Guncraft is a new Steam Green-light game, hoping to get published. It also passed through Kick-Starter. First impressions of the name would lead you to think this is just another of the many mods for Minecraft, in fact looking at some YouTube gameplay, you would be forgiven for still thinking this. Guncraft is a voxel based FPS, whose style is heavily based on Minecraft, with textures also seemingly following the 16×16 resolution. Thankfully the game has been programmed in a variant of C, which means unlike Minecraft and Java, it runs much smoother.
Following the Minecraft side of things, you have the ability to fully construct your own levels alone or together with a friend, allowing you to put some of your Minecraft skills to work in building a multi-story hotel to fight your way up, or building an underground cave system. There really isn’t much to say, if you’ve played Minecraft you already know what you’re getting here. A nice addition is prefabs, which are pre-set structures such as bunkers that can be built around you at one click. You can edit these, though when I entered the editor, I’m not sure if the player is supposed to be able to move, but it was so jerky and hard to move it would make editing any form of prefab a massive pain. This jerky nature persists in every game mode I play, it’s like I have an extremely high ping whilst playing, even in LAN mode. Seeing as my spec’s are vastly higher than the recommended, I don’t know why this is happening and it is very frustrating.
One feature that isn’t explained fully is the voxel map importer. After looking at the developer’s page, and the Steam Green-light page it doesn’t say what you’re importing these maps from, so this is a feature right now that I do not know how to use or in fact whether it is a good or pointless feature.
Of course for those of you who are not that interested in making maps, the game does come with a large amount of pre-made maps ready to go, most are just for fun, but others do seem to have some balance added to them.
Past this, you get to the Call of Duty side of the game mechanics, which first brings you to Create A Class. Now, if you have played a Call Of Duty game, you are used to seeing your classes when you start a match. Same thing applies here – you have your primary, secondary and a few extras. You have two consumables, one is for medic kits and grenades, the other is for Gunk and Glue grenades. One covers your opponents screen and the other slows them down respectively. You can also choose combat and construction bonuses, which give you (as you might have guessed) bonuses when fighting, and when building in the match. When choosing your gun, it displays that there is no scope for the weapon, and that you’re using iron site. I am not sure if there are any other attachment options, if there are, they’re so well hidden I can’t find them, and if not, well that’s it. Of course the secondary items are all outclassed by the hookshot, allowing you to grab onto any point of the map from wherever you are. Its near unlimited range is only stretched in the largest maps, making me wonder why they bothered putting a range on it.
The Kick-starter also allows backers of certain money milestones access to different weapons, being a revolver at $25, AK-1337 at $65, RCP-9000 $90 and Beam Saber at a massive $150. I am unsure how much more powerful or useless these weapons are, but adding light sabers to this game for the high amount of $150 is reminiscent of Pay-to-win games, hopefully these weapons are correctly balanced and not the massive advantage they seem to be on paper.
Another feature of the game that is advertised is Gun Crafting, which is a more in depth than choosing your attachments in CoD. It sounds fun, but again if it has been implemented, I cannot find it. Whilst it sounds good in theory, I question whether it will just turn every weapon into a dildo machine gun of some sort. It will happen, and it will surely be abused like any system such as this. Plus, once the most over-powered combination is found, it will be abused by everyone.
There is a large list of game modes. You have your basic, DM, TDM, CTF and build mode. But there are some additional ones too. OnSlaught which is a horde like mode, Spleef the popular Minecraft mode, and two others: Lava Survival and Siege mode. I’m not sure what Lava Survival and Siege mode are, mostly because the only official servers being hosted are US based, and no EU servers. From what I played alone, they seem pretty self-explanatory, Lava Survival, is basically run to the highest point of the map, and just sit there and wait. Siege mode I guess is two large structures against each other, the lag I mentioned earlier persisted here, and with nothing explaining the goal of each mode, it’s still a mystery.
Considering the reason for Guncraft was that the developers thought Minecraft needed an objective, I find the lack of tutorials or explanation of the features/game modes very ironic.
There are some nice other features though, such as the ability to host servers locally, Peer or Dedicated are the choices. There are also a lot of community features being added to the game, Clans friends lists, leaders boards, etc. Of course most of these are standard in any FPS or multiplayer game at this point, so toting these as features seem redundant at best.
All in all, GunCraft is not a bad game, but it isn’t a good game either. It’s taken everything from the FPS check list, and made sure they are all checked, and then sprinkled a bit of Minecraft on top – something which Ace of Spades have already done. Because of this, the game just feels boring, some features seem interesting, but as they are not implemented yet, it doesn’t change that feeling after a while. Nothing felt new or impressive. It is the definition of an FPS. One of my larger gripes about the game is the UI, it is not helpful and is cluttered and clumsy. It made my preview hard because whilst looking at the feature list of the game, it was never clear to me what was implemented, and what wasn’t.
Editors Comment “I have this game as well thanks to a free code.. this to me feels like Call of Duty or any FPS Shooter created using the Minecraft engine and to be honest unless you are a tech geek and go about finding out what engine this game actually uses then you would simple agree. To say anything less is ironic since if they where trying to create a game that is far away from Minecraft as possible then why just alter the name Mine and replace it with Gun, well that’s simple really its Minecraft with Guns. This is what we got from an email from John Getty ‘Executive Producer & Lead Game Designer’ “All We’ve done since starting development is differentiate ourselves from Ace of Spades and Minecraft by introducing tons of features neither of them have.” Yes this is true yet its still Minecraft with guns”
Disclaimer:All Previews given are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase or try the game yourself.