Minecraft 1.8 May Loosen Terraria’s Grip
Ever since I picked up Terraria on a Steam sale I haven’t played much of Minecraft. The two-man team that built Terraria — the retro-looking, side-scrolling game called “Minecraft in 2D” — really did an excellent job giving players something to do. Why do you dig? To find the gold chests and get magic items, to dig up ore to forge better tools and armor, and to slay monsters and collect cash and items used to make still other useful tools and gadgets. How does a grappling hook strike you? How about a depth finder to know just where you can plant glowing mushrooms to harvest for potions? How about a set of “social” armor so that you can keep the protection of your hard-earned gold helmet while looking like you’re just wearing sunglasses? Throw in a few boss monster encounters and different NPC vendors that will show up if you make a little house for them and there’s quite a something-to-do ecosystem on tap.
It doesn’t hurt that they make sure your pickaxe and other things don’t break when you use them, unlike Minecraft. That fact alone has made my two older kids intensely intersted in playing Terraria, so much so that I bought a second copy, gifted it to my wife’s previously unused Steam account, and put it on my wife’s computer and in front of my oldest daughter.
The 1.8 update to Minecraft looks to tilt the balance back in its own favor in a big way. A new Create mode will allow flying and unlimited building, ameliorating the irritation of breaking pickaxes and not enough of one resource or another and including the ability to flag specific users on a server to have that capability. A revamp of the Survival mode will have a lot in store for us, too. The advent of NPC villages, underground dungeons, the beginnings of a new experience system, a new hunger and healing system, a new fighting mechanic including critical hits and the need to pull back the bow before firing, along with the scary new Enderman mob promises to drive us out of our painstakingly built caves and homes and out into the wider world.
Look for the features of 1.8 to roll out in at least two updates as 1.8 and 1.9 within the next month or so.Tags: Minecraft, Mojang, PC, Terraria