Shroud of the Avatar's first playable version released
The game launched a Kickstarter program after the project was unveiled by developer Portalarium back in early March, and as part of the incentive for crowd funding the game, early supporters were promised access to the first playable Shroud of the Avatar version.
Much of the buzz surrounding Shroud of the Avatar comes from being a title made by famed game designer Richard Garriott of Ultima fame, one of the earliest mmorpg games that paved the way for the genre's current form and popularity.
Garriott said this first playable version -- nicknamed Release 1 -- is quite the rough gem in need of heavy fine-tuning and lots of further content development. He encouraged early testers to provide insightful feedback to do just that.
"It’s still very early in development, and this is not your traditional development model. Since the game is crowd funded and crowd sourced, we feel it’s important to give our community an early glimpse of the game’s progress...earlier than what you’d normally see in traditional game development," said Garriott.
"But this is important because player feedback at this stage will be utilized in helping us understand any changes we need to make and to possibly reaffirm that we are on the right track.”
Still, Release 1 offers a lot of things to do. Players will be able to converse with non-player characters and try out the game’s dialog system; try on different avatar clothing, armor and weapons; view the available player houses, including the vast Lord of the Manor estate; and decorate their houses with furniture.
One limitation though is that this early release will be single player only. The developer assured though that later releases will allow for multiplayer online modes.