Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to the King of all Indie Games: Minecraft. Has the game already been out on the Xbox 360 for two weeks? I guess I’m a little late to the party and didn’t get this out on time as I expected to. This little ‘collecting & building’ game created by Notch and crew over at Mojang has revolutionized the way nerds play "virtual LEGOs."
Instead of paying $40 for a small set of LEGOs, why not just pay $20 for unlimited virtual fun? That’s exactly what nerds have been doing since Minecraft gained popularity a few years ago and now it’s on Xbox Live Arcade. How does it compare to other Xbox Live Arcade titles?
BUILDING 'TIL I CAN'T BUILD ANYMORE
Simple yet Great Gameplay - Minecraft is one of the most simple games with the most complex results that gamers can get their hands on right now. Immediately, you start out mining and building structures to keep you safe from all the monsters of the night while during the day you collect resources in order to make your palace larger and more awesome.
Unfortunately for some, this game is full of grinding and will get really tedious after a hour or so. Minecraft is definitely not meant for the frat boys who mainly play Call of Duty as the rewarding feeling of getting killstreaks is no where within reach for the kind of gameplay that Minecraft gives players. The rewarding feeling that you get from Minecraft is the success of finding out new ways to create different resources and farming different plants, whether they’re wheat or trees.
PC Integration & Online Multiplayer - The main feature of Minecraft is being able to play the game with friends online and next to each other on the couch. Featuring two player split-screen and sixteen player online play, the game is meant to be played with multiple people and works great if you keep your NAT (network address translation) open. I’ll be looking forward to play Minecraft for years to come online!
Integrating gamers between the PC and Xbox 360 hasn’t been done since Shadowrun came out back in 2007. Since 2008, gamers haven’t been able to play between the two platforms and unfortunately they still can’t currently. Unannounced, Mojang and 4J excluded the playability between the platforms and probably won’t be bringing this feature for a while. Until then, we’ll wait and just mine on the 360 with other Xbox friends.
OH NO, IT'S A CREEPER!
No Survival Mode - One of the parts of Minecraft that I was looking forward to most was Survival Mode but unfortunately currently the Xbox 360 version features only what is available for the free PC version of Minecraft. Maybe, this is a problem for some for the fact that in order to get it on the Xbox 360 they have to spend $20 to just get what is available for free on PC.
In order to make the game worth it to the masses, Mojang and 4J need to update the game featuring what is available for the purchasable version or at least create a balance so gamers don’t feel like they being ripped off. When an update comes, we’ll be sure to tell you guys what was added and what improvements were made for the overall experience.
Minecraft is a game that comes once in a console generation that surprises gamers who don’t expect to be fun. This is not the full game that gamers, deserve though. The true way to play Minecraft is still over on the PC as the PC version features the Survival Mode which creates a longer gameplay experience. As the full PC version is still $27 compared to the the Xbox 360’s version being $20, I think some fans of the game would have been willing to pay that extra $7 to get the full experience.
Mojang and 4J brought a great experience from the PC and translated it exactly as gamers wanted it to be minus a few missing pieces. Either way, the game is great and anyone who is interested in creating some interesting buildings or structures in a virtual world should check out the game. Who knows, maybe we’ll get the full game experience through (free) DLC?