What has changed and what’s to come? The Early Access journey of Monster Crown

With its Early Access release 4 months ago, monster taming game Monster Crown has already changed a lot and there’s much more to come…
 

By Linda Bendsneijder

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Release Date

Steam Early Access: 31 July 2020

Full Release: T.B.A.

Age Rating

Rating Pending

Developer

Studio Aurum

publisher

SOEDESCO

Rotterdam, The Netherlands - December 10, 2020

Monster taming game Monster Crown released on Steam® Early Access over four months ago. On July 31, competitive battles from all over the world were able to unite and delve into the dark story of Crown Island. More about the origins and inspirations of the game’s story, can be found here

Since its release, the nostalgia-packed game has already received numerous patches and four big content updates, making for a total of one patch per week and one big content update per month. And that’s not all… Developer Studio Aurum will continue to update the game with more content and features to come. But what all has changed since Monster Crown was first set loose on Steam and what’s in store for the near future? We’re breaking down the patches and big content updates since then and we’re giving you a sneak peek of what’s to come in the near future. 

     "There is no risk of this project becoming abandoned or no longer a priority. Monster Crown is the only game I have any interest in working on”

A successful start

From the moment Monster Crown released, fans from all over the world showed their support by getting their hands on the Steam Early Access version and sharing their thoughts. It was an insane first weekend with lots of monster breeding, online battling and community support. Within the first 72 hours of Early Access on Steam, Monster Crown had already surpassed its Kickstarter success. The nostalgia-packed game sold more copies in less than 72 hours on Steam than during its entire Kickstarter campaign. 

Moreover, the amount of enthusiasm and feedback that we received was overwhelming. It was great to see the amount of faith and support from many by joining us so early in the Early Access stage. And from the very beginning, developer and founder of Studio Aurum, Jason Walsh, has been determined to make his childhood dream turn reality. He stated that ‘there is no risk of this project becoming abandoned or no longer a priority. Monster Crown is the only game I have any interest in working on’. All the given support only strengthened Jason to further improve the game. He immediately started working on the first patches to fix several bugs and make Monster Crown run smoother. Within the first 72 hours on Steam, he released four patches that focused on fixes which were brought up through community feedback. Things such as the overall increase in battle speed, double amount of starting cash and adding skull icons to dangerously strong foes were immediately added to the game. Feedback coming from the Monster Crown’s Steam page, forums and Discord had enabled Studio Aurum to assess the highest priority fixes and improvements that provided the most benefit to everyone playing Monster Crown. 

The following days, Monster Crown continued to be updated with various improvements. After just one week in Early Access, Studio Aurum had fixed many bugs and improved the overall gameplay flow. There were many additions brought to the game, such as a major rework of programming behind the monster box system, which increased from just 10 to 50 boxes. This means you can currently store 800 monsters! 

     "Content Update #1 introduced two brand new features to the game: online monster trading and the so-called ‘Move Learner/Re-learner’”

Online monster trading and the ‘Move Learner/Re-learner’ 

Within a month of Early Access on Steam, Monster Crown received its first big content update. Content Update #1 introduced two brand new features to the game: online monster trading and the so-called ‘Move Learner/Re-learner’. With online monster trading added to the game, players from all over the world were finally able to exchange all their monster creations with other tamers. They could share monsters with friends and become expert traders in order to get the most powerful monster collection. 

The second feature that was introduced to the game, the ‘Move Learner’, allowed for a more strategic way of using your monsters. The ‘Move Learner/Re-learner’ is an NPC who lives in the snowy, sleepy town of Frobec. Monsters have a large learn set that they learn through levelling up, but they can only remember six at the time. With the game’s breeding system, learn sets are merged, which means your cross-breeds can have a ridiculous roster of moves. Because of this, the ability to swap which moves your monster currently remembers has been a highly requested feature. It lets you get the most out of your crossbreeding experimentations. The ‘Move Learner/Re-learner’ can help your monsters to remember and forget moves. He will hypnotize the monster into a very sleepy state, allowing you to select which of the moves from it large roster of attacks are known at any given time.

