As we near the end of summer 2019, it is time to address our estimated release windows, and how we will be dealing with them moving forward.
We have to admit that setting such ambitious estimated release dates during the Kickstarter - and the pushed back estimates afterward - were a mistake on our part, and we know that can be frustrating. In September of last year (2018) we were dreadfully understaffed, but working as hard as we could. Regardless, these were goals that we completely intended on hitting, but overestimated the amount of development we could get done in that timeframe and with our numbers. We tried to set our internal goals as closed alpha release dates, and they haven’t panned out as we would have hoped. Since mid 2019 our team has grown from 3 to 16 devs to bring you the best Dead Matter we can.
Recently we’ve reviewed the state of the closed alpha and decided that it is not up to the standards we want in order to go into testing to our backers. In an industry where first impressions can make or break an early access title, especially in the zombie survival genre, we have to deliver the best game we can for that first impression.
Keeping this in mind, we have decided that shifting the closed alpha launch to March 2020. We refuse to rush out Dead Matter to closed alpha or early access to hit a premature deadline when the game obviously needs more time in development.
In order to get the valuable feedback we need from partners and backers during the closed alpha, we need to be able to deliver an actual game. Feedback on what amounts to a glorified tech demo with little substance or gameplay loops would not be useful. Beyond testing, we want the alpha to be an enjoyable experience for our backers.
Of course, we still have our internal goals that we want to hit sooner than later. However, we have learned from our past mistakes, and the mistakes of other developers. We have chosen an estimated window that fits within our abilities.
Another issue we have heard loud and clear from the community is that our progress updates have been too infrequent. We will be improving on that by increasing the progress updates with smaller, more frequent blog posts to show what we are working on along with the vlogs. We have heard the community as well, and will be working to include more gameplay in the vlogs as well.
In addition to having more frequent progress updates, we have also totally revamped our website and forums to improve everyone’s experience.
We hope the community can understand our decision on this, and we appreciate all of your patience and support, thank you.