By Nathan Grayson on November 16th, 2013 at 10:00 am.
OK, upon second viewing, Rift and Defiance developer Trion’s Trove looks more like Cube World than it does Minecraft. A lot like Cube World. Kind of eerily so. But I suppose it can’t be avoided now that the MMO genre’s been bitten by the voxel bug and– actually, wait, yes it can. EverQuest Next is voxel-based too. Hmmmm. Oh well, enough making block mountains out of block molehills. The truest measure of any game – visual similarities to genre heavy hitters or not – is in how it plays, and while Trion has a framework in place for Trove, that part will largely be up to you.
At this point, Trove sounds a lot like other sandbox role-playing/crafting games – just with all their various easily swallowed bits and bobs rolled into a single whole. There will be countless procedurally generated worlds, freeform exploration, so much crafting that your heart will probably swell with too much contentedness and collapse in on itself, and a glittering bounty of RPG elements like loot, dungeons, and classes. Meanwhile, the ability to create and upgrade your own personal “Cornerstone” might help set it apart:
“We added the ability to create your very own trans-dimensional home. This base persists across worlds and servers, is completely customizable, and will grow and travel with you throughout your adventures. The result? You’ll own a part of Trove no matter where we go or how the game evolves.”
Iiiiiiiiiiiinteresting. Plus, Trion is known for creating generally strong – though often not particularly original – games, so this fits their MMO M.O. perfectly. The developer has proven quite good at intelligently improving tried-and-true concepts, so here’s hoping that trend crisscrosses its way through Trove’s infinite DNA as well.
You can sign up for a soon-to-begin alpha right now. You may as well, given that Cube World isn’t exactly rushing toward completion these days. Then again, it does feel a little icky throwing support behind a game that at least very much looks to have plucked a few ideas from Cube World’s toybox. But then, you could argue that Cube World copied elements of Minecraft, which copied elements of Infiniminer, which copied… etc, etc, etc. Ultimately, genres advance through slow, often risk-averse iteration. Here’s hoping this one grows a few more branches before its roots begin to spoil and, ultimately, rot.