I've run out of ways to say I'm looking forward to Battlerite Royale, so it's good that we finally know its early access release date. The battle royale off-shoot to Battlerite, the MOBA without most MOBA bits, will land near the end of September as its own standalone game. I'm not wild about having to buy something I was originally told would be free, but at least I get a fifty percent discount and a ridable tiger.
You get those rewards if you own every champion in Battlerite, and all your cosmetic nonsense will appear in both games even if you don't. It comes out on September 26th.
I know all this because I'm reading the FAQ Stunlock Studios posted yesterday. It's partly a collation of info they've dropped in previous posts, but they also mention some new specifics:
"In Royale, matches are played in a free-for-all environment with currently up to 20 players on a map 30 times larger than a normal Arena map. Your goal is to loot items, abilities, and consumables, collect gold, and purchase upgrades to grow stronger over the course of a match and fight to be the last player standing. Another difference compared to Arena is that you don’t have to play as part of a team, and can play solo. If you want to play with a friend, you can jump into duo mode."
I'm pleased to hear there's shopping. It means I'll get to play with my favourite toys whenever I can afford them, rather than just hoping I stumble across them in a shed or on a corpse.
Vendors will sell consumable items like rocket boots and barrels you can hide in, as well as new abilities - everyone starts with just one simple attack. Even if I'm poor, I'll at least get to use "interactable map objects such as jump pads, portals, healing and resurrection shrines".
They plan to spend six months in early access, during which time they'll add "new content, primarily in the form of new champions from the Battlerite world, features, and cosmetics".
Battlerite Royale will be available from September 26th for $20 on Steam Early Access. That price is a sticking point for some because the game was originally planned to be a free new mode for the free-to-play Battlerite, before the developers decided that Champions required too many changes to make the mode work and spun it off to its own game. If you own every champion in Battlerite, a 50% off coupon should appear in your Steam inventory on Royale release day.