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New World PvP Scaling – What is it?

New World's PvP scaling is proving to be a contentious topic.

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Last Updated:

Update: The New World Open Beta patch notes say that the New World PvP Scaling is changed from the closed beta. Higher-level players will need fewer hits on a lower level player to kill them, while lower level players need more hits to kill higher level players. It adds more value to better geared and higher level players, but it shouldn’t prevent newer players from outplaying higher level players.


Original Story:

If you’ve been paying attention to the New World Closed Beta, you may have noticed an uproar regarding PvP scaling. The New World PvP scaling system is Amazon’s way of making open-world PvP relevant for all levels. The idea is to make New World PvP more skill-based, where weapon skills, gear score, and attributes provide only minor advantages. However, there has been some controversy, with many community members either supporting it or hating it.

Amazon Games has made PvP Scaling a core feature of New World, and there is no word on it going away anytime soon. We’ll do our best to explain how the PvP scaling system works and its pros and cons. That way, you can decide if the open-world PvP or declaring war on territories is right for you.

Just a disclaimer, Amazon Games is actively balancing the New World PvP scaling system. We know that Amazon Games are actively bug fixing and balancing the PvP Scaling system, as evident via recent beta patch notes, so take the formulas we highlight with a pinch of salt.

Damage Scaling

It is unclear how weapon damage factors into the New World PvP Scaling. The formula for Weapon Damage in PvE is understood to be base weapon damage + character attributes. However, in most PvP scaled encounters, it seems Light attacks deal approximately 10% of the enemy’s max HP. It implies that weapon damage is 10% of the max HP not taking into account damage resistance, armor, and Fortify. So, skills that have 120% weapon damage theoretically deal 12% damage plus any skill, attribute, or gear bonuses. There is more room to experiment as the system is not exactly perfect or clear at the minute.

What this means is that a player with 10,000 HP could take 1,000 damage per Light attack. This is evident in a recent viral Josh OG clip that surfaced (below). As you can see, the enemy player does roughly 400 damage per swing. If you take a look at Antony’s health, he has 4,300, meaning 10% of his health is 430. As expected, there are various aspects of damage mitigation that mean the player is doing slightly less than 10% damage. Some weapons also have a base damage range, preventing consistent damage output.


Armor Scaling

We have a much better idea of how armor scaling in PvP works due to recent patch notes for the Closed Beta. Before launching into the Closed Beta, Amazon patched armor scaling, addressing the fact that lower-level players had too much damage mitigation based on their lower ratings. With it fixed, it would imply that having better gear would contribute to taking less damage. The patch notes for the Closed Beta read:

  • Fixed an issue where the damage mitigation formula was causing an issue where a lower level player need a much lower armor rating to achieve the same damage mitigation as that of a higher level player.
  • This will fix the issue where low-level players had a huge advantage due to PvP damage mitigation.


Does that mean that Gear Score plays a factor in mitigating damage? It would certainly imply so. It is also difficult to work out how much damage Heavy armor mitigates compared to other armor values. It could mean that Heavy armor makes a minuscule difference considering the roughly 10% damage scaling.


If open-world PvP is designed to scale, then what room do players builds have?. If your attacks are scaled to roughly 10% damage, then speccing into more Constitution effectively offers nothing. Of course, it is going to be relevant against players much closer to your level gear score and in PvE, but lower level players will still hit hard to match your level. To some extent, Constitution is theoretically worthless if you plan on fighting lower level players.

However, for your main damage attributes, Constitution definitely is not worthless. Weapons in New World scale off attributes at a one-to-one level. For example, a Fire Staff gains one extra damage point per point in Intellect. Since Light attacks roughly equal 10% max health of the enemy, then the direct damage bonuses on your weapon’s damage output won’t matter all that much against lower levels. But the extra bonus coming from attributes like Critical Strike chance from dexterity will make a difference. As with Constitution, it will matter more players that are closer to your level, as stats and gear are much more closely matched (including in the 50v50 instanced content). Gear and stats can make such a big difference when you need the right build to get the job done.


So, what are the strengths of New World’s PvP scaling? Well, the obvious one is that New Players won’t get penalized for being new to the game and wanting to complete faction PvP missions. A core element of New World’s gameplay is contributing to the war goal in a region, with any player in the zone’s level range able to make a difference.

The other major strength of PvP scaling is it creates a skill-based system. Rather than having a max level character wrecking new players, there’s always a chance that the newcomer can outplay the veteran. Skill is key to Amazon’s Souls-like combat system.



Creating a PvP scaling system makes the 1-vs-1 interesting, but it means that 1-v-X fights are still an issue. If a few low-level characters group together, they can defeat a max level with ease. That extra gear the player has makes no difference when two people whale at a higher level opponent. Sure, skill can potentially outplay both players, but it still encourages death balls.

Healing is a major issue with PvP scaling. Some weapons have a healing effect based on the damage you do. Since lower levels are scaled to do much damage against higher-level opponents, then they can experience unnatural healing bonuses. Say for example both players have the same healing effect based on damage, then the lower level gets more healing since they do much more damage. This is something that needs addressing.

There is some hesitation from New World players as to whether PvP scaling could be abused. If recent WoW history is anything to go by, weaker gear could be preferred for providing better performance. In 2020, a World of Warcraft YouTuber named Rextroy advised avoiding gems to get improved stats in instanced Arena in 2020. Hopefully, he comes to New World and breaks the system as he has done with WoW many times before.


What is your opinion on New World’s PvP scaling system? Is it good for the game; is it bad? Let us know in the comments below! 

Staff Writer AT WEPC

Craig Robinson

Craig has spent several years in esports. He began his journey as a volunteer, writing about games he loved whilst studying at University. Upon graduating, he worked as a freelance writer, talking about esports and gaming for several years before landing in WePC's gaming section.

2 thoughts on “New World PvP Scaling – What is it?”

  1. Shamus Miller

    Turn it around and have two high levels vs one low level and you have the same death ball.
    Item slots for higher levels, stat bonuses which you get every 50 points in a stat such as Cons Grit at 300 meaning you cannot be stunned or knocked down during an ability attack. Can change the playing field greatly against a lower level player who cant use those slots and abilities. Its the one thing everyone who doesn’t like scaling ignores. They have an advantage they just refuse to see it since they arent curb stomping people.

    • Craig Robinson

      I totally agree with you. It seems like the more vocal minority that think grinding gear is worthy of praise over skill in PvP. If a lower level with less playtime outplays you outside of gear score scaling, gems, weapon mastery and other facets of the game then it is a learning experience.

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