[dropcap size=big]T[/dropcap]UG is starting to become the game that was pitched on Kickstarter over a year ago. The open world sandbox game, which is similar to Minecraft, was just updated with online multiplayer, and will be showing it off publicly at PAX South this month.
TUG, if you don’t remember, is the game that became the replacement for the failed Yogscast Kickstarter project. It’s also the game that saw its development team hit with layoffs after an investor held back its money last year. The developer found another investor, hired back the team, and has now added multiplayer to the “indev” version, which is an earlier-than-early-access build available for testing.
As TUG nears its second year of development, here’s some things you should keep an eye on.
Once the multiplayer is stable, developer Nerd Kingdom will be doubling the price to $20. For a limited time, the developer said, it will offer the game at a 50 percent discount to ease the change.
Nerd Kingdom gave their reasoning behind the increase: “This has very little to do with trying to capitalize to make more money on the project, as always its about us translating what we think the work we have done so far, is worth.”
This shouldn’t be a surprise, many developers up the price of their games as they become more complete during early access, like DayZ did last year. What we don’t know is if it will change anymore before the final release.
The release date
This one is tricky. TUG doesn’t have a specific release date other than “early 2015,” which it says on the website.
Right now, the game is still early, but it’s unclear if Nerd Kingdom plans to launch the game in beta, like Minecraft and many other sandbox games have done in the past. There’s still a list of things planned for the game that aren’t in it yet.
The Mac and Linux versions
Nerd Kingdom has said very little about the Mac and Linux versions of the game that it promised in the Kickstarter. Currently, it’s only available on Windows.
The last mention made it sound like it’s still eventually going to appear on both platforms, but, as the Kickstarter said, it will likely come after the game’s core systems are working.
This one is harder to define, but always worth considering when talking about crowdfunded projects.
Like many Kickstarter games, TUG is ambitious. It’s supposed to be a procedurally-generated open world full of things to find, places to explore, and beasts to kill and tame. And on top of that, the developer wants to cater the game over time to what players enjoy most.
There’s a real possibility that it won’t end up being quite everything Nerd Kingdom hopes it will be. We don’t know. That’s the nature of game development. For now, though, the project hasn’t ran into any huge hurdles and is already implementing one of the most important features it needs to realize the original concept.