Beta Release Date

We hope to make the beta build available 7th of March. However, please understand that we reserve the right to push this date back in case we encounter a serious issue.

The Beta is available to Kickstarter backers, and late-backers who have backed via our website. Anyone can join in on the beta by going to our preorder page!

Beta Distribution

The beta release will be distributed through Steam.

However, this does not mean we are putting the game up for sale on Steam just yet! We are simply using Steam as a key distribution service for now.
The game will not be available for sale on Steam (nor Steam Early Access).

You will receive a Steam key through your Kickstarter or Humble Bundle email, so make sure that your email is accurate! If you already have Alpha access, you won’t receive a new key; your existing game will be updated to the beta build on the 7th.

 

Beta Content

The beta release will be available for Windows and Mac. The Hat in Time Editor and co-op will NOT be available in this build.

The beta will feature the following content:

  • Mafia Town 1-1: Welcome to Mafia Town
  • Mafia Town 1-2: Barrel Battle
  • Mafia Town 1-3: Good Night, Mafia Town
  • Mafia Town 1-4: Down with the Mafia!
  • Mafia Town 1-5: The Impossible Race?
  • Mafia Town 1-7: The Golden Vault
  • Subcon Forest 2-2: The Subcon Caves
  • Subcon Forest 2-4: Queen Vanessa’s Manor
  • Trainwreck of Science 3-1: Train Rush
  • Various Secret Levels

We have decided to include a vertical slice of the game, as we don’t want to spoil the complete Hat in Time experience until release.
We made a lot of significant changes (even to core gameplay) based on Alpha feedback; we’ll be doing the same for Beta. As a result, some things may change later on, and the final game may look different from the beta build.

The game will say that there is a total of 60 Time Pieces. This is not a final number, and will change in the final release; we reserve the right to both increase or decrease this number as we deem appropriate.

 

Current Game Status

During the Kickstarter we said the beta would launch when the game is content-complete.

However, we have decided to release the beta build prior, as we wanted to give beta players the opportunity to help shape the game, and that wouldn’t be possible if everything was content-complete.

There is still some way to go on the game’s development, but we found the alpha feedback invaluable, and we think it would be a missed opportunity if we didn’t allow that feedback to shape the game again for beta!

Community Feedback Tracker

For the Alpha Build we made a Community Feedback Tracker available for people to share their thoughts and feedback. We will continue to use this tracker for beta, but we will be resetting it upon beta release.

We chose a tracker instead of a forum, as we believe a forum comes with a lot of culture we are not ready to handle at this point. The tracker allows community users to submit: ideas, problems, questions and thanks. Users will be able to vote on existing topics and we at Gears for Breakfast will do our best to answer as many of them as possible.

Please note that tracker access is not a purchasable item, but an opportunity we provide to players to communicate directly with the development team. It may be revoked at any time for any reason.

 

Slacker Backer Access

We will continue to make the Alpha Build available on our preorder site (link) until February 28th. On the 28th the Alpha Build will no longer be purchasable, but will be replaced by the Beta build.
This is to prevent anyone from purchasing the Alpha Build with less than 1 week to play it for, but still allow enthusiasts to purchase the Alpha Build before that date if they desire.

On the 7th of March, the ‘Upgrade to Alpha’ option will be replaced with an ‘Upgrade to Beta’ option.

Optimization

One of the last steps in our development cycle is making absolutely sure the game runs at an optimal level. At our current cycle, we are focusing on gameplay. For that reason, the Beta release may run slower on some machines.
We have applied some significant optimizations since the Alpha release, however, we have also significantly improved the graphical quality of the game. With everything turned to max settings, the game will run worse than the alpha build (obviously, since there is much more to render), however, at reasonable graphical settings the game should run overall better than the Alpha build.

We make no guarantee that the game will be able to run well on your system, but we have provided as many graphical options as possible to help you turn off optional graphical features, so that it may run reasonable.

Speedruns

A big part of speedrunning is exploiting bugs in games (for instance, inventory glitch in The Wind Waker). Just like the Alpha Build, we will fix any bugs we see during beta.
In return, we make the following promise: We will not fix an exploit after release, if it has speedrunning value and it is unlikely to be reducing the experience of a regular player.

If you find some wicked way of getting into the sky or under the ground and it requires a crazy combination of button presses, then we have no reason to remove that alternative experience from the game.
But if there is a chance it might happen on accident to a regular player, then we will have no choice but to patch it. I hope this is understandable.

Polish

Please keep in mind that for the beta release, some assets or areas of levels might be unpolished.

Review

The beta build is not ready for review, it is not a representation of the final game and any content may be due to change. Please wait with reviewing the game (especially giving it any sort of score) for the final release. You are free to do impressions or preview discussions, but the word “review” may mislead consumers into thinking that this is a complete game. Please also avoid the term “Early Access“, as it could be confused for the service Steam Early Access, a service that the game is NOT on.

Recording and Monetization

We definitely encourage players to create videos using the beta build, be it gameplay footage, guides and so forth. It is perfectly fine to upload or stream these videos to sites like YouTube, Twitch, Hitbox or similar services.
We only request that you make sure to emphasize that this is in its beta stage, and provide a link to our purchase page (currently http://hatintime.com/preorder).

You can feel free to monetize these videos, as long as they are publicly available and non-commercial. You can not, in any sense or form, charge for access to these videos.
We do not allow taking assets from the game and we do not allow for you to distribute those separately. Please don’t do that.

FAQ

“How can i switch the display resolution in the beta build?” Resolution switching when the game is in fullscreen mode is currently broken. To get the game running at your optimal resolution please set the game to windowed mode, choose your desired resolution and then switch back to fullscreen mode.

 

We look forward to sharing our work with you in March!