Review: Terraria (PC)

So a couple of months ago I was browsing the usual gaming shops when a colourful box with the aforementioned title on it. This  was my first experience of Terraria. I seem to have missed it existence altogether until this point so I decided to ask the guy behind the counter what it was all about as all I could see was a 2D version of Mincraft it seemed.

Beautiful visuals

After about 20 minutes he finally stopped raving about the game (presumably to take a breath). So before he carried on I quickly said “I’ll take it!”. Now to be honest it was a pleasure to hear someone talk about a game in such a passionate way, and the excitement must have rubbed off on me so as mentioned I decided to buy it (£15 new if you’re interested).

Now for those of you, like me, who have never heard of this game it is basically a mining style adventure game. Think of Minecraft with more bosses and enemies to fight. The first thing you’ll notice is that the visuals of this game are really cool! Bright colourful and it looks like it came straight from the SNES era (which is obviously a plus) and the design of the characters is just as carefully done.  As always thought looks are only skin deep so lets see what it’s like to play.

First off you’re dumped (much like Minecraft) in the middle of nowhere and that’s how it starts, before long this (rather annoying) gentleman appears and seems to be some sort of guide/tutor to explain how to get started.  Now it took me about 30 mins before I figured out how to even chop something up due to the distinct lack of any manual or explanation of what the controls were.  I eventually had to Google the answers… Once I had this sorted though I was flying, before long I had a basic house and some good tools to get mining.  It’s worth mentioning also that you are best to get the wiki page up on your mobile while playing this as like Minecraft it doesn’t tell you a thing about how to craft anything.  So I now have a house to protect me and some tools to go digging so what am I waiting for? LET’S DO THIS!

I hate cold callers!

Before long I’m down deep up to my eyebrows in stone and dirt mining like a SOB when all of a sudden some zombies start having a pop at me! This is clearly an act of war so I showed them exactly how deadly a pickaxe can be. Zombies dispatched I returned to my house with my goods to start building. This is where some problems arise I’m afraid.

A quick look at the Terraria Wiki will tell you that a lot of the craftable items in it are basically the same as in Minecraft, don’t get me wrong there are only so many ways you can make a sword but you can’t help that a lot of the crafting is all too familiar. So once you have got the desired items/materials you quickly find yourself doing exactly what you would in Minecraft  but in 2D.  However it’s not all doom and  gloom as the sheer number of items craftable and the variety of types of armour/tools/weapons is far superior to it’s 3D counter part.  So there is plenty of fun to be had with the level of detail you can give your structural creation, any budding Christopher Wrens would love this aspect.

The whole similarity thing aside the rest of the game is actually quite enjoyable! The range of enemies is really cool! From Zombies to bouncing  blobs to Giant flying eyeballs it never get’s boring. Even the death of them is quite a treat as they splat into pieces and bounce across the floor! 🙂

One thing to warn you about are the bosses.  They are fiendishly difficult on single player mode! This, however, is where I think another aspect of Terraria differs to Minecraft. The multiplayer aspect lends itself perfectly to the adventuring style of the game! Get yourself a couple of mates on a skirmish and it will soon feel like a good old game of dungeons and dragons! One favourite of mine was a giant flying eyeball that fires smaller eyeballs at you whilst trying to eat you! My only criticism of the boss battles is the method in which you come across them, obscure to say the least.  I won’t spoil the first one for you but I guarantee you’ll need that Wiki again to figure it out.  Once you’ve (finally) destroyed your first boss you should find the crafting and therefore increased exploration quickly takes off! Especially if you’re inclined more towards playing with friends

What you lookin’ at!?

One other point that sets it apart from it’s obvious counterpart is the ability for you to build a little town and have useful people move in! For instance some of the people that you can get are a nurse (behave!) a shop keeper and a demolitions expert. Plus many more! All these will help you in your quest to conquer the entire 2D realm.

To summarise this game up I would have to make some obvious comparisons to the only real game like it. It’s style of adventure and crafting is no different (apart from variety) to Minecraft, you mine, build and fight things.  Not only that but like I mentioned I soon found myself  doing the same things that I’d do on Minecraft and I fail to see where this game is better at that to be honest. Where this game IS better is the sense of adventure you have and the people & enemies you come across. Also the scale of  the crafting should keep you busy for quite some time.  The controls are fiddly to be honest but nothing you can’t get used to after an hour or so.

So in essence if you want to build, craft and explore vast environments and landscapes buy Minecraft. If you want to build some amour, a sword just so you can go kick some giant earthworms ass and loot it’s corpse then buy this it’s much more fun, it even has a light sabre you can craft for the job of gory violence now who doesn’t want one of them?…Exaclty!

Visuals 9.5/10

Gameplay 7/10

Music 5/10 (nothing special really)

Overall 7.2/10

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