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Black Gold beta targeted for early 2014

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Snail Games is planning to launch a closed beta for its Victorian steampunk MMO Black Gold in early 2014, according to a new post on the company's blog.

"The first closed beta is planned to launch at the earliest Q1 2014," stated the post. "We are ensuring quality when it's ready to meet the public eye." Snail added that, "all players who have registered prior will have a high chance of receiving first round of beta codes via their email."

Codes that were handed out during E3 2013, where the company unveiled a trailer for the game, will also be valid for beta redemption. "The beta will feature substantial upgrades in terms of gameplay progression and combat system compared to the E3 showcase," added the post.

According to Snail Games — best known for free-to-play MMOs like Age of Wushu and Heroes of Gaia Black Gold is a "massive world with action-packed combat that redefines the boundary of vehicular warfare."

Back in June, producer Colin Miller told Polygon that the game's design will give it a unique feel. "There are a lot of games that have steampunk in it, but I'm not familiar with many that make it the central theme of the entire experience," he said. "Fantasy and steampunk are in a lot of popular games, but they're never pitted against each other. That's the interesting dynamic here; you get to choose your side and give your in-game identity a really different feel."