I just read a developer comment on the mdsoa steam page that the writing for Echoes hasn't started yet. This page asking for pre-orders specifically says, "Coming in Summer 2017." How can the game be released this season then?
The writing hasn't started
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Will all routes be released at once for this VN or will they be staggered like in the first game?
All at once. It is a game with a common route. We won't likely ever do a game quite like MDSOA in terms of how we released it again.