It seems that Cube World is still not dead.
For those of you that haven’t been following the drama around this: Cube World is a voxel exploration game that released a playable alpha back in 2013. The alpha was pretty damn good! The quality wasn’t the problem—the issue came with Cube World’s $20 price tag. Folks paid money to experience Cube World in an early state, so they also expected regular updates on the game’s progress. That’s how services such as Steam Early Access and Kickstarter function after all; any time people put money down on something that’s in development, they desire a certain degree of transparency. Makes sense, yeah?
This expectation didn’t mesh well with the development team, Picroma—which considers Cube World more of a perfectionist passion project which may not move as quickly as fans may want it to. Updates for Cube World over the last couple of years have been sporadic and sparse, something that has created many unhappy Cube World fans. Despite fan backlash and Kotaku probing, Picroma just kept telling fans to trust that the game was still being worked on and would eventually be released.
Over the last few days, Picroma’s Wolfram von Funck finally showed the world some meaty evidence that the game is still in development:
A bunch of music tracks and some screenshots! Practically a bonanza for Cube World updates. Maybe that sounds ridiculous, but you have to take into consideration that the last time we saw any tangible progress with the game was way back in June 2014, when Wolfram von Funck unveiled Cube World’s quest system.
What exactly are these new screenshots showing, though? Factions, it turns out. Each of the characters in those Tweets are leaders for their respective factions, and each faction has specific motivations and a unique storyline.
“There are good factions, such as the Order of the Light and the Druids of Mana, and bad factions, like the Cult of Doom, the Unholy Pact and the Steel Empire” Funck told me in an email. Apparently, there’s at least one other faction that Picroma has not shown off yet, too.
You’ll find factions while questing, and each one will have its own schtick. Funck said that the Druids of Mana, for example, really like giving out quests about “discovering ancient runes and protecting the planet from the Steel Empire.”
All of this is somewhat encouraging, but the fact still remains that there are a bevy of fans who feel like they’ve been left in the dark. We get weekly emails from confused and angry Cube World fans who want to know what’s going on, or demand to know when the game will actually be released. Some of this backlash gets back to Picroma itself, naturally.
“I get emails daily,” Funck told me. “Fortunately the shitstorm has kind of stopped, it was a very depressing time for me. It’s difficult dealing with haters and being creative at the same time.”
I had to ask the obvious question here: was there any sort of ETA on when fans could expect an update? Was there perhaps more progress on Cube World being made of late?
“Im just super excited to share our recent work with the fans,” Funck responded. “They’re awesome and I hope to give them their update soon. But it’s not done yet, we’re still working out some quest lines and adding content.”