Steam Early Access build is live

The Steam Early-Access version of Satellite Reign has been unleashed to the masses today. This build has the number 0.2.7 and is an updated version of what was earlier released to alpha/beta tier backers. Those people who have not backed the game on Kickstarter or later through the Satellite Reign website can now purchase Early Access on Steam.

It is worth noting that the game is still fairly incomplete and far from finished at this point. Those of you considering to spend some money on this Early Access version should be aware that this is still work in progress and that you can not expect a smooth and polished experience at this point.

First reactions from players popping up around the internet seem to be predominantely positive. Similarly to the earlier alpha-/beta-releases, people express praise for the look and the atmosphere of the game, but note lacking features, low framerates and occasional bugs (which is not unexpected in an Early Access release).

Whether 5 Lives Studios have reached their goal of releasing by the end of 2014, as stated in their Kickstarter campaign, is perhaps open to debate. While they have technically fulfilled the promise by releasing something before the end of 2014, the reality is that the game is far from done at this point. What looked like a 1.5 years development cycle at the time of the Kickstarter campaign now looks more like a 2 year development cycle, with a final release expected for the first half of 2015. We are therefore realistically talking about a delay of ca. half year, which is actually not bad compared to other Kickstarter funded games (and video games, in general).

It does seem a bit odd though that they are on the one hand insisting that this is still a “pre-alpha” build, but at the same time rushing to make it available to the general public on Steam. I would have expected this to be in “beta” and feature complete (although not yet tested and balanced) when it is released to the public. I just hope this is not a bad sign, as it could be taken to indicate that they need the additional funds from the Early Access sales to finish the game.

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