What happens next?
In the aftermath of Kickstarter, I wanted to talk a bit about what to expect over the next month and beyond, in terms of both development and reward fulfillment.
We've gotten a few emails from people wondering when they will receive their game keys. This is going to take a little time. We can't begin to process and send out keys until we receive the final backer report from Kickstarter. After the project ends, Kickstarter / Amazon continue to try to collect payments from pledges that had failed payment transactions. This will go on for 4 more days. Then shortly after that, we should receive the final backer information and can begin processing the keys.
We expect we'll be able to send out keys in 7-10 days. We will send out an update to let you know once the keys have all been sent out. So, until you see that update, you don't have to worry about not receiving a key. If there are any people missing keys after that, we'll work with you to get it all straightened out, so don't panic.
Different rewards will be going at different times as roughly indicated by the reward delivery estimates for each tier. Note, that game-keys will all go out first and you'll have access to whatever version of the game you pledged for as soon as it becomes available for download. The Logitech mice we already have and will send out soon, hopefully by the end of June. Other physical rewards will take longer as we need to do some work in creating them. Some, like the Crate Story, will likely ship after the game is released as we can't write that part of the story until after it happens. The physical copies of the game will also ship sometime after release since we need to press them once we have a final build of the game. You'll have your game-key already though, so you can download a digital version on release day. We don't want to delay the digital release while physical copies are manufactured.
When will the alpha / beta be ready?!
Our current estimate is that alpha may be ready by the end of this year or early next year. We're working our hardest to make this happen as soon as possible but we need to produce a certain amount of continuous, playable content and complete certain technical tasks before this can happen.
We expect beta to follow 4-6 months after alpha and then estimate August 2013 for the full release. I'm sure no one wants us to rush and release the game before it is ready though. After all, this is part of the reason we've avoided a standard publishing deal. So, please be patient; it will all pay off when we reach the finish-line.
So what's happening now? When can we see some new stuff?
I've already had a couple people asking me to release another status update on the game but, you have to understand, we've been putting a lot of energy into the KS campaign over the past month and we don't even have the money yet from it. Some progress has been made on sounds, animation and programming but, we're still just two guys with a little part-time help, who have also been running a KS campaign. So, beyond a successful KS project, there isn't a lot of tangible work to show yet.
The purpose of the KS campaign was to help accelerate development but it is going to take some time for the effects of our funding to... take effect... I'm currently working out arrangements to bring more people on full-time. Because we've exceeded our goal, we'll be able to hire some additional people too, so I'll also need to post some job opens and start interviewing people. We're also starting to get the ball rolling on additional contract work and we're attending to all the KS related details of preparing to send out keys and responding to emails. On top of all that, Rhis and I are back to frantically working away on the game. I'm doing a bunch of work to connect and flesh out the regions just beyond the starting area, so I should have something to show on that front in a couple weeks. A lot is happening right now but it will take a few weeks before it starts to bear fruit.
I'll continue to release major updates on Kickstarter for a while to ensure that they go out to all backers and I'll also be posting them on the forums. Smaller development updates, when they occur, will be posted to our Development Updates forum. If you want to receive email alerts when new updates are posted on the forum, you can use the "Forum Tools" in the top bar of each forum to "Subscribe to This Forum". We also generally send out development updates via our Facebook page.
And now, back to work!