Development Roadmap – From Alpha To ReleaseJuly 11th, 2018 at 11:36 am
An ambitious roadmap for an ambitious MMO. Discover the schedule of playtesting till full release, plus all about Alpha 1!
Hi, fellow gamer and MMO enthusiast!
Since we started our Kickstarter campaign, a development roadmap has been one of the updates most requested by the community. In the beginning, we were wondering whether to focus on Alpha 1 or provide an overview from now till full release. In the end we came to a conclusion: why not both?
So, without further ado, let’s get to the point – with a small clarification first!
Development Phases VS Testing Phases
The development of Fractured from now till full release is split into 4 large periods of time, called development phases (or cycles). In chronological order, they’re named Alpha Phase 1, Alpha Phase 2, Beta Phase 1, Beta Phase 2.
Here’s a recap of the cheapest pledge packs you can buy to get access to the game within each development phase:
- Knight (€200 / €150 Early Bird): Alpha Phase 1
- Patron (€100 / €90 Early Bird): Alpha Phase 2
- Founder (€60 / €50 Early Bird): Beta Phase 1
- Recruit (€25 / €20 Early Bird): Beta Phase 2
Within each development phase, we’re going to run several time-limited tests, spaced out by some downtime during which we can focus on integrating feedback and completing new features.
The phase we’re currently under is (quite obviously) Alpha Phase 1. The first test planned for this phase is Alpha 1 – Test 1, and it’s coming soon: December this year!
Below you can find an infographic with the expected starting dates of each testing phase from today until full release.
Before moving on to the next point, a couple caveats on the info displayed above.
Yes, it takes time to build an MMO. Whoever is telling you “we’re making an ambitious MMO and it’s going to hit full release in one year!” is either overly optimistic or downright lying. Or is a AAA studio that has deployed a 100+ people team on the project since the start, but that’s a different story. We’re taking the honest route: it’s going to take 3 years more to get Fractured to full release. While it may seem long, we’re committed to making the game already enjoyable in Alpha 1, which is doable – more on this in the next section!
Also, the time estimates above are based on a multitude of forecasts – from revenue streams and team size at any given time to various technical factors. While we’re trying to be as precise and realistic as possible, some predictions may prove to be wrong, causing changes in the schedule (negative or positive). Were those to happen, we promise to be totally open to you on the reasons why and on everything that’s going on behind the scenes.
Alpha Phase 1
And now, let’s get into the details of Alpha 1 – what it means for us and what you should expect from it if you’ve purchased the Knight pack or higher in our Kickstarter campaign.
In a nutshell, the aim of Alpha 1 is to complete all the core features of Fractured, which will become playable over time in 4 planned testing phases. It’s a pivotal period in the development of the game, where features will be iterated on until they play smoothly and find the approval of the community. By being part of it, you’ll have the unique occasion to be able to shape the foundation of the game through your feedback!
Our aim for the very first testing phase, planned for December this year, is to have an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) that can already provide a meaningful experience to you and to the publishers that have shown interest in Fractured. You’ll be able to gather resources, craft, build, enjoy PvE and PvP – in two words: have fun!
Races & Planets
As stated in the first SOTG update, Humans and Syndesia have been the primary focus of our work so far. This is because Syndesia is the most varied of all planets (in terms of possible biomes), and it’s the middle ground between the PvE/cooperative ruleset of Arboreus and the PvP/competitive one of Tartaros.
For the first testing phase in December this year, it’s indeed likely you’ll be able to play as a Human only. We’re going to implement a unique temporary ruleset for Syndesia as long as it’s the only planet, leaning on the cooperative side, to make the testing of crafting, towns and PvE easier.
Over the course of Alpha 1, we’re going to bring all the three planets and races to life, building on what you were already able to see in the first teaser video and the Kickstarter video. Given how many of you are here because you’re enticed by the Three Races, Three Gameplays paradigm, which is undoubtedly one of the most unique features of Fractured, you can be sure it will be given the due priority!
We’ve spoken about them at length in the last Q&A livestream linked above.
This feature will already be live in Test 1!
Crafting in Fractured can be roughly divided into two sections:
- Primitive/Survival. Includes all the items (mostly primitive weapons and basic tools) that can be crafted directly from your inventory, or through simple crafting stations that can be placed anywhere in the world. It’s central for new players who aren’t part of a town or haven’t claimed any land yet, but also if you happen to die and resurrect in a faraway location, allowing you to quickly get back on your feet.
- Advanced. Includes all the items that are created through complex processes that require crafting stations which can only be placed in claimed areas. Metalworking is likely the most representative example of advanced crafting.
The former will be quite complete in Test 1 already, the latter more simplified, to be expanded during Alpha 1.
Together with crafting, town building will be king in Test 1 of Alpha 1. It can roughly be divided into the three sections:
- Construction. The possibility to erect public buildings, NPC shops, and player houses.
- Governorship. The powers of a Governor to control a town and the political system that comes with it.
- Conflict. Town conquests, sieges, open-field battles – the whole competitive Guild VS Guild package.
Points 1 and 2 will be there in Test 1 (the latter in a minimalist fashion), with lots to be expanded later on during Alpha 1. The conflict side will likely see the light towards the end of Alpha 1.
The Knowledge System
The Knowledge System is another big reason why many of you are following Fractured – we know that.
As much as we’d love to have it already in Test 1, that’s hardly possible, since it requires all the other systems to be in place (with a decent amount of content) to make sense. You need plenty of creatures to interact with, locations to explore, and so on. Therefore, it will be implemented later during the Alpha 1 cycle.
That’s it. We hope we’ve been able to give you a good overview of what’s coming in the next, exciting months.
Stay tuned for the spotlights on player-run towns and keep up the awesome support for our Kickstarter – 57% funded, 12 days to go… We can make it happen!