Slime Rancher 2 gets an early access release date

Slime Rancher 2
(Image credit: Monomi Park)

Slime Rancher 2 is releasing on September 22, 2022, and just like its predecessor, it will initially release in early access on Steam, Epic Games Store, and Game Preview on the Xbox Series S/X.

"Slime Rancher has grown tremendously since we first launched it way back in 2016, now having over 15 million players!" explains game director Nick Popovich in the early access FAQ

"Slime Rancher 2 will launch into Early Access/Game Preview with a big world to explore, many different slimes to collect and combine, and an introduction to the game story and the mystery behind Rainbow Island," Popovich adds. "It's a substantial graphical leap over the original and all of the content currently available is in a highly-polished state. It should serve as a robust introduction to the new world we’re developing and a great jumping off point for the features we’ll be adding further into development."

That said, every early access game comes with caveats, and Popovich confirms that Slime Rancher 2 will initially be "incomplete". 

"It will not have all of the features, slimes, environments, items, story, etc. that will ultimately be found in the full game," he added. "We have taken great care to ensure that Slime Rancher 2 will always feel relatively whole and worth playing at any point in its development, but if you are someone who wants to play through a game all at once in a complete state, you can simply wait until the full game is released at a later date. We’ll be waiting for you!"

The base retail price for Slime Rancher 2 is $30 - there are no plans for that to increase once the game gets a full release -  and yes, your progress will carry over with each new early access update in a "seamless transition".

Don't forget, Slime Rancher 2 is coming to Xbox Game Pass, too, from day one. During E3, the Xbox Games Showcase Extended stream offered us the most extensive look at Slime Rancher 2 we'd had to date and confirmed that Slime Rancher 2 will launch for "Xbox consoles", PC, and Microsoft's cloud service. 

How do you begin development on a sequel to a game the world fell in love with? Well, Popovich says the team "started by meticulously recreating a lot of what everyone loved about the original". 

"It 'feels' just like Slime Rancher, only smoother, more expansive, more rich in details, and with a lot of tweaks and quality of life changes," Popovich told us earlier this year.

There are plenty of big titles on our upcoming Xbox Series X games list that you can get stuck into while you wait for Slime Rancher 2.

Vikki Blake
Weekend Reporter, GamesRadar+

Vikki Blake is GamesRadar+'s Weekend Reporter. Vikki works tirelessly to ensure that you have something to read on the days of the week beginning with 'S', and can also be found contributing to outlets including the BBC, Eurogamer, and Vikki also runs a weekly games column at NME, and can be frequently found talking about Destiny 2 and Silent Hill on Twitter.