Pre-Alpha will be the first public step in the game’s history. It’s planned to be released in about two months time. The important part is it’s not the same as Early Access. Unlike Early Access, Pre-Alpha will not be accessible to everyone. It will have no story, only a few basic quests, couple of minigames, small map and a lot of bugs.
There are several goals behind releasing Pre-Alpha, and those are:
- Test the game with real non-biased players (both gameplay viability and QA testing)
- Gather feedback from those players
- Gather gameplay data (what people are actually doing in the game)
- Allow those excited about the game to support us both in development process and financially
There will be limited number of keys available for purchase at the beginning, so only the biggest enthusiasts will have the opportunity to see the first playable version and tell us what they think. Such players are the most valuable to us at that point. Thanks to their enthusiasm and genuine trust in the very concept of the game, they are invested in the game’s success. And if they decide to go for the Pre-Alpha and to be actively helping us make the game the best possible, they will truly leave their mark on the final game. They will be a part of Vestige of the Past. To recognize that, we will include a few of the most active community members in the credits.
If there is a higher demand for keys and everything goes well in the game’s development, we will work with invites. Those with the access to the game already will have the opportunity to invite their friends to purchase the access as well. These invites will be limited and getting them might be conditioned by some activity.
Early Access will be the second step and the first without any limitations. At the beginning, it will be only slightly more advanced compared to Pre-Alpha. We will be releasing regular updates bringing new parts of the map, new minigames, new content, more complex quests and, of course, less bugs. Early Access will be sandbox only. It will not have the story nor any of its quests.
How long after the Pre-Alpha until the Early Access is released? We honestly couldn’t say at the moment. It all depends on how well will be the Pre-Alpha received and how much feedback we will gather. The plan is to have the Early Access ready within a couple of months from the Pre-Alpha release.
The goals for Early Access are the same as for pre-alpha, just in bigger scope so we can listen to a large group comprised of very different people with different mindsets. It will also allow us to put in all the care we want into making the game the best possible. For a small and self-funded game dev studio such as ours, this is otherwise not possible.
Full game is the ultimate goal currently being scheduled for 2018/2019 release. It will bring the complete story mode. Other than that, it will be the same as the latest Early Access version. The full game will of course also include the sandbox for people to fool around in.