After over eight years in development, logistics simulator Factorio will reach version 1.0 midway through next year. Developer Wube Software has announced that it will release the game out of early access on the 25th of September, 2020. In their latest developer diary, Wube reckoned with the game’s extended development cycle by deciding a change of ethos was in order. “We feel that the Factorio development is taking way too long,” said Wube’s Technology Director Michal, “The approach ‘it is done when it is done’ was serving us well to deliver a high quality product, but if we continued this way, we would be doing it basically forever.” Wube admits that the game is already polished and an immediate release wouldn’t feel like a failure, but says there are things in the game that the team would consider unfinished.
Factorio is an elaborate game of logistics, engineering, clever design, and shooting waves of alien bugs. It has sold over 1.8 million copies during its development and earned the nickname ‘Cracktorio’ among its rabid fanbase, who have used it to make some truly inspiring creations. It’s a pretty complex beast, but it begs to be played. Factorio has even snagged a spot on our top 100 games.
Michal says the decision to set a date for a 1.0 version is actually motivated by a desire to finish what is currently in the game so that new features and content can be introduced instead of simply “polishing parts that are already present” for even more time. An appropriate statement because Factorio has received a metric boatload of polishing in the past few years. Since Wube first considered a 1.0 release in 2018 entire iterations of certain systems have come and gone, the visual style overhauled for higher-res sprites, and elaborate new systems added. Nuclear power generation, anyone?
At this point, it’s hard to immediately imagine what they could possibly have in mind to add to this game, but if their past work is any indication it will not be something simple or boring.
Oh, and Wube has released new, updated, cover art—I’m into it. It describes the most important things about Factorio: conveyor belts, pipes, trains, and glowing power stations. Here’s that: