Proving once again that it’s somehow possible for indie studios to work on two games at once (!), Starbound developers Chucklefish have announced Wayward Tide. The top-down piratical action-adventure is being put together by a separate new four-person team. They’re still in the very early stages of development, but the grand vision is a 2-4 player competitive-coop booty-hunter full of treachery.
To emulate the chaos and backstabbery of a pirate crew, Wayward Tide will tempt with opportunities to betray your friends to get ahead or survive. If everyone dies they’re all set back, but a single survivor would scoop all the booty. The devs give the example of a pressure plate trap that all players must step off at the same time, lest a boulder crush those still standing on it. Random generation is used every time a new area is entered, so treachery will need to be spontaneous and loot-hunting spirited.
Modding has really helped Starbound be successful, Chucklefish say, so they want to mirror that by making their “development toolset available shortly after the game is released.” In the same theme, they’ll be regularly taking input from the community to determine what direction to take the game in next. There’s already some going on, as lead/only coder Jack Palfrey has taken to the comments to talk about how to design the game for solo play as well. Plus, nuggets of wisdom like this.
No word of a release date yet, other than “many many moons” away, but Chucklefish’s history would suggest Early Access will be used. The rest of the company is hard at work on Starbound 1.0, the first full release, which they detailed in a blog post last week.