It’s been a busy day for Arma 3 developer Bohemia Interactive who have today announced the launch of their brand new early access platform called Incubator. In addition to launching Incubator, Bohemia have also released two brand new games onto the platform which are available to play right now.
Bohemia have acknowledged that their platform shares similarities with Steam’s Early Access platform; however, they state that one of the key differences between the two platforms is that Incubator has been developed to allow much more basic, experimental, and rough games onto the platform. At the moment only Bohemia will be publishing their own games and concepts to Incubator which will allow them to try out new ideas and prototypes by making them public, allowing them to gather invaluable feedback.
While from a gaming standpoint gamers may be worried that games will be a waste of money, one of the selling points of using Incubator is that most games will be available to play for free with only those games guaranteed to see a full release charging a price; even then it will be at a hugely discounted price compared to the launch price.
One of the games that Bohemia have released is a competitive multiplayer take on Arma 3 called Project Argo which pits two teams of 5 players against each other. The game has been in development for around a year now and is available to play for free right now.
The other game is Ylands, a multiplayer survival game that is based inside a voxel world. It’s similar to Minecraft in gameplay but allows players to create a completely modifiable island which you then choose a location for in the world. Ylands was released a year ago but was soft-launched by Bethesda. You can grab it now for £7.99, but there is a free trial on offer if you want to give it a try before coughing up the cash.
“While there are similarities between Bohemia Incubator and Steam Early Access, a key difference is that Incubator games can be much more basic, experimental, and rough. Moreover, Bohemia Interactive might even decide to cancel or stop supporting an Incubator game,” Bohemia have stated.
“To reflect this, people will often be able to play the games for free while they are part of Bohemia Incubator – or, if it’s already certain that the Incubator game will see an official release (such as Ylands), it might be sold as a paid product but always at a much lower price than it will be at release. In this case, the aim is to still make a free trial version available.”
“The primary goal is not to generate income, but rather to allow for a greater level of creative freedom, to try new things, and gather feedback on what works and what doesn’t. The Incubator games may never even reach the alpha or beta stage in development, but we consider it a great way to validate concepts and help us make decisions moving forward.”