Good news for gamers that like to test out games in their early phases! Valve has launched a new section on Steam, the appropriately named “Early Access” section. This part of their site better organizes “games that evolve as you play them, as you give feedback, and as the developers update and add content.” In other words, this allows steam users to better differentiate games in their alpha phases and be part of the process to make better finished games.
“Early Access is a full purchase of a playable game. By purchasing, you gain immediate access to download and play the game in its current form,” the site admins explained on their info page in regards to how this all works. “Its up to the developer to determine when they are ready to ‘release’. Some developers have a concrete deadline in mind, while others will get a better sense as the development of the game progresses.”
Going one step further, “early access” games feature a hard-to-miss disclaimer and developer blurb on their individual Steam pages. Some of the games currently available are Arma 3, Gnomoria, Starforge, and Kenshi, along with eight other games in various genres including RPG’s, strategy, sims, action, and puzzle games. There are some pretty interesting games currently up for purchase in their formative stages, including “Prison Architect” which has my eye right now.
You can check out the “Early Access” games on the official Steam site and see what else pops up in the near future. In the meantime, you can currently pick up awesome games like Duke Nukem 3D, Hotline Miami, Cart Life, and plenty of others, as well as look forward to the upcoming official release of Don’t Starve and Fez, which come out in April and May respectively.