Gameplay - 8
Presentation - 6.5
Creativity - 9
Lifespan - 8.5
Crea is a great game.
Crea is an example of a great alpha game, and what's provided now looks tiny in comparison to what the devs have planned.
Crea is an indie game developed by Siege Games which was on Kickstarter in July 2012 which had a goal of $15,000 but instead got $27,870. On first glance you may assume it’s a Terraria clone, however after playing it for a while you’ll soon learn why that’s not true. The game is targeted towards people that enjoy the idea of creating your own little base or fortress in games such as Minecraft and Terraria, however this game adds more to the adventure side of things by adding several RPG elements and nice touches which make your time playing Crea much more enjoyable.
Crea is what all early access games should be like.
Crea is quite creative in it’s own way, it adds many elements that games like Terraria or Starbound are missing right now, such as the streamlined use of items or having the ability to research specific materials so you can find more uses for them and many more. There is also a story behind Crea which is told through item descriptions but unfortunately I wasn’t able to find much out in-game due to limited time. However with the mod-support which this game has, players will have no issue with running out of things to do due to the up-coming support of Steam Workshop.
Crea paces like many other sandbox games, you start off designing your character which is rather limited at this point in time, and once the world loads the map you’re thrown in. Crea does offer a tutorial which does simply tell the player what button does what, it could be expanded to explain how to use certain items like the research table as it would save a bit of unnecessary fiddling about, unless I’m just horrible at the game. You’ll know what enemies are too tough for you unless you’re feeling a bit brave due to a levelling system which I adore, this is the first sandbox game where magic isn’t a pain to use and I enjoy using.
Everything you do gives you exp, but you can gain specific exp through doing certain tasks. For example, you gain magic exp for using offensive spells, or crafting exp for crafting several items. This gives the player a reason to explore and fight enemies instead of avoiding everything as enemies will come at you in more numbers if left to populate. It adds a whole new reason for me to go into caves and beat everything to a pulp and once you get enough exp in a specific tree you can spend those points on certain skills like having a better fire spell or faster mining.
The crafting and researching is another important aspect of the game, and they work together, you can’t just have crafting as you need to research some materials to actually build new items. To research an item you would have to place a material onto the on-screen box and simply hit research, this then gives you new items to craft. I was extremely surprised with the sheer amount of things to make, it gave me more of an incentive to go and explore to see what new items I can create. Crea does something that other sandbox games don’t and it’s keep me entertained and wanting to play, I’ve mentioned that Crea gives the player a lot of incentive to play and keeps me hooked to a point where I lose track of time, I could go on about the amount of things to do, but that would take me a while.
Crea has a charming appearance and style that other sandbox games don’t really provide, it’s joyful and it’s pleasant to look at and it’s a welcoming change from all the boring brown colour pallets that developers love these days. The soundtrack is also decent, it goes very well with the style of the game, there were no tracks that stood out to me but I enjoyed it regardless. The menus in-game are also easy to understand and can be moved across your screen so you can place your inventory items into the research slot. However there were some bugs that I ran into as when I launch the game it seems like clicking anything will make it crash until the menu has loaded and another where my game randomly closed, however this was just an inconvenience as the game picked up from where it crashed.
Crea is picks up the slack that other 2D Sandbox games didn’t.
When it comes to the lifespan of a game, I tend to run out after a few points, especially with early access games. However with Crea I don’t have this issue. The alpha of Crea has more than enough features to hold off current fans of the game and if the developers consistently add features and iron out the bugs then it will succeed and with the extensive mod support then Crea will end up having an endless amount of features to appeal to all players.
Crea is definitely your monies worth, it’s around £10 which is significantly cheaper than most early-access games. I enjoyed Crea because I tend to play a lot of sandbox style games but I get bored after half an hour and I was glad that I was able to play Crea without forcing myself through it. I can see Crea succeeding among other games of similar style, it manages to feel unique among other sandbox games and sets it apart from the crowd.
With the abundant amount of features, you’ll still be finding out new things by the time the key updates are released. It may start off a bit slow but once you’ve managed to craft some good gear and explore the deepest levels of the map, you’ll be glad to have purchased this game.