July 16, 2011

Some thoughts on Terraria.

When I'm not busy drowning in the woe that my job seems to be full of these days, I'm escaping with video games.  One of the ones I was surprised I even got into was Terraria.

Mystic and I bought a four pack or Terraria in hopes of being able to enjoy the multiplayer.  We haven't been able to hook it up but I decided to try it on my own.  At first it's very slow.  Like Minecraft, you start out with nothing and there are no real instructions as to what you can do in the world.  I played for 30 minutes and gave it a break for after a week.  

I decided to give it another try.  But this time I decided to use the help of the Terraria wiki whenever I got tripped up.  And that has made the difference.

Sure, you may be a person who loves to discover stuff on your own, but then you'll be missing out on some very vital information.  And although I love exploring things I don't like getting killed all the time.  With the wiki behind the window playing Terraria, I was able to fully enjoy the game.

You do get all the materials to make everything you want to make, which forces you to explore.  And exploring is half the point of this game.  There are multiple terrains and dangerous areas to explore.  Sure you could walk side to side, but if you want any kind of significant swag you have to dig underground.  If you don't explore underground, you're missing out on most of the game.  

Crafting the things you need to becoming the best fighter available is easy to do, since you don't have to memorize how to make stuff.  If you find something that you think might be useful, go the the Guide NPC go through the prompts to ask what you can make with it.  And your crafting table will tell you everything you can make with your inventory.

So gearing yourself up is one part, but the other part is making a little town.  As you fulfill certain parameters, more people will flock to where you live.  But they need houses.  So you have to make them houses.  however, you also have to protect these houses.  This is a great thing to find out when a horde of zombies is overrunning what you built and you have to protect it from all sides.  Depending on how you built everything, it's not that easy.  Multiple doors mean multiple deaths, which means losing half that money you earned from traversing those caverns.  Keeping people in your town is totally worth it too.  They're not just random people.  They can heal you and sell you extra goodies that are hard to find.  They're useful, so don't just let them die on you.

Except the Guide, he is totally annoying.

Like Minecraft, Terraria is a game about what you as a player would like.  Here's a world full of stuff--now do something with it.  It's definitely fun if you're good at making your own goals and enjoying the excitement of finding something you've never seen before.  Is it a Minecraft clone?  No.  This is definitely more about fighting monsters and getting hidden treasure then Minecraft originally intended to be.  I personally like that more.  Also, I am more partial to the 16bit 2D world for some reason.  Nostalgia maybe, but it's still my preference.  Regardless, explorers and crafters in video games will like this one, and should definitely give it a try.

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