Motion Twin's latest update to the Steam version of Dead Cells gives its players the option to roll back their game to any major iteration of Dead Cells, all the way back to its early access days.
It’s an interesting feature to build into an ever evolving game, and one that likely took no small amount of effort on Motion Twin’s part. While updates bring improvements and new content, the version of any live game that exists years after launch is often quite different from the one offered on day one.
The decision to add access to older versions, the dev team explains on Steam, was driven by their awareness of how much each patch could alter Dead Cells as a game, and a desire to preserve older versions for players and devs curious about the game's earlier days.
“We always wondered whether it would be possible to dig up the old versions of the game and store them somewhere, so that interested players and future generations of developers could look back at how our little game developed and grew into the Action Game of the Year 2018,” writes Motion Twin. “So, now you can load up every major iteration of the game from the first build of early access right up to present, and we will of course make sure that we stock all of our future major updates in there too.”
The actual option isn’t something baked into Dead Cells’ in-game menus. Rather, players are able to access Dead Cells’ properties from their Steam Library and find older versions of the game now stored under the 'Betas 'tab.
Other developers have undertaken a similar endeavor in the past as well, with games like The Long Dark similarly using Steam's 'Betas' tab to give players the ability to roll back and play earlier versions.
“This way, the nostalgic, the ragers and the ‘it was better before’ crowd will always have the option of playing the version of the game that they loved,” writes the Dead Cells team.