Nintendo 3DS last month finally got a cup of tea of Minecraft-inspired games. Besides the new batch of Harvest Moon (do not get confused with Story of Seasons), its spirit is also bottled into new game I will review in this article. The name is Battleminer, and it is developed by Woobly Tooth.
I myself have not really gotten into Minecraft, only watched some creations in one go (mostly educational-serving one). I once pointed out that Minecraft (and its derivations) is basically a digital Lego. Would Battleminer be one of those block-building games?
Battleminer brings two premises into the game: Survival and Creative mode. Instead of killing zombies in Survival mode, you will face more natural enemies: Ants. Just like in the real world, the game shows us that Ants are actually more common than mankind. In Creative mode, you may choose to live with or without Ants – just please build your fortress first or they will dethrone you from the top of food pyramid system.
The world sets in a barren land with few trees and unhabitated houses. Through Survival mode, you will follow the compass to find other mankind taken into custody by Ants. Saving them will grant you new recipes and materials. Such items will be needed, since the stronger you are, the stronger – and evolved – Ants you will meet. The 1st person perspective is neat enough to control, both in gathering materials and in battle. You might need some time to adapt – especially if you never going FPS using joystick – but you will not spend too much time trying how to control your character.
Shooting Ants to death is actually easy; you can do that from afar, but you will miss the chance to scavenge on their corpses since the corpses vanish quickly. Scavenging is important, since the corpses contain ingredients strengthening your attack. There are times, too, when Night Ants show up from nowhere. Fight or flight, you have to make decision. The material is limited, and once your weapon is broken or your ammo runs out, you have to collect the necessary items. It feels like being in Stone Age, when hunting and gathering is the only way to survive.
Creative mode serves for players who choose not to take a dose of adrenaline, instead, oxytocin – your dose of happiness. Just like the name implies, this mode lets you to build your own creation – buildings, castles, terrains – with all blocks you already have in your inventory. You might want to see your own pyramid from the sky; it is possible since in Creative mode you can fly.
One awesome accompanying feature in Battleminer is the music. The scores change during day/night cycle, sometime into silence, sometime into provoking theme. You will not even miss the sound of the wind, your own footsteps, and even when Ants make noises. All of them suit perfectly into the game, and they would sweep your boredom while taking endless step through the barren land of survival. Jumping ability became a small problem for me, since I had to touch the icon in the bottom screen while also controlling my movement. Nevertheless, Battleminer keeps being a simple yet engaging game. You may purchase it in the Nintendo 3DS eShop for $9.99.