We’re seeing more and more games take advantage of Steam’s Early Access program, but so far only 25 percent of them have been finished and released as full games, according to a report by video game research provider EEDAR.
As EEDAR’s Head of Insights and Analytics Patrick Walker writes in a post for Games Industry International, Steam has seen a sharp increase in game releases, with 1303 new games in 2014 so far compared to 2013′s 583, and Early Access game releases have increased accordingly since the program was first introduced in March 2013.
There have been 255 Early Access releases in 2014 so far, compared to 103 in 2013. Of the first nine Early Access games introduced in 2013, only three have been released as full games. On average, games that have made the transition from Early Access to full release took about six months.
Walker also found that in most cases, players end up paying a little more for Early Access than they would if they waited for the full release, as most full releases are usually $1 cheaper than their Early Access versions.
The program, of course, is not without it’s success stories. DayZ, though still in Early Access, has raised an enormous amount of money, as did another survival sim, Rust, and players seem to be enjoying them. However, we’ve also seen developers release games in Early Access, then pull the game and disappear, as was the case with The Stomping Land.
What do you think about Early Access? Let us know in the comments below.