Adventures in Alpha: Exploring Every Corner
April 13th, 2022
Singularity 6 has completed the next step in the development of Palia with our first Alpha! Our Alpha Testers surprised and impressed us every day with their discoveries, from floating pies to parkour homes. And much like our players’ building cozy homes room-by-room, we too are taking the time to build Palia, playtest-by-playtest.
This playtest was all about unleashing players to gain valuable insight into our new features, systems, and tech as we grow both the world of Palia and our team. In just a few short weeks, our players not only skyrocketed our game development forward with thoughtful feedback and crucial bug reports, they also captured the joy and magic of Palia in brand new ways.
Below are just a small batch of peeks at what our Alpha testers have been up to! It is helpful to remember these are screenshots of varying size from an early build of Palia. You may notice some incomplete artwork, fuzzy graphics, and some small bugs (not to be confused with insects!). We here at Singularity 6 consider these quirks part of the charm. 😊
Exploring The World
Our playtesters took lots of time (and photos!) to provide feedback on our game systems, like fishing, foraging, bug catching, and hunting.
“Maaaaaaaan I’m about to straight up cry. Just got into this game and the soft music, the ambient noise – Wow, it’s just SO relaxing. This IS the game I’ve been looking for. Amazing!”
“I have to say that gliding really is my favorite thing to do. Just yeet myself off the highest point and drift across the pretty landscape.”
Building Cozy Homes
Home is where Palia’s heart is, and we were stunned by what our playtesters accomplished in the limited time they had! They created homes that we didn’t even imagine could be done. It was hard to choose from all the amazing homes that were built, but we hope you enjoy these sneak peeks at what is already possible!
Vaylith, Mushykins, Brian, Evaleastaristev and TardisKnight showed Sixers what was possible with different combinations of furniture sets, from sunny bedrooms and cozy corners to dimly lit dive bars and loving clutter.
“I love building furniture and decorating my house. I can not wait to craft the next piece of furniture to open a new recipe. It gets me out traveling the world looking for items I need to build while exploring the gorgeous landscape. Building in game really makes you have a need to garden, adventure, hunt, gather, and travel. It’s a complete job. I love it!“
The kitchens of TanPando, Campsun, CheeryChickadee and CanoPaint showed developers how players want to imagine their aesthetic. Even with certain incomplete art assets – like the oven pictured here – we are still able to get a great idea of what players need from their positioning and “placeables”.
Speaking of kitchens, here’s AnnaBanana, chopping up some carrots in an early build of our cooking skill.
Players can retrieve crops from the garden in their yards to prepare those home-cooked meals. Pictured here are the gardens of evanfardreamer (left), Neuro (right) and TardisKnight (bottom). We discovered a lot of work is still left to be done with gardening, but we had to stop and appreciate the beautiful arrangements a few of our testers created with the gardening plots.
It would be impossible to share every home we fell in love with, from folks who created entire mazes to finding bugs that allowed players to stack furniture into the sky – but we do have to take a moment to show off Anitsirhc’s modern interior design skills! We may even take some inspiration from all these plant babies for our RL bathrooms.
It’s not about the playtest, but the Palian friends you make along the way. Okay, maybe it’s about the playtest a little bit. But it was a special treat to see playtesters already finding ways to enjoy the game as a group, even if it was simply finding exciting photo ops! Our devs will be thinking a lot more about how we can create these special moments for Palians of the future.
“I have to say I have never had such a kind player base in a game, ever. Everyone is always willing to help out or wait so others can come mine that silver or gold.
I love the fact that it truly feels like a home away from home. Then when my friends get on I’m curious to see what they have accomplished while I was gone. Then we can go fish together. It’s so amazing.“
Creating Hype & Chaos
Both testers and developers found comfort in one simple combination: Hype & Chaos. Testers were faced with the challenge of trying to break every part of our game, and they readily accepted.
Berry and friends made it their mission to place as many pies as possible before their systems started to break down – and found out the magic number was 1,023 pies!
Sixers never saw it coming – playtesters found simple pleasure in gathering in hordes just to attack the ground with their various tools, or jump erratically while trying to take the most chaotic pictures. Could there be a Hype & Chaos feature in the future? Palians will figure out how to cause it whether we develop for it or not! 😆
And, Of Course, Finding Bugs
With the help of hordes of playtesters over many hours, hundreds of new bugs were identified for Sixers to solve. (Or maybe, decide to keep…? 🥧 ) In an Alpha playtest, not everything can be beauty and wonder. Sometimes, it’s pies and ramen disappearing from your home plot and reappearing in your friend’s yards, floating in mid-air…
…Or sernuks gliding majestically through the treetops.
“I love how after 2 weeks in the game I really feel like this is my digital/virtual home, from decorating my homestead to talking with the NPCs and just taking a walk through town. (Other than the bugs, and not the insect kind.) I find myself wondering what I’m going to do after this alpha is over.“
– Xula the AFK
Our Game Director, Aidan Karabaich, capped off the end of our first Alpha with a personal note:
“This has been an amazing journey and has exceeded our expectations in every way. We love jumping in the game and interacting with the community, and seeing how the dev team is progressing in response to tester feedback. The Alpha is just one step closer to launch, and this is just the beginning. Thank you for being a part of this community and helping to make Palia the best game it can be.“