I wanted to come up with something witty but I gave up after rewriting the intro a couple times over. So with all that said and done, let’s just get this over with so I can continue world-hopping in inhospitable worlds. Minecraft has never been my cup of tea but Dragon Quest Builders is! The first game that introduced me to mindless grinding over thousands of hours just coming up with the weirdest of shits and the craziest of even more shits. And while I tried almost every game similar, nothing seemed right. Boundless is no different, sorry! Having actual players in the world scare the shit out of me and giving complete freedom just sounded too good to be true.
I consider myself as the “worst best person” to come up and share my thoughts on this. I’m a huge sucker for story-based games and freedom is a scary word. Do what you want, live your life! For a person without an imagination, I end up spending the last hour or two hacking at a tree from god knows where not knowing said tree is owned by a real person other than myself. Damn you! Tr33Hugger69! Own a land they said, it’ll be fun they said… and so I did! Placed a beacon, fuelled it up with my hopes and dreams which apparently only last for 4 weeks… grabbed a few plots of land that I bought from the exchange tab with cubits and off I go to build an empire!
The worlds are vast and uhmm… just vast! Hop to a lush world filled with wildlife and greenery or grab the next portal to mine ores and rare metals. Spend some time in inhospitable worlds without brewing potions and choke to death or jump to a nearby lava pool to scrub off those alien cooties. Just watch out for falling meteorites! Everything is unique. Picking a world, a biome or the landscape offers a taste of everything but in new colors. Want a pink crafting table? We got a pink effing crafting table! Different colored blocks used during crafting becomes the color of the item crafted… so rock out your pink hammer or axe and be fabulous for the rest of its lifespan!
Crafting is fun but can also be very confusing at times, luckily there’s a knowledge tab for dummies… don’t know how to craft a bomb? Filter the selection and scroll over! While there is no search tab, the filter works just as good as long as you know what filter to look in, dummy!
And like I said freedom sounded too good to be true. Leveling at its core is what limits you to do certain things or simply make things paced a little bit slower. From things like digging, chopping or placing blocks, they’re influenced by your skills. Higher health pools to survive more attacks from spitters, wildstocks or hoppers seems like a good idea but so is dealing more damage towards blocks and a tool’s action speed. You can be a Jack or Jill of all trades or master one specialization at a time… leveling takes time and it’s simply your choice how to do it.
Gaining levels however can be done by all means of action. Placed a block? Have some EXP! Killed some wildlife? Here’s more EXP! Gathered wood or rocks? You know what’s coming! Died? Well… here take a penalty! Dying penalizes you by gaining less EXP for actions until you reach a certain amount of EXP earned. Better be careful not to do another lava bath next time around! The leveling system rewards players for simply doing anything other than dying… so while it is a good thing, gaining levels however take an awful amount of time if you’re not doing objectives so it’s always a good idea to do new things.
But let’s talk about people for a sec… I hate them… you’re probably one of them so… I’ll make an exception! Players populate the worlds. It’s an online-only game after all. Shared worlds between PC and PS4 makes for a very good experience and at times jaw-dropping when you see huge hubs and player-made settlements. Regions can be controlled by people given the amount of work they’ve done towards it. It’s a nice feature and adds player interaction… something I’m not really fond of but hey! Awesome settlements is always a good thing unless they’re Japanese people erecting sticks and balls in correspondence towards the first Sunday of April… thank god that’s passed though!
Controls and the interface is simple enough. You can equip any two items… one on each hand. Sixteen slots in total and switching between them is easy when you can pull up an item wheel that holds your specified equipment. The best feature though is inventory management. You can have as much as 9 items smart-stacked, be it different shades of wood trunks or rocks or even 9 different or similar hammers. Slotting them in the item wheel lets you use one of them and replaces it once the first is depleted or destroyed.
Graphics itself is better than Minecraft… thank god! Sadly, against big daddy MC, the game right now feels barebones with little content to show for. More things will be added but when exactly? At this point I find myself scratching my head wishing there should be more fun things to do other than chopping wood… or breaking rocks… or repeating the same process in that specific order.