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Crea: Make Stuff, Hit Stuff, Throw a Fireball

Company: Siege Games

In short, Crea is a moddable sandbox game in the same genre as Terraria and Minecraft. Itís got your crafting, your monsters, your weapons, your building, and a bit of magic to boot. Multiplayer is also available, though it seems thereís no lobby right now, so youíll need to connect directly to your host. Right now, the game is in Early Access on Steam, and no promises are made as to the completeness of the game. Still, the potential is easy to see.

One thing that Crea really seems to have going for it is the detailed look. While the low-resolution, pixelized look is in style, Crea is a bit of a breath of fresh air. The creatures and backgrounds are detailed, and the world is softly lit. It would be great to see this on a bigger screen than my poor 17 inch computer monitor. The level of detail allows a great variation of environments to be more richly conveyed. There are bamboo stalks in the greener, tropical areas, and bright red, leafy trees in another. There are trees that look like they have tufts of fluffy pink cotton candy at their tops. The creatures are even more interesting. Iíve run into strange oil creatures with white masks, lizards with orange tufts of hair, and lots and lots of sheep.

The bosses and the creature control aspects of Crea seem to set it apart from other games in this genre as well. Coming across a gigantic version of the simple monster you just had trouble putting down is a great motivation to go back and craft a better weapon or level your character a bit. The combat looks like it can get crazy. Some basic platformer techniques will get you pretty far, but combining all your skills can make things far more interesting. The choice of magic, weapons, and general leveling gives you plenty of options on how you like to play. And then there are the Gaia crystals and the mysterious power of Remna, which you can eventually tap into.

Creaís creators make no bones about the influence of Terraria and Minecraft on their game. But if Terraria is simply a side-scrolling Minecraft, then where does that leave Crea? Of course, that is an oversimplification; the games are not mirrors of each other, and there is plenty that distinguishes each game. Creaís look is a bit more fine and higher resolution. The lighting is soft and varied. There seems to be a bit more complexity here than a game like Terraria. The creatures are so strange, deadly, and beautiful, with unique habits. It feels like thereís a story bubbling just below the surface. And thatís a lot of what makes it a perfect sandbox game. The player gets just enough substance to play with and ponder over. Then the spark of creativity is left to the player. Add that to the fact that modding is encouraged, and youíve got some real potential.

-Fights with Fire, GameVortex Communications
AKA Christin Deville

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