After two years in early access, Lovecraftian colonybuilding/survival sim Clockwork Empires [official site] has released its first beta version. Changes like "New Event Arc system to chain interesting events together to produce Interesting Times" sound quite delightful until you realise this is a nice way to say "Now there's an arc to how frontier struggles murder your colonies and eldritch horrors megamurder them!" Beta status means Clockwork Empires is still not done but a finished version is a whole lot closer - think months, say developers Gaslamp Games, not years.
"We have now essentially finished all of the back-end code required to complete the game, so we can switch to integrating mechanics, UI/UX improvement, optimization, and stability," Gaslamp say in the patch notes. "And we can finally say that the completed game is a matter of mere months away!"
Along with event arcs, the main features of this month's shift to beta are a new workshop order queueing system, "subtle UI usability improvements," and a quality of life system which means "good colonies produce happy, productive overseers". Presumably bad colonies produce unhappy, destructive overseers.
The patch notes have the full rundown but hey, you can see a bit of all this stuff in a new trailer:
We haven't had a good look at Clockwork Empires since ooh 2014, so danged if I know what shape it's in now. Have have you been finding it over the years, gang?