Published on December 1st, 2014 | by Gary Mullen0
*Note that TerraTech is still in an early stages so this should be considered an Alpha Review, a full review will follow this on full release of this game when it leaves early release.*
TerraTech is a free roam building game where you build up a robot vehicle by creating/finding objects to make it more powerful. You start off with a single block, four wheels, and two weapons, with no end goal to speak of, instead you have a base which can convert materials into rendered materials which can then be sold or used to create parts for your vehicle.
The open world has several type of materials that you can harvest, which you do by either blasting them with your weapons, or if you have a big enough vehicle just smashing through them. As the materials are destroyed, this blasts off parts which you can transport back to your base. The transporting of the materials at the start is very annoying as you basically use a plough to push them back to base but the controls are very sensitive. However as you grow your vehicle you get what is in effect a tractor beam which hold the materials and it’s just a case of driving back to the base.
Once you have enough material back at your base you can instruct your base to either sell the material or turn it into something else. For most things, you have to refine the material then use it to build whatever you are wanting. Once an object is created you simply grab it with the mouse and drag it onto the vehicle, however only one designed item can sit built in the base at a time and until that part is moved out of the vortex, nothing new will get built (this does not include material or refined material).
If you don’t want to harvest stuff to build better parts for your vehicle, you can take the approach of hunting down some of the AI and blowing them up before stealing all there parts. I personally found this method the fastest way to create a great vehicle however it did have the downside of myself getting to cocky for my own good and ended up getting smashed by an AI.
Computer players are not just limited to the ‘bad guys’ you fight to steal their parts but you can build your own AI troops to go and harvest materials for you. This allows you to get more materials at a faster rate and allow you to create a larger vehicle from the materials collected or beef up your AI to ensure they can defend themselves from other AI. This does bring up the point that (as things stand) there is no full multiplayer in the main game however it was promised on the kickstarter page that it would happen at some point and that you would also be able to share vehicles on social media sites. This will be a key feature in the final release, the thought of teams of armies building up robot vehicles and entering a full scale war it just a great idea, and in all honestly, the first thing you think when playing this game is how much fun it be using your huge vehicle you’ve built to destroy your friends (or was that just me?).
The controls of the game are basic, they do what you would expect in games like this however there are many issues that occur due to the control system. The camera would slowly rotate to the front however I would prefer to keep it snapped to the front and only look around when I move the camera, where as the camera is at many times behind the game play so you can’t see what your fighting if its moving around a lot. The second issue with the controls is the creating of items. Until you lift the item you have created nothing else get created and in the beta I have found my created objects get stuck in the storage vortex of my base and if I have too many materials in the vortex, my objects go out of the screen and I can’t grab my item and thus can’t create more items which is rather annoying, a button to allow you to grab items from the vortex from a list would be a massive boost.
Steam flagged this game as supporting a controller. Considering it’s a drag and drop for making the vehicle, I was interested in how this worked…and it simply didn’t. The controller allowed me to move the vehicle around butas soon as I wanted to change my gamepad to my mouse and keyboard, which is totally useless from a point of playing a game, if the gamepad can’t do it all then it should not have enabled support. Now technically it’s not impossible for the controller to do it all by pressing a button to get into build mode, then using a ‘highlight and snap’ feature to build the vehicle but as this game stands today this is not possible.
The thing about this game is it has a lot of potential to be a great pc game that you could enjoy with friends, the advantage of getting in now before the multiplayer is you will be one step ahead when they do finally buy the game, you know what’s needed to make the best vehicle, where as they would do the same trial and error that all early access players are doing now. The logic I used at the start was ‘bigger was better’ however it was slower and harder to turn, so I learned that smaller would be the best solution for me otherwise I ended up like the above screenshot.
Game Website: http://terratechgame.com
Track the game progress: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/payloadstudios/terratech-physics-based-vehicle-construction-and-c/posts
One of the features I mentioned is missing and was coming soon is actually available
— TerraTech (@TerraTechGame) December 2, 2014
Summary: People try and compared this games to other games, however this game is just simply itself in it own beautiful unique way.