[Update: 2:57pm PT] Amazon have deployed a fix which should be live in all regions that "should resolve this issue and prevent players from abusing and exploiting this feature," a post on the New World forums reads.
"Earlier today, we discovered an issue where players were able to post images and other links in the chat that resulted in unsavory behaviour.
We have enabled a fix that should resolve this issue and prevent players from abusing and exploiting this feature. This should already be enabled in each region.
Thank you for your patience while we investigated and resolved this issue. See you in Aeternum!"
Original Story Below:
New World's hits keep coming. As Amazon works furiously to fix bugs that get introduced with each successive patch, new issues are being uncovered by players everyday. The latest is an exploit that is based around the chat box, one that could see a giant sausage grace your screen - or worse.
Intrepid MMO players are finding myriad ways that New World can be broken, and while this latest one is slightly humourous (and not necessarily unique to New World), it could have massive implications for gameplay and security.
Reddit users noticed that the chat box could be manipulated using a few lines of code to start posting pictures of, say, the in-game sausage icon. While this is seemingly innocuous, the fact that this is possible is down to how the chat works. It seems New World's chat allows for HTML code, but it doesn't quite stop there.
We reached out to Amazon this morning for comment on this issue. Our representative confirmed the team was aware of the problem, and we'll update this story should AGS comment further.
In a new video this morning, MMO YouTuber Josh Strife Hayes showcased the issue with fellow MMO YouTuber Callum Upton. The sausages aren't as huge an issue as the fact that a player can send a single line of code in the chat which, when a player hovers over it in the chat box, will crash their game. As Upton explains, the chat box in New World is effectively an HTML container, and the messages themselves are code inside that container.
"Now what [New World's] got is the text frame, which is an HTML frame, and each message is a box inside of that," Callum explains in the video. "Now what they've forgot to do is say, 'Hey - don't allow any boxes inside these boxes.' So the text you're putting into the chat is being treated as HTML code."
As such, players are able to not only pull images from the MMO's database to grace the chat with pictures of sausages or whatever their fancy, but even go so far as to cover the screen with the yellow "Image Not Found" icon, which appears for everyone near the player. This could potentially be ruinious in PvP where positioning and seeing your target is kind of, you know, important. New World's combat is already too busy and hard to tell exactly what is going on among the mess - and then throw in giant yellow boxes that impair your vision further.
However, that's not even the worst part here, as it seems that a single line of code could cause the players client to crash if done correctly. We won't explain exactly how to do it here ourselves, but suffice to say the code causes the client to loop whilst trying to find a bit of data in the code. When it can't and keeps looping, it eventually causes the client to crash entirely. All because you hovered over a piece of text in the chat.
This could be potentially serious as anyone can spam this in global chat, making it seem seemingly harmless as if they are selling an item or showing off an epic new drop. And the minute you hover over this it crashes your game.
New World, like any game, is bound to have issues - especially ones as large and complex as an MMO. However, with the problems cropping up from the client-authoritative invulernability exploit to crouching in a healing well to basically uber-heal you, it's starting to effect the game in ways that could drive players from Aeternum. Some players are already asking Amazon for rollbacks, as territories fought over and lost in wars due to exploits is not fun for anyone involved (unless you're the one exploiting, I guess).