The next big thing is being square
When Minecraft came out in alpha, I was pumped. I loved the art style, I loved the concept, and thought that it would expand to be a full-fledged RPG adventure game with quests, goals, and the likes. Now I laugh as I see people freak out over the addition of one new animal (horses are so in right now) and no real gameplay changes. I was never one to play with Legos as a child, and building things in Minecraft is something I didn’t take an interest in either. This is where Cube World comes in, it gets ride of the building and gives me everything I had hoped for from Minecraft.
Cube World starts by having you build a character from eight playable races, ranging from humans to frogmen and the undead, with more on the way. Customization options include different faces, hair colors, classes, and of course gender. Classes consist of rangers, mages, warriors, and Rogues with more coming in the future as well. Rangers are raged, mages cast spells and can heal party members, warriors are tanky melee characters and rogues are agile assassins. Each class has its own specialization, which can be changed after the fact, that allows you to build different skills per class.
After creating a character, you are dropped into a voxel-based land with no instructions, which is expected being in alpha and all. Pressing ESC will give you a menu that acts as a shortcut to other menus such as crafting, controls, inventory, and the likes. Checking out the keyboard controls are very useful, especially if you don’t play many games on PC.
After getting familiar with controls, and checking your large world map, the first place you’ll probably head to is the nearest town. In towns you can buy weapons and armor that are class-specific, re-class your specialization, and sell and craft items. Townsfolk will talk to you, some of them telling you about specific places and marking them on your map to discover, which are the basic quests built into the alpha. Most of your time will be spent exploring on your own or, in my case, taming pets.
A large amount of pets exist in the game, from cats, collies, and camels to horses, beetles, and turtles. Most pets can be ridden, many of them will attack enemies, and some of them provide healing powers to you and your fellow players. Pets are obtained by feeding the correct food to your desired species of animal. I’ve found myself telling other players that I have to “catch’em all”; pets can be leveled just like your character and there are plans to allow them to evolve.
Once you have familiarized yourself with the game, you will surely want to gather a group of up to 4 people total (unless you use mods that allow up to 255) to tackle quests, be them dungeons, boss fights or just finding new lands. The game really shines when you have a group of four players with four different classes, as the classes work really well together. Multiplayer can take place on a home network or across the internet if you’d like to host a server, something that is easily done.
Right now your main goals are exploring, killing enemies, completing boss quests, collecting money, finding items drops, and crafting more and more powerful weapons. The crafting system is rather simple to follow, as it tells you specifically the materials you need, some of which can be obtained just by picking them up. Others have to be made, such as silk yarn formed from cotton. Recipes are often dropped by enemies upon death, and these can be used to make anything from armor and weapons to healing items. Weapons can also be upgraded by applying cubes to them, which also allow you to shape your items in game.
Speaking of exploring, the world map never ends (or at least the game creators say no player will ever reach its end) and includes eight different environments at the moment. Environments include greenlands, snowlands, lava lands, jungles, oceans, and deserts. They all vary in enemies, pets, graphical styles, and dungeons. The game world is randomly generated based on “seeds” or a random number you type in to generate the world. If you find a seed that you really enjoy or has great items you can share these with friends. Currently, online play is always on the same seed, unless of course you modify some files.
Combat is relatively simple and easy to pick up. Left-click does your basic attack, which can charge your secondary attack (being your right-click) depending on your class. Currently, classes have three abilities each they can unlock which are mapped to number keys. Middle-click allows you to roll, which prevents damage for a brief period of time. Combat is very satisfying, be it taken down a large mob with a boss monster, or just killing some cows to gain more experience.
It is hard to believe that this game has been created from the ground up by two people (husband and wife) on their own time, with no help from any site with the likes of Kickstarter. Its main creator had even scored a job with Mojang, the creators of Minecraft, and turned down the job to stay more independent. The game already has vast Wikis, and a rather large and active subreddit which features cool screenshots, mods and the likes. People wanted this game so bad that every time the game was available for purchase in the first two weeks, it was as if the site was getting DDOS’ed, causing people to create a website that checks whether or not the site was available automatically and inform them.
The game is in alpha and currently must be purchased from the creator’s website and cost roughly $19. It is the most content rich and stable alpha I have ever played and I can’t wait to see what is added in future updates. If you purchase the alpha, feel free to join our multiplayer server on the default seed and say hello. Server: 184.108.40.206