The Adventure mode, which is playable alone or in co-op, places you in a randomly-generated fantasy world, but despite that, Hytale's world has a predefined history and its own races. It combines the kind of gameplay which is standard for sandbox games of this style with deep RPG elements. There are also handmade quests to tackle, as well as boss encounters that'll take more than a powerful weapon and a good set of armor to conquer. Of course, you still have the ability to build a house, make a living, and put off the world-saving until later.
Minigames are quite a familiar aspect for Hypixel Studios, as they've been making them for years (more on that later). They've not only brought back their old ones, but created brand new games for you to enjoy and, of course, you can also make your own. Speaking of making your own things, Hytale has a large focus on player creativity, and not just the block-placing kind. There's a large slate of modding tools (which were used to make the game), including an all-in-one modelling, texturing, and animation tool that lets you make your own assets, named the Hytale Model Maker. Every aspect of the game can be modded, down to damage values. There are cinematic tools that allow for machinima creation using game models. In-game scripting also exists, which lets you create or change scripts and see the results live. All of these pillars can be combined with player-made community servers in order to form them into whatever you want.
The name "Hypixel" will sound familiar to fans of Minecraft, as Hypixel, Inc. is responsible for creating the game's most popular server and its many minigames (some are listed here), but eventually, the modders responsible for said minigames began hitting Minecraft's limits and were continually forced to find workarounds. With a desire to become full-on game developers, 40+ members split off to form their own team and started making Hytale in 2015; their creativity was now unhindered and allowed to roam free. Hypixel Studios was officially established in 2018 with the financial aid of Riot Games (yes, that Riot Games) and a group of game development veterans and experts in the industry, and the money also allowed them to bump up their production values.
The game was originally due for 2021, but after some shifts in the way the game is developed, it was delayed to "2023 at the earliest".
Hytale's teasers and promotional material provides examples of:
- Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti: Yetis roam the icy landscapes of zone 3, and as shown in the announcement trailer, one of their methods of attack is to pull a chunk out of the snow-covered ground and toss it at you.
- Character Customization: A brief timelapse in the announcement trailer showcases a large number of options for a player to customize their character with, including hair styles and clothing.
- Flaming Sword: An adventurer is seen brandishing a fiery sword against a yeti in the announcement trailer.
- Grid Inventory: "A Sneak Peak at Hytales User Interface" goes to show off five rows of nine.
- Hearts Are Health: The UI sneak peak shows a heart icon accompanied by "100/100".
- Helicopter Pack: The back-propeller is exactly as the name implies; it's a mechanical propeller you wear on your back. It allows you to fly around your environment. It can be briefly seen in the announcement trailer if you look close enough.
- Minecart Madness: A scene from the announcement trailer showcases a cave explorer hurtling down tracks in a minecart and jumping across a gap with it at one point.
- Night of the Living Mooks: Both the reveal trailer and several media images show that the classic duo of skeletons and zombies are a common set of monster enemies through out Orbis.
- One-Word Title: The debut name of "Hytale" and the working title of "Standalone".
- Underwater Ruins: A brief section of the announcement trailer shows a scuba-clad adventurer heading towards a shipwreck.