No one can deny that Minecraft is simply one of the best independent titles of the past few years. But even when playing this sandbox building title is extremely compelling, it may become tedious after playing for long periods of time. Thankfully for fans of the genre, Minecraft has inspired many clones and imitators. This short list features some of the best paid alternatives to Mincreaft, so if you like Notch’s most notable creation and you’re willing to pay a little bit of money for something that looks and plays similarly; here are some games that may grab your attention:
5) Cortex Command (PC, $18)
Developed by Data Realms, Cortex Command is a two-dimensional side scrolling action game… Wait, isn’t this a post about sandbox building games? Although its execution may seem quite different to Minecraft, both games share many similarities. Basically, in Cortex Command you control a brain that needs to retrieve a control chip from a cave and to do so, the brain is required to mine gold, manage various resources and defend against zombies. Sounds familiar? Those who would like to play something similar to Minecraft in concept but are tired of the same generic art style, should definitely try Cortex Command.
4) Total Miner (Xbox 360, $3)
This is another Minecraft clone available for the Xbox 360 and has everything you may expect in a game of this kind. Among other features Total Miner has creation, combat, survival, crafting and RPG elements. In addition, there is a Creative mode in which you have unlimited resources to build whatever you want and Dig Deep where players are encouraged to explore caves, slay monsters and find treasures. The best features of Total Miner are the fact that up to 24 players can play at the same time and its price, as the game is currently available for 240 Microsoft Points (roughly $3.) Total Miner may offer less content than Minecraft, but considering that this game is only $3, players have little to complain about.
3) Blockland (PC, $19.95)
Blockland is a multiplayer-oriented game that was made possible thanks to an engine called Torque Game which provides a very unique art style extremely reminiscent of Legos. In this game, players can create almost everything they want using Lego-like blocks and as a way of encouraging construction, there are no immediate goals and objectives. At first, this title started as a virtual homage to Lego, but soon enough it became something completely different. Blockland spent three years of its life in Beta and in 2007 achieved retail state. Since then, many loyal users have been playing the title and creating some awesome constructions.
As an alternative to Minecraft, Blockland is a really good game but before buying it, those interested should know that Blockland is all about building. Here you don’t have any survival or even crafting modes. Additionally, the building tools are much more complex than Minecraft, but to mitigate this, up to 32 players can work together to build cities, cathedrals, castles or whatever they want.
2) Fortresscraft (Xbox 360, $3)
Fortresscraft is a game released on Xbox Live Indie Games and this is definitely Minecraft on the Xbox 360. In fact, the developers of Fortresscraft have openly cited Minecraft, Infiniminer and Dwarf Fortress as direct inspirations to this title. Unique features include the fact that users may use their own Xbox avatar rather than a generic one and multiplayer is also supported. The game is currently available for 240 Microsoft Points (roughly $3) which makes it a really attractive and cheap alternative to other Minecraft clones. If you have been waiting for a game like Minecraft to be available on the the Xbox 360, wait no longer, as that game exists and it’s called Fortresscraft.
1) Terraria (PC, $10)
Although many will probably disagree, Terraria is the best paid alternative to Minecraft. Nevertheless, even when both games are extremely similar I wouldn’t go as far as saying that Terraria is exactly like Minecraft but in 2D. In Terraria you mine and explore a fully realized two-dimensional world, but apart from that you interact with dozens of NPC’s, fight powerful bosses, make weapons, gather materials, build constructions and so on and so forth. As you can see in this description both games share similarities, but Terraria is more oriented towards adventure and the player is given various objectives to fulfill. Of course, you can always overlook those objectives and try creating a marvelous castle for example. Go ahead, no one’s stopping you…
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