Alpha testing access is available to people who pre-ordered the Special Edition (http://www.naturalselection2.com/buy). The release date was July 26th 10pm eastern, with Build 149. The last Alpha build was Build 154.
Beta testing access is available to people who pre-order either the Standard Edition or Special Edition (http://www.naturalselection2.com/buy), limited to 10,000 participants. The Beta phase began on November 19, 2010 with Build 155. See the Patches page for a list of chronological changes.
Natural Selection 2 can be preordered directly from Steam Store as of September 4, 2012. The game is scheduled for release on October 31, 2012 (Halloween).
Minimum requirements: a 1.2 GHz Processor, 256MB RAM, a DirectX 9 level graphics card, Windows Vista/2000/XP, mouse, keyboard and an internet connection (FAQ).
- NS2 is planned to be available for purchase at the Steam store, although this is not confirmed (Forum Post by Max).
- NS2 is currently available for pre-order, see below.
- Standard Edition: includes the full version when it comes out (direct download), and access to beta and tools.
- Special Edition: includes the full version when it comes out (direct download), access to alpha, beta and tools, gives you special black marine armor in game, and the eternal gratitude of UWE.
Pre-orders are available at the NS2 website.
Steam vs. Non-Steam versions: There has been some confusion over pre-ordering the game directly from Unknown Worlds Entertainment rather than from the Steam Store (if it is available for purchase on the Steam Store) and what this means (Pre-order FAQ, twitter update, twitter update). There is only one "version" of the game, but there may be multiple ways to purchase the game. Regardless of where you purchase the game, once you install it, it's playable only through Steam and so the experience is the same:
- "The right way to think about it is like Team Fortress 2. It's a Steamworks game that you can buy from the Steam store. You can also buy it in Best Buy in a box, but you're getting exactly the same thing and exactly the same services. Once you've installed it, you have exactly the same experience as if you bought it from the Steam store." (Forum post by Max)
- See also: Steamworks.
NS2 Technology Release
- Main article: NS2TR.