As a game developer, your primary goal is to deliver the most engaging and best version of your interactive concept. It can be difficult to determine what your target audience is going to love, which is why some games are released and forgotten about almost immediately. That’s also why many indie developers have turned to releasing games in early access.
Ultimately, an early access game is, in some way, incomplete. Not in the sense that it’s missing assets, but the developer is looking for real-time feedback on how to best improve the experience by gamers playing, in most cases, a mostly complete build. The practice of releasing a game in early access works across most, if not all, genres. For your historical video game, it may even provide a solution to a problem other developers don’t have to face.
Testing the History: Is More Authenticity Necessary?
When players immerse themselves in an early access game, they expect to provide feedback about mechanics and issues regarding balancing. However, historical video game developers can request feedback that can help fine-tune authenticity. It’s not easy trying to blend historical accuracy with entertaining and engaging gameplay, and an early access release enlists the help of those that will be spending the most time in the world you’re building.
The live playtest gives players the chance to help you fine-tune how historically authentic the game feels. Do the weapons look and feel like they’re period accurate? Do the settings make sense and work with the gameplay? Do the historical aspects feel forced, or do they fit naturally into the experience?
As the developer, it can be difficult to be objective and see where your game needs some historical fine-tuning.
Early Access is Free Marketing
If you still need convincing regarding the benefit of early access, consider then that it’s essentially free marketing. Players talk, stream, and post about what they’re playing, whether it’s a finished product, early access title, or beta run. You can bet with your game in early access that it will wind up on Twitch or YouTube without you having to dip into your advertising budget.
The more it’s streamed and talked about, the larger the player base will get, and the more feedback you’re likely to receive about how the history works in your game.
Let Your Players Guide Development
Leveraging your player base will result in the best version of your historical game. While many developers use early access as a means of stress testing their product, you can build on that concept and have your consumers help perfect the authenticity of your historical setting, story, and elements.
At Epoch XP, we specialize in creating compelling narratives and provide research to give your game the kind of details that engage your players and create a resonant world they want to spend time in. If you are interested in learning more about our gaming research services, book you consultation today!