No open beta for Brink, confirms Splash Damage

Thursday, 10 February 2011 11:52 GMT By Johnny Cullen

Splash Damage director Richard Ham has confirmed Brink will not get an open beta before its May release.

He explained that the studio wanted to keep any beta testing closed to polish the game rather than open it up for promotional purposes.

“They’re incredibly important, but they also need to be run correctly,” Ham, the game’s director, told NowGamer.

“Until you put a game into the hands of hundreds of players, all with their own ideas and approaches to gameplay, you can never truly know everything you need to know in order to get it ‘just right’.”

Ham continued: “At the same time, with some betas being used purely as marketing tools, some players treat a beta the way they would a demo, and they expect everything to be fully working and polished.”

Splash Damage held an open beta for its last title, Quake Wars: Enemy Territory. But Ham insists it needs to be kept internal this time.

“We certainly saw some of that during the public beta phase of our last game, Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars.

“For Brink, we consciously decided to keep the beta private and put it in the hands of folks with prior beta testing experience.”

It ends speculation as to whatever or not there would be one. Last year, Splash Damage CEO Paul Wedgwood told VG247 at a pre-E3 Bethesda event in France the studio was “still talking” about a taster.

“We’re still talking about what the right thing to do is there. In terms of project status, we’re pre-beta, so we’re doing a lot of balancing, working out what works, what doesn’t, cutting things, that kind of thing,” he said at the time.

“Probably when we get to around beta, we’ll make that decision, then Bethesda will make any announcements.”

More recently, Bethesda’s VP of PR Pete Hines told us that it would leave it up to the London developer if it would hold an open beta.

“It’s something we’ve looked at, something we’ve talked about, but we don’t view those things to be the same thing. We need to do testing for testing purposes,” he said to VG247 in a recent interview.

“If the team feels like they need to open it up to a wider group or to a larger open beta, that’s what they’ll do. If the team feels that the input and feedback they’re already getting from the testing we’re already doing is sufficient, that’ll be that.”

Nevermore. Brink releases on May 17 in the US and May 20 in the UK for PC, PS3 and 360.