light and heavy attacks with melee weapons, +10% yield increase when mining
  • 300: Light and heavy attacks with melee weapons gain Grit, 25% chance to fully mine an ore node with a single swing


Dexterity governs the effectiveness with ranged weapons. Bows, Muskets, and Rapier attacks scale off a character’s Dexterity. Lighter melee weapons also see a benefit from Dexterity, but not as much as they gain from Strength.

  • 50: +5% chance to critical hit, +10 skinning speed
  • 100: +5% piercing damage, +20% haste for 3 seconds after skinning
  • 150: Dodging cost 10 less stamina, -10% decrease in weight of skinned items
  • 200: +10% bonus backstab and headshot damage, +10% skinning speed
  • 250: +10% bonus critical hit damage on stunned, slowed, or rooted enemies, +10% yield increase when skinning
  • 300: Ammo has +15% chance of being returned, guaranteed critical hit after a dodge roll


Intelligence governs your power with magical weapons, including any magical Perks your weapons might have. Both purely magical weapons like the Fire Staff, and physical weapons with a Magical Perk such as a Flaming Sword, grow in power based on your Intelligence Attribute.

+2.5% Magic Weapon Damage

Threshold Bonuses

  • 50: +10% damage to light and heavy magic attacks, +10% harvest speed
  • 100: +10% critical hit damage, 5% chance to gain 1 azoth when harvesting
  • 150: +15% to elemental damage, -10% decrease in weight of harvested items
  • 200: +10 mana after a dodge, +10% harvest speed
  • 250: +30% duration to damage of time spells, +10% yield increase when harvesting
  • 300: +30% damage on first hit on full health target, -10% reduction in Azoth travel cost


Focus governs your Mana recovery rate and your skill cooldown times. Higher Focus not only means that you can cast more spells more regularly, but also that you can use your cooldown-based abilities with a higher frequency.

+2% Mana Regen Rate

+0.5% Cooldown Reduction

Threshold Bonuses

  • 50: +10% mana regeneration rate, +10% fishing line tension
  • 100: +20 to mana pool, +10% yield increase when salvaging
  • 150: +20% healing output, -10% decrease in weight of fishing items
  • 200: +20% duration on casted buffs, +10% fishing line tension
  • 250: +30 mana on any self or group kill, +10% increase to caught fish size
  • 300: When mana hits zero gain 200% mana regen for 10s (60s cooldown), 10% cooldown reduction for Inn fast travel


Constitution governs your overall Health pool. The higher your Constitution, the more damage you can sustain before succumbing to your injuries.

+75 Max Hit points

Threshold Bonuses

  • 50: All health consumables +20% stronger, +10% logging speed
  • 100: Increase max health by 10% of physical armor, 10% reduction on durability loss for tools
  • 150: 10% reduction to crit damage taken, 10% decrease in weight of logging items
  • 200: +20% increase to armor, +10% logging speed
  • 250: 80% damage reduction when full health, +10% yield increase when logging
  • 300: +20% duration of stun, slow, and root spells, 25% chance to chop down a tree in a single swing




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