Canadian dev studio Novaquark has been slowly building up their space MMORPG Dual Universe since 2018, holding closed alpha tests (which you can still join) and gearing up for a hoped-for 2021 full release. This summer they’re moving to beta testing and, in preparation, they’re beefing up the character avatar designs.

This redesign comes shortly after the first alpha test of the game’s PvP battle mode, which happened last month. Dual Universe gives you the ability to customize a massive spaceship and recruit a crew, then face massive PvP battles with rival ships controlled by other players. When you find yourself at war, your ship’s size, construction, and arsenal will be contributing factors in victory or defeat, as well as your battle strategy.

“The goal of this redesign was not only to create something functional and realistic for interstellar travel, but as well come up with something memorable, appealing, and instantly recognizable,” says Novaquark. This same update will add more character animations, but emotes won’t be functional until the beta.

Speaking of…Novaquark has finally set a date for the beta launch. They promised summer, and they’re just barely going to make it: August 27 is the date. You can gain access to Dual Universe (and the beta, when it launches) for $60. Check out the website for more infomation. The full game is scheduled to be completed in 2021.