Release Date: 2 November 2015
Developer: Funcraft Games
With the success of Minecraft there have been so many terrible rip offs that you could build a house out of them. The slightly later release of Terraria if anything had even more of it due to it’s simplistic looking 2D design. Stacks TNT looks to try and switch up the formula with a few new twists. As it’s a game about exploration and discovery I’ve detailed my adventures in stages below.
Attempt One: I select survival mode and spawn into a randomly generated land next to a flag. There’s a countdown in the corner but I don’t really pay attention to it. I set to work figuring out the basics of digging and build and discover a jetpack that lets you move around. I then quickly realise that the jetpack is designed out of laziness to help you move around as it doesn’t let you move too high above any given block. Suddenly several purple guys burst through a nearby hill and run towards my flag. As soon as they touch it I get a game over.
Attempt Two: This time I read through the help screen and watch the provided ‘How To’ guides on the developers website. Upon spawning in I start collecting a bunch of materials and make some walls to halt the enemies so I’ll have enough time to deal with them. I then test out the blueprint system which lets you create production buildings – I now have a factory that smelts my ore into metal blocks. Some enemies come towards my flag so I go and punch them to death. Feeling safe for a while I decide to set out and explore a little bit. This almost immediately involves falling off the end of the map and getting a game over.
Attempt Three: I immediately set up walls and start digging down for new ores to smelt. Suddenly everything explodes and the mine is on fire. Escaping to the surface I try to repair the floor but discover that gravity seems to effect my structures and the blocks I place keep falling into the flaming hole. Whilst I’m distracted trying to fill the hole the enemy steals my flag and I get a game over.
At this point I decided to switch over to creative mode where I discovered that there are only 50 items in the game and after playing with the blocks I discovered it’s near impossible to build anything as the gravity causes it to collapse. Even a 4×4 block can collapse if you build it in the wrong order! After a short amount of playing around with the various different things I quickly grew bored. It was recommended that I try and build a spaceship, so I did. After a lot of exploding and falling apart, I eventually managed to launch a simple rocket into the air and- well that was it. It hovered for a short while then crashed back down again.
Stacks TNT is the start of an alright game. It’s got the basics of mining and crafting and the building plots are fairly interesting. But there’s simply just not enough stuff to make it interesting and trying to build anything creative is almost instantly thwarted by the structure collapsing on you. It’s something you might expect to see on Congregate or Newgrounds as an early developers project. If you’re planning to buy this game then I would highly advise against it. I’d recommend you get Terraria instead, at this point it offers hundreds and hundreds of hours of content and costs next to nothing. It should be pointed out that the review key for this product was provided by the developer free of charge.