Early Access Is Like Reaching Adulthood – You’re Excited To Get There But Boy Is It Crap
How long will we continue to accept the absolute garbage being thrown our way under the promise of one day having the opportunity to sit back, admire, and say "I helped build that"? The reality of it is very different. It's more than likely two years down the line that you'll be ridiculed by your peers as yet another Early Access promise goes down the shitter and your $30 and hundreds of hours of investment with it.
The world of digital video-game sales is a magnificent one. We can grab almost any title we like and play it almost instantly. Excellent distribution platforms litter every corner of the internet, catering to every type of gaming desire. Yet there's one particular area of digital sales that doesn't seem to conform to the standards laid out by the others, Early Access. Let me take a minute to explain what Early Access is. I'll explain it as they want you to believe it, before giving my personal take on the subject.
What Is Early Access?
Early Access is the amazing opportunity for you to get involved with the game and development team at a foundation level. Work closely with the developers and provide detailed feedback and suggestions that will shape the game for years to come.
What Is Early Access Really?
Well, right. We had this great idea for a game but kinda got bored halfway through and put in a ton of crap that wasn't really ready or fitting. It's all good though. We sold it through Steam and managed to con at least a few hundred thousand people into the belief that an almost non-existent dev team can actually make this hardly playable piece of crap into anything more than garbage. Sorry can't chat, off to meet George Clooney for dinner.
The real problem with Early Access? There is no fear of repercussion. Even a small child learns that certain actions can have a negative consequence, yet the anonymity of the internet allows these developers to hide behind walls of 0's and 1's, greedily rubbing their hands together so fast they set alight to their genitalia in the process. Why are these developers allowed to release games that are not even 20% complete? Why are they allowed to throw complete crap all over the Steam store page for features that have only just past the "I had a dream" phase?
Oh, sorry. Nevermind, it's okay. They added a few words warning that it's in Early Alpha and to expect problems and a lack of content. Well here's warning for you. I'm fine with a lack of content, I'm fine with bugs and errors; hell I'll even help to fix them if I can. However, I am not fine with you taking $30 and then practically leaving your game to rot.