InXile are about to put your money where its mouth is and let backers of Wasteland 2 try the game in its beta form. It will be the first time backers have had a chance to see what their $3 million were spent on.
They’ve “distributed standalone copies of the Early Beta to a small group of external individuals as a test run. This is the final stage where we ensure it is up to our standards and runs on a variety of machines, and we’ll then be ready to get it to you.”
“You’re all no doubt anxious to get your hands on the Early Beta and we’re anxious to get it to you!” write Inxile in a recent update. “We’re now in the stage where we have distributed standalone copies of the Early Beta to a small group of external individuals as a test run. This is the final stage where we ensure it is up to our standards and runs on a variety of machines, and we’ll then be ready to get it to you.
“Early Beta will only be distributed through Steam, as called out in the original Kickstarter reward tiers. The final release will – of course – be available through a wide variety of channels; but running the Early Beta through Steam is the optimal option. Any other solution would require a non-trivial investment of resources into Early Beta distribution; we feel those resources are better spent on the general quality, stability and scope of the game.”
The post doesn’t just cover information on the beta, it also breaks down some of the dangers of the wastes. Firstly, there’s dehydration: “If you run out of water on the world map, you do not immediately die, but over time your rangers will begin to take damage from dehydration. You will eventually die if you do not find a new source of water.”
You can water in oases and within settlements so you will always need to be on the lookout for a place to top up your bottles. Not only that, “your water supply is based upon the number of rangers in your squad and the number of canteens among them. Depending on the type of terrain you are traversing, your water supply is consumed at varying rates.” So a large team will drink through your supplies more quickly.
Then there’s radiation poisoning. “Clouds of deadly radiation, remnants from the war, drift throughout the American Southwest. [...] Damaging levels of radiation poisoning begin at 500 mSv and can reach exposure levels that are instantaneously deadly. Except in these extremely high doses, radiation will not immediately kill but it definitely packs a bigger punch than dehydration.
“Equipping your squad members with rad suits will allow them to survive certain levels of radiation. You can also upgrade your rad suit later in the game to a higher quality version to survive higher doses; but remember that there are pockets of radiation in The Wasteland that are at such high levels that no one can survive, regardless of a rad suit.”
Finally, there’s good old fashioned murder. “Certain parts of The Wasteland are populated by particularly dangerous enemies. You are more likely to trigger high-level encounters while travelling in those areas. We do not conduct any form of level scaling in this regard; so if you wander off the beaten path you better be ready for a tough fight.”
There’s no final release date on either the beta of the game as of yet but we’ll let you know when they’re announced.