Dual Universe Drops First Footage, Alpha Due Early 2017

Did you spot Steven chatting about the incredibly ambitious-sounding sandbox sci-fi MMORPG Dual Universe [official site] last month? In what sort-of sounds like an MMO slant on No Man’s Sky, developers Novaquark spoke of “cloud-based scalability”, “advances to voxel technologies” and a “seamless sci-fi universe made of millions of planets”, and citing Eve Online and Space Engineers as inspiration made it all sound a bit too good to be true.

One can hope, though, and while it still sounds a bit far-fetched, it’s now got some in-game footage that looks pretty neat. Look, see:

Taken from its pre-alpha build, all that whizzing around trees and valleys, the seamless swooping down from outer space onto planets’ surfaces, and the quick glance at developing civilisations at the trailer’s end there undoubtedly look pretty impressive, but I’m really taken by the in-game crafting and spaceship building system that features at the video’s beginning. It all appears to be done in real-time in the footage, but I’m intrigued to learn more about how it develops and how you develop it as you go.

Speaking on stage at the PC Gaming Show at E3 this week, Novaquark front man Jean-Christophe Baillie spoke of how players will get the chance to build ships, space stations, houses, and political and economic infrastructures in Dual Universe. “We don’t create the content – players do,” he said, before noting waging war and changing the balance of power was also well within the player’s purview.

Novaquark – who’re a team comprised of ex-Ubisoft, Apple and Sony folks – plan to launch a closed alpha in early 2017. “We are confident that our first look trailer will please the tens of thousands of fans that have been following us so far though our social channels, eager to hear and see more about Dual Universe,” added Baillie.

Don’t miss the rest of our E3 2016 news this week.

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20 Comments

  1. Zanchito says:

    Although it apparently intends to be a prettier Space Engineers, I’m unsure aobut it with the given information. The fun in SE isn’t exactly building pretty ships, but actual automated and complex systems with sensors, actuators, programming and parameters. It’s more than Minecraft in space, which this seems to be (I’m still interested in it, though).

  2. BobbyDylan says:

    Oh Look. Another space sim that’s going to be the ultimate game.

    Well, at least the fanboy wars will now be 3-way at least.

    • rustybroomhandle says:

      Three factions, just like old-fashioned RTSes.

    • kraken says:

      Star Citizen, Elite Dangerous, No Man’s Sky, Dual Universe.

      I count four.

      • Premium User Badge

        Harlander says:

        I hear Shores of Hazeron is gonna get a Steam release pretty soon, too…

        *flees*

      • brucethemoose says:

        Thats before you start counting smaller fry like Starmade, Space Engineers, Empyrion and the dozens of others I can’t remember.

  3. Barberetti says:

    Looks great, but I remember the Infinity Universe alpha footage blowing me away years ago.

    :(

    I’ll allow myself to get excited for this game when it’s finished and on the (virtual) shelves.

    • phelix says:

      That´s true, but Infinity Universe was never more than a tech demo. I´m already seeing workable gameplay mechanics and AI patterns here – though the game is somewhat less pretty than Infinity.
      I’m cautiously optimistic, but just like you I was awed with the first Infinity alpha footage (can you believe it’s been ten years since the first combat prototype?).

    • Jay Load says:

      I think I’m with you. Early access has all but killed my enthusiasm for anything that isn’t a fully fledged, feature complete product. I’ve lost count of the number of games I’ve bought into that have failed to live up to them, even years after they first dropped into Early Access. Not to mention the ones that just disappeared like my beloved Limit Theory (That one hurt).

  4. RedViv says:

    Does this game logo mess with anybody here’s mind as hard as it does with mine? It just will not parse at all.

    CUACUDCUNDUNICUALUNDUN

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    Cooper says:

    Why a Universe?
    Wouldn’t something like this be perfect for something the size of a single solar system? Unless planets are actually tiny.

    Kinda feels like ‘big for the sake of being big’. If they actually want the dynamics of people both cooperating and competing, they need to have people actually meet…

    • Greg Wild says:

      I agree. I’d like to see a more true-scale Solar system. Maybe something set in a couple of hundred years, once we’ve started colonising the solar system. Sort of like someone took the setting of the first three Expanse series books.

      • Rizlar says:

        Judging by the size of the planet(oid)s they have shown and how close together they are I doubt that they will be at all restrained by realistic scales.

    • Leidan Wing says:

      Infinity: Battlescape is going to be in a single solar system.

    • jonahcutter says:

      The planets appear tiny in this clip.

    • hungrycookpot says:

      Hang on. Are you complaining that the game world is TOO big?

  6. Iamblichos says:

    This looks a lot like Empyrion, a game that has been in Alpha for about a year now. The modular spaceships in particular.

    From a graphics perspective, everything is distinctly lacking in texture, though I realize this is a pre-alpha and they are probably just placeholders.

    • hungrycookpot says:

      Empyrion at first glance is really promising and has been pretty fun to muck around in. But it’s been months since I played, and there is very little appreciable progress made. I don’t have high hopes for that one anymore.

  7. Hunchback says:

    Please let this not be like Elite:Dangerous, please let this not be like Elite:Dangerous, please let this not be like Elite:Dangerous …