Amazon’s Crucible Pulled Back Into Beta
Amazon’s first ever free-to-play team-based shooter game designed for PC just got pulled back into “closed beta” stage. And that Crucible, developed by Amazon’s Relentless Studio, always did run the risk of flopping out, makes it all just a tad easier to forgive. It did enter an exceptionally crowded market upon its release, after all.
Its hero-centred concept is dominated by Overwatch (Blizzard), and its third-person viewpoint is a model pretty much owned by Epic’s Fortnite. Not to mention even that it’s free-to-play (yup, Fortnite again). But the game, recently reviewed by a major games publication as something similar to the result of a bunch of “dismembered ideas” gleaned from the world of esports, does have one very significant thing going for it: it comes from money. Amazon country-buying type of money.
In Need Of An Overhaul
First released on Steam on May 20, the game is now officially back in fixing-what-didn’t-work land, which in Crucible’s case, sadly, is pretty much everything. So much so that at the height of its popularity, it registered a max count of 146 concurrent players. Not exactly the variety of flop salvageable by a couple of patches and a bit of clever marketing.
Deciding to pull the game back into closed redevelopment mode may be unconventional, but it’s certainly not unheard of. Think Final Fantasy XIV, which, having initially launched on practically game-suicidal reviews, was eventually pulled, rewritten, and relaunched to become one of the most successful games ever released.
Relentless Studios has in the meantime said it plans on sticking to the original “roadmap” plan, but that it will at the same time be actively welcoming feedback from beta players, or rather, regular-gone-beta players. A dedicated time will apparently be scheduled on a weekly basis for the purpose of allowing Relentless developers to play along with the gaming community while seeking live in-game feedback.
Try, Try, And Try Again
Pulling the game back into beta-mode was probably the best thing for it, after all. A re-release will ensure a fighting chance at eventually achieving success. And since Crucible is of the free-to-play variety, a complete overhaul seems the logical thing to do.
Amazon says it will be releasing another tent-pole game later on this year. Role-playing game New World should hit Steam in August and will hopefully not travel down the same troubled road as did Crucible. New World is however being developed by one of Amazon’s other development studios (yes, the richest man in the world has several studios in his Amazon Games-bag).