The Alpha phase of Hytale's development refers to the period from around April 2015 to present when the game has been in private development by Hypixel Studios. No versions of Alpha have ever been released to the public. This phase is set to end in or after 2023 with the release of Beta 1.0, beginning the Beta phase of development.
Alpha started development around April 2015 after EULA changes to Minecraft lead to a decrease in the revenue of the Hypixel server, leading to the developers at Hypixel Inc. deciding to make their own standalone game.
Hytale was officially announced on 13 December 2018, with the first screenshots and information about the game's development being released in the form of blog posts and a trailer. Since then, a multitude of blog posts has given further information about the development of the game.
The following features only appeared in screenshots and information detailed on Hytale.com, and from appearances in the Hytale trailer. These features would have gone through major changes throughout the game's six years of development.
- NPCs are creatures that inhabit the world. Factions are groups of these creatures that form small communities. Animals are peaceful, while monsters are hostile and will try to attack the player.
- Orbis is the first and main alterverse that the player spawns into and contains many different zones, which have different creatures, biomes and world generation.
- Many types of blocks make up the world of Hytale, and when broken will produce particle effects and drop items. Blocks and items can be collected in the player's inventory for them to use in crafting or building.
- Various prefabs generate throughout the world on its surface as well as underground, with their appearances differing between each zone.
- The Hytale Model Maker is a tool used to create assets for the game.
- Weapons can be used by the player to attack enemy creatures.
- Objectives give the player different tasks to complete in different areas.
- Multiplayer servers connect many different players into the same world.
- The soundtrack of the game is the music players hear while playing.
There have been no versions of Alpha released or even spoken about. Many screenshots of different Alpha versions have been released, although none show any version numbers.
An early screenshot of zone 1.
Another early screenshot of zone 1.
A screenshot of zone 1 from 2018.
- "The Road Ahead" by NoxyD. Hypixel Forums, 28 December 2016.
- "Hytale is a brand new game from giants of the Minecraft community, backed by Riot" – Eurogamer, 13 December 2018.
- "Summer 2021 development update" – Hytale Blog, 1 July 2021.
- "First Look: Hytale is putting adventure and creativity at the heart of its ambitious block-building sandbox" by Jen Simpkins. GamesRadar+, 24 February 2020.
- "Hytale is a Minecraft follow-up that remembers the Minigames" – RockPaperShotgun, 20 December 2018.