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Hytale - Everything we know about the upcoming block-building sandbox RPG

Hytale
(Image credit: Hypixel)

Based on the insanely popular Hypixel Minecraft servers, Hytale is a sandbox RPG with many similarities to Mojang’s block-building titan, albeit with some meaningful focus on player creativity, mini-games, and single-player content. With the game’s release window fast approaching, we thought it’d be best to pin down all of the information we have so far about Hytale for those curious about the project. Here’s everything we know about Hytale.

What is Hytale?

(Image credit: Hypixel)

Hytale is a procedurally-generated sandbox game with many RPG elements, pegged as “a world of adventure and creativity” on the game’s official website

It looks and plays in a similar fashion to Minecraft, complete with mobs and biomes. Yet, Hytale offers a deeper focus on player-led creation, grafting in mod tools and scripting systems to help players customize the game and take it into their own hands upon launch, creating mini-games and making their experience fully custom and unique.

The game is being developed by Hypixel Studios, famous for creating the Hypixel Minecraft servers. If you’re unfamiliar, the Hypixel servers offer a series of popular mini-games like SkyWars and Crazy Walls and showcase adventure maps. They’re an incredibly popular force within the Minecraft community and broke many server milestones, earning the studio Guinness World Records for concurrent players in one instance as well as many other awards. 

It’s still extremely popular even today, and out of a desire for control over their runaway success, the studio decided to embark on its own venture, built from the ground up by a team of developers based all over the world. This was in response to EULA measures introduced into Minecraft in the middle of the decade which came down hard on server monetisation and harmed Hypixel’s booming economy.

Since starting working on the project which is built within the studio’s own engine, Hytale has received funding from Riot Games and a set of games industry veterans.

Hytale release date and platforms

(Image credit: Hypixel)

Hytale has been in development since 2015 but the game’s release date was only recently revealed in November of 2019. Despite following a “ready when it’s ready” policy, the team pinned the game’s launch window down to 2021. As of right now, the game is currently set to launch on Windows and macOS, with no news available about a potential console release just yet.  

Hytale gameplay - What can we expect?

(Image credit: Hypixel)

According to Hytale’s website, there will be a series of “handcrafted adventure scenarios” available at launch, including scenes like “a mage’s tower overrun with monsters,” underground cave exploration and gigantic boss battles. Hytale claims that “no two adventures will be the same,” suggesting that the procedural nature of the game will allow for much replayability. 

Hytale is fully playable in co-op and encourages players to forge their own story, settling into the world in a series of roles depending on your disposition. Warriors, crafters, and explorers are very welcome and will complement each other in a party. Hytale will also offer collectable gear which can be picked up by wiping out the unique creatures lording over the game’s many zones. You’ll also be able to create custom characters, grow crops, raise pets, tame mounts and build vehicles.

The game will have anti-cheat for its competitive mini-game component and Hytale is designed with “top performance on a wide range of PCs” in mind. Hypixel will offer their own official servers to play the game on, but encourage players to forge their own communities with the game’s shared-source server code.

You can catch the first glimpse of Hytale’s gameplay at the bottom of this blog post on the official website. The combat in Hytale is considerably more developed than Minecraft, somewhat evocative of Skyrim’s charged and quick attacks. Magic also appears to feature in the game, as well as functional quests. An Edge Magazine preview revealed that the designers want to revolutionise the PvP they had been working on with Minecraft. “We want to take the onus off the ‘spam clicking’ sort of behaviour, and give us a little more depth,” Content lead Sean McCafferty explains. The same article revealed a few other Hytale features such as treasure maps, bounty quests and the fact that there are a number of different weapon families, from warhammers to longswords.

Hytale creator tools

(Image credit: Hypixel)

Given that it was developed by creators, Hytale will boast a number of features designed to help creators use the game to develop supplementary content. This includes a range of cinematic tools for working on Hytale Machinima, with scope for custom animations and keyframe control. The game will also ship with in-game scripting mechanics, a browser-based 3D modelling software kit and all of the necessary tools Hypixel has been using to make the game so that players can experiment.

All the Hytale trailers so far

You can check out the announcement trailer for Hytale above, which sheds some light on the game’s universe and art style. The trailer showcases a host of critters including adorable puppies and cats as well as a glimpse into the different play styles you can engage with, from solo exploration to crafting and hunting across what looks to be a diverse set of biomes. 

The boss battles function like… well…proper boss battles, and the underwater exploration looks gorgeous, a far cry from Minecraft’s murky depths. The in-game tomb raiding appears to be more linear and focused than Minecraft’s super procedural offering too. One blink and you miss it moment shows off a Theater where players can come together and watch online videos with their friends dressed up as their Hytale avatars - a nice touch!