After the recent launch failures of high profile games like Assassin's Creed Unity and Halo: Master Chief Collection few could blame gamers for being wary of major releases going forward. Obviously those two games weren't the first instances of gamers being burned, but they certainly established a more discerning perspective among this generation's gamers.
Now it's more important than ever that developers test their online-focused experiences to ensure they work as promised on day 1. Some developers may even be more inclined to run beta or alpha tests of their games to give players both a sense of the experience and to test real world load. Waiting until launch is no longer going to cut it.
That's exactly what Epic Games is doing with their new PC-only game Fortnite, which just recently sent out its first wave of alpha test invites. The alpha test is dubbed Online Test No. 1 and it will run from December 2nd to December 19th and will focus on verifying specific systems function at large scale player load.
Some may have already received Fortnite alpha invites today, but Epic says that more invites will be going out throughout the week. Not only that, but alpha participants will be able to invite two additional friends into the test, which is a smart move considering the multiplayer nature of the game.
Epic also released a short trailer for Fortnite that focuses on the game's magic moments, as relayed by some members of the development team. As some may know, Fortnite's core gameplay pillars include building forts in the daytime and defending them at night. Obviously, there's more to it than that, but we suspect that will be a major focus for this alpha test.
After a surprise announcement at the Spike Video Game Awards two years ago, Fortnite has been in and out of the limelight for quite a while. At one point some even thought the game might be cancelled, but Epic was quick to smash those rumors with new gameplay details and trailers.
Now, gamers will finally be able to go hands-on with Fortnite to see what exactly Epic Games is working on for 2015. It may seem like Minecraft, but we suspect the folks behind Gears of War and Unreal Tournament will be able to deliver more than a basic clone.
Did you get into the Fortnite alpha? What do you hope to see from the game?
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