Early Access is the Devil

Wednesday, August 6, 2014 | 11

Seems like it wasn't that long ago that you could get in early and test whatever game you wanted, for free. Minecraft was the first solid example of selling alpha access to get a game across the finish line. The floodgates opened with Kickstarter, and the final nail in the coffin was the early access program on Steam. Now gamers constantly shell out bucket loads of cash for unfinished or, in some cases, completely unplayable games on a regular basis. Despite this, we all love it, and willingly participating in the madness.

Should we even play games this early?

I recently bought 7 Days to Die on Steam through their early access program. I enjoyed what little time I gave it, but hell, the game changes so drastically between updates, every guide for previous versions is completely out of date. While, awesome to watch the developers expand their game it can at times frustrate.

When high profile games release such shells of products to their testers, you wonder why anyone bothered to fork out so much to see it! There is a reason game development was not a collaborative process with gamers in the past, as most products were complete trash while in Alpha!

Don’t feed me that line of crap that you are there to help test and make the game better. All of you paid for early access to see and play the thing you are hyped for. More often than not, seeing a completely buggy unfinished mess does not help maintain your level of excitement about a title.


Founders Packs

Yep, this is still a gimmick to get you to pay up front to test a game. Leave it to mmorpg publishers to come up with a new method to trick you into forking out money way too early. Hell, I just paid $150 for Archeage which is a free to play game! My mind still cannot wrap around that expense, even if it feels totally worth it.


Optional? ...Not Quite

Try and resist playing a steam early access game while all of your gaming buddies are dumping in hours every night into Rust, Day Z, or Starbound! How am I supposed to resist that Everquest Landmark founder’s pack while seeing sweet builds on Reddit?! I must master all there is to Archeage and prepare in order to dominate at launch! Sure, Mr. Developer, your alpha access is optional yet we will get suckered into these traps over and over again.

This glorious scam works every time and I will continually be the sucker.


  1. I avoid this shit like the plague... Unless it's cool... Which it always is.

  2. Elite Dangerous looks good, but agian you have to pay & paying for beta just doesn't seem right.

  3. No game where you circle someone endlessly firing a gun will be good.

  4. I quite enjoy that the games I will play will have been tested by gamers who are so dedicated that they were willing to pay for doing it. And more money for the developer means more game too, so it's even better than that! If only I was similarly dedicated I would surely be a much happier person.

  5. I don't mind Early Access for multiplayer titles so much. It's always a good idea to get players involved in this early, at least for balancing, and I enjoy that MMO-like flood of constant updates for a traditionally not constantly updated multiplayer game.

    Single Player Early Access needs to die though. Yeah, I totally want to play the shitty version of your unfinished story/gameplay/whatever so that my progress is rendered useless or meaningless fairly regularly.

    I'll just wait until release.

  6. I absolutely agree with you. I'm quite tired of paying to play games that are not ready for consumption.

    That said, you should check out Unturned if you haven't already. This 16 year old kid is doing it right. He's giving his in-development game away for free. If you decide you like it, you can buy the gold upgrade for $5.


    IMHO, this game is as good as 7 Days to Die, and you don't have to fork over money to try it.

  7. Says the guy who says, "Says the guy who plays EvE."


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