Amazon's new multiplayer online game, "New World", got off to a roaring start Tuesday for its release, a test for the tech conglomerate seeking to break into this fast-growing sector.
One tracking website showed over 700,000 people were playing at 1800 GMT, making "New World" the most popular game at that moment, according to the website Steam DB.
"New World" takes place on the imaginary island of Aeternum, which players from a civilization akin to the mid-18th century West must conquer.
The title is a so-called "MMO" (Massively Multiplayer Online) game which can bring together thousands of players and sells for $40 in the United States.
On the Amazon-owned video platform Twitch, which is popular with gamers, about 900,000 people were watching videos of the new game.
This is not Amazon’s first foray in the gaming world, having already launched in early 2019 "The Grand Tour Game", but which the company withdrew in 2020 after a poor reception from critics and players.
By October 2020, Amazon had also discontinued its game "Crucible," which was released only a few months earlier in May.
The New York Times says Amazon has already spent several hundred million dollars in the development of video games, without real success until Tuesday.
"New World" has to be "our breakthrough game — there's no doubt about it," Christoph Hartmann, vice president of Amazon Games, told the paper.
"Just for morale of people, at some point you want to see some success," he added.
In addition to game publishing, Amazon has been active in the industry for several years.
It bought Twitch in 2014 and in 2020 launched Luna, a subscription-based online video game platform.