After these new features were added to Monster Crown, a patch was also released shortly after. The patch quickly smoothed out a few minor issues and improved the NPC trading menu flow. The following weeks, more patches were released that focused on any issues with the ‘Move Learner/Re-learner’. Feedback provided by the community on Discord proved useful to help tweak the new feature. With Content Update #1, Studio Aurum had also added a mystery feature that would give players a taste of what’s to come in the next big content update. The Alternate Gene provided a sneak peek at gene editing and the powers that come with it. With some experimentation you could now accomplish new things with breeding that you couldn’t do before. Content Update #2 soon offered more possibilities when creating new crossbreeds. 

              "However, there is a catch… Getting that monster instantly is great, but if it gets hurt, it dies! Forever!”

Hi Temperature Breeding, Gene Lab and Apo

With Content Update #2 out in the wild, three new features were added to the game. First off, Studio Aurum turned up the heat in the breeding lab. With hi temperature breeding, embryos grow so rapidly and energetically that they leave the egg immediately, allowing you to check if they’re brilliant, what their base stats are etc. This mode is especially useful for the real competitive breeders that do a lot of experimenting and want to see the results of their efforts immediately. 

However, there is a catch to this… Getting that monster instantly is great, but if it gets hurt, it dies! Forever! In order to prevent this, you will have to level up your level 0 hatchling without letting the monster get hurt in order for it to grow to its true form. 

The other feature includes the previously discussed gene editing. An advanced Gene Lab over in Hewston, the far-right island on the map, lets you build your own custom chromosomes for breeding. Even though this part of the island has not been revealed to the public yet, the eastern-most Hooper sister can sneak you in! Once inside the gene lab you will find a series of machines that have special symbols on them. Depending on which switch is flipped, the monsters you breed will inherit different attributes from their parents. The true meaning of each symbol is a mystery, so it’s up to you to figure them out and experiment, or work with other players to uncover the exact formula for your perfect crossbreeds. And there’s more to it… once you save a custom chromosome, they can be set in the breeding menu before doing any hatching. These chromosomes will work for normal breeding and even hi temperature breeding, so there’s a whole new world of possibilities. 

And there’s also Apo. These are small weak animals that reside in the Windy Province. They can be attacked by an evil fungus that kills the host and reanimates it as the unstable zombie monster Laz. Due to its weakness and not being fit for battle, Laz is a harmless monster that you can’t add to your team. However… rumour has it there is a location called the ‘Apo Plateau’ where a unique item, ‘Apo’s light’ can be obtained. When using this item on Laz, you can remove the fungus and restore it to its original state. It’s a lot of work to turn Laz back into the quite weak Apo, but you’ll get a cute monster in return and with Monster Crown’s latest Content Pack, you’ll see Apo proves to be worth the effort. 

"The story continues and you now get to meet King Dania after you’ve previously rescued your dad and received a letter from Tenna to go to the castle of Empathy Kingdom"

Monster riding, map expansion and new story content!

Before we go over the latest content update, which is Content Update #4, there has been another one that proved to be the biggest so far. Content Update #3 added monster riding, three cities, two provinces, a mysterious cave and new story content. Monster riding is a fun feature that allows you to ride some of your favourite monsters, plus it does boost up your top travel speed 12.5%! The current list of rideable monster include: 

  • Primigon
  • Raptor
  • Brutus
  • Myrkrsormr
  • Stega
  • Echelk
  • Tanukrook
  • Stamlanche
  • Gualop
  • Drangus
  • Traumata
  • Trove
  • Gigadrile

The second third of Crown Island begins by taking the Desperado-East bridge that was previously occupied by a Hooper Sister who prevents you from going to an area that hasn’t been released yet. The bridge will lead you to the Frost province and Flowering province. There you can find the cities Frobec City, Appenton City and Empathy Kingom. The story continues and you now get to meet King Dania after you’ve previously rescued your dad and received a letter from Tenna to go to the castle of Empathy Kingdom. Within these two new provinces, you’ll also find a mysterious cave by exploring the area. What lies within the cave is up to you to find out. 

