Legend of Grimrock 2 might be in alpha, but don't expect an Early Access version
It's a sad and strange state of affairs when a developer not releasing an Early Access version of their game feels like the exception rather than the norm - but here we are. Despite Legend of Grimrock 2 being in "strong alpha" - i.e. the game is playable from start to end in some form - Almost Human Games are not going to plonk this early version on Steam, and charge people to play it before it's done. You will be able to put down a pre-order at some point, however, giving the devs your money without getting anything immediate in return. Wait, what? (I imagine pre-orders will begin when the game is a little closer to being done, and there's almost no risk of development being halted by a sudden meteor or a desire for a shiny speedboat or anything like that.) Almost Human explained their reasoning to RPS, and because this opening paragraph is already lengthier than some novels, I've stashed it after the break.
“We are kind of old-fashioned," Almost Human (that's the development company, not the sadly cancelled FOX TV show) explained to RPS, "and want to release the game in a polished condition, so Steam Early Access is not planned. We are going to have preorders though.”
Call me old-fashioned - I am riding a Penny Farthing and inhaling snuff as I type this - but I'd rather wait for a game like Grimrock to be all glossy and finished before I embark upon the long and presumably arduous journey through its grid-based fantasy world. Forgoing Steam Early Access feels like the right decision to me.
If you're wondering how Grimrock 2 differs from its predecessor, think outdoor bits, improved monster AI, a more flexible skill system and more. The game's still on track for a 2014 release.