Lately I’ve seen a trend in gaming that seems intriguing. It looks like we’ve got a new iteration on the Minecraft genre – games that involve self-created vehicles that are realized with voxel technology and completely independent components. We’ve got another iteration of games on the way that you, as a potential game creator or professional, should follow.
(By the way, yes, I called Minecraft a genre. I consider Minecraft to be a game that is both a game, but also has a general, archetypical nature that makes it a genre as well. Anyway, on with the post.)
So first up, we have From The Depths, a game of sea and air battles where one builds vehicles, block by block, and takes them into battle. It seems to focus mostly on sea born battles, both ship-to-ship and ship-to-monster with aerial elements secondary. Though the trailer shows somewhat crude graphics, it’s still evolving – and still amazing, as simulating water and buoyancy has to be insanely hard.
However, shortly after I saw From The Depths, a friend sent me a link to Star-Made, which is a game of space exploration. There are procedurally generated worlds, asteroids, and space stations – and one also constructs spacecraft block by block. Merely pursuing the videos is fascinating as a great deal of thought went into both the simplicity and the complexity of the game, and tools to bridge the two.
(I’d also add there is also the release of the module-but-not-cube based game Kerbal Space Program, which also came out recently, and encourages me to think there is a construct-vehicle trend in games anyway).
Seeing two games with such prominently similar features – procedural worlds and block-based vehicle design makes me think “we’ve got a trend here.” Namely, “Minecraft meets mobile stuff”
Now this isn’t exactly new. There have been plenty of vehicle-based games. We’ve seen some pretty complex stuff before like Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Boldsm which was a module-based vehicle creation game, just one with an insane amount of parts. But we’re in a bit of different times.
The Minecraft genre is pretty popular and has many game out or coming out that seem to build on its core ideas over the years. This one has me interested.
People love Minecraft and its relations. But there’s always more to do – and making big moving things that do other things (like blow things up) is going to be popular. There also seems to be a love of the “blocky” games since both construction and destruction follow logical, geometric patterns – which gets even more exciting with huge machines (just watch the StarMade episode where the pirate hunting and battle damage is demonstrated). This seems like a logical trend to have developed.
If you’re in game development keep an eye on this trend (OK, potential trend). If I may, it would be really nice to have a game where you built mecha like this and fought monsters. You know, nothing more than building a 400 foot talk walking structure, climbing into it, and beating up giant voxel baddies.
Just a suggestion . . . because I think we have a trend.
Also I want my mecha-punching game.