Stingbot Games has announced that their new action platform title, The Forbidden Arts, will soon be entering Steam Early Access. While in development for Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation 4, the title will undergo player scrutiny for about a year until it releases in early 2019, on the same day it leaves Early Access and gets its official launch on Steam.
Early Access allows a fascinating view into the world of game development. Player participation in the development process can offer both the players and the dev team a unique sense of agency in designing a game that all parties hope will be satisfying and fun. It is also a great way for games that might have struggled to find funding elsewhere to get an influx of cash that might help them make it across the finish line.
The Forbidden Arts, at this early stage, looks like a pretty cool platformer. The story follows a young man (orphaned of course, no video game characters have parents) named Phoenix. Our hero is on a quest to find a druid to help interpret some dire visions he has been experiencing, when his dormant pyromancy awakens within him (as pyromancy is known to do). Before long, Phoenix finds himself on a mission to defeat an evil necromancer that is plaguing the land. As he moves through levels and resolves quests, Phoenix will gain new abilities and spells to help defeat his enemies. From the looks of things, he plans on completing this mission by jumping around, stabbing people, and shooting fireballs into faces. Works for me.
It will be interesting to watch as this game works through the Early Access process. It’s exciting to see how new features are added in as a game gains polish, and changes are made as the result of player input. If you are interested in helping, keep an eye on Early Access on Feb 7th, when The Forbidden Arts is scheduled to arrive.