Announced in April and revealed with a brief teaser trailer in September this year, Into the Echo is an upcoming “time travel odyssey” MMORPG. While details on the game are light on the ground right now, the story and concepts shared so far are intriguing – and now developer Etlok Studios is giving a small batch of players the chance to dive into a pre-alpha later this week.
The Toronto-based studio shares in a press release that it’s giving 250 players the chance to dive into the early build for its pre-alpha debut on the weekend of December 4-5. It’s a small group of playtesters that’ll be selected from those who sign up to try it out on the game’s site, though additional keys will release “in batches over the coming months”, the studio adds, so if you miss out this time there’s still a chance you might get to give it a whirl pretty soon.
The MMORPG is set in the mystical land of Raava, a place struck by a cosmic event a million years ago which imbued its people with a special power called Qen. “Revered by some and feared by others, Qen has been a part of life for the Raavai,” the devs explain on the game’s site. “Battles were fought and kingdoms were destroyed for the mastery over Qen until the formation of The Order of the Silver Birch. But the centuries-long peace seems to be once again threatened.
“There are no legends, no hope of mighty heroes that will rise to save Raava – only us mere mortals, and our only hope is to set aside our differences and work together to weather the oncoming storm.” It seems the idea is that players will need to band together as these Qen-wielding mortals to face the troubles coming Raava’s way, and to uncover its mysteries.
In the way of gameplay, Into the Echo feature a “unique progression system”, which is described as a “revolutionary new hub and spoke style progression system that allows players to build their own reputations within the world”, alongside “traditional mechanics like resource collection, crafting, puzzle-solving, and combat”. The latter will offer both PvE and PvP varieties. Players also need to team up to beat community challenges to move the world forward, and then there’s the time travel itself. This will come in the form of a “unique time-travel mechanic whereby players can travel back to various eras into the past to uncover secrets that can aid them”.
“Whether you choose to master a craft, become a legendary code-breaker, or actually fight, your contribution is vital to moving the world forward,” the studio further explains. Intriguing. The teaser, which you can check out above, only gives us the briefest of flavours of what the game looks like in action, with a lone character being transported by a glowing, double helix-shaped portal of some kind.
However, there are a few pieces of concept art on the game’s site at that link, which give us a good idea of its locations and inhabitant – and it looks like it could be a pretty gorgeous thing if these are anything to go by. There’s also a post about the studio’s vision for the game from executive producer Akshay Kolte at that link.
Our first pre-alpha test is coming up in December! Be sure to check out our website for all the details on how to apply!
💠https://t.co/ahxj36OfRO#screenshotsaturday #gamedev #mmo #mmorpg #conceptart pic.twitter.com/oeyd6X11sj
— IntoTheEcho (@IntoTheEchoMMO) November 20, 2021
If you’re keen to keep up with the Into the Echo’s development, you can join its Discord server or sign up for its newsletter on the game’s site. There’s no release date to jot down yet, but we have a list of upcoming PC games that are nearer on the horizon if you’re keen for something new to try.