Team Super Gro vs. Team Atomic Clock

Freeing Laz from the evil fungus will leave you with the sweet, yet weak monster Apo. However, this is all about to change… With Content Update #4, you get two super transformation teams that can each turn three monsters –and their crossbreeds into powerful beasts. The Super Go item will enable you to unlock the Super Gro transformations of Apo, Laz or Jungro. In order to find the item that will help you transform your monsters, you’ll have to head over to Empathy Kingdom and swing by the flower bed just outside of the Duchess’ Tower. There, you’ll find yourself one free Super Gro. If you use the item in-battle, you'll be able to activate a mid-battle transformation and keep your Super Gro item for re-use, but if you use it on a monster outside of battle the Super Gro will be lost, in exchange for making the transformation permanent. If you want more, you better get searching! The deepest wilderness tamer packs have a low chance of containing one.

There is also another transformation item that enables you to transform three monsters and their crossbreeds. The magical Atomic Clock causes a dramatic transformation in Dracoyle, Darwhol and Gorgem! Where can you get your hands on your very own Atomic Clock? Well, in a cave just north of Empathy Kingdom. You'll also be able to explore a fun, Atomic Clock-oriented surprise quest somewhere in Empathy Kingdom. It features a monster many of you have had your eye on for quite some time! After the quest, the Atomic Clock will also begin appearing in the wild in deep-wilderness Tamer Packs like with the Super Gro.

Together with the two transformation teams, synergy attack upgrades were also added to Monster Crown. There is a new attack, the Dragon Blast that will upgrade to Dragon Blast 2 in the presence of synergy. Additionally, the move Swipe can now upgrade if you have built up synergy into the move Full Slash. Furthermore, if you breed two monsters that know the move Dragon Blast, its offspring will be born knowing Dragon Blast 2, so this provides a new layer to battle and breeding alike. 

Oh, and the monsters Myedin and Madis are now avbailable in the wild. And the new move Swallow Power lets you absorb attack power to gain synergy. Will you be able to find them all?

                    "And just in time for the holidays, on December 18th, Monster Crown will receive a holiday patch"

What’s next? Monster respect system, side quests and a Holiday patch

As of tomorrow, a new patch is going to be added to Monster Crown, including a new monster respect system and side quests. When starting a new game your monster respect level is 0, and by defeating a chief in each area, you can raise your level as a monster tamer. At level 0 monsters will not grow beyond level 9, level 1 cannot grow beyond 19, 2 is 29 and so on. But you also have respect points, which are awarded upon defeating a tamer, or levelling up. These points are needed for monster breeding now, and when you run out, you have to train your monsters or fight NPCs to get enough points for breeding. 

And just in time for the holidays, on December 18th, Monster Crown will receive a holiday patch that replaces Echelk in the wild with a red and green colored crossbreed that resembles a reindeer!

"Each card provides a dream dungeon. In the dungeon you'll be able to go up against strong crossbreeds of that monster"

And there’s more… Collectible cards and two new transformation teams!

With the new year approaching, new content packs are currently at works. One significant feature that will come to Monster Crown in early 2021, is collectible cards. When you purchase booster packs, you will get a random pull of cards –and some can be duplicates. Each card provides a dream dungeon. In the dungeon you'll be able to go up against strong crossbreeds of that monster. If you are knocked out you will lose any monsters you tamed using Dream Pacts, and your card is lost. If you reach the end, you get to keep your monsters, loot and your card becomes holographic, which mean you will never lose the card. Will you go after these cards to complete your holographic collection and win trading cards from in-game battles? 

The collectible cards are not all that’s currently being worked on for Monster Crown. More transformation teams await you in early 2021…  There are two new transformation items coming: Ferrorizer and Frostbite. The Ferrorizer item will hold the power to transform Madis, Ix, Ambigu and their crossbreeds. The Frostbite item will super transform Epheal, Hani, Walrus and their crossbreeds. Which transformation team do you like the most? Have a look at a sneak peek of the transformation items of Madis and Ephael below. 

If you want to learn more about Monster Crown, you can check out the trailer below. We're also very active on Discord, where you can ask us anything you'd like to know about the game. Interested to get your hands on Monster Crown and become a competitive battler? Head over to the Steam page below. 

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Monster Crown

Dive into a dark world where monsters rule and make pacts with them to defeat an evil young woman seeking power. Hunt, battle, tame and breed monsters to create your own legacy. Together with your monsters, you can restore the balance to Crown Island

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