Boats have fallen out of vogue. Once upon a time, we had a boat in every bathtub and children would flock to boating ponds after school to sail their schooners. Now they simply throw their iPhones in the pond and look disappointed. Even Queen Elizabeth II, the glorious floating cyborgpalace formed by the fusion of our wizened monarch and the life support systems sustaining her remains for millennia to come, is only visited by pensioners.
Here's a clumsy comparison: it's a bit like EVE Online with water and boats. By which I mean it's a sail 'em up set during the 'age of sail', where you're free to sail and trade and fight across sandbox seas. It sounds relatively serious, with sailing driven by wind and physics, navigation where you have to actually navigate, ballistics with ricocheting shots, nuanced locational damage, and so on. Also, you can become a pirate.
Developers Game-Labs have been running their own early access scheme for a while, but now it's on Steam Early Access for people who insist upon such things. It's £29.99 now, and will cost more at release. Game-Labs have no clear idea of when it'll properly launch, though, saying "We plan to stay in Early Access until core features of the game are finished and polished." Their immediate plans include more ships, ship customisation and crafting, new modes, and more.
I suspect Tim Stone may have something to say about all this in The Flare Path later today, as he's played it before, but I wanted to steal his thunder.