Retro-Future Shooter The Anacrusis to Blast Out of Early Access after 22 Months, 53+ Updates, and More Than a Million Players Served
November 7, 2023
After 23 months of intensive Early Access development, more than a million players, 53 updates (and counting), and the constant help of our community of players; The Anacrusis will reach version 1.0 and leave Early Access on Steam on December 5, 2023.
The Anacrusis tells the story of four survivors of a surprise alien attack set in a retro-futuristic sci-fi world. The unlikely survivors are stranded at the edge of space, where they must search for other humans, find a way to warn the rest of humanity about the alien threat, and maybe pick up some corn dogs—all while locked in a desperate fight for survival against endless alien hordes.
The Anacrusis is a multiplayer co-op shooter, with 1-to-4-player cooperative story and holdout modes as well as a 1-8 player competitive versus mode. With multiple intensity settings, The Anacrusis delivers the experience players want, whether they’re looking for a social hangout with friends or a difficult game that requires coordinated action and solid teamwork. The game is built for replayability—each time you play an episode, you learn more about the story and the characters.
Developed by the creative lead of Left 4 Dead series, The Anacrusis builds on what was learned making those games to create something new and modern that still feels familiar to returning players. The core of The Anacrusis is a new breed of AI Director. The AI Director monitors players’ status and ability, then uses its control over enemy, weapon, health, and ammo spawns to dynamically change the state of the game—pushing players right to the edge of their capabilities, before letting off and giving them time to recover. By creating the peaks and valleys necessary to build alternating feelings of dread, excitement, and relief in players, The Anacrusis’s AI Director makes every game exciting.
Stray Bombay launched The Anacrusis in Early Access because we knew we how difficult it is to make a game that’s simultaneously accessible to new players and challenging for experienced players. Since the Early Access launch in January of 2022, we’ve built the game with the community – 53 updates later, our new Steam reviews are Very Positive and the community is thriving.
In addition to the traditional co-op and holdout modes, we added asymmetrical Versus to The Anacrusis this summer. Versus lets players take on the role of the Special aliens, working together to prevent the human Survivors from reaching their goals. (Because of its asymmetrical nature, we like to think of it as a form of sanctioned griefing—teams basically take turns being mean to each other.) Unlike other titles, Versus is tuned to allow between 1-8 players to play, with our AI bots taking on unfilled roles. That means you can play a Versus game with any size group of friends, you don’t need to get 8 players together to have a compelling game. Additionally, our full bot support lets players practice as the aliens against AI Survivors.
One of our most requested community features was Steam Workshop support. We rolled that out last year, giving players access to community-built episodes, unique cosmetics, emotes, character skins, and more.
We’re proud of how far the game has come during our Early Access period. We embraced the spirit of Early Access—a virtuous circle of feedback from the community followed by updates to the game followed by more feedback—to create a successful game. The game wouldn’t be in the place it is now without the active community that’s formed around The Anacrusis. We owe a great deal of thanks to everyone who has given us feedback and helped us build the best co-op shooter.
“The Anacrusis is built on everything I learned from making the Left 4 Dead series," said Chet Faliszek, founder of Stray Bombay. “I wanted to modernize the core L4D concepts, so we started with a strong, replayable story mode and built from there. The Anacrusis is among the best of the genre and showcases our unique take on co-op shooters. I’ve enjoyed working directly with the players and modders for the last two years, but what we’re shipping with 1.0 is just the beginning for the game."
The Anacrusis is currently available in Early Access on Steam and Game Preview on Xbox, with more than a million players since launch in 2022. It supports full crossplay between all platforms. The 1.0 version will launch on December 5th, when you’ll be able to find out if Lance will finally get that corn dog.
For more information visit theanacrusis.com, check our Roadmap at bit.ly/anacrusisroadmap or discord.gg/straybombay. Find more images and a fact sheet on our presskit at http://presskit.straybombay.com.