Thursday, May 19, 2011

Terraria - Enchanted Boomerang and what progression should be

Last night was a little bit of a turning moment for me with Terraria, I mean it had been fun then it hit the "Oh yeah!" moment, I found myself an Enchanted Boomerang and felt some serious power. I mean I had a decent sword for that point of the game and I had a bow, but for some reason throwing that quick super powerful little item was a hell of a lot of fun. Granted it's not the most effective way of killing off mobs, but it sure is a hoot. The best part had to be when I found it, I made the little Zelda sound like when you get an item, da dada dummm.

And you know what, finding chests is a good thing. There is nothing quite like finding a drop or an item that makes you instantly feel more powerful. Here I am trudging away with my sword killing slimes and then all of a sudden I'll tossing around this magic item and just destroying them. THAT IS PROGRESSION, when the gameplay itself changes due to the items that you either make or find, and not just another +2 to Strength so that you can now fight level 5 monsters rather than level 4 monsters. This is what was bothering me with Rift and other MMO's that I just couldn't put my finger on, it's the same game from level 2 up to level 60 (or whatever the max is). In Terraria I went from a sword and a bow to now a boomerang. Later I'll have guns, the ability to swim and the ability to fly, who knows what else. It isn't leveling, but it is a step by step process to make my character more and more powerful. THAT is the reason for the loot, to make you feel more powerful in the game you're playing, not just to find a new shiny toy that has marginally better stats. And then I turn around and use that new toy on new monsters that are tougher that I couldn't have taken on before.

And item progression isn't a new thing, it's been in FPS games since day one, you start off with a pistol or your fists, or something of that nature and end up with a BFG 9000 that levels the place once your done. The mobs get harder, but you're more capable of taking them on because you've got better tools, the scaling works excellently. Now you have FPS games that are adopting RPG elements, ok fine, but RPG games should adopt this item/gameplay progression as well. This is why I see such great potential in MC, it's an RPG game, but it has so many FPS elements in it that it's so untreditional. And the fact it's a building sandbox, all the better.

Ok enough with my soapbox

With my new toy I felt a new sense of confidence and decided that it was time to go take out some corruption. I made my way to the left to where I knew there was corruption. The first time I had been there I was just checking it out and started to get flooded with baddies, this time I thought, "Oh yeah bitches, I have a magic boomerang, you're going down!" Once I got there though I was handed a quick reality check, those flying pincher things were everywhere. I fell down a short hole and one after one they came after me. It was a stalemate because with my boomerang they couldn't get to me, but I couldn't climb out. Eventually I made it to the surface and then had to deal with them flying in from both sides. Holy crap it was just like my gameplaying days of a long time ago, I can't even remember the last time I was playing a platformer.

The rest of the evening was spent diving down to the depths of the caverns that I found. I did find some skeletons and mother slimes, but nothing else really note worthy. Having a depth meter is a nice addition so that I know how far down I am. Last night about 400 feet below. Exploring caves and digging out ore is cool in Terraria, but I still think that MC is better. In MC you never know when you're going to find that Creeper around the corner waiting for you, so that constant thrill just isn't the same.

Tonight will be more Terraria. I keep saying this like someone is reading, but I love MC and just wish that it had more to do in it. In my perfect world, I'd make those two games have a child and that child would be the greatest game evar!

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