So, the upcoming Ashes of Creation test without NDA Alpha One was supposed to take place on June 1 and last for the entire month, but in an update, Intredpid Studios announced that the test will be postponed until July.
Just two tests that happen in very quick order for Ashes of Creation, the first of which starts this week. And while this test is not affected by this delay, the month-long non-NDA test scheduled for June has been pushed back a month. The team cites several reasons for this test, but the most notable ones are the timing of other MMO expansions and releases and their impact on the player base being tested.
Creative Director Stephen Sharif notes the update:
“Some recent events have forced me to review our upcoming test schedules and make some necessary adjustments. I will move the NDA release and the June 1 Alpha One start date to July. I know it’s not perfect, and you can’t imagine how much it pains me to disappoint our community, but it’s my responsibility to make these difficult decisions to make sure the test goes well.Testing on May 14 will continue on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and an updated schedule will be sent to testers today.”
The recent developments that Sharif is talking about are related to the release of several MMO expansions on June 1. . Thus, Sharif believes that because of these launches, 25% of their testers are likely to refuse to help with the Ashes, instead of going to these worlds.
“Finally, several new expansion launches for other live games have been announced, which would coincide with our test starting on June 1. We estimate that approximately 25% of our current testing pool are active players in these games combined. This fact leads us to force our testers to choose between participating in our test environment (which will be a long and difficult duty) or playing expansion games with their friends in other popular games. As I mentioned earlier, this testing period is important. This will require not only participation, but also attention and feedback from both our testing audience and the wider developer community and the general public.”
He also notes the impact this will have on media coverage of the Alpha version, when sites and content creators will have to choose whether to cover the Creation Ashes or other “live launches” on June 1.” And according to Sharif, the reason for this delay is not only these launches, but also the schedule for the team to return to work in the studio after working remotely due to the global situation with COVID. Sharif also mentions that updates to the combat backend and seige system caused their “internal code lock dates to shift slightly”, and so this affected the normal team time used for quality control and code optimization.As such, the team is also extending its refund policy from 30 days to 90 days for those who purchased the alpha package with the expectation of testing in June.