A message from Unravel
Posted by: Unravel
Early Access Expectations
This is NOT a soft launch of our game. Please think of Early Access (EA) as a development build that you get access to with a fresh database. We will be updating the game every week and you will get to see the game be built in front of your own eyes. You will probably have a lot of fun playing during Early Access, but we cannot stress enough that this is not a typical EA launch (like those Early Access Steam games you see these days).
It took a lot of work and effort to get our foundations in place to accomplish what we have. We could certainly not have done it with our Kickstarter demo. In our very expensive Kickstarter tiers we had, there was access to weekly development builds, which would have been far less exciting than this Early Access program we are now releasing. After seeing how many people wanted to play the game whilst it was still in development, we went back to the drawing board and changed our plans. We have reworked our development foundation, tools, and pipeline to support the program.
We have recently received some flack that Early Access is too expensive. We recognise that the price is high, and that it will not be worth purchasing on day one. We are not trying to sell this game to everyone, because it is still being heavily developed and a good year away from being at a state where we actively welcome you to come play our game. The cost of EA goes solely towards our development expenses, my Tesla and getting this game built. You are paying to support our game and get it built, with a nifty bonus that you receive access to our ongoing development builds.
Without raising the money, we have raised over the last two months, this game would be dead, and a large part of that money was raised to play in Early Access. It is easy to say that it is too expensive and that we should make it cheaper. But if we reduced the price, the game would not be around right now. Please wait until the Alpha if you cannot afford it. By then our game will be cheaper and overall, much better.
We have always been very transparent with how we will use our funds and how much we need. We have currently paid out three fortnightly payments to our developers since we started on the 10th of January. We said we needed US$ 15K for our team of 10 developers, and other costs. In our first month we achieved 11 developers with a fortnightly expenditure of US$ 7,150.
Recently we have acquired a UI/UX/2D Artist, 3D Animator, and an additional 3D Modeller. Our latest fortnightly costs were US$ 10,060. This puts the costs at just above US$ 20K a month, and we are able to cover the coming four months with the current funds we have raised all thanks to you.
This is not just a bunch of developers doing a few hours here and there. The majority of our team work 40 hours a week, with some doing more than that, unpaid for the extra. because passion.
With that said, barely two months of development has happened since the Kickstarter demo, and what we have achieved since then has been nothing short of incredible.
It is no secret we spent a lot of time removing all the asset store art, in favour of custom-built art for our game. This allowed us to pick & choose the art style of our game, rather than being limited to what's around. This became very costly & time consuming to do, but it has been the best decision we have ever made. Even then, four full-time 3D Modellers cannot replace everything in the game that fast, so here is what we have done with the visuals of our game:
- The old demo map was deleted and rebuilt/designed from scratch
- Character model, textures & rig for both masculine & feminine bodies
- Clothing, armour, weapons
- World props (indoor & outdoor)
- Environment Props (rocks, mountains, some trees)
- Crafting (nodes, stations)
- Terrain textures
- Animations for the new model
All models are modular, with optimised geometry and custom colliders
- New database & website API system
- New scripts/tools for devs
- New NPC dialog interaction UI/layout
- Controller support (not currently for the UI)
- Character selector
- Bank tokens for bulk trading
- New quest system
- Improved water systems & swimming
- Friends list
- Party system
- Pet collection/following
- All trees choppable
- Title changer
- Chat revamp (different chat types, PMs etc)
- Linking in chat (only Items for now)
- New settings options
- Lots of performance improvements
- Better movement netcode
- Anti cheat improvements
- New music & sounds
- Account section on the website & admin tools
- Bug report system (both in-game and on Website)
In the upcoming patch notes we will list rates/formula changes.
What has not yet been changed:
- Combat - requires a lot of animations we didn't have time to make since we only just got our animator. We don't want to rush this system either, expect it over the next couple of months.
- UI rebuild - same as above, UI artist is new!
- Non humanoid monster models (chickens, cows & other animals)
- Non equippable item models (jugs, ores, gems etc) & their icons
- Some trees
- Most animations
That's about it from me, also expect some kinks in the first couple of days in EA, potential server and client crashes and things not working will most likely occur but will be fixed fast. We will have at least 5 Worlds online for the start of EA. See you all soon!