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New World starting zones: which is the best starting zone?

The pros and cons of every starting zone in New World

Which is the best starting zone to get in New World? Unfortunately, at the time of writing, you can't choose or change your New World starting zone. Once you've joined a server and created your character you play through a brief prologue, and then the game randomly spawns you into one of its four starting locations.

The only way to change your starting zone is to re-start the game afresh with a new character and hope for a different random outcome next time — which isn't guaranteed. (My fellow guides writer Hayden spawned in to First Light an improbable number of times in a row while testing this.) But how do you even know if you want to start over or not? In this guide, we go over the pros and cons of different New World starting zones.

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What are the starting zones in New World?

The island of Aeternum is divided into 14 different regions, but new players will only be able to spawn into four of them:

  • Everfall
  • Monarch's Bluffs
  • Windsward
  • First Light

All starting zones are contiguous, and are in the central-to-sothern part of the map. This is pretty significant, since if you're playing with friends, there's no way to ensure that you spawn in the same location. Meeting up is therefore going to involve trekking to an agreed meeting place, but at least you won't be literally on opposite ends of the map.

A map of Aeternum in New World, focussed on the starting zones in the southern part of the map.
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Which is the best New World starting zone?

New World starting zones are clearly designed to be fairly equal — there's no massive advantage given to players who spawn into any particular zone over the others. However, there are a few characteristics that set the different zones apart. We'll leave you to decide whether it's worth restarting your game over any of them.

Everfall is considered the best starting location in the game by many players, thanks to its central location on the map and the abundance of resources you can find there. Windsward is also popular for many of the same reasons: though it's smaller than Everfall it's also the dead-centre of the four starting zones, making it the easiest place to meet up with friends. Both zones are convenient to many of the early-game quests, meaning that there's less dangerous travelling around early on if you spawn into one of these.

However, the downside to the popularity of these two zones is that they quickly become very busy. Regardless of where they spawned in, other players are likely to flock to these two regions as soon as they can, and suddenly those plentiful resources are being picked clean very fast. For this reason, some players (particularly those who are re-starting New World) actually prefer the other two zones.

Monarch's Bluffs is a mountainous area with very generous sheep spawns, which can be very valuable for feeding and clothing your party early on. First Light is perhaps the least desirable starting zone, since it's one of the island's southernmost zones and is home to some very angry undead baddies in places. However, it does have excellent iron vein spawns to support your weapon smithing, and due to its relative unpopularity you'll face less competition for resources and real estate from other players.

That's all we have to share about New World starting zones for now, but why not take a look at our guide to the best New World character builds before you go? Elsewhere, we're keeping an eye on the developing situation with New World character transfers, which are expected to be added to the game within the next couple of weeks — and will, in theory, save you the trouble of deleting your character before you can restart your game.

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