Take a gander at just about any marketplace on the gaming network and you'll no doubt discover a treasure trove of Early Access games, many of which have already accumulated more than enough global interest to prepare for a sky-high and undoubtedly sensational launch. Needless to say that with so many of them fleshing out the catalog, you're spoilt for choice, regardless of the platform you typically gravitate towards. But if you're looking to play the best games that are available right now, then look no further. Here are the best Early Access titles you can currently play.
It seems that in this day and age there's certainly no shortage of pirate-themed MMORPGs, as made clear by not only Sea of Thieves, but also the upcoming Skull & Bones. But in case you wanted a little more bang for your buck, then you'll be pleased to know that the creators behind Ark: Survival Evolved are also working on something of the sort, and its name is ATLAS. But what is this landlubber-loving vessel, and when can we expect to see it hit consoles?
In short, ATLAS is an online multiplayer RPG in which you assume the role of the captain of a fully customizable ship. Your goal, similar to other games set around the golden age of piracy, is to recruit a crew, build a ship, and conquer the Atlas network, which is, in essence, a chain of islands that each boast unimaginable treasures and challenges. With a fleet by your side and the breeze behind your back, you will take to the seas and become the world's leading anchor.
ATLAS is coming to Xbox and PC at some stage in 2023. You can get your hands on a preview today via Steam and the Microsoft Store.
4. Lakeburg Legacies
If you fancied the idea of playing both the town governor and the community matchmaker, then you're in luck, as Lakeburg Legacies combines the two and molds them into one cutesy city-building extravaganza for PC. So, what exactly is it? Or more importantly, what is it that sets the game apart from the countless other business simulation and city-building experiences on the market?
Lakeburg Legacies is an interesting one, as it marries two completely different components together to forge what can only be described as a social-based village management sim. Your goal in it, besides building on the foundations of a potential empire, is to match up the best villagers to create prosperous families that can help your community evolve. On top of this, you will need to manage your resources and social status, both of which will determine the overall happiness of your idyllic valley and its citizens.
Lakeburg Legacies is coming to PC in Q2 2023. You can get your hands on a preview of the game right now over on Steam.
SCUM has been lingering in our peripheral vision for the best part of four years now, and not once has it budged to make way for one of the other overly ambitious survival sims. But what sets it apart for its peers is its advanced crafting and metabolism systems, both of which come loaded with stacks upon stacks of eye-catching details and customizable features for you to experiment with. And while it may still be wedged between a rock and a hard place as far as development goes, it is still hands down one of the most visually impressive and anticipated games on our radar.
In SCUM, you take on the role of a washed up survivor in a vast open world that's both equally bursting with opportunity as well as like-minded criminals, all of whom would much rather exploit the masses that bind together to formulate a fun-loving community. With “unprecedented levels of character customization, control, and progression,” you will have the power to carve a future of your own, a world in which you play the lead in a bullet-soaked crime drama.
SCUM is coming to PC at some point in the near future. At present, it is available to download in Early Access over on Steam.
As far as hard-hitting multiplayer survival-horror games go, Phasmophobia essentially writes the book, as it has been doing ever since it first came to light back in 2020. And in spite of it still being in its Early Access state, it is still very much regarded as one of the most popular online four-player co-op games on the market. Knowing this, and how well it's already performing in its alpha phase, is a definite indication of its potential, for sure.
Phasmophobia pits you and a team of ghost-hunting investigators against a series of demon-infested playgrounds; worlds in which paranormal activity is commonplace and your goal of having to capture it is anything other than out of the ordinary. With plenty of campuses to explore and an ever-evolving roster of entities to wage war with, Phasmophobia secures its place on the list as an absolute essential for anyone with a heart for the other side.
Phasmophobia is currently available as an Early Access title on Steam. It is said to be coming to consoles in the months following on from its eventual launch.
If Norse mythology is right up your alley, then you'll definitely want to consider unloading a few dozen hours into Valheim, a procedurally generated open world survival chapter that lets you test your mettle against a brutal world based on Viking folklore and all its many, many gods.
Valheim hands you the keys to immerse in a barbaric purgatory, a Viking universe in which you play as just one of the countless survivors trying to make ends meet while battling against all odds. As such, you will have to fight to survive, conquer land to prosper, and adapt to harsh conditions in order to see the light of a new dawn break. How you go about doing all of these things, of course, is entirely up to you.
Valheim is currently available on PC via Steam.
So, what's your take? Will you be picking up any of the above five Early Access games this weekend? Let us know over on our socials here or down in the comments below.