Terraria and Minecraft are probably the two biggest sandbox games on the market. They both have gotten overwhelmingly positive reviews, and millions of people across the globe login and play every day. But what sets these two games apart? Which is better? Well, for the next few weeks, I’m comparing all the different aspects of both games! This week? The gameplay!
Gameplay wise, each game is essentially identical. You’ve got to make swords with ores from the ground, and then hit monsters. Both these games fit that description. So what’s the biggest difference? The first thing that comes to mind is the dimensions in which each game is set. Minecraft is a 3D exploration game, driven by the player’s creativity and inspiration. Terraria is a 2D game with much the same idea, but without the extra dimension. Your survival is dependent on your resources, and you have almost no chance of staying alive without the next tier of armour.
Minecraft doesn’t share that trait. You can go a week without hitting a zombie, and with peaceful mode, you could go on forever without ever getting in a fight! This makes Minecraft way easier, but is that the best thing for a game? Sure, it’s fun to build for a while, but there’s no challenge. The ever present danger in Terraria keeps you alert, and makes it much more enjoyable to play. As well as that, upon death in Terraria, you don’t drop items in normal mode. You drop half the coins in your inventory, which can be annoying, but ironically makes dying much less painful. A death in Minecraft means five minutes until all your resources are gone, and a death in Minecraft’s hardmode means your entire world is gone.
But what are the downsides? Well, one thing about Minecraft’s gameplay that annoys me is that there’s no auto-pause feature. This means that going into your inventory leaves you totally vulnerable to skeletons and creepers, making it super easy for you to get killed. As well as no auto-pause, in Minecraft, making a new world requires you to make all new items. In Terraria you can carry your stuff from world to world, making setting up a new base much easier. This can be a drag in Minecraft, as making a new house and new weaponry can be a tedious task. But enough about Minecraft! What are the downsides to Terraria?
Well, the one thing that annoys me most about Terraria’s gameplay is in the console edition. When you enter your inventory, the inventory page takes up the entire screen, so you have little-to-no idea of what’s coming or how to defend yourself. As well as that, it doesn’t feature an auto-pause setting either, so there’s no way to protect yourself unless you build yourself a little box to check your inventory in.
Personally, I think Terraria is the winner in the gameplay category. There are so many things to discover whilst playing, and with almost anything around the corner, you’ll have to play non-stop for it to even begin to get dull!