Ten, Nine, Eight, Seven, Six, Five, Four, Three, Two, One, ZERO! I have seven minutes and thirty seconds to help my team utterly destroy the other side, preferably without dying. I take off and begin to climb in a left, then right hand spiral. I reach the altitude I normally cruise at and begin to venture over enemy territory. I keep a sharp eye for moving objects- and then I spot it! A good sized tank with plasma cannons starts to fire at me, the red spheres of doom heading towards my craft. They all miss me as I begin to turn and aim at this puny attacker. I hit him once, twice, three times, all the while being fired at by the person’s team mates.
I destroy my opponent and move on, looking for more prey. Then, out of the blue I am hit by someone. One of my wings and a thruster is gone, making it harder for me to control my plane. I begin to dodge and spin, keeping an eye out for my insidious attacker. I spot my opponent and lock on him, trying to avoid his shots at me. I lose another wing, but he loses far more….
Robocraft, an increasingly well known game created by FreeJam and released on steam, has been compared to the child of World of Tanks and Minecraft. It is so much more than that.
In Robocraft, you can build armored tanks, thruster-powered aircraft, hovercraft, crawling bug-like vehicles, helium-lifted craft or a mixture of all of them. You can build your craft in any shape, size or configuration you want. I personally am a big fan of bigger aircraft that carry a whole bunch of plasma cannons, while I am also fan of smaller, more maneuverable aircraft with machine guns to act as a fighter. You can have multiple crafts, as the game starts you off with three slots (known as garages) for your vehicles.
In this game, your imagination is the limit. Well, and how much RP (Robot Points, money for buying new bricks), TP (Tech Points, for researching new bricks) and pFLOPS (how many bricks your craft can contain). As you progress in the game, you can unlock new wings, wheels, thrusters, weapons, hoverboards and more.
There are now 4 types of weapons, machine guns, rail guns, plasma cannons and Nanotech disruptors, each with unique characteristics. Machine guns are what they sound like, fast firing guns that are effective at shorter ranges. Rail guns are super accurate guns that have the slowest rate of fire and are excellent for sniping. Plasma cannons have a long range, are very powerful and have a slow fire rate. The trick with plasma cannons is that they fire in an arc, so there is a bit of a learning curve. Nanotech disruptors, the newest weapon class added, is a weapon that can heal your teammates and hurt your enemies. It has a very short effective range but has a continuous beam, so once you lock on to a target you can constantly, consistently cause carnage. All of these weapon classes have different strategies that factor heavily into what kind of craft you will build.
You not only have the capacity to upgrade your craft, you can also create one. The different blocks allow for an infinite variety of designs. You can design your craft to fit your playing style. My aircraft are a custom fit to my capabilities in the game and to the tactics I use. Some people make their craft works of art that you admire right up to the point they kill you. I also love having to change my tactics due to what role the other people’s craft are built for. It makes each battle a unique experience that can never be repeated again. You learn to become flexible, and to use different thought processes in different situations.
What is really appealing about this game is that you get to apply childhood Lego skills to create super awesome vehicles whose sole purpose is to destroy the competition. You are the master of your fate, you get to destroy the competition and see what designs work and what designs don’t. I find that there is a rush you get when I know that I have the best or most effective vehicle in the battle. I also enjoy tweaking my vehicles to make them better, to improve their performance, to enhance their ability to completely destroy other people’s creations. This game will seem cool at first, but it will grow on you until it becomes one of your most commonly played games in your steam library.
To feel the joy of winning, to feel the despair of losing, and to make your sole goal to build a vehicle that will utterly destroy the competition, that is what make this game awesome. The feelings you get in this game are unlike any other, as you are the only one to blame for your losses and your successes. But don’t just take my word for it, go play it yourself!