Interstellar 4X strategy game Endless Space 2 [official site] will launch onto Steam Early Access on Thursday next week, October 6th, developers Amplitude Studios announced today - narrowly missing its planned September launch. The initial release will only come with half of its factions, but that's early access for you - it's not finished, yeah? Fraser Brown dug a preview version he played, so it sounds like it'll have a good heart. Spacefingers crossed, anyway.
Here's a chunk of what Fraser thought of that preview version:
"I confess that I might be sold on the early game already. The influence of Endless Legend is clear and welcome, with its quests and fleshed-out, unique races, but it’s the new way of looking at the people who make up these space empires that’s left me most intrigued. The need to juggle all these different species and population groups within the faction is a wrinkle that, until now, hasn't really been explored in a 4X game – at least not to this extent. The big question, then, is how will Endless Space 2 handle the late game, where so many 4Xs fall apart."
Do also check out his interview with Amplitude - good stuff.
Amplitude have already taken Endless Legend and Dungeon of the Endless through early access, and Legend emerged as our favourite game of 2014, so I'd be confident it'll come out all finished and spaceship-shape. Especially now they have the backing of new owner Sega.
Amplitude said in the early access date announcement:
"We kind of know the drill now. :) The apprehension and pressure are still here nonetheless: we want to make a good first impression and want to deliver a version that should be as polished as what we’ve gotten you used to. Therefore, the game you will be able to play next week is the alpha version of Endless Space 2: it will be missing some features which aren't implemented yet, but will also include mechanics we want to improve with your help. Note that the core gameplay will be there, so you’ll get a good idea of what the game is about already."
Or hey, wait until it's all done and finished.