Early last month developer Chase Holton announced a new project called Bulwark of the Abyss, a massive action game that utilizes the projectile-deflecting combat of one of his previous games Gwarmbee (Free) and mashes it together with the “insane items and dungeons" of another of his previous games The Scrungeon Depths ($1.99). This all takes place in a big polygonal 3D world which is a departure from the typical low-fi pixel art look of Holton’s previous games. Bulwark of the Abyss looked awesome in that initial gameplay trailer, and at the end of last month a new teaser was released that had a… pretty different vibe, I’d say. That latest teaser featured some haunting music, some foreboding text, and an extremely brief glimpse at one of the horrific boss monsters in Bulwark of the Abyss. It also featured a bunch of cryptic clues, which some of the more enterprising fans were able to decode using an additional set of clues on Holton’s blog. The meaning of the cryptic messages? To announce that a Bulwark of the Abyss beta would be kicking off on February 14th, aka today, aka Valentine’s Day, aka also Chase Holton’s birthday. Here’s a slightly tweaked version of the teaser trailer announcing the beta, followed by that initial gameplay reveal trailer.
So you might be thinking “Oh cool, happy birthday Chase, and happy Valentine’s Day or whatever, now how the heck do I get in on this beta test?" The good news is that this is currently an open beta, and you can find links to the iOS Testflight version as well as Steam versions for PC and Mac over on the game’s official website. The bad news? The game in its current state is not well optimized, and so only those with iOS devices that have 3GB of RAM will be able to run the game. So basically an iPhone 7 Plus or later, any of the iPad models released in 2019, or the last few versions of iPad Pro should all be in the clear. More device support will come in time but for now if your iOS device can’t hack it you can definitely check out the Steam version. There’s also no real tutorial in the game, so that very same webpage that contains the beta links also offers up a ton of helpful information on how the various systems work in Bulwark of the Abyss. Finally, there is a new discussion thread in our forums for the beta testing, so if you decide to take this early version of Bulwark of the Abyss for a spin, be sure to stop by and let everyone know what you think.