Early Access has been a fantastic way for developers to put their titles out in the wild while they continue development. The platform has been active for roughly four years now, with games remaining Early Access for as little as a couple of months, or as much as several years. Plenty of big titles started off as Early Access games, working out the kinks before their full release. The following games used to be in Early Access but have since gone on to be great successes, so much so that you probably forgot the humble roots they came from.
This beautifully stylized survival game made its way to consoles and garnered some real buzz, but before that, it spent almost a year in early access. This gave the developers time to iron out the game’s systems and ensure that it wasn’t completely impossible for players to survive the cold nights. After Don’t Starve exited early access, it got several expansions, adding to the locales players can brave and the monsters they can choose to flee from or fight.
Because the survival genre in the form we know it now was still being molded, early access let the developers continue work on the game while players gave feedback on new additions and mechanics. Minecraft was creating waves with its own style of survival, so Don’t Starve took its time and make sure it made its own mark on the industry.