Early Access has officially been underway since last Friday, and we've seen a huge influx of new members to our community. If you're just joining us for the first time, we wish a warm welcome as you begin to explore our world. If you're a testing veteran who's been with us since Alpha or Beta, we hope that you're enjoying the leveling experience, questing, and new content we added since you last played!
Early Access Recap
Early Access went very well -- in fact, much better than we expected! Not only did we see concurrent player numbers that we haven't seen since the Open Alpha, the servers were very stable overall, with no significant downtime. Of course there have been various bugs and disconnect issues that we've been working with folks to track down, but overall I've been very pleased to see things running so smoothly.
A few stats for those of you who are curious:
- More than 1,700 players have participated since Early Access began last Friday.
- Our peak concurrent players topped 180 over the weekend, making us one of the top-five most-played multiplayer VR-only games according to Vrlfg
- More than 7,500 hours have been played since the beginning of Early Access (around 4.5 hours/player on average!)
- Our review score on Steam as of this writing stands at a respectable 81% (Very Positive).
- More than 1,200 new players purchased the game on Steam in the last 72 hours.
- 188 players have already put more than 10 hours into the game
Thank you to everyone who has decided to come and join us, and to our existing veterans for being such a welcoming and friendly community to all the new-comers. One of the things that I was happy to read over and over again was how much people loved getting to meet new people in game and how great our community is. I hope that we can always keep that up for years to come!
If you own the game and want to give us feedback, report a bug, or just need help, please feel free to stop by our Community Forums at any time. We're always around and happy to help!
One last note, if you purchased the game on Steam and have not yet left a review, please take a moment and do so, even if it's short. Your vote on the game is very important to help us stay visible on Steam and help the community grow. Thanks!
Over the coming weeks, we'll be working with the community to continue releasing patches on a regular basis to address major bugs and add quality of life improvements. For example, a few of the things we're working on now include:
- Additional locomotion options
- Fixing issues with the bow not working correctly if you hold your wrist straight on Rift
- Polishing the UI and adding sound effects
In addition to that ongoing work which will always been happening on a regular basis, let's talk about our long-term plans for the game over the next 3-6 months.
Content Patch One: End-Game Dungeons
Our first content patch will be complete on January 29th, and will feature:
- The Tradu Mines dungeon, which is our end-game Level 20 Dungeon, including 4 wings.
- The third World Boss, which will be a boss summoned by gathering materials in the Tradu Mines, and fought in the shared area at the beginning of the dungeon.
- In-Game lore books spread throughout the world which will help further flesh out the lore and give some interesting new tidbits on the characters you've met thus far, as well as setting us up for Act 3.
- Surnames for those who have reached Level 20 and complied with our Name Policy.
- The first round of Market Stall auctions
- The Tournament of Mages, which is an in-game, GM-led event which will pit the most talented Runemages against each other in a quest to see who's the best at casting spells.
We've discussed our End Game Dungeons previously, so I won't go into much detail on that here. The Tournament of Mages will be our first in-game, GM-led event, which is something we'd like to do on a regular basis. More details on this will be revealed as we complete work on it, but the general idea is that it's a competition to see which mages in the game are the best at casting spells quickly and precisely. We plan to hold the tournament at the end of January, and we'll have more details on how to qualify for it and the prize on offer as we get closer to time.
And before you ask, yes we are planning to hold tournaments like these for every class, we just have to start somewhere :-)
Note that although we are saying the content patch will be complete January 29th, some of these features will roll out ahead of that date as they are ready for you to use.
Content Patch Two: Shard Dungeons and Act 3
Our second content patch will follow and will include the Shard Dungeons, which are Level 20+ hard-mode versions of each of our existing dungeons. In addition, it will have the Act 3 story content, which will feature going into the Necropolar to handle some unfinished business from the Main Story quest, and setup the game's first Raid (which will come later). We'll also be looking to add additional avatar customization options. We anticipate this releasing patch around 12 weeks from now.
Content Patch Three: Raids and PvP
Beyond Content Patch Two, we'll begin work on some exciting new PvP content as well as the first Raid in Content Patch Three, with more details to come and a launch date on that as we progress further in development.
All of these Content Patches, including the end-game dungeon, shard dungeons, in-game events, and raid, are all part of the base game that you have already purchased, and will come at no additional cost to our existing players!
Throughout this process we'll continue to get your feedback and work on additional bug fixes and quality of life features, these are just the main highlights we'll be focusing on for each patch so you know what's coming soon.
Thanks and we're looking forward to continuing to see you in-game!
If you'd like to discuss this post on our forums, you can do so here: https://community.orbusvr.com/t/dev-blog-early-access-weekend-recap-and-next-steps/4150