October 26th, 2012 | By Dominic Tarason
Minecraft clones can go jump off a blocky, procedurally generating cliff for all I care. Codehatch Corp’s Starforge, however, is something else. It’s part of a wave of games that looked at the success of Minecraft and said ‘That’s cool and all, but we can do better’. The first alpha builds of the impressive-looking game were a huge hit and drummed up a lot of positive press, but now the game has fallen out of the limelight. After a change of business model from F2P to regular alphafunding (a pre-order price of $15 right now), a new attempt to draw in development funding has just begun for the game. Here’s the pitch video, featuring gigantic guns, huge aliens and aerial chainsaw duels:
As you can see, it’s looking pretty amazing, and there’s some features in there like procedurally generated guns and stress-tracking building systems that you don’t see often. I don’t need to point out that it looks absolutely lovely too, do I? You can play a free demo build on the official site to get a taste for it yourself, or preorder (ideally via the IndieGoGo funding drive) for access to each new version as it is released, along with the first test-build of their endless voxel-based world.
Personally, I think what really sets it apart from everything else is the movement physics. While not quite as thoroughly simulated as A New Zero, all your animations are tied to the forces applied to your character. What does this mean? Well, I managed to climb backwards up a sheer cliff face in the current demo by firing a high-calibre machine gun – the resultant recoil was enough to let my character’s feet find purchase on the surface and walk as if it was the ground. Playing in first-person can be a disorienting experience, but in third-person you get a much better idea of what your characters body is doing in relation to your facing.
The funding drive for the game will last until November 29th, and the devlopers aim to raise a remarkably small $75,000. Given the quality of the game on show already, I really hope they hit several times that target.