The developer of Cube World has opened up about its lengthy development and lack of updates throughout.
This week, Picroma announced the voxel-based action-RPG Cube World would hit Steam in the next couple of months - six years after its controversial alpha release (more on that in Matt's report on Cube World's launch announcement).
Following that announcement, developer Wolfram von Funck issued a message to the Cube World community, saying an early distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack "traumatised me and kind of broke something inside me".
"I never told anyone about it, and I don't want to go into the details, but I'm dealing with anxiety and depression ever since," von Funck continued.
"Social media didn't improve it, as you might imagine. I'm still not sure if it's a good idea to tell the world about it, but I wanted to give the fans an explanation."
Only one update was released following the DDoS attack.
"There were several points in the past years where I considered releasing an update, but every time I was afraid it wasn't good enough," von Funck said.
"I'm also a bit pefectionist and it made me rework everything from scratch several times. The version I'm planning to release is basically Cube World 2.0. There are still many things I'd like to add in the future, but I think the version is already fun."
The brief message from von Funck helps to address what was one of the most high-profile MIA video games around.
As Matt said: "Although Cube World's alpha was an enjoyable experience in its own right, purchasers, who were expecting regular updates to the game, understandably grew wary when von Funck embarked on an extended period of radio silence not long after launch. Since then, although the developer has resurfaced intermittently to confirm that development is still progressing and to guarantee eventual release, communication has been sporadic at best, with whole years passing between social media posts."
von Funck's admission of mental health issues was met with positivity and support on Twitter today. Here's a snippet of the response:
It's easy to say "Man, you should've said this sooner - things would've been different!" but mental illness isn't something you can always apply cold logic to. I'm sorry for my past snark and hope the Steam release gives you confidence in your excellent game.— Defensior (@TheDefensior) September 7, 2019
Wow man.. I hope you are doing much better now. Thanks for everything and I know the release will be amazing. We love you, remember that.— Primo Victoria (@fr0zenn_) September 7, 2019
I appreciate you posting this, your words helped me with some solidarity around anxiety and helped describe that "broken, idk." feeling. So it isn't silly, thank you again.— Jay White ?? | Brotatoe (@JayBrotatoe) September 7, 2019
Just read it, no matter what you come out with, I and many others will love it. No matter what. I'm really sorry to hear you've been through what you've been through, and I wish you the best of days from here on. Just know we love you, no matter what others say. :)— DominoTheSorcerer (@DominoSorcerer) September 7, 2019
When Cube World comes to Steam, it'll be the first chance to see what's changed in the years since alpha release. According to the game's recently launched Steam listing, the new version will feature four classes - Warrior, Ranger, Mage, and Rogue - plus, combat, spells, magic artefacts, weapons, armour, potions, elixirs, and food, as well as tameable pets that will fight alongside heroes and can be used as mounts.
If you are worried about your own mental health, you could talk about it with somebody you trust, contact your GP, or search the web for local mental health services.
The Rethink advice and information service is available on 0300 5000 927 (10am-1pm)
You can call the Samaritans anonymously on 116 123.