Q: Won't all the new players just get pwned by the older players?
A: No, in PvP battle player armies are matched together based on army strength. If an older player wants to attack the weaker armies of new players, they will have to create a weaker army of their own. New players are also safe from attack until they reach a certain point in the quest storyline or in city development, or they attack another player.
What determines army strength?